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Doing 'less with less' Is that Gov. Hassan's new motto?


Gov. Maggie Hassan's transportation commissioner threatened last week, again, that he was pretty much going to have to shut down New Hampshire highways in future winters and advise motorists not to cross that bridge - any bridge - when they come to it.

OK, we are exaggerating Christopher Clement's latest "wolf!'' cry. But it is not that far from what he said. And what he did say was bad enough.

We are, Clement testified to a House committee, doing "less with less."

Not exactly the "can-do, all-hands-on-deck'' attitude that Gov. Hassan speaks of wherever she goes. Sounds more like "abandon ship! All is lost!"

There is no doubt that state highway maintenance and improvements need to be paid for. New Hampshire highway crews do a fine job of it, particularly in the winter, where tourists and residents alike take to the roads to take advantage of skiing and other outdoor activities.

It makes no sense whatsoever for the governor to allow her highway chief to tell those travelers that they may as well go elsewhere for their skiing and winter fun because we won't be maintaining our roads.

It makes no sense for someone seeking legislative approval for a higher gasoline tax to be saying he is doing "less with less."

What he ought to be saying, what Gov. Hassan should be demanding of him as with other public officials, is that he is finding ways to be more efficient, to prioritize, to learn to do "more with less'' or head for the snow-covered hills.

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