Thursday, June 07, 2007

Coconut crashes on Don Young's head

The New York Times had a story yesterday on Representative Young's assistance in providing an earmark for one Daniel J. Aranoff, Florida real estate developer, who needed a little road built to help increase the value of his property on Coconut Road. Coincidentally, we're sure, the developer threw a fundraising party for Rep. Young, and raised $40,000 for the Midnight Sun political action committee (Young's very own)--only days before the earmark went through:
A consultant who helped push for the project spelled out why its supporters held the fund-raiser.

“We were looking for a lot of money,” said the consultant, Joe Mazurkiewicz. “We evidently made a very good impression on Congressman Young, and thanks to a lot of great work from Congressman Young, we got $81 million to expand Interstate 75 and $10 million for the Coconut Road interchange.”
The county doesn't want it, though, and the local Florida representative, Mr. Connie Mack, didn't ask for it. Environmentalists are not happy (but who cares what they think? certainly not our Donnie-boy) because it would cause problems.
the Lee County Metropolitan Planning Organization voted twice last year to block a preliminary study for the interchange, mainly on environmental grounds. Studies by the Army Corps of Engineers, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Fish and Wildlife Service and the Federal Highway Administration have all warned that the proposed interchange could threaten wetlands.
But Don Young is not to be denied. He owed a favor, and by gum, he was going to return it!
In a Jan. 23, 2006, letter to the chairman of the planning agency, Mr. Young warned that his committee would draft another bill taking away the $10 million if it was not used for the interchange.
My, my, my. And now that he's no longer chair of the Transportation Committee, his good works for the neglected developers of Florida are finally being noticed by the wrong people.

The public, that is.

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