Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed says he’s talking with state legislators once again about solutions for the state’s transportation problems. But speaking at a policy conference in Atlanta Wednesday, Reed said it’s unlikely anything will happen before 2015.
Reed said lawmakers are in initial talks about counties partnering on transportation projects.
But it would be different from the statewide transportation tax vote that failed throughout most of Georgia in 2012.
Under the new approach, two or three counties, rather than ten, would voluntarily bond together to pay for new bridges, roads and transit projects.
Speaking at the Georgia Budget and Policy Institute conference, he said both Democrats and Republicans support that approach. And he said something needs to be done.
“Failure should not mean doing nothing and not addressing the problem," he said. "So if the solution needs to be smaller, if it needs to be two or three counties partnering together, on a smaller project, I'm willing to listen to that."
He said young people will leave if there's not some change in transportation policy.
“Our traffic conditions represent the most significant [threat] in addition to education and access to water to our dominance as the center of the economy in the Southeast,” he said.
Reed said he doubts there will be serious action on transportation and other issues this year because of the statewide elections in November.