County changes road funding planBy MEGAN PHILLIPS,
Madison County supervisors have changed up the funded road plan… again.
During the latest November board meeting, District 2 Supervisor Trey Baxter had a lot of roads to remove and add, and money to move around.
Baxter pulled Greens Crossing Road ($350,000), Stout Road ($414,000), Catlett Road ($183,000), Virlilia Road west ($2 million), and Countryside Place ($125,000) from the road plan.
The District 2 supervisor added the Northridge subdivision ($273,600), Beaumont Drive ($17,000), Danford Drive ($30,900), Dirby Cove ($2,240), Farewell Blvd. ($2,820), Hazelton Drive ($53,130), Hellena Drive ($6,960), Leads Court Drive ($1,670), Newton Court ($7,420), Owen Court ($1,380), Turnon Blvd. ($7,530), Madison Avenue ($67,500), Oak Park Drive ($46,500), U.S. Highway 51 entrance to Cross Creek ($14,000).
These were added to the Madison city and Madison County interlocal agreement, where the price for improvements are matched equally by the city and the county.
“The county portion will be $532,754.25,” Chancery Clerk Ronny Lott said.
Baxter also moved the $334,000 that would be used on Cherry Hill Road to help fund the 50-50 interlocal plan; $350,000 of the Virlilia Road west money will go toward Cherry Hill Road, while another $250,000 of Virlillia Road west money will go toward Park Place.
The $125,000 from Countryside will help fund the county’s portion of the agreement.
The remaining $1.4 million to Virlilia will go toward the Weisenberger Road study and flooding issue.
The $350,000 from Greens Crossing will go toward the Gluckstadt Road widening project design.
“I’d like to instruct (County Engineer Dan Gaillet) to take the next step in the designing and engineering process on Gluckstadt and Weisenberger roads,” Baxter added, saying Gaillet’s work would be funded by money that would’ve gone toward the Madison Avenue project.
“(Weisenberger) floods when it rains real hard,” he said. “They shut it down or people have to drive through flood water, and that’s (District 1 Supervisor Sheila Jones’) district. Gluckstadt had 17,000 cars on it, and a traffic study has determined it needed to be widened…”
The Gluckstadt Road traffic study was completed by Neel-Schaffer and is on the Madison County Web site, along with an update on the South Madison County Transportation Study. Neel-Schaffer originally completed the transportation study last year.
All of Baxter’s separate motions for the road plans changes passed with a 3 to 2 vote, with District 3 and 4 supervisors Gerald Steen and David Bishop opposing.
“Early in the year, District 2 got completely cut out of the road plan,” Baxter said. “Three supervisors decided to cut District 2 out, and (District 5 Supervisor Paul) Griffin changed his mind and thought we needed help with our infrastructure.”
After the changes were made, Griffin made a motion to take out a short-term bond in the amount of $3.3 million.
“The way I’ve recommended short-term borrowing is to use the money in the general fund reserves to pay back that short-term borrowing,” County Administrator Shelton Vance told Griffin. “I think we ended the 2017 fiscal year around $17.5 million, and I think we’re going to use $1 million of that, which puts us down to $16.5 million. So, you’ve got several million dollars, at least $3 million, that you can plan to use for debt repayment over the next couple of years.”
With that, Griffin made a motion to authorize the county’s bond attorney to draft a short-term bond in the amount of $3.3 million, with $2.7 million going toward the Gluckstadt Road widening project and $500,000 going toward improvements in Sulfur Springs Park.
Griffin’s motion passed with a 3 to 2 vote, with Steen and Bishop opposing again.