The Massachusetts legislature is finally out of session, reducing the harm they can inflict upon the subjects of the Bay State. But before they left, they took the time to go back and override several of Governor Romney’s budget vetoes, forking over more of the Commonwealth’s money than he thought prudent.
One example that stuck out to me was restoring $31 million for the Rose Kennedy Memorial Greenway, the planting of trees, shrubs, bushes, and other plant life along the former path of the Central Artery. This was a key element of the Big Dig project — replace the ugly elevated highways with tunnels and sunken roadways, then plant lush greenery in the place of the roads.
Well, the Big Dig is proving out to be The Big Lemon (as many predicted). Governor Romney has taken control of the project (with the eager cooperation of the Legislature, who had used it as their private cash cow for years, but couldn’t distance themselves from it fast enough when it finally killed a motorist), and the estimates for repairing it are running anywhere from “2.5 billion metric assloads” to “more money than you can shake a stick at, plus the stick” to “what’s the plural form of ‘infinity?'”
When looking at the budget, Romney saw that $31 million was set aside for the Greenway. He figured (and I agreed) that such frippery should take a back seat to safety and usability, so he moved it into the repairs budget. Also significant to me, but not mentioned in any account I have found, is that Rose Kennedy was a resident of Florida, not Massachusetts, at the time of her demise (a fact that prompted my very first edit to Wikipedia this morning).
I hope at least some of that green space is dedicated to growing flowers for the funeral arrangements for the next person killed by the Big Dig.