Oskaloosan picked for new Planning and Zoning director
Jefferson County Commissioners announced on Monday that Bill Noll, Oskaloosa, will take over as the new Planning and Zoning Director.
Noll, who lives just outside of Oskaloosa, will serve his first day as the new director on Monday.
Chairman Richard Malm said that Noll’s experience locally in dealings with the planning and zoning office and experience with surveying were some key factors in the decision.
Malm said Noll is not naive and knows what it will take to be successful.
“He’s fairly knowledgeable,” Malm said. “He’s coming into it with his eyes open and he realizes that it will be a steep learning curve for him. But he seemed to be up to the task.”
No decision has been made as to whether an assistant will be hired for the office. Former Director Eloise Tichenor had an assistant. Malm said the assistant position will be looked at once Noll has spent some time in the office.
“We haven’t got that far,” Malm said. “We’ll probably let (Noll) get his feet on the ground a little bit and see how things are before we enter that area.”
The county received 13 applications and five finalists were interviewed for the position.
In other actions:
• County Road and Bridge Director Francis Hubbard announced that a bridge on 154th Street just east of Ferguson Road has been closed permanently.
Hubbard said that engineers confirmed that the bridge’s 10-inch center beam is cracked and that as a result other beams of the bridge have been compromised. The bridge was constructed in 1934.
Early estimates for a replacement are about $200,000 and Hubbard said there is no money budgeted for a bridge replacement.
The bridge is only about 24 feet in length but would have to be widened from 22 feet to 34 feet. Although the bridge is small, the creek is too big to allow for a re-enforced concrete box to be installed instead of a bridge.
Costs are not the only hurdle to overcome for a bridge replacement. Hubbard said it could be up to six months to obtain a permit to work over the creek and then a bidding process could take another couple of months.
“It takes time to put everything in place,” Hubbard said.
The daily traffic count for the bridge is 20-25 cars and there are other routes that local travelers can take.
• County Clerk Linda Buttron reported that the Internal Revenue Service has notified the county that a rule that would require cell phone benefits to be reported as income will no longer apply.
The rule would have forced employers to report the benefit. Some county employees have cell phones provided by the county while others receive stipends for using their personal phones.
Buttron said some changes would have to be made to the employee cell phone policy as a result.
• Commissioners met in closed session with Buttron for non-elected personnel.
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