EAST PEORIA — A rating system that identifies the worst streets in East Peoria is used to determine what streets make the maintenance list every year. On Tuesday, the East Peoria City Council approved spending $900,000 to fix 16 of the most cracked, bumpy and potholed streets in the city.

"It isn't a lot of money for maintenance," said Mayor John Kahl. "But I think we are headed in the right direction."

The council approved the maintenance program to be paid with $900,000 taken from the city's Motor Fuel Tax fund. The amount follows the trend of increased spending on streets in the past couple of years, itself followed by the lowest spending in more than a decade.  

The 16 streets that will receive scarification and sealcoat treatment this spring, summer and fall are Royal Vista Drive, Regal Lane, Regent Court, Illini Drive, Mathew Parkway, Highview Road, North Barbara Lane, Julian Avenue, Taylor Street, Kerfoot Street, Woodway Court, Chestnut Street, Briar Court, Jane Street and Rickey Street. A complete list of projects and a map will be posted on the city's website at cityofeastpeoria.com.

Although budgets will remain tight for the next several years in East Peoria as it continues to pay off the $100 million it borrowed to build the commercial Levee District on old Caterpillar Inc., property commissioners said they hoped to find money to reconstruct some city by-ways, not just play catch-up with annual maintenance. Areas like Springfield and Grange roads and Centennial Drive need more work than simple maintenance, but that costs more than the city currently has to spend.

"Maintenance is important," said Dan Decker, the commissioner who oversees the city's street department. "Reconstruction would be great."

Decker said February is not too early to be planning for summer road repairs.

"The earlier we decide, we get historically better pricing," he said.

Scott Hilyard can be reached at 686-3244 or by email at shilyard@pjstar.com. Follow @scotthilyard on Twitter.