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Pike rescue plan raises questions at Statehouse hearing

Jul 17 2008

By Eric Moskowitz, The Boston Globe

Michael Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, a business-backed budget watchdog group, said a gas tax increase and tolls on Interstate 93 heading into Boston are needed and inevitable because of the Turnpike's financial problems, even if lawmakers don't acknowledge it yet.
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State may bail Pike out; what about T?

Jul 17 2008

By Greg St. Martin, Metro

According to the Patrick administration, the T's financial situation is also on its radar. But yesterday, Michael Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Association, said he would be concerned if the state helped ease the T's debt. He instead suggested the state should increase the gas tax and the agencies should hike fares to boost revenue.

 

"One of greatest risks here of the Commonwealth doing this is that the T is next," said Widmer, who is against the proposed Turnpike deal. "Not that the T doesn't need help, but putting the Commonwealth at risk is not the way to do it."

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Treasurer accused of inaction on Pike

Jul 17 2008

By Casey Ross, The Boston Globe

Michael Widmer, president of the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, said the administration's proposal does not solve the Turnpike Authority's underlying financial problems and could lead to huge losses for the state.

"There are all sorts of things happening that no one ever expected in the larger credit and financial markets," he said. "I don't know how we can guarantee the state is not going to be on the hook for this."

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Big Dig's red ink engulfs state

Jul 17 2008

By Sean Murphy, The Boston Globe

But more is needed, said Michael Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation. It simply avoids the nasty reality by borrowing deeper and longer into future, he said.

"They are not addressing the situation, they are just shifting billions of dollars of debt to future generations," Widmer said.

"Nobody wants to be the one to increase taxes," he said. "But without taxes, it means the next generation will face a deep hole."

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Legislature paying for more than pier improvements

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Jun 15 2008

Legislature paying for more than pier improvements

By David Kibbe, SouthCoastToday.com

"'We're seeing a plethora of authorizations last year and this year,' said Michael Widmer, president of the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, which studies state finances closely.

"'There's enormous competition,' Widmer said, adding that a legislative authorization was 'no guarantee' that projects would be funded anytime soon."

 
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