Tonight on PBS NOW:
President Obama’s stimulus money is nearly out the door and on its way to the states, but will it be spent in the way it is intended? One alarming example: Mass transit. Cities and states, strapped for money, are cutting back on mass transit even as it becomes more popular with Americans. Meanwhile, President Obama is calling for increased mass transit as a necessary step toward energy independence. Will the government’s investment dramatically revitalize our national travel infrastructure, or will states spend the money according to ‘business as usual’?
The show airs on KCTS at 8:30 PM.
Update: You can watch the show online here.
Looks like the transportation stimulus money that’s coming to Washington State prioritizes roads over transit, to the tune of $325 million dollars.
The stimulus bill would include close to $500 million to improve Washington’s highways, roads and bridges, along with an additional $175 million for new transit funding. The state could also compete for a share of a $60 million nationwide grant program for ferries and ferry terminals, and $1.5 billion for transportation projects of national or regional importance.
I can’t say that this was unexpected (I’ve been following the discussion and writing my reps), but it’s still beyond disappointing to see this unprecedented opportunity to invest in a sustainable transportation infrastructure pass us by.
I’ll keep you posted on how the transit money will be allocated.