Richland County leaders present progress report on Penny Tax projects

Published: Dec. 15, 2015 at 2:28 PM EST
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HOPKINS, SC (WIS) - County officials updated residents Monday night about infrastructure projects going on throughout Richland County as part of the Richland Penny program.

Residents approved a penny tax referendum in 2012 in order to fund new roads projects and to expand COMET, the county's bus transit system.

County officials have spent $19 million on expanding COMET routes and $13 million on road expansion projects and paving dirt roads.

Residents who attended the meeting said more needs to be done about potholes, especially in rural communities.

"If you are paying taxes and you are paying for certain things that a proportion of your taxes goes toward road maintenance," Lower Richland resident Barbara Simons said. "It's grand that other people have access to that. I think more people should have that same access as well."

Hopkins resident Odell Middleton said some potholes are so problematic, he's seen vehicles swerve into oncoming traffic.

"Oh yeah, a lot of potholes," Middleton said. "Like one lady said we have to duck around from messing up the car because you come upon it so fast, that it throws you into the lane of oncoming traffic."

County officials say they have paved more than seven of 236 miles of dirt roads throughout the county.

They've also finalized resurfacing contracts for an additional 11 miles to be done this spring.

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