Washington County Commissioners agreed to place no thru truck signs on several county roads at their meeting today (Tuesday), but these new signs may be the last ones put up for some time.
After a pair of public hearings, commissioners unanimously approved the installation of signs on William Penn Road, from the intersection of FM 390 East and FM 390 North to Highway 105 in Precinct One; Hohenwalde School Road, from Highway 290 to Old Mill Creek Road in Precinct Four; and Old Mill Creek Road, from Hohenwalde School Road to Brenham city limits in Precinct Four.
However, after lengthy discussion, Commissioner Kirk Hanath suggested no more signs be installed until County Engineer Ross McCall is able to perform research on the signs’ effectiveness and provide that data to the court. McCall was in agreement with Hanath’s request.
Following comments from several residents and the court during the public hearings, concerning topics such as enforcement and punishment, McCall said it was clear that more work needs to be done on his end before any more signs are created.
McCall said safety, traffic volume and infrastructure are three major factors when considering the installation of no thru truck signs. He said the county needs to ensure the signs are enforced, otherwise there is “no point” in putting them up.
Hanath said if the Washington County Sheriff’s Office is asked to enforce the signs, it should be kept in the loop of them being installed rather than be notified after installation is done. Commissioner Joy Fuchs said she will be in close contact with the constables to have them patrol, adding that she regularly calls the oil and gas company on Old Mill Creek Road to make sure its subcontractors stay on certain roads.
Hanath, County Judge John Durrenberger and Commissioner Candice Bullock all agreed they would like to see documentation reviewing the processes and costs involved with sign installation. Fuchs and Commissioner Don Koester said they had done their due diligence on these roads before asking for signs, and wanted to address the roads before large trucks tear them up or potentially cause an accident. Fuchs and Koester also said that alternate routes are available for truck drivers to take.
One resident asked what the punishment would be for a driver who violated a no thru truck order. County Attorney Renee Mueller said it would be as if a driver got a speeding ticket on Highway 290, but the punishment would likely weigh heavier on the drivers as they are commercially licensed.
Also at today’s meeting, commissioners:
- Approved formal notice from AMP Texas Pipelines, LLC for a natural gas pipeline road board in the 6400 block of Quail Run Road in Precinct Three.
- Approved formal notice from PGMS-CWCWSC for a two-inch road bore for a one-inch water service line installation at 355 Lange Lake Road in Precinct Three.
- Approved formal notice from PGMS-Oak Hill Fresh Water Supply District for a two-inch road bore for a one-inch water line replacement at 3810 North Briarwood Drive in Oak Hill Acres in Precinct Three.
- Heard monthly reports from engineering and development services, information technology, emergency management coordinator, county and district clerks, justices of the peace, auditor, tax assessor/collector, treasurer and constables.