Thursday, September 20, 2018
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County to get 2 gated crossings

LEXINGTON—If the state and the railroad want to make at-grade crossings in Dawson County safer, commissioners are all for it.

During their regular bimonthly meeting on Thursday, county board members agreed to put up temporary stop signs and yield signs at two Union Pacific Railroad crossings west of Lexington.

With federal funding, the state and railroad are working together to put lights and gates at the crossings on both Road 439 and Road 430.

County roads administrator Pat Nichols said because the project will take between 15 and 18 months to complete, the state is requesting that the county mark the crossings with stop signs or yield signs.

Commissioners agreed the cost of the signs would be minimal in comparison to the safety that crossing gates would provide.

Each crossing project could cost nearly $300,000 in federal funds to complete.

In other business, commissioners:

  • heard from sheriff Gary Reiber that the Dawson County jail was near capacity during September with an average daily population of 124.4 inmates. Capacity, he said, is 126. In his monthly crime report, Reiber said there were 1,103 calls for service with 219 new jail bookings.
  • approved a change from Maximus Inc. to MGT of America for the county’s cost allocation plan. The purpose of the contract is for identifying and recovering county general fund money spent on federal programs. A primary example is child support. The new contract is capped at $1,780 for the first three years subject to change after that. The Maximus contract was more than $7,000.
  • approved a deed of conservation easement request from the living trust of Jeff and Lori Anderson to Wetlands American Trust Inc., a supporting organization of Ducks Unlimited. Land involved is 354 acres along the Platte River southwest of Lexington.
  • asked county surveyor Jake Ripp to request installation and set-up fees be waived before purchasing a large-format copier/scanner for his office. Ripp said he budgeted $25,000 for the equipment and wants the county to purchase it from A&D Technical Supply of Kearney for $18,810 but set-up fees would bring the total to more $19,950. If Ripp cannot get the fees waived, commissioners told him to look into other price quotes.