Sunday, December 02, 2007

Florida Governor Charlie Crist for MASS TRANSIT CZAR!

16 years. That's how long Florida and the Seminoles warred over casino gambling. And then along came Charlie Crist. Within months the newly elected governor hammered out an agreement between the Seminoles and the State that the Florida legislature couldn't do, a deal that would guarantee the state $375 million in the first three years and to share 10 to 25 percent of the gambling pot after that provided the state doesn't allow racetracks or other nontribal gambling operations to expand into table games. If the politicians don't fail at derailing this plan, it is estimated that as much as "$1 billion over the first five years and $500 million every year thereafter"* will be available for education.

We really like his take charge attitude and think it should be used to get stalled mass transit programs fast tracked. The two that come to mind are:

Negotiations are ongoing regarding using the FEC corridor. We think Charlie should step in and and make it happen sooner rather than later. Although voters want some form of a mass transit connection between Miami and Miami Beach (we advocate a monorail), ex-Miami Beach Mayor David Dermer put up such a fight against it, that the plan has been pushed "back to the future," i.e, probably not in our lifetimes. This is wrong. Very wrong. Thanks to Dermer, who forced a second election on the matter, the people had to vote for it twice. We need it now, not tomorrow. Hopefully our "Get 'r done" Governor will turn his attention to both transportation issues and make them a reality before he leaves office. This could be his version of Kennedy getting a man on the moon. It should be a lot easier, right?

2 comments:

brickell said...

I emailed the Gov a link. What I'd really like to see in addition to this is a regional rail system linking the major metros. It doesn't have to be high speed, it just has to work. It probably won't be a cabinet position anytime soon, but hopefully we can get a transit czar out of him.

Verticus S. Erectus said...

Thanks for using MVB as it was meant to be used. We linked the gov too as we do most policy makers on things that we lobby for on this humble blog.