But now the opponents are going with the next common denominator attack. If they build light rail, say they should have built BRT. If they built BRT they would be saying only use buses such as is happening in Oakland. This is at the time when UTA is actually building out a real transit network with all different transit modes including streetcars, light rail, BRT and bus networks.
"I don't think it's done any great favors to transit down here," said Salt Lake City resident Stephen Pace, who led the anti-rail group Utahns for Responsible Public Spending. He said UTA should have focused instead on buses that have the same right-of-way preference over cars as trains, but are more flexible and require a less massive investment.This is the ugly side of the mode wars where people who fight it don't think ANY money should be spent on transit, even if they say in public we should. It's not a nod to smart planning ideas but rather what is cheaper. It shows because these attacks come amongst vigorous transit expansion in all modes. It's also interesting that opponents are starting to attack the conservative credibility of UTA's leaders. A lot of the anti-tax folks are coming out to argue against any spending via taxes.
Pace rails against the "so-called" elected officials who champion fiscally conservative values but are "just as deep in the federal trough as anybody else" to fund TRAX extensions into their communities.It makes me wonder, what is fiscally conservative anyway in terms of development and infrastructure expansion? Is it doing nothing?
This is also happening in Tampa where anti-tax conservatives are starting to feel as if they were left behind by their elected officials who understand that infrastructure is better funded collectively. The polarizing effects of the national debates are starting to trickle down to pure ideologies.
How ironic that Republicans, one of whom I first supported over 20 years ago, and one who pledged never to impose new taxes when he came seeking my assistance in running his first campaign several years ago, would be the leading proponents of a new tax that could siphon as much as $300 million per year from the residents of Hillsborough County.What's even better is that the author of the Tampa article also believes that people have a choice whether to spend money on gasoline or not, even when they construction of the communities they live in are based on the automobile alone.
Sharpe writes that the proposed tax increase of $85 per person is "... less than the three-week price rise in the cost of gasoline." Perhaps. But the option of paying for gas is ours and not an imposed burden by our government.Funny that imposed burden.