Matanuska-Susitna Borough

Operation & Maintenance FAQ

These are the most frequent questions asked of our Operations & Maintenance Staff. If there is something not covered here, please give us a call. 

Contacts

MSB Public Works & Maintenance Division

Road Complaint Hotline

(907) 861-7755

Road Signs & Street Lights

(907) 861-7755

Road Project Management

(907) 861-7754

Maintenance

Everyone pays road tax as part of their tax assessment.  If you reside or own property in a designated RSA, you are responsible to pay your fair share of those maintenance costs incurred by that RSA.

The road must be certified by the Borough that it is constructed to Borough standards.  If it is not, that is the responsibility of the residents on that road to bear the costs of bringing it up to a certifiable condition.  After that is done, the residents can petition or request the Borough inspect it again and consider it for maintenance if it meets the required standards.

Plowing

Contractors responsibility is to plow mainline routes, school bus routes, and all the pavement first.  They are then responsible for secondary routes and finally residential streets and roads.   The Contractor also has,  by contract, 48 hours to complete an initial plowing following a storm event.

The RSA Contractors are required (by contract) to “minimize snow berms” as best as can be expected and they are allowed to leave a berm of 12 inches or less and no more than 24 inches at the base in driveways. Any berms left in front of mailboxes are the responsibility of the resident, but again the contractors are asked to try and minimize the size and depth of the snow left behind. This is all due to economics, the RSA cannot bear the costs of a no berm policy.

Traffic Mitigation

No, not unless there are weight restrictions in place, and then all we can do is caution them that they may be exceeding those restrictions. The public roads are just that, public.  We cannot restrict the use of the roads to any one user just because someone does not want them using them.

This is something that comes through the local RSA board during the CIP process.  If you want a street light you must make your local board aware of your request and they will bring it forward as a request on the CIP list.  One of the major criteria for street lights is intersections that are also school bus stops.

Speed bumps/humps are a maintenance concern both in maintaining them and for equipment.  They are also a liability for two wheel traffic both motorcycles and bicycles.

Signs

Contact Public Works to submit sign requests. Requestor will need to provide location and contact information. A petition from residents along the subject road is helpful. The Borough will look at the road and evaluate the need and if warranted determine a suitable location. The requestor will be notified of the determination. The Borough will then install the sign when conditions permit.

These types of signs are thought to be a means of traffic calming, and they do not work in that capacity. The Borough posts speed limits that appropriate for residential areas and the enforcement of those speed limits are not within the powers of the Borough.

Paving

This question has to be directed to your local RSA board for inclusion in the CIP (Capital Improvement Program) process.

Grading

It does absolutely no good to grade a dry road, it actually does more damage than good as it causes to road surface to unravel and it pulls the larger rocks in the surface loose.  It also removes the fines from the surface, and it is that material that binds the top portion of the road together.

This is what we should be doing, we could then grade roads all summer and not have to wait for natural moisture (rain) to occur.  The practice of pre-watering the roads prior to grading is cost prohibitive, that is the only reason we do not do this.

Dust Control

Dust control for gravel roads are a CIP (Capital Improvement Program) issue and must start at the local RSA board level for nomination and inclusion in the program. The Road Superintendents will also place very dusty roads in the nomination process with the RSA board during the development of the CIP list.

The RSA budgets cannot afford the cost to do this.