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Wrong on transportation

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Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
 

In his latest unfortunate off-the-cuff remark, state House Majority Leader Mike Turzai said, regarding legislation to increase transportation funding by $2.5 billion a year, “nobody's asking for fees, fines and surcharges to be increased.” He is incorrect.

Laypeople and organizations representing both major political parties have pleaded with the General Assembly to do the right thing, to provide for road and bridge maintenance and repair, and for stability for public transit systems that take people to work, grocery shopping, appointments with their health-care providers, and to entertainment and recreation facilities.

As PennDOT imposes weight limits on 1,000 structurally deficient bridges, an action that will serve to thrust inconvenience and increased costs on all of us, a reasonable person would recognize that properly funding transportation needs is not a luxury, that it is not something that can be put off even when the economy is lackluster and people are struggling.

Gov. Corbett was initially reluctant to accept the conclusions and remedies offered by his blue-ribbon commission that studied the matter, but to his great credit, he has signed on to legislation to address this critical issue. Would that Turzai would have such an epiphany as well.

Members of the General Assembly will demonstrate whose side they are on when transportation funding legislation is voted on in the near future. Responsible Pennsylvanians will be watching and will hold them accountable for their votes.

Oren M. Spiegler

Upper St. Clair

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