Your STAB! Moment of the Day

The first two government entities to go if I were elected Governor? The PLCB and the Turnpike Commission.

If I became Governor of Pennsylvania and was told on Day 1 that I could snap my fingers and eliminate two of Pennsylvania’s government entities, I wouldn’t even have to think.

Snap. Snap. So long Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board and so long the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission.

I mean, they literally make me stabby. Literally. For instance, when I read about how the PLCB spent money on passive-aggressive wine kiosks that have been billed as "the worst wine idea of the year," and about how the Turnpike spent money on TV spots, I want to go to my kitchen, find a sharp knife, and render my couch cushions into useless shreds of fluff.

Thanks to a new rate increase going into effect January 1, the Pennsylvania Turnpike will be the most expensive toll road to travel on in the entire United States. Even New Jersey will be cheaper than the 8.5 cents per mile we Pennsylvanians will be paying, up from 7.7 we’re paying right now. EZ Pass users will get a discount, but not enough of one to make it less expensive than any other road in the nation.

This news wouldn’t make me so stabby if I didn’t read things like this from 2008: While Mr. Brimmeier gets $187,639 to manage a 530-mile toll road system, Pennsylvania Transportation Secretary Allen Biehler is paid $131,517 to manage a 40,000-mile highway system with 25,000 bridges.

Almost $190,000 to manage one toll-road. Ed Rendell manages the entire State of Pennsylvania for $175,000, give or take.

Stab.

I read about pay-to-play politics going on at the Turnpike with relatives getting hired to lucrative positions, and I read about how the Turnpike Commission is the subject of both an FBI investigation and a grand jury investigation and again …

Stab.

Turnpike toll collectors can make upwards of $20 an hour to take tolls. They have fully paid health insurance plans and guaranteed job security. And they’re not even making hamburgers in those booths! They’re not driving commuters around in those booths! They’re just taking money and making change. And I missing something? Am I the only one that doesn’t understand how making change is worth being paid $20 an hour BEFORE overtime?

This is incredibly wasteful.

I can fix this.

What needs to happen is the job of collecting tolls needs to come on par with the job of being a cashier. That means it needs to be minimum wage and it needs to be one of those jobs that teens get to make the money they need to buy their first car.

I’m totally serious.

No high wages. No guaranteed job security. No fancy schmancy fully paid health insurance. No pensions.

Just teens doing what teens often do in their jobs. Make change, give you a half-hearted smile, and watch the clock until they can punch out and go hang out with their friends.

Imagine how much would be saved on payroll costs, health insurance, etc.

I can fix this.

I just need to be elected Governor. My campaign slogan will be "Government Waste: STAB!"

Categories: PittGirl