Want to relieve traffic congestion? Stop funding pork barrel and prioritize transportation projects that... (drum roll)... relieve traffic congestion.
Mr. Utt explains that voters just don't have confidence in their government to spend tax dollars wisely or effectively to create better transportation systems.
With the economy deteriorating and voters pressed by worsening employment prospects and escalating gas prices, opposition to pointless tax increases will stiffen. Perhaps elected officials may finally realize that the opposition to higher taxes stems more from a reluctance to pay Neiman Marcus prices for Dollar Store products than from any particular ideological objection to paying for transportation services.
Unless federal, state, and local officials take steps to improve management of transportation operations and restore voter confidence, voter skepticism will persist as congestion and safety standards worsen.
His suggestions, including conducting an independent audit, performing an independent performance assessment and actually implementing recommendations, are critical to truly fixing our transportation systems. Definitely worth a read.