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Thursday, February 23, 2012

The bridge to nowhere is back in 2012 race !!!!!!!!!!

The candidates debate Wednesday night. | Jay Westcott/POLITICO

“Oh no, not this again” — that was the sentiment of those in Ketchikan, Alaska, the town of about 8,000 known for its connection to the “Bridge to Nowhere,” after the infamous earmark project was prominently mentioned in Wednesday’s Republican presidential debate.
“While I was fighting to save the Olympics, you were fighting to save the ‘bridge to nowhere,’” former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney told fellow presidential candidate Rick Santorum.

The renewed interest didn’t seem to please Karl Amylon, the city manager of the Salmon Capital of the World.
The never-built bridge, which was slated to cost hundreds and millions of dollars, has been used as a classic example of government waste and was often cited during the 2008 presidential race. It was intended to be built to replace a ferry which connects Ketchikan to an island that contains the small town’s airport.
“We already went through this the first time, when this project first drew national attention,” Amylon told POLITICO. “I’m a city manager … I got more important things to concern myself with other than what’s happening down in the lower 48 [states]. … I’ve got bigger things to worry about.”
Amylon said the reputation of the project shouldn’t reflect poorly on the town.
“I don’t think it’s a reflection on Ketchican. It’s a reflection on federal spending in general. A lot of people have concerns about the federal deficit,” he said. “I’m not going to be drawn into a national debate as to whether infrastructure access to an airport is a good investment of funds. … There have been far greater transgressions.”
“We get over 900,000 cruise ship passengers through Ketchican each summer, and I don’t think people who come through here, see the spectacular beauty, leave thinking that this is the area where the ‘bridge to nowhere’ was going to be built,” Amylon continued.
“Oh, no way,” said another city staff member who declined to be identified, after being told of the resurgence in interest in the transportation project.
“I have no problem riding the ferry to the airport,” she added quickly


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