Saturday, June 17, 2006

Rishell says there is no surplus

In a Potomac News Article titled "Miller takes GOP nod for 50th", they interviewed the Democrat candidate for this seat, Jeanette M. Rishell, who said this about spending some of the general fund surplus on critical transportation needs:

Instead of using what Miller said is a surplus of funds, Rishell wants to see a revenue stream dedicated to transportation.

"Miller's calling it a surplus, but it's really not," she said. "Money in the general fund is traditionally used for education, health and public safety."

Well, really, it is. We have a budget for this year, and next, and next, and the revenues we are taking in are higher than the budget allocates to spend. Meanwhile, the transportation fund is hit by a triple-whammy, as higher gas prices drive up the costs of building roads, lower use of gas cuts the money available, and people using public transportation drive up costs more (since it costs us money when people use public transportation).

Traditionally, when the transportation fund had "more than enough money", our representatives had no problem taking money from the transportation surplus and spending it on general funds. Now, they should have no problem doing the opposite.

Our taxes are taken to fund government services. Roads are a government service, and improve the common welfare for EVERY citizen of our state, even those who don't drive. So our income taxes are properly applied to the pressing needs of transportation.

But if democrats like Rishell are elected, there won't be a surplus. We won't get it back, it won't be used for transportation, it will be used as free money and frittered away, while we get hit with another billion a year in taxes for transportation before the trust fund is locked up.

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