With the forced resignation of Wisconsin Secretary of Transportation Mark Gottlieb, any scant hope for state roads and highways was washed away yesterday. When Gottlieb spoke honestly and frankly about the need to repair and improve the state network of roads and highways, calling for an honest commitment to safety, many of us were surprised. Such candor and honesty coming from a member of Governor Walker's cabinet was not expected. As reported earlier this month in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
There are 12,000 miles of Interstate, state and U.S. highways in Wisconsin and by 2027 42% of them will be in poor condition if the state doesn't find new revenue or other solutions, state Transportation Secretary Mark Gottlieb testified Tuesday.
In the coming years, the state is expected to end up using up to a quarter of every dollar in its road fund for debt payments under Gov. Scott Walker's two-year plan to borrow a half billion dollars for highway and bridge projects, Gottlieb said in more than three hours of painstaking testimony.
Whether it is getting milk to market or serving commuters, the state is in jeopardy. The economy of Wisconsin is headed in reverse.
It was shocking when Gottlieb spoke up. That he is gone shocks no one.