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Citizen Roads Advisory Commission meets for first time

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Just last night Gov. Nikki Haley delivered her State of the State address.

Among the issues, she said she wouldn't raise the tax on gasoline to fix roads and bridges.

“We proved last year that we can invest in our roads and bridges with the dollars we already have,” Haley said.

Despite the governor’s message, one group says it can't wait for the state to act.

Instead, members say it’s up to the community to determine what Greenville County's needs are on the roads, so they're taking action.

Thursday evening, the Citizen Roads Advisory Commission met at County Square for the first time to get an idea of what Greenville County has to do to fix its roads.

”The message coming out of Columbia consistently is no new taxes for roads and road improvement. So, now the decision is left to the counties,” Commission member Tim Madden said.

“Greenville County is faced with a serious road problem,” Lisa Stevens said.

Stevens chairs the newly formed commission.

“We’re going to have to decide who we want to be in 10 years what do we want the condition of our infrastructure to be,” Stevens said.

From Greer to Fountain Inn to the SCDOT, representatives across Greenville County gave the commission an idea of what they're facing in their areas.

“As you know Woodruff Road is one of the most congested roads in the city of Greenville, and there's a lot of development going on and there's a lot of development yet to happen there,” City Engineer Dwayne Cooper said.

Keith Brockington with the Greenville Pickens Area Transportation Study pointed out 56 roads need to be addressed but are not expected to be funded by 2035. GPATS plans out federally funded transportation improvements.

“To sum it all up we don't have a whole lot of money and we have a whole lot of need,” Brockington said.

“That's an eye opener when you look at that list and see that we have money in the pipeline, and engineering for certain projects and they have a vision plan out for 2035, and it's stuff that if you were driving down the road you would think needs to be done today,” Stevens said.

Stevens says the commission can't figure out the solutions alone.

“People need to show up at these meetings. If they don't come tell us what they're thinking, we're going to assume they have no opinion,” Stevens said.

The commission hopes by next week to have set the dates and locations for seven public input meetings around Greenville County.

That’s when the community will get the chance to tell the commission what they think needs to be fixed in their area.

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