More paved roads for county?

Published 1:53 am Saturday, September 17, 2016

Commission chairman proposes starting fund for future paving

Covington County Commission Chairman Bill Godwin is hopeful a resolution that would establish a dirt road paving fund for the county will be approved at the group’s next meeting.

Godwin-BillThe proposed resolution dedicates three sources of revenue to the proposed fund, including:

• Payments from the South Alabama Regional Airport Authority;

• Half of the Alabama Oil and Gas Trust Fund payments;

• Alabama Internet sales tax payments.

The resolution calls for the balance of the funds to be carried forward from fiscal year to fiscal year.

Under the proposal, a unanimous vote of the district commissioners is required to spend money for paving; a unanimous vote of all commission members – including the chairman – is needed to use the funds for any other reason.

Godwin, who will leave office in November, said he believes the policy is needed because the cost of paving is great, the county can’t afford to take the money from its funds for road maintenance.

“You will never get anything done unless there is a dedicated fund for paving dirt roads,” he said.

Godwin said the resolution might be amended to use a portion of the monies for a reserve fund, a request made by commissioners Joe Barton and Kyle Adams.

Godwin said County Engineer Lynn Ralls has identified a dirt road with 60 residents in less than a mile’s distance.

“That will probably be the first one we pave,” Godwin said.