Sunday, May 11, 2014

Pat Lucey, R.I.P

Death of a giant. End of a era.


Jim Bouman said...

One of the best. Pragmatism and principle, carefully balanced. We've not seen his equal in all the years since his service as governor.
The current incumbent couldn't carry the shoes of Pat Lucey.
Anderson / Lucey at the helm could have saved us from the slide into abject Republican mendacity and pandering.


Laurette said...

Indeed! A man who understood that being governor or Wisconsin meant that doing good to all of its citizens was the point.

Anonymous said...

1. He changed the DOT emphasis from new highway construction to maintenance and repair of existing roads and support for urban mass transit (mainly bus);
2. His PSC appointments blocked nuclear power plant construction in a time when Wisconsin utilities wanted to aggressively build more, but would have set up large, unproductive capital costs when Three Mile Island would have brought them to a halt before completion;
3. He was a major mover in the change from departments headed by citizen boards to a secretarial form of administration;
4. He made deals with business--such as the constitutional amendment to exempt machinery and equipment from property tax--but got significant business investment and other policies in exchange--there was a short period in the mid-70's where Wisconsin was the "Star of the North" for its economic performance;
5. He followed Nelson, Reynolds and Knowles, but his administration continued advancing the DNR from game management and parks to the more integrated (competing/conflicting) management and environmental regulation and enforcement duties;
and 6. yes, the University merger.
Marty Schreiber, his Lt. Gov who stepped into the Gov office never figured out what to do with a huge surplus (what a burden....), but there were also hard feelings with public employees and a strike by them at the time he left for Mexico. A few years after this, Lee Dreyfus was proud that in four years, his great accomplishment was two appointments to the UW Board of Regents.