This site only

County's Homepage

Meetings/Agendas/Minutes Video / Audio

Standing Committees

Ad-Hoc Committees

Contacts / Directions

Ordinances / Resolutions & Proclamations








Minutes of the DeKalb County Highway Committee
November 7, 2013
6 p.m.



Note: These minutes are not official until approved by the Highway
Committee at a subsequent meeting. Please refer to the meeting minutes
when these minutes are approved to obtain any changes to these minutes.


A meeting of the Highway Committee of the DeKalb County Board was held on Thursday, November 7, 2013 at 6:00pm in the Conference Room of the DeKalb County Highway Department, DeKalb, Illinois.
Chairman Gudmunson called the meeting to order at 6:00pm. Committee members present were Mr. Deverell, Mr. Frieders, Mr. Jones, Mr. O'Barski and Vice Chair Pietrowski. Mr. Johnson was absent. Others present were Mr. Nathan Schwartz, County Engineer, Wayne Davey, Support Services Manager, Mr. Anthony Cvek, County Board Member, Mr. Greg Millburg, Farm Bureau and Mr. Raymond Hambaugh, DeKalb County Citizen.


Motion made by Mr. O'Barski and seconded by Mr. Jones to approve the minutes of the regular October 3, 2013 meeting and the October 16, 2013 special meeting. The motion to approve the minutes carried unanimously.



Motion made by Mr. O'Barski and seconded by Mr. Frieders to approve the agenda as presented. Discussion followed recommending item number 3 on the agenda be moved up to item number 1. Vice Chair Pietrowski moved and Mr. Deverell second to amend the agenda as discussed. Motion carried. The motion made to approve the agenda as amended passed unanimously.






Mr. Schwartz presented his review of the engineering study and traffic study to the Committee on Mr. Hambaugh's request presented during the October meeting of the Committee. Mr. Schwartz indicated he had reviewed the accident history of that portion of Rich Road, approximately between White Oak Drive and Waterman Street, that is of concern to Mr. Hambaugh and other residents in that area. In addition to the accident review, Mr. Schwartz also reviewed pedestrian traffic, road side parking, line of sight issues, children in the area and traffic flow. Nothing in his study would indicate that the current statutory speed limit of 55 mph on this portion of Rich Road is experiencing any problems or creating unsafe traffic conditions that would justify an altered speed in this area. Mr. Schwartz indicated, with that said, he would be in favor of placing a residential area warning sign in this area with a suggested speed of 45mph to alert drivers that a situation is coming up that may need their attention. Mr. Hambaugh addressed the Committee at this time stating the Committee should also consider the direct input from the residents living in this area by way of their signed petition, the fact that there are 17 access points along this section of roadway having the potential to cause a safety problem and the fact that Coltonville and Bethany Roads are similar to Rich Road and all have 45mph and 40mph speed limits. He urged the Committee to be proactive and not wait for a serious accident before deciding to reduce the speed limit. Committee Members further discussed this issue and directed the County Engineer to place this item on the December Agenda for further discussion and any action deemed appropriate.


Mr. Schwartz provided an update on the Peace Road Safety study. He is currently reviewing all the accident data and cataloging them into categories by time of day, weather conditions, improvements made to the road in recent history and type of accident. It is a labor intensive project and will take some time to complete. For the study being conducted for the intersection of Somonauk Road and Suydam Road, Mr. Schwartz indicated he hoped to have that completed within the next couple of months for the Committee. In the meantime he has directed Operations to re-cut the rumble strips on Suydam Road at this intersection as well as Chicago Road and IL Route 23.


The annual tour of completed construction projects has been scheduled for November 13th. Due to lack of Committee members being available on that date, the County Engineer stated he would reschedule the tour for a later date to allow for the harvest to be complete.


The Highway Department will hold an Open House on November 21st from Noon to 3:00pm in recognition of 100 years of the County Highway System. Invitations will be going out shortly.


Mr. Schwartz provided the Committee with an update of the Transportation Improvement Progress Report.


- The Five Points Road Bridge is underway with the road being closed and the deck being removed.

- The Keslinger Road Bridge is still in negotiations. The County Engineer met with representatives of the Soybean Growers

Association and listened to their concerns of deteriorating bridges in the State of Illinois and in DeKalb County. Their concern is the need for their trucks to travel several miles out of their way to haul their grain to the appropriate storage facility when bridges are posted at lower than legal weights.

- The timber pile repairs to the three bridges in Shabbona Road District and Squaw Grove Road District is underway. The contractor is working on the Shabbona Grove Road Bridge and the Lee Road Bridge at the same time, hoping to have these two roads back open before Thanksgiving. Pritchard Road Bridge should be repaired and opened by mid- December.



Mr. Schwartz explained to the Committee that the Highway Department utilizes MFT funds to cover a portion of the maintainer's salaries and to rent our equipment. The equipment rental funds are then placed into the highway's general budget to cover the cost of new equipment purchases. MFT funds can be utilized for salaries as long as it is for work being performed on the roads. These funds cannot be utilized for salaries for work being performed in the shop area, such as repairing their equipment or working within the shop. The Highway Department utilizes MFT funds for the purchase of winter maintenance materials (salt). This provides salt for the County as well as 19 other government entities that purchase their material from the County. The County is expecting to spend approximately $200,000 for salt, with the remaining $300,000 being purchased by other agencies, who reimbursement the County. MFT funds being utilized for salaries has been estimated at $541,000 and $400,000 for equipment rental. In order for the Highway Department to spend MFT funds, the County Board must authorize the expenditure. The County Engineer recommended forwarding these resolutions to the full County Board recommending approval. A motion was made by Vice Chair Pietrowski and seconded by Mr. Frieders to forward both resolutions to the full County Board recommending approval. The motion passed unanimously.


ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Vice Chair Pietrowski shared some information about innovative products being tested in the U.K. and Netherlands that provide for glow-in-the-dark spray. This spray is used to illuminate highways as well as bike paths, replacing the need for street lighting. When applied, this spray can also alert drivers to changing road surface conditions. As temperatures drop, images can appear on the surface such as a snowflake indicating the possibility of frozen precipitation on the road surface.


Mr. O'Barski inquired if the County was in compliance when using Federal funds, ensuring a certain percentage of those funds were being designated for bike paths. Mr. Schwartz indicated the State is in the process of studying this requirement to see if there should be a certain percent designated for this use and if so what should that percent be. They are also looking to see if that requirement needs to be in the rural areas as well as the urban areas.



Chairman Gudmunson asked if there was any additional items that needed to be presented tonight and hearing none asked for a motion to adjourn. A motion was made by Mr. O'Barski and seconded by Mr. Deverell and the motion passed unanimously. The November 7, 2013 meeting was adjourned at 7:31pm.


Respectfully Submitted,




John Gudmunson