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Central One

Roadwork facing oil cost woes

Towns set priorities while other places revert to dirt

May 12, 2011
The state is kicking more funds into local road maintenance this year, but with the costs of oil and asphalt rising, how far that will go remains in flux.

That's one major reason why area towns have been investigating various approaches to keeping the roads intact.

"We need wiggle room for what could be a crazy escalation of liquid asphalt and fuel costs," said Charlton Highway Superintendent Gerry Foskett.

The state is sending Charlton $649,951 in Chapter 90 highway funds this year, which Foskett hopes to largely use on five key roads: Flint (overlay paving), H. Putnam (full reclamation, Route 20 to Stafford Street), Stafford (paving, Mass. Pike bridge to Brookfield Road), Gould (paving), and Hill (partial overlay and paving). Whatever's left will go into the maintenance program of crack-filling and chip-sealing.

He noted the plan hasn't yet gone to the selectmen, but they usually approve his recommendations.

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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