If the state won’t, then the county must
The county’s bridge problem, like much of the state’s, is not going to be adequately addressed by the state. So the Board of Supervisors is doing the only thing it can — borrow money to fix the worst of them.
The board this week approved a $5 million bond for bridge repairs. Back in January, supervisors made it clear that more funding was needed for road and bridge work.
Lincoln County is in the Top 5 among counties in the number of roads and bridges to maintain, but is only in the mid-20s in assessed values. That means the county has more roads and bridges and fewer tax dollars to maintain them compared to some counties.
State lawmakers refused to address the problem with any sort of meaningful funding change (or a fuel tax increase), so that left the burden on counties — and local taxpayers.
The bridges that will be repaired are those that are in danger of being closed due to safety concerns. We are grateful those problems will be addressed, but it is unfortunate the state chose not to invest more in infrastructure.