Chicago Sun-Times

Gov. Blagojevich's "cute stunt"

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Check out Mark Brown's column today on Gov. Blagojevich's $24 million bailout for the CTA. He does a pretty good job of summing up the underlying issues behind the governor's offer and the CTA and RTA's reaction to it.

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Governor Blagojevich is going to keep giving the CTA advances every three months until next year. At which point the CTA will be more than two years behind in budget. That's when things are going to get really interesting.

Why do people, especially the politicians, seem to be so content with a fake quick fix, that could potentially lead to more drastic problems in less than two months. I have absolutely no faith in any part of the state government to be able to get a funding deal to keep the system operating. And as a person who has to rely on the public transit system, I just don't understand why it seems to be less of a priority than political pay raises and other perks. It is very frustrating to be caught in the middle of this game of chicken, and something needs to be done before the politicians screw us over again.

On Blajovich's web site, he boasts that he increased spending for schools and "universal" preschool by $3.8 BILLION, that he increased spending on "healthcare security" by $500 MILLION, and that he "exercised his veto authority to remove $463 million in 'pork' projects".

To Blagovich, the CTA is "pork". I want to know when was the last time he relied on the CTA, Pace, or Metra.

I read that the CTA has already diverted all the capital funds to prop up operating costs that they are allowed to by law, they have no more money in their pension fund, and that they have $70 million in retiree health care expenses due next year.

While Blagovich has been busy "cutting pork", the CTA is in a death spiral, with no money to pay their health care obligations.

With the CTA gone, traffic in Chicago will be impossible, and gas prices will spike as all the former CTA riders fuel up their cars. How long do you think businesses will stick around Chicago in such an environment?

When the businesses leave Chicago in droves due to lack of basic infrastructure, who will be around to pay for education and health care?

Our system is 100 years + old and needs improvement and upgrades. However this is not a priority with our politicians. Why? Why should they care?!

Mayor Daley and his family are escorted all over our city by personal car and three drivers. Hmm. If we took that away and forced them to take our buses and trains, don't you think there would be change? It would be interesting to see Mayor Daley having to commute an hour and a half just to roll approx. 6 miles.

Then there is our Governor. For some odd reason, he doesn't live in our state capitol, but resides in Chicago. We pay for each and every commute to Springfield. He should be like the rest of us and try to find out how he's going to get to Springfield via public transportation.

Many of Chicagoans are hard working with one, two or more jobs and using public transportation to save money or because we cannot afford a vehicle.

If you speak to the riders, it seems like the average commute is a hour + each way. If you see someone with a bicycle or walking, it's because there is no bus or train in that area after a certain time or because of the area.

Many people also work far away from where they reside. That's where the jobs are at. If you want to survive and make decent money, you commute.

If our "leaders" don't want to help our city, then we need to change all the goodies they get. And why do we have free trollies, all these flowers decorating our city, etc if we have no money to get our people to and from work efficently? Just wondering...

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Monifa Thomas published on September 13, 2007 1:22 PM.

In other news: Blue Line slow zones will be gone by next year, CTA says was the previous entry in this blog.

Doomsday's delayed. Now what? is the next entry in this blog.

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