Block the Busway picks up momentum

June 24, 2011

Sen. Joe Markley (R-Southington) and Rep. Whit Betts (R-Bristol) host a town hall meeting on the state’s plan to build a $573 million busway.

West Hartford, CT – Dozens of people packed a meeting room at West Hartford’s town hall Thursday evening to hear more about the half-billion dollar New Britain to Hartford Busway project.

“The turnout is great. The more people learn about this boondoggle, the less they like it,” said Senator Joe Markley. “At nearly a thousand dollars an inch, this is the most preposterous waste of state money I have ever seen.”

Senator Markley (R- Southington) and Representative Whit Betts (R-Bristol) hosted a meeting to inform people about the busway project, after learning there were a number of communities upset the project was going forward.

“It is unbelievable the amount of money being wasted on a project that isn’t necessary,” said Representative Betts. “When taxpayers hear their money is being used to pay for a 9 mile busway route that will cost over $60 million a mile they are outraged. They say this project makes no sense at all, and they are urging us to fight hard to defeat this proposal.”

During the meeting, Mike Nicastro, President of the Central Connecticut Chambers of Commerce, presented a detailed argument against the busway. Nicastro told the audience the $573 million project is a little over 9 miles long and half the route travels through swamp land and cemeteries.

“Not exactly prime real estate for economic growth,” Senator Markley added.

Fifty people signed on to a petition in favor of stopping the busway in its tracks. The lawmakers will host more town hall meetings in the coming weeks and are in talks with Speaker of the House John Boehner about pulling federal funds from the project.

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