State and federal governments do not have or will not give Pinal County the money needed to build new roads and freeways. If Pinal County residents do not step up and pay for it, local transportation will never get better. One ADOT planner said it would take the state of Arizona 800 years to fund and build all of the projects needed in Pinal County.
The Pinal County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved placing measures on the November ballot which call for $640 million in new freeway and road construction paid for by a half cent increase in the sales tax. Additional taxes will only be applied to purchases of $10,000 or less. The total cost for the average Pinal County household is $7.35 per month or 24 cents per day for the average Pinal County household.
The transportation package and ballot language had been previously approved by the Central Arizona Governments (CAG) association.
The coalition supporting the propositions represents a broad and diverse group of Pinal County residents, business leaders and government leaders.
The Pinal Regional Transportation Authority plan was carefully designed to take on a series of traffic challenges in Pinal County such as inadequate connections from I-10 to local roads and businesses, and inadequate north-south and east-west roadways. It was created after years of listening to the public and benefits every community in Pinal County.
This new transportation system will help eliminate congestion and traffic jams on I-10, I-8 and other existing roadways in Pinal County. No city can address these problems by themselves. A cooperative well-planned approach county-wide involving all cities is required.
The plan addresses significant increases in fatal and serious vehicle crashes because of increased traffic demands. In the past 10 years, there have been 323 fatal crashes, 878 serious injury accidents and 19,159 accidents. These numbers will continue to rise unless we do something about it.
New roads and freeways mean police officers, firefighters and ambulances will be able to get to our homes and businesses faster during emergencies because adequate streets and freeways are critical to help first responders to be there when we need them most.
Major traffic jams are common anytime there is an accident. New roads and new freeways will mean more options to avoid such problems and get home to your family faster.
Pinal County needs new roads and freeways before it is too late. When homebuilding picks up again, traffic will get even worse and be a total nightmare if Pinal County does not make improvements now.
If Pinal County wants to attract major employers, it must have an adequate transportation system to ensure the ability for businesses to move goods and services throughout the County. Easing traffic congestion would speed up commutes, improve Pinal County's quality of life, and create more jobs to help Pinal County's economy.
The plan is comprehensive with projects benefitting communities county-wide. More importantly, the plan addresses regional needs to keep traffic moving from community to community.
A sales tax rather than a property tax is the best way to pay for new transportation improvements because people visiting or shopping in Pinal County would then help pay for our roads. The cost for the average Pinal County household is just 24 cents per day for the average Pinal County household.
Better roads and more freeways will bring more economic development, and that will lower our property taxes.
New roads and freeways would mean more restaurants, shops and entertainment options for the area, as well as being able to get to existing businesses even faster.
As part of the plan, a Pinal County Citizens' Oversight Committee will help make certain the new revenues will be used for the road and freeways projects promised, and completed in a timely manner.