Mobility Bond: Ready, Set, Go
Roads? Where we're going, we don't need roads.
Shoal Creek Saloon was an island of victory in a sea of defeat, as Proposition 1 supporters celebrated passage of the $90 million transportation bond package – and looked toward the next round of mobility investment.
Reached soon after the release of early voting results, which gave Prop. 1 supporters a 10,000-vote lead, Mayor Lee Leffingwell predicted the proposition's lead would widen slightly, an estimate borne out by final tallies: 56.3% for, 43.7% against. "I absolutely believe we have to start thinking about transportation as a system, with lots of different parts that connect to each other and complement each other, more than just a single thing," he said. While noting that roughly 60% of the package is still devoted to road work, he said, "for the first time, we get to catch up on our other modes of transportation."
Austin City Council Member Sheryl Cole, a Prop. 1 supporter who had previously questioned its impact on the city's overall bonding capacity, was on hand at Shoal Creek Saloon Tuesday night. "I was concerned about the process, and you can never have enough transparency in the process, but once we passed those hurdles and we voted it out, it was time to take it to the voters, and we took it to them strong."
The mayor addressed the crowd, beginning by thanking several Prop. 1 proponents, including Get Austin Moving PAC's Ted Siff, who, in Leffingwell's words, "almost single-handedly raised over $100,000. And let me add, we needed every penny of that."
Prop. 1 "is the first step in a very long journey," he said. "It's going to take a generation to successfully address the traffic problems that Austin has. ... When I ran for mayor, I said that I was going to put a transportation bond on the ballot in November 2010. It wasn't everything we wanted it to be this November, but we're already working on a companion mobility package that we hope to put on the ballot in November 2012, put it back before the voters, with the same guiding principles."
|Early Voting||Election Day||Total|
|For||49,044 (55%)||42,677 (58%)||91,721 (56%)|
|Against||40,713 (45%)||30,441 (42%)||71,154 (44%)|