A transit advocate reacts to Milwaukee Democrat Gwen Moore’s unsuccessful attempt in Congress to block the Kenosha-Racine-Milwaukee rail proposal until her county’s bus system is secure. Kerry Thomas of Transit Now considers Moore an ally of transit but says the Congresswoman may be misinformed.
Thomas says funding sources of the commuter line differ from that which buses receive. She says KRM dollars would come from federal, state and local shares which would stem from the Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Transit Authority (SERTA) who governs the proposed train.
Thomas says it’s important to see the big picture in dealing with transit in southeast Wisconsin. “We need to think about how we can create the network that makes it all work together and come up with something that is comprehensive.”
The Milwaukee County bus system faces a $10 million shortfall next year. Moore’s concern of the train being prioritized over the buses echoes the opinions of County Chairman Lee Holloway and County Supervisor Michael Mayo. Holloway and Mayo casted the dissenting votes as fellow SERTA members approved a plan to ask federal officials for preliminary engineering for the commuter rail.
Fiscal conservatives have opposed the proposed KRM citing a lack of rider interest and the potential for new taxes.