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County roadwork is proposed

Monday, April 28, 2014 - Updated: 9:14 AM

By PETE KLEIN

Express News Staff

LAKE PLEASANT -- Hamilton County Superintendent of Highways Tracy Eldridge plans to spend almost $1 million on road repair and maintenance this year.

State aid for local roads was frozen from 2008-12 while the cost of fuel and asphalt rose, straining Eldridge's budget. On top of that, much roadwork has been postponed to help keep the county budget down.

Eldridge, who has been county road boss since May 2004, is responsible for 94.49 centerline miles (the length of road in one direction of travel) of roadway. He has had to juggle which roads to repair and which to maintain.

But this year Eldridge is planning to spend $970,000 on roadwork. This is thanks to an increase in funding from the state's Consolidated Local Street and Highway Improvement Program (CHIPs) and projected increased revenues from the 1 percent hike in the county sales tax that went into effect Dec. 1, 2013.

This year's CHIPs allocation to Hamilton County will be $647,097, $56,325 or 9.53 percent higher than last year.

When the county supervisors met Tuesday, April 22, Eldridge proposed the following road projects, with CHIPs paying $540,000 for the first five and the county highway fund paying $430,000 for the last five.

1 - County Route 6, Benson Rd., Town of Benson, about half a mile - improving ditches and replacing culverts, grinding and adding base and paving at an estimated cost of $75,000.

2 - County Route 11, South Shore Rd., Town of Lake Pleasant, about one mile - improving ditches and replacing culverts, grinding and adding base and paving at an estimated cost of $130,000.

3 - County Route 12, Cedar River Rd., Town of Indian Lake, about two miles - improving ditches and replacing culverts, grinding and paving at an estimated cost of $185,000.

4 - County Route 24, Old Piseco Rd., Town of Arietta, about one mile - improving ditching and replacing culverts and 1.5 inches of hot mix asphalt overlay at an estimated cost of $100,000.

5 - Gilmantown Rd., Town of Wells - superstructure replacement of bridge over Charlie Lake Outlet at an estimated cost of $50,000.

6 - County Route 6, Benson Rd., Town of Benson, about 1.2 miles - hot mix asphalt surface treatment at an estimated cost of $100,000.

7 - County Route 11, South Shore Rd., Town of Lake Pleasant, about 1 mile - surface maintenance (micro paving / slurry) at an estimated cost of $35,000.

8 - County Route 21, Maple Grove Rd., Town of Hope, about 1.2 miles - surface maintenance (micro paving / slurry) at an estimated cost of $45,000.

9 - County Route 24, Old Piseco Rd., Town of Arietta, about 2.5 miles - surface treatment (micro paving / slurry) at an estimated cost of $100,000.

10 - County Route 7, Hope Falls Rd., Town of Hope, about 1.5 miles - 1.5 inches hot mix asphalt at an estimated cost of $150,000.

Eldridge said the estimated costs are based on material and equipment rental, if needed. The supervisors accepted the recommendations for further review and possible approval when they meet tomorrow, May 1.

Eldridge is warning town and village highway superintendents that he doesn't believe the increase in CHIPs this year will be there next year. He also suggests they use this year's increase because they will not be allowed to roll it over into next year.

peteklein@hamiltoncountyexpress.com

     

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