Progress on Old Highway 35?

Progress on Old Highway 35?

By Zach Hester, Reporter •

DeKALB COUNTY, Ala. — The DeKalb County Commission held its regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday, January 14. 

At the request of Commissioner Lester Black, DeKalb County Engineer Ben Luther delivered an update regarding the process of repairs and the reopening of County Road 835 (CR835), also known as Old Highway 35.

Last February, after a large amount of rainfall, CR835 was damaged and forcibly closed. Since then, slow and steady progress has begun to repair the road.

Luther gave a brief timeline of where the project has been and will be going in the future. After the incident occurred, Luther provided a detailed damage inspection report, which was approved by the Alabama Department of Transportation on April 25, then approved by the Federal Highway Administration on June 12.

From there, ALDOT requested further documentation and coordinated an on-site environmental visit to the road late last year. After submitting full plans for the repair on January 6, Luther stated that work is scheduled to begin this spring.

In addition to his update on CR835, Luther addressed the approval of one of the applications submitted for 2020 HRRR programs by the Department of Transportation. The approved application includes the replacement or installation of all roadway signs on County Road 89 from Highway 35 at the top of the mountain to DeSoto State Park. This project will be a 90/10 split with the State of Alabama.

DeKalb County Road Superintendent Tom Broyles reported that his department had been patching holes, but not doing any hauling because of the recent weather. Broyles also stated that due to flooding, the road in Buck’s Pocket remains closed. 

The Commission approved the following personnel changes in the Road Department:

  • Don Harcrow to fill one of the two vacant positions in Commission District 3
  • Lamar Weathers to fill the open position in Commission District 2

The Commission accepted and approved the following personnel changes in the DeKalb County Sheriffs Office:

  • The resignation of Jordan McGinnis, and hired him as a part-time deputy to replace Lonnie Hairel 
  • Promoted John Brown to corrections sergeant to replace McGinnis
  • Hired Brandon Poe as a correctional officer to replace Brown

In new business, the Commission approved the following: 

  • A six-year aerial photography contract with Eagle View to be paid annually for two flights, at the request of DeKalb County Revenue Commissioner Tyler Wilks
  • Information Technology (IT) Server bid to Dell Technologies in the amount of $257,858.22
  • Appointed Billy Black of Flat Rock to the Jackson-DeKalb Water Authority Board to fill the vacancy left by Kent Welden
  • Sales Tax Holiday for Severe Weather Preparedness to be held on Friday, February 21 through Sunday, February 23
  • The Liability Insurance Resolution, which must be renewed every three years
  • School resource officer (SRO) training in Prattville, Ala. from Monday, January 20 through Thursday, January 23
  • Sent a damage claim from Susan Heap to the insurance company
  • Approved the purchase of a boom mower from Chambers American Products in the amount of $154,500

The next meeting of the DeKalb County Commission will be held on Tuesday, January 28, 2020, at 10 am on the second floor of the DeKalb County Activities Building.

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