16 comments

  1. fishtail says:

    so GA DOT is ONE BILLION DOLLARS short on funding for road projects spread all over our State….what a hell of an anchor to wrap around the ankles of incumbent State legislators (GOP and DEMS) in an election year. Most of these road projects have already been heralded with much local fanfare. When the list of road projects is released that will not be built, the heat will be on from dissappointed developers, real estate speculators, local officials, road contractors, etc. to such an extent that it will surely affect election results in November.

  2. Trackboy1 says:

    What in the heck does the State Transportation Board actually do? Is there a smidgen of oversight? Do they ever ask tough questions or are they too busy lobbying for every possible project in their own district? Have they ever looked into the organizational structure, or are they too busy going to retreats at fancy four star hotels sponsored by road builders and the conglomerations that want billion dollar state toll roads? Have they ever looked at best practices of other 49 state DOT’s, or are they too busy stuffing their faces on free food and booze, like at the big GA for Better Transportation soiree at the Fox a while back?

    And all the elected officials of both parties were too busy making sure they got theirs to give a damn about the waste and bloat.

    Wonder if Vance Smith would have brought the public attention to the hellhole of waste & bloat that is GDOT? Systemic failure like this needs full blown public transparency, and if long time GDOT bureaucrats and board members get embarassed, then so be it. It needed an outsider to open the can of worms.

    Freaking Harry Linnenkohl got pretty indignant when he stepped down, saying he was proud of what GDOT accomplished. Proud of wasting millions and millions of taxpayer money? This was the same clown who callously went around defending GDOT during the baseball bus crash horror saying GDOT has met minumum standards…??!!

    Who in the heck looked after our taxpayer money given to GDOT? DuBose Porter and Calvin Smyre, don’t even think about blaming it all on the Republicans, because GDOT has been broken for decades.

    Hiring Gena is going to go down as Sonny’s finest move while in office, by far. Hope he shows the guts to back her up with every single request she makes, no matter how many people it pisses off.

  3. Bobby Kahn says:

    According to press reports, the state is over-extended on bonds, which are to be paid back with federal funds. The Chairman of the State Road and Tollway Authority, which issues the bonds, should be held to account.

  4. AubieTurtle says:

    There have been four different heads of SRTA during Sonny’s time, though to be fair, the first one was a left over from the previous administration and stepped down pretty quickly. Why so much turn over and were these people qualified for the position or appointed as political favors? Does the head of SRTA have any actual authority to refuse to issue bonds for projects that GDOT has decided to build?

  5. AubieTurtle says:

    Bobby, did you mean the director of SRTA? Sonny is the chairman, though I would assume that like most boards and authorities that he chairs, that he rarely attends meetings.

  6. Bull Moose says:

    THANK GOD TSPLOST DIDN’T GET THROUGH THE LEGISLATURE.

    More money is exactly what GADOT doesn’t need right now.

  7. Bobby Kahn says:

    SRTA has authority to issue, or not issue, bonds. In fact, it has a fiduciary duty to make an independent judgment. The Chairman of SRTA, more than the staff, should be held accountable.

  8. AubieTurtle says:

    What does it mean to be over extended in this context? Were the bonds issued against the next thirty years of anticipated Federal funds but at a level that would take more then thirty years to pay off and/or at a level that requires higher payments per year than the anticipated Federal funding? In that case, I can see Bobby’s argument that SRTA should be held accountable. But if it is just a case of issuing bonds that GDOT requested and now it turns out that we’ve wastefully spent all of our money for the next few decades, well, that’s just poor planning on GDOT’s part.

    Either way, we’ve spent like drunken sailors on road projects in this state with tons of congestion in the metro areas to show for it. Most of metro Atlanta’s sprawl is built on the assumption of ever increasing spending on road capacity. If we’re already thirty plus years of spending in the hole, then get ready to see the already damaged gears of the construction industry grind to a halt. How long will someone put up with an hour plus commute each way before they figure out that the new roads aren’t coming? And when they do realize it, along with hundreds of thousands of others, what will that do to the property values and the desire to relocate away from Georgia?

    Not a pretty outlook. Even if Gina does get future spending in order, the damage has already been done.

  9. Harry says:

    “Let’s Tear Down the DOT and Start Over”

    Absolutely, and while they’re at it put all the other major state departments through the same forensic examinations, and take names.

  10. Ms_midtown says:

    Holy cow, let’s hope we’re not on the verge of a Georgia credit crisis.

    Perdue says “an inclusive, collaborative process over the next few months involving lawmakers, DOT officials, the Get Georgia Moving Coalition and numerous other groups”
    Been there, done that, didn’t work.

    Get centralized authority in there with experienced government auditors,
    and don’t fire the little guy.

  11. Chris says:

    No.

    We need Purges!

    Bloody Purges!

    Violent Bloody Purges! With Indictments!

    Starting with the Ass-wipe speaker who opposed Gena’s appointment.

  12. fishtail says:

    Pardon me for the sick humor, but when I saw Sonny, Glenn, and Casey on the news last night I couldn’t help but think of the 3 STOOGES…there they were, trying to explain away their involvement (or non-involvement as to Sonny) with the KeyStone Cops known as the 2008 session of the General Asxsembly. Basically, they now are saying it’s a good thing that the crisis of Georgia’s transportation issues were not addressed this year because they just found out that they are a BILLION dollars short. Oh, the wisdom of these 3 dunces.

  13. The Comma Guy says:

    GBA’s plan is to do just as suggested. If they get their way, the DOT building will be bulldozed.

    As to the issue at hand, I think that the DOT was used as a bottomless piggy bank to support pet road projects with no oversight or accountability for a long time. We’re just now finding out about it.

    Dr. Abraham was a great move. Hopefully she’s got enough protection to keep bringing the bad news.

  14. Rick Day says:

    I’ll pile it on. Fault lies at feet of our elected officials who did not practice due diligence when they voted AYE on DOT projects.
    If anyone took so much as a McMeal from the road thugs, they should be jailed as well.

    Culpability shared by any un-elected official who was schmoozed wined or dined by same road thugs.

    Guilty. Fired.

    So fired!

  15. IndyInjun says:

    Normally, I make no excuse nor take any prisoners when it comes to the GOP gone wrong. This instance is very, very different. The intransigent problems, the DOT power games, and the lack off accountability predate GOP control in Georgia.

    Alas, there were elements of ‘speakership’ seemingly desirous of the rot that the Dems allowed to grow and fester, but the now GOP/former Dem governor seems determined to root out the rot.

    Take off the partisan blinders and just fix the mess.

    If there has been fraud, prosecute the perps to the maximum extent.

    Now, can the folks in the House who voted to keep Abraham be praised enough? Maybe we can vote them a Peachpundit Medal of Honor…for the children, of course.

  16. Icarus says:

    Wow, a comment on keeping things in proper perspective from Indy.

    Is today April 1st?

    The Children love April 1st…

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