Thanks again to all who helped support transit in Ypsilanti last fall – here’s the next chance to make your voice heard: county-wide transit plan meetings are being held throughout February!
AATA and its regional partners spent the fall doing an assessment of the existing transit system and the needs across Washtenaw County – they’ve now produced three potential scenarios for review and discussion.
During the charter amendment campaign, we heard how important transit is to Ypsilanti – and we heard a lot of support for additional options: commuter rail. Amtrak service. Express bus service. Late-night service. Additional Township service. All these options and others are considered in the scenario planning – make sure you show up to a meeting and make Ypsi’s interests heard!
Meetings in Ypsilanti include:
- Thursday, February 3, 6-8pm – Whittaker Road Library
- Monday, Feb. 7, 11am-1pm – WCC Morris Lawrence Building
- Monday, Feb. 7, 6-8pm – SPARK East, downtown Ypsilanti
- Wednesday, Feb. 9, 11am-1pm – EMU Student Center, Rm. 350
- Wednesday, Feb 16, 9-11am – SPARK East, downtown Ypsilanti
There are 20+ meetings in all – check the full schedule if you can’t attend any of these.
Today’s AnnArbor.com article by Tom Perkins does a great job of summarizing why public transit needs your support at the polls:
[Bus commuter Leon Womack] and his wife live nearby, and she recently got a job at Visteon working the same shift he works at the University of Michigan Hospital. That means he will ride the bus to work everyday. Without the bus service, he says he would likely be forced to buy a second car because there’s no cheap transportation alternative in the region.
“The bus system has to be top of the line because without the bus routes a lot of people wouldn’t be able to get to work or to where they’re going,” he said.
“Without the bus routes a lot of people wouldn’t be able to get to work” – or to school, or to the doctor, or to buy groceries. Public transit is a critical part of these families’ lives, and a critical part of Ypsilanti’s local economy.
Without public transit, many of our neighbors would be cut off from their jobs and other destinations: “It is VERY important for me to have bus service as an Ypsilanti resident. I do not have a car, so if there were no bus service in Ypsilanti I would not be able to get to and from work. It would also hinder me from seeking medical care for me and my son, and would hinder me from being able to run normal errands like grocery shopping,” one rider told us.
Others would be forced to move. “Having the bus allows me to live in Ypsilanti and provides me a sustainable way to get to work, and was a huge factor for me when I chose to live in Ypsilanti. The bus allows me to live in the community I love living in,” another said.
The entire Ypsilanti community benefits from public transit. Show your support: Vote YES on the Charter Amendment for Public Transit on Tuesday.
Keep Ypsi Rollin’ has a busy week ahead!
On Sunday, Oct 3rd, listen for Murph on WLBY 1290AM, 2-3pm, talking about the Charter Amendment with host Candace Pinaud. Thanks, Candace!
We also need volunteers for door-to-door canvassing, this and every Sunday until the election: Stop by 909 Grant Street between 1 and 4pm Sundays to get an address list and doorhangers.
Join us at Frenchies in Depot Town, 4-7pm, Monday the 4th for an open house fundraiser. Details on Facebook or Evite.
Tuesday morning, the Chamber’s First Tuesday Breakfast will feature Mayors Schreiber and Hieftje talking about the Charter Amendment’s importance to both Ypsilanti and Ann Arbor.
Then, Wednesday, hop over to AATA’s Countywide Transit Master Plan meeting, 11am-1pm at the Ypsilanti Township Community Center, or check the schedule for the next meeting.
Thursday evening, we’ll be talking to East Prospect Park Neighborhood Association about the Charter Amendment for Public Transit – contact us to speak at your next meeting: email@example.com or 734-904-0524.
It’s an exciting time for transit, and we’re glad to be a part of it!
The State of Michigan is in the early stages of developing a State Rail Plan that will cover both passenger and freight rail.
to submit your vision for passenger rail in Michigan, or go to MDOT’s new website
, where you can make official comment.
It takes just a couple of minutes. Keep Ypsi Rollin’ encourages this first step in determining a new passenger rail future for Michigan.
Keep Ypsi Rollin’ (KYR) is a ballot question committee formed to pass a Charter Amendment for public transit in Ypsilanti. Through an error, the issue was printed on the August 3 primary ballot, yet those votes do not count toward the Charter Amendment. The actual vote to support public transit is during the general election on November 2, 2010.
On August 3, however, Ypsilanti voters supported public transit. Voters of Ypsilanti chose to pass the Charter Amendment to dedicate ongoing funds to Public Transit. Votes are still being tabulated, but it appears to have won by a significant margin.
“This is a major victory for Public Transit and the City of Ypsilanti,” says Richard Murphy, co-chair of KYR. “Our committee is proud of the stance our voters took today. We will work to pass it just as strongly when the valid vote occurs in the general election on November 2.”
KYR believes that public transit is important to the overall health of both Ypsilanti and the overall region. KYR hopes that voters in the upcoming general election continue to support this important cause, when the vote really matters.
“Ypsilanti needs public transit to be guaranteed for our residents, employees, and customers,” said Beth Bashert, co-chair of KYR. “Historically, having to vote to pass funding for public transit every other year has given the perception that public transit might be unstable. That perception will disappear if this Charter Amendment passes in the general election.”
Keep Ypsi Rollin’ will be hard at work over the next three months to pass the Charter Amendment for Public Transit on November 2.
For more news and updates on this important campaign, please continue to visit this website.
Remember to turn your ballot over and vote YES for the Charter Ammendment for Public Transit!
This election will be set aside but we will want you to vote YES. Let’s show everyone how much Ypsilanti supports Public Transit by voting to support it every time we see it on a ballot!
The Charter Amendment for Public Transit is officially on Ypsilanti ballots for the November 2, 2010, general election! City Council placed the question on the ballot at their July 20 meeting, again expressing their unanimous support for public transit.
While the question will still appear on the August ballot, the results will be invalid due to a technical error. Keep Ypsi Rollin’ encourages you to vote YES in August anyways, to practice for November.
You can also help Keep Ypsi Rollin’ in other ways:
- Request a yard sign – send your name and address to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll plant one in your yard for you!
- Send a donation to Keep Ypsi Rollin’, 308 Maple, Ypsilanti, MI 48198.
- Make sure your neighbors know how important public transit is to Ypsilanti’s residents, businesses, and neighborhoods, and ask them to support the Charter Amendment.
Keep Ypsi Rollin’ has learned that, due to a technical error, the August 3 vote on the Charter Amendment for Public Transit will not be counted. The following press release has been provided to local media outlets:
Ypsilanti voters will have two chances this year to demonstrate their support for public transit as a critical service to the city. Keep Ypsi Rollin’ has learned that the “Charter Amendment for Public Transit” appearing on the City’s August 3rd primary ballot will not count due to a technicality, and will reappear on the ballot on November 2, 2010.
Under State law, a charter amendment may not be decided on a primary election ballot. Since the City of Ypsilanti’s ballots for the August primary have already been printed including the Charter Amendment for Public Transit, voters will see the measure on August 3, but the vote will not count. The measure will reappear on the November general election ballot for an actual decision.
Keep Ypsi Rollin’ encourages all supporters of public transit to vote YES in both August and November.
“Ypsilanti understands the importance of public transit,” said Richard Murphy of Keep Ypsi Rollin’. “We are disappointed that the August vote will not count, but we see this as an opportunity to let even more people know that they have the chance to support transit service.”
The Charter Amendment would provide secure, dedicated funding for the City of Ypsilanti’s contract for bus service via AATA. This service has been threatened by budget cuts over the past several years, and City and AATA officials have indicated that a “no” vote on this Charter Amendment would probably result in drastic cuts or complete elimination of Ypsilanti’s bus service. Over 600,000 riders board AATA buses every year in the City of Ypsilanti, using The Ride to get to work or school, to get to the doctor, or to buy groceries. Losing bus service would strand these riders, hurting Ypsilanti’s tax base and local economy.
The Ypsilanti City Council has expressed its support of the Charter Amendment. Mayor Paul Schreiber says, “Between now and November let’s get the message out: The transportation charter amendment will ensure AATA bus service in Ypsilanti and provide a foundation to improve bus and rail transportation throughout Washtenaw County. Vote for the transportation amendment on August 3 and November 2!”
Keep Ypsi Rollin’ (KYR) is a ballot question committee formed to pass this important measure. KYR will hold events, educate voters and raise funds for the purpose of helping Ypsilanti protect long term public transit for its citizens, businesses and future!
AnnArbor.com has covered this issue in the article, Ypsilanti transportation millage won’t be decided in August.
Public transit is a vital part of the Ypsilanti community for many reasons.
For some residents, transit provides a lifeline connection to work or school. For Ypsilantians too young or too old to drive, public transit may be the only option available. For others, public transit may be a choice that allows them to save money, or make productive use of their commute.
Why does transit matter to you? Use the comment box below to tell us:
The Keep Ypsi Rollin’ campaign needs your donations for things like flyers and yard signs to help get the word out.
Checks may be made out to Keep Ypsi Rollin’, and mailed to,
Keep Ypsi Rollin’
Ypsilanti, MI 48198
Thank you for your support!