T-SPLOST reasons shifting a lot lately


One simple reason not to vote for the T-SPLOST is the fact that paid lobbyist are desperately trying to dupe the public, including letters in The Citizen, on the benefits. T-SPLOST is supposed to be the greatest thing since sliced bread, but it takes an $8 million ad campaign and paid lobbyist to get the point across?

Every poll conducted in metro Atlanta shows T-SPLOST going down in defeat, that’s with Republicans and Democrats. This has truly tuned into a bipartisan effort to defeat special interest dishonesty.

AJC columnist Kyle Wingfield did an excellent job (“Taking a look at some T-SPLOST claims,” July 13, 2012) looking at the facts of T-SPLOST. Wingfield points out traffic “congestion adds relatively little to the average commute: up to 10 minutes of the hour a typical commuter spends in the car every day. Sheer distance between home and work accounts for the rest of the time.”

Wingfield concluded, “If congestion were to fall by 24 percent, then, the average commute would shrink by less than 2.5 minutes a day — only about a minute each way.”

That’s right ladies and gentlemen, that is $8 billion to save two minutes per day!

The referendum calls for spending $3.2 billion on mass transit projects that are only partially funded. The irony is we are not using 70 percent of the capacity of MARTA now.

MARTA’s General Manager Beverly Scott said, “We have a $6 billion investment operating at 30 percent of its design capacity,” (April 30, 2012, http://saportareport.com/blog/2012/04/metro-atlanta-needs-to-learn-from-…).

Ridership is declining, debt stacking up in the billions of dollars and expanding mass transit is their answer to our problems. Stop this insanity in the voting booth on July 31, please.

The traffic relief claims have been so thoroughly disproven that the pro-T-SPLOST people swapped the “congestion relief” sales pitch to one of “economic stimulus program.”

The political action committees for the T-SPLOST forgot to file their disclosure form on the due date so that we can see the special interests funding behind it all. Those are the ones who get the T-SPLOST cash.

One of the news stations called me asking for a comment on Governor Deal doing away with Ga. Highway 400 tolls by the end of 2013, thinking it would help the T-SPLOST effort.

I replied that it simply proved our governor lied to us twice. When campaigning, he said he would remove the tolls and did not. He later said certain state obligations prevented him from removing the tolls. Last week he showed us he could, in fact, remove the tolls. That certainly does not restore my trust in government.

How would we pay for the billions of dollars, year over year, for operating and maintenance of an expanded transit system? Todd Long at GDOT, House Speaker David Ralston, Gov. Nathan Deal and Beverly Scott of MARTA have no idea how to pay those bills.

So they want us to run headlong into a system that does not relieve traffic congestion, will do little for the economy and there is no idea how we sustain the billions of dollars of mass transit costs.

Ladies and gentlemen, run as fast as you can to your polling place on July 31 and vote the T-SPLOST into extinction. Tell the special interest lobbyists to get the heck out of our transportation plans and force our government to develop a genuine plan that truly relieves traffic.

I recommend you look at www.TrafficTruth.net and go to the “Untie Atlanta Regional Taxes” page on Facebook.com if you want to get the truth on T-SPLOST.

Steve Brown

Fayette Commissioner, Post 4

Transportation Leader Coalition member

Peachtree City, Ga.