County repeats opposition to Dog Creek NRD reservoir


The Wayne County Commissioners expressed their objection at Tuesday’s meeting to sacrificing recent infrastructure work for a proposed reservoir in northern Wayne County.
Commissioner Jim Rabe was not in attendance at Tuesday’s meeting, but board members Dean Burbach and Randy Larson both expressed reservations to a proposed reservoir along Dog Creek that would flood bridges and road work the county has only recently improved with taxpayer support.
“I think we’ve got to protect our roads and bridges,” Burbach said, thanking Larsen for comments he made to the Lower Elkhorn Natural Resources District at their meeting last week in Norfolk. “Your comments summed it up pretty good.”
The county recently repaired three bridges in the Dog Creek area at a cost to taxpayers of $1,578,722.48. In addition, four bridges that are in the area have a 100 percent efficiency rating, and Larsen said he’s not interested in losing those roads and bridges in the proposed area.
“It really affects the county,” he said, noting that the county would have to hire additional law enforcement and pay for additional equipment and training to patrol a new reservoir. “Not only that, but it really affects Wayne County farmers.”
The county board had a limited agenda, highlighted by the opening of bids for the Haun Bridge project near Carroll. Five bids were received, with the low bid submitted by Dixon Constructon of Correctionville, Iowa, for $554,129.70.
Three of the five bidders noted they could start work on the project in the spring of 2017, while two others said they could begin work yet this year. K2 Construction of Lincoln, which had the second lowest bid at $597,273.50, noted that it could begin construction yet this month and have it completed by the end of September. Kea Construction of Milford also noted a 2016 start date, stating it would start the project in October and complete it in January of 2017. Their bid was $702,004.15.
County road manager Mark Casey told the board that final cross sections of the Chiefs Way and Centennial Road projects could be completed by the end of this week. A couple of landowners in the area have yet to be contacted, but he said he thought that would be completed before the week is out.
Emergency Manager Nic Kemnitz talked to the board about some mobile applications for smart phones that could be used to assist in disaster situations, and Larsen encouraged Kemnitz to look for a mobile tablet that could be used with the software. Kemnitz was also congratulated by the board on being named Nebraska’s Emergency Manager of the Year.
The county board’s next meeting is Tuesday, May 17 at 9 a.m. in the county courthouse.