Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Bright spots: Chambers loses, energy-efficiency amendment wins, and Clayton County wants MARTA

Posted By on Wed, Nov 3, 2010 at 2:42 PM

If the baby panda wasn't able to shake your post-election blues, here are some other glimmers of hope from last night's results.

* Jill Chambers, the Republican state lawmaker from DeKalb County who's made many an enemy among transit advocates for her harsh criticism of MARTA, lost her house seat last night to Democrat Elena Parent. Chambers was the only Gold Dome Republican to be ousted by a Democrat.

* Voters approved Amendment 4, which allows the state to partner with contractors to make public buildings and facilities more energy- and water-efficient. Advocates say the measure will create jobs, help the environment, and save taxpayers money.

* Clayton County voters overwhelmingly approved a nonbinding referendum that shows residents — who earlier this year saw their only transit agency shut down — want MARTA service. Transit advocates are thrilled, as it's the first time in 40 years a metro county has welcomed the transit agency. Plus, they say some of the one-cent sales tax revenue could be used to help fund long-planned commuter rail between Atlanta and Lovejoy. The downside: Tuesday night's ballot measure was a nonbinding referendum, so no buses or trains are going to run any time soon.

Other than that? Yep, pretty depressing.

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