July 31 - August 6, 2016

New Jersey recently called for a stop to any transportation infrastructure work that was deemed "nonessential," because the state's legislature couldn't agree on a funding mechanism. Is a summer roadwork shutdown a viable option for a government that's having trouble lining up money?

Answers Votes
Only in extreme cases—and if lawmakers put construction crews out of work, they should stop collecting paychecks themselves until it's worked out. 52%
Yes. If the government doesn't have the money, it can't spend the money—it's as simple as that. 27%
No. A legislature that can't work together is no reason to neglect infrastructure and put road crews out of work, even temporarily. 21%

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Tagged categories: Funding; Government; Infrastructure; North America

Comment from Raymond Merrill, (8/1/2016, 5:10 PM)

In government, the concept of zero based budgeting is virtually unheard of. Accordingly, governmental agencies are allocated money, usually based on the prior year's allocation plus a fixed percentage increase, with little thought as to what projects are deemed essential and what projects can wait for another time. Having to prioritize is viewed as heresy. The "use it or lose it" mentality is ever present. Hence, money that is allocated will always be spent. Has anyone ever heard of a government project, program, etc. that is not absolutely essential? Unfortunately, in government, too often the taxpayer is viewed as merely an inexhaustible source of funds. From what I've heard about New Jersey, that's certainly the case. P.S. From the choice of answers offered, it seems there is a view that construction projects are regarded more as just another government jobs program and less as something that will aid the traveling public.

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