Thanks for your editorial on the deplorable condition of our county roads. It is way past time for something to be done so we can have roads we can be proud of. I agree with you that those roads reflect unfavorably upon us.
Our county roads were much better back in the 80s; I’m not sure what happened in those intervening years but they have gotten steadily worse since. For those who drive those roads on a regular basis, it can be an exercise in dodging large rocks (dug up by the road graders) and potholes from the last rain that the grader didn’t fix. The wear and tear on our vehicles from such rough roads takes an expensive toll, not to mention the unpleasant ride. It is a recurring topic of conversation.
One commissioner had a plan a few years ago to gradually purchase paving equipment so the county could pave some of the rougher stretches of roads at the rate of about a mile per year — not a lot compared to the scores of miles in the county — but at least it would go in the direction of road improvement rather than just the same old perpetual maintenance. What happened to that idea?
I’m not suggesting we should have super highways for county roads; after all, this is "the country." But when surrounding counties have paved county roads and well-maintained, crowned gravel roads with bar ditches to properly deal with rain runoff, I would invite a vigorous discussion among citizens and commissioners to come up with a reasonable "better roads" plan for Mason county. I’m convinced we have the resourcefulness to get it done, but do we have the will?