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Douglas County Public Works is organized into six divisions

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of letters the Echo Press is publishing as part of national County Government Month.

To the editor:

Douglas County Public Works was created in 1991 by combining the Highway Department, County Surveyor, Parks, County Ditches and Agricultural Inspection. The department is organized into six divisions, which are Administration, Engineering, Highway Maintenance, Survey and GIS, Parks, and Drainage/Agricultural Inspection.

The Public Works facility is located at 526 Willow Drive in Alexandria with highway maintenance facilities located in Brandon, Kensington and Miltona.

Public Works has a total of 42 full time employees and one part time employee. Seasonal employees are also hired to assist with increased summer activities.

The Public Works accountant and three employees provide the accounting, clerical and custodial duties for Public Works and are also responsible for the Central Fueling Facility.

The Assistant Public Works director oversees five engineering technicians whose primary activities include highway design and construction inspection for an average annual construction program of approximately $4 million.

The Maintenance superintendent and 21 maintenance employees provide summer and winter maintenance on the 550-mile county highway system.

The County surveyor supervises four survey technicians and the GIS coordinator. The main responsibilities of this division are the Public Land Survey System, mapping and the Rural Addressing System.

The Parks superintendent and two employees operate and maintain Kensington Rune Stone Park, Spruce Hill Park, Lake Chippewa Park, Lake Brophy Park, Curt Felt Memorial Park and Lake L’Homme Dieu Beach. This division also maintains the Central Lakes Trail under a contract with the Minnesota DNR.

Our Drainage/Agricultural inspector provides administrative and maintenance services for the 19 public drainage systems totaling approximately 200 miles of ditches. The agricultural inspection duties include the enforcement of noxious weeds, herbicides and pesticides, and seed inspection under the direction of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.