The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

March 28, 2013

Van Buren Co. clears up rock confusion

KEOSAUQUA — Is it roadstone or “modified subbase?”

That was the question during this week’s Van Buren County Board of Supervisors’ meeting, where officials argued as to what to call the rock being crushed at the county quarry.

County Engineer Dave Barrett has been referring to the rock that is being crushed as 3/4-inch roadstone.

However, Supervisor Bob Waugh said he did some checking, and after getting complaints from a couple of county residents, found that the rock being crushed is considered “modified subbase.” This allows a portion of the rock to be above 3/4-inch. According to  the definition, it can contain up to 30 percent over 3/4-inch and no greater than 1-1/2 inches.

That’s what the contract calls for, Barrett said, and recent tests showed that only 17 percent of the rock is above 3/4 inches. Waugh, however, said he did his own tests with another company, and it met specs with 23 percent over 3/4 inches.

Barrett agreed that it is a modified subbase but said there is a reason he called it 3/4-inch roadstone. The vast majority of the rock is 3/4-inch and “nobody understands what modified subbase is.”

Waugh said he thought it might confuse the public when some of the rock was more than 3/4 inch.

Barrett asked Waugh if the person who did the testing was accredited by the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration. According to federal law, if a mine is “active” (such as when rock is being crushed), then the only ones allowed on the site are those accredited by MSHA. Waugh assured him that the person doing the inspection was accredited.

Waugh also questioned the hardness of the rock. “If the rock breaks down, how much is it worth?” he asked.

Barrett has said the rock is of good quality.

Supervisor Ted Nixon said, “One of the things they stressed at an ISAC meeting is all roads have a life cycle. Cement roads last so long, about 50 years, blacktop roads last so long and gravel roads have a life cycle.”

Gravel, he said, won’t last forever and much of it gets swept to the side of the road by traffic, not because it’s too soft. The supervisors also discussed whether spending double on the price per ton from another quarry was justified, unless it was used for short hauls, like it is now.

Text Only
Local News
  • Lottery sales top $3 billion mark OTTUMWA — Mother Nature may have thrown Iowans a brutal winter, but it didn’t stop them from venturing out to buy lottery tickets. On Tuesday, the Iowa Lottery confirmed that it had topped the $3 billion mark in sales for the third consecutive year.

    July 29, 2014

  • halo-5-guardians-concept_wallpaper-1920x1080-53cf9b0098ea45ada37dc0f66bc174f5.jpg The Art of Kong

    OTTUMWA — The Mona Lisa. Whistler's Mother. Donkey Kong? Don't be so surprised, said Walter Day, that video games and the surrounding memorabilia are being considered art. The creativity and artistic vision required to create a poster, said the found

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Slideshow: Truck overturns on roundabout

    July 28, 2014

  • 0729 OTT Picture veteran -T -M Veteran finally receives his medals OTTUMWA — A World War II injury may have saved the life of a U.S. Coast Guardsman from Iowa, but he lost friends and a box of military awards. Francis Hardy Harbour was born on Dec.16, 1919, in Drakesville. He joined the Coast Guard in 1941 as a mach

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Seasonal forecast Cool summer leading to cool fall? OTTUMWA — By late July, the average daytime high temperature starts to drop. What is normally the hottest part of the year is over. Averages are still in the mid-80s, and it certainly wouldn’t be out of the ordinary to see days in even the upper 90s.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • IHCC buildings.jpg Grant helps Hills keep students on track

    OTTUMWA — Thanks to a grant designed to improve graduation rates, Indian Hills Community College now has even more tools in its campuswide effort to help students with needs and give them the resources they need to stay in class. Indian Hills is one

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0728 OTT ribs in eldon BBQ dinner with a hundred friends

    ELDON --- This year's Eldon Rib Cook-off was won by three BBQ chefs --- and about 150 hungry visitors. "I was down here last year, too," said Dwayne Yates from Floris, who was biting into his third smoked rib. "I never had a bad one yet." That's what

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mediacom: Rural cable consumers and companies mistreated OTTUMWA --- You may want to add just a racing channel, a court channel or a nature channel to your cable line up. Unfortunately, you'll probably have to buy a "bundle," which, ironically, is what it will cost you here in Wapello County. That's accord

    July 26, 2014

  • Alternate juror could not have convicted Techel based on evidence DAVENPORT — An alternate juror who was dismissed before Seth Techel, 23, of Agency was convicted of killing his wife and the non-consensual termination of a human pregnancy says the verdict could have been different if she had been in deliberations.D

    July 25, 2014

  • Overcome testing fear, get a good job OTTUMWA — It's not who you know, it's what you know. That's what City leaders say about getting a good paying job in Ottumwa. "It seems like in the last year we've had a real reduction in the number of individuals who've applied," said Joni Keith, hu

    July 25, 2014

Photo reprints