TRAC committee would rather not hear your thoughts on streetcar vote


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I hope you didn’t have any long prepared statements you were hoping to make at the upcoming TRAC voting session because the it seems the TRAC committee is not interested in your thoughts on the matter.

Next Thursday, April 12th, the (once) non-partisan Transportation Review Advisory Council (TRAC) at the Ohio Department of Transportation will be meeting to vote on the final list of major transportation projects to be funded by the state, and on the  agenda is a vote on whether to support giving funds to the Cincinnati streetcar project that we highlighted last week.

It seems the committee is aware that the Cincinnati project maybe a popular topic at the meeting.  so much so that they have released specific rules for public comment on the project at the upcoming meeting.

According to the speaking guidelines released by the committee, in total, supporters of the project will have 20 minutes to speak, opponents will have 20 minutes to speak, and there will be 20 minutes for comments regarding all other projects being voted on that day.  As part of that, any individual wishing to speak for or against the Cincinnati project will be allowed to speak for only two minutes at a time.

As you may remember the state Senate took the courageous step to prohibit any state funds from being used on the project.  In December, the last time the streetcar project came before the committee, TRAC voted to support giving the project $35 million in a unanimous vote.  The state can not award those funds until TRAC approves their final list of projects at this meeting.

With Governor Kasich already voicing his opposition to giving the funds to the project, and with the actions that the Senate took to prevent funds being used toward it, it is looking more and more like this project is not going to be supported by the committee. This is the same committee that upon reviewing the projected awarded it the highest score out of any transportation project that it reviewed on its list.

You can add this most recent development to the growing list of evidence that this administration doesn’t really give a hoot what you think about its agenda. And if you still feel like making a public comment on the direction it is taking this state it would be best that you kept it short and sweet.

 

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