Supervisors Prioritize Roads, Bridges for Repairs

Roads and bridges in Antelope County devastated by June flood waters will be repaired soon, but one in particular is a priority.

At last week’s meeting of the Antelope County Board of Supervisors, Chairman LeRoy Kerkman said the first road which needs to be fixed will be the Orchard Road bridge because of the importance of the bridge connecting Clearwater and Orchard schools. 

At the present time, the school districts will be forced, for a period of time, to use some dirt roads which isn’t a good thing.

However, to pay for road/bridge repairs, will require big dollars, more than are currently in the county’s coffers.

Brian McDonald of JEO Consulting told the supervisors a damage assessment needs to be conducted and the supervisors will then need to decide how to proceed with funding. He said if the county uses Federal Highway funds, they will be reimbursed at a later date, but they will need to “play banker” for a period of time Just how long? McDonald said it could be three to four years.

No other funding options were kicked about as it appears the Supervisors will proceed with federal funds if/when they become available.

Also at Tuesday’s meeting, Supervisors discussed whether or not to put to a vote of the people a change in county government.

Supervisors discussed, but took no action, on adopting a resolution which would place a five-person commissioner form of government on the November ballot. 

Were the item put on the ballot and approved by voters, it would eliminate control of the 24 townships, and the current board of seven supervisors would be decreased to five commissioners.

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