A proposal by the Texas Department of Transportation to convert battered paved roads into gravel roads was put on hold Tuesday.

TxDOT agreed to a 60-day moratorium to allow counties to find another way to make repairs.

“It is critically important that counties be given an opportunity to find alternatives to tearing up paved roads,” swaid State Sen. Carlos Uresti (D-San Antonio).

In July, TxDOT said it would tear up more than 80 miles of the paved highways to convert them to gravel. Most of those roadways are in fracking areas where heavy trucks are being blamed for deteriorating roads. Dimmit County, which includes part of the Eagle Ford Shale, would see it’s roads changed first.

Now, Uresti said, counties can submit a letter asking for the moratorium and a review by TxDOT. If the agency approves the moratorium, the county would have an opportunity to find an alternative to the State’s plan.

“The oil and gas industry must get involved as well,” Uresti said.
Uresti encouraged affected counties to hold town hall meetings to get more input to find solutions.