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LOCAL Commentary :: Public Transportation

MoDOT can work rails; it chooses not to

Pursuant to Pete Rahn’s claim that MODoT is constitutionally prevented from funding public transportation, he’s wrong. And not just a little. Dead wrong.
He might want to consult the very brief section of the Missouri Constitution in which the People vest authority in the division he heads before speaking again. I would specifically call his attention to Article IX, Section 30(c) available online at http://www.moga.state.mo.us/const/A04030c.HTM, which states:“The highways and transportation commission shall have authority to plan, locate, relocate, establish, acquire, construct, maintain, control, and as provided by law to operate, develop and fund public transportation facilities as part of any state transportation system or program such as but not limited to aviation, mass transportation, transportation of elderly and handicapped, railroads, ports, waterborne commerce and intermodal connections, provided that funds other than those designated or dedicated for highway purposes in or deposited in the state road fund or the state road bond fund pursuant to sections 30(a) or 30(b) of this constitution are made available for such purposes.”

Now, granted, the lion’s share of MODoT’s budget derives from the state road fund, but that leave multi-millions of dollars available for deployment to non-highway activities. If Rahn wanted to spend money on public transportation, and the Governor and General Assembly’s budget funded such action, it WOULD be possible and it WOULD be legal. The question remains, then: do ANY of our elected leaders have such foresight and vision to solve transportation problems via some means other than paving?

Chris Cleeland

St. Louis
 
 

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An inglorious peace is better than a dishonorable war.
-- Mark Twain
Source: "Glances at History" (suppressed)
 

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