Road conditions were a topic of discussion at the Kemmerer city council meeting on Monday, April 22. Kemmerer resident Kris Thompson addressed the council.
“I’m here to talk about the potholes on the roads, especially Canyon Road,” Thompson said. “I know the sixth-penny would have paid for repairs to that road, and since it didn’t pass, I’m wondering if the city has a Plan B for fixing the roads and what the timeline is on that.”
The sixth penny tax that failed in the November 2018 election would have created an anticipated revenue of $15,302,422. Diamondville street projects totaling $2,153,814 would have been funded, and Kemmerer would have received $3,147,394 for street repair projects.
Kemmerer public works director Chad Nielson thanked Thompson for coming to the meeting to address him and the council in person about this issue.
“We’ve already submitted three street projects for our 2019-2020 budget,” Nielson said. “They are some of the same projects that would have used sixth-penny funds, but unfortunately Canyon Road is not one of those.”
Nielson said that there are not a lot of grant opportunities for infrastructure work to repair roads.
He said the city does not currently have the funds to replace Canyon Road, which would cost $1 million per mile.
“There’s no long-term plan right now,” Nielson said. “We know that in a lot of places, we’re at the point of replace and not repair.”
Nielson said the city would work hard to patch the roads. The city notified citizens that city crews would be “working on Canyon Road (for) the next few weeks.” On Thursday, April 25, Kemmerer notified citizens that "the City has suspended road patching on Canyon Road until Monday, April 29."
“We do the best we can to take care of the streets in Kemmerer,” Mayor Tony Tomassi said. “We understand there’s a problem no matter how fast or slow you drive, and we’re working on a fix.”