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Frequently Asked Questions

How much tax do I pay per gallon of gasoline?

There is a total of 37.3 cents of transportation taxes per gallon on gasoline sold within Michigan. This amount consists of 19 cents for state tax and 18.3 cents for federal tax. The sale of gasoline is also subject to the 6 percent sales tax in Michigan, however, this amount is not used for transportation improvements.

Why are weight restrictions placed on county roads each spring?

When the roads thaw out from the top down each spring, moisture is trapped on the surface, and heavy loads would cause the break-up of gravel and bituminous surfaces.

Why doesn't the Road Commission pave more gravel roads?

Our state legislature has determined that Road Commissions can spend no more than 10% of their transportation income on construction, so that essential activities such as winter maintenance and the repair of poor paved roads cannot be neglected.

Why does it seem like Houghton County spends so little on road construction?

The Houghton County Road Commission has one of the greatest challenges in the state of Michigan. 

The state of Michigan's system of road funding provides the least amount of dollars per mile for most rural county road commissions because they are the least populated per mile when compared to the Michigan Department of Transportation, cities and villages and urban county road commissions.

Our great solitude and tremendous winter recreational opportunities do also, translate into great winter maintenance activity expenses, whereas our county road commission routinely spends 30% - 60% of our income plowing and sanding each winter, the highest ratio in the state of Michigan.

Why doesn't my street get plowed right away when it snows?

The ideal snowstorm would occur each night between 3:00 a.m. and 5:30 a.m., so that when our plows begin to work they can clean up the roads to bare pavement for travellers each day.

If we receive a heavy snow after your normal plowing time, we try to return to clean up but it may have to wait until the following day if the storm is severe.

Such things such as soft shoulders early or late in the season or equipment breakdowns may also delay our plowing or sanding services.

Also, very severe weather may necessitate that the plowing or sanding be intensified on high traffic roads, which disrupts the normal routine.

Feel free to call our office if you have any questions concerning our plowing schedules.

Why does it appear that you stop grading some gravel roads in the summer?

The most effective grading is done when roads are dampened by rain. Grading during very dry weather causes the road materials to dry out, causing them to loose their binding qualities and creating more dust.

How do I have a speed limit placed on my road?

Speed limits on county roads are set by the Michigan State Police following a traffic study, which includes a radar survey for a particular section of road. The speed limit to be established must be reasonable and enforceable.




Posted October 24, 2023

Job Posting - Permanent Mechanic

Posted September 29, 2023

Winter Parking








20140 Gagnon Circle
P.O. Box 269
Hancock, Michigan 49930

T (906) 482-3600
F (906) 482-9600

The Houghton County Road Commission is dedicated to providing a county road system that is safe and convenient for public travel while practicing sound financial management, respect for the environment, and sensitivity to community concerns.

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