Making sure rubber meets the road the focus of a bill in the Kentucky Legislature

Republished from WEKU.

A western Kentucky lawmaker is hoping the rubber meets the road with a piece of legislation gaining some traction. It primarily has to do with farm vehicles.

The bill sponsored by GOP Representative Walker Thomas requires iron, steel, or wooden wheels to have a rubber strip or rubber compound. Thomas told his colleague metal wheels on tractors and trailers can dig grooves in pavement.

“A lot of these steel wheels, metal wheels are really gouging a lot of our roads, county, city, and state roads down in our communities,” said Thomas.

Thomas said rutted roads can be damaged further when water freezes. The legislation calls for fines between 20 and a hundred dollars. Transportation Committee Chair Johnny Blanton said court costs can significantly increase the final citation expense.

Thomas, meanwhile, said factory wheels are sometimes modified.

“There’s been times when I’ve heard from dealers that they bring perfectly brand new equipment in there with tires and those are immediately taken off, the rubber on it. So, it is something that we’re gonna see if like ok if it’s farm equipment leave the rubber on,” said Thomas.

In response to a question, Thomas said there is what he termed a “goodwill” fee established in some counties to address road issues. But he said it’s a relatively low amount compared to the cost of repairing roadways.

The measure is now before the full House.

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Originally published by WEKU.

Republished with permission.