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County one of few not to receive money for road, bridge repairs

Marengo County was one of only six counties in Alabama not to receive state funds given out last week to resurface roads and fix bridges.

However, county officials say they plan to apply for funds in the second round of the state’s ongoing Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation and Improvement Program (ATRIP).

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley announced July 30 which projects were approved for funding this year. Of the 67 counties in Alabama, 61 of them are set to receive some kind of assistance.

Marengo County didn’t apply for any funding this time around but have plans to apply in the second round of ATRIP in late 2013 for help with resurfacing County Roads 53, 7 and 44.

ATRIP pays up to 80 percent of the cost of the project, and the other 20 percent must be matched by either the local government or through a local public-private partnership.

The program’s funding comes through the use of GARVEE bonds, which allows the state to access future federal dollars now in order to pay for road and bridge projects that are needed immediately without raising taxes.

Applications are reviewed by the Alabama Department of Transportation, then sent to the Governor’s office and a special committee for final approval.