Friday, July 19, 2024
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Overton Adding Highway Dept. Equipment For Ice Storm Cleanup

Overton County will use money left over from the new county building for new highway department equipment.

County Executive Ben Danner said that roughly $300,000 will be used to purchase new vehicles and mini-excavators. Danner said this is focused on the ice storm cleanup, with the county taking a different approach than it did in 2015.

“We borrowed $1.3 million and hired crews to come in and clean that debris up,” Danner said. “Which that’s a 3-4 year process to get our money back. So James Norrod the Highway Superintendent said he’s willing to pick up the brush for the county and we’ll still get reimbursed from FEMA but we won’t have to borrow money up front.”

Danner said that there is still brush to pick up on nearly every road in the county. Danner said originally there was a plan to use federal COVID relief money for the highway department, but found out the highway department was ineligible for those dollars.

“I brought up that we can go ahead and buy equipment for the highway department,” Danner said. “That way we can have enough stuff to get the debris picked up for the public. We won’t have to put it 3-4 years down the road on taxpayers to worry about getting money back from FEMA.”

Danner said there had been other considerations for using the left over county building money.

He said that included renovations to the ambulance services building and loan repayment for the building. However, Danner said that loan has a low interest rate.

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