Anyone who's grumbled about the condition of Sonoma County roads has a new friend.
A group of county residents recently formed Save Our Sonoma Roads to lobby local elected officials to spend more money on road maintenance and improvements.
Craig S. Harrison, who lives along Sonoma Mountain Road in the Bennett Valley area, and Michael Troy, who lives along Lichau Road east of Rohnert Park, cofounded the group and helped set up its website, SOSRoads.org.
Harrison said that as president of the Bennett Valley Homeowners Association he's been interested in the condition of infrastructure in the area and had been wondering why roads get worse every year. The more he looked into the issue the more he realized that a citizens group was needed to push for improvements.
He got together with Troy, whose wife is active in a campaign to get the county to improve Lichau Road, and formed Save Our Sonoma Roads. He said the group now has about 25 to 30 members or participants and is actively seeking more.
Harrison said the group is in a public education stage now but soon plans to meet with each member of the county Board of Supervisors to lobby for road improvements. As elections come up, he said, the group may start endorsing candidates who make better roads a priority.
He said his research into the county's roads crisis made him realize county road crews are doing everything they can but they aren't given enough money to properly maintain the county's 1,382.8 miles of roads.
That's led him and Save Our Sonoma Roads to seek help from the county's supervisors because "the buck stops there," he said. Harrison said his group wants county residents to contact the supervisors and tell them their spending priorities are misaligned and roads need more funding.
The group's website — CLICK HERE — has a variety of helpful information, from FAQs about local roads to county reports on road issues to signing up for the group's newsletter.
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