Senator Jones' Christmas Gift To You - TOLL ROADS
Whatever happened to the simplicity in the practice of government projects being funded by taxpayers and private projects funded by private monies?
Not long ago, there was an invisible wall of separation between the two that the majority of us inherently knew was proper and fair. We trusted people as elected leaders we thought had good character and would empathize with their constituents and respect our consent.
Well, that is no longer. It’s been a yearlong effort of try and try again that finally paid off for the progressive, Michigan Senators passing Bill SB 627 http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2015-2016/billengrossed/Senate/pdf/2015-SEBS-0627.pdf that authorizes expansive government / private, team project “partnerships” and “agreements” along with tax abatements for them too.
Please take special note when reading the Bill that “partnerships” can mean just about anything; “agreements” are legal and binding.
Just giving big-box chains and foreign manufacturing firms, long term tax abatements to do business and employ in Michigan wasn’t enough. No, now they need to partner with and enter into agreements with road builders, developers and more.
For example; Republican Senator, Rick Jones who voted “yes” on this Bill would be an exemplary politician for the utter, bigoted disrespect, contrary representation, cronyism and insatiable taxation schemes we are all sick of from our political representatives who continue to insult us with known falsehoods as claimed truth to our face.
He would much rather you pay attention to his noble and heroic, “Nativity Scene Duties” on the front lawn of the Capitol than what he’s doing inside when voting.
Don’t think it’s just Republicans doing this, folks. All but one Senate Democrat voted for this as well.
Here’s the roll call vote: http://www.michiganvotes.org/RollCall.aspx?ID=735386
Oh, there’s more-
Yes, hospitals, transportation projects including any associated buildings, maybe a stadium here or there. Oh, did I mention it opens the doors to authorize toll roads in Michigan? And if you own property that a developer “needs” in the creation of a certain project, well, they can take that too, through eminent domain law.
You can read it for yourself in the Senate Bill analysis: http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2015-2016/billanalysis/Senate/pdf/2015-SFA-0627-B.pdf
This is the House summary: http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2015-2016/billanalysis/House/pdf/2015-HLA-0627-20975AE5.pdf
Here is a little snippet from the official summary about toll roads:
“To the extent that the bill includes transportation projects within the definition of eligible projects, authorizes the use of user fees for eligible projects, and authorizes the use of user fee revenue as a pledge to issue bonds for eligible projects, the bill would appear to authorize toll roads.”
Oh, and to top it off, the State of Michigan does not have to go with the lowest bid. No, those in charge can choose who they want to for whatever justifications they need because they expect those who are chosen to be known in the future as “reliable donors” to political coffers.
When the project is complete a part of those “user fees” that will be collected as profit are then expected to be funneled back, freshly laundered as political donations to complete the circle of corruption.
You will indirectly be forced to contribute, like it or not and probably to people you like or not as well. This is why both Republicans and Democrats are on board for this. See how this scheme can work? No matter if our future toll roads are privatized or operated by government, have no doubt; it’s all about “a piece of the action”.
Oversight should be kept to a bare minimum but the position of government’s involvement with business should be to stay out of it. No favoritism, no grants, no corporate welfare. None.
As a footnote; there is an ideology associated with this “blended structure” of public and private governance that our Michigan Senate has now voted in favor of. Circa 1940, it was imposed and tried by a infamous Italian despot and he coined the name of it, “corporatism”, better known to us now as Fascism.
In some places around the globe, Fascism is still imposed to the detriment of the citizens that are plunged into poverty, suffering and subservience to the oppression of corrupt corporate and governmental powers that partner in a symbiosis to rule and control them. Something I think that all people, especially Michiganders can do without.