Mahoning County’s $1.5 million road-resurfacing program this year is scheduled to include repaving 8.61 miles of county roads, including portions of some heavily traveled roads in Youngstown’s inner ring of suburbs.
These include Walker Mill Road, which links Boardman and Poland, from the I-680 bridge to North Lima Road; Southern Boulevard between Indianola and Matthews roads in Boardman; and Kirk Road from Raccoon Road to state Route 46 in Austintown.
Other roads on the tentative list are: Simon Road from Indianola Road to South Avenue in Boardman; Fifth Street from the Struthers city limits to Lyon Boulevard; and Clingan Road from U.S. Route 224 to the Struthers limits, both in Poland.
In rural areas farther from Youngstown, roads scheduled to be repaved are New Buffalo Road between Western Reserve and Lynn roads in Beaver Township; Duck Creek Road between Western Reserve and Calla roads in Goshen Township; and North Benton West Road from 12th Street to Johnson Road in Smith Township.
The following constitute an additional 7.4 miles of roads scheduled for chip and seal treatment, which uses a tar-based material with stone on top:
Silica Road from state Route 45 to Bailey Road in Jackson Township.
Blosser Road between state routes 164 and 165 in Beaver Township.
Shilling Road from state Route 534 to the Shilling Mill Bridge over the Mahoning River in Berlin Township.
Glacier Road between Beard and Springfield roads in Springfield Township.
Bailey Road from Ellsworth Road to U.S. Route 224 in Ellsworth Township.
On Thursday, the county commissioners voted to close Shilling Road between state Route 534 and Bedell Road from Tuesday through Friday next week for a culvert replacement in advance of this summer’s road repair.
They also awarded a $284,793 asphalt-leveling contract to Diorio Paving of Girard on the roads that will later get the chip-and-seal treatment.
This year’s paving program is substantially smaller than last year’s $2.3 million program, which resurfaced 15.33 miles and chipped and sealed an additional 4.36 miles.
County Engineer Patrick Ginnetti said the county’s ability to repave roads is limited by the rising cost of asphalt, of which oil is a component. “With petroleum prices going up, the price of asphalt goes up,” he said.
However, fuel-tax revenues statewide have declined an average of 1.3 percent annually from $212.6 million in 2008 to $201.6 million last year, noted Kristin N. Barrett, public relations and special projects coordinator for the county engineer’s office, which is a beneficiary of these revenues.
Mahoning County has 488 miles of county roads.
Commissioners heard county Job and Family Services officials say that the county’s state-funded summer youth employment program for age 14 to 24 has been expanded from $691,278 last year to $915,906 this year. The program will run from May 15 to Aug. 31, and participants may work for government, schools, nonprofit, faith-based or private-business employers.
Last year, the employers paid the summer workers directly and waited for reimbursement from JFS, but this year, the young workers will be paid by the Mahoning- Columbiana Training Association.
Last year, 119 youth worked for 15 employers and performed tasks ranging from clerical to grass cutting, lifeguarding , cleaning and home repairs. Lori Murphy, a JFS program administrator, said she hopes the program can employ 200 to 250 youths this summer.