Rough Road tour offers state lawmakers a look at road conditions in our area

By Brian Will, WSAW           

MARATHON COUNTY, Wis. (WSAW) -- A national study is confirming what many of us think- that Wisconsin's roads are among the worst in the nation. The state ranks third worst according to the Local Government Institute of Wisconsin.

With potholes and other problems plaguing the state's roadways, local leaders put on a tour to showcase some of the worst spots to state lawmakers. It's called the Rough Road tour and it was a chance for local city, county and town officials to explain their need for funding to get roads fixed.

"You can tell just by some of the roads we drove on that a lot of them need to be redone," said Representative John Spiros of the 86th Assembly District.

Now, a plan for fixing the roads-- lawmakers explain their case:

"The Assembly had a plan and we put it out there. The Senate did not go for it and we ended up with a budget but still it is one of those things I continue to fight for," explained Spiros.

"Republicans have been in the majority and we have had two delayed budgets because of the transportation issue. They chose not to do anything either time- they punted. So what we need now is a bipartisan solution," said Representative Katrina Shankland of the 71st District.

The county just hopes the roads will get fixed soon.

"Hopefully when the legislators go back to Madison they realize they can't keep kicking this can down the road. We need to find a solution to the funding. It's just not Marathon County, you heard from other officials today- both local and other counties. They all are in the same boat and we keep kicking this can down the road but we can't do that anymore," said Jim Griesbach, Marathon County Highway Commissioner.