Derecho debris removal to wrap up in Jones County

Board of Supervisors
By: 
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     County Engineer Derek Snead updated the Jones County Supervisors on the continued cleanup efforts stemming from the Aug. 10 derecho.

     B&J Hauling and Excavating were hired to do the debris removal across the county. The storm mainly affected the southern portion of Jones County, including Anamosa.

     “A very large majority of the removal is complete,” noted Snead.

     The engineer’s initial estimate for cubic yards of material was around 25,000. Snead said the contract amount is looking to be around 21,300.

     “It went very well,” he reported of the removal process. “It was a difficult project.”

     He explained several of the debris locations throughout the county were hard to get to. In addition, there were a lot of hanging trees that had to come down.

     Next, a contractor hired by the state will come in and chip and grind all of the material. There will be four different sites for this portion of the project around Jones County.

     “There will be three crews working on this,” said Snead. “They’ll be able to handle it in a short amount of time.”

     The derecho also impacted numerous signs throughout the county. Snead said the first phase of this project is near competition.

     “A majority of those signs have been erected and are functional,” he said. “There will be additional costs and maintenance for some signs.”

     The original estimate for the sign project was around $190,000; it looks to be closer to $100,000.

     The debris removal and sign projects will both be submitted to FEMA for reimbursement.

In other county business:

     County Auditor Janine Sulzner reported updated from the Nov. 3 election.

     On Election Day, 4,995 ballots were cast at the polls. Of that, 1,440 were cast in Monticello, and 1,579 in Anamosa. Jones County saw 6,063 absentee ballots.

     There were nine provisional ballots overall; two were accepted and seven were rejected due to no proof of voter identification and proof of residency. One ballot was also challenged and rejected.

     • EMA Coordinator Brenda Leonard said she is working with FEMA on changes to the county’s flood map.

     For those impacted, there is a 90-day appeal process that ends on Jan. 27.

     “There’s nothing really controversial on the maps,” noted Leonard of the changes. “There’s nothing out of line.”

     Letters were previously sent to affected landowners and cities.

     • The board approved applications for Family Farm Property Tax Credit, provided by the county assessor.

     • Snead informed the board that Secondary Roads is planning for a December letting on the Lead Mine Road project.

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