Home > Uncategorized > Give Me Transportation Millage, Not A Road Millage

Give Me Transportation Millage, Not A Road Millage

Yesterday’s optimistic piece was actually intended to be about the failed Grand Traverse County Road Millage. If passed, the millage would have provided $4.5 million annually to the commission. The easy response is that voters said no to roads, but that isn’t the full story. Sure, there are many voters who want something for nothing, but most understand that we have to pay for services. That said, many voters did respond negatively to the ill-timed 2010 pay raises.

However, the rejection could also be seen as more significant than simple financial considerations. If we look nationally, over 77% of transportation ballot measures passed on Tuesday.Many of the  proposals that passed, have a common theme of being balanced and broad “transportation measures”, not just “road proposals.” The break down of California’s Alameda County ballot measure is reflective of how transportation agencies passed transportation measures. As passed, a $10 vehicle fee will raise $11 million a year to be allocated in the following way:

  • 60 percent—city and county roads
  • 25 percent—congestion relief measures such as express buses, transit passes for students and workers, and park and ride lots or rail station improvements
  • 10 percent—transportation technology improvements
  • 5 percent—bicycle and pedestrian improvements

Be Different To Get My Vote

Personally, I voted no because I’d rather see some county roads be returned to gravel than continue to be built to encourage sprawl and single occupant vehicles. Many rejected the proposal because they were saying no to the status quo approach to transportation. For all the participation in the Grand Vision, the GT County road commission has not shown the creativity, innovation and more balanced approach to transportation that was envisioned. As discussed yesterday, both nationally and locally, citizens continue to express that they want transportation options and they are willing to put the squeeze on to get them.

Do you have an opinion on why the road millage failed?

How did you vote?

  1. beverly gilmore
    November 5, 2010 at 8:09 am

    We voted no, for the reasons you discuss. Thanks for posting. The GTRC needs a reality seminar.

  2. John Robert Williams
    November 5, 2010 at 9:29 am

    Gary! I wholeheartedly agree! As long as we have a road commission that pours salt on roads, which causes un-natural freeze-thaw cycles, that creates potholes they won’t fix, for un-skilled drivers, un-equipped to drive in winter with any skill…I shake my head! Think of the dollars saved by NOT buying salt…it’s poison. There is not one positive thing for using salt on roads…..A totally new approach has to be carried out. Michigan is in the place it is from decline….force change….quit salting the dinosaur trails, only to get stomped into oblivion. I’m NOT anti-road or cars….but I am against condoning stupidity.

  3. Anonymouse
    November 11, 2010 at 7:19 pm

    I voted yes. The roads need to be maintained, especially in the winter. It just needs to be done. Now maybe you and some others can walk and bike around all winter, but there are those of us who can’t do it or don’t want to do it because it’s too much trouble and risk. I love to bike as much as possible, when I can, but after trying it one winter and slipping on icy road surface and getting hurt I won’t be doing it again. Plus it’s cold and miserable.

    What are you supposed to do when you have to drive a longer distance, just hope the highways aren’t too icy? I don’t think they use enough salt up here. I used to live downstate where they salted the F@#! out of those roads and it was much safer driving than up here where they use mostly sand.

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