LIMA — The Allen County Engineer’s Office will be putting its road maintenance plan together next month, meeting with township trusees and municipal representatives to determine what roads need repairs or maintenance.
“Prior to the meetings, our east side and west side crews drive the roads with each individual township and evaluate their roads,” roadway engineer Dave Louth said. “We then organize a wish list, and that wish list is then estimated in terms of dollars it would cost to repair that road, whether it be paving, sealing or some other type of work.”
On April 4 and 6, the engineer’s office will meet with each township to discuss and prioritize the roads in need of work, with a final meeting with all the townships and county commissioners to go over the roadway plan scheduled for April 18.
“We determine which ones they want to keep (on the list) and which ones can be put off until next year,” Louth said.
That cost will be affected by the cost of materials for repairs, such as asphalt.
“It looks like we’ll have the standard inflation rates, going up maybe 50 cents a ton or so, with none of the big fluctuations like we had a few years ago,” Louth said.
The county is responsible for roughly 350 miles of roadway, with townships in charge of 550 miles of roads in Allen County.
A milder winter bodes well for summer work, since that money can be shifted to funding summer road repairs.
“Winter is not over yet, as I keep telling the guys,” Louth said. “The snow plowing and salt usage is down, which frees up some money that can be used through the summer months. Our winter determines what we do in the summer. We always have to have the money to plow the roads and maintain them. So what’s left over from the winter can be used for the summer.”
The county spends between $500,000 and $600,000 a year in its road program. Funding for road work comes through license plate fees and taxes on gasoline.