Monday morning's County Commission meeting had commissioners addressing a local controversy that popped up on social media last week, as well as an issue with a FEMA payout.
Commissioners, as well as local media, had been hit with worries from citizens about the possibility of closing the end of Seminol Ln. in Laquey and cutting off access to the Gasconade in that spot.
Commissioners reported numerous phone calls as well as a social media post that had been shared, copied, and pasted, and re-shared multiple times. The post was originated by Helen Warren and requested that locals make one another aware that there may be an attempt to close the road at that location, commonly called Black's Fjord by locals.
Commissioners stated that they would not vote to close the road and had no plans to do so. Video of commissioners' statements is available on the Daily Guide's Facebook page, as it was broadcast live at the time of the meeting.
"There's not a body on this commission that would vote for that," Western District Commissioner Rick Zweerink said. The road in question is in Zweerink's district.
Later in the meeting, after the Daily Guide had ended its live broadcast, Zweerink brought up an issue about a payout from FEMA.
According to Zweerink, FEMA is denying a $300,000 reimbursement to the county on a claim because of gravel trucks. The county says it has always had five gravel trucks, but FEMA insisted that only two gravel trucks should have been used.
Zweerink said that "this is their way of getting out of paying" and that it would be impossible to haul the amount of gravel needed using only two trucks. According to Zweerink, FEMA is claiming the county used excessive labor.
"Two trucks could haul for 100 years and never haul all that gravel, or 50 years for sure," Zweerink said.
He also said that the county told FEMA from the very beginning that they would be using five trucks to haul the gravel, but FEMA put down two in their paperwork. Zweerink said FEMA was told "over and over" that was wrong.
Zweerink said you couldn't use two trucks to haul "1,000 loads of gravel."
"They set up these little gotcha things... We quoted five, everybody quoted five, but they wrote it for two.. now we got to appeal," Zweerink said.
The commission plans to appeal the ruling and talk with Vicky Hartzler's office about the problem because Hartzler has taken special notice of issues with FEMA, including introducing legislation to instigate change.
Difficulties getting reimbursment payments from FEMA from the last three floods has caused the county to have financial issues. When asked why certain roads have not been repaired, commissioners often reply that there isn't any money to make the repairs.