The Cherokee County Board of Supervisors met with Mark Cory of Ahler & Cooney Law, and Scott Stevenson of Ruan Securities, on Tuesday. The Board sought their advice on ballot language for the next week's resolution to call for an August 4 election regarding the proposed new Cherokee County Law Enforcement Center.
The majority of the discussion of that meeting focused on how to state the cost of the project on the ballot. After a discussion with Stevenson, it was apparent at this time that the total project cost is impossible to predict at this time in the venture.
It was agreed that construction costs, construction bidding and interest rates on financial options and equipment could all differ from the architect's estimate, ether higher of lower, by the time for construction of the proposed project. That being the case, an exact estimate on a ballot would only confuse voters if the project did not conclude at said project cost.
Cory advised the Board to have two figures in the ballot language - one figure for the bonding cost - not to exceed the amount of $3.5 million, which means the County could borrow up to that amount and no more; and the other figure Cory recommended to the Board was that of total project cost not to exceed $3.75 million, which means that voters would not allow any more monies to be allocated for the project if the total cost of the project would reach that amount.
The resolution to call for the LEC election will be held at Tuesday's Supervisor meeting.
In a related note, the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office has released location, dates and times that they will present their presentation to the public. The presentations will be held at the Aurelia Community Center on June 15, the Cherokee Community Center on June 16 , the Cleghorn Community Center on June 18 , the Washta Community Center on June 22, the Marcus Community Center on June 24 . and the Larrabee Community Center on June 29 . All presentations will begin at 7 p.m. on the announced dates. Dates for the presentations in Quimby and Meriden will be announced later.
The Sheriff's Department encourages the public to attend these meetings to hear them state their need for a new jail and law enforcement center, and to ask any questions they might have. You can also see the Sheriff's Department presentation online at www.cherokeecountyiowa.com.
Other business for the Board included a request for a utility permit by County Engineer Dave Shanahan for Cherokee Rural Water on 48th Street near Marcus; and a request for an underground permit for Schaller Telephone in Diamond Township. The Board approved both requests.
The Board also approved a wage request by several non-union employees at the Secondary Road Department. A 72 cents/hour increase was approved for Larry Walker, and Janet Cedar and Marty Jenness both received 50 cent/hour increases. Seven union employees received a 21-cent per hour increase, and were moved from 'general laborer' to 'operator' status.