Equipment: Machinery upgrades needed at DOH

Not all the suggestions submitted in response to Gov. Jim Justice’s request for information on secondary road repairs were for specific highway projects. A substantial number of Division of Highways officials say they need better equipment if they are to do a good job of maintaining roads.

It may be tempting for Justice and other officials to put those requests on the back burner, in the interest of getting as many road repair projects as possible done. But DOH crews have need for certain machinery all the time. Access to it can keep highways in better condition, avoiding expensive repairs down the line.

Recall, of course, that in his attempt to assign blame to his predecessors for the mess in which Mountain State roads have been left, Justice criticized other administrations’ handling of state equipment.

“If we’re going to be factual, we starved ourselves,” Justice said. “We absolutely sold equipment that could have been doing maintenance in the counties.”

He referred to what happened (though he exaggerated the situation a bit) as having “disarmed ourselves.”

Now is his chance to re-arm us, then.

Justice should ensure the DOH has the equipment (and manpower) to get done the massive task at hand.