To the editor:
I have been a long time resident of Marion County; granted, I left for a while, but now I’m back.
I grew up driving country roads and the county roads here in Marion County, and I see several what used to be main country roads that were very good roads now in very poor condition. They remind me of minimum maintenance roads. They’re roads I don’t want to travel down even in a truck, and definitely do not want to in a car in fear that the car would become damaged.
I understand that there was quite the controversy last year about county roads and there is a path forward with getting them back to the condition they once were. I have seen and heard many complain about the country roads and the grader person/persons lack of grading abilities that make me wonder is the county trying to train people on the grader?
I have kept track of the progress that the county has mentioned and yes, work is getting done, but at what cost?
I have seen patchwork repairs made on county roads with asphalt then chip-sealed afterward; however, the same road six months later is back to the shape it was before repairs were made. Another county road, I saw gravel patchwork being done instead of asphalt, and I am surprised farmers still use that road to travel with their tractors. I wouldn’t, in fear that it would tear up my machinery.
Country roads are the worst I have seen in 35 years, with mainly-traveled roads at a point that most vehicles I see travel those roads less than 30 mph just to make it down the road.
I have traveled many county roads in Kansas and other states and by far Marion county and country roads are the worst I have seen. The county used to have pride in the work they did. Now all I see in the work they do is that it needs to be done, but it doesn’t seem like they are taking pride in the work they do.
I have also seen them do work that wasn’t supposed to be done or even in the wrong location. It just surprises me that the county road and bridge department has had to go into crisis mode instead of being proactive in the maintenance of roads.
If the county wants to maintain the roads back to the good condition that the roads once were, then the people doing the work and their supervision or management must take pride in their work. It’s not just a paycheck. They are the faces of the county, and if they don’t have pride in their work and their work is sloppy, then they should be ashamed of that work.