Mayor Gary Soiseth’s publc workshop on Turlock roads reconfirmed what Turlock residents already know, the condition of Turlock roads is deplorable and there is no definitive plan to provide a dedicated funding source to halt the deterioration. Last November, a majority of Turlock voters supported a sales tax that would have provided 100 percent of the funds to fix only Turlock roads; it fell short of the two-thirds voter approval needed.
Candidate Soiseth couldn’t support a measure that was totally under local control and which clearly defined when and what roads would be fixed. It included an independent citizen’s oversight committee to ensure funds were spent as expected.
Now Mayor Soiseth is advocating the best way to fix Turlock roads is to have the Stanislaus Council of Governments (StanCOG) determine expenditure formulas and the voters of Stanislaus County decide what is best for Turlock. This is all predicated on a countywide transportation tax. At present, there is no definitive county plan and only talk of placing a proposal on the 2016 ballot.
Meanwhile, Turlock residents have to put up with potholes and deteriorating streets. Turlock deserves better. We trust the new city council will consider all options and develop a plan to fix Turlock roads now.
Jim L. Theis, Turlock
Editor’s note: Theis chaired the Citizens for Yes on Measure B campaign committee. Measure B had 8,425 yes votes to 5,439 no votes, or a 60.7 percent approval rate. It needed 66.7 percent to pass.