Recently, the Town of Colchester received a citizen inquiry regarding the status of the Mill Pond Road bridge work.
Here is a bit of background on the topic.
For the past several years, the Town—as authorized by the voters—has been funding a reserve fund for the bridge project. Specifically, voters are asked to authorized a specific dollar amount to be deposited into the bridge reserve fund each year for a set period of years. Once approved, this amount is incorporated into the Town’s annual budget, and when taxes are collected, that approved amount of money is deposited into the bridge reserve fund.
The overall funding of the Mill Pond Road bridge relies primarily on state and federal funding. These monies are accessed through the Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) within a program known as the Town Highway Bridge Program. Here, VTrans manages the overall project and provides 90 percent of the necessary funding from state and federal sources; the remaining 10 percent must be paid by the Town. The Bridge Reserve Fund is used to raise this amount.
To date, VTrans has completed many of the necessary environmental studies as well as much of the permitting and preliminary engineering for the project. While additional work is needed in right-of-way acquisition and final design, VTrans currently plans to proceed to construction in the 2014—2015 time frame. The estimated total cost of this project is $1.89 million. The Town’s 10 percent share of the project translates to approximately $189,000 … and the current balance in the bridge reserve fund is $189,000. Therefore, the Town does not anticipate the need to continue funding this reserve fund.
For more information, please feel free to contact the Town of Colchester at (802) 264-5500 or the Vermont Agency of Transportation at (802) 828-2657.
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