The Times - Serving Waitsburg, Dayton and the Touchet Valley

By Michele Smith
The Times 

Busy Season Ahead for Columbia Co. Projects

Crews have begun maintenance; several road projects are slated for this summer


February 15, 2018

DAYTON--Warmer, milder weather is going to allow county crews to start spring maintenance, earlier than usual, said Public Works Director Andrew Woods at last week’s meeting of the Columbia County Commissioners.

County crews are to begin digging ditches, cleaning culverts, cutting brush, and applying herbicide to the shoulders of paved roads in the next few weeks.

Road grading has begun in the north part of the county, which is pretty typical, Woods said.

He said the county is going to purchase dry calcium chloride and use county labor to apply it, in place of magnesium chloride, as used in years past. “We want to try a couple of roads and see, do we save costs, or not.”

While there are additional costs to the county, county residents can call the Public Works Department to be placed on a list for that application.

Bidding will begin for contracts for rock crushing, for a second rock rake for crews to use on the bigger roads, and for chemicals for county road needs, along with use at the fairgrounds and golf course.

Woods said the county needs a new sand shed, because some cracked timbers are causing damage up into the trusses. “It has done its duty. It’s been there a long time,” he said.

Replacing the old sand shed with a standard metal building, which will be a little more than twice the size of the current shed, will cost around $125,000. Funds have mostly been identified for that.

The county is wrapping up plans for the South Touchet Road Project, with a few minor tweaks. Construction should begin in the middle of June. The public can expect 10 to 15-minute delays due to construction, Woods said.

Woods said work has begun on grant applications for the rural arterial program, specifically for Kellogg Hollow Road, Starbuck Bridge, Hatley Gulch Phase I and Hartsock Grade.

He is also requesting a bit less than $1 million for the proposed North Touchet Road overlay project from a Federal Lands Access Program grant. The plan is for the city of Dayton to partner with the county on that project. The overlay project will begin on S. Fourth St., from Main St, to milepost 7.2 on the North Touchet Road.

Woods said $86.5% of the $1.8 to $2 million project will come from those federal dollars. The city and county will share the other 13.5%. Project management will stay with the county.

The state has obligated PE funds and is moving forward with the Whetstone bridge project on Highway 12. Woods plans to meet with the representatives from the state to ask if the state can perform additional work.

Action was taken by the BOCC at that meeting to approve:

Certification of the 2018 Road Levy and Estimated Revenue Produced.

Resolution 2018-03, authorizing minor updates to the Planning Commission Rules and Procedures.

Resolution 2018-04, authorizing the Public Works Director to solicit bids and award a contract through the small works roster to install ventilation fans and a heating/cooling system in the weigh shack at the transfer station with an estimated project cost of $15,000.

Resolution 2018-05, authorizing the purchase and installation of a new dispatch console in the county’s dispatch center in the estimated amount of $190,000.

Resolution 2018-06, authorizing the Public Works Director to solicit bids and award a contract for replacement of the dispatch center carpet and furniture installation at the two dispatch consoles. The estimated cost is $40,000.

Resolution 2018-07, authorizing the Public Works Director to solicit bids and award a contract for installation of bullet-resistant paneling, partitions and doors in the office of the Clerk of the Superior Court. The estimated cost of the project is $25,000.

Resolution 2018-08, adopting the Washington State Department of Transportation Standard Specifications for Road, Bridge, and Municipal Construction, 2018 Edition.

Approved the 2018 Community Wildlife Protection Plan.

Approved the 2018 Fairgrounds Facilities Fee Schedule and the 2018 Touchet Valley Golf Course Fees. Copies are available for inspection at the Columbia County Office during regular business hours.


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