After Tuesday’s signing of SPLOST agreements by city and county leaders, the county is seeking public input on transportation projects that could be funded by the sales tax renewal. The agreement local leaders signed on Tuesday calls for 70 percent of the three-year sales tax program to go toward transportation if the referendum passes.
The county is looking for residents who would like to serve on the Citizens Project Selection Committee. An organizational meeting is scheduled from 6:30 to 9 p.m. on Aug. 26 in the auditorium of the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center, located at 75 Langley Drive in Lawrenceville.
“The purpose of the meeting is to select members and alternates to represent six major interest groups on the committee,” Gwinnett Transportation Director Kim Conroy said.
According to the county, four members will represent homeowners (one from each commission district) and one representative each will represent the business community, environmental stakeholders, schools, civic organizations, and Gwinnett County’s senior population.
Georgia Power Co. facilitator Del Clark will moderate the meeting. Participants will split into groups and select representatives among themselves, according to Conroy.
“The committee’s immediate role will be to review and prioritize prospective project categories and to share information with the interest groups,” Conroy said. “In addition, members will help maintain an open line of communication between county government and the public and help maximize the benefits of the sales tax proceeds.”
Letters are being sent this week inviting residents to attend the meeting and asking them to help spread the word. The letters are just one part of the plan to receive input, according to Charlotte Nash, Chairman of the Board of Commissioners.
“We need representation from all segments of the county, so we’re sending letters, talking to the media and sharing information through all the county’s communications channels, including the website,” Nash said.
On Tuesday, the BOC is expected to issue a call for a special purpose local option sales tax referendum to be placed on the Nov. 5 ballot. This new program focuses primarily on transportation, but also includes funding for other purposes such as public safety, parks, libraries and senior facilities.
If passed, it would take effect when the current SPLOST program expires next year on March 31. The new program would end in March 2017 and would raise an estimated $498 million in total, according to the county.
Gwinnett County will receive 78.9 percent of the proceeds and the cities in Gwinnett will receive 21.1 percent. The county has determined that 70 percent of its share, or an estimated $275 million, will be dedicated to transportation projects such as roads, bridges, intersection improvements and sidewalks.
For more information about the upcoming meeting, visit www.gwinnettcounty.com or call the Gwinnett Department of Transportation at 770-822-7400.