Commissioners get updates on several on-going projects


The installation of fiber optic cable along county roads and updates on wind energy projects were among the items discussed during the March 16 meeting of the Wayne County Board of Commissioners.

Mike Stansburry with Bauer Underground was present at the meeting to answer questions from the commissioners and Highway Superintendent Mark Casey on work being done to install cable along county roads south of Wayne. The installation is part of the work being done by ALLO Communications to bring fiber optic cable to Wayne.

Commissioner Terry Sievers said he wanted the cable to be "put in the gravel part of the road rather than along the side."

The cable will be installed from 846th Road to 855th Road, along 577th Avenue and then one mile west along 877th Road.

Commissioners questioned why the firm was using this route and were told that this plan would tie the cable into existing cable in Cuming County.

It was also noted that ALLO Communications will have two feeds into the city of Wayne to ensure continuous service.

Commissioners asked Superintendent Casey to adjust the contract for the project to include requiring a bond from Bauer Underground to protect the county against damages to the roads. Also discussed was the need to require the firm to provide 30 tons of gravel per mile to be installed after the work is done.

The contract will be brought back to the commissioners at the next meeting.

Updates from Haystack Wind Energy were given during the meeting. 

Representatives from the firm presented information on changes that have taken place since the last report to the commissioners as well as the general timeline for work to be completed. They indicated that they "hope to get cooperation from the weather" as the project moves forward.

Several changes noted include alternate routes for getting the turbines to the necessary locations. Temporary bridges may need to be built to allow for the movement of the materials and equipment.

A bid from Integrated Tower Systems in Tulsa, Oklahoma was accepted for $67,803 for a portable communications tower on the emergency management trailer.

Four bids had been received by the county for the equipment and while two were lower than the bid that was accepted, they did not meet the bid specifications.

The equipment is to be delivered within 35 days.

In other action, the commissioners approved an $8,836 change order for the installation of additional gutters on the Wayne County Courthouse.

Doug Elting with Berggren Architects, presented information to the commissioners on what these gutters would look like and where they would be installed.

He also shared information on water that got into the attic of the courthouse on March 14 and set off a fire alarm in the building. Because of wind-driven water that got into the building, a portion of the sheet rock on the upper level got wet and will require the opening of the ceiling to determine what needs to be done to remedy the situation.

Commissioners also approved the annual Memorandum of Understanding with Madison County to participate in the 2021-2025 Northeast Nebraska Juvenile Justice Partnership Comprehensive Community Plan.

The Wayne County Board of Commissioners will next meet in regular session on Tuesday, April 6 at 9 a.m. in the Wayne County Courthouse.