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Tuesday - February 13, 2018 9:00 am

A better way for the state to fund roads

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The answer was swift and short. No. That is the response from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation to the city of La Crosse. Mayor Tim Kabat has proposed that the city of La Crosse repave La Crosse Street, one of the city's worst roads, and then send the bill to the DOT. That won't be happening. In fact, according to the DOT, state statute forbids it. That is because La Crosse Street is also part of Highway 16, a state roadway. While the city can patch up the road, it is the state's job to reconstruct it. But the state doesn't plan to redo La Crosse Street until 2025, seven years from now. Mayor Kabat is right, we can't wait that long to fix that crumbling stretch of road. There is something wrong with the system if a road that threatens to swallow cars doesn't get on the DOT's radar until years after it has already fallen apart. Perhaps a better system would allow Wisconsin cities to decide how state road money should be spent. That would be the local control they often give lip service to. The people who drive our roads everyday should be the ones to determine when a road is no longer drivable. Just add up the miles of roads in La Crosse and every other Wisconsin city and give them each so much per mile to fix them. It wouldn't cost more than we're spending now, but would allow local governments to decide how that money would be spent. That way we, not Madison, would decide when our roads need a facelift.

Scott Robert Shaw

Scott Robert Shaw is the Program Director for both 1410 WIZM and 580 WKTY.   He's currently the morning news anchor on 1410 WIZM, Z93 and 95-7 The Rock.  He joined Mid-West Family Broadcasting as a reporter/anchor in 1989 and served as News Director from 1990-2015.   He's been the winner of several Wisconsin Broadcaster's Association awards for Best Editorial in Wisconsin.  He enjoys traveling, bicycling and cooking.

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