Archived Story

High water costs county $350,000

Published 11:02am Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Maintenance of county roads related to high water and flood damage totaled $348,666 for 2010. Included in the dollar amount was work along 34 different county highways.

An example is work along Highway 88, northwest of Fergus Falls, which totaled $50,799 in 2010.

“Those funds were needed to raise the roadway before paving this past fall,” said County Engineer Rick West to members of the Otter Tail County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday.

At Iverson Lake, south of Fergus Falls, the county spent $50,799 on culverts and an emergency outlet near County Highway 25, on the west side of the lake. The lake is down one foot since September 2010.

The county spent $32,274 along County Highway 10, west of Elizabeth, northwest of Carlisle and also east of Elizabeth.

“A lot of work was needed to construct dikes in the ditches, on the stretch of Highway 10 east of Elizabeth,” said West. “Maintenance due to high water is not just in the spring. It’s now on a year-around basis.”

Other high-dollar maintenance areas included County Highway 118, northwest of Elizabeth, and County highway 112, in Western Township in the southwestern portion of Otter Tail County. Those projects totaled $65,050 and $31,127, respectively.

West, speaking to the county board about other high water-related issues, said the county still has close to 200,000 sandbags on hand. Sandbagging stations are located in Battle Lake, Pelican Rapids and Perham.

Last month about 20,000 additional sandbags were obtained from the city of Moorhead, at no cost. That’s because Clay County does not want to store excess bags and pay rent at warehouses.

About 10,000 of those sandbags went to the county station at Perham. Lake property owners at Little McDonald Lake, Devils Lake, Paul Lake and other area lakes are in need of sandbags. That’s because those lakes are landlocked, with no natural outlets.

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