Large rock mass removal has taken longer than anticipated. Crews apologize for the delay and appreciate your patience as this work is completed. The week of July 17, crews on the shoulders of the roadway Completed final rock scaling and removal, clean-up activities, including ditch clearing and removing temporary barriers from the rock wall.
Traffic control remained in place throughout the week. While traffic control was present, travelers anticipated delays of 15 to 25 minutes through the project area. Work was scheduled from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., with lane closures present 24/7 until project completion. Traffic control will be removed when crews are no longer present in the project area.
For more details and a map of the project area, please visit the project overview webpage.
Courtesy of Montana Department of Transportation
The Current State of The Green Box Garbage Sites
Submitted by Lincoln County Health Department
As of July 14, 2023, there are 3 county landfills and 16 green box sites throughout the county. Libby and Eureka Landfills are open 6 days a week (closed Sunday) and Troy Landfill is open 5 days a week (closed Sunday Monday). All three landfills are closed on state holidays. Most green box sites have electric fencing and mats due to bear activity but are currently open 24 hours a day.
Most sites are emptied several times a week at the minimum and are emptied more as needed. Specifically in the Libby area, Fisher River and Libby Creek are emptied every day. In the Troy area, Savage Lake and city of Troy are emptied every day. Yaak Hill is emptied 6 days per week. Hecla site is emptied 4 days per week and 4th of July and Upper Yaak are emptied twice per week. In the Eureka area, the green boxes just outside of the Eureka landfill, Fortine, Trego and Glen Lake are all emptied every day. Pinkham Creek and Rexford are emptied 4 days per week and West Kootenai is emptied twice per week.
Increased costs and budget constraints, as well as continued and frequent misuse and vandalism at sites, have pushed the county to reevaluate the green box sites. We recognize the importance of convenient disposal options, and our goal is to continue to offer them. Green box sites are for household trash only. The landfills take many other items for no extra fee, including furniture, appliances, tires, cardboard recycling, ect.
How Green Box Sites are Funded: They are not funded independently as they are considered part of the solid waste management system. When refuse assessments were set in 2008, it was enough funding to cover the landfills and green box sites. Today, with increased costs, these sites must be revaluated as we must prioritize the landfill operations in order to manage solid waste generated in Lincoln County while recognizing the need for convenient disposal options.
Proposed Changes To The Green Box Sites: The approved proposal includes consolidating sites by closing Pinkham, 4th of July, Savage Lake, Glen Lake and the site directly outside of the Eureka Landfill. This will leave Happy’s Inn, Libby Creek, Fisher River, City of Troy, Hecla, Yaak Hill, Upper Yaak, Trego, Fortine, West Kootenai, and Rexford open. All of these sites will be open specific hours, and most will be manned by roving site attendants. This option will increase the solid waste budget by approximately $200,000 annually and more than $100,000 for initial set up. This budget increase will include personnel, vehicle and maintenance costs and an attendant shack at Libby Creek.
This is the least increase in cost to the taxpayers among the options considered. Refuse assessments must increase $15 per year to implement this proposed option and support landfill operations. In addition, we are looking for improvements at Troy and Eureka Landfills to ensure the most convenient access. These changes will be implemented over the next few months.
Why Are Sites Being Closed: In order to stay within budget, many options were considered. Closing 5 Sites will allow for the other sites to grow and be monitored. Distance to other sites and/or landfills was considered when deciding which sites to consolidate.
Why Cant The County Just Hire Attendants For All of The Sites: This option, to keep all 16 sites open and manned, would cost the county an additional 2 million dollars per year which would double the total solid waste management budget.
Joe Nichols to Headline Big Sky Bash
Submitted by Curtis Brooner, CARD Clinic
Multi-platinum country artist, Joe Nichols will headline CARD’s 10th Anniversary Big Sky Bash concert on Saturday, Aug. 5. Nichols’ first smash hit was “The Impossible” in 2002 and he has since had over 14 top 40 singles. Other chart-topping Nichols’ hits have included “Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off”, “Brokenhearstville”, “Gimmie That Girl”, and “Sunny and 75”. At age 46, Nichols continues to release new music with his most recent album featuring “Good Day for Living” released in February of 2022.
The show will be held a J. Neils Park in Libby starting at 6:30 pm with opening and after party bands. Gates open at 5:30, and food, beverages, and camping will be available onsite. Tickets are $35 in advance or $45 at the door. They are available online at libbyasbestos.org or at select outlets in Libby, Troy, and Eureka including the CARD Clinic, Libby and Eureka Chambers of Commerce, Montana Machine, and First Montana Bank in Troy.
Please note that purchasing online tickets from any other site may be a scam, so go through CARD’s website, which links to Eventgroove.com, the only authorized online ticket distributor.
VIP tickets are available for $60 in advance or $70 the day of the show. VIP tickets offer a preferred seating area separated from the general admission area, a separate bar area, and snack tables. There will also be a VIP-only raffle drawing for an autographed guitar signed by Joe Nichols and meet and greet sessions with both the opening band (Jay Snow and the Tone Keepers) and the after party band (The Zach Cooper Band).
The concert venue is festival style so all attendees should plan to bring their own seats. No cameras are allowed unless they are for media and preauthorized by the band. No outside food or drinks or glass containers are allowed. No pets or weapons will be allowed. Children 5 and under are free with a paid adult and must always be supervised.
We look forward to seeing you at the show and if you have any questions please feel free to give CARD a call at (406) 293-9274.
LOR Celebrates One Year Anniversary
By Moira Blazi, of the Montanian
When the Libby chapter of LOR celebrated their one year anniversary in June, local director Tabatha Viergutz told the Montanian that it was one year exactly since LOR (Livability, Opportunity, Responsibility) created their first “YES” , a grant to fix up the basketball court and playground adjacent to the Old Central School administration building. “From that moment on I have loved every single “yes”! Viergutz told the Montanian. Since that time Viergutz has helped facilitate 36 grants, totaling over $350.000, going to 43 local “champions” , those individuals responsible for the many and varied programs being supported. In addition, LOR has made possible another $25,000 in funding from other grant sources, facilitated and assisted by LOR grant writers.
“It’s been an amazing year”, Viergutz told the Montanian, “it’s such a corny thing to say, but I love my job! And the thing I love the most about it is that I am learning so much!” she added with a big smile. What she has been learning about is the tremendous talent, creativity and commitment revealed every day by the thousands of folks who volunteer their time to help our community. “Libby is the second smallest community that LOR serves, Viergutz explained, “but we’ve had such a great response, that our Libby program is actually one of highest funded projects. We first started, only a year ago with a $40,000 budget, within the first two weeks I asked them to double that, which they did!”
LOR does not fund personnel or operating costs , as it has been conceived as a temporary shot in the arm for small rural communities, it helps in the form of providing real, material things. While many of the organizations helped are private non-profits, much of the funding has gone to help local government , especially local schools, to augment their strained budgets and so better serve the community.
Local recipients include practically every non-profit organization in Libby, funding everything from Wi-Fi access at Libby dam, to American Legion Honor Guard, and Libby volunteer fire dept uniforms. Many grants have been utilized by the Libby school district and others to purchase, repair and improve all kinds of sports-related equipment including stadium scoreboards and concession stands, cross country ski equipment, volleyball ankle guards, wrestling coaching, ball field grooming equipment, and tennis courts. The Libby senior center received funds for a new supply closet and help for meals on wheels, heritage museum got handicap accessible, and the community thrift store got a new door. No project is too small or ordinary.
“ Because I am an artist myself, I really loved being able to help the Central Schools art program with art supplies that they never would have had if it wasn’t for LOR” said Viergutz. Funds have been used to promote teen mental health and affordable housing. LOR has been everywhere and very busy this past year. “The best part , and I think the real beauty of the LOR program is seeing that lightbulb go on when folks realize that they don’t have to write the grant” , she added.
Viergutz is already busy with new grant applications , she is excited that this year, LOR will be able to fund individuals as well as organizations, promising to make LORs second year in Libby even more successful, if that is possible. For more information, or to apply call Tabitha Viergutz @ 406-250-5218, e-mail her @ email@example.com, or follow her on Facebook.