County approves snowplow purchase

Isanti County Board
At the Feb. 2 regular meeting, the Isanti County Board approved the
$186,000 purchase of a new snowplow truck for the Highway Department.

Greg Hunt
[email protected]

At the Feb. 2 regular meeting, the Isanti County Board approved the $186,000 purchase of a new snowplow truck for the Highway Department.

Highway Engineer Richard Heilman explained the need for the 2011 International tandem snowplow, with older trucks in the county’s fleet reaching high miles and hours of usage. Two older trucks are kept for back-up and were employed this busy snow-removal season when younger trucks needed maintenance. The new truck will arrive mid-summer and be ready for the 2011-12 winter season.

The board also approved right-of-way payments to residences along Co. Rd. 45 from Co. Rd. 19 north to Xylite St. NE. The payments will cover land needed to widen that road—a busy stretch which takes traffic to Cambridge Middle School. Heilman reminded the board this will be a two-year project which will allow the fill work to settle this year on the soft peat areas of the ditches.

Payments range from a high of $16,600 to a low of $500 for 11 residences in the work area, with the total coming to $79,100.

Heilman also updated the board on a Co. Rd. 9 improvement project between Co. Rd. 45 and Co. Rd. 18, planned for the 2012 construction season.

Parks projects for 2011
Parks Director Barry Wendorf received approval for several projects to improve the county’s parks this year. Boardwalks with an elevated viewing platform will be built at the Irving & John Anderson Park, with a low bid of $81,600 received from MN Boardwalk of Arlington, Minn.

A log-style picnic shelter will be built at Vegsund County Park northwest of Stanchfield (similar to the shelter completed last year at Anderson Park). The low bid for that project was $18,000 from Evergreen Log Homes of Princeton. The county will be reimbursed up to 75 percent of the total cost of both projects through the state’s Parks Legacy Grant Program.

In addition, Wendorf received approval to spend $23,900 out of the 2011 Special Projects budget for professional buckthorn removal at Vegsund Park. Services provided by low-bidder Applied Ecological Services of Prior Lake will cover 1 1/2 years of removal process of the invasive species.

Wendorf also updated the board on the fantastic volunteer support his office received last year. A total of 211 volunteers helped Isanti County

Parks for a total of 1,136 hours (a savings to the county of $14,774 @ $13/hour estimated labor rate).

Volunteer projects on the 2011 calendar are the following:
— March 26– Boardwalk construction at Anderson Park
— Earth Day April 30– Rain garden construction at Springvale Park
— June 4– Burr oak planting at Becklin Homestead Park
— Aug. 6– Chimney swift tower construction at Anderson Park

In other action, the Board:
— Approved the following personnel hirings: Lynette Guderian and Tiffany Cahoe as financial workers for Family Services; Richard Finley as full-time jailer for Sheriff’s Office.