Family asks county for rock, asphalt

Another "deal," struck by a previous road and bridge department head with a county resident, was brought to the attention Monday of Marion County Commission.

Francis Jirak, Margaret Jirak, and Ron Jirak of rural Lincolnville, asked the commission to "make good" on an agreement that originally was signed in 1959.

Francis Jirak said he and his family had been promised "a lot of stuff."

The county had been leasing a little more than an acre from the family's property on 290th Road for storage of road materials. Recently the county sent the family a letter, stating the land no longer was needed.

Since that time, the county had removed some of the asphalt but, according to Francis Jirak, it was not sufficient and now that area is wasteland.

He said the ground can't be farmed because there still are chunks of asphalt. The family is willing to settle for a six-inch layer of rock instead of requiring all of the asphalt be removed and top soil be laid.

Francis and Ron Jirak then questioned why the county would give up the storage facility and had observed county workers traveling longer distances to haul road materials to job sites.

The county had purchased property a few years ago in Pilsen for nearly $30,000.

Frances Jirak also complained about the condition of the driveway which is supposed to be maintained as part of the contract agreement. He requested four to six inches of asphalt for the driveway.

After the family left the meeting, acting public works director John Summerville showed the commission the letter sent to the Jiraks which released the county from the 50-year-old contract. County attorney Susan Robson told Summerville that the letter negated any liability on the county's part.

"We hauled the asphalt for the purpose of bringing back the original grass," Summerville said. "It's not sterile. There are weeds there."

He continued that the request for four to six inches of overly was unreasonable because the county doesn't even use that much on county roads.

"It probably would be best to put rock on it (the former storage area) and be done with it," commission chairman Bob Hein said.