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Countdown to Doomsday ...

By Margaret Lyons in News on Oct 30, 2007 8:20PM


It's T-minus four days until "Doomsday I," and the storm clouds are gathering. Mayor Daley held a press conference at a bus stop yesterday, announcing that "This is do-or-die time."

State legislators aren't in session right now, and won't be until Friday — gaaaah! cutting it close, guys! — but Mike Madigan thinks he can get his bill calling for a tax increase to fund transit through the House and the Senate. Madigan needs 71 votes in the House, and last time he only had 61. You can see how your rep voted here, and start making angry phone calls at your leisure. It's possible some boxes will flip from red to green if a statewide construction-funding bill passed, and it looks like the only way that's going to pass is with "gaming" expansion. And all this time, Mr. Bus Voice has been telling us that gambling on the CTA is "strictly prohibited."

Adding to the urgency this week was a visit from House Highways and Transit Subcommittee, on hand to examine Chicago's viability as an Olympic host. The chairman of that committee, U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore), said "The state and the governor are walking away from a minimal responsibility to maintain an existing [public transit] system, let alone dramatically enhance it .... You're in a full crisis mode, and the whole country is going to be watching this week."

Don't forget, tonight's the first of three CTA budget hearings you can attend.

"Xoom" by Thee Erin.