It looks like we might have taken another step closer to getting an honest to goodness socialist form of transportation here in Ypsi. Here’s a letter I just received from City Council member Pete Murdock.
Great news for passenger rail in Michigan: last night about 11:00pm the House of Representatives passed HB 6484 (67 voting yes, 31 voting nay) which would provide up to $100 million in bond proceeds dedicated to rail projects in Michigan. The state Senate must pass this bill when they return in December. Please contact your state Senator and urge them to vote for HB 6484. Our senator (Liz Brater) can be reached at SenLBrater@senate.michigan.gov.
This will provide the necessary matching funds for the recently announced $150 million High Speed Rail grant as well as additional funds that could be used for infrastructure for the Detroit-Ypsilanti-AA commuter rail.
And, for what it’s worth, I haven’t actually heard anyone in the area refer to the train as a socialist plot. I did, however, hear a local talk radio guy say that traffic circles, like those popping up in the Township, were a sign that our leaders were pushing us toward European socialism, which didn’t make a lot of sense to me. (Not stopping at a stop sign seems a lot more “American” to me than coming to a complete stop, but what do I know about socialism… I didn’t find french fries offensive either.) But, then again, not a lot of what he says makes sense, which is why he’s broadcasting on AM, out of a windowless cinder block shed, in a bottom rung media market.
Speaking of socialism, the AATA is in the process of collecting “community input” which will, I’m told, somehow find its way into the Transit Master Plan for Washtenaw County. While the folks at the AATA are holding a number of public meetings throughout the County to discuss the future of public transit, you can also make your views known online, by playing their Transit Master Plan game. I ran through it a few days ago, and actually kind of enjoyed it. But, then again, I’m easily amused.