October 14, 2007

Hope for the future

We've talked a lot about transportation here with an emphasis on tolling and infrastructure privatization. Many of you around Texas and the nation have been able to follow what's going on in our corner of the world, even if you've felt a little left out or overwhelmed by some of the specifics. I know this because you've taken the time to email me and tell me that you're not following me on some of this stuff. 'Why are you so concerned with tolls?' is a common question.

It's simple. Infrastructure privatization and tolls aren't a good deal for the citizens of Austin. It's more than likely not a good deal for you in your area. To recap, it's the most expensive option for funding infrastructure improvements, toll taxes are extremely regressive and it leaves open the door for infrastructure privatization.

Which brings me to what happened last Monday night. Four people stood up for the people of Central Texas. One of them was Representative Eddie Rodriguez. Despite all the hype about tolls being the transportation panacea, Rep. Rodriguez made a decision based on research, common sense and what's best for his constituents.

He also noticed that the plan, touted by the AAS, Chamber and a certain overreaching State Senator as relieving congestion, didn't do ANYTHING to relieve our current congestion points. In fact, even after these roads are built our congestion will get worse.

In the wake of this, comes opinions out of the Statesman, which has been unabashed in their support of tolling, despite the fact that it doesn't fix our traffic problems. They spent a recent editorial lauding CAMPO and their great decision. Never mind the fact that they've been convinced that tolls are the only way by some really poor decision making. Their point has been 'indexing the gas tax would be best, but that's not going to happen so we have to take what we can get'. What they fail to mention is that the Lege is going to change dramatically as political power realigns in this state in 2008. They also fail to mention that should things change and TXDoT shift back to a bias for free roads, we can't undo what's done. In other words, CAMPO made a decision out of desperation and stupidity which we're all stuck paying.

Well, some members of CAMPO did.

A true public servant is someone who can withstand massive amounts of pressure from all sides and do the right thing. We know that Rep. Rodriguez was receiving the same pressure from members of the Chamber that Councilwoman Kim and the other 'no' votes received. On behalf of everyone here, thank you for standing up to it and doing what's best for all Central Texas. You voted not to tie Central Texas taxpayers to this ridiculous project. We won't forget that.

Rodriguez is someone everyone in Texas should know. He's a leader, in the truest sense of the word. He's the future of the Democratic Party in Texas, one of many who'll be doing the heavy lifting to make our state a better place for all Texans.

Posted by mcblogger at October 14, 2007 09:54 AM

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Eddie is great guy.. always standing up for what's right. I'm proud to call him my Rep. Everyone send him checks now. :)

Posted by: crystalLFT [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 15, 2007 03:55 PM

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