Friday, October 9, 2009

What Else You're Rejecting

While our friends at COAST were too busy looking up Playhouse Disney videos on youtube, we, the citizens against antiquated, stupid thinking, were thinking over the broad reaching effects and consequences of Issue 9. Even if you're not in favor of the streetcar plan, you should be opposed to Issue 9. Why? Because Issue 9 affects ALL passenger rail in Cincinnati, not just the streetcar. While COAST continues to try and mislead voters into thinking this charter amendment would "reject the streetcar" as they say, CAAST would like to show you what else you would be "rejecting:"

- The proposed American high speed rail network, currently undergoing preliminary planning and research by the Federal Government. This would link Cincinnati in a hub with Chicago, Columbus, Indianapolis, Cleveland and other major cities. Not if you vote 'yes' on 9 though!

- The proposed "3C corridor" linking Cincinnati, Dayton, Columbus and Cleveland would give these cities a head start on high speed rail and create jobs as seen in the chart below. Not if you vote 'yes' though! Yes on 9, means NO on jobs.

- The Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana (OKI) Regional Council of Governments has called passenger rail transit an "absolute necessity" for improving our current transportation needs. At the center of their proposed 2030 plan, Cincinnati. If Issue 9 were to pass though, the whole project would be stalled throughout all states, counties, municipalities etc. while Cincinnati holds a taxpayer funded special election to determine whether or not to spend money on the project, regardless of where that money comes fro, whether it be federal, state or local funds. The city of Cincinnati would have veto power over stalling an entire regional rail plan like the one seen below.

- The never completed Cincinnati Subway would be an integral part of the above OKI regional rail plan. In 2008 a study by the URS corporation found these tunnels to be in a "good" condition and suitable for use by light rail. If the plan were to go forward, utilizing these tunnels could save millions upon millions in construction and tunneling costs. However, if Issue 9 passes, these tunnels could remain empty, never fufilling their intended purpose.

- The Riverfront Transit Center below 2nd. Street was built during the reconstruction of Fort Washington Way. Currently, the center is only open to house charter buses during large downtown events. If fully activated, the transit center would serve as the central hub for regional rail and could easily be modified to accomidate all types of commuter rail, again like the subway, saving millions up millions in construction costs. The resources are already there! A vote of 'yes' on 9 means yes on wasting taxpayer money by never fully utilizing our own resources to their vast potential.

- The ballot language of Issue 9 prohibits the "construction of improvements for passenger rail transportation" So if the city wanted to improve the handicapped access of Union Terminal, which is the current station for our Amtrak Cardinal Line passenger rail, they would have to tell handicapped citizens to wait until a tax payer funded special election is held on the issue or for the next election day to roll around.

- Lastly, you might think we're joking. Unfortunatley we're not. The train at the Cincinnati Zoo would even fall under the broad language of the Issue 9 ammendment. Cincinnati Enquirer columnist Barry Horstman was the first to bring this to light, and if you don't believe it, you can read COAST's own ballot language for yourself. Yes, even the children's train at the zoo would be affected!

As you can see, while COAST may claim that a vote of 'yes' on Issue 9 is a vote to 'reject the streetcar,' you're really being tricked into voting for a rejection on all passenger rail, keeping Cincinnati out of important regional and national projects. The Cincinnati Enquirer even called Issue 9 a "Poison Pill" for Cincinnati. Democrats, Independents, Republicans, the AFL-CIO, the Cincinnati Enquirer Editorial Board and many, many more have all come out and endorssed "Cincinnatians For Progress," in opposition of Issue 9.

COAST's special interest trick is just absurd. Don't be fooled into thinking that Issue 9 is just about the streetcar project, it's about much, much more. It's broadly worded language features a whole swath of consequences as seen here.

In 20 days, on November 3., say NO to special interest controlling our city and say NO TO ISSUE 9!



  1. What frustrates me is that COAST is acting like a two yr old who can't get it's way. Instead of actually talking facts and having a debate they use belittling language like "choo choo" to make the issue look stupid. They don't mention anything other than the streetcar and more recently the zoo train (because it seems stupid to them). I wish lived in town so I could vote against it.

  2. @ Tony B: I'm sure COAST wishes they could live in town so they could vote against it, too.

  3. The CAVE men are smarter than everyone else, even their leaders in Washington.

    Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, Republicans had this to say;

    we are on the verge of a new era for high-speed rail in this country, because the United States is a third world country when it comes to high-speed transportation.


    we cannot take the funding to be invested in high-speed rail – $8 billion in stimulus funds, $50 billion in the pending surface transportation bill ... giving them anything less than true high-speed rail service.