Thursday, September 20, 2007
Way to stick your neck out there, Norm.
A Senate committee chairwoman challenged the secretary of transportation's assurance Thursday that the country does not face a transportation safety crisis in the wake of last month's deadly collapse of an interstate bridge in Minneapolis.
"How can you say that everything is rosy when 13 people died?" Sen. Barbara Boxer, a California Democrat, asked Transportation Secretary Mary Peters. "I don't get it," Boxer said.
She reiterated her argument -- made at a House Transportation Committee hearing two weeks ago -- that the solution to fixing bridges is better spending priorities, not more money. Boxer said she doesn't support raising the gas tax, but she pressed Peters (Tran. Secretary) on how to come up with funding to fix the nation's bridges. She complained that the Bush administration is quick to spend money on Iraq, but when it comes to U.S. transportation and infrastructure, "we have to 'prioritize,' " Boxer said.
Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., said he and Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., have asked the congressional Government Accountability Office to do a review of the national bridge program. "We need to look at all options, but I think it is important that we start by analyzing the shortfalls of our current program," he said.
Posted by Mnmom