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County may start adopt-a-highway

By Staff | May 19, 2010

The Emmet County Board of Supervisors held its weekly meeting at Harold’s Cafe in Ringsted Tuesday. Issues mulled included roads, drainage and work on the county annex building. EDN photo by Michael Tidemann

RINGSTED – The Emmet County Board of Supervisors took to the road Tuesday to hold its weekly meeting at Harold’s Cafe in Ringsted.

The board on occasion changes its meeting venue to assess the needs of people throughout the county. While the meeting was certainly amicable, Ringsted-area residents seemed to appreciate the board’s soliciting their input on county issues.

County engineer Roger Patocka told the board one woman wants to do an adopt-a-highway project on N52. Patocka said he had researched the state’s program that provides vests and bags that the state later picks up.

Patocka said though that secondary roads would probably not put up signs indicating what group was maintaining the road ditches – something the state normally does.

Supervisor Ron Smith said if the party wanting to do road beautification was willing to pay for the sign, he would favor going ahead with the proposal.

“If they put a sign up, we’ll punch a hole in the ground,” said supervisor Alan Madden.

Patocka said he would also check into the possibility of placing a sign on an existing post.

In another matter, Randy Jacobs of the Depew area expressed concern about tile intakes in a drainage district shared by Palo Alto and Emmet counties.

“That ditch really needs to be cleaned at some point,” agreed Ron Beaver of secondary roads.

“With that ditch the way it is now, it’s unfarmable,” Jacobs said.

Smith observed that 90 percent of Emmet County ditches need to be cleaned. However, Beaver said crews needed time and a place to put the dirt.

Smith said that was why he favored contracting out ditch cleaning.

Jacobs admitted he would oppose major work in the ditch which follows a class B road.

“We either dig it or we close it (the road),” said supervisor Jim Jenson.

Beaver said he could address the situation after hauling gravel. He also agreed with a suggestion by supervisor Alan Madden that dirt be feathered out for better flow rather than haul out a lot of dirt.

“I’d rather do that until we get to the point where we need the dirt for a project,” said Beaver.

In other road-related matters, Patocka said crews had been hauling gravel, cleaning out tile intakes and blading.

In other business, the board decided to discuss an outflow charge on DD 37 at the supervisors’ June 1 meeting at the Armstrong Community Center.

Don Heerdt, previously a 12-year member of the board, will officially take a seat on the board Tuesday, May 25. Heerdt will take the seat vacated by the passing of the late supervisor Randy Beaver.

Public health nurse Kathy Preston met with the board regarding replacement of the county sanitarian position that will be open once Terry Reekers resigns from that portion of his duties. Amy Devereaux of Pocahontas, who serves as part-time O’Brien County sanitarian, has indicated an interest in a part-time sanitarian position for Emmet County.

If hired, Devereaux would likely be offered a one-year contract for the first year, said supervisor Bev Juhl.