GIRARD — The Crawford County Commission approved a $36,000 contract with Earle’s Engineering and Inspection, Inc. at its Friday meeting for the first phase of a project to relocate a sewer line in the Franklin area to facilitate work by the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) on the Highway 69 expansion project.

“It basically sets out the scope, covers meetings,” said County Counselor Jim Emerson, “they’ll do three sets of final drawings to give to KDOT and really that’s all their role is, is for the design phase, to make sure that that’s in a format acceptable to KDOT, and then KDOT will take it from there on the bidding phase and inspection, so we did not include that in the contract.”

The commission was informed by KDOT in March that Crawford County would be responsible for the sewer line relocation work, which could cost somewhere around $1 million and has to be done relatively quickly.

Commissioner Bruce Blair asked Emerson on Friday if he would try to set up a meeting with KDOT as the part of the project that Earle’s Engineering is handling for the county gets closer to completion, and Emerson said he would.

“Well, this is going to be an interesting process to be a part of and watch,” said Commissioner Tom Moody.

“Interesting is one word for it,” said Commissioner Jeremy Johnson.

Moody said a good thing about getting the work done was that the expansion of Highway 69 has been planned for so long.

“It’s needed,” Moody said, “and I won’t talk about the bad part, but we’ve just got to see that this moves forward, and we’re doing what we have to do.”