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Opinion By R Al Bain – Road Legislation: Lawmakers “are” the Problem
Our legislators continue taking money designated for roads and moving it to the General Fund where it gets used for a variety of non-transportation related purposes. It is difficult to justify generating new revenue for roads until they stop taking away money that should be going to roads and spending it elsewhere. Otherwise, road related taxes and fees are subsidizing other programs, and it is disingenuous to ask taxpayers for more road money when we know it will not stay there.
As an example, in Michigan the 6% sales tax on gasoline, automobiles, and automobile related accessories has recently generated $1.9 billion dollars in revenue. In other states a portion of this money goes to roads, but in Michigan none of it is earmarked for that purpose. Taxpayers rightfully expect that all the taxes they pay at the pump or their equivalent should go to transportation, especially roads.” Once again, these bills take money from roads and give it to the general fund which will necessitate a tax increase on gas down the road.”
Other examples: 2009 House Bill 5072: Transfer road tax money to other purposes (Senate Roll Call 539) Passed in the Senate on October 20, 2009, to reduce the amount of infrastructure project spending from the transportation economic development fund by $12 million in the Fiscal Year that ends Sept. 30, 2009, and another $12 million in the next fiscal year. House Bill 5073 diverts this money to other state spending.
2011 Senate Bill 411: Introduced by Sen. Randy Richardville on June 7, 2011, to revise the state road tax allocation law to accommodate the authority proposed by Senate Bill 410 to build a new bridge between Detroit and Windsor. This would rob money from our road funds for this authority.
Governor Snyder has proposed more tax revenue for roads by raising the registration fee per vehicle by as much as $120.00. Snyder also wants to change the per-gallon tax on fuel and replace it with a tax of about 6.7 percent on the wholesale price. Michigan motorists still would pay the current federal fuel tax and state sales tax when they fill up at the pump. This is a bait and switch idea because the cost to the consumer would rise with the price of fuel! It’s bad enough that every Michigan vehicle owner has to pay $145 per vehicle per year for the Michigan Catastrophic Fee.
Michigan Legislature to Vote on ObamaCare Exchange
Despite all the promises from the Republicans while on the campaign trail, the Republicans are on the verge of cementing ObamaCare in Michigan. http://paracom.paramountcommunication.com/hostedemail/email.htm?CID=10600415171&ch=4D34BF0B7490C6C1A952C793018EB037&h=3e1153dc45d0de2ed23b046a6535ac20&ei=WDgM5UTFN
Richardville & 21 Other Republicans Vote for ObamaCare Exchange
Senate Majority leader Randy Richardville and 21 other Republican Senators vote in favor of ObamaCare exchange! Eight Republican Senators voted no. How could Richardville a self proclaimed conservative vote in favor of this bill? I’ll tell you, he is no conservative but a Republican in name only (RINO)! It is a sad day in Michigan when supposedly conservative politicians vote for something like this that basically endorses Obamacare because of the contents of this bill. Re-call them and or vote them out they do not represent Conservative Republican Principles, Traditions, and Values! If the thinking is re-call better hurry because they are in Lansing as I write this introducing legislation to make it harder for citizens to re-call an elected official! http://www.michiganvotes.org/RollCall.aspx?ID=592385
Bill Banning the Use of Public Funds to Collect Union Dues Stalls in Senate
No surprise here with Senate Majority leader Randy Richardville and his Uncle Senator Roger Kahn both past proponants of this type of practice with home healthcare providers and home daycare providers through the SEIU. Proposed legislation to ban the practice of using public school resources to deduct union dues from teacher paychecks appears to be stalled in the state Senate. http://www.michigancapitolconfidential.com/16154
Michigan Senate Revives Corporate Welfare Scheme Governor Vowed to End
Just two weeks after one of the firms benefiting from a $100 million state electric car battery subsidy deal announced layoffs of 125 Michigan workers (A123 Corporation), the state Senate has authorized a $50 million deal for another electric car project (Who Voted “Yes” and Who Voted “No”). The latest combination of cash grants and tax breaks would go to a firm called Townsend Ventures, which wants to use the former Ford Motors Wixom plant to make systems related to electric cars and batteries, including the “development and installation of a cost effective, national, electric vehicle recharging system. This would be the second time the Legislature has authorized huge subsidies for an alternative energy scheme using this particular plant. In 2009, $100 million was approved for a deal that fell through earlier this year, a joint venture involving firms calling themselves “Xtreme Power” and “Clairvoyant Energy.” http://www.michigancapitolconfidential.com/16148
Ficano Wants Taxpayers to Foot Bill for Legal Costs
All Michigan Taxpayers are effected by this not just Detroit and Wayne County. Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano is so swamped with FBI subpoenas he wants taxpayers to spend nearly $400,000 for a criminal defense attorney to answer them. http://detnews.com/article/20111214/METRO01/112140355/Ficano-350K-legal-costs?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE
Michigan Taxpayers are on the Hook again for Monica Conyers’ Legal woes
It was learned Monday that the City of Detroit has agreed to settle a lawsuit that says Conyers, wife of Detroit Democratic U.S. Rep. John Conyers, had someone fired for politically opposing her when she was a city councilwoman. Wasn’t she recently on furlough (vacation) from prison here in Detroit for another legal matter? Civil matters aside, the Michigan Taxpayers also paid for Conyers’ lawyer in her criminal case where she pleaded guilty to bribery and was sentenced to 37 months in prison. Can the voters be so stupid as to re-elect her husband Detroit Democratic U.S. Rep. John Conyers who claimed he knew nothing of the corruption his “wife” was involved in? http://www.freep.com/article/20111108/NEWS01/111080350/City-agrees-cover-lawsuit-against-Conyers
Feds’ Subpoenas Target Wayne County Business Dealings
This looks like the Fed’s are digging pretty deep into this corruption which will take many of the players down along with some Lansing politicians as well. “I think it’s significant, because it means that it’s gone up another level from an FBI investigation,” said David Griem, a Detroit defense attorney and former federal prosecutor. http://www.freep.com/article/20111117/NEWS02/111170499/Feds-subpoenas-target-Wayne-County-business-dealings
U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade Offical Evidence Request http://www.freep.com/assets/freep/pdf/C41819131116.PDF
Tea Party Groups Seek Ohio ‘Right-to-Work’ Measure
Just two days after Ohio voters overwhelmingly rejected a state law curbing collective bargaining rights, a tea party coalition said it will push an amendment to the state’s constitution that would prevent workers covered by union contracts from being required to join unions or pay dues. http://www.conservativeactionalerts.com/2011/11/tea-party-groups-seek-ohio-right-to-work-measure/
Is the End Near for Comcast?
The maligned cable giant has had 443,000 more homes cancel than sign up this year and things are just going to get worse. Comcast was actually last year’s winner in Consumerist.com’s annual Worst Company in America contest. Comcast has seen 443,000 more homes cancel than sign up so far this year, and that’s after losing 757,000 accounts in 2010 after shedding 623,000 customers in 2009. http://www.dailyfinance.com/2011/11/10/why-comcast-will-never-be-great-again/?icid=maing-grid10%7Chtmlws-sb-bb%7Cdl13%7Csec1_lnk3%7C111628
The political and commercial morals of the United States are not merely food for laughter, they are an entire banquet.