More patching, no repaving, Palm Bay residents unsatisfied with road repairs

Public Works adds more temporary patches to pothole-covered streets

PALM BAY, Fla. – Palm Bay's Public Works Department is advising one southeast city neighbor to leave patching potholes to city employees.

"Putting concrete down in a road is not the correct way to do it," Public Works Assistant DirectorBarney Weiss said in reaction to a News 6 report Friday showing a resident patching potholes himself.

Tired of waiting on the city to repave his street, News 6 captured Scott Monroe pouring concrete into a pothole in front of his home.

This week, the city paid a visit to Monroe's home and removed the concrete and patched it with asphalt.

Workers returned to the neighborhood Thursday, patching more potholes.

The city said it's addressed 1,500 pothole complaints with patching in just the past year.

"Four days a week, 10 hours a day, we've got crews out running these streets doing potholes," Weiss said.

When asked when the city will repave pothole-covered streets instead of patching them Weiss replied, "That's a major goal of ours."

Weiss referred to the city working to figure out when it will start applying last November's voter-approved assessment to pay for repaving roads.

Weiss said, simply put, the worse condition your street is in, the more you'll pay.

"The reality is we're always going to be challenged with resources," Weiss answered in reply to a question from News 6 about whether leaders will then stop telling residents the city doesn't have the money to fix their roads.

Weiss said the city has "never" misused tax dollars.

"Patches on patches on patches, doesn't fix the situation," neighbor Doug Latford said after workers finished patching his street.

Latford said taxpayers have paid for maintenance all along, but haven't received proper services in return.

"This doesn't fix the problem. It compiles the problem because the road is that much more rough," said Latford, who also spoke to News 6 last Friday when Monroe, his neighbor, patched a pothole with concrete.
"We're showing progress. Now, the progress may not be as fast as everyone's looking for, but it is progress," Weiss said.

Leaders discussed the city's budget for the next fiscal year Thursday night at City Hall.

It contains no money for repaving neighborhood roads.

Neighbor Paul Basham, also featured in this series of reports from News 6, plans to attend Tuesday night's City Council meeting with a bigger petition demanding roads be paved than he presented to the council a week ago.​

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