State Funds Being Pulled For Turkey Creek Measuring Station

State Funds Being Pulled For Turkey Creek Measuring Station
Gage County Emergency Management Coordinator, Lisa Wiegand

BEATRICE – Southeast Nebraska may be losing state funding for one of the automated river level recording stations, located not far from Beatrice.

Gage County Emergency Management Coordinator Lisa Wiegand says a notice from state officials indicates funding will no longer be allocated after the end of this year, to a measuring station on Turkey Creek.

:20                  “deem it, necessary”

Currently, the National Weather Service reports measurements of river levels, either through automated or manual readings, at Crete, Wilber, De Witt, Beatrice, Barneston and Marysville, Kansas…along the Big Blue River.

At issue is about $30,000.  Wiegand says the Turkey Creek gauge provides readings of flooding and flood back-up water from the nearby Big Blue.

Wiegand says Jefferson and Saline Counties Emergency Management Coordinator John McKee has met with De Witt officials, on the state’s announcement.

:29                  “not important”

Wiegand said the gauge site is extremely important for Dewitt and for Beatrice. Wiegand says she’s not sure what is included in the $30,000 cost cited by the state.

Wiegand said this past Saturday, an action plan was put in place in Beatrice through Monday, because of elevated river levels…following rainfall of three to four inches.  However, the river level on the Big Blue has been subsiding, in the past couple of days.

The prolonged rainy weather has been a bit rough on some gravel roads in Gage County.  Board of Supervisors Chairman Myron Dorn said he’s been getting some questions about road conditions following several days of rain.  One example is South 82nd Road, in the northern part of the county.

:19                  “startin’ to show up”

Highway Superintendent Galen Engel says each county grader operator, in good conditions, can work about five to seven miles of roadway, per day.  Each operator handles about 40-to-45 miles, in the county.  But, they also need more favorable weather, to finish work.  Grader operators work hours between seven a.m. and 3:30 p.m.

Officials today discussed putting an extra operator on duty from a highway department dirt crew, to help with the grading work, in light of recent, wet weather.

Meanwhile, county officials said today that some work to fix a bad three-mile asphalt stretch of the Holmesville Road east of Beatrice, tentatively will begin next Monday. Milling and armor coating work is planned.  The three miles of road gets pounded by heavy truck traffic from a nearby quarry, which has created deep valleys where water can cause a hazardous traffic condition.

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