County hopes to save on road grading

Published 9:18 pm Friday, May 14, 2010

Decatur County Public Works will soon be using a form of recycling to help improve the county’s dirt roads.

At their Tuesday meeting, county commissioners approved, by unanimous vote, a proposal from Oxford Construction Company to crush concrete slabs and asphalt the County Public Works Department has stockpiled, for re-use in grading the county’s dirt roads. Oxford will crush about 20,000 tons of concrete at a price of $7.30 per ton and about 4,000 tons of asphalt at a cost of $4.65 per ton, for a total estimated cost of about $164,600.

When purchased from another source, the road-smoothing material—known as “graded aggregate base,” or GAB—costs $18.50 per ton if purchased pre-mixed versus the $7.30 per ton to grind the concrete themselves, which will provide a substantial savings, County Administrator Tom Patton said. GAB is used to provide a smoother, more durable surface for vehicles to travel upon.

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Asked by Commissioner Butch Mosely how long the ground-up concrete and asphalt would last, County Public Works Superintendent Dennis Medley provided an example. About 4,000 tons of ground-up material will first be used to grade 1.6 miles of Brock Cemetery Road, which is about 19 feet wide. Depending on the width of the roads it will be used on, Public Works should be able to grade about 7 to 10 miles of county roads with what Oxford grinds, Medley said.

Other business

In other business conducted at their Tuesday meeting, county commissioners:

 Heard an update on the status of Main Street Broadband’s rollout of wireless Internet service in rural Decatur County, as reported on in the Wednesday, May 12, issue of The Post-Searchlight.

 Heard a presentation by representatives of the county’s auditing firm, Fowler, Holley, Rambo and Stalvey of Valdosta, Ga., on an audit of county finances for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2009. The county received a clean bill of health on its finances, according to the auditors.

 Approved, by unanimous vote, construction of a 250-foot telecommunications tower to be located on 430 acres of property owned by Dewey Brock Sr. and Stanley Brock off the west side of Georgia 97 North, between its intersections with Deese and Martin roads. The tower, to be constructed by American Tower, will expand coverage of AT&T cellular service in the county.

 Approved, by unanimous vote, a low bid of $31,450 from Nichols Tractor of Bainbridge for a new John Deere 6115D mowing tractor to be used by the county’s Public Works Department. The new tractor will replace one that had a broken transmission deemed too expensive to repair. In related business, the county government also recently sold an older dirt pan and a tractor used at the Industrial Air Park for approximately $18,000 each, County Finance Director Carl Rowland said.

 Approved, by unanimous vote, a bid of $1.08 per meal from Trinity Services Group of Oldsmar, Fla., for the food services contract at the Decatur County Prison and Jail. The new contract will increase the annual cost of meals for state and county inmates by about $1,822 per year, to an estimated $491,961.