Rep. Glenn: Give local communities more flexibility with road and bridge projects

Categories: Annette Glenn News,News

State Rep. Annette Glenn today introduced legislation giving local governments more flexibility when it comes to funding road repairs – including a measure that could assist bridge repairs and development in Bay and Midland counties.

Glenn’s measure is part of a broad, ongoing commitment to help rebuild Michigan’s infrastructure. This particular bipartisan package focuses on better use of existing road repair resources and giving communities better opportunities to work on local roads connecting driveways to highways.

“Michigan already is spending more money than ever on road and bridge repairs. We owe it to drivers and taxpayers to use those resources as wisely as possible to deliver the best possible results,” said Glenn, of Midland. “A big part of that equation is finding more effective ways to help communities improve the roads and bridges our families and friends travel every day.”

The bipartisan proposals were created after a series of town halls throughout the state hosted by state Rep. Jack O’Malley, chair of the House Transportation Committee, on the issue of roads in Michigan. Glenn co-hosted such an event in Midland County in June. Residents, local officials and construction representatives have all offered their thoughts on how roads can be built better and smarter, and the input was instrumental in pursuing meaningful reform.

Glenn’s measure would allow for the transfer and sharing of local bridge design, construction and operation with the Michigan Department of Transportation. The measure also would ensure proper long-term financial planning before road agencies accept more responsibility for maintaining roads and bridges.

“Sharing knowledge and resources between state and local officials is a great way to save money and make sure projects are done efficiently,” Glenn said. “Infrastructure management should be a team effort. Collaboration helps ensure projects are done right with proper research and development.”

Glenn’s measure – House Bill 4973 – has been referred to the House Transportation Committee for further consideration.

The legislation will be considered separately from the state budget.