Mike Motz, Sidney Sun-Telegraph
The Cheyenne County Board of Commissioners met on Tuesday, February 21, and discussed a few topics, approved an application for a Floodplain Development Permit, and approved two replats for subdivisions in Cheyenne County.
The Floodplain/Floodway Development permit was approved at the L-17E bridges over I-80 in Lodgepole and the I-80 bridges over Cow Creek. All three commissioners approved without objection.
The first replat was for Tract 1, patch of Heaven Subdivision, and expanded Tract 1A from 5.30 acres to 13.23 acres, without objection from any commissioner.
The second replat was for a subdivision to be re-zoned from Agricultural to Residential. The subdivision is located at the Southwest Quarter of Section 10, Township 126 north, Range 51 West of the 6th P.M. in Cheyenne County. The change was approved without objection.
Finally, Sheriff Adam Frerichs and Highway Superintendent Doug Hart addressed the commissioners about road closures due to the extreme weather the county had been experiencing this winter. Frerichs noted county roads 77, 115 and 116 being problem areas due to the heavy snowfall. He also discussed barricades used to indicate a closed road, and that the road department did not have enough to cover every road needed. Frerichs noted that several drivers had been cited for driving on closed roads, but the
first of these citations issued was thrown out of court due to lack of signage and that Google Maps showed the road was open. Frerichs said that they had put in an application back in December to enable a county administrator to update Google with road closures to ensure the information provided by Google Maps was accurate, but has not heard back from the company as of yet.
Highway Superintendent Doug Hart then spoke about the challenges of not having enough equipment to effectively clear the roads, and talked about purchasing another loader. The commissioners weighed whether or not it would be more cost effective to contract out additional loaders from local companies or private citizens when necessary. Commissioner Miller noted that the over $100,000 cost for a new loader is a big price to pay considering that this winter's snowfall has been unusually high, and not normally needed. The commissioners decided to study the issue of hiring private contractors versus buying a new loader more closely before making a decision.
During the public comment period, Eric Pool addressed the commissioners about whether or not they supported the EPIC Consumption Tax plan championed by State Senator Steve Erdman. The bill basically eliminates Nebraska taxes with sales taxes, giving property owners relief while ensuring that all citizens pay a fair share of taxes. The commissioners listened to Pool, and agreed to study the matter further.