Ald. Bob Donovan
Press Release

Alderman Donovan to announce new efforts in fight against streetcar

Alderman Bob Donovan will hold a news conference at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow (Thursday, August 16) to announce new efforts in his bid to derail the proposed downtown streetcar project.

By - Aug 15th, 2012 04:32 pm

Alderman Bob Donovan will hold a news conference at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow (Thursday, August 16) to announce new efforts in his bid to derail the proposed downtown streetcar project. The news conference – to be held in the third floor Council Chamber anteroom at City Hall (200 E. Wells St.) — will include Brett Healy of the John K. MacIver Institute of Public Policy, and Luke Hilgeman from Americans for Prosperity Wisconsin.

Alderman Donovan said the news conference will include details about a new online petition option that will broaden the ability for those who are opposed to the project to sign on. He said the name of the website for the online petition option is called “A Streetcar named Disaster.”

“We already have more than 3,000 signatures on (hard copy) petitions in opposition to the streetcar, and this online form will allow a much wider group of people who also are frustrated by this ridiculous waste of public money to indicate their opposition,” he said.

According to Alderman Donovan, Mr. Healy will discuss the recent MacIver Institute report that debunked the “myth” held by streetcar advocates that the project will lead to increased development along the downtown route. “We’ve looked at both Milwaukee’s history with streetcars as well as the impact similar new projects have had in other cities and the fact of the matter is the promised benefits never materialize unless further expensive subsidies are imposed,” Mr. Healy said. “Our comprehensive research is free from the spin and PR efforts of the streetcar proponents and shows that this is a dubious public investment.”

Alderman Donovan is also continuing his call for a public referendum on the streetcar project, stating that he is convinced that 70% of city residents don’t support the project. He has proposed using the $65 million in federal money for the streetcar project to rebuild crumbling city streets – something he said that could potentially create up to 1000 jobs.

Alderman Donovan said his effort to derail the streetcar is an attempt to bring common sense to the fore. “While Milwaukee continues to face major economic and other challenges, why are we even discussing this massive boondoggle of a project?” he asked.

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