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Logan to continue road care

Resident cites issues for cars, property owners

The Logan Township supervisors seemed disinclined recently to accept a resident’s suggestion to do away with a road-maintenance practice designed to save money.

Tar-and-chipping the roads generates loose stones, which is a problem for “enthusiasts” of cars, motorcycles and even bikes, as well as property owners, said Jeff MacAlarney of Briarcliff Road, which is off Davis Road in the Grandview area.

The stones detach from the tar in which they’re placed or never bond to it, and then ding vehicle paintwork, while also accumulating in ditches and culverts, creating a nuisance, MacAlarney indicated.

They’re especially problematic on Davis, Avalon and Castle Farm roads, which at times are heavily traveled, MacAlarney said.

Better to spend a little more and pave those roads, MacAlarney said.

Soon after an application of chips, there are loose stones, but soon, they “settle down,” especially after sweeping, said supervisors Chairman Jim Patterson.

The tar-and-chipping extends the life of roadways at lower cost than paving, it’s approved by PennDOT and the township can pay for it through its annual liquid fuels tax allocations, Patterson said.

The township could pay for paving by borrowing, MacAlarney said.

The supervisors don’t want to raise taxes, Patterson said.

Tar-and-chipping is a waste of money, MacAlarney said — adding that a member of the township’s road crew agreed with him.

When the township puts the practice off too long, roads develop “spider cracks” in the winter, leading to deterioration,

Patterson said.

“If it was a waste of money, PennDOT wouldn’t allow us (to use it),” Patterson added. “It’s a PennDOT-approved process.”

Moreover, the practice has “improved tremendously” over the last 30 years, and especially the last five or 10, Patterson said.

Formerly, oil-based liquid was used, but now it’s a latex emulsion, he said.

MacAlarney should visit his local lawmakers to argue for an increase in municipal funding for roads if he wants more paving done, Patterson said.

The tar-and-chip process, which PennDOT calls “surface treatment,” extends the life of low-volume roads three to five years, according to a department webpage.

Mirror Staff Writer William Kibler is at 814-949-7038.

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