In some previous messages, I have warned about the possibility of the stimulus funds proposed by the incoming administration being “hijacked” by entities like Departments of Transportation and road contractor organizations for big new projects and public-private partnerships for the benefit of private corporations, rather than the original goal of infrastructure repair.
Linda Curtis, of Independent Texans, has created a letter with input from many Texas organizations that want any stimulus funds to be appropriately used. This letter has been sent to the transition team and many federal, state, and local officials. A big “Thank You” to Linda for many days of hard work in researching and writing this letter and rounding up a large group of signatories.
Here is the message and link to the letter from Linda:
To: firstname.lastname@example.orgFrom: email@example.comDate: Fri, 9 Jan 2009 11:26:27 -0600Subject: [Indyfriends] Letter to the Transition Team & Congress on Texas Transportation
Dear Friends and Members:
Attached you will find a letter sent by 24 Texas based organizations, to the Obama Transition Team copied to the entire Texas Congressional Delegation. It urges caution and a careful review of the use of any stimulus funds for Texas transportation, in light of our on-going fight to stop the Trans-Texas Corridor and privatized toll plans of Gov. Rick Perry and his allies.
The letter is now parked at this site (and we have attached it below my signature):
The recent statements by TxDOT officials and the Governor conceding a reduction in the Corridor's footprint (scaled back to 600 feet) and that no non-compete clauses will be allowed for privatized highways, remain to be realized in the next legislative session. What's more, we will not concede any land within one of the world's 3% most fertile soils -- the blackland prairie in Central Texas. Thousands of Texans who attended hearings near IH-35 have made plain that they can support a widening of IH-35, supported by TxDOT's own study in 1991 to help metro areas. TxDOT could have legitimately requested funds for that.
As you know, the Texas legislative session will begin next Tuesday, January 13th. It is now time for you to contact your US Congressional Representative, our two US Senators, Hutchison and Cornyn, and your Texas House and Senate representatives. Go to this link to pull up all of your reps:
Call them, email them or write them a letter -- and ask your friends, family and members to do the same. Urge your reps to do all they can to ensure that stimulus funds only be used for transportation facilities which enjoy clear public support. The Trans-Texas Corridor, nor privatized toll facilities fit in to this category. They can request funds to widen IH-35.