Minden refunds $50,000 for traffic light to fire district

For almost 11 years, the Town of Minden has been holding a $50,000 contribution from the East Fork Fire & Paramedic Districts for a traffic signal at Highway 88 and County Road.

On Wednesday, Bobby Wartgow, deputy chief/emergency medical services, asked the town for a refund.

"We're not asking for any interest earned monies, as until very recently we were all under the belief that the signal would be constructed," Wartgow said in a letter to the board.

Board members approved the refund.

After years of debate over the best way to manage traffic at the busy intersection, the Nevada Department of Transportation is installing a traffic roundabout.

The $500,000 price tag is to be funded 95 percent by the federal government and 5 percent by the state.

"I've been looking at that $50,000 in the account for 11 years," Wartgow told the town board Wednesday. "I can buy an ambulance tomorrow with that and a community block grant."

He said the district would be happy to contribute in the future if a signal is warranted.

"The traffic impact of the station had not been as great as some people feared," he said.

The busy intersection provides access to Douglas High School, the Carson Valley Swim Center, East Fork Fire & Paramedic Districts station, the library, a Montessori school, a meeting house, fitness center, several office buildings and the Westwood subdivision.

Even though a traffic signal is cheaper, the state determined that the volume of traffic at the intersection qualified for a roundabout.

The fire and paramedic districts' contribution was a condition for approval of their station on County Road in the mid-1990s.

Construction is to begin after school is dismissed in June and should be complete before Douglas High School students return in August.

A parents meeting with transportation officials on the roundabout will be 7 p.m. Wednesday at Douglas High School Room 601, near the soccer fields.

The intersection is now controlled by stop signs on County Road and Mahogany Drive.


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