Monday, October 27, 2008

Say 'NO' more debt for PA

The Letter to the Editor below was originally published in The Mercury. The Montgomery County writer urges fellow Pennsylvania residents to carefully consider whether they want to give Gov. Ed Rendell more money to spend by approving a referendum question on Nov. 4 to allow the stat to borrow $400 million for water/sewer projects.

Since Rendell took office in 2003, the General Fund budget has risen by $7 billion and state borrowing has increased by another $3 billion. Rendell wants more money to hand out. I say NO!
Should Pa. go deeper in debt?

When you enter the voting booth on Nov. 4, you will not only be selecting leaders but also asked to say “yes” or “no” to a $400 million indebtedness. If approved, the money will be used to support water and sewage systems assistance in Pennsylvania. This referendum is no different than most in the past as it is poorly advertised and catches voters at a vulnerable time in the voting booth.

At present, there are approximately 2,000 drinking water systems in Pennsylvania and about 1,000 waste water systems. It is estimated that it would take in excess of $18 billion to bring all these systems up to par, so the $400 million is only a drop in the bucket (no pun intended).

At the federal level, there has been much discussion on funding the entire U.S. infrastructure as it would certainly provide lots of jobs and help jump start a sagging economy.

The state budget, passed only weeks ago, is already showing signs of program cuts and eliminations due to projected deficits in income next year. We need to give careful consideration to this question as most assuredly we need help with this infrastructure, but is it time to just put on a Band-aid?


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