Pipestone County approves agreement to share engineer

IVANHOE – Lincoln County has a county engineer as of March 1 after Pipestone County approved an agreement to share an engineer. The Lincoln County Board approved the agreement at its regular meeting on Feb. 18.

County Engineer Dave Halbersma will alternate days between the two counties, with schedule adjustments determined by circumstances. Lincoln County will pay $6,075 per month for its share of Halbersma’s salary.

Halbersma has been with Pipestone County for a total of 24 years.

At the Lincoln County Board meeting on Tuesday, the board voted to cancel an advertisement for a county engineer.

Engineer’s Assistant Dustin Hauschild informed the board that McCleod County had accepted a bid from Lincoln County to buy a used sign truck for $35,100.

Hauschild also showed the board a letter to the editor drafted by the Minnesota County Engineers Association for consideration for endorsement by county boards throughout the state. The letter advocates an increase in highway funding to be funded by a sales tax on wholesale fuel. MCEA claims the tax would cost the average consumer approximately $2 per week.

The letter is signed by John Brunkhorst, president of MCEA.

“We understand that no one wants to pay additional taxes, but we also know people are sick of potholes, narrow unforgiving roads and sitting in congestion; all of which comes at a cost to road users,” Brunkhorst said.

The board took no action at the present time.

County Emergency Manager Jeanna Sommers informed the board an ARMER emergency radio control station had been installed at the dispatch center in Brookings, S.D.

The ARMER system is a Minnesota emergency communications system, but the control station will allow state agencies to patch into South Dakota agencies’ communications networks in the Brookings area in the event of an emergency.

County Parks Director Daryl Schlapkohl informed the board the parks department had sold a surplus equipment trailer for $3,521.