Published: Jul 27, 2012 2:29 PM EDT
Updated: Jul 28, 2012 6:31 AM EDT

ATLANTA (AP) - As anyone who has driven in Atlanta can tell you, the traffic is murder. Now the voters are being asked to do something about it.

On Tuesday, they will decide whether to approve a 1-cent increase in the sales tax to raise billions of dollars for transportation improvements.

Civic leaders say Atlanta's economic future hangs in the balance. They say the metropolitan area is in danger of losing business to more-livable cities unless it reduces congestion.

But Republican conservatives don't trust government to use the money responsibly.

Black Democrats say the plan doesn't do enough to help poor people and minorities, in part because it devotes little to mass transit.

And environmental groups fear more pollution and development.