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Engineer asks for patience

Staff writer

The county’s newly hired engineer hopes people will be patient. The county’s poorly maintained roads and recent flood damage have left him with plenty on his plate.

“We need to use the resources we have to fix the problems in priority,” Brice Goebel said. “There’s so much to be fixed, it’s not going to be fixed right away.”

At issue, Goebel said, is the fact that the county has 1,600 miles of road, 200 of which are paved, 600 of which are rock, and 800 of which are dirt. The county has limited resources, in terms of equipment, help, and money.

“That’s what we have to deal with,” Goebel said.

Recent flooding might be a catalyst for disaster relief funds, but that has to be decided after full documentation is made of flood damage. The department is busy documenting damage now. Federal or state agencies could provide assistance with the expense of repairing flood damage, but it isn’t yet known how much money will be provided.

“Roads are one thing,” Goebel said. “Bridges add more to it.”

After assessing flood damage, Goebel said he and the road and bridge department will draw up a long-range plan for needed repairs.

In the meantime, he hopes county residents will give the road and bridge department a chance to get things turned around, he said.

“We’ve got to keep paved and rock roads going, and got to work on dirt roads,” he said.

Goebel has worked for Kansas Department of Transportation in Dighton and Marion. He has also worked for King Construction in Hesston, Koss Construction in Topeka, the Nebraska Department of Roads, M.J. Hughes Construction in Tulsa, Bruce Davis Construction in Emporia, and LPR Construction in Loveland, Colorado. He and his family have lived in Marion County since 1996.

Last modified June 12, 2019

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