Group to circle I-285 to protest TSPLOST
by Lindsay Field
July 17, 2012 12:44 AM | 6056 views | 22 22 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print
MARIETTA — A Cobb County anti-TSPLOST group plans to drive around Interstate 285 on Saturday to protest the proposed 1 percent sales tax that voters from 10 counties will vote on July 31.

The Lights for Liberty Drive, organized by the Individual Liberty Coalition, will begin at 10 a.m. Participants are asked to access I-285 from any on-ramp with their flashers on, driving the speed limit and circling the 50-plus-mile route twice counter-clockwise, which should take about two hours.

“Most people, for the most part, are tired of going somewhere and standing out in a rally,” said Marietta resident Jeff Martin, who helped organize the drive with the local coalition. “It’s real easy to access your automobile, and it’s not a stunt. It is just to create awareness on the TSPLOST issue in opposition of it.”

Martin said he opposes the TSPLOST because there is very little information available about what the project list entails or what the costs will be.

“If you look at the (pro-TSPLOST) advertisements, they tell you to support it, but they don’t tell you what they’re going to do,” he said. “They say, ‘It’s only 1 penny,’ but do we see anything ever go away? The costs are projected and estimated, but do things ever come under budget?

Cherokee County resident Patti Pratt, who helped Martin organize the drive, isn’t sure how many people plan on participating but hopes that many do.

“I’ve had more interest in the last two weeks when I’ve talked to people,” she said. “I just want them to be courteous to other drivers, give them space … we’re just out there to make a statement, not to be a nuisance.”

Pratt said she opposes the 1 percent sales tax because 52 percent of the money is earmarked for a transit project she doesn’t believe can be paid for in a decade.

“My hope is that I bring awareness to TSPLOST enough that they will go to TrafficTruth.net,” she said, referencing the anti-TSPLOST website that’s advocating the drive. “It’s important that (voters) make an informed decision. I can’t tell them how to vote but that they should vote.”

Marietta resident Pat Negron, who plans to participate in the drive, said the TSPLOST is “self-serving.”

“The project list was made up without any input from the public,” she said. “It’s unconstitutional to put together counties to form a region … it will not relieve traffic congestion.”

For more information on the drive, contact Pratt at (678) 460-6609, Martin at (770) 318-4870 or visit www.traffictruth.net.
Comments
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Thomas J Palmer
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July 19, 2012
Since the anti TSPLOST groups do not have the BIG MONEY like the CID's and MAVEN who saturate television with UNTIE ATLANTA commercials and stuffs your mailbox with slick, colorful brochures, this is their attempt to call attention to flawed legislation that will not reduce traffic congestion, but is designed for economic development, to payback big engineering companies and to bail out MARTA from insolvency. I believe this is a maneuver that will help with their message of dissent.
SW Gal
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July 19, 2012
These citizens are using freedom of speech and freedom of expression in a peaceful way and taking their valuable time on a weekend to represent all the GA citizens against this tax. GA Public Policy Foundation has said the TSPLOST will do little to relieve traffic congestion. ARC, by their own admission, agrees and says it tis all about "development." If this tax is passed, it will not end and will only increase once these politicians and cronies realize that they can make money at our expense.Vote NO please.
Dragomir
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July 18, 2012
Fat lane.
edification riyNor
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July 18, 2012
Tee, hee. A bunch of people wasting gas to no avail. Tee, hee. I hope the news covers this. Tee, hee. What is the MOST, MOST, MOST, MOST tee-hee of this is that they are doing it on a Saturday--not during rush hour. That is the biggest tee-hee of all!
THWG
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July 17, 2012
“The project list was made up without any input from the public,” she said. “It’s unconstitutional to put together counties to form a region … it will not relieve traffic congestion.”

Seriously? I guess she totally missed all of the roundtable public meetings. I went to several and there was tons of public involvement.

Unconstitutional? Please. It is not.

This Lights for Liberty Drive is so stupid. I am part of the tea party and have been to many rallies. They have a point. You gather with other people, talk, express views, hear speeches, etc. A drive around Atlanta in protest of this only wastes gas, ads to the congestion, and presents a safety hazard. This might be as stupid as the occupy movement, well, I guess there wont be drug usage, defecating on cop cars, or rapes going on during this protest, so it's not as bad, but IT IS STUPID.

Pascual Perez
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July 17, 2012
You people are loco!
Gary Burley
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July 17, 2012
So the plan is to protest against traffic congestion by creating traffic congestion on the busiest driving day of the week?
A Taxpayer
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July 17, 2012
This is a stupid idea. It's completely unorganized, it's not very visible, and it's a hazard. But I'm still voting "NO" on the TSPLOST.

Those who would vote "YES" on the TSPLOST have no problems with the government reaching down into the citizens' pockets yet again, for more money because they couldn't budget what we've already given them.

"YES" voters don't care about you! They stand to benefit financially from this money-grab. Case in point: the huge "Untie Atlanta" billboard campaign. Notice how much big money is behind this scheme, from the road contractors to the politicians who will get the kickbacks. They don't care about you and your commute time! They care about their bank accounts! Don't fall for the "untie" hype -- it's still a tax and it will be wasted like all the rest we've given them.

Pericles
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July 17, 2012
This idea takes the stupidity of the anti-TSPLOST crowd and uses it to create actual physical peril for the rest of us. What does driving in circles, creating congestion, and endangering the lives of your fellow citizens do to further your cause?

Approving the T-SPLOST will build 157 much-needed projects to relieve traffic congestion and help bring JOBS to metro Atlanta. What does the other side offer? Moronic publicity stunts.
you people are crazy
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July 17, 2012
You people are crazy. This referendum will produce over 150 needed projects to the region. Did every good project make the list? No, but those were part of the compromises that had to be made to set up a final list.

I've seen people complain that $500 a year may be contributed by a middle class family spending 50k towards this tax. That totals $1.37 per DAY. Seriously? So even if the improvements save you 5 minutes of driving (most people who go through I-285 and SR 400 interchange probably waste 10-15 just in that stretch) that's $0.27 per minute and the tax is over after 10 years! The benefits from these projects will last long after the residents of Metro Atlanta have stopped paying the tax (unless they decide this is actually a really good way to fund transportation projects and the VOTERS VOTE to extend the tax for a new project list).

And for the griping about no one has ever spent their way out of a recession argument I have a question… what got us out of the last Great Depression? I’m pretty sure it wasn’t starving government programs like road building.

Jrog
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July 17, 2012
Thanks for crunching the numbers for us, pal, but um... I vote NO! And I am not crazy.
anonymous
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July 18, 2012
"The tax is over after 10 years". Famous last words. There is nothing in the budget for ANY of these projects to account for their maintenance after they are built in 10 years. Their costs will NEVER end. Remember the toll on 400 that was supposed to end three years ago? How's that working out? Once the government has their hooks in you - it will never let go!
Bryan -- MARTA suppo
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July 18, 2012
Jrog -- you probably don't have a valid reason to vote no.

anonymous -- the Ga 400 tax was completely different. This tax BY LAW has to end. Not the case with the 400 tax. And what projects are ever built (road or transit) with maintenance and operation money FOREVER?!
Anne Marsden
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July 18, 2012
Bryan - you probably have no idea of what ANYBODY thinks let alone why they are voting on a particular topic. We all know the law will end, but you seem to not know or are conveniently ignoring the brutal facts about maintenance costs. The horror in this case is that the additional costs will be for maintenance on items which will have no measurable effect on traffic by most common sense accounts. So we will be paying for the maintenance on useless "stuff" while at the same time sitting longer and longer in our cars figuring out where to come up with even more money to fix the problem that should have been fixed already. Your socialist/vicious circle goes round and round and makes my head hurt. Your holier than thou attitude about those you disagree with certainly emphasizes the point that those in favor of more control over all of our lives think they know what's best for all of us. Get your nose out of the air. You sound like you live at 1600.
eastcobber12
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July 17, 2012
Is it legal to do this? Driving with flashers on when a hazard does not exist. Sounds needed revenue for the Government if the Police write tickets.
NtheNo
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July 17, 2012
Totally against T$$$PLOST and have already voted NO - but don't care for this idea.
doesn't make sense
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July 17, 2012
These people are protesting a tax by driving around a very needed and much used highway that was built with tax money? It seems their drive supports the TSPLOST. Good waste of money. VOTE YES
The Truth
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July 17, 2012
This article just shows how ignorate the Individual Libert Coalition is or that their mission is to spread lies. Two points in this regard; Martin is quoted as saying that there is very little information and the project list or what the costs are. Have you been living under a rock? Go to any DOT web site or ARC web site and you will have more information that you could comprehend. But certainly, instead of trying to find the truth, it is just easier just to lie about it. And then Negron states that the project list was drawn up without any public input. Once again, she must have crawled out from her rock. any town halls and 16 thousand phone calls calling in to a public participation event. Plus all of the projects came from previous lists that also had been veted by the public. But I guess someone didn't come to Martin's and Negron's house and spoon feed them. Have fun wasting your gas in the parade of the ignorant and uninformed.
TIC
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July 17, 2012
@ THE TRUTH

Another totally partisan comment by THE TRUTH.

The "drive around" is a very stupid idea. That is obvious.

However,

Going to the DOT or ARC websites as suggested by THE TRUTH to get factual information on the TSPLOST is beyond STUPID.

It is pro TSPLOST propaganda fomented by the very people who will stand to benefit if this taxpayer funded debacle passes.

Not facts, not truth, no objectivity.

Partisan BS!!

That's all you will be subjected to!!

Just like all the posts by THE TRUTH.

I fully support the
|
July 17, 2012
anti-TSPLOST cause, but this group might be removing its bumper to spite its front end. IMO, this seems like a waste of gas. I was under the impression that one of the advantages to solving our traffic problem was to conserve resources.

Even though I can't stop y'all from polluting our air a little more, I will be voting "no" along side you on July 31st. If there is another referendum, maybe it will present a more concrete, assured set of solutions to our traffic problems - reducing our air quality and natural resource issues.
VA baby
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July 17, 2012
I agree. Not a good protest idea. Wasteful and unproductive. Just vote no when it comes time.

Racist Parade
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July 17, 2012
I am surprised that they will drive into Atlanta, why not ride MARTA while your at it? Maybe you will see that there are some actual white people there that are not scared of minorities.
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