By: James Gherardi
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Nov. 21, 2014) - A City County Council member is claiming that thousands of potholes have gone unaddressed, left to grow worse, all for political gain.
Potholes throughout Indianapolis will be repaired in 2015, even though the $24 million in funding to make the improvements is available now.
Zach Adamson, a democratic councilman said it’s the city’s Republican Mayor that wanted to wait.
“They’re just now getting around to starting the list and that’s the frustrating part,” he said.
The money was approved for use in June. The first repair project though was completed in October.
“The Mayor, not knowing whether or not if he was going to run for office again would liked to have used these infrastructure dollars during an election year, which is exactly how it’s turning out. The $24 million, the majority of that will not be spent in 2014, it’ll be spent in 2015,” said Adamson.
Since the city secured the funds in June, the Indianapolis Department of Public Works (DPW) has repaired 7 of its 129 priority projects, six of 74 lane miles and a few hundred potholes out of a few thousand.
“There was a delay within the administration to allocate those funds to the actual job of filling those potholes,” said Adamson.
“We initiated those conversations going back to March. The city county council put it off for a long time,” said Stephanie Wilson, Indy DPW Spokesperson.
Wilson said City County Council secured the funding too late.
“We were three months into the construction season. We have a lengthy, competitive bid process that’s set for us by the law and that can take four to six months,” she said.
Fast forward from June to October, contracts were awarded and work to patch potholes was just beginning. So too however, was the snow. Construction season is already over and all work to repair potholes has been brought to a halt.
“I hit a pothole and my wheel cracked in two pieces,” said Omar Lopez.
Lopez’ pothole problems are like thousands of others in Indy.
“I spent almost $600 and I sent the bills to the city but they didn’t respond back to me,” he said.
If you had an accident that was caused by a city pothole, to report a pothole call the Mayor’ Action Center at 317-327-4MAC or use the RequestIndy tool.