Local governments ask electorate to participate in transportation phone poll

Regional Transportation

Words by Nichole Zangara / Election

The Town of Mountain Village, Town of Telluride and San Miguel County have hired Keating Research to conduct a phone poll beginning April 25. The phone poll is focused on questions related to transportation and the possibility of forming and funding the San Miguel Regional Transportation Authority (SMART transit). The results of this phone poll will provide direction from the electorate as government officials determine the best course of action for forming a SMART transit.

“The results of the poll will do three things. First, they will help inform the governmental entities as to the level of support for SMART transit. Second, we will better understand the electorate’s preferences for funding and enhanced services. And third, the results will help us formulate ballot language for a potential ballot question at the November election,” explained Mountain Village Town Manager Kim Montgomery.

Keating Research will conduct the phone poll from April 25 to April 29 between the hours of 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. and from April 30 to May 1 between the hours of 12 p.m. and 9 p.m. Voters registered in the R-1 School District may receive a call either on their land line or cell phone.

Lockstep with the November election, Mountain Village, Telluride and San Miguel County officials are in the midst of reviewing a draft intergovernmental agreement that would move them one step closer to taking SMART transit to the voters. According to all parties involved, they expect an agreement will be reached by May.

“This intergovernmental agreement is the product of several years of cooperative work between Telluride, Mountain Village and San Miguel County,” said County Commissioner Joan May. “It’s taken this long to come up with an agreement that we can all get solidly behind, that provides enough certainty for the Regional Transportation Authority framework, while giving enough flexibility to adapt to changing future variables.”

Objectives for forming the SMART transit vary and include enhanced local transportation services, the creation of regional transportation systems, and improved state and federal grant opportunities, to name a few.

“While there are indeed components of the SMART transit proposal that address immediate needs, the bigger objective here is planning for the future,” said Telluride Town Manager Greg Clifton.“Much of this effort truly represents a proactive means to provide regional resources to meet regional transit needs through time. This is what citizens expect of their local government.”

Local governmental entities will meet again on this matter April 28 beginning at 9:30 a.m. in Mountain Village Town Hall. For more information about the phone poll and the formation of SMART transit, visit townofmountainvillage.com/governing/regional-transportation.