Delays continue with Tama Co. zoning board appointment

Toledo resident Duane Backen pictured last Friday, Feb. 24 at Traer City Hall while working as a poll worker during special election satellite voting. Backen’s appointment to the Tama Co. Zoning Commission was tabled by the board of supervisors this past week. PHOTO BY RUBY F. MCALLISTER

TOLEDO — Feelings were high, and voices were higher at the regular Tama County Board of Supervisors meeting on Monday, Feb 27. The subject at hand was appointing local Tama/Toledo resident Duane Backen to the zoning board.

Applications to be considered for a position on the zoning board were supposed to be in on Sept. 16 of last year. Multiple attendees of Monday’s meeting said to have applied before this deadline. None of them were called, considered, or interviewed.

Backen, who seemed to have the OK from all three board members, only got his application in on Feb. 20 of this year. One of the many reasons citizens of Monday’s meeting believe Backen to be an unsuitable candidate for the zoning board is his gender. Iowa law states that there must be a gender balance on the boards of local government – the current zoning board is comprised of five men.

“The morals of this county are swirling in the toilet,” said Jon Winkelpleck, a local citizen and anti-wind turbine activist.

Whether it is gender equality, or when the application was received, this candidate for the zoning board did not cut the mustard for the group of locals squeezed into the Board of Supervisors meeting room on Monday. The supervisors ultimately decided to table approving Backen to a later date.

Other business

The engineer discussed the Deer Creek bridge on US Business 30 west of Toledo being replaced starting possibly April 3, with a projected end date of around Halloween. Also, the hauling of rock and the soon possibility of contracting that out.

The American Rescue Plan Act grant resolution was approved so the county could hire a new website developer, Neapolitan Labs.