When you go to the election booth in November, if you’re a resident of the City of Wilmington, you’ll have the opportunity to vote in support of a transportation bond which will go a long way toward supporting the needs of the community. The BASE Board of Directors voted unanimously in September to support the City’s transportation bond.
WHY SUPPORT THE TRANSPORTATION BOND?
• City has many identified transportation needs
• Transportation continues to be a high priority for City residents – Citizen Survey
• Citizens like trails/multi-use paths and want more of them – Comprehensive Plan input
• Lack of adequate funding needed to build transportation projects
This fall, voters will have the opportunity to decide whether the city can borrow money to begin $55 million in transportation projects. The City of Wilmington will need to sell $44 million in bonds to finance the 38 proposed transportation projects, which total an estimated $55 million. The remaining $11 million would come from existing funds. Voters will decide the future of these projects by voting for or against the transportation bond referendum on the November 4 ballot.
The bond would be repaid by increasing the City of Wilmington's property tax rate by 2 cents. This means that the average homeowner of a $200,000 home would pay $40 more per year, or $3.34 a month.
Traffic has consistently been a primary concern for citizens in years of citizen surveys. This fall, voters will have the opportunity to decide whether the city can begin $55 million in transportation projects. With less funding coming from the state and federal government, bonds are one of the only methods available to local governments to complete major projects necessary for a growing city.
The referendum for a $44 million bond will appear as a Yes/No vote on the Nov. 4 General Election ballot. While only $44 million will be on the referendum, the city would leverage existing funds to complete an entire package of projects worth $55 million. In 2006, voters passed a $14 million bond referendum which addressed some of the transportation needs within the city. Projects included widening Independence Boulevard to four lanes in some areas, streetscape improvements to North Third Street, the installation of sidewalks in high traffic areas, a traffic signal update and further investment in the city's neighborhood traffic management program.
The 2014 bond includes $35 million in road improvements and $20 million in bike/pedestrian improvements.
THE EXACT LANGUAGE ON THE BALLOT IS AS FOLLOWS—WE ENCOURAGE YOU TO VOTE YES!
Ballot language for Transportation (Street and Sidewalk) Bond
SHALL the order authorizing $44,000,000 of bonds plus interest to pay the costs of acquiring, constructing, reconstructing, widening, extending, paving, resurfacing, grading and improving streets, roads and intersections; acquiring, constructing, reconstructing and improving sidewalks or walkways, curbs, gutters, drains, bridges, overpasses, underpasses and grade crossings; constructing and improving walking and bicycle trails and greenways; and providing related landscaping, lighting and traffic controls, signals and markers; and the acquisition of land, rights-of-way and easements in land required therefor, and providing that additional taxes may be levied in an amount sufficient to pay the principal and interest on the bonds be approved?