Onondaga County will be helping out some local governments, including the city of Syracuse, re-pave roads ravaged by a bad winter.
It wasn’t as much as originally offered by Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney, but Onondaga County lawmakers did agree yesterday to foot the bill for paving two major roads in the city of Syracuse.
Legislature Chairman Ryan McMahon says the county will spend a half a million dollars to re-pave Adams and Harrison Streets.
“Which are obviously two vital streets for county government. We have many of our county assets there. Our OnCenter is there. Route 81 comes on and off there every day, so these are two critically important streets,” said McMahon.
The idea of paving streets downtown cropped up after Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner testified in March in Washington that the city can’t afford to fix its crumbling infrastructure, and Mahoney offered to use some surplus cash from the county’s budget to help patch things up.
Some suburban lawmakers opposed the idea, suggesting county dollars shouldn’t be used to pay bills for local municipalities. Included in spending is also a $800,000 to re-pave roads in eight towns, as well as $200,000 for other towns that want to apply for the cash.
McMahon says he can’t promise this expenditure will happen every year.
“You can’t say we’re going to do some extra if you don’t know if you have the money, or if you have the political will to do it. So this is a one shot at this point. We’ll see how we end things focally next year to see if there is any debate about this type of program going forward again,” said McMahon.