4/15: Georgia Legislature: An empty feeling

By the AJC Editorial Board

The Legislature in 2011 stubbornly refused to act on model legislation to create 21st-century governance for the Atlanta region’s multiple transit agencies. They nixed a model that’s proved its worth elsewhere.
What bubbled up instead this year was more of the tired same — a proposal to move transit oversight to a state-controlled board. That might make sense in a state that contributes meaningfully to urban transit. Georgia doesn’t.

This idea, too, went nowhere. Lawmakers also stonewalled a measure to extend MARTA’s relief from an important funding restriction, which is to end next year. Read the rest of what the AJC Editorial Board had to say.

Then check out what Mike Klein, editor at The Georgia Public Policy Foundation, has to say, along with commentary by Alan Essig, executive director of the Georgia Budget and Policy Institute, and tell us what you think.

21 comments Add your comment

Mary Elizabeth

April 17th, 2012
2:45 pm

From the book, “Family of Secrets: The Bush Dynasty, the Powerful Forces That Put It in the White House, and What Their Influence Means for America” by Russ Baker (Bloomsbury Press, New York, 2009), Chapter 17, page 365:

“As New York Times reporter David Cay Johnston discovered, the Texas Republican Party had already expressed official disapproval of such activity, having stipulated: ‘Public money (including taxes or bond guarantees) or public powers (such as eminent domain) should not be used to fund or implement so-called private enterprise projects.’ 16″

Reference source for Footnote 16, from Chapter 17, of “Family of Secrets” (page 544):

“16. David Cay Johnston, “Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (and Stick You with the Bill) (New York: Portfolio, 2007), p. 79.”

Evidently, Georgia’s Legislature would be well to question not only the legitimacy (moral and legal) of using government established teacher retirement pension funds for private business venture capital risky investment endeavors, but also to question the legitimacy of using public tax funds – which were meant for public “government” schools – as funds for educational vouchers which could be distributed to private for-profit schools, to home schooling parents, or to online private for-profit educational companies for the education of the general public’s children in Georgia.