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Shuttle Buses to Nowhere

Listening to the shrill voices on the Left you’d think there is absolutely, positively no “fat” in government spending which can be cut.

But the truth is fat exists at all levels of government and will never be cut unless it’s forced to be cut. The government simply isn’t in the business of looking for non-essential programs or services to eliminate. Government’s job is to grow, grow, grow. Which is why the ONLY way to shrink government is to shrink the money given to it – the ol’ “starve the beast” method.

So the one bright silver lining in today’s economic recession is that government, to varying degrees, is finally being FORCED to do what politicians otherwise would never even remotely consider doing: cutting wasteful and non-essential government. And a story in yesterday’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Las Vegas Sun gives us yet another classic example.

Apparently ever since the Clark County taj mahal government center opened in 1995, two shuttle buses have ferried government workers and the public from the adjacent parking lot right to the building’s front door from 6 am until 6:30 pm every day. “It’s a short ride that takes the place of what would otherwise be a short walk,” noted reporter Joe Schoenann.

How short? From the furtherest end of the parking lot to the door we’re talking about a mere 2/10ths of a mile. At MOST, a five-minute walk.

County Commissioner Steve Sisolak didn’t even know the shuttles existed. “People can’t walk from their cars to the building?” the freshman commissioner asked with incredulity. “I mean, come on.”

Schoenann reports that if the non-essential shuttles were eliminated, taxpayers would save about a half-million dollars. But even cutting this small, indefensible waste of taxpayer dollars has proven unthinkable by government bureaucrats. Indeed, rather than eliminate this waste entirely, County Manager Virginia Valentine decided to cut back on the shuttle’s operating hours rather than eliminate the busses altogether.

Now get this: The new operating hours will be from 6:45 am to 8:15 am and from 4 pm until 5:30 pm. In other words…….

The taxpayer-funded shuttles will operate during the hours when the taxpayer-funded government employees are arriving at or departing from their taxpayer-funded jobs. The taxpayer-funded shuttles will NOT be operating during the hours when the taxpayers themselves who are paying for the taxpayer-funded service arrive and depart from the taxpayer-funded government center.

Have I mentioned that the entire Clark County Commission is presently made up of Democrats and that Democrats have controlled the commission since the new government center opened in ‘95?