Montgomery city councilman apologizes to constituents over street paving plan

Published: Aug. 21, 2013 at 10:23 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 31, 2013 at 10:23 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn
Councilman Richard Bollinger address constituents during Tuesday's city council meeting.
Councilman Richard Bollinger address constituents during Tuesday's city council meeting.

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Sixty miles of Montgomery streets will soon get some much needed improvements. Five million dollars of the city's new $25-million dollar line of credit is earmarked for street paving.  But not all city council members are happy with their district's share of the pie.

"I wanted to say one thing. I'll watch and I won't let this happen to the residents out there in my district again," said Bollinger during the last moments of Tuesday's city council meeting.

"I wanted to make sure my constituents knew that I wouldn't spend their money again until I made sure that money was being spent wisely and most of it being spent in their district as well," Bollinger said the next day.

Bollinger says his district is only getting $150,000 dollars of the earmarked street paving money.

Some districts are getting as much as $2-million.

He claims the criteria used to judge good streets against poor ones was determined five years ago and since then his streets have drastically changed.

"The spidering and pulling apart. There's grass growing through some of the asphalt."

But council President Charles Jinright says the roads were recently re-evaluated.

"Three months ago."

But because the city fell behind on street paving due to insufficient funding, the streets that were poor years ago are even worse now--most of them in the center of the city.

And that's where Jinright says the attention is focused.

"This way we're gonna do part of the catch up. We're still not gonna catch up to where we need to go. But we'll be way down the road compared to where we were."

"I think as we move forward I'll press for a little bit more communication and more equity among the different areas," adds Bollinger.

Councilmen Arch Lee and Tracy Larkin are getting the majority of the repaving money.

In fact, they'll receive roughly $3-million of the $5-million dollars.

But Jinright says if the city can knock out a big chunk of the urgent projects, they can start on other roads that aren't quite as severe which could be in Councilman Bollinger's district.

Copyright 2013  WSFA 12 News.  All rights reserved.