May 20 2012
Vicki E. Alger
By 2014, Congress will have spent about $800 million on grants encouraging students to walk or bike to school. The National Center for Safe Routes to School was part of the 2005 Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act (SAFETEALU) legislation.
Sponsored by Alaska Rep. Don Young, of “bridge to nowhere” fame, SAFETEALU was packed with 7,000 earmarks costing taxpayers $24 billion. Cato Institute’s Randal O’Toole summed it up as “the epitome of pork.”
Ultimately, when the people who actually earn the money are in charge of how it’s spent, they don’t get stuck paying for such nonsense. The last things parents struggling to make ends meet need is higher taxes to subsidize things like $850 bookmarks. Congress should end its billion-dollar-walkathon boondoggle, or voters should tell them to take a hike.