Commissioners consider ditch requests

NEW ULM – Brown County commissioners will consider a pair of drainage ditch repair requests for County Ditch (CD) 1, Section 19, Milford Township Tuesday.

Milford Township had an area contractor excavate near the intersection of East Ballpark Street and 2nd Street in Essig to repair a CD 1 drop inlet that was not functioning, according to the Request for Board Action (RBA).

A tile problem was discovered but it was determined that it was more of a repair than the contractor wanted to do, so the tile was left exposed, the area fenced, signed for safety, and the County was called to complete the repair. Another contractor was called and the repair was made. Repair bills were $181.25 by Schaefer Well Co. and $389.50 by Heiderscheidt Digging, according to the RBA.

On July 30, 2013, commissioners reviewed repair by the first contractor. A commissioner suggested the repair should be Milford Township’s since it is in their right-of-way and the County expects the road authority to repair county tile in the road authority’s right-of-way. The RBA was tabled for more investigation.

The ditch in Essig has been repaired often, in and out of the right-of-way, as CD 1 wanders in and out of the Milford Township right-of-way in Essig, making it hard to know if a repair is in or out, according to the RBA.

With a lack of property pins in Essig, the County estimated the repair is in the 2nd Street right-of-way. State laws require highway bridges and culverts to be maintained by the road authority, but do not reference tile.

Watonwan, Redwood, Meeker, Nicollet, and Blue Earth counties were contacted to learn what their practices are for tile repair in the road right-of-way. Generally, they expect the road authority to make repairs in the right-of-way, with a few exceptions.

Commissioners will consider:

Repair requests of $947.50 for a tile washout in CD 13, Section 18, Home Township; $3,780 tile repair, CD 55, Section 17, North Star Township; and $1,380 tile and side drain repair, JD 35, Section 3, North Star Township.

A 5th District Adult Veterans Court report from Brown County Probation Director Les Schultz and Kevin Mettler of the 5th District Court. Peer mentors are needed to assist veteran’s court participants. Mentors must be military veterans, agree to a six-month minimum commitment, complete training and attend court.

Veterans Court is a problem solving court for veterans charged with misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor or felony offenses and struggling with addiction, serious mental illness and/or co-occurring disorders. The Court promotes sobriety, recovery and stability with coordinated response with traditional partners, U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs Health Care networks, the Veterans Benefits Administration, volunteer veteran mentors and veteran’s family support organizations.

Accepting a $9,777.20 low quote from Puhlmann Lumber & Design to replace 20 windows on the north and west side of the Family Services area of the Community Services Building. Existing windows installed in 1953 are drafty and poorly insulated, according to the RBA. Project funds are in the 2013 Government Buildings budget.

County board budget review sessions are scheduled for 9 a.m., Monday, Aug. 19, 1 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 21, and 9:30 a.m., Thursday, Aug. 22 in courthouse room 204.

The county board meeting starts at 9 a.m. Tuesday in the commissioner’s room.

Fritz Busch can be e-mailed at

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