It was no big surprise that Mayor-President Kip Holden chose to be absent from a mayoral forum hosted at LSU on Red Stick traffic woes. 

I suppose it would be difficult for Holden to explain why voters have had no relief over the past four years when it comes to sitting in traffic jams.  When the census bureau released statistics that Katrina did not increase the population to the degree Holden claimed, he dropped that argument.  Why?  Because he was incorrect.

The 3 candidates for Mayor had some interesting ideas regarding Red Stick traffic.  I don’t necessarily agree with all of them, but at least they showed up to discuss one of the major issues plaguing the parish.

Ron Johnson, democrat, has a plan to eliminate the I-10 and I-12 split.  This does not make sense to me, but perhaps it would work to build them on top of each other as he indicated. 

Johnson made an excellent point regarding the fact that Kip Holden promised a light train rail system when he ran for office the first go round.  Nothing happened regarding this promise Holden made.  No big surprise.   

Our traffic is worst than it was 4 years ago when Holden was elected Mayor by default.  Holden was elected by default because it was BR Next that pushed for “Anybody but Bobby” (Simpson) as Mayor.  I always wonder if Kyle had been elected if our parish budget and taxes would be lower?  Kyle is known for his tenacious and conservative approach to budgets for city and state government.

Wayne Carter, republican, wants to take the millions Holden has spent on synchronizing traffic lights in downtown Baton Rouge and spend those dollars on major intersections that are known bottlenecks.  Considering that Holden is determined to spend large sums of tax dollars downtown, this idea is of interest to me.

Dan Kyle, republican, wants to widen I-10.  An idea whose time is long overdue.  Kyle also wants to increase the bus transit system, noting that since Holden has been in office only cuts to the system and routes have been made.  This comment is right on. 

Holden has chosen to cut the very system that allows those without their own transportation to be mobile in our parish.  By cutting routes, it has affected businesses.  Employers often have to shuffle schedules to accommodate employees who need to rush to meet the last bus of the day.

Kyle also noted that Kip Holden fought against widening I-10 awhile back.  Good point.  Thus, Kyle calls the problem the “Kip Holden Traffic Jam”.

It seems that this is the most appropriate way to explain the frustration of citizens of East Baton Rouge Parish regarding traffic woes:


Until next time,

Red Stick Republican