Saturday, February 27, 2021

More Oxford Roads Means More Money Needed for Street Department

By Alyssa Schnugg
News Editor

Using the current style of repaving roads in the city of Oxford, with the amount funding allotted each year for repaving, City Engineer Reanna Mayoral said it would take 60 years to repave every road within the city limits.

On Wednesday, Mayoral presented the fiscal year 2020 budget for the Engineer Department to the Oxford Board of Aldermen during a budget review meeting.

For the last several years, $650,000 has been allotted for repaving roads. This year, Mayoral is asking for $800,000 since the city annexed 11-square miles of Lafayette County roads in October 2018 that added 75 streets to the city’s roadways.

The department has a list of the streets identified as most in need of paving based on their current conditions. There are about 23 streets on the list.

“At the funding rate of $650,000, it will take six years to pave the streets on the list,” she said.

However, Mayoral said if the city used different pavement management systems other than traditional asphalt-only, the city could save money and be able to care for more roads.

For example, Anchorage Road would cost $194,329 to repave using the traditional mill and asphalt overlay.

If the city used micro-sealing or a slurry seal, it would cost $70,459.

Micro-sealing consists of a mixture of water, asphalt emulsion, aggregate (very small crushed rock), and chemical additives to an existing asphalt pavement surface.

Mayoral told the board she plans on setting up a future meeting with the Board to more fully explain different options for pavement management.

The Mayor and Board of Aldermen will be meeting with department heads over the next two weeks to review each budget before approving the final overall budget in September.

The total budget for the Engineering Department, which includes the Street Department is $4,738,731. Other budgets presented Wednesday:

  • Developmental Services/Administration at $452,945
  • Planning Department at $498,293
  • Building Department at $484,875
  • Historic Properties Commission at $190,000
  • Oxford Conference Center at $1,538,764
  • Yoknapatawpha Arts Center at $425,844
  • Visit Oxford at $985,081