About three years ago, it became apparent that there existed a fox-watching-the-chicken-house relationship between the Maine Turnpike Authority and HNTB, a Westbrook engineering consulting firm. Since then, I don’t think I’ve heard a more fitting summary of the role of the MTA than what Sen. Douglas Thomas, R-Somerset, was quoted as saying in the Sun Journal Feb. 3: a “good ol’ boy” organization that has turned “100 miles of highway into an industry.”

Fighting for the truth, exposing wastefulness and injustice through the legislative process is a long and tedious job, but if citizens don’t take responsibility for maintaining and safe-guarding their rights under the law, then self-serving, fat-cat quasi-governmental agencies, whose life’s blood comes from the veins of hardworking, tax-paying (and often ill-informed and uninformed) Americans, will continue to manipulate the democratic system, ravage natural and civic resources, and engineer their own truths for the good of those who choose cash for self over service to citizens.

With an eye toward spending cuts, this is a good time to make decisions about how the toll revenue from 100 miles of well-maintained turnpike can be put to use for the good of all Maine citizens, rather than sustain an insatiable relic such as the MTA.

My appreciation goes to state representatives and senators and the leaders and members of the Think Again citizens group in York, who continue to fight long and hard for us all. It is not over yet.

Denise Johnson, Cape Neddick


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