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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: December 3, 2018 09:51 AM
From: Representative Matthew D. Dowling
To: All House members
Subject: Legislation Requiring Local Government Approval Before Abandoning State Roads
In the near future, I plan to re-introduce former HB 880, legislation which would amend Act 428 of 1945, also known as the State Highway Law, to require local government approval before a state road can be abandoned within its borders by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT).

Under current law, a state road abandoned by PennDOT is automatically maintained by, and at the expense of, the township, borough, incorporated town or city wherein the road is located. As a result, these municipalities are often forced to support abandoned state roads without giving any consent. By mandating local ownership over such roads, we are harming the delivery of essential local services and forcing property tax increases to pay for the necessary maintenance. For these reasons, local governments should not be forced to accept responsibility for any abandoned state road unless they have first given their approval prior to PennDOT taking action.

The Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors has expressed support for this type of change in statute.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this important piece of legislation to better serve our local governments. Thank you.

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