KOSCIUSKO — Kosciusko Commissioners approved a professional service agreement between Kosciusko Commissioners and Cardno, Walkerton, at their meeting held Tuesday, May 1.
County Highway Superintendent Scott Tilden submitted the agreement, explaining that it pertains to wetland mitigation for the Kosciusko County bridge 18 project, on CR 300N over the Tippecanoe River, and has a fixed fee amount of $48,000.
John Richardson, senior consultant from Cardno, attended the meeting to answer questions. When commissioners inquired if $48,000 was the total cost for everything, Richardson explained that it would cover construction, first year planting and monitoring.
“Then there is an annual monitoring and maintenance cost,” Richardson stated.
Commissioners asked how long the monitoring and maintenance contract goes on, with Richardson responding, “Unfortunately, ten years.”
“Any wild guess on total cost?” asked Commissioner Brad Jackson.
“It’s about $5,000 per year, so a total cost over the ten period of close to $100,000,” Richardson replied.
“No offense to you,” said Jackson, “But that is the biggest waste of money.”
Commissioner Vice-President Cary Groninger asked if wetland will be created somewhere else to make up for what will be impacted by the bridge project, referencing the federal law based on the Clean Water Act of 1977 which states that anyone who impacts wetlands over a tenth of an acre is required to do mitigation.
Richardson answered in the affirmative, stating, “We’re going to do that at the old Little Bighorn Golf Course. Mr. Custer is hosting this mitigation.”
“Commissioners are still responsible for the mitigation,” said Richardson, “but Cardno is taking it as turn-key with Dale Custer and basically taking care of that for you.”
“This has been included in the budget,” said Tilden. “We found out about three years ago that we would have to go through the wetland mitigation – it will come out of the accumulated bridge fund.”
“I’m looking for a motion to approve the mitigation for bridge 18,” said Commissioner President Bob Conley.
“I’ll begrudgingly make a motion to approve this,” Jackson responded, eliciting laughter from those in attendance.
“And I’ll begrudgingly second that,’ Groninger added.
Tilden said work will begin in that area this month.
Commissioners approved two requests by County Administrator Marsha McSherry. The first was approval of a bid from Ranger Materials, Warsaw, in the amount of $8,927 for sealing and patching of three area parking lots, including the Munson Building lot, the Old Jail Museum lot and the lot at Kosciusko County Work Release.
McSherry also requested approval of a proposal from Butt & Timmons in the amount of $9,654 for construction work to the exterior stairways and side walls of the courthouse.
“This is over my spending limit of $7,500 so it requires your approval,” said McSherry.
- Pierceton resident Jerome Keener was recognized as veteran of the month.
- County Veteran Affairs Officer Rich Maron informed commissioners that a Kosciusko Honor & Remember event will be held in conjunction with Warsaw’s First Friday to honor military men and women in our county who served during the Vietnam era. The four-day event will begin May 31. All activities will be focused downtown near the Vietnam Wall and in the city plaza. For further information about this event, please contact Ken Locke at (574) 268-7697 or Paula Bowman at (574) 376-0223.
- The next regular meeting will be held at 9 a.m. Tuesday, May 15.