“Traffic is the problem and TSPLOST is an answer,” says Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul in a newly released video promoting the transportation special local option sales tax that will appear on Fulton County’s Nov. 8 ballot.

The video shows the mayor outside MARTA stations, walking down sidewalks and standing in the city’s traffic camera center–between clips of local traffic jams–as he touts the 0.75 sales tax boost as helping to solve vehicle congestion.

Mayor Rusty Paul describes better connections to MARTA as among the Sandy Springs TSPLOST projects in the new video.
Mayor Rusty Paul describes better connections to MARTA as among the Sandy Springs TSPLOST projects in the new video.

If approved, the five-year sales tax boost would be county-wide, but the revenue would be split among cities for use on specific projects. Sandy Springs is estimated to receive $101 million to $119 million. The city has a list of nine TSPLOST projects, including traffic signal improvements, sidewalk construction, a connection to Buckhead’s PATH400 multi-use trail, and “last-mile connectivity” to MARTA stations by paths or possibly alternative transit.

While Paul mentions some of those projects in the video, he does not directly describe two locally controversial ones: planning for a possible widening of Hammond Drive and turning the Mount Vernon Highway/Johnson Ferry Road intersection into dual roundabouts.

All of the projects were vetted in public input meetings where residents could vote for favorite projects with stickers or online comments.

The video directs viewers to the city’s TSPLOST web page here.

Leadership Sandy Springs will hold a lunch discussion about TSPLOST and its projects on Oct. 20 at the Wyndham Atlanta Galleria hotel, with RSVPs required by Oct. 13. The discussion panel will include Sandy Springs City Manager John McDonough; Fulton County Chief Operating Officer Todd Long; and Benita Dodd, vice president of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation.  For more information and registration, go here.

John Ruch is an Atlanta-based journalist. Previously, he was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.

9 replies on “Sandy Springs releases video promoting TSPLOST ballot question”

  1. Leadership is Republican, anti tax, anti government, so let’s think about this…… Tax avoidance and accountability.

    Remove the Perimeter Transit Last Mile Connectivity from the list as it’s a CID, which is collecting there own taxes, which should be used for exactly these purposes.

    Remove the Sidewalk Program as that should be getting funded by the increased tax revenue of developments everywhere plus the impact fee they should be paying.

    Remove the Mount Vernon Multi Use path as there are roads and sidewalks to get people to the Marta Station.

    Remove Hammond Drive efficiency improvements because no way should a design plan (itemize this one) and some acquisition cost $16,000,000.

    Remove Tier Two as those funds should come from the Property Tax paid by those specific community’s. No one is going to be driving up to that path to use it from say, anywhere really. Local improvement for locals is paid for by their local tax paid. Accountability.

    I ask this Reporter Blog to disclose the amount of Tax Break given to the new corporate relocations to SS. Mercedes is a good example but tally them all up.

    For me this is an easy no vote. Taxes are taxes and our leaders should be looking hard at giving corporate tax breaks then asking the community to pay. They should also be looking hard at working with what they have. One way to stop growth is to work within your budget ie. taxes collected.

    1. Excellent response and may I add that Paul should actually say “traffic is the problem and this administration has exacerbated it”…..

  2. There will be no traffic solution until the power lines on Roswell Rd are put underground and a parallel access road is built on each side to service the businesses. Traffic engineers know this road is the cause of commuter backup and that is where the state needs to step up. What are your suggestions?

  3. Maybe the $100,000 wasted on that logo would have helped. I am voting NO because I can’t vote to tear up more of Sandy Springs with community killing projects.

  4. How much of the tax base was lost by knocking out all the businesses downtown to build the fiasco City Hall? Gouging citizens while giving tax breaks to Mercedes Benz? Something is rotten in Sandy Springs.

  5. Here are some facts that will help you make an “Informed Vote.”
    > It’s curious the Mayor brings up I-285 when the City does not control it. I-285 is an ironic choice because it’s about to undergo a huge transformation at GA-400 which affects most of its layout through the City. It is wrong and misleading to call it ‘the same road’ because it originally was 2 lanes in each direction, is now substantially wider, and about to grow larger.
    > MARTA buses are ‘last mile’ connectivity points, and existing bus lines seem ignored in this video while only rail is mentioned. Why is that? Is this a signal that light rail or dedicated buses are on the agenda for, say, Hammond Dr., which already has a MARTA bus line (two if you count #87 & #5) and was along the route of a failed bus line from Cobb County? Will enough of the population change their mindset to switch from single occupancy cars and really make a difference? I use buses but know many people who don’t ever consider them and a loathe to exit their cars.

    This is just my opinion:
    At this point I don’t trust the City not to make Hammond Dr. its full priority and grossly overspend to create a huge transportation thoroughfare with large and rippling impacts through the surrounding neighborhood. I fear a lot of money will be spent that will still mean Hammond Dr backup at Roswell Rd. I live in that neighborhood. Nor do I think we will have full and timely access to relevant plans and information. I suspect this is mainly a way to build more pavement to fill up again and support more development, and frankly if the City had spent just 1/2 what they will on City Springs maybe it would’ve had enough leftover to change Mt. Vernon/Roswell Rd. So I’m voting ‘No.’ That’s too bad because otherwise I support the rest of what is on the Tier One and Two lists on the T-SPLOST website, and in fact I live it daily by commuting by bike and foot.

Comments are closed.