Transportation Coalition official in area discussing IMPROVE Act impact on Wash. Co.

JONESBOROUGH, TN (WJHL) – A representative from the Transportation Coalition of Tennessee was in Northeast Tennessee again Thursday, this time addressing the impact of Governor Bill Haslam’s IMPROVE Act on Washington County.

Casin Swann is one of many representatives the coalition has sent to all 95 counties in Tennessee to discuss the legislation and make people aware of its details.

He spoke to the media about the tax cuts that are a part of the IMPROVE Act and the effects the increased gas tax will have on Washington County roads and bridges.

The county is set to receive $94,520,644 in 18 different projects over the next 15 years.

Swann was confident about the benefits people from Washington County will feel because of this legislation.

“The IMPROVE Act is a win for all Tennesseans and it’s something that we’re not going, as a Tennessean, we’re not going to shoulder on our backs solely,” Swann said. “It’s a win for everyone.”

None of these projects are scheduled on the Tennessee Department of Transportation’s 3-year priority list but some of them are expected to begin as early as 2021.

Washington County Highway Superintendent John Deakins said there are multiple projects in Washington County that could begin within that timeframe.

“I think the fourth year of this act Washington County will start seeing a lot of TDOT projects,” John Deakins.

A redesign of Exit 17 on I-26 is one project that is in the planning stages and is expected to be started in the next 4 years.

Other projects expected in the next 15 years include work on:

  • New Victory Rd. bridge over Little Limestone Creek
  • New St. bridge over Brush Creek
  • Milligan Hwy. bridge over CSX railroad
  • Garland Rd. bridge over Limestone Creek
  • Tommy Campbell Rd. bridge over Little Cherokee Creek
  • Magnolia Ext. bridge over CSX railroad
  • Bowmantown Rd. bridge over Carson Creek
  • Jarrett Rd. bridge over Onion Creek
  • Gray Station Rd. bridge over Ford Creek
  • Glendale Rd. bridge over creek
  • Mill St. bridge over Little Limestone Creek
  • Little Cassi Creek Rd. bridge over Cassi Creek
  • Austin Springs Rd. bridge over Watauga River
  • State Route 93 (Sullivan Gardens Parkway) from north of Davis Road to North of Fire Hall Road
  • Knob Creek Rd. from State Route 354 to Mizpah Hills Dr.
  • State Bridges US-11E/321 W. Market St. bridge over CSX railroad
  • State Bridges State Route 353 bridge over Little Limestone Creek

Washington County will also be included in two projects bordering Sullivan County:

  • Fort Henry Dr. from State Route 75 to I-81
  • Sullivan Gardens Parkway from Morgan Lane to south of Baileyton Road

Swann emphasized that the IMPROVE Act included the largest tax cuts in Tennessee state history while providing additional funding for the improvement of transportation through the gas tax.

“I think there’s a lot of great things from the tax side and in turn we’ve kind of rebalanced, recalibrated our tax structure to where we now have an ability to not overtax people but put the money where it needed to go,” Swann said.

Copyright 2017 WJHL. All Rights Reserved.

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