On Monday, the U.S. Conference of Mayors went to Capitol Hill to ask for a handout, or as they put it: "We are reporting that in 427 cities of all sizes in all regions of the country, a total of 11,391 infrastructure projects are 'ready to go.' These projects represent an infrastructure investment of $73,163,299,303 that would be capable of producing an estimated 847,641 jobs in 2009 and 2010."
A wish list that is 11,391 projects strong! What vital infrastructure projects would cash-strapped taxpayers get for their $73 billion? Here's a sampling:
- Hercules, Calif., wants $2.5 million in hard-earned taxpayer money for a "Waterfront Duck Pond Park," and another $200,000 for a dog park.
- Euless, Texas, wants $15 million for the Midway Park Family Life Center, which, you'll be glad to note, includes both a senior center and aquatic facility.
- Natchez, Miss., "needs" a new $9.5 million sports complex "which would allow our city to host major regional and national sports tournaments."
- Henderson, Nev., is asking for $20 million to help "develop a 60 acre multi-use sports field complex."
- Brigham City, Utah, wants $15 million for a sports park.
- Arlington, Texas, needs $4 million to expand its tennis center.
- Miami, Fla., needs $15 million for a "Moore Park Community Center, Tennis Center and Day Care" facility. The city is also desperate for $3.6 million to build a covered basketball court and a new tennis court at Robert King High Park. Then there's the $94 million Orange Bowl parking garage you are being asked to pay for.
- La Porte, Texas, wants $7.6 million for a "Life Style Center." And Oakland, Calif., needs $1 million for Fruitvale Latino Cultural and Performing Arts Center.