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Wisconsin’s roads get a D+ grade

Published: Jan. 24, 2021 at 10:01 PM CST
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) have weighed in on Wisconsin’s infrastructure. The organization’s Wisconsin Section gave the state’s infrastructure a C in it’s Sept. 2020 report card. The state’s roads got a D+.

“Certainly not a grade that we would aspire to,” Wisconsin ASCE member Martin Hanson said.

Infrastructure issues affect everyone. Hanson said not fixing these problems costs the average family $3,300 dollars annually as delays costs money more crashes lead to higher car insurance rates.

“We think that this is a significant drag on the economy. Also infrastructure would create new jobs and opportunities,” he said.

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT) agrees.

State DOT Secretary-Designee Craig Thompson said the state needs to spend more money rebuilding and maintaining its roads.

“After 20 years of neglect the conditions of our roads across the State of Wisconsin is not acceptable,” he said.

State lawmakers did come to a bipartisan agreement to raise vehicle registration fees in the last budget, increasing funding for the first time in a generation.

“There was a little bit over $460 million dollars that was raised in new revenue,” Thompson said. “Every penny of that is going to fix what we have first.”

Hanson said, however, it will cost about $6 billion to solve the state’s infrastructure problems. The goal isn’t to get an A grade.

“We think B is where the good target should be. Sometimes it doesn’t come cost effective to raise that grade all the way to an A,” Hanson said.

In the most recent national report card in 2017, the nation’s roads received a D.

Infrastructure grades are based on eight categories including capacity, safety and funding.

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