County Board Chair Derek King: Townships Need to Step Up To Improve Roads
Funding for Michigan Roads hasn't changed much in nearly 70 years, since Public Act 51 was passed. Calhoun County Board Chairman Derek King was a guest on the 95.3 WBCK Morning Show with Tim Collins, to try and explain how it works, and where it falls short.
King says the state collects gas takes and fees and basically splits the pot three ways, with the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), the state's 83 counties, and villages and municipalities. He said the latter gets the smaller share of that pie, but Public Act 51 provides no funding for townships. The problem is finding enough dollars to maintain the local roads that fall through the cracks. King says the vast majority of townships in Michigan provide funds that counties match to get the job done.
King acknowledges that there is nothing in the law that says townships much provide funding for roads, but he says 1100 of the 1240 townships in Michigan do partner with their counties to maintain roads. But he says a dozen or more of those 140 townships that do nothing are here in Calhoun County. He says the townships that do come up with funding have much better roads. King says some township pass road millages, and some townships have special assessments.