Friends of Stop I-3 Coalition:
Those of us opposed to Interstate 3 have a rare opportunity to make our voices heard–and to make those voices really count. The U.S. Congress has asked the U.S. Department of Transportation to return $3.47 billion in previously approved appropriations. The federal DOT, in turn, is asking the states to recommend their projects for defunding. It is time to request that the I-3 study funds be at the top of this list. Removing the study funds would significantly delay the proposal, if not kill it completely. But we need your help.
We need to generate as many as possible emails and faxes suggesting this cancellation, Governor Perdues office has directed our comments be forwarded to the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT). Harold Linnenkohl is the Commissioner and the GDOT addresses are set forth below. Sending a note to the Governor will also help.
Let us repeat that we are on a very short time line. The recommendations from GDOT are due back to Washington by April 18, 2007. We need to get our comments into GDOT by Friday, April 13th, 2007. Two sample notes are included below. The most effective correspondence is one that you personally write; however, if you are short on time you may copy and paste one of these to your email or fax.
To contact GDOT:
To contact the Governors Office:
SAMPLE LETTERS TO COMMISSIONER LINNENKOHL
As you consider how to meet Georgias share of the $3.47 billion that the U.S. Congress has directed the Department of Transportation to rescind, we have a suggestion of a cut that will have no adverse impact: cancel the Interstate 3 (also called the Third Infantry Division highway) study. If the study is cancelled, we will also save Georgias 20% match of $330,000. Cutting the totally unnecessary study of a highway that will have a disastrous impact on the environment and economy of Northeast Georgia, Western North Carolina, and Eastern Tennessee will save money for high priority projects. The people of the area have already studied the impacts of this highway and the results are clear to see on www.stopi-3.org.
Thank you for your attention to this matter.
The US Congress has directed the Department of Transportation to rescind $3.47 billion of currently appropriated DOT funding. By letter to the states dated March 19, 2007, the DOT has requested each to identify their share of this cut and to return this list to the DOT within 30 days. Given the fact that the State of Georgia already has a $7 billion shortfall in our 5-year plan, these reductions must be done with care. One cut that can be done with no adverse impact is the cancellation of the Interstate 3 study. This will save $1.3 million other cuts to higher priority programs. In addition the states $330,000 share can be recalled and also applied to saving otherwise imperiled programs.
With the soon to be completed 4 lane roadway between Augusta and Savannah, the military justification for the I-3 project has been satisfied. The economic justification never existed, while the environmental and economic damage potential to the northeast Georgia Mountains is huge. A memorial to the 3rd Infantry Division, which could cost as much as $7 billion, is an embarrassment to our brave soldiers.
You are no doubt aware that your northeast Georgia counties are overwhelmingly opposed to this project. The Congress has provided a rare opportunity to correct a blatant pork barrel excess. We strongly encourage you to take advantage of this windfall and in the interest of sound fiscal policy, cancel this project.
YOUR VOICE CAN COUNT. PLEASE USE IT!