Rather than borrow funds, Pittsfield Council members are discussing using money from the new marijuana sales tax to build new roads.
“Over the last five years, we’ve borrowed $11 million to do road repairs, so, you know, you’re paying two-three percent interest on money that you’re borrowing,” said Council President Peter Marchettii.
The city gets about $1.4 million from the state for repairs. They need about twice that to maintain the roads.
Council has proposed using half the estimated $3 million marijuana sales tax revenue to meet repair funding goals, but Marchetti says there’s talks about some of that money going into other needs.
If this goes through, the city has a five-year plan to repair many of its roads. But any proposal right now is a shot in the dark because the city doesn’t know exactly how much cash they’ll get from marijuana sales.
Council will find out when the first quarter returns from marijuana sales at the end of March.