Chesterton Tribune

Senator Tallian wrong on the South Shore

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Voice of the People

Karen Tallian’s position on the South Shore Extension is wrong. The State Legislature has a lot of gall asking retired persons on fixed income to bear the burden of paying for mass transit for those with high paying jobs in Chicago.

Chesterton and Ogden Dunes had mass transit to Chicago about 40 years ago, but they switched to autos and lost it. What guarantee does the legislature have that people will use the Westlake Extension?

The extension will use tracks of existing railroads. If the legislature had not deregulated the railroads, they would be responsible to provide this mass transit, if needed at a nominal cost.

Tallian complained that one billion dollars has already been used to repair the Borman. The damage was not caused by autos, it was caused by heavy trucks, box cars on the public roads.

The legislature made another mistake 50 years ago when they allowed the 18 wheeler box cars on the super highways. This caused many railroads to disappear from small town America and helped destroy the greatest rail system in the world.

The solution now is to move the 18 wheeler box cars off the public highways and back on the railroads. Let the private sector improve the railroads. The legislature should be advised that these units moving one hundred rail cars is equal to six hundred trucks.

When the toll road was begun in the 1950s, the law provided they pay no taxes or assessments. The toll road used about 40 acres of land per mile. This lost taxation was absorbed by property owners of the township. The toll road dumped their water on neighbors’ land and in ditches, but paid no ditch assessment. The toll road is now leased to the private sector and they enjoy the same benefits.

The Porter County Surveyor and Drainage Board are trying the same scheme. Builders, developers and speculators up stream from the Swanson-Lamport Ditch are attempting to have people in the assessed portion pay for their drainage.

J.F. Schrader

Liberty Twp.



Posted 3/11/2008