Where were the plows?
Posted at 12:24 PM on February 6, 2007 by Bob Collins (1 Comments)
Today's formerly minor snowstorm has lit a fuse of anger at the Capitol today. Sen. Steve Murphy, head of the Senate Transportation Committee, held a news conference this afternoon roasting the governor and the transportation department for the poor conditions of the road. OK, I say "formerly minor snowstorm" because there was a time not long ago that the area would shake it off and get to work. Today, was another story.
"All of (Highway) 61 was just a parking lot," said Sen. Katie Sieben, DFL-Newport. "I-94 was a skating rink," said Sen. Scott Dibble.
I can't speak to the hyperbole, but during my ride in at 10, I noticed a couple of things, too: (1) a dinky little snowstorm was causing more hassle than it used to and (2) I didn't see a snowplow.
The DFLers' news conference may have been taking advantage of an opportunity to score some points, but it comes -- oddly enough -- on the heels of the comments of Sen. Tarryl Clark, DFL-St. Cloud, a little more than a week ago when she made public the fact the nomination of Lt. Gov. Carol Molnau would not be approved by the Senate (as transportation commissioner) if it ever made it to the Senate in the first place.
Looks like a battle is brewing and where a battle is brewing, there's MFL points. Look for transportation issues to suddenly get more focus at the Capitol. It's almost none so far, which is a surprise in itself.
When I was driving back to the Twin Cities from Cottonwood County about two years ago, I noticed that the Cottonwood County and Rosehill and Amo Township roads were maintained better than the state roads, so we drove on gravel roads and avoided the asphalt with the potholes. Several years ago I also had to avoid Hwy 62 crosstown so that my car wouldn't fall into the moon crater-sized potholes.
If the state is looking for a new transportation commissioner, I recommend they look in Cottonwood County or Rosehill or Amo Townships, where the condition of the roads is testimony to the competence of the transportation managers. Road maintenance is performed early on the routes traveled by school buses taking students to schools in rural areas.
Posted by Nancy G | February 6, 2007 9:39 PM