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County supervisors approve new snow plow drivers

The Jasper County Board of Supervisors met Tuesday to approve the new snow plow drivers.

George M. Wormley, Jon E. Van Manen and Joel Branderhorst were approved for the 2012-2013 snow season. Each driver will be on call and paid $16 an hour. They will receive no benefits or pay increases, and will be employees until April 30, 2013 on an as-needed basis.

In other news, the board heard from the Conservation Board Director, Keri Van Zante, about budget amendments. She was there is to explain her budget. Van Zante admitted it did not look good on paper, but most will be paid off by other funding.

“Budget looks pretty bad, but there is grant money coming back in,” Van Zante said. “There will be no increase in taxes; 85 percent will be paid back.”

Van Zante explained to the board that the money needed is asked for upfront. She has been working with Federal Emergency Relief Administration, but she explained that the money is paid back at a slow rate. Van Zante hopes to change that. She is asking for $537,000. The board will vote on the matter at the next meeting.

The board also heard from Courthouse Maintenance Director Adam Sparks about a new Annex door.

“We can replace the entire steel frame,” Sparks said to the board. “We can afford to do it now. We have enough money in the budget.”

The board approved of the new door. It will cost $3,660. Sparks did try to get local companies to place a bid, however, he explained that they were too busy.

The board also heard from Vic Amorso of A & J Associates to talk about the HVAC System. The system is energy efficient and will save the county money.

The board also approved $1,029,910.30 to be transferred from the Rural Services Basic fund to the Secondary Roads fund, and $81,597.64 to be transferred from the General Basic Fund to the Secondary Roads Fund.

Also on Tuesday, the board was introduced to new Network Administrator, Ryan Eaton. Eaton used to work for Newton 12 years ago, and was happy to be back.

Matthew Shepard can be contacted at (641) 792-3121 ext. 425 or via email at

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