Let the Citizens VOTE to FUND or NOT TO FUND
Orem-Provo BRT (Bus Rapid Transit System)
On Tuesday, April 21, 2015, our 2 of the 3 Utah County Commissions voted to start a new BOND and go into debt for a new secondary bus system that will cost taxpayers $150 million to build and millions more each year to maintain and service only a small route in Orem-Provo.
We want the citizens to be able to vote FOR or AGAINST this giant tax beast on the November 2015 ballot. Commissioner Bill Lee asked the other two if they would allow this to go on the November 2015 ballot and was told NO at the Tuesday meeting. So, now it’s up to the citizens to force it on the ballot.
We have 40 days to get 20,000 signatures and push a CITIZEN REFERENDUM, which gives this BRT decision back to the citizens. This is such a huge amount of money it needs to be a citizen vote.
Commissioner Larry Ellertson and Commissioner Greg Graves are FOR the BRT and said they do not want the citizens to vote. Commissioner Bill Lee is AGAINST the BRT and wants the citizens to decide.
The Utah County Repurican Party delegates already voted this year AGAINST THE BRT but that didn’t stop these two commissioners. They are intent to push it through.
The new bus system is called BRT (Bus Rapid Transit). Utah County majority use cars, not buses to get around and we have no need or want for collective public transit.
Here are some facts you need to know
• $150 million dollars just to build it. $75 million from the Federal Grant (a tax taken from our other pocket) and $65 million from a new Utah County Bond paid for on one of our county sales tax revenues.
• $65 million dollar Utah County bond loan will take 32 years to pay off and cost $105 million with the interest we have to pay.
• 85% subsidized with TAX funds to keep it going. Citizens who ride any public transit (bus, train, light rail) are only required to pay 15% of the ticket price; citizens are TAXED to pay the remaining.
• Services only a small route in Orem and Provo, but all county citizens must be taxed. The route will be from the train to UVU, MALL and BYU.
• Roads will be CUT UP and a separate BUS ONLY LANE will be added to the roads, no cars allowed to travel in the bus lane.
• EMINENT DOMANIN will be used.
• Current lanes will be NARROWED to make room.
• UTA will take control of the BRT System. UTA is currently in debt $1.9 BILLION DOLLARS and couldn’t bond for this and that is why Utah County has to bond. (Read the UTA audits done by order of our legislature by an independent firm every two years)
• Commissioner Larry Ellertson told citizens on Tuesday, April 21, 2015 that only 2,500 citizens ride the bus. There are over 500,000 citizens living in Utah County. The bus route we currently have is never full and yet we are making a new secondary one, going into debt to provide for 2,500 citizens? UTA has no way to provide accurate way to truthfully account for how many riders use our public transit systems.
Citizens, come learn about this referendum tonight, Friday, April 24th at 7 pm at the Boy Scout Building at 748 N. 1340 W. Orem.
You can sign the petition and pick up a packet and get 50 signatures from other Utah County Residents. We have only 40 days. All signatures matter and will force this to a vote of the citizens in November. If you can’t make the information meeting, find someone who has a petition and sign it.
Lisa Liddiard and Jennifer Baptista
PGVoices for responsible government following Constitutional principles. True Conservatives who stand for private property rights, limited government and a free market economy. This blog will be a combined effort to give you easy to understand researched local government information.