Summit County Council is backing the county engineer’s effort to oppose legislation that would increase the weight limit of trucks on county roads.
Ohio House Bill 35 and Ohio House Bill 59 would shift Commercial Activity Tax revenue and also increases the maximum weight limit from 80,000 to 90,000 pounds on roadways.
If passed, the measure could mean any additional costs needed to fix the road thanks to damage from the heavier weights would fall on local taxpayers.
Council members passed a resolution opposing the change.
“Road trips begin on a local road so you are either on a township road, a county road or a municipal road to get to the turnpike or the interstate, so our roads are definitely going to be affected by an increase,” said Heidi Swindell of the Summit County Engineer’s office. “We are absolutely worried about our roads and bridges, their deterioration and the safety of the roadways because a larger truck is going to cause more damage if they get into an accident.”
Swindell said the County Engineers Association of Ohio (CEAO) has been a great resource in getting this information out to all the county engineers in the state.
She said the County Commissioners Association of Ohio (CCAO) is also against the measure.
Earlier this month, a representative of the Coalition Against Bigger Trucks (CABT), Brian Shuford, spoke to council members saying the organization also is opposed to the weight limit change. He said the added weight creates more danger on the roads because they require a greater stopping distance and would increase the chance of having more rollover crashes.
Swindell said the truck weight limit has been removed from the Senate version, but the House is trying to reinsert it back into the bill.
County Council also approved Summit County entering a contract with the city of Akron to provide programs to help the homeless and those close to being homeless. The county’s portion of the contract, $175,000, comes from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) fund. The city of Akron will head the program. The county’s additional funds will create a fourth funding source for homeless prevention services, which will work with a grand total of about $800,000.
Marilyn Miller can be reached at 330-996-3098 or firstname.lastname@example.org.