After sitting idle for a number of years since the township’s seven-man paving crew was disbanded due to budget cuts, Brick’s road milling machine fell into disrepair. This week, the township council unanimously voted to solicit bids to fix the machine so a more streamlined utility crew within the Public Works Department can tackle larger road repair projects in town.
“They’re doing patches and pot holes,” Mayor John Ducey said of the utility crew’s current assignments, but bringing the milling machine will allow for the township to complete larger road repairs in-house rather than hiring contractors. The township also has a patch machine, which can repair 10-foot by 20-foot sections of roadway all at once.
“In order to do bigger jobs, you have to mill [the road] first,” Ducey said.
“It’s a great way to use our manpower at a cost savings,” said Council President Paul Mummolo.
Even though the milling machine will likely be fixed in relatively short order after a contract is awarded, it probably will not be used until next spring since most paving projects cannot be completed during the winter due to a lack of materials. The utility crew will work on small projects and repairs rather than large-scale road improvement projects.
“Even when we had a full time paving crew of seven guys, they only did about three miles of road a year,” said Ducey. “When it’s a smaller job and a straight road, they’ll be able to do it.”