Property tax relief and South Coast Rail were the two promises Patrick offered to southeastern Massachusetts voters in exchange for their votes in 2006. We know what happened to the first one…an update on the second…
Patrick ran on two promises to Massachusetts; property tax relief and South Coast Rail. The property tax promise was as empty as the stands at a Cher political benefit concert. There is no way to deny the fact that Deval Patrick lied to the people of Massachusetts on that one.
On rail? The MBTA is $100M in debt, has a back logged project book with costs exceeding $8 BILLION and the new study of existing infrastructure shows a dangerous lack of safety issues throughout the existing lines which include bridges, tunnels and the ground layout along the railways. Those costs are estimated in the hundreds of millions too. As it stands already, Massachusetts has the highest transportation debt in the nation.
While I believe the governor’s sincerity in stating that the people along Massachusetts’s south coast are deserving of rail since we paid for everyone else’s, I also believe he is in a quiet panic since there is no way to keep the promise without funds that today, do not exist. He once touted stimulus funding as a possible solution. He must have gotten the news from his friend President Obama that this was not going to happen. He and Lt. Governor Tim Murray have apparently also abandoned the grant scenario and now…are calling South coast rail a Pay-Go project! Pay-Go in 2011 with a $2.5B deficit for example. OK, so that year is out. Now you’re down to four years. Is the governor of Massachusetts suggesting that the fiscal years 2012 through 2016 will support the $2B project after all other projects and repairs are completed in that same time frame? Checkmate on the promise Governor Patrick. A Pay Go plan would virtually eviscerate the promised timetable of rail as a reality by 2016 and you have to know this. I’ll even give you until 11:59:59 on December 31, 2016. It ain’t happening. Not even by 2020. Not with your beloved illegal immigrants tripling in count to provide labor. As of today, it’s tough to imagine anyone, even Dinah, working on the railroad all the live long day. In fact Kristina Egan is now mentioning something about 2017. It is unravelling fast now.
So yeah, I’m also ticked off that we on the south coast helped to pay for bloated salaries and pensions for the MBTA and for the rail extensions to already existing lines between Worcester (Tim Murray’s hometown) and Boston, and even out of state commuter rail from Boston to Warwick, RI and Plaistow, NH before we have one here in SE Massachusetts. However, everyone should be pissed at yet another hollow and intentional lie which is that New Bedford and Fall River will see rail. The continued ruse came as late as yesterday when the Patrick Administration offered yet another carrot in front of the horse. “A significant” announcement by Lt. Governor Tim Murray from Taunton, Ma came at a 12:30 news conference. Ready? (drum-roll..) The region will get $320k to study the “growth impact” of South Coast Rail in each municipality. Wow. I guess that proves it. Chomp at that same carrot and miss another bite. You’ll never eat it south coast residents.