We need to raise additional revenue to support the operation, maintenance, and expansion of our public transportation system.
To do this, I favor a progressive plan that asks the very wealthy - along with the big corporations and the large financial institutions - to pay their fair share of taxes.
I do not support a gas tax, a parking space tax, a miles-traveled fee, or any other tax that would fall on the backs of working people.
When it comes to financing our vital public services, I am skeptical of rhetoric that says "all options are on the table." In practice, this often means that middle-class working people are asked to foot the lion's share of the bill.
When I am on the floor of the House, I will insist that we raise revenue by collecting more from those who have actually benefited from the economic tumult of the past decade.
In the end, I would be willing to consider any reasonable proposal (as long as the negotiating process is fair). But too often, entrenched Democrats start by accepting the talking points of fiscal conservatives. I am not going to take that approach.
Finally, we should not forget that the MBTA wound up in this position due to many years of mismanagement and neglect by our state Legislature.
The T's fiscal woes all started when the Legislature voted in favor of a risky, "forward funding" scheme that relied on rosy projections and dumped billions of dollars of debt from the "Big Dig" onto the books of the MBTA.
To this day, just about every dollar that is collected in fares by the MBTA goes to servicing the MBTA's $5 billion debt.
Meanwhile, the future of the Green Line Extension remains in doubt while we wait for Beacon Hill to get its act together.
The question for voters on Nov. 6 is whether the same legislators who got us into this mess should be trusted to get us out of it.