County needs public road priority list

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The road to re-election in small-town America needs to be smooth, freshly paved and pothole free.

Everyone wants the path to his own house to be a nice one, and the man or woman who can ensure it has likely earned a vote.

That’s why Monday’s move by the Adams County Board of Supervisors should be taken with a grain of salt.

Though we have no doubt the eight county roads pegged for work need it, it’s the waffling that led to Monday’s vote that seems worrisome.

The issue really started months ago when members of the current board — due up for re-election in 2011 — appeared on the verge of taking out a $6 million road bond without sharing their plans for the money with the taxpayers.

A bad bond rating put the brakes on the bond issue, temporarily, but now board members seem to be going at the issue one road at a time.

First the board delayed a decision on a request from two supervisors to pay the match for a grant that would pave gravel roads.

Then a motion to repair damaged Deer Lake Road died without a second.

Finances were a concern, some board members said, and it was best to wait for the bond issue.

But Monday the board unanimously approved paving six roads and striping two others.

What they didn’t do, however, was provide a payment plan for their project.

We urge the county adopt a long-range plan that includes a prioritized schedule of which roads need paving so taxpayers and voters don’t have to guess whether or not our dollars are being spent wisely or for an early re-election bid.