Sunday, December 7, 2008

Infrastructure improvements

As President elect Obama is pushing hard on using infrastructure improvements to boost the economy. Many of us campaigned to pass a capitol works bill in Springfield so we could take advantage of the millions of dollars in Federal money available to us if we simply provide matching funds. This single event could provide thousand of jobs and help to improve the business environment in Illinois. But for some strange reason the big 3 leaders in Springfield cannot seem to get their collective act together. Now we have the possibility of being able to add more to the list. Hopefully new leadership in the State Senate will allow us to take advantage of what appears to be some much needed help.

The answer to reviving this economy is staring us right in the face and yet the political will to stand up to three men could not be mustered this past year. Many of our Reps and Senators just seem to stand around watching and waiting doing nothing to resolve the problem.

Today's Daily Herald listed a number of projects including expanding Routes 47 & 45. I would add Routes 120, 176 and east-west rail lines to the list. While we're at it let's take a look at the many communities where a new municipal center could be built or new sidewalks or water lines, sewer lines would make life safer and better for all.

One Senator was retiring so he didn't care.

Another Rep just kept saying "We're broke, We're broke" like a broken record offering no solutions except to cut spending (like that would produce jobs). He complained that the Democrats won't let him do anything while also saying that if you took a vote of his colleagues in Springfield he would be in the top 5 in popularity. Well since he thinks he is so popular how come he was only able to pull in $250K to McHenry County this past session while everyone else was bringing in twice that much or better? And that included members of his party with less seniority. He apparently doesn't understand that this is no popularity contest.

Below are the dollars brought in to McHenry County and a link to the story:

From the NWH:

“The following is a tally of the state and federal monies directed back to McHenry County through legislator earmarks and member initiatives since 2003, or since the legislator took office:
$28.8 million U.S. Rep. Don Manzullo, R-16th
$14.1 million U.S. Rep. Melissa Bean, D-8th (took office 2005)
$3.1 million Ill. Rep. Jack Franks, D-Woodstock*
$501,000 Ill. Rep. Mike Tryon, R-Crystal Lake (took office 2004)
$250,000 Ill. Rep. Mark Beaubien, R-Barrington Hills
$0 Ill. Sen. Pam Althoff, R-McHenry
Total: $46.8 million”

Earmarks help many legislators send money to their constituents

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