A Georgetown SmartBike station is one of “the worst pork-barrel projects of the 111th Congress”
That headline is a little misleading—due to a quarrel between Clear Channel, the administrators of the SmartBike bike-sharing program, and the City, it’s unlikely that Georgetown will get a SmartBike station any time soon.
Nonetheless, two House Republicans, Rep. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) and Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.), are saying that the very idea of providing Georgetown residents with free bicycles was one of the “11 worst pork-barrel projects of the 111th Congress,” according to Fox News.
Kirk and Price don’t have all their facts straight—they allege that the stimulus provided Georgetown with $3 million in funding for bicycle racks, when in fact Georgetown was merely named as one of 40 new SmartBike locations in a $3 million dollar expansion of the program (and the bike racks came with actual bikes)—but something tells me we would have made their worst-of list either way.
Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) railed against bikes for wealthy Georgetown residents back in March, too, at which time the League of American Bicyclists made an argument for considering bike funding as a “stimulus project.”
What else made this list? “$550,000 for a skateboard park in Pawtucket, R.I.,” “$3.8 million for an urban art trail in Rochester, N.Y.,” and “$500,000 for fish food in Missouri, to help defray the costs for state fish farmers.”
Photo from Flickr user M “Annie” Gaddis.