The CN railroad will not tear out tracks of an abandoned spur in Cherokee right now, but the county, the city or both need to make some kind of serious offer soon if it is going to be preserved, Larry Clark, county engineer, and Larry Walker, county roads supervisor, informed the supervisors on Tuesday.
The spur line goes east from the main CN line through town, crossing Highway 59 and then going north passing Highway 3 at the bypass. Concern had been expressed at a previous supervisors meeting that loss of the railroad spur could harm Cherokee's economic development potential.
Since that time, Clark has been in contact with officials for the railroad about the possibility of transferring the spur line to either the county or the city. Also, the condition of the track has been assessed.
Clark noted that the trestle is in fairly good shape and the two highway crossings are fairly new, but the ties are in need of replacement. The cost of replacing about two miles of ties could run about $200,000.
Replacement of ties could wait until there was an industry that had plans of using the railroad spur. As far as what the railroad would charge for the line, the talks haven't gotten that far.
Ron Wetherell, supervisor, said it would be good if the railroad would accept a tax credit for donating the spur line.
Larry and Larry's presentation to the supervisors had followed a presentation by Dave and Dave.
Dave Scott, sheriff, and Dave Skou, communications center supervisor, were present Tuesday to propose that the county consider hiring a full-time employee to replace a part-time dispatcher who has resigned.
Scott explained that the dispatcher position is not one that can be filled simply by pulling somebody off the street. It takes $4,640 to train a person for a dispatching position. The history of using part-time employees for the position has been one of heavy turnover with frequent training expense.
The full-time position would be a flex position with assignment possible other than dispatching. The full-time position would eliminate some regularly scheduled over-time.
One already trained part-time employee will be offered the full-time position in order to avoid more training expense.
The supervisors approved a motion to authorize the hiring of a full-time dispatcher.