Friday, May 22, 2009

A tale of one plan ...

I wanted to repeat a point I made yesterday. It is hard for me to find the language that gets across just how much a favor the Act 47 team did Mayor Luke Ravenstahl with the timing of their new five year plan. Ravenstahl, predictably, is already making noises like he is pretending to resist whole hardily embracing the new plan, but in the end in makes no difference. He has no choice.

I have just started looking for a copy of this report. It is apparently 290 pages long, so it might take a competent lawyer a little while to get through (especially if they could get $500 an hour), and it might take a dumbass like me much longer. But I would like the opportunity to try. We citizens can hardly be expected to assist our legislators in the business of running the government if we can’t see the documents from which they work. 290 pages is a tall order for a pdf, but in this day and age of 10’s, 100’s and even 1000’s of megabit bandwith and 16 gigabyte flash drives available for as little as twenty dollars, there is just no excuse for not making it available. The thing was typed up on a computer, and these days it must be almost cheaper to distribute the thing on a flash drive than to print it (considering how often our big printer breaks down at work, it might be cheaper when you take into account the service calls). But Google and a visit to the State DCED web page have failed me so far.

I suggested yesterday that the new plan is less ambitious than Bill Peduto’s proposal, and I stand by that, but … I have to admit the new Act 47 plan anticipates a lot of changes in State legislation. Dan Frankel, a Squirrel Hill State Representative, predicts the Allegheny County delegation in state government might oppose parts of this new plan. If you can’t get your own local people on your side in the State legislature, how can you expect help from Crawford or Lawrence county reps, or anyone else across the State.

A lot of people, local and state-wide, have an interest in opposing this plan, which most of us haven’t even had the chance to see yet. Gonna be an interesting June ‘round here.

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