Macomb County Exec blames lawmakers for state's roads
MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. (WJBK) - It doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize our Michigan roads are filled with about as many craters as the moon.
That's why Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel wasn't pleased when he heard Governor Rick Snyder signed only an extra $175 million in spending for fixing our roads.
"We are making tremendous progress," he said. "Let's look to the positives continue a path to invest in our infrastructure."
Hackel claims the money isn't even close to being enough.
"That is to quiet the crowd, that is hush money - that is all it is, to cover these pot holes because they know it is coming again," he said. "That thaw will happen again and they want to quiet people down."
Hackel points to a 2008 statewide recommendation to the governor that says to keep status quo - basically put a Band-Aid on the problems we would need to invest $1.9 billion annually. In order to make improvements - the state would need $6.1 billion.
"That is less than the do nothing plan in 2008," he said. "It is absolutely incredible where we are at right now, and this impression that we have adequate funding to solve the problem and we do not."
During a recent press conference surrounded by orange barrels - Gov. Rick Snyder conceded more needs to be done to fix our crumbling infrastructure.
The funds in this road bill will be distributed among all 83 Michigan counties and 533 cities and villages based on population.
Hackel says when you do the math, Macomb County will only get $4.5 million to fix their 800 miles of roads and 44 bridges. He said that would only repair one mile.
He said he doesn't blame Michigan's thaw cycle - Hackel blames inept law makers.
"This is the number one crisis we have on our hands," he said. "And it will continue to get worse until the legislature owns responsibility if they don't want to do it, then pass the buck."
As an alternative, Hackel suggests each county keep their money from vehicle registration or money from the gas tax - instead of it all going to Lansing.