227th Ave. road work drags on in Linwood

Alice Pickering
Linwood Reporter

Linwood Town Board supervisors took action on Tuesday, Aug. 14 to get the reconstruction of 227th Ave. completed. The project has been in the works since March.

Town Board Chair Mike Parker is upset that a project which originally should have taken about three weeks has not been completed.

Dirtworks, Inc. will be completing the project at a cost of $19,800.

Don Anderson and Bob Beckman were originally hired to make the improvements at a per-hour rate. Contacted later, Beckman said that he and Anderson were hired on an oral agreement. Beckman said he has satisfactorily completed other projects in the West Martin Lake area under the same terms.

Part of the project was removing trees in the right-of-way. Beckman said he, Anderson, and Supervisor Phil Osterhus marked trees located within three or four feet of the road to cut. One property owner, however, wanted to keep a large oak near the edge of the road.

Beckman said the property owner said Osterhus told him that the board would try to save the tree. Trees were marked with ribbons. Beckman later checked the area and found the ribbon removed from one particular oak tree. He replaced it and later found it had been removed a second time.

Osterhus said he told Beckman and Anderson to complete the north side while the board worked on the problem with the tree. At the meeting July 10, supervisors voted unanimously to leave the tree and a stop-order was placed on the work.

Beckman recalled an earlier memorandum from Attorney Gerald Randall. In it, Randall said that trees in the road right-of-way can be cut.

The board acted on a memorandum from Town Engineer Craig Jochum who solicited three quotes from contractors. Two submitted quotes. Dirtworks, Inc. was the lowest at $19,800.

Joe Dolphy, a former supervisor, asked the board if they referred to the original engineering plans for the roads in the West Martin Lake neighborhood. He said the township could save money rather that having the engineering work done again.

On August 14, Beckman wanted to know why the project was being given to someone else. He wanted to know why he had not been asked for a quote. He estimated it would take about a week to finish the actual road work, though the restoration and seeding would take more time.

The board agreed to allow Beckman to complete the project. He requested three days to study plans and check the specifications before deciding to accept the job. If he chooses not to accept the job, Dirtworks, Inc. will get the nod.

Terms include completing the work in 21 days after acceptance. The vote was 5-0.

Beckman has since decided not to take the contract. Asked about his decision he said there has been “no communication” with town officials. “It’s not the way we usually do things,” he said.

Candidate Night

A “Meet the Candidates” event has been scheduled for 7 p.m., Monday Oct. 15, at the Linwood Senior Center. The Senior Advisory Board is sponsoring the forum.

This will be an opportunity for residents to direct questions to the candidates. Rich Gabrick will serve as moderator.

Tuesday, Aug. 14 was the last day to file for office. Three supervisors will be elected in November.

Candidates for Seat B are Philip Osterhus (incumbent) and Jeffrey Schipper.

Mike Parker (incumbent) and Carol Searing are candidates for Seat C.

Three candidates have filed for Seat E; Michael Budde (incumbent), Edward Kramer and Mark Olson.

Two candidates have filed for Township Clerk. Judy Hanna (incumbent) and Sandra Mishler filed for clerk. All are four-year terms.

Other Business

In other business, the board:

•Approved payment of the bills in the amount of $23,217.94 by a vote of 5-0.