Tea Party nutballs kill project worth millions to Michigan city

Here’s the Tea Party mayor on equal rights for all Americans

Officials are already doing damage control after City Council’s vote late Monday to scrap a federally funded transit center project.

Troy Chamber of Commerce President Michele Hodges says the controversial decision is causing some fallout in the business community, which was outspoken in its support for the project. The transit center would have combined train, bus, taxi and future light rail service at a three-acre site near Maple and Coolidge…

In a private email to Hodges that went viral Tuesday, Frank W. Ervin III, the manager of government affairs for Magna International Inc., thanked the chamber president for her efforts, adding it’s disappointing that Troy’s legislators are “narrow minded when it comes to the future of Troy and the future of Southeastern Michigan.”

In the email, Ervin also informed Hodges that he plans to draft a memo to all Magna group presidents and corporate executives “strongly recommending that Magna International no longer consider the City of Troy for future site considerations, expansions or new job creation.”

He added that he’ll also recommend “that where ever and when ever possible we reduce our footprint and employment level in Troy in favor of communities who act in the best interest of both the residents and business and not simply use their public position to advance their own private agenda…”

State transportation officials have said that if Troy turned down the federal funding for the transit center, it would be reallocated to another rail project, possibly in another state…

The decision to forfeit the $8.4 million in federal funds passed by a 4-3 vote after the panel listened to about 40 residents and stakeholders share their views for and against the decade-old project…

The center was to be a regional transportation hub and would be built around Birmingham’s Amtrak line and station and provide a transfer point to SMART bus service, taxis and limousines. The facility would include a bridge, elevators, four SMART bus slips and reconfiguration of 116 parking spaces behind the Midtown Square shopping center.

Construction would have required no local or state funding. Just jobs for the folks hired to buid the project – and there would have been DOT funds to aid in hiring fulltime employees after completion in 2013.

Presumably, the citizens of Troy will have sufficient sense to kick the Kool Aid Party types off the city council before then – not that it will do much good at reviving the project months down the road.

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