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Commissioners look at possible cuts to road and bridge

by Dennis Sharkey

County Commissioners are looking for ways to save money and a possible retirement in the road and bridge department may be the answer.

First District Commissioner Lynn Luck told Road and Bridge Director Francis Hubbard on Monday to explore possibly eliminating the position.

An elimination of a road grader route would mean a reduction from the current structure of nine county routes to eight.

Hubbard said the employee is still contemplating the decision and may not retire. Furthermore he said the route would be eliminated in the northeast area of the county and would be hard to reconfigure.

“How would you do that?” Hubbard questioned. “Who would absorb that.”

“That’s why I think the conversation needs to begin,” Luck said. “I don’t have the answers. I don’t know.”

Chairman Richard Malm told Hubbard he would have to look at all eight routes for configuration.

Hubbard said it would be hard to do because of Lake Perry. He said reconfiguration could only push south.

He also said it would be difficult because the routes in the northeast part of the county have more miles because there is less traffic. He said some routes could have 35 to 40 more miles added.

Malm disputed Hubbard’s numbers.

“I think you’re off on your numbers there,” Malm said. “I think it’s something we ought to take a serious look at doing.”

Hubbard said those figures include blacktop roads because road graders are responsible for snow removal in the winter. He said response times for removal will be affected.

Luck said the county may need to look at private contractors for bad snow storms.

“I think there’s a lot of things we need to think about,” Luck said.

Luck said exploring ideas is the responsible thing to do.

“I don’t think we want to do it,” Luck added. “I think we probably should do it. We need to do it or at least be thinking about it.”

In other actions:

• Commissioners approved a resolution to transfer of a conditional use permit between two operators of cell phone towers.

The tower is near U.S. 24 Highway and K-4 Highway.

Commissioners asked if any fees were associated with the transfers.There are no fees for transfers on the fee schedule that was approved in July.

Commissioners said they would like to explore a fee for these types of transfers because of the time burden it puts on the Planning and Zoning office.

Planning and Zoning Director Bill Noll said there can be some thought put into a fee and that there is another case that will be coming up soon.

• Commissioners approved a resolution that would exempt certain county employees from the Fair Labor Standards Act.

• Maxine Hefty has been the Delaware Township treasurer but has resigned. Commissioners appointed Lee Welborn to the position. The change will take effect Jan. 1.

• Commissioners are republishing the 2011 budget because of additional non-tax revenues that were taken in. By law the county must republish the budget in order to spend the funds. The four areas affected were the general fund, road and bridge department, ambulance department and the health department.

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Posted by on Dec 18 2011. Filed under County, County Commission, Government. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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