County Commissioner

News Release

 

The rainy summer continues to disrupt scheduled projects and we have spent an inordinate amount of time cleaning debris out of bridges and tinhorns. We are also putting in and repairing quite a few tin horns to accommodate the increase in water runoff.

 

We completed the three road projects that were funded via an agreement with the Comanche Nation’s Transportation Department.  Madische, McIntosh, and Chibitty Roads were recycled late last year and we were planning to oil and chip them this spring, but the weather had delayed their completions to later this summer.

 

We also recycled and oiled and chipped Bay Drive in Bay Addition.

 

The Bureau of Indian Affairs finally signed off on our bridge on Airport Road, after a lot of communication to get the matter resolved. The bridge construction is scheduled for a November letting by ODOT. The latest inspection by engineers has deemed that the bridge has deteriorated to a point that we will be required to either close the road or lower the weight limit to 3 tons.

 

The bridge to replace the low-water crossing on Bishop Road over Post Oak Road is progressing.   The needed right of way has been purchased and the work orders have been issued to the utility companies to move the water line and overhead electric lines.  The construction of the bridge is scheduled for 2018.

 

CEC engineering has been selected to develop the design to replace the old truss bridge over West Cache Creek on old Cache Road.  We are waiting on the preliminary plans.  Construction on that bridge is schedule for 2020.

 

On June 19, we signed an agreement with Overland Corporation, after they had the low bid for milling out the rough spots and to do a 2 inch overlay on 82nd Street from Coombs to S.H. 36. Some of the milling was done, however we did some additional blade leveling to make the road smoother.  Overland has yet to begin the overlay, which was by contract to be completed by August 4th.  A $200 a day penalty is being assessed from that date.

 

We awarded a contract to T&G Construction LLC to put down a 2 inch asphalt overlay on portions of Briarcreek and Heatherstone in Pecan Valley South, Deyo Mission from RR tracks south to Lee Blvd, Cache Road from County Road 115 to the Cache Creek Bridge, Lee Blvd west of County Road 115 to Quanah Road, County Road from Woodlawn to Post Oak Creek Bridge and Baseline portion of 115.

 

Someone built a fire under the bridge on 267 just north of Cross Road.  The heat was so intense that it caused a large portion of concrete to flake off exposing the reinforcing steel.  We had to purchase a special bonding material to repair the bridge, otherwise it may have had to be replaced.

 

The Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge gave us about 200 tons of millings.  Several loads were taken to the Medicine Park Aquarium for their parking lot.  The rest was stock piled at the County Barn for future use.

 

We milled out a rough spot and blade leveled a portion of 8th Street in Cache.  We worked on an alley way and baseball diamond parking lot for Chattanooga School, hauled some gravel for the Chattanooga Volunteer Fire Department’s station and built a road for Cache Public Schools to help alleviate their traffic problem.

 

The guys spent 3 days hauling out the dirt from the exhibition building at the fairgrounds.  District 1 had hauled the dirt in for the International Horse play days.  District 1 and 3 take turn about helping them out with projects.

 

Carl Mullins retired from the District 3 work force having worked for 8 years.  Carl operated the patch truck, drove a dump truck and was willing to help anywhere he was needed and was a valued member of the District 3 team.  We wish him the best in his retirement.

 

I worked again this year in developing the County Budget for FY 2017-2018, coordinating with the other elected officials and department heads.

 

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the County Barn at 580-429-3217 or the Courthouse office at 580-353-3717.

What’s normal weather in Oklahoma?  This is the sixth spring since I have been in office and each spring has been different. Every week we have had heavy enough rains somewhere in the District that some road work is needed to bring them back into shape. This has put us behind in our mowing.

 

This also took time away from getting to the roads that are on our list to oil and chip and puts us behind on our planned projects. However, as reported earlier, last fall we have recycled McIntosh Road from State Highway 59 to Chibitty Road and north on Chibitty to the dead end.

 

Also, we have entered into a joint project with the Comanche Nation Transportation Department to oil and chip Madische Road from McIntosh Road to the dead end.  They will pay for the materials and the tinhorns.

 

We have a joint project with Comanche County District 1, and Comanche Nation to oil and chip Hurst Road from State Highway 36 four miles south.  The first two miles are in District 1 and the second two miles are in our District.  The Comanche Nation is paying for the materials and the two districts are sharing in getting the road ready and oiling and chipping it.

 

Other roads on our plans to resurface this year are Indiahoma Road from Woodlawn Road to the Baseline Road.  We already have a mile of the three miles ready.  If time and weather permits we plan to resurface Holsey Acres Road from Cache Road to the Post Oak Creek bridge and Deyo Mission Road from Lee Blvd to Coombs Road.

 

We are still waiting on the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Anadarko to sign off on the Indian land that is needed for the additional right of way so the new bridge on Airport Road can be built. All the additional right of way needed on the east side has been purchased and fortunately all the utilities are on that side and have been moved. We were hoping to get the new bridge completed before the start of the school year because school busses have to be rerouted around the mile of Airport Rd.  The BIA has held up this project for over a year.

 

The bridge to replace the low water crossing over Post Oak Creek on Bishop Road is progressing.  The environmental study has been completed,  the bridge design plan has been developed and Pinnacle, the company we have hired to accrue the right of way, is in the process of finalizing the agreements with the landowners. The next step will be to move the utilities and then construction will be possible next year.

 

We are adding a new bridge to our 5-year plan for approval by the Oklahoma Department of Transportation.  This bridge is on Airport Road over Persimmon Creek and is located southwest of Faxon.  The only catch is the Legislature keeps raiding the County Road and Bridge Improvement fund (CIRB) to balance the state’s budget shortfall.  Over the past four years the Legislature has taken over $170 million from this fund and put a cap on it reducing the amount of money that can go into it.   The other two bridges on our 5-year plan are the truss bridge over West Cache Creek on Cache Road and the bridge on Rock Creek on Cache Road.

 

Billy Bigbow and Tyler Fletcher attended a road building and repair seminar in Chickasha sponsored by Ergon. The day long course covered the types and causes of road damage, how to fix them, and the types of oils and application on chip sealing roads.

 

Kenny Kinder, Road Foremen, attended the Association of County Commissioners of Oklahoma (ACCO) safety meeting on April 6-7, 2017.

 

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the County Barn at 580-429-3217 or the Courthouse office at

580-353-3717.

 

The year ended on a sad and shocking note for us.  Steve Ronio, a 20 year employee of District 3, was killed in a head on collision on Rogers Lane by a reckless driver. Steve was a very talented heavy equipment operator and has been sorely missed as we began the New Year.

 

Over the holidays there was a pasture fire at 115 County Road and Coombs Road.  Some of the guys were called out to put out a fire that had gotten in to 100 or so round bales.  If they are not broken up, round bales will smolder for a long time requiring a volunteer fireman to be on the scene for an extended period of time.

 

We began the year with snow and ice that got us out sanding the bridges, hills and intersections on the 6th, 7th and 8th of January and again on the 14th.

 

We received funding from FEMA to mitigate two areas that continually washed out.  One was on Wolf Road where there were three steel pipes for cross drains.  FEMA paid us to put in larger tin horns to accommodate the runoff and the last big rain it proved to be successful.

 

The other was what we call Johnson’s Crossing on 287, which is on the Kiowa-Comanche County line  This was a low water crossing that regularly was damaged as the result of heavy rains in the mountains.  FEMA provided the funding to increase the size and number of tin horns that would handle the runoff.

 

While we were in the area, the guys took out an old bridge located on Wolf Road east of 287 and replaced it with a tin horn.

 

As per an agreement with ODOT and the Mayor of Medicine Park, we put new runners on the truss bridge that goes into the town.  The bridge was built over a hundred years ago, and adds to the historical look of Medicine Park.

 

We are still waiting on BIA’s approval on the easement acquisition for the right of way on the west side for a new bridge on Airport Road a half mile south of Cache Road.  The easement for the east side was purchased and utilities were moved last summer.

 

Because of slow processing of the documents through that agency, this project has been delayed a year. We were hoping for an April letting of the construction bid so we would have the bridge completed by the time school started next school year so the school buses could use that road.

 

The road crew has recycled and prepared McIntosh from SH 58 to Chibitty and Chibitty north to the dead end.  This road is ready to be oiled and chipped this summer.

 

The crew will begin work on Indiahoma Road from Woodlawn to the Baseline and Baseline Road from SH 36 to 112th Street. These two roads will be oiled and chipped later this summer as well.

 

On our bridges, particularly located on major collectors, vehicles crowd the center line and it wears off the center stripe faster.  Road Foreman Kenny Kinder located some plastic reflectors that can be glued on the center line making it more visible at night.

 

He also located some flexible plastic tubing that has reflecting tape to mark the guard rail on bridges.  Being flexible, farm equipment won’t bend or break them and they remain highly visible at night.

 

We continue to help the schools and municipalities in our District.  Cache High preparing for baseball season needed some dirt and gravel for the ball field.  The Fairground Road in Indiahoma was graded before the start of their stock show.  We also provided Chatty FFA some screenings before the start of their stock show.  We also hauled some dirt for Indiahoma School to fill in where the rain had washed some dirt away from their buildings.

 

To take advantage of the rainy day weather when the guys could not be out in the District working, Foreman, Kenny Kinder had the guys gather and sell our old scrap iron, mostly rusted out tin horns.  The State Law allows us to sell scrap iron if we get three telephone bids.  The effort got us over $2,500 to add back into our Maintenance and Operation Fund.

 

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the County Barn at 580-429-3217 or the Courthouse office at

580-353-3717.

 

The late summer has kept us busy mowing and at the same time we were preparing for winter by stock piling over 500 tons of sand.

 

With the cooler temperatures, we have ended our road resurfacing for the year. The late rainy season delayed our getting started. We did oil and chip a mile of New Hope, a mile of Coombs, a mile of Paint Rd. by the Cache Cemetery and 2.5 miles in Pecan Valley South.

 

The guys did a major repair project on MeersPorterhill Road just east of Meers. The road had deteriorated to a point that large portions had to be replaced. To move the water from under the roadway a French drain was placed down before the new asphalt was laid.

 

At the request of the City of Cache, we patched and then did an oil and chip overlay on Oak and Mountain View Streets, and oiled and chipped 4th Street from Elm to Oak Streets. We also patched streets in Indiahoma at their request.

 

We tried a new technique call Scrub Seal on Indiahoma Road from U.S. 62 north to the refuge gate. The oil used in this process is infused with latex and a set of brooms are pulled behind the oil distributor truck. The purpose of the brooms is to push the oil into and fill the cracks. Then a layer of 3/8” chips are laid down and rolled. This will extend the life of this asphalt road.

 

We had a bridge on Logue Chapel Road near the Faxon Cemetery that had caused us some concern because it had been settling. The bridge was built in early Statehood and had narrow concrete guardrails that would not allow the passage of larger modern day farm equipment. We hired ECE Engineering to do a hydrology study to determine what could be used to replace it. They recommended a 10’ tinhorn.

 

Old railroad tank cars with the ends cut out and the wheels removed are available and are sometimes used where a large tinhorn is needed. The guys took out the old bridge and installed the 10’ tank car. In addition to being faster to install, the cost was considerably less. The tank car cost $10,000 whereas a replacement bridge would have cost over $60,000 to build and the road would have been closed for a longer period of time.

 

We are making progress on replacing the bridge on Airport Road. The additional right of way on the east side has been acquired and we were fortunate that all the utilities are on the east side and have been relocated to accommodate the new bridge. We are tentatively scheduled for an April letting of the construction contract provided that the right of way on the west side can be acquired.

 

We had a Plan-in-Hand meeting with the engineers and ODOT for the bridge that will replace the low water crossing at Post Oak Creek on Bishop Road. The construction of the bridge is scheduled for 2018.

 

At the request of the Emergency Manager, we improved the road going to the County’s repeater tower located on Big Rock Mountain near Medicine Park, and also the crew cut down the tall grass that surrounded it to prevent damage in case of a fire.

 

We continue to help the City, towns and schools in the Western District, we moved some cement blocks for Cache’s Fall Fest, dug the holes in the Cache City park for the new playground equipment, cut down the shoulders on 8th St. between H Ave. and Oak Ave. to allow the water to drain off of the roadway, removed a side walk for the Chatty School, built a road to the Cache School’s Ag barn, hauled a load of sand for a Cache School playground and hauled several loads of gravel to the Medicine Park Aquarium.

 

I met with Brad Burgess, ODOT Transportation Commissioner, Mitch Surrett and Jay Earp of ODOT and Jennifer Ellis, Medicine Park Trustee concerning the one lane bridge in Medicine Park. The County agreed to do the repairs that are needed for it to remain safe and useable. The ODOT representatives will work with Ellis to secure a grant to refurbish the bridge.

 

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the County Barn at 580-429-3217 or the Courthouse office at 580-353-3717.

We continue to work on the roads and bridges to bring them back into shape after the spring rains.  It is amazing how much debris washes down the creeks and how fast grass grows when we have good rains. It’s hard to keep up with only 3 mowers in the District.

 

The road crew oiled and chipped Paint Road by the Cache Cemetery and G Avenue in Cache and New Hope Road between 112th Street and Hurst Road. We also plan to oil and chip Coombs between 112th Street and 82nd Street and if time permits before the weather gets too cool, we will recycle McIntosh Road from State Highway 58 to Chibitty Road.

 

The Comanche Nation Transportation director has contacted us about oil and chipping Maddiashe Road from McIntosh to the end of the road.  By agreement with the tribe, the materials are paid for out of the highway funds they receive from the BIA and we furnish the equipment and manpower.

 

The road crew is currently working in Pecan Valley South digging out bad spots and recycling portions of the roads and we will oil and chip them later this month.  The roads in this addition were poorly constructed without a proper base.  Also, the two trash pickup companies making two pick-ups a week with heavily loaded trucks continue to take a toll on these roads.

 

We are patching a number of spots on Meers Porterhill Road between SH 115 and 58.  There are springs under some spots that make it hard to hold the road surface.  The crew has installed French Drains to see if the water can be drained off from under the road surface.

 

Through the years there have been a number of accidents and three deaths at the intersection of Deyo Mission and Cache Road.  After the last accident we installed a stop sign that has red LED lights that are powered by a solar panel.  Those two signs cost approximately $3,000 plus the poles they are mounted on.

 

We entered into an agreement with USDA’s National Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) to put rip rap on Post Oak Creek to prevent further erosion in the bank on to Big Bow Road in Holsey Acres Subdivision.  The cost of this project was paid for by NRCS and we provided traffic control and a front end loader to move the rip rap and a dozer to clean up after the project was over.

 

Road Forman, Kenny Kinder and I met with Jay Earp the newly appointed District Engineer for District 7 regarding possible funding to put a new surface on 82nd Street from Lee Blvd to SH 36 (Baseline).  We also discussed the one lane bridge at Medicine Park that is need of repair or replacing.  Under State Statute the County Commissioners are authorized to assist small municipalities and schools.

 

Since our last report we assisted Medicine Park by brooming the street before the week end festival and hauled some rock; graded a portion of Walnut Street in Cache: hauled several loads of dirt to Cache School and moved dirt for Chattanooga School.

 

Two landowners wanted to put in new fences so we took the opportunity to clean out their fence lines which helped them and the county by improving drainage in the bar ditches on Wolf and 267 Roads.

 

While mowing in the south part of the District, our mower operator found an artillery shell in the bar ditch.  This caused some excitement and the Ft. Sill demolition experts came and picked it up.

 

The past two months I have spent quite a bit of time meeting individually with County officers and department heads to complete the County budget for fiscal year 2016-2017.  We have a budget that has met the amount of projected revenues, the Board of County Commissioners have approved it and I will be meeting this next week with the Excise Board for approval.  After approval, the budget will then go to the State Auditor and Inspector for certification before it becomes official.

 

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the County Barn at 580-429-3217 or the Courthouse office at

580-353-3717.

 

All of the rain we have had the last two years have been great compared to the drought of the last few preceding years.  But we continue to work to keep up with rain and flood damage and have gotten behind on mowing and oil and chipping the roads that are scheduled to be redone this summer.  We will make every effort to catch up before winter weather.

 

The rains that caused road and bridge damage this year started on April 16th and went off and on through June 13th.   We have lost track of how many times we have had to clear debris from bridges and culverts and to re-gravel and re-grade roads.

 

The worst damage this year was the bridge on Bandy Road where it crosses Big Sandy Creek.   The south approach was washed out completely.  It cost us an estimated $50,000 to repair it so the road could be opened.

 

The heavy rains washed out a set of three tin horns on Tinney Rd east of 52nd Street.   After they were installed and the road way built up the rains on June 11 and 12 caused additional damage that had to be repaired. Also the June 11th rain storm flooded and washed asphalt off of the bridge at Maddische Road north of State Highway 49.

 

The low water crossing on Autumn Drive had to be repaired two times because of high water from the run off.

 

The Legislature, in order to pass a state budget took 1 million dollars from the ODOT equipment revolving fund, which we had used to buy 3 new Mack 10-wheeler dump trucks and a patch truck and took 50 million dollars from the County Improvements for Roads and Bridges (CIRB) Fund.  This is a dedicated fund that was established some time ago to assist counties with building roads and bridges that most could not afford to do on their own.  Comanche County has a number of outdated bridges that are on a 5-year plan to be replaced. This action by the Legislature may delay the replacement for 8 years.

 

We met with a representative from Oklahoma Emergency Management to survey our damage from the June 11th and 12th rains.  This was a preliminary assessment to see if the County qualifies for FEMA assistance. Unfortunately it did not include the damage from all the rains that we received prior to that date.

 

The road crew is recycling roads getting them ready to oil and chip this summer.  G Street between 1st & 2nd Streets in Cache, Paint Road from the railroad tracks north to Rogers Lane, New Hope from Hurst Rd to S.H. 36, Coombs Rd from 82nd to 112th St. and Havenshire Circle in Pecan Valley South. If time permits, we plan to do McIntosh Rd from S.H. 58 east for about a mile.

 

We took delivery of two 2017 International single axle dump trucks.   One will replace the old patch truck and the other will be used with the backhoe. We also bought a flat bed low-boy trailer to haul our heavy equipment to job sites.

 

We hauled in dirt for Chattanooga School where they are making a playground out of a parking lot that was donated to them.  We put millings from the City of Cache street project on the road by the Cache School’s elementary building where parent’s line up to pick up children and also hauled sand to a playground.

 

The guys hauled dirt into the Coliseum at the Comanche County Fairgrounds for an upcoming horse show, and we swept the shoulders of State Highway 115 from Cache to the Refuge for the Tour of the Wichita’s Bike Race.

 

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the County Barn at 580-429-3217.

The rains that came this past weekend caused almost as much damage to the roads and bridges as last year’s May floods. The Road Foreman Kenny Kinder, along with Dennis Long, Arnold Fisher, Flint Runyan, Melvin Beeson, James Morehead, and Tyler Fletcher, along with myself spent most of the day Sunday, the 17th assessing the damage and putting up road blocks and barricades.

 

Our Administrative Assistant, Betty Berthold announced her retirement effective May 5th. Betty has 35 years of service with Comanche County starting in 1981, working for the County Clerk and for the past 17 years, she has worked at the District 3 County Barn under Commissioners Larry Buchwald, Susan Ulrich, and me. She is well deserving of her retirement and we wish her good luck and happy days.

 

The asphalting of the Cache streets east of 1st Street has been completed. As mentioned before, this was a joint project involving Comanche County, City of Cache and the Comanche Nation Transportation Department. The County provided the engineering and went through the bid process to select a contractor. The City repaired the curb and gutter and replaced tinhorns, and the Tribe did the inspection and will reimburse the County for the contractor for laying the aggregate and asphalt. A total of 2 miles of streets was replaced.

 

The road crew is recycling roads getting them ready to oil and chip this summer. Paint Road from the railroad tracks north to Rogers Lane, New Hope from Hurst Rd to S.H. 36, Coombs Rd from 82nd to 112 St. If time permits, McIntosh Rd from S.H. 58 east for about a mile. An old wooden bridge was replaced on 4-Mile Road near the Caddo County line with two foot tinhorns.

 

After the accident on US 62 that totaled the old dump truck used for patching, we went out for bids for one or more 2000 or newer single axle dump trucks. The only used truck bids that was received did not meet our specs, so we selected the bid for two new International trucks. One will replace the patch truck and the other will be used with the backhoe. We will take delivery on them next month.

 

At the request of the Mayor of Faxon, we will haul off debris from the wind storm that caused considerable amount of damage in his town a week ago. If the town folks will haul it to the curb, we will haul it to the dump.

 

As spring has set-in the crew has been spraying herbicide on the bridge approaches and the intersections to improve visibility.   We are getting the mowers ready and will start mowing full time soon. We are proud of the two new John Deere tractors and mowers we bought last year.

 

The guys assisted the Comanche County Fairground by hauling off wood chips from a livestock show and loaning them our bucket truck to repair their flag pole.

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the County Barn at 580-429-3217.

The first two months of the year have passed quickly and busily. We responded to quite a lot of calls about trees down in the road ways and in or near right of ways. This was due to the drought we experienced earlier, and now strong winds are blowing them down.

 

We have started to get some roads ready to be oil and chipped this summer. We have completed “G” Street between 1st and 2nd Streets in Cache. This is part of a larger project that is in cooperation with the City and Comanche Nation Transportation Department. Starting March 14th T & G Construction will begin the resurfacing of the streets east of 1st Street.

 

We are currently preparing Paint Road from the railroad tracks north to Rogers Lane ready to be oil and chipped this summer. We also recycled the street by the low income housing in Chattanooga.

 

We recycled Tennessee and 34th Streets, near Lawton in our District. We put in a tin horn and fixed the bar ditches so it will drain better.

 

Responding to a number of requests to put the center stripe on the bridges on Cache Road, we went out for bid. The low bidder used a hand pushed striper and a string line. As a result, the center lines aren’t very straight, but they are marked. It was about a third of the cost of a bid for a machine striper, but we will most likely go with a machine striper next time for a better result.

 

We rented a crack sealer to use on our asphalt roads, as we have to do occasionally. Sealing the cracks extends the life of the roads, sealing out the water from getting down in the road surface and allowing the freezing temperature to then break up the asphalt.

 

At the request of the schools, we took several loads of gravel to the Indiahoma and Chatty FFA barns. Helped the Comanche County Fair Grounds with clearing out the dirt for the exhibition building following the horse and livestock shows and we hauled off the wood chips from the hog and goat shows.

 

The abandoned truss bridge over Sandy Creek on Holsey Acres Road was washed into the creek by the May 23 flood. We salvaged it and sold it as scrap iron and got over $1,100 for it. I tried to sell it a number of years ago and only got an $800 bid. Now we have it out of the creek and a little money in our operating fund.

 

We are continuing to work with FEMA and have most of the damage caused by the May 23rd flood repaired and have received reimbursement for most of it. However, we are still working with them to try to close out the projects from the 2009 ice storm. FEMA owes District 3 about $850,000 for the work done on damage related to that storm.

 

It has been tradition that the County digs the graves in the rural and small town cemeteries. Since January 1, we have dug 14 graves. There is no charge for this service, unless it falls on a weekend where we have to pay overtime. The funeral home in charge contacts the County when this service is needed.

 

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the County Barn at 580-429-3217.

 

Here we are reaching the end of 2015. It has been a busy year and passed by very quickly.

 

During the last months we have received several slow rains, which has had a softening affect on gravel roads and has kept our grader operators busy working to keep their areas in shape.

 

As a result of a late summer, we were able to continue our oil and chipping later than normal. We completed two miles of Airport Road from Coombs Road to Pecan Road and Coombs from 115 to Airport Road. This makes a total of 14 miles of oil and chip roads that we did this year.

 

The guys have worked on patching the bad spots on Indiahoma Road from U.S. 62 north to the Refuge gate. They cut out the places where the surface has broken down, reinforced the base and resurfaced it with asphalt. Also to prevent damage to other asphalt roads, we rented a crack sealer and filled the cracks with a hot rubbery substance which prevents moisture from getting into the crack and making it larger as the temperature reaches below freezing.

 

We had a preconstruction meeting with the Comanche Nation, City of Cache and T&G Construction Co. regarding the resurfacing of the streets on the east side of Cache. The work will begin on March 14, 2016. By agreement with the three entities, Comanche Nation Transportation will be funding this project.

 

Foreman Kenny Kinder, FEMA Coordinator Debbie McDonald and I have had several meetings with representatives from FEMA working out the details for the District to get reimbursement for work and materials associated with repairing the damage caused by the May floods.

 

To improve the safety of our roads and bridges, we have begun to install new reflectors on the guard rails. They are more reflective than the old ones and are more visible at night. Also, we have contracted with a local company to restripe our larger bridges on the major roads.

 

The CEC Engineering Co. completed the required inspection of the bridges in our District. We had 26 bridges that received a rating that requires us to do preventative repair this year to prevent it from becoming a serious problem. In addition, there were 18 others that needed some type of maintenance. We had only a total of 5 bridges on the list to be repaired in 2014. The increase was due to the flooding this past year.

 

We have increased the number of trucks equipped with sand spreaders from 2 to 4. They are loaded and in the barn to stay dry in case we need them over the Holidays.

 

We continue to work with the schools in our District. Cache Public Schools requested our help to improve the parking lot south of the stadium and improve a road at the elementary school. A parking lot was graveled at the Chattanooga School.

 

Road Forman Kenny Kinder attended a 2-day safety meeting at the Association of County Commissioners of Oklahoma. Some of the subjects covered: tree trimming safety, working in cold weather, and recognizing drug and alcohol use in the workplace.

 

The employees of District 3 participated in the United Way Campaign and the food drive, contributing over $1,500 to United Way and 1,235 cans of food.

 

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the County Barn at 580-4293217.

 

Spring, summer and fall, when the low temperature is above 50 degrees is our road oil and chipping season. The May floods and subsequent clean up and repair delayed us starting as early as we would have liked to do. Therefore, we ran behind getting to the roads we had scheduled for this year. We were lucky to have a longer than usual warm season.

 

The roads that we have oil and chipped since our last report are Bishop between Deyo and Red Elk Roads, Indiahoma from Lee Blvd to Coombs, Hilary from Meers Porterhill to State Highway 58, Airport Road from Cache Road north to the end of the road, Wildflower Circle in the City of Cache, Airport Road from Coombs to Pecan Road, Coombs Road from County Road 115 to Airport Road, and portions of streets in Pecan Valley South, Wichita Mountain Estates and Pecan Valley North.

 

In cooperation with the Comanche Nation, we have gone out for bid to asphalt the streets on the east side of the City of Cache. That bid opening will be on November 9th at the Comanche County Board of County Commissioner’s meeting.

 

We patched the pot holes on Indiahoma Road from U.S. 62 to the Refuge gate. Ft. Sill had 138 low water crossings wash out during the May flood. The heavy trucks hauling gravel to repair them and trucks coming from the dismantling of Job Corp caused the road to deteriorate more than it would have normally. Also our crew worked at smoothing out some rough spots west of Indiahoma.

 

At the request of the residents in Pecan Valley South, a street light was installed at the corner of 112th Street and Cache Road to light the dark intersection. A portion of the intersection is in the Lawton City limits, therefore an agreement was reached between the City and County to share in the cost of the installation and operation of the street light.

 

We purchased a new oil distributor truck to be used in our oil and chipping operation.  It replaces one that was bought in 1992, and required continuous repairs to keep it operating. In our continuing effort to upgrade the equipment, we purchased two new John Deere tractors and mowers. We picked up 9 pickup trucks off of State surplus to replace ours that have high mileage.

 

As a result of the new acquisitions, we are selling via the bid process a number of pickups, tractors and some heavy equipment. If you are interested, you may inquire at the District 3 County Barn at 907 H Avenue in Cache.

 

Tinhorns were installed in the City of Cache and Town of Chattanooga. At the request of Cache Public Schools, we cleaned out the bar ditches in front of the school along H Avenue.

 

About 10:00 p.m. on October 12th, Road Foreman, Kenny Kinder got a call from dispatch concerning a 40 pound box of roofing nails that had been spilled along Cache Road from Hop-N-Sak to Airport Road. Kenny, Flint Runyan, James Morehead, and Carl Mullins hooked our 5-foot industrial strength magnet on the loader and picked up all the nails in the roadway and went out the next morning and ran the magnet over the shoulder of the road.

 

About 4:00 a.m. on the 16th of October, Kenny got a call from dispatch requesting a grader and loader at a wildfire at Lee Blvd. and Bigbow Road. He, Flint Runyan and Dennis Long responded to provide assistance.

 

If you have questions or concerns, I can be contacted at don.hawthorne@comanchecounty.us or you may phone the Courthouse or County Barn and I will return your call.