As individual members of the SPLOST 2016 Oversight Committee, we take issue with Commissioner Browning’s criticism that the SPLOST Oversight Committee has overstepped our mission.
We are volunteers, appointed by county commissioners “to ensure that SPLOST projects are completed in an efficient, transparent, and fully accountable manner and in keeping with the purposes of the overall SPLOST program.”
SPLOST is a tax, paid by Glynn County visitors and citizens. Our committee’s purpose is to ensure that tax dollars are spent wisely and appropriately.
If something isn’t right, it’s our responsibility to point this out. Commissioner Browning prefers we stick to verifying information the county provides.
That is not stewardship of $72 million worth of taxpayer-funded projects.
The commissioners proposed constructing roundabouts on each end of East Beach Causeway as “intersection improvements” after Glynn County voters approved SPLOST. They were not listed as “projects” in the SPLOST 2016 resolution, not mentioned in the county town hall meetings, and were not on the SPLOST ballot.
At $2.2 million, coupled with concerns about their efficacy, we questioned whether roundabouts were the best use of tax money, and if there were less costly alternatives.
We invited a traffic engineer to a SPLOST meeting to discuss alternatives. Commissioner Browning was there but instead of discussing other approaches, Browning told us we were overstepping our role.
In our report, we proposed the roundabouts be delayed until a planned comprehensive traffic study is completed. That gives the commissioners an opportunity to hear a professional opinion.
Sadly, Commissioner Browning is deaf to our recommendation, choosing to lecture us rather than trying to wisely spend tax dollars.
Lance Sabbe, Chairman
Philip Graitcer, Vice Chairman
Jane Fraser, Member