Debate: Rogers, Beach Differ on TSPLOST Support
On June 25 in Cherokee County, the state Senate candidates had different views on the transportation sales tax, though Beach said it has more transit projects than he likes.
On the first day of early voting, Georgia Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers (R-Woodstock) on Monday repeated his stance against a controversial 10-year, 10-county transportation sales tax.
Tonight, July 10, Rogers and his opponent, Brandon Beach, are scheduled to debate the issues in Milton.
According to WSB Radio, Rogers held a press conference with members of the Transportation Leadership Coalition, a group that is working to defeat the referendum, commonly referred to as TSPLOST.
Calling it "the largest tax increase in our state's history," Rogers said many of the 157 TSPLOST projects will still need funding after the 10-year tax expires.
It wasn't the first time that Rogers echoed that sentiment, a position that puts him at odds with Gov. Nathan Deal, who urged voters to support the tax referendum during an appearance last month in Midtown, according to Midtown Patch.
At a June 25 debate at the Cherokee County Republican Party headquarters in Towne Lake, Rogers told a standing-room only crowd that he thought the TSPLOST was "ridiculous" and "a total and complete waste of money."
He said he would be the first to join a lawsuit if voters approve the tax referendum on July 31.
Rogers' opponent, state transportation board member Brandon Beach, said at that debate that he planned to vote for the tax.
"I don't like having all that transit in there," said Beach, who is president of the North Fulton Chamber of Commerce. "... But a penny dedicated to 157 projects you know you're going to get delievered very similar to an ESPLOST, I can support that concept."
"This (Atlanta Regional Transportation) Roundtable took an illegal act and decided to put money on this list for transportation projects for maintenance and operations," Rogers said. "I put into the bill a safeguard that said you absolutely cannot do that. That is prohibited. They decided to it anyway.
"If this $8 billion tax increase passes, I'll be the first person to say this is wrong because you violated the law in coming up with this list."
Click on the attached videos to watch what Beach and Rogers had to say during the June 25 debate at the Cherokee County Republican headquarters in Towne Lake.
- Early Voting Starts Today in Cherokee.
- The Transportation Tax and Marta.
- MARTA Won't Get Operations Funding.
- Lt. Governor Touts TSPLOST.
- Gov. Deal strongly endorses transportation sales tax.
- Opposing TSPLOST Campaigns Launch.
- Video: Cherokee Pans TSPLOST.
- 4 Cherokee Projects Make Final TSPLOST List.