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15 December 2009

Clayton County Legislators Continue To Miss The Bus On Mass Transit

The clock is ticking on the Clayton County public bus system, better known as C-TRAN.

There are about one hundred days until C-TRAN shuts down at the end of March, leaving many without a way to work or school. Yet, the Clayton County legislative delegation continues to ignore the obvious solution to their mass transit woes.

Tuesday's Clayton News-Daily highlights the apparent lack of vision from the south metro county's state representatives and senators.

The Clayton County legislative delegation is seeking direction from the Clayton County Board of Commissioners (BOC) on the future of C-TRAN, and other topics, as it heads into the next legislative session.

“We still are in a posture to look at funding from the state, as well as the federal government,” [state Representative Mike]Glanton said Monday. “We certainly want to be able to dialogue to know as we in the delegation go downtown and begin the conversation, particularly in transportation and so forth and appropriations, that we at least know where we are headed and try to, as much as possible, work in concert with our commissioners.”

Hall, Joel (2009-12-15). Lawmakers seek guidance on C-TRAN. Clayton News Daily. Retrieved on 2009-12-15.

While state or federal funding for mass transit is not a negative for Clayton County, the question of the day is why Clayton's legislative leaders don't at least drop the idea of bringing MARTA to their county.

Thirty-seven years ago, Clayton County voters rejected MARTA. However, Clayton County was an entirely different place then. In 1972, Clayton County didn't have the population it has now. And in 1972, Clayton County didn't have the traffic it has now.

It seems as if the political landscape has become a bit more favorable to the 1% sales tax needed to fund MARTA operations in Clayton County. So why not let the voters decide on MARTA for their county.

With the clock counting down until March 31, 2010, MARTA in Clayton County should be one of the ideas considered to keep mass transit up and running.