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27 December 2009

Clayton County Legislator Says No Vote On MARTA Anytime Soon

In about three months, patrons of Clayton County Transit --better known as C-TRAN-- will see their bus service end after commissioners voted to end public transportation in the south metro county.

The actions by the Clayton County Board of Commissioners has prompted a mad dash from elected officials at every level to find some sort of a solution to keep the buses running before the March 31st deadline.

However, one option --bringing MARTA to Clayton County-- has been swept off the table by a local state Representative.

State Rep. Mike Glanton (D - Ellenwood), who chairs the Clayton County legislative delegation under the Gold Dome, said there are no plans to introduce a bill letting the voters decide whether MARTA is for them.

Early last week, Clayton County senators and representatives were asked if there are any plans to introduce legislation that will give the county an opportunity to vote on bringing MARTA within its borders.

"I believe we will be in a posture to see what type of General Legislation, as it pertains to Transportation Funding (Regional or Statewide), will be introduced in the Session," Glanton said in a written response. "Hopefully, a plan will be introduced that will include flexibility for local governments or collaboration between governments within a region to implement Transportation Funding Mechanisms favorable to their individual or collective transportation needs."

Although C-TRAN is paid for by the county, it is in essence an extension of MARTA into Clayton County, as the transit agency operates the buses under a contract with the county.