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Money sought to replace Clifton Hollow bridge

Pierce County supervisors voted last week to ask for extra federal money to help replace the old salt-damaged bridge on CTH F in the area commonly known as Clifton Hollow.

The two-lane bridge, which crosses the nearly 200-foot deep Kinnickinnic River valley gorge, has grades of 10 percent on both approaches. Tight curves on the road leading to the bridge also pose challenges to drivers, especially during bad weather, according to the county board resolution adopted Tuesday.

Federal funding is in place to pay 80 percent of approved replacement costs for the existing 156-foot bridge. Work is planned for 2010.

Under the resolution adopted Tuesday, county board members are asking for additional federal money to help pay to lower the grades and widen the curves approaching the bridge.

Approval has already been received for a $3.9 million federal project, meaning the federal government will pay 80 percent of that amount, leaving the county to pay $1.28 million.

If the extra federal money is approved, the county will have to come up with another $620,000 in matching funds and about $100,000 in land acquisition costs, according to Highway Commissioner Ross Christopherson.

The 40-year-old three-span bridge serves a section of road connecting Prescott, Hudson and River Falls. According to local highway officials, CTH F is the most heavily traveled county road in Pierce County.

Christopherson said approach slopes and frequent use of salt to cut the ice on the slopes led to salt running over the edge of the bridge and damaging the lower inside of the structure.

In other action at Tuesday's meeting, the board voted to urge continued state reimbursement for expenses for enhanced 911 services.

In 2003, the Wisconsin Legislature created a three-year surcharge paid by cell phone customers. Much of that money has been going to counties to develop and maintain systems allowing 911 centers to pinpoint the location of cell phone users who call for help. The surcharge, and the funding it provides to the county, will end soon.

These resolutions or ordinances were introduced Tuesday and will be voted on at a later meeting:

--A resolution to give 2.5 percent pay raises to about 50 non-union county employees. This group includes department heads and managers, but not elected officials or the county's administrative coordinator.

--A resolution to increase driveway access permit fees from $25 to $50. The permit fee for subdivision and commercial driveways would be raised to $100.

The highway commissioner said the fee, which helps cover costs related to inspecting the site, has not been adjusted since the 1970s.

--An amended manure storage ordinance. The changes comply with state standards.

Amendments remove requirements that manure pits be screened from view and eliminate the term "manure" from the law. The ordinance will be called the "Waste Storage Ordinance" rather than the "Manure Storage Ordinance."

In the amended ordinance, waste is defined as "manure, milking center waste and other organic waste generated by a livestock facility."