Paving projects cost county $3.9M in 2018January 8, 2019
By CANDY NEAL
More than $3.9 million was spent on road-paving projects in Dubois County in 2018, and the bulk of that, more than $2.4 million, was used for hot-mix paving.
County Highway Superintendent Steve Berg gave the Dubois County Commissioners a report Monday of the department’s activity last year, which also included chip-and-seal projects and safety improvements to county roads.
A total of 29 hot-mix, road-paving projects were done. The most expensive of those were done on Mentor Road South in Jefferson Township, which cost $148,788, and on County Road 200 West in Cass Township, $140,797. Those were covered by the department’s motor, vehicle, highway fund, as was work on County Road 700 East in Jackson Township, which cost $114,913, on County Road 750 West in Boone Township, $114,014, and on County Road 125 East in Marion Township, $108,969. The $125,000 used for hot-mix paving on County Road 580 North in Boone Township was covered by Solar Sources, which is working in the area.
Community Crossings grant money helped fund nine projects on the list, with the county covering the remaining $876,113 cost. The most expensive of those were $136,744 for County Road 400 North and $131,262 for 600 North, both in Harbison Township; $130,747 for Portersville Road West in Boone Township; and $129,209 for County Road 200 North in Madison Township.
In addition to the 29 roads, the county highway garage lot was also paved, which cost $36,975.
The department spent $84,029 on applying a road sealant called RejuvTec to roads in the community of Dubois in Marion Township, the Whoderville subdivision in Bainbridge Township, and on County Road 450 North in Marion Township. RejuvTec helps preserve the road, thus making it sustain traffic for a longer period of time.
The Dubois project cost $52,105, Whoderville was $27,031 and 450 North was $4,893.
Work on laying chip-and-seal pavement on County Road 800 West cost $165,023. Paving work on the gravel road is ongoing, using $125,000 the county sets aside each year to improve gravel roads. Since the cost was more than that this year, the highway department covered the cost from its funds, Berg told the commissioners. But next year, only $84,977 will be left of the $125,000 for work on the road, he explained.
Safety improvements on roads in all 12 of the county’s townships totaled $33,947, which is not included in the $3.9 million total. Those improvements included projects like culvert and pipe replacements, road patching, centerline and fog line striping and road-marker upgrades.
The commissioners also:
• Reorganized its board. Chad Blessinger is now president, and Elmer Brames is vice president.
• Welcomed new County Auditor Sandy Morton and new County Attorney Greg Schnarr.
• Hired Mark Lautner as a new 911 dispatcher to replace a dispatcher who is resigning. He will start Feb. 13. The commissioners also created an extra dispatcher position that will be filled once a current dispatcher is named assistant director of the department. Current Assistant Director Jeana Mathies will become director once Janice Love retires at the end of the March.
• Learned from Berg that the metal has been ordered for the floodgates that will be installed on County Road 400 South. Construction of the gates, which will be placed west of the railroad tracks and just south of County Road 375 South, will be scheduled when the metal arrives, he said.
• Heard Berg remind the public that the annual freeze/thaw ordinance will go into effect Tuesday. County roads will have a 10-ton weight limit from then until April 15. Vehicles that have a reason to be on a particular county road, like trucks making routine deliveries, can still use the roads. But the shortest route from state roads must be taken, he said.
• Were reminded that the next commissioners meeting will at 8:45 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 22. On that day, the Dubois County Solid Waste Management District board will meet at 7:30 a.m.; the commissioners are members of the board. The annual meeting of the county’s Board of Finance, which also includes the commissioners, will be at 8:30 a.m. All three meetings will be held at the Dubois County Courthouse Annex, 602 Main St., Jasper.
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