Governor Granholm Calls for Legislation to Secure Regional Transportation for Southeast Michigan

Contact: Heidi Hansen 517-335-6397

July 6, 2005

LANSING – Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today called on state lawmakers to put partisan and geographical differences aside and pass legislation to enable local leaders to establish an effective regional transportation system in Southeast Michigan.

“A viable, effective public transit system is essential to both the near and long term social and economic well-being of Southeast Michigan,” Granholm said.  “The overall economic vitality of the region is at stake.  We are an interconnected community, and we must be able to connect to one another with ease.  The citizens of Southeast Michigan and the economy of Southeast Michigan have waited long enough.  The Legislature must act now.”

Granholm said an improved transportation system is critical to improving our economic strength by effectively connecting workers to employment; improving our human services by ensuring that families and seniors are connected to the services they need; and helping alleviate road congestion.

The Governor issued her call for the Legislature to act on a regional transportation plan following a Court of Appeals decision invalidating the Detroit Area Regional Transportation Authority (DARTA) agreement signed in 2003 by leaders in Metropolitan Detroit.

Granholm said she believes the Legislature must act to correct the Court of Appeals decision.  Doing so, Granholm said, will provide community officials with the legal authority they seek to build upon their cooperative efforts to create an effective public transportation system for residents of Southeast Michigan.

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