Minor changes made to farm-to-market road system

Board of Supervisors
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     Jones County’s farm-to-market road system will see some changes, but minor in nature.

     Jones County Engineer Derek Snead and Assistant Engineer Todd Postel provided an update on the FM system to the board of supervisors at their March 16 board meeting.

     Changes to the Jones County FM system were reviewed by a state commission and approved.

     Snead said roughly 34 percent of the county roads throughout the State of Iowa are considered FM roads. Jones County’s portion covered about 37 percent of the county roads here.

     Each year, the state allocates about $1 million for the FM system throughout Iowa for various construction projects. The allocation each county receives is based on several factors, including total miles.

     “Our goal was to get our average (percentage) closer to the state’s,” Snead said.

     FM roads must connect to other FM to maintain connectivity.

     In total, 19 changes were made to the Jones County FM system, some roads removed from the list, others added. The changes take Jones County’s total FM miles to about 36 percent.

     “It’s not a large change,” noted Snead. “We reduced our (FM) miles by a mile and a half.”

     Snead added that the large majority of the FM miles the county is allocated for remains unchanged.

     “Our paved surface mileage decreased slightly,” continued Snead. “Our granular surface mileage decreased, too.”

     However, Snead anticipates an increase in FM funding, despite the reduction in miles.

     Postel said the last time they updated the FM system in Jones County was back in the late 1990s.

     “They’ve been on us for a while to update it,” he said.    

In other county business:

     • Snead informed the supervisors about an update to the Secondary Road drug and alcohol policy, which the board will take action on at their next meeting.

     The DOT is requiring positive test results for those holding a CDL (commercial driver’s license) to be shared in a database to be used by perspective employers.

     • John Klein, chair of the county’s Safety Committee, discussed future committee projects with the supervisors.

     Several projects are in the committee’s wheelhouse such as updating all outdated AEDs and first aid kits in county vehicles and county facilities. Klein said there are some grants available for such purchases, but the committee is looking into the best AEDs that are also compliant with what are used with county ambulance services.

     The board of supervisors set aside $10,000 for FY 2021 and another $10,000 for FY 2022 for use by the Safety Committee.

     Klein said they’re working on a project priority list so they know just how much funding may be needed. He said the list will be presented to the board before any purchases and decisions are made.

     • County Attorney Kristofer Lyons asked the board to approve an amended 28E agreement concerning the five-county victim witness coordinator/SART assistant position.

     The original 28E included language about creating a separate board of county attorneys to run the funding through. The county members agreed to allow the funding to run through Clayton County, the employer of record.

     The board approved the 28E.

     • The board approved a notice to bidders, setting a letting date of April 13 for the resurfacing of 75th Avenue near Cascade.

     Snead informed the board that the project would get extended to involve the City of Cascade.


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