County looking for money for Sulphur Springs Road

By GARY HENRY ghenry@prairiepress.net
Posted 1/27/20

The Edgar County Board approved using some of the county’s Motor Fuel Tax for preliminary engineering regarding Sulphur Springs Road during the Wednesday, Jan. 15 county board …

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County looking for money for Sulphur Springs Road

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The Edgar County Board approved using some of the county’s Motor Fuel Tax for preliminary engineering regarding Sulphur Springs Road during the Wednesday, Jan. 15 county board meeting.

“We need the money to do a study to position ourselves to ask the state for money,” said county engineer Aaron Lawson during the study session Monday, Jan. 13.

According to Lawson, the Illinois Department of Transportation hired a consultant to review all roads in the state to identify those deemed as critical sections. The only critical section found in Edgar County lies on Sulphur Springs.

Lawson sought state money before based on the critical section finding and was advised to scale back the request.

Some of the money approved for the project is to hire Civil Design, Inc.

“A significant structure is needed if we are able to realign the road,” said Lawson. “We don’t have structural expertise. We need to use a consultant for that.”

Other upcoming highway department projects include: Hiring Knight & Associates for preliminary engineering related to a safety project on the Lower Terre Haute Road; and advertising for a $1 million guardrail project with the letting in March. The guardrail project is using federal highway money.

During the report segment of the county board meeting, Jill Taylor, coordinator of the Edgar County Emergency Services and Disaster Agency, said the county’s hazard mitigation plan needs some revision.

Taylor said the county did not experience too many problems during the heavy rain Jan. 10 and Jan. 11. The exception was Brocton where the fire department wanted to sandbag one house against the high water.

“The fire chief called me,” said Taylor. “They (the department) had bags but they needed sand.”

She in turn contacted the Edgar County Highway Department and the City of Paris and those entities took sand to Brocton.

County board member Dan Bruner reported the county’s animal shelter had to euthanize only five animals during 2019. The others either found new homes or were among the 55 that went to a rescue service.

“There are 15 in the shelter now. It’s crowded, ” said Bruner. “Most of them are pit bulls, which nobody wants.”

Bruner added Rural King recently donated 400 pounds of food to the shelter.

In action items, the board appointed Nate Alexander to the Edgar County 708 Mental Health Board and accepted the resignation of Jeff Goodwin from the Edgar County Housing Authority Board.

County board chairman Jeff Voigt said Goodwin’s resignation makes the second vacancy on the housing board.

“The other letter is coming, we just don’t have it yet,” said Voigt.