Wednesday, June 9, 2010

PGA-only interchange on I-43 - your money at work

When people complain about things like bike and pedestrian facilities, or the cost of building or maintaining transit systems - including local and intercity rail - I shake my head. These people rarely have any idea how much of their tax dollars are spent to build and maintain the roads they drive on every day.

Even worse are people who say, "I'll never use that [path, bus line, train, station, etc.], so I shouldn't have to pay for it."

Well, here's something I can guarantee you I will never use, and yet my tax dollars are paying for it. The PGA tournament and Whistling Straits course in Kohler apparently has enough political pull to get their own private interchange, open only a few weeks of the year, and only every five year. Seriously?! This is what the Wisconsin DOT has as a priority? The Zoo Interchange is falling apart, the bridge between MN and WI at Winona has new cracks [although that's MNDOT's problem], Mike Sheridan wants a bigger I-39/90 to Beloit, and they are building an interchange for the golf fans?

Cost, shared by the Kohler Co. and you, the Wisconsin taxpayer: $671,000. How much is your share?