Pothole Patrol: Plan to fix Metro Detroit roads

Debate continues on how to fix pockmarked roads

Scillian, Spencer, Gaidica, Smilovitz.
Scillian, Spencer, Gaidica, Smilovitz.

DETROIT – Metro Detroit roads have been ravaged by the harsh winter weather, but pothole season is just beginning.

The legislation knows they've got to do something, and they need to do it quickly. The question for fixing these pockmarked roads is where do they get the money, and how much can they get?

Dangerous, destroyed roads are popping up all over the state as the snow clears and the conditions of the roads is more clear.

"I've never seen anything like it," said James Reading.

For 18 years, Reading has run Weldcraft, an aluminum wheel repair shop in Livonia. While his main business is making custom extended hubs for racecars, he takes in a few bent rims per day. Now he has more work than he can deal with.

"For the past couple of weeks I'm probably averaging about 50-60 wheels per day," Reading said.

Drivers are feeling the pain of how expensive the business is. Michigan house democrats say the governor and republicans are preventing spending more on the broken roads.
"There are ways to do this the right way and there are ways to do it quickly," said State Representative Vicki Barnett. "And right now, I don't want to have a debate that's going to take us another year so that Grand River doesn't even get patches on it's potholes."

Republican senator Mike Kowall agrees and says that there is money, that is part of a surplus, that is coming soon.

"100 million being proposed by the senate," Kowall said. "There's 215 million, I believe, being proposed by the house, so that money will be ready to go probably by the end of the month so we can get right on top of this at the beginning of the construction season."