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GWINNETT BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS APPROVES NOTICE OF INTENT TO CALL FOR A REFERENDUM
(Lawrenceville, Ga., Jan. 16, 2024) – On Tuesday, the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners took a significant step toward improving mobility by unanimously approving a notice of intent to call for a referendum. As outlined in Georgia law, this action is required before the Board can officially call for a transit referendum to be placed on the 2024 November ballot.
“This is a necessary step in our transit planning process that sets the stage for us to place the power in the hands of our residents to determine the future of transit in Gwinnett,” said Chairwoman Nicole Love Hendrickson. “Over 18-months, we received input directly from our residents, business leaders and municipalities and the result is a Transit Plan that enhances access to job opportunities and education, improves health and well-being and fosters economic development through enhanced mobility options.”
An integral aspect of the plan proposes a shift in the County’s current mobility funding model to a one percent dedicated sales tax. A Transit SPLOST aims to distribute financial responsibility more equitably among all residents, businesses and visitors, alleviating the burden on Gwinnett’s property owners.
“The collective voice of our community may soon take center stage,” said Vice-Chair and District 1 Commissioner Kirkland Carden. “This pivotal moment will give each resident the power to shape the future of mobility and the broader trajectory of Gwinnett County as a whole. It's a unique opportunity for everyone to leave a lasting mark on our shared tomorrow.”
“I’m thrilled that we continue to have unanimous support for this plan,” said District 2 Commissioner Ben Ku. “I’ve been working towards this for years and I’m so happy we finally have a plan where I can say you will be able to get anywhere in Gwinnett without a car. Our Transportation Department has done an excellent job listening to community feedback to come up with a revolutionary and comprehensive Transit Plan to create a system that will benefit every single person in Gwinnett.”
“This opportunity we have to move our county ahead in terms of mobility must not be taken lightly,” said District 3 Commissioner Jasper Watkins III. “We know more people will come to Gwinnett to live, work, and play — and this demands us to be intentional about a transit system that can move people around the county with ease.”
“I appreciate the pared down list of transit projects that includes the shuttle to the airport and the microtransit concept,” said District 4 Commissioner Matthew Holtkamp. “I look forward to robust conversations around a potential referendum with these projects and plan to hold several town hall style events to gain citizen feedback.”
In September, the Board approved its Transit Plan which aims to expand the County’s current transit system, Ride Gwinnett. The new Transit Plan provides 100 percent transit coverage across the county, including two connections from Gwinnett County to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and the expansion of its shared-ride service. Additional projects in the plan include county ride, quick ride, rapid ride and new transit transfer facilities that allow for greater connectivity and mobility across the county.
In the next steps, the County will submit the referendum project list, taken from the Atlanta Regional Transit Plan to the Atlanta-region Transit Link Authority for approval during the ATL Board Meeting on Feb. 1.