County advances ditch system project
WORTHINGTON -- Nobles County commissioners on Tuesday received a list of ditch systems that make the best candidates for a redetermination of benefits, and authorized Public Works Director Stephen Schnieder to move forward with a request for prop...
WORTHINGTON -- Nobles County commissioners on Tuesday received a list of ditch systems that make the best candidates for a redetermination of benefits, and authorized Public Works Director Stephen Schnieder to move forward with a request for proposals on the work.
"The candidates we chose generally had a smaller area of benefit -- the boundaries were more defined and you don't have to go out looking for other benefitting property owners," said Schnieder.
Among the ditches making the initial list are County Ditch 2 west of Bigelow, Ditch 14 west of Brewster and Ditch 25 south of Worthington, and Judicial Ditch 2 south of Fulda, Ditch 3 north of Brewster, Ditch 5 west of Brewster and Ditch 10 north of Bigelow, which are each smaller ditch systems. Two other ditches -- Judicial Ditch 11 southeast of Wilmont and County Ditch 4 west of Worthington -- are considered to have less defined drainage boundaries, but were added to the list because they are short funding.
Schnieder recommended the county inform the affected property owners of the process for redetermination of benefits by planning some informational meetings on the issue.
"Maybe there would be one or two systems (that landowners) voluntarily want this done," he said.
It is estimated it will take at least eight months to a year for any work to begin on the redetermination of benefits.
In other action, the board:
* Set a public hearing for 9 a.m. Nov. 23 to discuss a clean-out of Nobles County Ditch 5. According to Schnieder, one property owner has a couple of feet or more of silt built up in the ditch system on his property. Clearing out a portion of the ditch is estimated to cost $4,500. If the weather remains favorable, Schnieder said they'd like to complete the work yet this year.
* Received an update on the bridge on CSAH 1, south of Brewster. Schnieder said the structural engineer's report is expected sometime this week, and it is anticipated the county will be able to install concrete barriers within the next couple of weeks so the bridge can be used again until the bridge can be repaired.
* Approved the transition recommendations from the Rock-Nobles Community Corrections Joint Powers Board relating to the delivery of financial and human resource services. Nobles County, which had served as the fiscal agent for corrections, had decided not to continue in that capacity. RNCC was going to seek a request for proposals when Rock County offered to provide the services in an in-kind manner.
* Approved a trail agreement with the Frosty Riders, and accepted a $39,339 snowmobile maintenance grant with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
* Approved agreements between Nobles County Family Services and the Red Rock Ridge Learning Center in Windom for day treatment services to children with severe and persistent mental health issues; Guardianship contract renewals with four individuals; chemical dependency treatment services with New Beginnings; and a transportation program contract with Western Community Action.
* Received a report from Family Services Income Maintenance Supervisor Mike Thies on guidelines for accessing programs including food support, cash assistance, medical assistance and child care assistance. He presented information on the income guidelines and eligibility for those programs.
Thies reported that the number of caseloads grew by 30 percent in medical assistance between 2006 and 2010, and he now receives approximately 165 applications for assistance per month.
* Accepted a $7,800 HAVA Operating grant.
* Approved a contract with Greg Gruis for snow removal services for the county's downtown facilities in Worthington.
* Approved the closure of County State Aid Highway 21 and Nobles County 51 within the city of Round Lake from 3 to 4 p.m. Nov. 27, for the community's Winterfest Parade.
* Appointed Commissioner Marv Zylstra as delegate and Commissioner Diane Thier as alternate to the Minnesota Counties Insurance Trust.