Monday, May 21, 2012

Clark Howard endorses transportation tax

Posted By on Mon, May 21, 2012 at 3:47 PM

Clark Howard, the consumer advocate and media personality who's helped protect countless metro Atlantans from huckster scam artists trying to sell bridges and broke-ass Betamax players, says he'll vote for the regional transportation tax on July 31.

Howard made the announcement during a 750 WSB-AM Radio roundtable about the tax on Friday morning with news anchor Scott Slade and Captain Herb Emory, the traffic reporter who points out all the car crashes that clog metro Atlanta's highways. From a press release by Citizens for Transportation Mobility, the business community's PR campaign to urge voters to approve the tax:

"I hate tax, that's pretty obvious from everything I've said over the years, but I am emphatically for this. We as a metro area have no prospects for growth right now, nobody wants to move their companies here, we are flat on our backs right now," Howard said. "We are so in the weeds here that if we do not adopt this and move forward, it's not Armageddon but it means Atlanta moves from being one of the key cities of America to the backwater. We have to face the facts that we have to take a leap of faith. As things stand now, we are moving to the back of the pack." [...]

"I started off being completely opposed to this. The more I've learned about it, the more I think we need to do this," Howard added. "This is our chance to have local control of the money and where the money goes. We collect the money here and we spend it here."

What didn't make the press release is Howard's claim that metro Atlanta, which has a "dysfunctional system of government," has lost its "mojo" and momentum. "If we were the Kentucky Derby, we're becoming the horse that has 100-to-1 odds," he said.

Whether Howard's endorsement makes a difference remains to be seen. Captain Herb Emory, for what it's worth, says he still doesn't decided how to vote on the measure. And that's the endorsement we're all waiting for, folks!

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