COFFEEVILLE – Yalobusha supervisors have been working on a four-year plan to divide approximately $1,670,000 in state aid funds for maintenance and repair of roads and bridges in the county.
The money is appropriated through the Office of State Aid Road Construction, an office of the Mississippi Department of Transportation. State-aid assists Mississippi’s 82 counties in the construction and maintenance of secondary, non-state owned roads and bridges.
First on the list to receive a portion of the money will be Beat Five Supervisor Frank “Bubba” Tillman who will repair a currently-closed bridge on County Road 2. The estimated cost for this bridge replacement is $350,000.
“I sure want to get my bridge started, if there is any way possible,” Tillman told supervisors at a January 25 recessed meeting.
“I hate to use that much money on it, but we have to have a bridge over there,” Tillman said, defending the expenditure which will eat up approximately 21 percent of the county’s state aid money during this four-year term which began in January.
“It is open now, right?” Beat Three Supervisor M.H. “Butch Surrete asked about the current status of the bridge.
“No, it is not open, it is closed,” Tillman said. “It is barricaded off,” the supervisor continued. Tillman added that school buses and the mail route are currently diverted because of the closure.
“Everybody has gone around long enough that they are about ready to get a bridge across there now,” Tillman said.
Tillman’s project was approved, after a unanimous vote to program state aid money on County Road 2, which would give Willis Engineering the okay to begin work.
A second vote quickly followed, a motion to seal 13 miles on County Road 211 in Supervisor George Suggs’ beat.
The price tag for reseal a mile of state-aid road is approximately $50,000 in Yalobusha County. Unlike several neighboring counties, Yalobusha supervisors perform the reseal work using county crews, saving an estimated $10,000 to $15,000 a mile according to Doc Gabbert, who works with the county’s engineering firm, Willis Engineering.
The vote to reseal the 13 miles on County Road 211 was mundane, compared to the bridge vote, following a recommendation by State Aid Engineer Brooks Miller.
Suggs’ reseal project will consume another estimated $650,000, or 40 percent of the county’s state-aid money. The remainder of the money will likely be earmarked during a work-session with Gabbert. This meeting date has not been scheduled. During this meeting, the remaining state-aid money, an estimated $670,000, will be divvied up by supervisors to reseal an approximate 13 miles scattered across the county.