County gets $1.2M increase in road funds
Tuesday, August 13, 2013 11:00 AM
Local Indiana governments will receive additional state funding for roads, bridges and highway projects over the next two years.
In its 2014-2015 budget, the General Assembly, established a local roadway funding increase of $7.2 million statewide. The state's fiscal year began July 1.
In Jefferson County, government entities are set to receive more than a $1.2 million increase in funding over the two-year span - more than $600,000 each year.
A nearly $500,000 increase will go to county government, which oversees a majority of area roads and every bridge in the county and city limits. The city of Madison will receive an additional $100,000 in funding, while Hanover will receive nearly an extra $30,000.
Scott County will receive $400,000 in additional funding, while Switzerland County will be given an increase of $300,000 both years.
Commissioner Mark Cash said the additional funding will help the county because in previous years it has taken $500,000 from its Economic Development Income Tax (EDIT) account for paving projects.
"We're planning on applying as much as we can to paving," Cash said.
Even with the additional funding, the county will be far off from resurfacing all of its 350 miles of paved road, Cash added.
Resurfacing costs about $65,000 every mile, and Cash said the county has several miles of road that rank well below the 50 percent quality mark. The grading system was implemented by former county engineer Jim Olson, who retired earlier this year. County crews evaluate each road and then target the ones with the lower grades.
"It would cost us several millions of dollars to get all of our roads back up to 60 to 70 percent," Cash said.
At issue now is waiting for the funding to come. If the state doles out some of the funding before the end of the summer - the ideal paving time period - there is a chance the county could repair some of its roadways still this year.
"Right now, that's our big question," Cash said.