Housh addresses several Mitchell County items

The Mitchell County Commissioners conducted their weekly business meeting at the courthouse Monday morning, August 6. All commissioners were present as was the county clerk.

Commissioner Tom Claussen extended “thanks” to Dale Housh for helping set aside discarded bikes at the landfill. Local bike mechanics repaired 10 of the bikes with spare parts from other bikes. These repaired bikes were distributed to children in need. Another 13 bikes were given to a person from Miltonvale for a similar project in their community.

Housh, Superintendent of Public Works, reported that work on the causeway guardrail replacement project was off and running. All the guardrail posts and cable have been removed. Road crews have hauled in 60 loads of dirt and 40 loads of gravel for the widening project. They are in the process of compacting the new material to make a roadbed which will pass inspection. The rain is complicating this work but nobody was complaining. They have received six semi-trailer loads of new posts to use when the replacement starts.

Housh reported that a number of people have inquired about buying some of the old cable. Claussen said the price for scrap metal is $150 a ton. If people want to buy a length of cable, it could be cut to measure and they would pay scrap metal price for it.

Housh was asked how much cable was rolled up when the old cable was removed. He said they have 40-some rolls with each roll containing 500 feet.

Housh said the DOT load-tested 61 bridges in the county and six did not pass. These six will be posted with weight limits lower than those that passed the test.

The oil distributor use to lay down oil for asphalt and chip/seal projects has reached the end of its useful life.  Housh said they have sprayed millions of gallons of oil with it over the years and it is just wore out. The cost of replacement parts, when they can be located, is prohibitive.

Housh’s last item of business was to tell the Commissioners that the lease on the mixing strip south of town expires on October 31. House said the property on which the strip is located is going up for sale and he thinks the new owners may not want to renew the contract on a mixing strip. The County has leased this three acre property for many years with a lease that costs $500 per year. The Commissioners directed Housh to be prepared to work out a more lucrative lease for the new owners with the hope something can be worked out.

The commissioners listened to a request from Leadership Mitchell County to become a sponsoring entity.  This class has over 300 alumni in Mitchell County and it viewed as one of the better leadership training programs in the state of Kansas. The commissioners voted to contribute $300 per year which would sponsor one person in one class.

Stewart Porter, County Engineer from Schwab Eaton, told the commissioners he is working on a grant program that would help finance the second part of the causeway widening project. The current work starts at the bridge and goes north. The program Porter is working on would help pay for the work to be done from the bridge south.

Porter said he had submitted a grant application to KDOT for a bridge replacement project northeast of the Ulum residence. He suggested the he and Housh drive around the county and examine bridges and make a list of ones which might need replaced in the near future. This would be good information for the commissioners to have as they plan for the future.

Cortney Murrow, County Health Nurse, and Kristin Kadel were on hand to present the WIC contract to provide dietician services to Jewell County for the commissioners to sign which they did.

Murrow requested a 20 minute executive session to discuss non-elected personnel. No actions were taken as a result of that closed session.


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