Onamia eyesore to be cleaned up

A road right of way, adjacent to an eyesore property south of Onamia, is scheduled for cleanup this spring to prepare for a road widening and paving project on Mille Lacs County Road 25.
The five-acre parcel, once owned by the late Jim Beehler, has numerous old mobile homes with tires and possible other items stored inside, and some of this is on the right of way. Mille Lacs County Land Services Director Michele McPherson has also informed the Mille Lacs County Board that the property has scrap metal, wood, mattresses and other items that must be removed from the right of way.
McPherson requested proposals for the cleanup of the right of way portion next to the property and received five responses. The board, at the recommendation of McPherson, chose the bid of $14,520 from Bandow Auto Salvage, Wahkon, to complete the job by May 1 of this year. The Bandow proposal was not the lowest of the five bids, but McPherson explained that because Bandow gave a fixed price of $780 for removing the old tires, no matter their number, she felt it is the best bid.
The other bids estimated on a per tire basis, and it isn’t known how many tires there are to remove from the right of way. The tires are either covered by snow or stacked inside the mobile homes.
The Bandow bid lists eight mobile homes that will have to be removed from the right of way and 10 dumpsters that will be needed to remove their contents.
Bandow estimated the company will have to remove 400 passenger tires, 200 truck tires, five tractor tires, four mattresses and a pallet of stacked concrete blocks.
McPherson told the county board that Bradbury Township supervisors have been watching with interest what happens to the Beehler parcel, which is in tax forfeiture. That means the county has custody of it, but the state has the title. The county is not going to clean up the rest of that property, McPherson said. She told the board that it will be sold “as-is” and will likely contain a condition requiring the new owner to properly clean up the property. The county already had a well sealed on the parcel.
County Commissioner Genny Reynolds asked what will be done about any possible asbestos or other prohibited materials in the trailers that are to be removed. McPherson said the county will have to hire an approved contractor to inspect and abate those materials. It costs $250 for each inspection plus $12 per sample, and all this has to be done before the mobile homes are removed, McPherson said.

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