City, County Officials to Work on Lighting, Cameras at Joint Drop Off Site
The Nemaha County Commissioners will work with Auburn city officials on cameras and improved lighting at the unwanted furniture and appliance drop off site.
Larry Holtzman, Auburn City Councilman, asked the commissioners Wednesday, July 14, about the camera system and improved lighting. He said that the camera system would help in prosecuting illegal dumping. Holtzman said a lot of illegal items have been deposited at the site, that problem has happened weekly and that items were being placed outside the fence. He said if officials find identification with personal refuse, the police are notified because that is the only way to control the issue. Holtzman said city officials want to keep the site as clean as possible and that some items were difficult to dispose of. The commissioners said they had seen fewer appliances and couches in ditches because of the drop off site in south Auburn.
Allan Adams, representing the Peru Dike District, told the commissioners about three places where the county road crossed the levee where the roads are eroded or low because of natural traffic, deterioration and grading. Adams asked that the county road crews stop grading on those roads. Corps of Engineers officials did their last inspection late last summer and recommended that the crossings be built back up to the level of the rest of the levee. The affected areas were: 644 Avenue, 645 Avenue and Olive Street east of Peru to the boat ramp, where the water ran higher first. Adams said that it was the dike district representatives’ responsibility to oversee the levee and the corps wanted it done.
Adams also said a tube on a bridge north of Peru needed an eight to 10 foot extension to the channel. He said underneath the bridge it was silted which blocked the flow of water. He requested that a tube be installed on the south side of the bridge. Adams said that an 18-inch tube would be sufficient. It was agreed to consider that work after the area dried out, perhaps this fall. Adams said that multiple ditches needed cleaning out and that he was willing to do the work himself if given permission, to save county officials money. The commissioners needed to study that issue and discussed visiting with their road consultant on the issue. Adams said the ditches needing attention covered two to three miles, but no work can be done until the crops are out of the fields. Officials will keep in touch on the issue.
Roger Kuhn told the commissioners that he had requested bridge repair on Honey Creek Road, County Road 730, since January. Kuhn said that the bridge’s closing caused problems with access to his property. The commissioners said that they had limited funding for bridge repair, and that many roads and bridges that needed repair were on heavily traveled roads. Plans were to consult with the bridge consultant and contact the road foreman.
T.O. Davison requested that a letter be sent to Nebraska Department of Revenue officials regarding establishments collecting lodging tax. Davison said that members of the county visitors committee asked who paid what lodging tax, and that everyone who had lodging had to pay tax but not all did so. The lodging tax was evenly split between the County Visitors Improvement Fund and the County Visitors Promotion Fund. The commissioners discussed that they were unsure whether they can become involved with the issue since the lodging tax was not subject to the Freedom of Information Act. Nebraska Department of Revenue officials will be contacted.
Sandy Morrissey, director, regional prevention programs, praised the work of Nemaha County representatives with prevention efforts. She commended the commissioners for their support in that area.
Morrissey said officials are at a turning point with prevention block grant dollars. She expressed concerns that representatives of smaller counties would not obtain funding and that officials of such counties were encouraged to work together. Morrissey talked about Take a Stand, which had three priorities: targeting underage drinking, binge drinking, and drinking and driving. Representatives wanted to develop strategies to target binge drinking, especially among persons ages 18-25, she said.
“The foundation that we’ve built over the last six years is where we want to be. Social change is slow,” Morrissey said.
She said that officials of Auburn and Johnson-Brock Public Schools want to continue the Drug Resistance Abuse Education (DARE) program.
“There’s value and other schools want to use it. DARE is accepted nationally because it helps with change,” Morrissey said.
She praised youth leadership. Morrissey said 270 persons attended June Jam, making it the highest attendance ever at that event. Morrissey said a goal is to have day camps for youth with emotional and behavioral issues. She said that Nemaha County could have a great pilot program to model June Jam.
The commissioners approved an OPPD permit for Jeff Becker for a single-phase underground crossing, seven miles south and one mile east of Julian.
Janice Boden, Davison and Mary Kruger were reappointed to four-year terms on the Nemaha County Visitors Committee. The terms of Boden and Davison expired in June 2010. Kruger’s term expired in July 2010.