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Rural road

County Roads Overview

The entity responsible for the care and upkeep of Iowa’s roads depends on a variety of factors. These factors include the classification of the road, the amount of traffic using the road, and most importantly, the location of the road. Depending on the location, primary roads in Iowa are controlled by either the state department of transportation (DOT) or by a municipal government. Secondary roads are controlled by the county board of supervisors. The municipal street system is controlled by the respective municipality.

County Control

For roads controlled at the county level, it is the board of supervisor’s duty to establish maintenance policies and provide adequate funds for those procedures. The county engineer is responsible for interpreting the supervisor’s policies and recommending the resources necessary to maintain the roadway in a report.

County Engineer Report

Each year before April 15, the board of supervisors and the county engineer adopts a secondary road construction program, which includes a project accomplishment list for the next fiscal year and a project priority list for the succeeding four fiscal years. The lists are based on the construction funds, local secondary, and farm-to-market. Depending on the department’s approval, any project on the approved priority list may be constructed. This list may be revised due to unforeseen conditions.

After the close of each fiscal year but before September 15, the county engineer should submit an annual report to the department. The report will include a...




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