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Supervisors to vote on Watershed Authority

Published: Monday, Nov. 18, 2013 11:13 a.m. CDT • Updated: Monday, Nov. 18, 2013 11:15 a.m. CDT

Jasper County’s involvement in the future Mud Creek, Camp Creek and Spring Creek Watershed Management Authority will be decided at Tuesday’s meeting of the Jasper County Board of Supervisors.

A vote on joining the Authority was tabled during the Nov. 7 meeting. During that meeting, Mark Land represented the Authority on behalf of his firm Snyder & Associates and presented information to the board about the proposal.

This new authority would include Jasper, Marion and Polk counties and the cities of Altoona, Bondurant, Mitchellville, Pleasant Hill and Runnells and the Soil and Water Conservation Districts’ of the three counties.

“The concept of a watershed management authority … was really driven by all that flooding we saw back in 2008,” Land told the board at the Nov. 7 meeting. “It was kind of the legislatures idea, after a lot of input, to kind of say, ‘Well, you can look at a watershed here, which is where the water goes after it hits the land, and it doesn’t fall by jurisdictional boundaries.’”

Joining the Authority would be of no cost to the county and Land told the board it would be the best way to get the county’s views on the watershed heard.

“Your ability to participate in that discussion isn’t as strong if you’re not a part of the discussion,” Land said.  “So, a whole bunch of people are talking about your watershed around a table and it might be good to get your two-cents worth. It’s no more of an obligation than just saying what you think.”

If approved, Board Chair Dennis Stevenson would sign the 28E Agreement confirming the county’s membership and the county would appoint a representative to attend the meetings.

Jasper County Elderly Nutrition Director Kellie Van Manen will present several items to the board during Tuesday’s meeting.

The first item requiring board approval would be an agreement between Elderly Nutrition and Skiff Medical Center. According to the contract, Skiff would contract Elderly Nutrition to provide home delivered meals to clients.

Skiff would pay the county monthly for providing the service and the terms of the contract, if approved, would expire on June 30, 2014.

Van Manen’s second and third request would involve Aging Resources of Central Iowa. ARCI provides advocacy services to the regions elderly citizens.

The second request is for a contract to provide Christmas Day and Thanksgiving Day meals to citizens ages 60 and above. Meals would cost the county $5 a piece and there would be 70 meals distributed each holiday.

If approved, ARCI would reimburse the county for the cost of providing this service.

Van Manen’s final request is for the board to approve of a grant application to ARCI on behalf of the Elderly Nutrition Office. Elderly Nutrition is seeking to receive $120,000 from ARCI.

Staff writer Ty Rushing may be contacted at (641) 792-3121, ext. 426, or at trushing@newtondailynews.com.