County transportation notes

County gives $15K to river crossing

The Washington County Board of Commissioners continued its support of the pro-bridge Coalition for the St. Croix Crossing with a $15,000 appropriation to the group Tuesday.

State law allows the county to spend general fund money to incorporated state groups or societies that promote and advertise the economic and agricultural resources of the county.

The Coalition is a non-profit group made up of business, labor, government and community leaders that promotes construction of the new St. Croix River bridge.

 Board OKs medical transport pact

Washington County will work with seven other metro-area counties on providing non-emergency medical transportation services for residents eligible for medical assistance and Minnesota care under an agreement approved Tuesday by the Board of Commissioners.

The county will join Anoka, Chisago, Dakota, Hennepin, Isanti, Ramsey and Sherburne counties will provide non-emergency medical transportation required by health care services receiving Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Servies funds.

CMS requires those agencies to provide access to medical appointments, which includes interpreters and transportation.

Washington County was among several metro counties that decided to work together after the state Legislature in 2009 changed laws governing medical transportation and ended state-funded service in 11 metro-area counties.

In the first seven months of 2012, county recipients of the service made an average of 2,909 trips per month by an average of 287 users. Overall service use is down slightly this year, with the primary factor of increased enrollment in managed care programs.

Non-emergency medical transportation costs are paid with state or federal funds. Service provider Medical Transportation Management is paid a $5.54 administrative fee per trip, part of which may be refunded with federal participation funds depending on services provided. Base on use, the county’s 2013 expense is an estimated $98,500.

Repairs to CSAH 10, 10th Avenue, in Oakdale due to unexpected shifts in subgrade soil will cost $175,000 and will start and finish this fall, a Washington County Public Works official told the Board of Commissioners Tuesday.

County Engineer Wayne Sandberg said the repair area is the eastbound lane of 10th Street from Helmo to Inwood Avenues. The original work was done in July.

Sandberg said the uneven shift in pavement occurred during the original project. Analysis by WCPW staff, private soil engineers and the state Department of Transportation identified the cause of the shifting and recommended a solution, he added.

The shifting was caused by a combination of high water, sandy soil and vibratory compaction of the asphalt road surface, Sandberg said. The vibratory compaction drew water up under the road through the sand, causing the sandy soil sun-grade to temporarily lose its strength and the road to settle, he added.

After the water drained back from the road surface, the soil further compacted and further settled, according to Sandberg.

The repair project calls for grinding the CSAH 10 road surface flat and paving the road using a different compaction method, Sandburg said. A consultant will be onsite during the project to monitor the process, he added.

Sandburg said the work will be paid with state aid funds.