homepage logo

Supervisors Priorized Drainage During Tuesday’s Meeting

By Staff | Sep 21, 2017

Drainage hearings were the main focus of the Palo Alto County Supervisors during their regular meeting, Tuesday, September 19.

An improvement hearing was held on Drainage District 23. 18 landowners were on hand to ask questions regarding the improvements to Rick Hopper, Drainage Engineer from Jacobson-Westergard of Estherville.

“We looked at a half-inch and a one-inch drainage coefficient and we normally do estimates for both,” Hopper explained. “Most drainage districts go with a half-inch coefficient at a minimum. This is the largest improvement done in the district. It includes improvement of the main tile and does not include the ditch.”

Estimated total cost for a half-inch coefficient is $$847,694. Based on 2,140 acres, the average cost per acre would be $396.12. This breaks down to $32 per acre per year for 20 years or $52 per acre per year for 10 years to pay for the work, if you finance through the County.

Estimated total cost for a one-inch coefficient is $1,142,230. Based on 2,140 acres, the average cost per acre would be $43 per acre per year for 20 years or $70 per acre for 10 years if you finance through the County.

“For a project of this size, we will have to do a reclassification,” Hopper said. “We have put together a rough estimate of what each person could potentially pay. This is just an estimate and it may change. This project also qualifies for a remonstrance. This means that over 50 percent of landowners owning over 70 percent of the land vote no it automatically stops the improvement.”

“Will you follow the current tile?” Marty Geelan, landowner questioned.

“Yes, we will, and we will tie into the current tile as well as any private tile,” Hopper replied.

“Will this be plastic or concrete?” Roger Williamson, landowner asked.

“It will be plastic,” Hopper responded.

“When are you talking about bid letting this project?” A meeting attendant asked.

“January or February,” Hopper explained. “That’s when you get a lot of builders because they want to fill their summer.”

With some further discussion, the Supervisors unanimously accepted the Proposed Improvement Report on DD 23 and appointed Rick Hopper as engineer. At this time they also appointed two commissioners, Bill Brown and Bill Whitney.

Don Etler, Drainage Engineer from Bolten and Menk of Spencer attended the meeting as well as eight landowners, for the completion hearing on DD 80 FEMA repairs. This damage was done during the June 2014 flooding.

“You do not have to file for crop damages unless you disagree with what we have determined,” Etler said.

Etler gave the following amounts for each area: DD 80 Upper Main – $127,222.07, Lower Main $54,982.14 and Branch F – $9,755.11.

The Supervisors unanimously accepted to pay claims as shown but to leave a window for landowners to file a claim and directed Carmen Moser, Palo Alto County Auditor to release the contractor and pay the retainment fee to the contractor in 30 days.

In final business, Joe Neary, Zoning Administrator submitted a request from PRKG 368 LLC to approve a conditional use permit to construct one 101 feet by 192 feet to house 2400 head of hogs in Independence Township Section 9.

No Master Matrix was needed and with one neighbor within a half mile, Neary talked with the occupant and he waived the half-mile setback

Unanimous approval was given.