AAS Editorial On CAMPO Vote, No Surprise

Posted in Privatization, Had Enough Yet?, Road Issues, Central Texas, Commentary at 9:49 am by wcnews

It’s mostly an editorial, (don’t forget to read the comments), trying once again to convince us that CAMPO had no other choice and trying to tell us what great leaders all that voted for this are because it takes guts to vote yes on a plan they know is bad, but we’ll thank them for it later.

Most members of the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, or CAMPO, understood that, at bottom, they really didn’t have much choice but to accept tolls if the Austin area is to get significant stretches of its highway system rebuilt and expanded. Despite the protesters’ warnings of “political suicide” to CAMPO members, we think most voters will recognize that reality as well.

You’ll thank them in the long run. Once they’ve been voted out of office and the tolls keep going up, and up, and up, you’ll thank them.

Then we get this.

Those most upset about tolls need to take their complaints to Gov. Rick Perry and a Republican-dominated Legislature bent on not raising the gasoline tax or any other tax. Yet the number of drivers continues to grow, older highways wear out and need to be expanded, and the real cost of construction continues to rise because of demand for building materials.

There are serious arguments to be made regarding the fairness of tolls, especially those charged on rebuilt expressways originally paid for with tax dollars.

But the majority of CAMPO board members Monday faced the fact that Austin could either keep arguing about tolls or pay them and get the highways built. The majority did right to vote to build.

Well of course it’s the current and previous governor and current and previous legislatures fault for the mess we’re in. But it would have been better to do nothing than to accept this long term lemon.

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