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Bridge updates, Rumpke deal at center of latest county government meeting

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By John Overby

The progress of two bridges that affect Washington County residents was one of the main topics of discussion during this past week’s WC fiscal court meeting.

Washington County Road Supervisor Dale Mann announced that repairs to the Walker Lane bridge were nearing completion, and the beams should be set by Friday, if not sooner.

He noted that the bypass around Walker Lane bridge has been “holding up pretty well.”

Washington County Judge/Executive John Settles then commented on the recent closing of the Fredericktown bridge, which had been a concern for citizens living near it.

He said that the bridge, which connects Washington and Nelson counties, had been closed because the water around it was so high that no one could get a good look at the structure, so it was shut down for the time being for safety concerns.

According to Settles, there is a possibility that the bridge could be reopened but with a lower weight limit, depending on the outcome of an analysis scheduled for later this week.

After that time, the cost of the repairs will be evaluated, although there is no definitive timetable for a decision to be made.

Settles observed that the fact that there is a passage only a short distance to travel to get to another passageway could factor into the decision-making process.

A proposal to extend a contract with the county through June of 2019 from Rumpke Waste and Recycling was also heard by the court. After the presentation by Rumpke municipal sales representative Laurie Probus, the request was approved.

The current agreement does not expire until July of 2014, but the county decided to agree to the contract now because of the minimal economic impact it would have on WC residents.

Residential rates will remain the same under the new deal until July of 2016, which is when “a modest increase of two percent” will be added. There will also be no fuel surcharge for residential accounts.

Commercial rates will also remain the same until July of 2016, at which time the rates could be reviewed by the county. The increase for these accounts will also not exceed two percent, but there will be a one-percent increase on fuel surcharge.

The fiscal court meeting that was planned for Nov. 11 was rescheduled for Nov. 8 due to the conflict with Veteran’s Day.

The next fiscal court meeting will be on Friday, Oct. 25.

All magistrates were present at the meeting.