UNION COUNTY — An extra $2.5 million in state funding will help Union County address approximately 25 percent of its road repair needs according to the chairman of the Union County Transportation Committee.
SC Senate District 14 Sen. Harvey Peeler, the senior member of the Union County Legislative Delegation, announced Tuesday that an extra $2.5 million in state funding is coming to Union County this year to fix local roads.
In a press release announcing the allocation, Peeler stated that early this month the SC General Assembly approved a supplemental appropriations bill which puts an extra $216 million in the county transportation committee funds. Peeler said that this money is to be used to fill pot holes, resurface and improve state-owned roads. He said that the Union County Transportation Committee will be responsible for deciding which projects will be funded.
Peeler pointed out that, typically, Union County’s portion of this gas-tax money is around $822,000.
“With this additional money I hope we will soon be seeing pot holes filled and secondary roads resurfaced,” Peeler said. “This was my number one priority in the budget, and I look forward to seeing DOT at work soon. I remain hopeful the legislature will come up with a statewide roads plan, but at least for Union County, this is a good start.”
County Transportation Committee funds are derived from 2.66 cents of the gasoline tax. The money is distributed to the 46 counties based on a formula of square miles, population and rural roads.
Union County Transportation Committee Chairman Don Shetley thanked the delegation for helping the county get the additional funding which he said is much needed.
“That’s almost three times what we normally get,” Shetley said Wednesday morning. “This can help us address approximately 25 percent of our needs. We want to thank the delegation for their support.”
Shetley said that his committee works primarily with local office of the SC Department of Transportation, Union County, the City of Union, and the towns of Carlisle, Jonesville, and Lockhart. He said that during each fiscal year each group submits their requests for funding which the committee then reviews and selects which projects are to be funded.
Even with the additional funding, Shetley said the committee will follow this same procedure. Shetley said he expects the committee to begin the process of allocating the additional funds within the next 30 days. He stressed that the committee will not allocate all the funds immediately, but will do so across the course of the 2015-2016 fiscal year.
Projects In Progress
Shetley said that that there are currently 10 road and sidewalk repair projects under way in the county that are at least partly funded with allocations from his committee. A total of $2,359,174.32 has been allocated to those projects of which $25,899.06 had been spent as of the end of May.
Those projects include:
• Three projects budgeted at $1,085,858.74, $10,341.51, and $62,049.07, respectively, involving the patching and resurfacing of sections of SC 215.
Local Paving Projects
•Union County — Widening, installing curb and gutter, repaving and improving storm drainage on 2nd Avenue and 3rd Street. These are the Phase II of a Community Development Block Grant project ($146,475).
• Union County — Resurfacing several alleys and portions of N. First Street and Longview Drive ($68,550).
• Catawba Council of Governments/Union County — Resurfacing Franklin Street and Norris Street in the Town of Jonesville ($65,400).
• Union County — Extending Midway Drive from approximately 2,900 feet north of SC 49 to Lukesville Road ($500,000).
• City of Union — Improving sidewalks on sections of the following streets: S-504, US 176, S-50, SC 49, S-202, S-16, O’Shields Street and Lybrand Street ($20,000).
• Union County — Resurfacing approximately 22 roads in the county ($400,000).
• Dedication at the intersection of US 176 and New Hope Church Road of the “Joan Burgess Intersection” ($500).