In 2014, the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners used Public Act 283 (P.A. 283) to levy a one-year, 0.5-mill property tax to help address the county’s failing road system at the local level. These funds allowed the Washtenaw County Road Commission (WCRC) to improve an additional 75 miles of county roads during the 2015 construction season. WCRC used the funds to pulverize and resurface some of the worst pavement conditions in the county, including sections of Scio Church Rd, North Territorial Rd, Superior Rd, and Golfside Rd.

Following a successful 2015 construction season, the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners approved a second year of the P.A. 283 millage. The millage funded improvements on 58 miles of roadway during the 2016 construction season.

Map of 2015 & 2016 P.A. 283 Projects

Frequently Asked Questions

What is P.A. 283?

Public Act 283 (P.A.283) was passed in 1909 to provide communities local control over their roads and established Michigan’s county road commissions. P.A. 283 had two goals: (1) to create uniformity in road construction and maintenance and (2) provide cost-efficient and high-quality services for local roads. P.A. 283 outlines a process for county commissions to approve and levy a one-year road millage without a public vote. P.A. 283 guarantees that millage funds are used exclusively for the maintenance of roads, streets, bridges, and culverts in the county.

Why was a road millage needed in Washtenaw County?

There is not enough money being generated to maintain the public road system in our county.

Road funding in Michigan is based on vehicle registration, gas and diesel taxes. In November 2015, the Michigan Legislature approved a new $1.2 billion road funding package. However, the package did not provide any additional funding until 2017. Furthermore, the package phased in new funding in over the course of five years and WCRC did not get the full extent of the funding increase until 2021.

The 2014 & 2015 P.A. 283 millages allowed WCRC to continue improving roads while awaiting new state road funding.

How were the funds spent?

Funds collected from the P.A. 283 millage must be used for roadways, culverts, and bridges. P.A. 283 requires that the road commission, cities, and villages develop a specific list of projects prior to approving the millage.

WCRC used the 2014 millage revenue to complete 32 additional road projects during the 2015 construction season, improving 75 miles of road. Many P.A. 283 projects were preventative chip seal projects which extend the lifespan of roads and help save taxpayer dollars.

Following a successful 2015 construction season, the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners approved a second year of the P.A. 283 millage. The millage funded improvements on 58 miles of roadway in 2016.

How much did it cost me?

The Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners approved a one-year, 0.5 mill property tax in 2014 and 2015 to fund projects during the 2015 and 2016 construction season. The millage taxed property owners $50 for every $100,000 in taxable value.

P.A. 283 generated $7.2 million dollars county-wide. Cities and villages received $3 million (proportional to the amount raised within their borders) to use on their own roads. WCRC received $4 million to fund projects on township roads, located outside of city and village limits.

How long did the P.A. 283 millage last?

The P.A. 283 millage only provides funding for one year. The Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners levied a 0.5 mill on property owners in 2014 and 2015.

How did the P.A. 283 millage work?

  1. The road commission prepared a plan in coordination with cities and villages. This plan included a list of potential projects that could be funded with a county-wide millage.
  2. The Board of County Commissioners voted on whether they will levy a millage. Under the law, counties can levy up to 1-mills for road funding. While voting, county commissioners determined the millage rate.
  3. If the millage is approved, the county commission levies the tax. Cities and villages got the full amount raised in their boarders for their projects. Funds that were raised outside cities and villages were given to the county road commission for the county-wide projects.
  4. The projects listed in the proposed plan were constructed the following calendar year.

2017- 2020 Road Millage

Click to learn more about Washtenaw County’s road & non-motorized path millage levied from 2017 – 2020.

Road Funding

Click to learn more about how WCRC funds road improvements.