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Commissioners Pleased With Paving Work

By MARK EVANS

mevans@stegenherald.com

After watching county road and bridge personnel chip and seal a section of Dry Fork Road last week, Presiding Commissioner Garry Nelson had some kind words for Scott Schmieder’s crew.

“They have that down to an art,” he said during last Thursday’s county commission meeting. “They don’t need to be told what to do. When something needs to be done, somebody jumps up and does it. It’s almost like an assembly line.”

Schmieder, who was unable to attend the meeting because of the paving work, is scurrying to beat the weather. The chip and seal paving needs to be done before leaves start falling this fall. Otherwise they foul up the paving.

Schmieder was hoping to have Dry Fork done on Friday.

Meanwhile, after checking out progress on the roads around Chestnut Ridge Road, where residents are hoping the county will take over the roads in that subdivision, the commissioners were not pleased. Nelson said they are “not even close” to having the roads up to the county’s specs for base under the roadway, width and ditches.

More damage was done by Spectrum contractor MasTec on River Aux Vasse Road. Some of it was near the county road shed. However, a neighboring property owner required Spectrum to pay a deposit before allowing them to lay cable there. Therefore, some leverage exists to get the problems fixed.

The commission found that Budrovich Crane Rentals did not charge any additional fees for down time during the recent concrete box culvert installations on Cave Road.

LAKE FOREST COULD USE HELP

Mark Basler and Julie Orrick of the Lake Forest Clean Water District visited with the commissioners Thursday. Basler explained that they had gotten $3.25 million in grant money and had borrowed $5.7 million, based on the first estimate to redo the lake development’s wastewater system.

Inflation and supply chain issues, however have cased the price tag to leap to $7,395,415.

If the district winds up with a shortfall, Basler wondered if county American Relief Plan Action (ARPA) money might be available to make up the difference. He anticipates a likely shortfall of more than $143,000.

Nelson said he will have to review county finances and get back with him.

LATE-NIGHT INTRUDER CAUGHT ON CAMERA

After finding some excrement on the floor, courthouse personnel reviewed security camera video footage. They discovered that an opossum had gotten into the building.

Deputy Steve Barton, the county animal control officer, set up a trap, but the nocturnal visitor was not seen again. It apparently left by whichever means it had entered. Now the problem will be finding the hole and plugging it.