Washington Evening Journal
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Neighbors Growing Together | Sep 18, 2014

Teen wants to fix tombstones

By Linda Wenger | Jun 17, 2014
Photo by: Linda Wenger Washington County Supervisor Jack Seward Jr. gave his final update on the Richmond and Rubio sanitary sewer projects, Tuesday morning. Last week, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources accepted the completion of the project.

A volunteer from Dutch Creek Township asked the Washington County Board of Supervisors to approve a resolution for a Washington County Riverboat Foundation grant application. The board did so Tuesday morning.
According to County Auditor Dan Widmer, the volunteer couldn’t attend the supervisors’ meeting because her summer job is babysitting a set of triplets. Widmer said that Madison Sheetz is a teenager who wants to use a $2,000 mini grant to clean up and repair tombstones in the Tyrone Cemetery.
Sheetz wrote on the mini grant application, “On Memorial weekend, my family puts the flags on the veterans’ graves in Tyrone Cemetery. I have seen firsthand how the tombstones in the Tyrone Cemetery have deteriorated over the years. Until 2010, it had been 73 years since anyone had been buried in the Tyrone Cemetery, so there are not a lot of families who are in the area to take care of their loved one’s tombstones.”
Widmer said that the teenager hopes to make the project a communitywide project. He said that about $5,500 might be needed to complete the work, and that she may apply for future mini grants to get the cemetery done. That estimate includes repairing 68 gravestones.
Sheetz came to the board of supervisors with the grant application after finding out that Dutch Creek Township doesn’t have the funds to make the repairs. She states that she would use the proper supplies and techniques to do the work.
In other business, the board:
• approved a five-lot minor subdivision from an existing parcel in an unincorporated area of Washington County known as “The Swamp Subdivision,” requested by Ronnie E. and Cynthia K. Hershberger. They may construct a building on one of the lots. There are no plans to build houses, and one of the lots will be used as a private street;
• approved a motion to seek full reimbursement from Steve and Rebecca Klopfenstein for their septic system, which was installed by the Regional Utility Service Systems (RUSS) a few years ago. They have made monthly payments on the system to RUSS. Since the county withdrew the Richmond and Rubio community systems from RUSS, the Klopfensteins offered to pay $8,000 to the county for a system that cost $16,625.84; and
• acknowledged a personnel change request from the county attorney’s office.  County Attorney Larry Brock said he has hired Jennifer Lerner as assistant county attorney. She will start later this month. She has had some experience as a prosecutor, and has represented the city of Muscatine.

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