On Election Day November 4th, Forsyth County voters will vote on a proposed Transportation Bond. The Bond would be an up to $200 million general obligation bond to finance a variety of transportation projects throughout the county. General obligation bonds give municipalities a tool to raise funds for projects that are not revenue producing (i.e. roads, bridges, parks and equipment). These bonds are typically used to serve the entire community; where revenue bonds are used to fund projects that will serve specific populations. The tax levy is based on the House Appraisal Value but could be considerably less if SPLOST VIII is approved which will finance $100 million after five years.
Simply put, the current transportation infrastructure cannot handle the substantial growth and expansion that Forsyth has experienced over the past several years. The bond comes out of a need for key infrastructure improvements in Forsyth County that should be managed before the situation worsens.
The Council asked Pete Ames, Chairman of the Forsyth County Board of commissioners to comment on the upcoming vote and explain why the transportation bond is necessary. Ames said that, “it’s time we get proactive.” The counties are going to grow, and it is only a matter of time before something will have to be done.”
Many of the roadways in the southern portion of the county need to be widened and repaired due to an increase in traffic flow that has congested the area. These additions as well as the proposed construction of several new roads will allow traffic to flow in a more cohesive manner and allow residents spend less time on the road caught it traffic. These projects combined with traffic safety initiatives that will focus on potential intersection improvements will accommodate the growing population and traffic flow. Forsyth County plans to partner with the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) for the interstate redevelopment improvements which represent 41 percent of the entire project.
Several of the proposed transportation improvements on the schedule for the bond are already included in category A and B SPLOST project funding, however SPLOST dollars are often slow to trickle in over a long period of time and cannot address key problems quickly. The goal of the Transportation bond is to address the new roads project, the newly proposed intersection improvements and the traffic safety improvements independently, while teaming with SPLOST to appropriate funds to road widening’s that need attention immediately. This combined with the proposed GDOT partnership projects is a huge collaboration between state and local governments to take a step in the right direction and address the transportation issue head on.. The GDOT partnership does include State and Federal Funds support.
The Council supports the Transportation Bond, and encourages all residents to research the Bond and identify where the funds will be allocated. Please Click Here to view the 2014 Transportation Bond Information Sheet.