----- Original Message -----From: ALTMAN.THAD.WEBTo: 'Lindy'Sent: Friday, March 04, 2011 11:36 AMSubject: RE: High speed rail
Thank you for contacting my office with your concerns about high speed rail.
With the current state of our economy, my number one priority is putting Floridians back to work. The high speed rail project will create thousands of jobs and spur future economic growth. The federal government has already allocated these funds for high speed rail. If Florida rejects these funds they will NOT be returned to taxpayers in a refund check or used to pay down the federal deficit; they will instead be spent building infrastructure in other states, creating jobs in other states, and otherwise stimulating the economies of other states. Florida’s high speed rail funding application was the strongest in the nation, and investing this money here in Florida is the wisest and most responsible use of these tax dollars. The high speed rail project will create 24,000 direct jobs, and over 40,000 direct and indirect jobs. This infusion of jobs will lead to economic growth that will enable us to continue to cut taxes for Floridians.
I believe in the ingenuity of Floridians and the ability of the free market private sector to develop innovative solutions when presented with an opportunity as great as the development of a high speed rail network in Florida. This infrastructure network presents tremendous opportunity for future economic growth. It is critical Florida accept the federal funds we have been awarded, and not let tax dollars be spent in another state on a project less meritorious than Florida’s high speed rail project.
Under Article III of the Florida Constitution, the power to appropriate funds, which necessarily includes the appropriation of federal funds, resides in the legislature, and the Governor cannot usurp this power short of a constitutional amendment. By rejecting the receipt of previously appropriated federal funding, the Governor has tread on the legislature’s authority and overstepped the constitutional authority granted to the executive branch. I believe in the sanctity of our Constitution, which clearly establishes three separate, co-equal branches, and states that no person belonging to one branch shall exercise powers appertaining to either of the other two branches. This is among the foremost important principles of our representative democracy.
I agree with many of Governor Scott’s policies, and I share his enthusiasm for putting Floridians back to work and growing our state’s economy. I disagree with his efforts to exceed his constitutional authority as the Executive Officer of our state by rejecting federal monies that have been previously appropriated by the Legislature in an attempted post-hoc veto of an appropriation, simply because he does not agree with federal directives on how this money is to be spent.
Please know that I have chosen to file this petition to the Supreme Court as a private citizen and not in my official capacity as a State Senator. I have consulted with my personal attorney in this matter, who has volunteered his time to conduct the legal research and prepare the necessary motions to petition the court, just as any citizen of our state has the constitutional right and duty to do.
Again, thank you for taking the time to contact me about this important issue. Whether you agree or disagree with me about the implications of high speed rail for the state of Florida, it is my hope that you have as much respect for our Constitution as I do. It is time now for our third branch of government to carry out its constitutional function, and I will await the Supreme Court’s decision.
From: Lindy [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Wednesday, March 02, 2011 11:13 PM
Subject: High speed rail
I do not appreciate, understand, nor support your law suit against Gov. Rick Scott re.: high speed rail in FL. Do you not understand that in order to GIVE $2.4 Billion to FL the federal government must first TAKE $2.4 Billion? That's money out of OUR pockets. Yes, some of it would come back to it, but if we teach the federal government not to do this kind of thing in the first place, by not accepting the money, then maybe they'd stop TAKING so much!
It's like the monkeys who were offered cocaine or a chance to be with other monkeys. Before they tried the cocaine, the monkeys always wanted to interact with other monkeys. Once the cocaine was tried, they kept opting for the cocaine and didn't want to spend time with their friends. The cocaine in this story is the money the federal government takes from us and is "giving" us for high speed rail. It's not good for us because it costs us more in the long run than it's worth, it will mean more taxpayer dollars than predicted, promised or "horns waggled" (it always does) and it will not deliver on its promises of jobs, and an improved economy until much later. After all, the plans must be done, the land must be purchased (the clearances and right of ways as well), the clearing, filling, leveling, environmental impact mitigation must be done, and all of that before the real work starts. By then our economy will be so tanked that this whole thing will be abandoned due to higher costs (our resources are being relegated to foreign countries, our oil drilling rights removed by obama, and our work ethic and work force are either next to nil or will be by the time this thing gets actually started) and that $2.4 Billion taxpayer dollars that didn't have to come out of our pockets will be gone. It will have disappeared faster than a donut at a RNC morning meeting.
Altman, I am ashamed of you for your lawsuit. You represent me in districting only: definitely not in this. You are in the wrong, and Gov. Scott is in the right. Drop this lawsuit because it makes you look foolish, greedy, and so much MORE like a RINO than anything you've done since you were a Brevard County Commissioner. Yes, I lived here then and I still think this could be one of the worst things you have ever done. Surprising, no?
Constituent in District Only
Remember: If the City/County/State/Nation can do it to your fellow citizen, they can do it to you, too. Stand up for your neighbor, because if you don't, the City/County/State/Nation will come for you next.
Remember: Anyone who does not give you a wake-up call when they see you being stupid, self-destructive, or both, just plain doesn't care about you. It's those of us who do wake you up who care.