January 15, 2009

County resolves section line issue

The first Oliver County Commission meeting of 2009 came in with enough business to match the winter’s record snowfall.

Commissioners decided to close two miles of section line to public access at their monthly meeting Jan. 8. The line runs west of the Van Oosting Dam in the northeastern part of the county. It can no longer be driven on as a continuous trail.

Bruce Van Oosting brought the request to the commission last month. At that time he explained the reservoir had been a favorite fishing and camping area, but the fish had died, and there was no longer any recreational purpose for going there. He said the dam was dangerous to drive over, and sometimes people left a mess in the area. Sheriff Dave Hilliard concurred the area was a problem for his department at times.

Van Oosting had proposed closing the eastern access to the dam also. Meri Martin, a nearby landowner, and Duane Price, who farms Martin’s land in the area, appeared to protest closing the section line. A letter from Leland Ogden was also presented opposing closing it.

"It’s not in my best interests to close that line," Martin said.

She explained closing the section line would cause problems accessing her land.

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