The great flood of 2015 serves as a dramatic example of shortsighted policies of so many of our state politicians. For years the state inspection of the 2,300 most at-risk dams was funded at little more than $100 per year per dam. Even when deficiencies were found, enforcement was lax. Saying we can’t afford better care of our infrastructure is like saying I can’t afford to put oil in my car, but I’ll drive it anyway.
This is only one of many shortsighted policies.
Underfunding road and bridge repairs is obvious. But all increases in expenditures the governor and Legislature have recommended are hundreds of millions of dollars less than what is required to bring our roads and bridges up to acceptable standards.
Our schools are shortchanged every year by several hundred dollars per pupil below even the minimum amount required by our own state law. Yet our state leaders are willing to spend millions defending against lawsuits designed to force them to obey their own laws and their constitutional responsibility.
Our “leaders” must lead. They must explain to their constituents why money must be spent on education and infrastructure if our state is to progress and our people prosper.