07 June 2008

Dodging Common Sense

The Toll Road lease has been one of the most polarizing projects in the state of Indiana. All of northern Indiana reviles the governor for "selling out." The governor counters with the billions of dollars brought into the state's coffers. It's been this way for a few years now.

In government, sometimes legislators are offered perks. Maybe a dinner here, a game there. It's called lobbying. The latest perk is a bit much and arrogant. According to the Indianapolis Star, Cintar-Macquarie, the Spanish-Australian consortium responsible for the operation of the Toll Road, gave the iZoom transponders to all legislators in northern Indiana, then offered them to all legislators. The transponders charge vehicles at the original rate, whereas the rates at toll booths have gone up considerably.

In the spirit of equity, most legislators rejected the perk, saying they're no better than their constituents, especially with gas at $4/gallon. I said most legislators. Reps. Dick Dodge (R-Pleasant Lake) and Chet Dobis (D-Merrillville) have gone on record saying they will use their transponders, basically telling their constituents to go fly a kite.

How out of touch are these fellas...jobs are leaving the region (I know, I lived in South Bend as a child, until my dad got a better job in Indy. His old job in SB was gone in two years), gas is going up, and nothing new is going there. Voters up there should give both of these guys the boot in the fall.

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