A few weeks ago, a City of West Bend committee held a public hearing to begin the process of gathering public input about how to prioritize and pay for transportation infrastructure needs in the city. I covered it in this post.
Now they are taking the next step by asking the public for their input via an online survey.
It is a short survey. I had a couple of thoughts after filling it out. First, it is an online survey with no security to prevent people from outside of the city from filling it out or people taking it multiple times. It’s a handy and inexpensive way to gather information, but the results should only be considered as part of a bigger picture.
Second, I notice that it asks us to rank the options in order. The three options are to (1) keep the current plan, which is to continue increasing transportation spending at a rate higher than inflation; (2) add a wheel tax or other special tax; and (3) go to referendum for a property tax increase. It does not escape my notice that there isn’t an option to either keep spending at the rate of inflation or actually decrease spending. This frames the issue as transportation infrastructure spending must increase and the only questions are how much and how will it be funded? That’s unfortunate.