November 11, 2005
On Tuesday, voters decided to extend the penny sales tax to include another $160 million phase. But when can we expect to see some of the SPLOST projects actually started? News 12 explains why the city says everyone will be able to see progress from SPLOST right away.
It’s been promoted as ‘Pennies for Progress,’ and while SPLOST V passed with an overwhelming majority, some voters who said no to SPLOST on Tuesday, and even some who said yes, are concerned about money from previous phases not being spent. But the city administrator told News that that money is being spent and new projects are underway.
“It’s my job now to get that money spent and get those project built and on the ground and that’s part of what I’m doing over the next several years is making sure I fulfill the promise that I made,” Fred Russell said.
City Administrator Fred Russell says taxpayers can rest assured that money from the new SPLOST will be spent in a timely manner.
“Obviously you got to collect the dollar before you can spend them, but the planning processes are ongoing as we speak,” Russell said.
He says projects building a new jail, new library, and judicial center are now underway. And says projects like renovating the Imperial Theatre, and building new fire stations are set to begin in the coming weeks.
“It’s a very big gigantic puzzle that you have to put together to make sure the planning, dollars spending works out about the right time, so we’ll be doing some meeting, next week talking about that,” Russell said.
“This road has been torn up like this for 15 months,” said John Cannon.
But John Cannon says he’s concerned about incomplete SPLOST projects from previous phases, like construction where he lives along Warren Road. He says he was told construction would be complete more than a year ago.
“If they haven’t used the other money to do this what do you think they are going to use the one money to do what they say they are going to do with that,” Cannon said.
But Russell says that and other projects are now underway.
“The power company, Georgia Power, has got the poles down and they were down working on that last week,” Russell said.