Supervisors discuss county ATV policy

The Webster County Board of Supervisors approved a purchase agreement for the purchase of land to be used for youth hunting programs.

The purchase includes a 75.4 acre parcel of land in Newark Township purchased for $75,400 from the Donald Seltz family.

The land will be used to mentor local youths on hunting and trapping techniques, Webster County Conservation Director Matt Cosgrove said.

The cost of the purchase will be covered by funds from the local and state Pheasants Forever chapters and the Webster County Conservation Land Acquisition Trust Fund.

Donald Sells said the land acquisition process has been in the process for more than a year.

“It has been about a year and a half,” said Sells. “I saw this as something that could be very beneficial and I am very proud to finally see it put together.”

Also considered and approved was the transfer of an unexpended balance of $38,726.85 from the conservation department’s general budget of 2012-2013 to the Conservation Trust Fund to be used for capital improvement projects.

Cosgrove said the use of grants to help fund conservation projects throughout the year resulted in the surplus.

“It’s not typical for us to always have this kind of a balance left at the end of the year,” said Cosgrove.

The board also approved a request to transfer $5,593 of the Conservation Reserve Program funds for Miller Marsh to the Conservation Trust Fund to be used for land acquisition.

Also approved were three agreements for NEW Cooperative for upgrades to facilities in Roelyn, Lanyon and Barnum, and heard an update on the Community Development Block Grant and FEMA grants for an ongoing acquisition of flood damaged properties.

Shirley Helgevold, local assistance manager for MIDAS Council of Governments said the entire acquisition process is nearly complete and that $138,200 in Community Development Block Grants and $783,200 in FEMA dollars were used in the project for a total of $921,400 spent on the process.

“We have acquired and demolished nine properties,” said Helgevold. “All we have left to complete is the final paperwork.”

Also discussed was a proposed ATV usage ordinance for Webster County.

Supervisor Mark Campbell said the ordinance would allow the off highway vehicles to be operated on granular surface roads in Webster County. Cori Coleman, Webster County attorney said the ordinance follows several state codes. Webster County Engineer Randy Will said ATVs used for farming purposes may be allowed to cross non granular roads only to travel from one farm to another. All ATVs used for recreational purposes must be licensed and insured.

“This appears to be a clean ordinance with a lot of state codes involved,” said Coleman. “When it is rolled out people need to be made aware of those state codes. It is limited by state code who can operate the vehicles.”