Under a Kasich administration, there will not be a 3-C passenger rail system in Ohio.
That’s simply the way it is.
But that isn’t stopping Governor Strickland from continuing to spend your taxpayer dollars to help fund its development.
Today, the Governor-elect sent two letters, one to Strickland and one to the President in an effort to cease the 3-C once and for all, and to redistribute the federal dollars Ohio won to more economically beneficial projects.
From the letter to Obama:
Passenger rail is not Ohio’s most pressing infrastructure concern at this time. Instead, Ohio’s existing freight rail and highway transportation infrastructure has significant upgrades needs. Therefore, I request that you make provisions for the $400 million to be used to support other vital transportation infrastructure projects in Ohio.
In the event that you cannot accede to my request, I ask that you take no actions to spend the funds allocated to Ohio so that these funds can go toward reducing the federal government’s $1.4 trillion deficit.
Does $400 million make a significant dent in the federal deficit? Relatively speaking, no. But that’s not the point. Federal money is your money. Plain and simple. Spending it for the sake of spending it is partly what got our country into such a fiscal mess. If the federal government is unwilling to bend the rules so Ohio can spend our tax dollars in ways that have been proven to enhance economic well-being, then the right thing to do is to write ‘return to sender’ on the envelope and send it back.
Ted Strickland has a responsibility to look out for the best interests of Ohio’s citizens. Each day he fails to cancel all contracts regarding the 3-C is another day where your money is being wasted. He’d be better off simply turning it all into cash and burning it. At least the Statehouse wouldn’t have to spend as much on the heating bill.
Join the Derail the 3-C facebook group by clicking here.
UPDATE: Strickland said no. Again.
From the Dispatch:
“There is nothing to fear from obtaining the good information that this study will provide to policy makers in the near term as well as the long term,” Strickland spokeswoman Kelly Schlissberg said. “So even if the governor-elect chooses not to support rail when he takes office, future governors or legislators with a vision for a modern Ohio will have better information as a result of this work.”
That response is downright insulting to the intelligence of taxpayers. For pete’s sake, Ohio is facing an $8 billion deficit. Should Ohio really be spending 10s of millions to maybe give future governors a potential plan in case the federal government decides to throw $400 million down the drain again? And what good would this potential plan provide? Without a doubt, variables will change over the next few years. Technologies will evolve and infrastructure will develop. So an old plan will be of use to whom? No one. That’s who.
I just don’t get Strickland’s angle on this. You don’t agree with Kasich that it should be built? Fine. But continuing to waste dollars out of spite isn’t exactly the way a Governor should want to go out.