Lee County To Look At Gravel Quality

Lee County, IA – Lee County's gravel roads were severely damaged by the rain, snow, and ice of the last few months. County Engineer Ernie Steffensmeier says crews have been working to repair frost-boils and to add new rock to washed out roads.

Lee County Supervisor Larry Kruse (R-1st District) says he gets calls from residents about the quality of the rock being applied. Steffensmeier says the mixture of the rock (large rock vs. lime) meets state standards.

Kruse says while that may be the case, the rock used does not seem to last as long as it should.

"Are the specifications what they should be to get the quality of rock on the road that we need to get," says Kruse, "which would potentially give us better quality of roads and lower costs."

Kruse would like to see some testing take place. He says the county could apply the current rock to one mile of a road, then switch to a higher quality of rock to the next mile of the same road.

Kruse says durability could be tested for a couple of years to see what quality of rock works best. Vice-Chairwoman Janet Fife-LaFrenz says the issue warrants further study by the county.

Kruse says he is also getting phone calls about the productivity of employees in the secondary roads department. The supervisors did not discuss that issue, during its meeting on March 16, instead focusing on the rock quality.

Kruse expects the issue to be discussed at a future workshop. He says privatization could also be a topic of conversation.