The end of RAD as we know it: Transit is important, but the county sales tax is for other assets
There are 11 comments on the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette story from Aug 26, 2012, titled The end of RAD as we know it: Transit is important, but the county sales tax is for other assets. In it, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that:
The recent proposal, announced by Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, to tap into Regional Asset District money to fund the Port Authority will be a disaster for the RAD fund and its recipients.
Join the discussion below, or Read more at Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
#1 Aug 26, 2012
The annual funding of $3 million to the Port Authority over the next 10 years will wreak havoc with the surplus, limit inflation adjustments and ultimately affect the stability of these important assets. In the past we stabilized the annual budget with the surplus so that assets could remain fully funded. But one needs a surplus to do this. With $3 million a year to the transit system, I estimate the entire cushion will be wiped out in five to seven years.
For any asset to receive RAD support, the organization must make an annual pitch to the board, and every year they ask for more. The Port Authority will be no different. Its contract will have a minimum guarantee of $3 million annually for 10 years, but it can always ask for more. Based on my experience of increasing contractual asset funding by 2.5 percent annually, I would fully expect to see the Port Authority's RAD funding at $3.4 million in five to six years.
#3 Aug 27, 2012
PAT is a bloated, overpaid mess of an organization now.
Didnt used to be.....folks got paid fairly for a day's work and got fair benefits.
Now, people want to make a carreer out of bagging groceries at Giant Eagle, so no surprise that PAT drivers (or is it their union??) want the world given to them.
NEWS FLASH -- YOU DRIVE A BUS. A skill, yes. Brain surgery? No.
That, and the riders who do not want to pay for the service.
Why does the TAXPAYER have to pay for PAT? Make the people who USE the service PAY for the service.
Its bad enough that my tax dollars pay for some women to have several baby-daddys.....I shouldn't also have to pay to help them with the transportation to find the next one.
#4 Aug 27, 2012
The lottery proceeds pay for seniors. The PAT gets the RAD from alchohol sales taxes. Quitting going to bars for regulars would be on way. A lot of decent working people use the transportation. The Union made a lot of concessions to receive state funding. Corbett accomplished it by refusing state money unless concessions.
Corbett added the money from state is a one year agreement. Bandaid most call it. Union drivers agreed to a reduction in hours and health benefits.
Onarato made the fund from the RAD drink tax to save taxes and for transportation. The funding was for other purposes later as the fund grew. Fitzgerald made the announcement to cut the other purposes as funds deplete.
#5 Aug 28, 2012
No argument from me that "lots of decent people" use it.
But then those same people should be ready to pay more in fares to keep the convenience of the transportation.
#6 Aug 28, 2012
We need to get a PAT bus stop on Collins Street. When we do that people will stop making fun of us and want to join the Justice League.
Brother of Gtr, PAT Bus Stop Lobbyist
#8 Sep 5, 2012
The Port Authority will drain the RAD money just like they've drained every source of tax dollars that they ever tapped in to.
The crying shame of it all, it will probably take a percentage from the RAD money that has been earmarked yearly for more needy and taxpayer friendly venues.
There is a possibily that Renzie Park's allotment would be reduced.
Since: Aug 11
#9 Sep 5, 2012
The rad should be stopped totally.
#10 Sep 6, 2012
The cancer from the PAT is spreading deeper into the taxpayer's pockets!!!
Cut the less than profitable routes, require everyone to pay, and raise the fares accordingly. Businesses don't purchase items for $5.00, and sell them for $3.00 and expect the taxpayer to make up the difference in their loss. The days of the taxpayer subsidizing public transportation has to cease. The unions and management have raped the system for years. It's time the state and county investigate the purchase of $33 million in new busses when they are cutting routes, the $500 million dollar plus tunnel under the river while they are operating under a deficit, and paid up benefits for retirees and their families. There are more people collecting pensions and benefits from the PAT than are actually working because of the padded and lucrative early retirement pensions handed out.
There should be NO money dedicated from the state and county for public transportation. The money should be utilized where it is desperately needed, in the repair and rehabilitation of the roads and bridges throughout the state which are a necessary lifeline for all taxpayers and residents.
Do you realize how many roads and bridges could have been rehabilitated with the $500 million dollar plus that they utilized for a less than a mile long tunnel under the river which will never ever turn a profit, not to mention maintenence and upkeep?
The free ride is over!! They should be forced to operate within their means, or in the least a break ever point without dependency on the taxpayers.
“Obama is a Liar, Period!”
Since: Jan 07
#11 Sep 6, 2012
Makes the case again. Do not give government, or the government officials another cent. They are disloyal scoundrels. PAT deserves NOTHING.
#12 Sep 7, 2012
I don't think the residents of Allegheny County realize what is going on in this latest Port Authority saga.
First they allocate your state tax dollars to fund the PAT, secondly they allocate your county tax dollars to fund the PAT, then they instituted a 7% county drink tax to fund the PAT, now they want to take county RAD money, which is sales tax that you pay to fund the Arts and Sciences to fund the PAT.
Ultimately is appears the PAT is taking every tax dollar available to fund a bottomless pit and broken down political patronage system.
#13 Sep 7, 2012
Yes you are correct.
The above is happening because the PAT union is powerful and controls a big block of votes. The elected officials give our money away to buy the PAT votes. This is how a democracy works.
This is the same reason why MASD school crossing guards get City and MASD fully paid medical benefits. Votes, Votes, Votes and we pay!
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