County discusses payment of Linn Co. Haz-Mat bill

Board of Supervisors
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     A hazardous materials cleanup incident stemming from July 2017 in Monticello prompted County Attorney Kristofer Lyons to speak about the matter with the Jones County Supervisors during their Jan. 22 board meeting.

     Linn County’s Regional Hazardous Materials Response Team was on scene that day on E. First Street in Monticello to conduct the cleanup efforts. Lyons said Linn County is now invoicing Jones County for the costs incurred because they have been unsuccessful in collecting the bill from the “person who caused the problem.” (The person is question was a tenant in a downtown apartment complex.) The tenant inside the apartment caused a formaldehyde spill.

     Emergency Management Coordinator Brenda Leonard said the bill totals $1,359. Lyons said the county is the fallback in a situation like this because the county contracts with Linn County for hazmat cleanup.

     He outlined two courses of action the supervisors could take:

     • File a lien against the property owner

     • Add the cost onto the court filings against the tenant for committing a simple misdemeanor

     Lyons said he preferred the second option because the property owner in this case likely had no clue what was in the tenant’s possession.

     Lyons said if the court does not convict the tenant, the supervisors could always direct the payment onto the property owner as a last resort.

     “Going after the landowner is not really fair,” voiced Supervisor Lon Zirkelbach. “He wasn’t aware of what was going on.”

     Lyons agreed. “It’s not really good practice to start going after landowners.”

     The board directed Lyons to proceed with the second option in taking the person to court.

In other county business:

     Senior Dining Director Lisa Tallman presented her FY  2020 Heritage Agency on Aging funding request to the board.

     Tallman currently receives $3.09 per meal from Heritage. She is requesting $3.54, to start July 1, if approved.

     She is also asking them to approve funding for 31,253 meals. This is an increase from the 30,043 meals approved in the current fiscal year. The meals are then split into congregate (9,043) and home-delivered (22,210).

     “It’s all based on our funding and needs right now,” she said of the requested increases. “Our home-delivered meals increase and more and more ever year.”

     Tallman shared that they received $16,000 through the Dining Dollars campaign. Supervisors Ned Rohwedder said when people know their donations are staying local versus going to Heritage, it helps.

     The board approved the Heritage funding application.

     • The board approved the 2018 Weed Commissioner’s Report.

     • The board approved a temporary easement with Anamosa Chapter of Izaak Walton for property associated with the second phase of the Shaw Road project. The easement is in the amount of $315.

     • County Engineer Derek Snead spoke to the board about continuous issues with the fuel pumps at the Secondary Road/Engineer’s Office property in Anamosa. Snead said the pumps are 25 years old, when their expected lifespan is 20 to 30 years.

     He said they are reviewing options for replacement and relocation of the pumps.



Subscriber Login