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Board authorizes joint EDPR letter for breach of contract

By Kendra Hennis 
The special meeting of the Douglas County Board was called to order at 9 a.m. on Monday, August 2 with members Hettinger and Morris absent. The meeting was called by State’s Attorney Kate Watson and Douglas County Engineer Jim Crane to discuss possible litigation with the board in reference to EDPR and the Harvest Ridge Wind Farm. The board immediately moved to closed session at 9:02 a.m. until 10:02 a.m. Upon return to open session, board member Luth made a motion to “authorize Chairman Munson jointly with Murdock and Newman Township Road Districts to develop and send a letter on behalf of Douglas County to EDPR for breach of contract regarding the road use agreement”, which was unanimously passed. 

The board then moved to questions from the press and visitors. Jim Allen asked for a timeline from the board after this letter is sent. Watson stated that at this time the board will be waiting on a response from EDPR before moving forward or considering possible litigation. She also noted that they were expecting EDPR to be receiving their letter within 24 hours of the meeting. Allen additionally asked why Mr. Hettinger and Morris were absent from the meeting. County Clerk Judi Pollock said she was unsure for Mr. Morris but that Mr. Hettinger was on vacation. It was then asked about current drainage issues happening and what the engineer’s plan was for that. Crane explained that there is currently difficulty with drainage throughout the 28 and a half miles that were damaged. He said that they have an extensive and ever-changing plan for repairs, but they are all being updated and added into the contract. In closing, Luth said that “the board asks for patience, we have very good legal counsel and this is a process and we are trying to follow the process. So don’t become frustrated with us, we have your best interest at heart, I fully believe. Give us time to develop what is going to happen.” The board then adjourned at 10:09 a.m. until their August 18 meeting.

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