Monday, December 13, 2010

Chair of Minnesota High-Speed Rail Commission Lobbied for Personal Rapid Transit

MNObserver has a good post on The Cucking Stool about the consequences of the Wisconsin's Governor-elect Scott Walker decision to opt out of the Upper MIdwest high speed rail network.

Having campaigned on a platform of jobs, jobs, jobs, Wisconsin's Governor-elect Scott Walker has taken steps - even before he has been sworn in - that have driven a private manufacturing employer from the state, has eliminated 4,700 short term jobs, and cost hundreds of permanent jobs...

Walker's decision, of course had consequences for Minnesota. Kevin Giles at the Strib::

About $1.2 billion in federal money had been reserved for high-speed projects in Wisconsin and Ohio. The U.S. Department of Transportation on Thursday awarded those funds to 13 other states -- but not Minnesota -- because Republican governors-elect in Wisconsin and Ohio had promised to kill the projects despite years of planning to build a network of faster trains in the Midwest.

The Wisconsin segment that lost funding -- $810 million from Milwaukee to Madison -- was one of 25 "alignments" under consideration in a Minnesota study to determine the best route to Chicago and what it would cost, Krom said.

The preferred route will be named when the study is completed in June 2012. But "when it gets built is another issue," he said.


Jerry Miller, who chairs the Minnesota High-Speed Rail Commission, expressed disappointment that Wisconsin Gov.-elect Scott Walker opposed the project.

"Connecting our region by high-speed rail will create 15,000 new jobs and economic opportunities for years to come," Miller, who is also mayor of Winona, Minn., said Friday. "By shifting this funding to places like Washington, California and Florida, we are also exporting future private-sector job growth to our neighbors and making the region less competitive."

Both Miller and Krom said they would work with Minnesota Gov.-elect Mark Dayton to seek his support for the rail line.

As Chair of the MN HSR Commission, how hard did Jerry Miller lobby his fellow Republicans in Minnesota and Wisconsin? Did Mayor Miller lobby as hard for HSR as he did for Personal Rapid Transit?

There is no doubt the substantial time Miller spent lobbying for PRT was a total waste. The $25 million earmark he requested for PRT was rejected by Rep. Tim Walz. A Federal grant for the pod project was rejected. A pod funding bill, lacking support from leaders in the legislature, didn't get to first base.

Unlike HSR, the funding for PRT wasn't there.

Here is a video of Mayor Miller wasting everyone's time promoting fantasy-based pod transport instead of reality-based conventional transportation from Winona 360:

Reporter Megan McNulty interviews Winona City Manager Eric Sorenson and Mayor Jerry Miller on their thoughts about the proposed plans for a Personal Rapid Transit model of transportation in Winona.

The headlines again...

Masdar and Heathrow PRT Still Not Happening.

The Pawlenty administration wasted at least $150,000 on personal rapid transit .

PRT Conference Newsletter & Website Features PRT Plan by Convicted Felon.

PRT is so not happening at Heathrow.

Daventry says "Pods Off!".

Video: Bill James Pitches Jpods Resolution to Hennepin County.

Federal Funding Nixed for Winona Personal Rapid Transit Project

Minnesota legislators tell pod people not to expect funding from the state at dismal MnDOT "workshop".

Taxi 2000 lobbyist and Bachmann pal Ed Cain also lobbied for the phony U.S. Navy Veterans Association charity.

ULTra PRT Heathrow Debut Postponed a Fourth Time.

No $25 million earmark for PRT pork project in Winona, Minnesota.

The Swedish/Korean PRT prototype malfunctioned recently in front of the media.

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