The DeKalb County Commission heard an update on County Road 835, also known as Old Highway 35, during Tuesday's meeting.
Last February, the road was closed following flooding damage that caused the roadway to deteriorate. A detailed report was sent for repairs to the Alabama Department of Transportation, and state funding was approved in mid-July of 2020.
Shortly after the approval from ALDOT to proceed with work, the county was hit with the Easter Sunday floods followed by another flood a few weeks after which damaged part of the road the county road department had already repaired.
In August, the crew started the rebuild process on County Road 835 that received damages from two roadway falls.
DeKalb County Road Department Superintendent Tom Broyles said since the crew began working, they have completed the road's upper spot.
“Now we’re excavating material from the lower spot. I don’t know the exact number of loads we’ve removed from it, but it’s probably getting close to 200 loads that we’ve excavated out of it,” he said.
He said initially, they had estimated around 400 or more loads would have to come out of it, and he is unsure exactly how long that process will take.
“We are making good progress. The weather is favorable for it right now and I hope it continues to be that way,” Luther said.
Although there are many unknowns, he said he would like to get the road open back up sometime in the late fall of this year.
The commission also:
• approved the hire of John Freeman to fill the recent vacancy in the District III crew.
• approved the Speed Limit Resolutions for County Road 86, between County Road 221 and Highway 68 posted at 35 mph and County Road 88, between Lebanon and Pine Ridge posted at 40 mph.
• approved to forward the damaged claim from resident John Miller of the Kilpatrick area on County Road 480 to CRS, the county insurance carrier.
• approval to amend the FY2021 County Transportation Plan by adding three roads in District III.
County Engineer Ben Luther said the newly added roads would not utilize rebuild funds but instead would use Rebuild Alabama funds (RRR) and tipping fees from the landfill.
“I want to include them on the list, so we have one comprehensive paving plan for the next fiscal year,” he said.
• approved to adopt the annual bid awards provided to commission members in a spreadsheet format detailing awards and bids for the next fiscal year.
• approved the following jail personnel: termination of Sarah Slaton, promote Tim Smith to corrections sergeant to replace Slaton, hire Miles Underwood to replace Seth Butler who went to the academy and Jordan Leath to replace Logan Smith who also went to the academy.
• approved the following Sheriff’s Office personnel: hire Sarah McAnally as a dispatcher on an as-needed basis, transfer Hunter Akins to the Narcotics Task Force as a full time agent. Tyler Pruett is taking Akins’ position as road deputy through the recently awarded COPS Grant.
• approved to put out a boiler bid and authorized Maintenance Director Craig Shelton to begin searching for a replacement of the more than 20-year-old boiler that provides 80% of the heat to the courthouse.
DeKalb County Commission President Ricky Harcrow, District I Commission member Shane Wootten, District III Commission member Chris Kuykendall, County Administrator Matt Sharp, and County Attorney Jeff McCurdy were present during Tuesday’s meeting.
The next commission meeting is set for September 22, 2020.