Effort to replace Davison County signs advancesDavison County will take another step this year toward the eventual upgrade of all its road signs.
By: Anna Jauhola, The Daily Republic
Davison County will take another step this year toward the eventual upgrade of all its road signs.
The final round of ordering will soon be completed, county commissioners were told Tuesday.
The Federal Highway Administration mandated a new level of retroreflectivity for signs in 2009 for all public roadways to make traffic signs more visible at night. A retroreflector is a device or surface that reflects light back to its source with a minimum scattering of light.
Highway Superintendent Rusty Weinberg told the Davison County Commission that the Highway Department has been replacing signs throughout the county over the last three years. The total cost of replacing all signs to comply with the national mandate is $300,000. Weinberg said he budgeted for $75,000 per year just for signs, posts and hardware from 2009 to 2012.
All signs will be installed by 2013.
Weinberg said neighboring counties may not get retroreflectivity signage ordered or installed until 2018 or 2020.
“This will be our last year spending $75,000 on signs, then we can drop it back to the $25,000 to $30,000 range,” he said.
The commission opened bids for the new signage during its Tuesday meeting. Three companies placed bids.
Weinberg also presented bids for asphalt, dust control, gravel crushing, crack sealant, concrete and metal culverts, guard rails and bridge construction.
The commission tabled all the bids until its March 27 meeting. Weinberg will review the bids and make his recommendations then.
Weed Supervisor John Geidel presented bids from two companies for weed and pest chemicals.
The commission also tabled those bids until next week so Geidel can review them and give recommendations.
In other business, the commission:
• Approved a resolution to support the town of Ethan’s effort to obtain a Safe Routes to School grant. The grant will allow the town to create a crosswalk and install flashing lights from the parking lot to the school to make a safer walking and biking environment around the building. The commission signed a letter of support to be sent to the city.
• Set wages for two summer positions — weed sprayer at $11.50 per hour and water hauler at $8.50 per hour. The sprayer position has been filled and the commission approved advertising for the water hauler position.
• Heard an annual report from Register of Deeds Debra Young, who said her department was “in the hole” in 2011 for the “first time since 1997.” The department spent $3,167.54 more than its budget. Young also said her department is working to digitize all its records. This year, the department has been able to scan in more than 18,000 pages with the help of interns. Plus, the county makes money from selling the documents to Davison County Title Company. Young informed the commission of her work on developing a software system to digitally record all plats.
The office started using the software in January and has yet to pay for anything as Young is helping develop it, she said.
• Approved a request for Hands Across the Courthouse by Mike Dittmer of Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA). Hands Across the Courthouse is in conjunction with April’s Child Abuse Awareness Month. Third- and fourth-graders at Mitchell Christian School will trace their hands onto paper and hang them in the Davison County Courthouse in April.