Bridge construction dominates county meeting

Deteriorating county bridges and what to do about them continues to be a major discussion for the Marion County Commission.

After discussions Monday with area farmers who must cross the bridge for field work at Goldenrod over the Cottonwood River, the three commissioners decided they must take more time to discuss bridge concerns before taking action.

Commissioner Dan Holub said he wants to be in on bridge inspections with engineering consultants to better understand what must be done and state considerations.

Road and Bridge Superintendent Jesse Hamm said he was looking for someone who lives close to the Goldenrod bridge who would donate dirt to help shore up the bridge, so that the county didn’t have to haul it so far.

The commissioners discussed a variety of possible bridge constructions including Army surplus heavy steel bridges designed for heavy equipment like tanks.

Commission Chairman Randy Dallke said he had supposed the commissioners would be closing the Goldenrod bridge, but now he is considering alteratives.

The commissioners also continued discussion of the Cottonwood bridge at 190th with Commissioner Lori Lalouette noting that it is imperative to keep a working bridge there.

A road and bridge area fuel bid for 5,300 gallons of diesel was awarded to Cardie Oil Inc. of Tampa for $7.840.60 over a competitive bid of $7,989.00 from Cooperative Grain & Supply of Hillsboro.

The commissioners agreed to renew a second five-year term as a state opportunity zone to attract young people out of the area in programs that would finance them while allowing tax forgiveness.

Emergency Medical Services Director Ed Debesis reported 110 ambulance calls for June including 19 transfers, six cardiac, 40 medical emergency, three standby, two standby, two motor vehicle and off road accidents, 16 falls, 23 no transport, and one 10-22.

There were 29 calls from Peabody, eight from Florence, 22 calls from Marion, 43 calls from Hillsboro, eight calls from Tampa.

The commissioners began opening sessions for budget preparation with Scot Loyd of Swindoll, Janzen, Hawk & Loyd.

They met in executive session for 10 minutes for personnel with Debesis, for 15 minutes for personnel with Appraiser Ray Cooke, and for 10 minutes by themselves with County Clerk Tina Spencer added for 10 minutes.