BRADENTON, Fla. — With a shopping list of 305 infrastructure projects costing an estimated $333 million, Atlanta launched a second round of public meetings in September to discuss the need for a general obligation bond referendum next year.
The city hopes to schedule a referendum on March 17 to ask voters for permission to issue up to $250 million of GO bonds.
Some of the infrastructure projects eventually chosen for bond financing will be based on the ability to leverage federal and state funds, according to a website the city set up to explain the details.
Other projects will be selected based on factors such as sustainability, those that provide pedestrian and bike facilities, public health and safety needs, connection to transit, green infrastructure innovation, and neighborhood preservation.
On Sept. 10, the city launched a new digital interactive infrastructure map that allows residents to view potential projects and programs.
The website is one of the applications developed under the city's year-long participation in a Code for America Fellowship in which members and government staff work together to build applications designed to foster new approaches to problem solving at city hall.
"The new Atlanta Infrastructure Map allows residents to take part in an important conversation about our city's critical infrastructure needs," said Mayor Kasim Reed. "Our partnership with Code for America has put the city of Atlanta at the forefront of advanced civic technology."
The map allows residents to view the 305 projects that have been proposed for funding.
Atlanta faces an infrastructure backlog of more than $900 million, according to Reed.
Property taxes will not be increased to issue the bonds, Reed has said. He plans to implement waste and efficiency strategies recommended by a blue ribbon commission to reduce city expenditures.
Generally, the commission recommended funding recurring savings and new revenues by using property taxes raised through new construction, selling surplus assets, as well as implementing risk management and safety improvements and performance-based budgeting.
Atlanta's general obligation bonds are rated Aa2 by Moody's Investor Service and AA by Standard & Poor's. Both have stable outlooks.