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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - A report was released Monday listing hazardous roads here in Michigan: 10 of them are in the Grand Rapids area.
The report is used to figure out which roads needs to be made safer. But Tuesday, 24 Hour News 8 learned the areas in need of work may not get fixed.
The issue is money. Unless the state finds a new way to fund roads, it will be $1.5 billion in debt by 2014, leaving no money for improvements.
"It's scary," said Saint Mary's Hospital nurse Priya Kaur. "I think there is always ways to get money to fix roads. I think roads should be the biggest concern."
Kaur knows how important having safe roads are. She sees the devastating effects of dangerous stretches of road and ramps firsthand.
"We don't want deaths coming in or accidents coming into the hospital," she said.
Often, crashes are caused by drivers not paying attention, but that doesn't mean road improvements can't help.
That's why the state made a list of where the most dangerous accidents happened over the the past five years and identified what improvements can be made.
== Read: Michigan 2012 Transparency Report (pdf) ==
John Richard of the Michigan Department of Transportation is concerned there won't be enough money to make those improvements. He said any work not already budgeted for 2013 won't happen.
"These changes will take hundreds of millions of dollars," Richard said. "And we simply don't have that money to make huge changes like that."
Richard told 24 Hour News 8 which of the 10 areas in the Grand Rapids area have funding for repair in 2013:
- Southbound U.S. 131 to 68th Street - FUNDED
- Southbound U.S. 131 to 44th Street- FIXED
- Northbound U.S. 131 to Burton Street - NOT FUNDED
- Alpine Avenue between Coventry Drive and Alpine Church Street - NOT FUNDED
- East Beltline between Fulton Street and just north of I-96 - FUNDED
- Northbound U.S. 131 between Hall and Franklin streets - NOT FUNDED
- 28th Street between Buchanan and Division avenue - FIXED
- Northbound U.S. 131 from a quarter-mile south of I-196 and I-196 - NOT FUNDED
- Wilson Avenue at O'Brien Road SW - FUNDED
- Southbound U.S. 131 at the Wealthy Street on-ramp - NOT FUNDED
The problem with paying for all the projects is the way roads are funded. Right now, for every gallon of gas sold, 18 cents goes to improving the roads. Richard said that since prices went up, drivers have been buying less gas.
"People use less gas, people have more efficient cars, we get less money," he explained.
Legislators are now trying to find a new way to fund roads.
"The roads will suffer," Richard said, if more revenue doesn't start coming in.
"5 Percent Report" Requirement 2012 via USDOT
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