RANDOLPH – Barring any major disagreements from council members, 18 roads in the township will receive resurfacing this year, according to Township Manager Stephen Mountain.
Mountain said he plans to bring an ordinance approving the projects to the council at the April 8 meeting after members review his recommendations.
“This is as precise a process as we can make and we’re very confident that the roads we’re recommending are really the roads that should be resurfaced this year,” he said.
Not every road is evaluated each year. Instead, the township goes through the previous year’s 100 roads in the worst shape and looks to see how they've worsened in the prior year.Every three to four years the township conducts a greater evaluation that tries to capture any changes that happen outside of the top 100 that show accelerated deterioration. The next full evaluation will be in 2020.
Last year’s snowy and cold April coupled with a wet winter this year “caused some roads that weren’t in horrible condition to start worsening at a quicker pace” but none required a move from a medium to high priority, Mountain told the council.
A ranking system from one to 100 is used by the town to determine the quality of roads. Currently, the lowest-scored roads are in the 50s but only a few years ago the worst roads were ranked in the 30s.
“I think that signifies that we've been slowly but surely pushing up where the bottom is and getting the roads that we are just missing doing this year to a point where they're not in a position where they're deteriorating but they're just clearly showing wear,” Mountain said.
At Thursday’s meeting, the council also encouraged residents to participate in this year’s Relay for Life – a community-based fundraising event for the American Cancer Society – at Parsippany Hills High School.
The event takes place on May 18 from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. and there will be a DJ, games and other events for participants. Last year, the Morris County Relay for Life raised $88,000 and organizers hope to raise $90,000 this year.
“The greatest thing about the American Cancer Society is that only 7 percent goes to administrative costs, the rest goes to cancer research. And if you’ve been watching the news, cancer research has been going crazy with these great new cures that they’re finding,” said Jim Marcinkiewicz after accepting the council’s proclamation in support of the event.
In a warning to distracted drivers, the council also announced its participation in the national Distracted Driving 2019 Crackdown. Drivers using their phones should expect a ticket this month as township cops focus on handing out distracted driving tickets in the month of April. Officers will allot time between their other duties to target distracted drivers in an effort to curb the behavior.
According to data from 2016, 53 percent of all motor vehicle accidents in New Jersey involved distracted driving, prompting the council to declare its support of the program at Thursday’s meeting.
“Whatever kind of chaos is going on inside your car could result in chaos outside,” said Councilwoman Marie Potter.