The mission of the Cayuga County Highway Department is to maintain 516 miles of county roads and 43 county-owned bridges in a safe operating condition for the reasonable and prudent driver. Additionally, the department:
- Plows and sands approximately 125 miles of state highways
- Provides equipment and labor support to other county departments, agencies and 23 towns of Cayuga County
- Provides equipment support to other municipalities in the county
Functions & Responsibilities
Annually the department schedules between 70 to 100 miles for surface treatment or chipping. Surface treating is a pavement preventative measure comparable to painting a house or sealing a driveway. The work consists of applying an asphalt emulsion followed by adding stone and then rolling the stone with a rubber-tired roller. For the first few days after the work is done, there will be loose stone so it is important that when driving on a newly surface treated road that speed is reduced to limit the amount of flying stone.
The highway department also paves or recycles roads in addition to the roads that are chipped. The work is more extensive and can take several days to several weeks to complete.
And whereas chipping is a preventative measure paving or recycling provides a longer lasting surface and improves the structure of the pavement. All work is scheduled 1 year in advance and is approved by county Legislature.
Organization of the Department
The department consists of 52 personnel organized into office/administration, engineering support section, road crews, vehicle and equipment maintenance section and motor pool section.
The fleet consists of 22 dump and plow trucks, 5 dedicated 4 by 4 plow trucks, 1 snow blower, 1 heavy duty wrecker 15 pickups and 40 other pieces of construction equipment ranging from compressors and mowers to loaders and a bulldozer all valued at over $7.2 million.
Various permits are required to either work within the County road right of way or have work done by the Highway Department. The permits are:
Any new driveway or extension of and existing driveway requires a driveway permit (PDF). However, no driveway permit will be approved for a development till the local municipality approves the development. There has also been a change in procedures for first-time installation of driveway pipes. A driveway permit is still required, the site will still be checked for sight distance and size of pipe needed. The County Highway Department will install new driveway pipes or extensions to existing pipes, However the Landowners may hire a capable contractor to install after a permit is issued and with the full understanding of Department regulations. A highway department representative will check the pipe after installation to ensure that it was installed correctly and if not the pipe will have to be rest by the installer. All work done at landowner's expense.
Filling in Ditch
The landowners can fill out a permit (PDF) to fill in a roadside ditch. A department representative will meet with them the procedure and schedule routine ditch maintenance if needed to ensure proper install.
The Public Works Committee, made up of 7 county legislators, must approve the request to pipe in a road drainage ditch. After approval is granted the permit will be issued to the applicant. All labor and materials expense is the responsibility of the landowner who is to follow the regulations spelled out in the permit.
Work within Road Right of Way Work Activities
Any construction or maintenance work conducted with the county road right of way requires a permit (PDF). The permit lists activities that require and do not require deposits prior to start of any work. The deposits will be returned to the applicant after completion of the work and the specified time.
County maps are available for purchase from the County Highway Department. For a nominal fee. The cost per map is $2 if mailed or for multiple copies. Checks need to be made payable to
Cayuga County Highway Department.
Annually the highway department bids for road maintenance materials, supplies and equipment rentals. After the bids are approved by the County Legislature a packet with all of the approved bids is developed.
Any municipal entity in the Cayuga County may purchase any item in the packet at the price listed. By purchasing items off the county bid it relieves the municipal agency from bidding out for the same item.
Find Cayuga County bidding information on the Central New York Purchasing System (CNYP).