Dirt roads will be sealed across Wangaratta for the first time in years, as soon as the council puts in place criteria to stop residents thinking their roads are the most in need.
One councillor pulled out a bottle of wine at last week's meeting to demonstrate what he believed was the best use of the program.
Wangaratta Council already has similar criteria in place for 50 and 60km/h roads in rural townships, allocating points for each benefit accomplished by the road being sealed.
The need to extend this system to 100km/h dirt roads came after the council received a petition in June last year to seal Oxley-Meadow Creek Road at Oxley and Whorouly-Bobinawarrah Road at Milawa.
The plan was proposed by the council's infrastructure services director Alan Clark.
"We haven't sealed 100km/h rural roads for many years, up until this year where we've gotten back into it," he told last week's meeting.
"We get many requests for the sealing of rural roads and this criteria will give us something to base our criteria on and give us something to focus our work effort on."
Cr Harry Bussell lifted up a bottle of Dal Zotto prosecco, which is transported on a gravel road, to demonstrate what could be at risk.
"The rural roads program is vital to improve the rural road network. These roads are the rivers of trade, transport, people, produce ad in particular the King Valley prosecco, which is the shining light of the wine industry," he said.
"Rather than everyone thinking that their road is the most important, this plan makes it much fairer for staff to rank the roads."
The highest number of 12 points will be allocated to link roads or those with a school or kindergarten and eight points for a collector road or public meeting place.
Cr Dave Fuller credited Wangaratta Council's ward system for sparking the new criteria, saying advocacy from rural-based councillors ensured money was not just spend in the city.
"In the past we've dropped money right out of it and thankfully, under director Clark's guidance, we've spent more in the last few years than we have in the past," he said.
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