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Lilburn Mayor Responds to TSPLOST Failure

Lilburn-Mountain Park Patch reached out to Mayor Johnny Crist about his thoughts following the poll results for the 2012 Transportation Investment Act.

Lilburn Mayor Responds to TSPLOST Failure

In Gwinnett County, 70 percent of voters said no to the TSPLOST referendum. And, for the Atlanta Regional District some 63 percent of voters said no and 37 percent said yes.

The anti-TSPLOST contingent is celebrating, and those who hoped the referendum would pass are scratching their heads. The question now is: What's next?

Patch reached out to Lilburn's Mayor Johnny Crist to get his thoughts post election. We are printing his response in its entirety.

Mayor's Response:

"Early in the year when the T-SPLOST referendum was beginning to find an audience I was among those who supported it. I even agreed to allow my name to be listed among those supportive elected officials. But as I learned more about this initiative I changed my mind and voted against it.

"Like most Atlantans I would prefer less traffic congestion. But the proposal lacked the evidence that I needed to convince me that the project would decrease my drive time across our city.

"But at the core of my disagreement with the project is my fundamental loss of trust. Let me explain. 

"Both the "HOT lanes" and the "Ga. 400 Toll booths" caused me to loose trust in our system.

"I was here in the 1980s during the construction of Spaghetti Junction and the installation of the HOV lanes. The state transportation service and the media went to great measures to convince us that we needed HOV lanes to reduce the number of vehicles on our highways and protect air quality. In those days we were encouraged to carpool.

"But I was deeply saddened when I attended the public hearings concerning the installation of the HOT lanes. I expressed my disappointment with the obvious 'bait and switch' tactics that were touted and spoke against it on camera. The HOT lanes seemed to be about increasing revenue for the state. What ever happened to "clean air" and "reducing the number of vehicles" on our highway?

"So I have silently protested the HOT lanes by not purchasing a PeachPass and refusing to support the system. Fool me once but don't fool me twice! Thus I said "NO" to the T-SPLOST. And the majority of others in our 10-county region agreed.

"The proposals to solve our transportation issues will not go away. There will be other creative and thoughtful initiatives emerge through our legislature by 2014. I will be eager to review them."

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