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Candidates at Transportation Forum

Transportation for Massachusetts, a coalition which LWVMA belongs to, and Massachusetts Smart Growth Alliance sponsored “Moving Massachusetts Forward – A Gubernatorial Forum on Transportation and Smart Growth” at the Boston Public Library June 4.

Candidates Joe Avellone (D), Don Berwick (D), Evan Falchuk (I), Steven Grossman (D) and Jeff McCormack (I) attended the forum, which aimed to give gubernatorial candidates a chance to voice their opinions about ways to address transportation challenges and to meet the needs of the city’s residents.

The forum, presented in coordination with the Livable Streets Alliance and Kendall Square Association, was moderated by Paul McMorrow, associate editor at Commonwealth magazine, and Doug Foy, CEO of Serrafix.

Questions were delivered in rapid-fire format starting with whether the candidates supported the ballot question to repeal the law establishing gas tax indexing.  All but one candidate, Joe Avellone, opposed the question that would repeal gas tax indexing.

Other questions covered candidates’ favorite green spaces, their opinion on taxing alternate taxi services such as Lift and Uber, and whether they support MassDOTGreenDOT. Other topics of concern were repairing Eisenhower-era bridges, a rail extension from the Berkshires to New York City and what innovation they would use to upgrade state transportation.

A top priority for transportation remains raising and maintaining capital. When asked how best to do this, candidates’ suggestions included aligning with the private sector for funding and gathering input at the local level on insiders’ knowledge to create swift change.

LWVMA opposes the ballot question to repeal the gas tax Indexing, since a repeal could greatly affect future transportation funding.

                –Robin N. Roberge, LWVMA Transportation Specialist