Webster-Calhoun drainage hearing set

The completion hearing for a large drainage project in Webster and Calhoun counties has been set for 1 p.m. June 17 at the Webster County Courthouse.

A hearing on additional repairs will be held immediately following at 1:30 p.m.

Landowners will be notified ahead of the hearings, said Drainage Clerk Doreen Pliner. The Webster and Calhoun County supervisors met in a joint session Tuesday to set the date.

The project in joint drainage district 70 Webster and 95 Calhoun, located southeast of Somers, ran into unexpected expenses when workers discovered a sand seam running along the bottom of much of the ditch.

At a previous informational meeting, John Milligan of MHF Engineering recommended the boards close the project with the current contractor and start a new project if they want to complete further repairs.

Calhoun County Supervisor Dean Hoag Sr. raised concerns that a ditch near land owned by Steve Peterson, of Gowrie, was never riprapped, something he said should have been done at the beginning. Riprap is rock added to the banks of a ditch to prevent erosion.

“That was not in the original specification,” said Webster County Supervisor Keith Dencklau.

Dencklau added that the area in question has been submitted as an individual drainage repair.

Hoag objected to language in the last meeting’s minutes that said the board “accepted the report.” That motion had been moved by Webster County Supervisor Mark Campbell.

Hoag said his second did not mean a final decision had been made about how to proceed.

Dencklau said nothing was set in stone. The vote was only to accept the information presented, not to determine a course of action.

Campbell moved to amend his motion to say the board “acknowledged the engineer’s tentative report.” The motion passed, with Campbell, Dencklau, Hoag, Webster County Supervisors Merrill Leffler and Bob Singer, and Calhoun County Supervisors Scott Jacobs and Gary Nicholson voting “yes.” Webster County Supervisor Clark Fletcher voted “no.”