Under HB 277, Georgia will be divided into 12 regions, each of which will hold a referendum in 2012 for a special 1 percent sales tax to be used for transportation improvements within that region. Individual counties cannot opt out of the funding plan, but a "roundtable" of local elected officials can decide not to hold a tax referendum in their regions, whose boundaries mirror those of Georgia's regional commissions, including the 10-county Atlanta Regional Commission. The bill also gives MARTA more flexibility to spend its sales tax revenues on new projects, a beginning step to helping the transit agency address a $120 million budget shortfall. Passed House and Senate.
SR 821 is a constitutional amendment that would allow the Department of Transportation to sign multi-year contracts for highway projects. Passed House and Senate, awaits final approval by voters in November.