Better Transit Now

BTN Door Hanger          Start @ 5:08 mark of Soapbox Show

Vote No on Tuesday, May 6 – Tell the AAATA:

  • Use the existing 2-mill transit tax for more service and less overhead – currently 52 management staff and 37 support staff for only 133 drivers.
  • More taxes will make local housing even less affordable.
  • More empty buses will not reduce traffic or save energy.
  • No more funds for grandiose transit schemes.
  • Use current taxes to improve our bus system, not market new taxes.

If the millage passes, Ann Arbor taxpayers will be paying 30% more in local taxes for buses than for the roads we all use.

Flyer with complete information, org. chart, salary schedule and tax rate schedule.

9 thoughts on “Better Transit Now

  1. I believe that the salary information listed on the “AATA Information” page does not include fringe benefits which could add 40% to the listed salaries.

  2. Because of various distractions, I actually got around to looking up the BetterTransitNow.org site just this morning. It’s completely perfect, and cuts to the quick as far as I’m concerned. Thanks on behalf my household, neighbors, etc., and the rest of A2 voters who are paying critical attention to election issues. I want to make some further comments, but lack the time and space here, so I will hopefully be allowed to do so later. My thanks and admiration to all of you, and all the many AAATA drivers I know personally and admire. Doug Jewett, Ann Arbor.

  3. “More empty buses will not reduce traffic or save energy.” Absolutely! However, nothing about the proposal would result in empty buses. All of the proposed routes would be utilized.

  4. 2 mills is $200 per year for a $100,000 house, or $400 for $200,000, and so on. Is this cost not also passed on to renters, even though they don’t pay the tax directly?

    I’m all for bus or rail or other mass transit if it saves on traffic congestion and saves fuel. Mass transit is supposed to be more efficient, and saving fuel equates with saving money. Saving fuel could become more important in the future if fossil fuels become more expensive someday.

    I’ve been told the story about darkened windows hiding mostly empty bus interiors. People are paying a rather substantial special tax for something that was supposed to save money.

  5. Correct, if those are salaries, they do not reflect the true cost of a “Full Time Equivalent”.
    You have employer FICA contribution, benefits, costs of office space, coffee, anything that costs money to house employees, etc added on to this. If someone makes $125k the true cost can be near $250k.

    I have NO problem paying higher taxes for education (well used education funds) but this is crazy. We are a city/town of 116,000 people, why do we need such a wide reaching bus system??? Get a bicycle!

  6. I understand that you don’t want to
    pay any more taxes. Who does? Of course, I always like more money in my own pocket. But sometimes for the greater good of the community, I may be willing to part with some of my hard earned dollars.

  7. Someone I know raised the point that the buses are needed by the poor, elderly, or others who can’t or don’t want to drive. Fair enough, but the upcoming vote is not about getting rid of the buses, it’s about increasing the existing millage. Even if the buses are now serving women, children, the elderly and other unassailable groups, the reason for the decision to get the buses, as made by the people who were there at the time, was the Oil Embargo. The buses were supposed to save money. At the time voters might have believed that oil was running out, and that fuel would become too expensive for people to use their own cars. In a worst case scenario, the buses surely would have paid off. In retrospect, it seems the “crisis” was contrived.

  8. …for the greater good of the community…

    What does that mean? How does one evaluate that? Is there a scientific basis for that?

    If people are going to be asked to pay a substantial tax to subsidize a technology, then whoever is paying should demand a set of well-defined claims about the benefits of the technology, and some evidence supporting those claims.

  9. Usually, when someone asks for more money, they have to show that they’ve been responsible with the money they already have but this shows the opposite (and for comparisons, the second link is Madison, WI (a place with a school and similar population–notice how Madison’s cost per mile is falling yearly, whereas AAATA keeps rising)
    http://www.ntdprogram.gov/ntdprogram/pubs/profiles/2012/agency_profiles/5040.pdf
    http://www.ntdprogram.gov/ntdprogram/pubs/profiles/2012/agency_profiles/5005.pdf

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