Update 2015-07-03: LCDC Transportation Resolution, plus links to previous meetings.
- John Gayle, (Mayor, Valdosta)
- Demarcus Marshall (Lowndes County Commissioner District 4)
- Jim Galloway, (Executive Director, Valdosta-Lowndes County Airport Authority)
- Corey Hull, (Transportation Planner, Valdosta-Lowndes MPO)
Valdosta City Council Tim Carroll and Lowndes County Commissioner Joyce Evans were also in the room.
Please also like the Facebook Page for “Public Transportation in Valdosta, Lowndes Georgia”: https://www.facebook.com/PublicTransportationForValdosta. As WCTV said in its coverage of this meeting: “Public transportation, or the lack-there-of, has been a hot-button issue in Valdosta for many years.” This is hardly the first time LCDP has discussed transportation. In addition to the previous two monthly meetings (“Supporting Local Business” and “City Matters”), see for example Corey Hull’s presentation of August 2014.
At the end of the May meeting Jim Parker announced he was running for Valdosta City Council At Large with transportation as one of his main issues.
Come hear all candidates for municipal elections at the LCDP BBQ 6PM July 7th at Mathis Auditorium. Local elected officials affect us all most directly, as Dr. Dennis Marks, LCDP Vice Chair for Elections, reminded us, And DuBose Porter, Chairman of the Democratic Party of Georgia will be there, plus fine BBQ (both meat and vegetarian) and the traditional political quiz by Dr. LaPlant, and plus live music by a local band. You can reserve now! If you can’t come to the BBQ, you can still support meetings like this and electing Democrats by joining LCDP today.
LCDP Monthly Meeting – Transportation (part 1): business meeting
Video. Dr. Dennis Marks also said a few words about the late Jay Shaw, former Mayor of Lakeland, State Representative, and member and chair of the State Transportation Board: “Jay’s passion was transportation.” LCDP Chair Tom Hochschild said a few words about the late VSU student Vicky Sanders, who was very active in voter registration and other party activities.
Thanks again to the Lowndes County Board of Elections for the meeting space.
LCDP Monthly Meeting – Transportation (part 2): Transportation panel
Video.Valdosta Mayor John Gayle noted that GDOT won’t even consider any transporation requests without a study first. Later, VLMPO voted for such a study and Valdosta voted funds for it, but Lowndes County did not (although supposedly the county may still fund their part through contingency funds).
Lowndes County Vice Chair Demarcus Marshall is having a learning experience about road paving: some people don’t want their road paved, and the “safety” excuse isn’t as clear as it might seem.
LCDP Monthly Meeting – Transportation (part 3) Every road and bridge is subsidized –John S. Quarterman
Video. After all, every road and bridge is subsidized, transportation drives development, and sprawl is a sure path to fiscal ruin or having to raise taxes, as John S. Quarterman noted later. My suggestion of usage fees for developers was loudly ignored by the panel.
However, Corey Hull of VLMPO immediately noted the previous month a study by the Transportation Research Board shows that a metropolitan area with public transportation is likely to have lower unemployment, higher wages, higher education attainment, and fewer people on public assistance.
Many more people made excellent points, which you can see in the videos.
For example, here’s Mayor Gayle describing the new law HB 170 that will raise gas tax 6 cents and send it to the state, with as yet no explanation of how it will be handed out.
“Transportation brings jobs!“ —Dr. Dennis Marks.
Jim Galloway said he thought the new tax would bring more financial stability, especially for the airport.
- Gretchen Quarterman said that
TSPLOST failed because everybody knew the state would come and build and widen various roads,
but a local road from a local tax, plus an airport tower, the people probably would vote for.
Demarcus Marshall noted the county’s on-call MIDS bus system only qualifies for rural areas and would have difficulties if there was a for-pay metropolitan bus system.
LCDP Monthly Meeting – Transportation (part 4) Jim Parker announces for Valdosta City Council At Large
Video. He’s running At Large, and transportation is one of his main issues.
Here’s a video playlist:
Transportation took off at LCDP May Meeting 2015-05-04
Tom Hochschild, Chair,
Video by Gretchen Quarterman, Secretary, Lowndes County Democratic Party (LCDP),
Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia.