Wednesday, July 05, 2006

CITIES NOW HIRING LOBBYISTS --
Rebuffed on several requests for state and federal financing to help rebuild its crumbling bridge, this small resort town [Treasure Island, Florida] was all but resigned to raising the money by doubling the 50-cent bridge toll, increasing property taxes and issuing bonds.

But in a last-ditch gambit, city officials hired a federal lobbyist who had known the local congressman for four decades. Within weeks, the congressman, Representative C. W. Bill Young, called the mayor to say he had slipped a special $50 million appropriation, known as an earmark, into an omnibus bill.
Isn't this the sort of thing a community's elected representatives are supposed to do -- you know, lobby on behalf of his/her constituents?