During a public hearing after their regular meeting Monday morning, the Wells County Commissioners established a cumulative bridge fund.
Despite advertising the public meeting ahead of time, only two people sat in the audience for public comment.
Wells County Engineer Nate Rumschlag said establishing a cumulative bridge fund would help in many ways, including by creating a savings account and creating a revenue stream that will allow more flexibility for other capital projects and allow local matches for federal aid projects.
Rumschlag said in about five years, the account could accumulate a balance of a $1 million with any of the tax rates presented, all of which were below $.03 per $100 of assessed valuation.
“All of those are good things,” he said. “It won’t change the status quo immediately, but we are taking a step in the right direction.”
The commissioners settled on a rate of $0.025.
Both of the people in the audience said they think establishing a cumulative bridge fund is long overdue.
“Wells County has traditionally underfunded its infrastructure needs over years and years and years,” said Bill Morris, who participated in the discussion as a citizen but was there on behalf of Wells County Voice. “You basically have a county infrastructure that was designed for the 1940s and 1950s.”