Senator Joe Markley (R-Southington) released the following statement today re: an amendment to stop the New Britain to Hartford Busway and transfer funding to the Department of Transportation to improve deficient state roads and bridges.
“The issue is: is this the right priority for spending in Connecticut? I think it’s irresponsible for us, whatever the political pressures that are on us to spend money on this 9.4 mile busway boondoggle.
“The cost is approximately $567 million about $1,000 per inch, $60 million per mile. The estimated deficit to the state for operating costs is about $22 million annually.
“Of the 5,250 highway bridges in the state of Connecticut it is estimated that nearly 1,800 are either structurally deficient or functionally obsolete. The state has at least seven bridges that are more than 100 years old and thousands of bridges have far exceeded their life spans.
“This money could be better spent by fixing deficient bridges around the state including those in Hartford, New Haven, Waterbury, Bridgeport and Stamford.
“The route would run 20 buses per hour 21 hours a day from 4:30 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. People don’t want this busway to nowhere. The legislators who agree with Governor Malloy and who today voted to spend all of this taxpayer money on this boondoggle will own this project for the rest of their political careers.”
The vote was 19 to 15 with two Democrats absent and Democrat Paul Doyle of Wethersfield joining with Republicans against the busway.