DUBLIN, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) - A penny can go a long way. Residents in Laurens County will soon see major improvements to their roadways, all thanks to the recently passed transportation penny tax.
The one cent penny sales tax started on January 1st. The money collected will go towards improving the roadways.
"We are a very large county and we can't begin to take care of all our needs at one time, so this is another piece of the puzzle," Laurens County Administrator Bryan Rogers said.
The first local project on the list is Springhaven Road. The county's newest high school causes a lot of traffic on this two-lane road. Laurens County Commissioner Buddy Adams says the plan is to widen the roadway, re-surface it, and replace the bridge.
"We have a lot of bridges in our area that need to be replaced. [They're] old," Adams said.
On the regional scale, the big project is the Oconee River Bridge. It would build a new river crossing at the Blackshear Ferry Landing and create more access to the east side of the county.
"This will give us more access for people to come into Dublin and to shop and some of these other counties, like Wilkinson County, Treutlen County, and Johnson County will have a straight shot to come into Dublin," Adams said.
"Those people in those communities will probably cut their time by 25 to 30 minutes to get to those shops and medical facilities," Rogers said.
The county says its grateful for the TSPLOST and cant' wait to get its first check by the end of this month.
"We've been working on it for a long time," Adams said.
Both of these projects are set to begin at the end of the year. The first band of local and regional projects should be completed by 2015. The next round of transportation improvements will kick off in 2016.