Mississippi County works to repair roads in floodway

Monday, June 13, 2011

CHARLESTON, Mo. -- Mississippi County officials are doing their best to restore roads in the Birds Point-New Madrid floodway.

Richard Wallace, county road and bridge superintendent, has county crews building low-water crossings and is getting permission for alternate routes across private land where needed, county commissioners said during their regular meeting Thursday.

"We're trying to get the roads together where people can get back to their fields," Commissioner Steve Jones said. "A temporary route would help a lot of people."

In related business

* Commissioners approved a contract with Smith and Co. of Poplar Bluff, Mo., to inspect the 14 county bridges in the spillway not to exceed $7,000.

"They're going to start [today]," Presiding Commissioner Carlin Bennett said.

The engineering firm said it should be able to inspect two bridges per day.

* A Scott City company informed the commission it is available for hire to do excavation and other work in the county.

"We've got plenty of excavators," said Monty Keesee of M&M Real Estate Development Corp. "If we don't have the equipment, we can get the equipment."

Commissioner Robert Jackson said the county is still waiting to hear from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on what work the county can do and what it will be reimbursed for.

He said there are many individuals and business owners that may want to hire help, however, and recommended advertising in local newspapers.

"Any excavator in this county is being used," Jackson said. "There's going to be lots of work in this county for several years."

Bennett said the commission will add the company to the county's list for future reference.

"At some point, we're going to have a mass moving of rock, moving of dirt," he said.

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