No ‘Chance’ for transit bill involving Fayette

Legislation that would have created a regional transit authority for metro Atlanta is officially dead, according to state Sen. Ronnie Chance of Tyrone.

Chance, who co-sponsored a bill acting as the floor leader for Gov. Nathan Deal, said the legislation was designed to make sure that MARTA and/or the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority didn’t get all the transit funds from the regional T-SPLOST sales tax, which was voted down two weeks ago.

“We were making sure we were being good stewards” of taxpayer money, Chance said, noting that the lead sponsor of the Senate bill didn’t even bring it up for a hearing in his own committee. The Senate proposal would have bypassed Fayette for inclusion on the RTA because the county doesn’t operate or support any transit initiatives.

A competing bill in the House of Representatives, sponsored by Democrats, would have required all metro counties to participate in the regional transit authority regardless of whether they have transit operations or not.

Chance said the legislation is also technically dead because all proposed bills expire at the end of each two-year term of the legislature, and a new term begins next year, with no special term expected to be called prior to January.

Fayette County Commissioner Steve Brown has been warning that the regional transit proposals are part of a bid by other parties in metro Atlanta to seek funding from Fayette County for metro transit. He has frequently cited shortfalls in the MARTA budget in particular and alleged that regional leaders want Fayette County to help pay for transit.

Chance flatly rebuked that concept.

“Commissioner Brown thinks there’s a conspiracy behind every action, and there is not,” Chance said.

ginga1414's picture
Joined: 09/01/2008
Starr's Mill Dad

A commission meeting is conducted to do the citizens' business.

Commission meetings are not supposed to be campaign forums or a public place to air personal grievances.

Commission Chairman Herb Frady allowed the commission meeting to be used as a campaign forum for Lee Hearn. When Commissioner Brown tried to respond, Chairman Frady cut him off.

Personally speaking, I don't appreciate my tax money being spent in that manner.

If Commissioner Hearn has a beef with Commissioner Brown, he can take care of that personal business outside of a commission meeting. He can go online and post a comment.

hutch866's picture
Joined: 12/28/2005
Tell me Steve

When your followers are parroting your ideas on the site, and repeating your lies verbatim and the majority of them are anonymous, why don't you rail against them? Why does it only matter when they disagree with with your opinion? Like I pointed out to George the Brownie( by the way George, you never did say if Drake lied) for some reason you hold people who don't agree with you to a higher standard. Why would that be Steve? Maybe hypocrisy?

Steve Brown
Steve Brown's picture
Joined: 12/02/2009
Oh, please

County Commissioner Hearn did what at the last meeting?

You anonymous bloggers are getting pretty desperate just because your Team Hearn and Huddleston is taking a nose dive.

If you go look at the legislation, and the County Clerk sent a copy of it to John Munford, you will see the regional transit governance covers all 10 counties in our region - mandatory.

Go look at Sen. Chance's SB448 while you are at it. That's the one where the developers get a bailout on their loans while the rest of us have to pay full fare.

You can also go see that Sen. Chance pulled his name off of he ethics legislation last year too.

Sen. Chance was a big Jack Smith supporter as well and we all know Smith voted in favor of every mass transit plan that included Fayette County.

The only thing that Commissioner Hearn proved at the last BOC meeting was Gene Drake (the paid lobbyist) is helping him with his campaign and pro-TSPLOST Mayor Dan Langford endorses him too. Of course we already knew
Hearn is pushing the West Fayetteville Bypass through and his relatives own substantial land holdings near by.

We know that Commissioner Hearn was present when then-Chairman Jack Smith at the September 2, 2009 meeting said:

"Chairman Smith said he had two items to report. He reported on the Atlanta Regional Housing Forum that he had attended earlier in the day and the connection to transportation funding. He said the Federal Government was in the process of gathering data to write a new transportation bill. He said it was clear that part of the criteria for future Federal funding may be tied to available transit and density of housing."

Smith, then-mayor Ken Steele and others had passed the Concept 3 regional mass transit plan in mid-2008. It was the Fayette Chamber of Commerce who sponsored the "public" meeting for Concept 3. All of the local TSPLOST supporters knew the direction things were heading.

The recent TSPLOST was supposed to be the opening act of funding tied to transit tied to housing density. Fayette County (Smith, Maxwell, Hearn, Frady and Horgan) was posing no objections to that model and they had a clear understanding of the plan.

Lee Hearn knew the way things were heading both professionally and as an elected official. He never uttered a single objection. In fact, he voted down a resolution asking for Fayette County's removal from all regional and state mass transit plans, wonder why?

So please, you go and believe that Sen. Chance's intentions were pure if you feel like it. Drink some more Kool Aide and play jacks in the middle of the intersection of Hwys. 74 and 54 because there is no traffic there and maybe we can have a re-vote on the TSPLOST that was spending 52% of our money on mass transit. Yeah.

yeahwhatever's picture
Joined: 08/09/2008
Beneath your office

"Drink some more Kool Aide and play jacks in the middle of the intersection of Hwys. 74 and 54 because there is no traffic there and maybe we can have a re-vote on the TSPLOST that was spending 52% of our money on mass transit. Yeah."

Your post is neither constructive nor mature. Please show some class and maturity in your future posts instead of engaging in petty arguments with a dose of sarcasm. You discredit your office as well as Fayette County and give constituents little reason to support your quest for the Chairmanship.

If you want to be effective in the political big leagues, it's time to grow up.

Starrs Mill Dad
Starrs Mill Dad's picture
Joined: 10/06/2006
Brown is a proven liar

At the last County Commission meeting Mr. Hearn did a good job taking Mr. Brown to task for several lies he has made in the past few weeks. Now Senator Chance is doing the same thing.

Starting to see why Peachtree City was so glad to get rid of him.

PTC Observer
PTC Observer's picture
Joined: 04/23/2007
Starrs MD - However

Senator Chance and Rep. Ramsey both supported the enactment of the TSPLOST law and voters should not forget that fact in their next re-election bids.

Don Haddix
Don Haddix's picture
Joined: 08/17/2007
Haddix: Chance's rebuked Comment

One has to go no further than the Regional Transportation Committee website and the ARC to see the push for Concept 3 to be made a reality, with funding.

Transit organizations are also pushing the effort.

This issue is not really over. We must remain alert.

Right now I do not believe there is the will or desire in the Legislature to move forward on such proposals.

But that could change, just as support for the TSPLOST slipped away over time.

Remember, the Legislature is what authorized this whole mess we just went through.

Robert W. Morgan
Robert W. Morgan's picture
Joined: 10/26/2005
Ronnie, Ronnie, Ronnie - please be careful

watch your back. Steve Brown is going to be our next County Commision Chairperson, a member of ARC and is known for single-handledly defeating the T-SPLOST. He is also going to stop the West Fayete Bypass somehow, but we can brag about that later.

You start in on Brown's imaginary little straw men, he's not going to like it. Watch out - he may run against you. He does want a higher position.

Steve Brown
Steve Brown's picture
Joined: 12/02/2009
What are you guys smoking?

Mike King and Robert Morgan are incredibly anxious lately. All this "seeking state office" business is giving off the paranoia vibe.

I would be delighted just to three votes on the Board of Commissioners and a balanced budget.

However, please know how noticeable is has been that neither of you have done a darn thing other than complain, constantly complain. Your lack of action has left a special place in all our hearts.

How about going and voting for Randy Ognio and David Barlow and finally putting you feet where your mouths are? We have heard the senseless squawking, how about walking.

Robert W. Morgan
Robert W. Morgan's picture
Joined: 10/26/2005
No Steve, I have done quite a lot. This time I voted

for Huddelston and Hearn because I felt that was the best way to shut you up. If others feel that way, they can do the same next Tuesday. No anxiety here, just common sense. And I have done more than enough in the past - more than you will ever know, more than you will ever do.

Mike King
Mike King's picture
Joined: 11/29/2006
Right You Are RWM

District voting will be a reality in two years, and Steve will have to move to be reelected as commissioner. He certainly aspires for state office, and Mr Chance is the obvious target.

Funny thing, however, is that our current mayor will look to move to county level and actually believes he deserves to be elected.

Robert W. Morgan
Robert W. Morgan's picture
Joined: 10/26/2005
Both Dorks will do the same thing at the same time

and that would be in 2 years, both Brown and Haddix will be ending their first terms and will have to choose between trying for reelection (dubious at best) or going on to seek election at a higher office - just like Logsdon did, although I think his reelection as mayor of PTC was pretty much a sure thing.

Brown trying for the state level against Ramsey (no chance) or Chance or whoever else is up for reelection seems logical for him. I'm afraid if Westmoreland retires (which he will probably do if Obama wins), Brown will think himself qualified for that. Mr. Brown goes to Washington. Jimmy Stewart isn't available, but someone will have to play Brown in that movie. I'm thinking Ron Palillo.

Haddix of course will count his first term as mayor a huge success - especially if even a small portion of the 500 jobs materialize and run for Brown's empty seat on county commission. They will probably endorse each other. They will probably trash their opponents in the blogs and in the newspaper.
That is how they view the political landscape.

They way I look at it, is that they will actually try to pursue those pipe dreams and their first dose of reality will come at fund-raising meetings. That's going to be painful, but ego being what it is, they'll run anyway without financial backing. Fine with me. Go for it boys.

Recent Comments