Coos County Road Master responds to citizen concerns about the Coquille Tribal Roads Proposal
Sorry I have not got back to you yet. Had another email this week that Commissioner Cribbins answered that is pretty much right on. Here is her answer:
“Native American tribes receive road funding from the Bureau of Indian Affairs for roads that are part of the Tribal Transportation Roadway inventory. These funds can be used for any roads that are relied on by Tribal members to get to and from work or school. The Tribe has identified sections of road that Tribal members use frequently based on the addresses of their Tribal members. This identification simply allows the County to have access to a different funding stream that we would normally not be able to access. The intent of this MOU is to give additional funding to the County for improving”
In the MOU it states “ Allowing the Tribe to include these roads on the TTP Inventory simply allows the Tribe the opportunity to provide potential funding to future roadway improvement projects. In no way does this action render the County less responsible for the roads, or in any way impact roadway ownership or jurisdiction”.
At the Road Department we can only apply for federal funds (Transportation Enhancement, Surface Transportation Program, State Transportation Investment Program, etc) for our Major Collectors only. In most applications for funding the projects must also be listed in our TSP (Transportation System Plan).
By letting the Tribe list roads that include Major Collectors, Minor Collectors, and Local Roads it gives the County another possible funding source for roads that are not Major Collectors.
It is not a conflict of interest, the roads are still ours, but if someone else wants to spend money (our tax dollars) to make improvements to our roadways I thought that would be a good thing.
John J. Rowe, Roadmaster
1281 West Central Coquille, Oregon 97423
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