Martin Co. plans improvement

FAIRMONT — Martin County commissioners on Tuesday heard from County Engineer Kevin Peyman, who provided a review of a proposed courthouse parking lot improvement.

The project will include the installation of about 275 feet of curb, 275 feet of fencing and the installation of a drainage system. Commissioners approved the project last August.

“We’re looking at taking out the cable fencing and the posts that are falling apart back there,” Peyman said. “Instead we’ll be putting in a curb and gutter section in there.”

He noted that commissioners can decide if they want to include fencing.

“The curb and gutter will be a couple of feet forward from where the edge of the blacktop is now,” Peyman said. “The plan is for the highway department to come in and mill a clean edge and get that prepped.”

He also mentioned the use of three spillways that will be utilized to contain as much water as possible, rather than have it all run down the bank into Sisseton Lake.

“We’re doing a kind of rain garden behind that curb and gutter,” Peyman said. “We’re still finalizing what size we can fit back there, but right now I think it will be a concrete box with concrete walls with some planting, rocks and tile on the bottom. The plan is to catch as much water as you can and have it filtered out through the rocks and absorbed.”

He noted that parking for the courthouse will be affected for about a three-week stretch once work begins.

Turning to another matter, Peyman briefly addressed the weather, as yet another snowstorm hit the area on Tuesday.

“Nothing good comes from plowing in this weather,” he stated. “The shoulders are soft, the gravel [roads] are soft. You can’t plow like you normally do because if the plow hits the shoulders at all, they’re so soft that the plow just digs in, so it’s a lot harder to plow in this weather.”

Commissioner Dan Schmidtke noted that another danger is people who push snow out of their driveways into the roads.

“The graders come by and the roads look nice, and here comes a guy cleaning out his driveway but he’s too lazy to turn around and push it up in his yard, and it leaves these lumps all over the road,” he said. “That’s a terrible danger to vehicles.”

Peyman responded that the highway department attempts to address the issue via phone calls or letters, and notes that while some people stop doing it, others do not.

“I send a standard letter that talks about liability issues that they could have, and that it’s illegal to deposit snow on the road, but some just don’t care,” he said.

In other action, the board:

o Approved Grant Carlson of Trimont for the position of seasonal county parks caretaker. Carlson will begin his duties around April 16, and will continue for six months.

o Authorized advertising for the recruitment of an investigator position for the Martin County Sheriff’s Office.