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Merits Of Licence Fee Debated

Wednesday, April 10, 2013 - 5:23 AM

Those in favor of an additional $5 licence fee in Seneca County lobbied on its behalf Tuesday. The Courier reports several people showed up at the county commissioners meeting to talk about why raising more money for highway improvements is needed. Rich Focht, Chief Executive Officer of the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corporation, said the improvements are necessary for safety reasons. In the past three years, there have been 12 fatal accidents, with 21 people killed and 215 people seriously injured in Seneca County.

Much of the focus is on U.S. 53. Supporters of the licence fee say the $198,000 raised annually from the extra cost could be used as matching funds with the state to turn 53 into a so called "Super 2" highway, which would improve the two-lane roadway with wider shoulders and berms, as well as additional turn lanes at intersections.

Commissioner Fred Zoeller recently made the proposal to enact the $5 fee. It received a tepid response from the two other commissioners.

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