So we've finally been able to use federal money that has been set aside for public transit in Milwaukee. I am truly excited about this, but one thing that is interesting is how it was accomplished – via earmarks.
According to the Journal Sentinel, our Senator Herb Kohl (which is responsible for keeping the Milwaukee Bucks in Milwaukee - so kudos to that!) and Representative David Obey "quietly inserted the provision" into the federal transit bill that passed today. I read this to mean earmarks.
Earmarks have truly been getting quite a bit of negative press lately. And to be honest, I have fallen into the hype of it all and have agreed that they should not be allowed as add-ons to bills, without appropriate review and approval. I have to admit, this particular earmark makes me happy. It has also made me ponder if there are appropriate times for earmarks. I think I’m back on the fence about this one.
Regardless – Milwaukee is getting street cars, bring us closer to mass transit options and making Milwaukee a more accessible city to get around in without the use of cars. YEAH!