This actually hit a couple of weeks ago, but in case you missed it: Arkansas Project contributor and state Rep. Dan Greenberg was featured in this July 19th John Fund column in the Wall Street Journal focusing on naming public facilities for public officials. In 2007, Greenberg sponsored the “Edifice Complex Prevention Act” to curb the practice, a bill that died in committee.
It was the constant naming of projects like that that stirred Arkansas state Rep. Dan Greenberg to action. Last year, he introduced the “Edifice Complex Prevention Bill” to put limits on the practice in the state. “I discovered a local park had been named after me and other legislators without my knowledge,” he told me. “But that wasn’t enough for one legislator who complained that the sign with her name on it wasn’t in her campaign colors.”
Mr. Greenberg’s fellow legislators treated him like the proverbial skunk at the picnic. His bill was killed in committee on an 11-3 vote, with one legislator pulling him aside and bluntly asking him “Now tell me the truth, wouldn’t you like a building named after you?” Mr. Greenberg says he would if he paid for it, but the practice of “using taxpayer money to build temples to ourselves as public servants is dangerous.” He plans to reintroduce his proposal again next year.