Supervisors test new public comment format

Tama County Administration Building, 104 W State St., Toledo, Iowa. TELEGRAPH FILE PHOTO

The biggest issue discussed at the May 1 Tama County Board of Supervisors meeting was not wind turbines or solar, but the new public comments format. An idea thought up by Supervisor Faircloth, the public comments portion of the meeting was changed from an open conversation to a more muted exchange.

Any citizen wishing to talk was to address everyone from the front of the room with only five minutes slated for each person wishing to comment, a large timer was utilized so that no one went over. Once at the front of the room, the citizen was to recite their name and where they live before making their remarks.

At no point were the supervisors supposed to comment or reply to the comments given. The half an hour between 9 and 9:30 a.m. saw multiple citizens stand to address the supervisors, who sat silent and blinking. The large silences that filled the room between comments were only broken by the occasional cough, whisper, or supervisor scratching his head with a letter opener. After the meeting adjourned, a verbal altercation broke out between two of the supervisors about how the public comment section had gone.

The new Tama County Engineer reported PCI will start work on the Deer Creek bridge, located on the west end of Toledo, on May 22. Blades are prepping areas that are getting dust control as well as rock is being hauled to dust control areas. The brush crew is starting the spraying season.

Courtney Watson was appointed as Death Investigator for Tama County on the recommendation of local Medical Examiner David Bethel.

The supervisors approved the increase of Iowa Public Agency Investment Trust limit from $4 million to $6 million.

Ty Rosenberger was approved to buy the Tax Sale Certificate of 205 W Marshall St. LOT 26 for $1,530.

Claims totaling $626,197.65 were approved.