Calera council focuses on truck bypass

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Calera Mayor George Roy knows the push for a truck bypass around his growing city needs some support from state and national lobbyists.

During Monday’s Calera City Council meeting, Roy discussed last week’s trip of Calera officials to Washington D.C.

Roy said he and two council members met with Alabama’s U.S. Congressmen, including Rep. Spencer Bachus, Sen. Richard Shelby and Sen. Jeff Sessions.

&uot;We need somebody to do our lobbying for us,&uot; Roy said.

Already, Calera has completed traffic studies including truck counts and preliminary engineering plans for a truck bypass around the city.

For years, Calera leaders have complained about the large volume of industrial truck traffic through the city, which they say disrupts traffic and damages roads.

On Monday, Roy said the city needs $10 million in federal money to build the bypass.

Roy said he thinks the city’s ongoing preliminary work will eventually pay off.

&uot;We’ve got our work cut out for us, I assure you, but we’ve got something now to rely on with the truck count and engineering study,&uot; Roy said.

Council member Tommie Lynn Morrison also went to Washington D.C. to help gain support for the bypass. She said the city did all they could during the trip, but it received no actual funding commitment.

Still, Morrison said the city is closer than ever in getting a bypass.

&uot;As far back as I can remember, we’ve tried to get a truck bypass. This time I think we have the proper documentation and a good plan,&uot; she said.

Morrison said she spoke with Sessions, Shelby and Bachus, and she hopes they will remember Calera during their bid for re-election this year.

&uot;Several of these gentlemen are running for re-election this summer, so maybe that will work in our favor,&uot; she said.

Morrison said last week’s trip to the nation’s capital was part of an extended effort to make connections with people that can help Calera build a bypass.

&uot;It’s going to take more than just city officials to get a truck bypass. We smiled at all the people we needed to smile at,&uot; she said