Public Works Department to give details Tuesday on Port Arthur street repairs

Published 12:01 am Tuesday, October 26, 2021

PORT ARTHUR — The Public Works Department on Tuesday is scheduled to give a detailed report on street repairs at the Port Arthur City Council meeting.

Councilman Thomas Kinlaw had put the request on the Oct. 12 agenda, but it was moved due to miscommunication.

City Manager Ron Burton said Kinlaw met with the public works director the prior day; however, the councilman said the meeting did not happen.

“I put this on the agenda right after the last meeting that I wanted to get a detailed account,” Kinlaw said at the time. “We spent a lot of money — $90,000 — to have a truck go around and find out which streets (needed repair) and the level of damage.”

That was the first step in a $60 million street improvement project voted on by council in 2018. Following the study, the city committed to spread the large chunk of money over 5-6 years, spending about $10 million on repairs.

“I have a ton of information I’d like to ask dealing with District 3 — finding out the percentages of which streets were done this budget year, which department will be responsible for going out and making sure the contractors are doing their jobs?” Kinlaw said, also including the update should encompass all council districts.

Burton said each project is assigned a supervisor that checks on progress daily.

“That’s not happening,” Kinlaw said. “What I’m getting and what I’m seeing is they have a lot of damaged streets they have to go back and redo.”

He also questioned the decision to repair dead-end streets.

“Each council district, each (councilmember) has chosen what streets he or she wants to complete in their district,” Burton said. “I cannot determine that for a councilmember. That has been part of the policy. If council wants to change that policy, you have to do that as a body.”

The street improvement update is scheduled during the communications section of Tuesday’s meeting, which begins at 5:30 p.m.

Those wanting to attend can do so in person at City Hall, 444 Fouth Street, or by watching the live video on portarthurtx.gov.