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Officials hold public forum on regional transportation

NORCROSS -- Officials held a public forum Thursday to discuss the upcoming vote on the regional Transportation Investment Act and the proposal itself, which one panel member called "one of the most important pieces of legislation we've had in the state of Georgia in quite some time."

Essentially, the TIA will give 10 counties in the metro Atlanta region -- including Gwinnett -- the ability to vote in July on whether or not to accept a 1 percent sales tax to fund transportation projects over a 10-year period. If passed, it's estimated to generate close to $7 billion in tax revenue.

Thursday's forum hosted by the Partnership for Southern Equity discussed the bill's potential impact on Gwinnett, which would be scheduled to receive roughly $700 million for transportation projects.

Officials and community members on the event's panel expressed their support for the TIA, while also preaching public involvement and dialogue.

"As a region, we are way, way behind (in transportation)," said Jann Moore, the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce's senior director of public policy and education.

Herman Pennamon, representing the Gwinnett Unity Group, called its passing "imperative" and dubbed it "one of the most important pieces of legislation we've had in the state of Georgia in a long time."

If passed, 15 percent of funds raised in the region will also be returned to each jurisdiction to use on transportation projects they identify. Norcross Mayor Bucky Johnson said those potential local projects would be well-vetted.

"We are working now with all the CIDs and all the cities and the county to develop those projects," he said.

Comments

ACC12_SEC13Booster 2 years, 3 months ago

""As a region, we are way, way behind (in transportation)," said Jann Moore, the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce's senior director of public policy and education."

With legislation like the T-SPLOST being indicative of how the state of Georgia approaches transportation planning, it's easy to see why "we are way, way behind" in transportation.

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NewsReader 2 years, 3 months ago

Hahaha, "...senior director of public policy and education ..."? That is hysterical. From a gov'ment institution no doubt. Jann must be so impressed with herself to hold such a lengthy impressive title! That just cracks me up. If you've ever attended any public forum orchestrated by any gov'ment institution, you know firsthand that it is both comical and a complete waste of time. Their only purpose is to listen, albeit very briefly, to your complaint, and then proceed to tell you why you are wrong. And if you strenuously object, you are ceremoniously escorted out the door by one of our sheriff's deputies. And when they ask "Are there any other objections?", nobody wants to be the next one escorted to the door. This is nothing more than a political grandstand so the great power hungry politicians can go ahead and proceed with their agenda and respond to the public with "well, we had a forum..." TSPLOST to most of us is dead, and if I have anything to say or do about it, it will remain dead in much the same way the outer perimeter is dead.

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LilburnLady 2 years, 3 months ago

Amen! Every public "forum" I have been to is exactly as you described, a dog and pony show to say that the citizen's views were included, but the reality is that the decisions have been made, the contracts signed and the plans already underway when the public forum is conducted. Then whoever takes the minutes of these forums completely glosses over the negative statements of citizens and says "there were concerns, but they were addressed." This is code for "people didn't like it, but we explained to them why they were wrong and we were right."

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Mack711 2 years, 3 months ago

It is now time to tell these individuals with the long meaningless titles exactly what we want. Come July when we vote on the 1% T-SPLOST and tell them that this is not what the citizens want to do with StrongOUR Tax Dollars. These people have lost touch with the average citizen who pays for all this 'stuff' that they want. As long as there are HOT Toll lanes on I 85 we should vote NO on this issue come July.

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ACC12_SEC13Booster 2 years, 3 months ago

These people haven't just lost touch with the average citizen who pays for this stuff, they have lost touch with REALITY, period.

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dentaldawg83 2 years, 3 months ago

Forums are useless..gubment lackeys have their minds made up already.

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SuxBeanU 2 years, 3 months ago

Okay, so we have Partnership for Southern Equity, Gwinnett Unity Group, and Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce all discussing how they want to divide up the proceeds of the TIA in the Atlanta area. Does anyone else think that these groups really don't care about transportation, rather they care more about how big their share of the pie will be? It seems like whenever government proposes a new tax, groups come out of the woodwork seeking to garner a share of that new money to fund their agenda, whether it has anything to do with the intended purpose of the tax or not. Given the size and scope of this TIA/T-SPLOST thing, is there any doubt that it is a prime candidate for fraud and corruption? On top of that you add in a 15% "kickback" to local governments, to use as they see fit, and it's a sure bet that while transportation will probably not improve, there will be a significant improvement in some "good old boys" bottom line. For me, this T-SPLOST is a non-starter!

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Kent 2 years, 3 months ago

I just can not understand why all you people out there are so upset over just a penny sales tax. A penny here and there-it's not much. Heck, splost has always been just for a few years, the GA 400 toll was just for a few years, these taxes are always just for a short while. I see splost signs all over the county informing me how wonderful it is. The great thing about splost is that it never goes away. It is so nice taxpayers have to pay for a sign to tell us our tax dollars are being spent. Even the governor wants these new taxes. Maybe my commissioner Mike and the governor can get together and have a brain storm on ways to tax us even more. The transportation investment act, what a catchy name. Classic left wing BS--calling a tax an investment.

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get_involved 2 years, 3 months ago

I attended the forum last night and talked to some people from a group called Connect Gwinnett. It sounds like they are looking out for the "little people" and plan to help influence the decisions about that 15%. I just took their survey and I suggest all of you do, too. They are going to forward the results to our elected officials so they know without a doubt what we want and don't want. The survey is at www.surveymonkey.com/connectgwinnet>

kevin 2 years, 3 months ago

If the government would stop all this wasteful spending on wasteful studies, we would have much more for our services. We need to elect SMART BOC candidates who know more things about how they work so we can stop paying for studies and more studies. My dog could be a commissioner in Gwinnett just as long as he knew who to bark at to do a study.

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news2me 2 years, 3 months ago

Pile it on BOC, confuse the citzens with a plethora of issues. Take their minds off Briscoe and get them all hot and bothered about something else like TIA. Divide and conquer.

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