What is the Public Transportation Improvement Millage?
On May 6, 2014, voters in Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Township will have the opportunity to approve a millage of 0.7 mills for five years to help fund transit improvements that will provide 44% more transit service, increase services to the elderly and disabled, and help spur economic activity in the Ann Arbor Area Transit Authority’s (AAATA) member communities.
How much would the millage raise?
In its first year, the millage would generate approximately $4.3 million – $3.3 million from Ann Arbor, $800,000 from Ypsilanti Township and $200,000 from the city of Ypsilanti. Funds raised by the millage would also leverage dollars from the state and federal governments (every dollar of local funds generates approximately $2 additional dollars from these sources). These funds, along with fares from passengers and funds received from purchase of service agreements (POSAS) from non-member local governments, would pay for the improved services.
How much would the millage cost me?
The owner of a home valued at $100,000 in the millage area (Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Township) would pay about $35 per year (or about .67 cents per week). The owner of a home valued at $200,000 would pay only $70 a year (or about $1.35 per week)…less than the cost of a cup of coffee per week.
How would the additional transit millage funds be used?
The AAATA will use the additional funding to meet the transportation needs that residents and community leaders have requested in the three communities, including:
- Expanded Dial-A-Ride services for seniors and people with disabilities.
- More direct service through redesigned routes.
- Extended hours on weekday nights.
- Extended weekend service on fixed routes (earlier start times, much later end times).
- Improved bus stops.
Is the 2014 transit millage increase necessary?
Yes. The existing millage pays for existing services. The new millage is needed to pay for new and improved services desired by area leaders and a strong majority of residents in all three communities, according to feedback received from dozens of community meetings and discussions.
Will the proposed millage increase be distributed fairly among taxpayers in each municipality?
Yes. The new additional service hours generated within each jurisdiction totals about 57,000 hours for Ann Arbor, nearly 8,500 more hours of service for Ypsilanti as well as at least 9,400 hours of new service for Ypsilanti Township citizens