Michigan governor OKs $175 million boost in road spending - WNEM TV 5

Michigan governor OKs $175 million boost in road spending

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Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed legislation to boost spending on roads and bridges.

The $175 million increase is 7 percent above existing spending. The Republican governor signed the bill Tuesday.

The move comes as frustrated motorists continue to face deteriorating, pothole-ridden roads.

Snyder and lawmakers approved a long-term $1.2 billion transportation funding boost in 2015, through a mix of higher fuel taxes and vehicle registration fees and fund shifts. But the plan is being phased in and the term-limited governor's infrastructure commission has said at least $2.2 billion more is needed annually.

Snyder is urging patience, saying it will take time to smooth the roads after years of disinvestment. He also says Congress should consider raising the federal gas tax and municipalities can explore local road taxes.

The Saginaw County Road Commission announced Tuesday they will receive $1,360,915 in unanticipated road funding due to the legislative boost. The additional money will be used on various road construction projects to improve over 39 miles of roads in Saginaw County.

Saginaw County Road Commission is allocating the funding toward several projects including:

  • Birch Run Road Chip and Seal from Sheridan Road to Birch Run Village Limits
  • Center Road at State Street Rehabilitation
  • Ditch Road Overlay from East to Sheridan (M-13)
  • King Road Chip and Seal from Williamson Road to Reese Road
  • Michigan and Tittabawassee Intersection Improvements
  • Miller Road Resurfacing from State to River Road
  • Shattuck Road Resurfacing from Center Road to Wieneke Road
  • 19.88 miles of Crack Seal on various primary roads

"I think they could've did better by us," said Michelle Williams, Flint resident.

Williams said the roads in Michigan are only getting worse and she doesn't think the state is doing much about it.

"We need just as great as roads as anybody else," Williams said.

The Genesee County Road Commission is looking forward to their cut of the funding.

Interim Road Commissioner Fred Peivandi said the county will share $2.3 million in unanticipated road funding. He said that money will go toward rebuilding primary road bridges, road preservation and local section line improvements.

Peivandi said it's not clear when the funding will reach Mid-Michigan.

Residents said they need the roads fixed sooner rather than later.

"I would love to see it happen, but do I believe that it will? Absolutely not," said Marshe Johnson, Flint resident.

She said she is hoping to be proven wrong.

"It costs a lot of money for people who just work regular jobs. It takes a lot of money to consistently replace a car because of the roads," Johnson said.

The Genesee County Road Commission said on average, it costs about $200,000 to repave a two-lane road for one mile.

That means the $175 million approved by Snyder could resurface about 875 miles. Michigan has an estimated 120,000 miles of paved roadways.

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