Thursday, April 30, 2009
Night of the Living Transit Tax
The story is misheadlined: Missouri House votes to send $12 million in stimulus money to Metro because let's just see what it is. Is it:
    The House voted Wednesday to use $12 million in federal stimulus funds to soften dramatic service cuts at Metro.

    The sponsor of the Metro funding amendment, Rep. Rachel Storch, D-St. Louis, said thousands of people can't get to work since bus routes at the St. Louis-area transit agency were slashed. She also decried cuts in transportation services for the disabled.
I thought stimulus money couldn't go to mass transit, but either I was misinformed or rules and promises out of the government are subject to change at the next member of government's whim (logically, this is a false dilemma, as it could be both).

At least Representative Storch is clear about how unwise it is to use "one-time" stimulus payments to bridge budget deficits:
    Storch portrayed it as stopgap funding until Metro can persuade area voters to raise taxes for the system.
Ah, yes. Because the voters have spoken, but they spoke wrongly and must receive chance after chance to do what the leaders want.

So what the state legislature has approved is a $12 million marketing and lobbying budget. It won't get old bus routes running again, but it will bridge a gap in the efforts to convince people to raise their taxes.

Kind of like those nice vinyl signs on the bus stops that are out of service. Metro did not remove the bus stop signs. No, they converted them all into free billboards to tell the electorate how it done Metro wrong.

To say Noggle, one first must be able to say the "Nah."