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County Commission Communications
A Periodic Column Written by Ed Douglas, Presiding Commissioner

Plans for County Roads
October 2016

A significant part of the County Commissioners long range needs study is to improve the condition of county roads. Livingston County has a township form of government comprised of 13 townships. In a township form of government, townships, (as managed by each township board) are responsible for maintenance of their township roads. Each township has approximately 50 miles of roads within their township. Each township has a township property tax which provides them limited funding.

As a result of this limited funding, nearly every township, with the exception of Chillicothe Township, owns one used motor grader operated by a part time person. This creates challenges for each township to maintain their roads sufficiently.

Our County Commission is proposing in our revenue issue for voters next April to partner with townships to improve county roads. Our plan, if approved by voters, would include installing drainage tubes needed by the Townships. Tubes are important and necessary for good road drainage and we estimate that we could install 100 tubes per year for the Townships. Additionally, if our proposal passes, we plan to provide equipment (truck and loader) and manpower (or alternately reimbursement for third parties serving this same function) to move rock and dirt that the motor grader operators bring up from the ditches. Removing the dirt from the roadway will make road maintenance much easier.

In another effort to improve our county roads, the Commissioners asked each of the townships to continue to maintain their roads like they always have but to maintain one mile as nearly "perfect" as they can get it. The plan is that before releasing CART rock funds (from Federal government) to the townships, each township must have that one mile inspected and approved. This concept has been successful and we hope to continue to add road miles that are done "perfectly" each year which should, in time, dramatically improve our county road system. Our long range goal is to make all county roads approach "perfect" by proper crowning of each road at the center with a gentle slope to the ditches so that water flows off the roads. Additionally, it is important to have good ditches on the sides of the road so that water can be drained from the roads.

We have also discussed making available additionally training to motor grader operators on the best practices in maintaining roads. It should also be noted that an additional part of our revenue plan to improve county roads includes funds to partner with the city on paving roads of mutual interest like Litton Road.

Road improvements are a work in progress, but we are committed to work with the City and the Townships to continue to improve county roads. A significant part of our long range plan for county revenue increase is the improvement of all county roads.

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