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Stimulate Us: Giant Maps, Billiards and Bic Lighters

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In the spirit of democratic debate, Gov.  Tim Kaine has opened a Web site fielding suggestions from citizens on how to spend the stimulus money doled out by the federal government at www.stimulus.virginia.gov. The deadline for submitting proposals is March 6. The 4,600-plus suggestions include construction projects and pleas for teacher pay increases, but a few comments travel a little wide of the public policy mark:

• “Diamond Billiards [in Midlothian] needs state of the art air filtration equipment to keep the establishment operating with clean air … Diamond Billiards also needs to upgrade their pool tables to “Diamond” Professional tables which would attract a higher spending clientele. Diamond Billiards would also like to create a “First Que” program to teach children the sport of billiards.”

• “Buy a Bic lighter, should be less than $1. Use the lighter on the 700+ pages of the stimulus package.”

• “I am seeking funds to improve the landscaping for my yard. This project has been designed and is literally ‘shovel’ ready. I have selected a landscaping firm that needs the business but I just need the money.”

• “Have the State of Virginia purchase Busch Gardens Williamsburg and Water Country USA from InBev and turn into State Park(s).”

• “I just read the terms and conditions and I refuse to submit my idea without the opportunity for royalties or privacy. If you would like to discuss this opportunity to assist the state further without these rules, feel free to contact me. This idea is patent pending and for the amount of time and money I have invested, signing this over to you would not be in my best interests.”

• “[I] think we should build a giant friggin map of Virginia. Like, a life sized map. I know what you are thinking, where would we store this giant map of virgina since it will be as big as virgina we won't have anywhere to store it. Well, how about Maryland, no one likes Maryland except for my buddy Sung. Maybe we could cut a hole out of the map so he could still live in his apartment and have wii parties.”

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