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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Freep article: Embattled transit center wins OK in Troy

Some clips from the Free Press coverage...

Embattled transit center wins OK in Troy

By Bill Laitner
With last month's endorsement by Gov. Rick Snyder of a proposed transit center filed in their briefing packets, members of the Troy City Council voted Tuesday night to approve a scaled-down version of the controversial project they blocked last month.
By a narrow vote of 4-3, the seven-member council gave the go-ahead for the bus-and-rail hub that regional boosters of metro Detroit said was needed, and which Snyder has called "good for Michigan" as well as "important for the people and the economic future of Troy."
Opponents said it would waste federal tax dollars, wasn't needed by Troy residents and could bring crime to the city.
"I'm glad we were able to compromise, and now we can move forward," Mayor Pro Tem Maureen McGinnis said.
"I am focused on how this transit center may benefit future generations, and not on the next election," Fleming said.
The three "no" voters, led by Troy's new mayor Janice Daniels -- a longtime activist in the Troy Tea Party -- stuck with their contention that the project was a waste of tax dollars, although Troy City Hall would not be footing the bill.
"I am not going to accept this money from a government that is $15 trillion in debt," Daniels has said repeatedly, although she made no comments before voting Tuesday. Before the meeting, however, she said that if the project passed, she would "do all in my power as mayor of the City of Troy to make this center the best it can be."
"We've waited 10 years for this," said Bill Cowger, a Troy resident and member of the Chamber of Commerce. "When Amtrak can get people from here to Chicago in 4 1/2 hours, it'll be huge," said Cowger, a professional photographer known for leading African safari tour groups.

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