There were 5 total NCTCOG public feedback meetings held over the last 13 months. There was not a single one that had any public support for any type of tollroad in the Blacklands Corridor. I challange everyone to look up the public records of all 5 meetings and read the feedback spoken and written in by letters or email.
These articles below aren’t cherry picked to support a point of view, they reflect what the people want. We all expect the NCTCOG and our elected representatives to support the people and not force another tollroad on the citizens of Texas. That’s what representatives do, they find a solution from the people, for the people, not their own echo chamber.
“About 1,300 people attended a Sept. 22 public meeting in Rockwall hosted by the North Central Texas Council of Governments Transportation Division. Almost all of those in attendance expressed opposition to a proposed toll road connecting Greenville with far northeast Dallas County.”
“It seems likely, though, that the NCTCOG has found both a need for the tollway and has agreed to let the Texas Turnpike Corp. be the one to build it. At a joint NCTCOG/Texas Turnpike meeting Monday, Morris and other agency staffers announced that they had finished their long-awaited study into the toll proposal, which they lumped in with a general study about the entire area they identified as the Blacklands Corridor. They presented their results in a packet of PowerPoint slides and said that Monday’s meeting would be the final government meeting on the topic.”
“The survey of more than 5,000 Texans was conducted by the Texas A&M Transportation Institute in May to study how Texans get around and their views on transportation funding. Building more toll roads was, by far, the least supported strategy,” the report states. “The lack of support held true in both metropolitan areas and rural areas, as well as areas with and without toll roads.”
A very well written letter to the editor in the Greenville Herald Banner. Click HERE to read “Get involved with elected officials' decision”.
This is the article that is referenced at the beginning of the letter to the editor: SH 66 to be Widened
I met with Rep. Dan Flynn yesterday in Austin. He is well aware of our situation. However, the only people he has heard from in person are those in favor of the road. He is in favor of public-private-partnerships as a means for funding roads in Texas. But he also realizes the importance of private property rights NOT being abused through eminent domain. He most likely can not and will not stop this road. He will, however, work to ensure the citizens are most fairly compensated for our loss. His best advice, “DON’T TAKE THE FIRST OFFER!” and “STICK TOGETHER!”
By the way, the advice he gave is basically the same as what the eminent domain lawyer said. I don’t think this means we as a group give up our fight against the road. This is a worst case scenario of what we do at the very end if/when it comes down to that. Hopefully, based on the RTC meeting last night, things are going to be moving a little slower.
Dan Flynn will meet with anyone who will make an appointment. It’s not that far to Austin and he has local offices. I encourage EVERYONE to take the time to talk to him IN PERSON. He said we were the only 2 people he had seen who were opposed to the road. I may not agree with everything he does, but he treated us with dignity and respect. Our local leaders could learn a thing or two from him about how to handle the public when the public is not on the same side as they are. At least Flynn didn’t accuse us of being conspiracy theorists and spreading fear and panic.
Check out this event scheduled for March 12 in Austin. We need our voice to be heard by our elected officials. Phone calls and letters are good, but showing up in person is even better. Click on the following link.
**** TURF LOBBY @ TEXAS STATE CAPITOL ****
I was contacted today by Jannis Milton (spelling?) and she stated she is a representative for Rep. Flynn and was responding to my letter against the proposed toll road project.
She stated that Rep. Flynn’s office has received numerous complaints, calls and letters all in opposition to the proposed toll road.
It was their (Rep. Flynn’s office, www.daflynn.com), understanding that this proposed toll road would be within the right of way that NETEX already owns.
I mentioned that NETEX only owns on average 100 foot of right of way and the meeting notes from NETEX and COG state that the proposed toll road is a profit making project to build a new commercial RR on the preexisting right of way. All of the supposed benefits( reduce I30 congestion, bring economic development, etc) are selling points, not the objective of the Toll Road. NETEX is solely focused on raising funds, regardless of the impacts to the current property owners concerns. I mentioned the 6-5 vote at NETEX because of some reps at NETEX are against the project because of the impact and the lease agreement as written. She was unaware of that vote. I mentioned that the meeting notes state that the toll road will need a total of 200 foot additional right of way and that the lease approved on Jan 9 requires that 50 foot of the current abandoned RR must remain for future development. This is a 200 foot total right of way being requested. I mentioned that if the toll road runs adjacent to the NETEX right of way, or through the developed farms, ranches and homes North or South of the abandoned RR, these homes, ranches and farms would have to be removed by both agreement to sell to NETEX and imminent domain for the owners that refuse to be bought out. Many are not willing to just take a check and give up on their way of life and their land for a private profit making scheme.
This started a conversation where she stated that Rep. Flynn has proposed legislation that would restrict the use of imminent domain more than it has been in the past.
Many of the topics we discussed were news to her, and she was unaware of the pace, scope and facts that have been accumulating since the Hunt Co. Commissioners Court meeting that tabled this motion for more time to study it.
I ask everyone that has been contacted by Rep. Flynn’s office to add your comments of your discussion on this blog for others to read.
She strongly stated that his office will be closely watching this proposed project and that if anyone has any additional concerns to not hesitate to contact his office by email or phone.