Pfeifer: Brown wrong, never for mass transit

This is a response to Steve Brown’s article in last week’s Citizen.

I did recently call Mr. Brown, and left him a message on his answering machine after a previous column. That was to correct his statements about which commissioners are up for re-election this year. Lee Hearn is not.

I think that this latest column requires this written response because I am named specifically and I don’t want false information about me out in public without making an effort to correct it.

My letter is a lot shorter now that I’ve cut out all the personal comments about Mr. Brown and cut out my responses to the insults of me by Mr. Brown.

So, I’ll just correct his statements about the County Commission I served on and his comments about me and mass transit.

The commission I served on voted one time on one issue regarding mass transit. The vote was 5-0 to turn down an offer from GRTA regarding “free” buses.

That commission, and those commissioners – Greg Dunn, Linda Wells, A.G. VanLandingham, Herb Frady and I — voted against accepting those buses because we knew that the operating cost would add up over time and the “free” buses would end up costing the taxpayers of Fayette County a lot of tax dollars.

Speaking for myself, I have very strong beliefs regarding public funding of transit. I believe that tax dollars collected through gasoline, and other taxes, are for roads. I do not believe in spending any of that tax money for buses or for trains to take people to work or anyplace else.

Spending road money on non-road issues drains money from roads. That’s why there has been a shortage of money for roads. It’s been spent on other items.

I do not support spending your tax dollars on Amtrak. I do not support spending your tax dollars on MARTA. I do not support spending your tax dollars on passenger “high speed rail,” “MAGLEV” or “light rail” or “heavy rail.”

If there is a market for mass transit, fine. Let those who desire to ride a bus, ride a bus. Let those who like to ride trains live where they have trains. But, the cost should not be subsidized by their neighbors.

I hope that’s clear.

Peter Pfeifer

Peachtree City, Ga.

Steve Brown
Steve Brown's picture
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Joined: 12/02/2009
Dunn, Pfeifer : Transit

Pete Pfeifer is absolutely correct that he and his colleagues voted not to accept GRTA buses. However, my column was referring to former Chairman Dunn's approvals on the regional Transit Planning Board (TPB).

Yes, Fayette through the chairman gave approval of a TPB plan that included mass transit in Fayette County. The Citizen reported on this plan. Pfeifer did not object in any public forum to Dunn's support of the plan on behalf of Fayette County. This tacit approval is serious when you consider what is at stake.

The West Fayetteville Bypass, which the Smith administration is pushing and lacks justification for construction, was progeny of Pfeifer, Dunn and their commission. It is a $51 million black-eye for Fayette taxpayers.