Taxpayers seeing double over traffic signs

6:59 PM, May 24, 2012   |    comments
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CLEVELAND, Ga - Traffic signs in White County have some taxpayers seeing double and wondering if they've been double-crossed when it comes to spending their tax dollars.

The county manager insists there has been no waste, but adds the addition of traffic signs all over the area was not White County's idea.

Taxpayers started asking questions when they started seeing multiple traffic signs going up on county roads. In many cases there are signs that appear to be exactly the same sitting side-by-side.

At the intersection of Westmoreland and Alternate 75, there are no less than a dozen stop signs.

"It doesn't make any sense," said Elaine Hulsey.

Hulsey runs a child care center near the intersection, where the county has added eight stop signs where there were four.

She wonders what's going on with her tax dollars.

"There's a sign over there has a little graffiti on it, but it's still readable," said Hulsey.
I don't understand why they're replacing the old ones. They seem fine. The old ones look just as good as the new ones."

It's not just stop signs. Taxpayers are seeing double when it comes to speed limit and other warning signs.

County Manager Michael Melton says there is one thing wrong with the old signs.

"They don't meet federal guidelines for reflectivity," said Melton.

The Federal Highway Administration has issued new requirements that call for traffic signs that are more reflective and, in the view of the feds, safer for nighttime travelers. White County got a 400-thousand dollar federal grant to replace any signs that didn't comply without spending local tax dollars.

Federal tax dollars are paying for the new signs. County crews just haven't taken down the old ones yet.

Melton says if not for the new regulations there would have been no need to replace the signs. He says the road department is waiting for all the old signs to go up before taking down the old ones. Then those old signs will be recycled.

Elaine Husley is counting the days, along with all the traffic signs around her business.

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