ATLANTA (AP) -- When Georgia voters head to the polls on July 31 to weigh in on a proposed regional transportation sales tax, some of the state's political and business leaders claim they will be deciding no less than the future of the region for decades to come.
The referendum calls for a penny sales tax in 12 districts, potentially raising billions of dollars to fund hundreds of infrastructure projects over the next 10 years.
Supporters say the tax would add jobs, unclog traffic and fix sidewalks and bridges in rural communities. Critics blast the plan as the heftiest tax proposal in state history and say it addresses neither sprawl nor smart growth.
The showdown pits power and money against an unlikely grassroots coalition, and could have economic, legal and political implications.