The Press Newspaper
The Wood County commissioners will designate the county’s share of casino tax revenue this year for bridge projects.
The commissioners said last week they’ve approached Ray Huber, county engineer, about preparing a top 10 list of bridges in need of replacement as identified in the engineer’s annual bridge inspection report.
The 10 bridges would be in addition to bridge projects Huber’s office has slated for 2014.
The commissioners plan to use the casino revenue to fund design and engineering costs for the 10 spans, using area engineering firms beginning next year.
With preliminary design work complete, the 10 projects will be ready for contract bidding and construction which would be funded by motor vehicle gas tax revenues, grants and the county’s share of casino tax revenues.
The commissioners will let Huber’s office determine which bridges are to be replaced, said Andrew Kalmar, county administrator.
The commissioners in January estimated the county will receive about $750,000 in casino taxes this year, Kalmar said, but that appears to be too conservative. In April, the county received $356,441 and in July the county’s share was $400,109.
“We’re doing better than expected,” he said.
The county began receiving quarterly casino tax payments in 2012.
The engineer’s office is responsible for maintaining 443 bridges, which by state definition, is a span of 10 feet or more.
There are also about 2,500 culverts in the county but culverts 36 inches or less in diameter under township roads are the responsibility of township trustees.
In 2011, Huber’s office completed three bridge projects. A replacement of a Dairy View Road bridge cost $183,000 and replacing superstructures on bridges on Ash Road and East Broadway cost $47,000 and $68,000 respectively.
There were no bridge projects completed in the county last year, according to the engineer’s website, but sections of four roads, were improved, including Huffman Road at a cost of $709,079; Fostoria Road ($189,899); Kellogg Road ($350,169); Tracy Road ($175,500), and Pelton Road ($85,031).