T-SPLOST will support jobs, improve roads and bring industry

Heath Garrett feilds questions about the T-SPLOST / Ashley Knight

The T-SPLOST won't be voted on until next July, but advocates for the movement are trying to spread the word here in Albany.

The T-SPLOST is a one cent sales tax collected over ten years and will go to fund local transportation projects like resurfacing, building or widening roads. Political consultant, for the Connect Georgia campaign, Heath Garrett is trying to educate those about the tax. Garrett said the magic words Wednesday when he said it will help bring industry to Albany.

"If we have the roads, if we have the infrastructure, if we have the opportunities to get their products to market quicker, we'll get those jobs here and they won't go to other states," said Garrett.

Local leaders of Albany, Dougherty County, Lee County and others packed a room at the Doublegate Country Club to hear the speakers, Bob Alexander, Lee County's Director of Planning and engineering knows what projects are on the list for Lee County.

"Westover Road extension, the Forrester Parkway and the State Route 32 relocation."

Many folks are not happy about one more one cent sales tax, but Garrett says there's a good reason why they should support it.

"For every billion dollars you spend in transportation, you either create or support about 28,000 jobs."

Of the eight million dollars in stimulus money given to the area, only 15 percent went to local infrastructure. Meanwhile, 100 percent of the T-SPLOST will go to local projects and will have an estimated economic impact of 19 billion over ten years.

"This allows local counties and local cities to control your own destiny. None of this money is going to Atlanta and none of it goes to Washington D.C. it's all spent here," says Garrett.

In addition, the individual counties and cities will get a percentage of the tax to be spent as they see fit. Dougherty County Commission Chair Jeff Sinyard, who is on the committee to select which road projects to send for approval, says any extra money would be spent on those road projects left out of the final list.