AIKEN COUNTY, S.C. (WJBF) – In just 3 months, the South Carolina Department of Transportation has generated $4.8 million dollars in revenue from the Gas Tax.
“Well they raised the taxes, but I’m really not seeing where the money is going, because I see no work getting done on the roads.” City of Aiken employee Sean Howell told WJBF NewsChannel 6.
100 miles of neglected South Carolina roads and bridges are getting a face-lift each year, thanks to the steady stream of revenue generated by the states newest tax.
“You don’t mind paying the extra gas tax?” Asked NewsChannel 6’s Stefany Bornman.
“Well if the extra Gas Tax, 2 cent, hey the bridge is worth it.” Bobby Johnson, a City of Aiken employee, said.
“If we have to pay taxes to drive on the roads, they should at least be driveable,” said Howell.
45 of those roads are right here in the C.S.R.A., topping S.C.D.O.T.’s 10 Year Project Plan.
The new gas tax, which will hike up the price 12 cents in 6 years, is going straight to upgrading rural roads.
“The thing, I think is most important to get fixed is the roads, because if the roads aren’t fixed and the taxes are steady-going up, but the roads aren’t fixed, okay when you ride by all the sudden there’s a pothole.” Howell told WJBF NewsChannel 6. “Now you have to be replacing tires along with paying taxes for driving on these roads.”
Cooks Pond Road is a cut through to U.S. Highway 278. S.C.D.O.T. will be updating the dirt road to make it safer all the way to the Barnwell County line.
The Fairfield Street bridge is also on S.C.D.O.T.’s radar. The plan is to make the structure sound enough to eliminated a weight limit. However, a construction start date hasn’t been set, and it just can’t seem to get done fast enough.
“One of the project is this bridge, do you think they need to get on this?” Asked NewsChannel 6’s Stefany Bornman.
“Yes they do,” said City of Aiken employee James Braxton.
“Why?” Asked NewsChannel 6’s Stefany Bornman.
“Because it’s creating problems on Park Avenue and we need to get that done as soon as possible.” Braxton said.
According to S.C.D.O.T. 42,000 miles of state roads need to be resurfaced or repaired. They plan to work on 100 miles of roadway per year.
To read the complete list of roads improvement projects, construction start dates and upgrades please click here.