“This is why people are frustrated with the federal government, right here.”

An alert reader put me onto this:  somebody in Gainesville got carried away with the local high school color scheme.

Gainesville is being threatened with the loss of federal transportation funding because of the color scheme used for the newly-erected street sign honoring Gainesville High School graduate DeShaun Watson.  And, that has Congressman Doug Collins of Gainesville and Mayor Danny Dunagan seeing, well, “red.”

According to a press release late Thursday afternoon from Collins, the federal Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration last week sent the Georgia Department of Transportation an email citing a code that “specifies the color of highway signs” and noted that Gainesville’s new sign is not in compliance with the code. The notice informed GDOT that a “failure to comply with the jeopardizes the future of federal funding” for the city.

The sign appears on DeShaun Watson Way, formerly Touchdown Drive, a side street leading to the high school and features white text on a red background in a nod to the Gainesville High school colors.

Never underestimate a politician's talent for making hay out of a minor bureaucratic matter, and you won't be disappointed.

“The DOT’s decision to respond to a small city’s celebratory act by threatening to withdraw its federal funding is an egregious example of abuse at the hands of federal bureaucrats. As many sections of our nation’s infrastructure are in disrepair, I am amazed that the DOT has prioritized targeting the entranceway of a local school,” Collins said.

"We're calling on them to fix this. My Deputy Chief of Staff has talked to them," Collins added.


Gainesville’s Mayor Danny Dunagan believes the DOT could have approached the issue more delicately.

“A nicer approach would have been to give our city 30 days’ notice to replace the sign before pursuing the nuclear option of federal defunding. Deshaun is a fine, upstanding member of our community and one of the greatest football players of our generation. Our intent was simply to honor him at the entry to our school,” explained Dunagan.

I suppose it was too much trouble to ask ahead of time for a waiver.

If Mark Richt and Mike Bobo hadn't ignored Watson until it was too late, this never would have happened, I tells 'ya.



Filed under Political Wankery

15 responses to ““This is why people are frustrated with the federal government, right here.”

  1. “If Mark Richt and Mike Bobo hadn’t ignored Watson until it was too late, this never would have happened, I tells ‘ya.”

    Because he wouldn’t be getting a sign?

    (I kid, I kid)


  2. Thanks Obama .. er wait


  3. Spike

    “We are from the government and are here to help you..”


  4. Borodawg

    I went to the Styx concert last weekend in Savannah and the song “Too Much Time on My Hands” is playing in my mind for some reason.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Just make the damn sign green with white letters like it’s supposed to be. It’s not rocket surgery. Peyton Manning’s road sign isn’t orange.

    The city, school system or whoever did that made a bad decision and now they’re trying to blame someone else. Figures.


    • Napoleon BonerFart

      Exactly. If people just obeyed stupid rules, bureaucrats wouldn’t look stupid when they had to enforce the stupid rules. Come on people.


  6. Irwin R. Fletcher

    A nicer approach would have been to give our city 30 days’ notice to replace the sign before pursuing the nuclear option of federal defunding.

    Yes…because I’m sure that’s the way his branch of government deals with citizens before they start handing out invoices…errr…I mean, fines.


  7. Size, color, design, style, etc for road signage is mostly the same for good reasons. They certainly got that sign custom made.

    We can claim they have too much time on their hands when I’ll bet anything that someone who works out Of the Gainesville DOT office saw it while dropping off or picking up their kid(s).


    • mwo

      And that DOT worker is probably a Bama fan. I agree with you though, rules are rules, I remember it was the feds who made all the states raise the drinking age to 21 by threatening to withhold funds.


  8. Signage is actually a fairly contentious issue at the local and federal level and has been a big part of lawsuits. This is one of those times I don’t blame the Fed for going nuclear. Ole mayor would change his tune very quickly if sometime has an accident there. 30 days?? No, take that sign back to the Big Johnson t-shirt/screen printing gift shop or put it on your wall where it was meant to go.


    • Napoleon BonerFart

      Accident? Was it one of those signs that jumps out in front of cars, or throws rocks? Because I agree. Those kinds of signs should be illegal.


  9. Cousin Eddie

    So is the Mayor a Tebow or meyer fan with the GFPOG comment?

    Move the sign off the right away and onto school property and leave it alone.


  10. ApalachDawg

    I think a Better option is to remove the street sign all together and put up a statue of Mr Watson with him pointing toward the school and have him holding up a sign that says “this way mofos”


  11. 69Dawg

    The power of the Federal government to tell a city what kind of sign it can have should be limited to Federal Highways. The Federal government has used its power of the purse to do to local governments what the Founding Fathers could not imagine. The States and local governments are now like heroin addicts except they are hooked on Federal Funding. So anytime the Feds want to get their way, even if their way is unconstitutional, they just threaten to take away the money. I would love for a State to tell the Feds just once: Take your money and shove it up your political ass. This applies to both parties.


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