Tuesday, September 25, 2018
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Village considers drainage issues

Culverts could divert water away from yard

Lucille Whipple knew her house sat in a low spot in Brady when she and her late husband Eugene “Junior” Whipple moved there nearly 50 years ago.

She’s had water problems in the basement of her house on the corner of Commercial and Matthewson streets more than once but nothing like she has experienced over the past couple of years.

“I have a horrible mess in there again, with about this much silt everywhere,” Whipple said, holding her fingers about two inches apart.

Heavy rains this spring and summer have caused wash-outs down Norris Court and Harrison Street, forming a virtual lake in Whipple’s yard.

The runoff collects there, Whipple said, because the village has not provided another place for it to drain.

Whipple addressed the village board of trustees during their regular monthly meeting on Aug. 12.

She said nothing has been done since she brought the issue to the board’s attention more than a year ago.

Trustees have discussed drainage issues several times.

In March 2008, the village turned down a possible Community Development Block Grant that would have helped pay for storm sewer drains in the area of Whipple’s house.

Matching funds of $30,000 or more would have strained the village budget too much, trustees said.

In August 2008, the board again discussed possible solutions to the drainage issue using culverts but the project never got off the ground.

Village road superintendent Carla O’Dell told trustees last week the situation is worse than even she had realized.

O’Dell said runoff is washing gullies across Commercial Street on its way downhill.

O’Dell suggested installing two culverts north to south across Commercial Street and another across Matthewson to meet the state’s drainage ditch on Highway 30.

She also said a ditch along Matthewson and crowning on the street would help eliminate the problems.

Whipple said if the village would put a ditch along the street, she would plant grass and maintain the area to prevent further erosion.

O’Dell told the board it would cost roughly $5,000 to install the culverts and excavate the ditch.

“If it isn’t fixed this year, let me tell you,” Whipple said, “you’re going to be paying a lawyer on top of it.”

Board member Jeff Miller promised to get started right away.

“We’re going to fix it one way or another,” Miller said.

In other business, the village board approved temporary keno and liquor licenses in Dale Hansen’s name.

Hansen and his daughter Rhonda Hansen are taking over the lease at Shelle’s Place and need temporary license approval until the state issues a permanent one.

The Hansens will call the restaurant the Feed Bunk. They opened the business on Tuesday.

Rhonda Hansen told the trustees she would like to install a sidewalk cafe area outside the building where customers could eat meals as well as be allowed to smoke.

Trustees referred her to the planning and zoning board.

In other action, trustees:

  • learned the village is pursuing a grant through the Union Pacific Foundation for money to purchase playground equipment for a south-side park.
  • listened to a presentation by North Platte resident Robert Killham. The Lincoln County native encouraged board members to consider voting for a change from three county commissioners to five commissioners for better representation.
  • heard a report from library board member Dee Ann Birkel including positive comments she received about the summer reading program led by Jeanene Lusk and the historical display during Brady Days.