WALKER -- The Cass County Board took a first look Tuesday at County Engineer David Enblom's proposal to cut the number of county road maintenance garages from six to four.
Enblom said the only change to services might be an additional 10-minute drive from the current garages to proposed new sites.
Besides the main garage and office in Walker, the county currently has maintenance garages in Cass Lake, Hackensack, Pine River, Pillager, Longville and Remer.
The proposal is to consolidate the Longville and Remer garage to a new site somewhere around the Highway 84 and 200 junction and to consolidate the Hackensack and Pine River garages to a new site along Highway 371 somewhere north of Pine River.
Enblom said some of the county garages are getting older and will either need extensive improvement or replacement in coming years. He said the consolidation likely would enable cutting one piece of equipment and one driver in the two new sites.
The county will offer for sale to townships and cities within the county four tandem trucks with about 150,000 miles on them. If not sold to those government agencies, the trucks will be offered for sale to the public at auction.
Enblom said, because the county bought several trucks in one year about seven years ago and because an effort is now being made to develop a truck rotation, these trucks are being phased out of the county fleet at a lower mileage rate than normal.
The board authorized Enblom to seek bids to buy a propane tank for the highway department facility in Walker and to seek bids for gas to fill the tank.
Enblom said the county had been on a lease agreement with Ferrell Gas to keep the tank for that facility filled, but Monday, on the coldest day so far this year, the tank ran out, leaving the Walker garage and offices temporarily without heat.
The board approved a resolution to support Crooked Lake Township's effort to negotiate with MnDOT a new, safer access to Highway 6 for the township's proposed new fire hall.
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