By Ryan Welch
Huntsville City Council budgets $1.5 million per year in local funding for resurfacing damaged city roads.
Mayor Andy Brauninger and the councilmembers discussed which roads would be repaired this year. Portions of Veterans Memorial Parkway, as well as parts of 22nd Street, Avenue Q, Eastham Street, Wimbledon Drive and 30 other streets were approved for resurfacing.
Councilmember Tish Humphry asked the Public Works Director Brent Sherrod if unexpected problems during road repair would result in cost overruns.
“There is always a chance that we can find something that we didn’t know about that increases the cost of the project, but we wouldn’t expect that to be that case. That hasn’t been the case in projects we have done in the past,” replied Sherrod.
The five-year plan includes a targeted yearly budget for resurfacing projects.
“We budget a million and a half. The original plan was a five-year plan of 1.5 million per year in annual maintenance for the streets,” said Sherrod.
Sherrod further explained that the streets of Huntsville have improved. Huntsville streets were given a PCI (Pavement Condition Index) of 69 in the beginning of the resurfacing project and in four years has risen to a current PCI of 72. The Pavement Condition Index measures the percent of roads that are in fair, good, or excellent condition.
Sherrod was asked by the city council how the if the bids for road repair were separate by road or if the road repair was budgeted by square footage.
“Every year when we go into budget, we have a certain amount of money we put aside for it. We try to estimate the costs of that based on the costs of the projects around us. We get a dollar figure and the number of streets that we will do. When we get to bid-time we may not hit that and will have to adjust to make that work,” Sherrod said.
Other action taken by council included unanimous approval to and employment agreement with Brenda Poe as the new city secretary. The council heard a first reading of a proposal to annex 14.95 acres of land at Weatherford International.
The city council also unanimously approved an additional $455,000 to the contract with Architects Design Group for the design of the new police and fire station. The council then
gave authority to the city manager to apply for over $215,000 in grant money.
The city council declined to take action on a request to initiate a criminal investigation of the transfer station construction project.
The Huntsville City Council recognized the daughter of councilmember Joseph Emmett, D’Anne Emmett Spence of Huntsville, Texas, as she was promoted to the rank of Colonel in the United States Air Force. Colonel Emmett was invited to be the guest Congressman Kevin Brady (R-TX-08) at the State Of The Union Address.
The next scheduled meeting of the Huntsville City Council is set for Feb. 19 at city hall.