Lewis County Commission backs megaload shipments

By Kathy Hedberg of the Tribune

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

NEZPERCE – The Lewis County commissioners echoed their counterparts in Idaho County Monday in expressing support for the transportation of oversized loads along U.S. Highway 12.

The commissioners approved a resolution nearly identical to one passed last week by the Idaho County commissioners. In it, the commissioners acknowledged the vital part trucking plays in the economy of the county and their unqualified support for allowing the Idaho Transportation Department to decide whether trucking along the scenic route should be allowed.

Months ago, Lewis County Clerk Cathy Larson said, representatives from ConocoPhillips met with the commissioners and outlined plans to haul four megaloads over the highway to an oil refinery in Montana.

“Conoco met with the board and made a presentation,” Larson said. “Our guys were for it from the very beginning.”

Three Idaho County residents have filed suit and are attempting to stop the movement of the mega-
loads, citing the disruption to business and quality of life along the highway.

In other business, the commissioners sent a letter to the Idaho Department of Commerce supporting a quest by the city of Craigmont for a $500,000 community development block grant that would be used to build a Craigmont business park.

A business park, the commissioners said, would provide a much-needed opportunity for businesses to locate in Craigmont and open up jobs for local residents. It would also allow for clustering and business growth through synergies among the businesses that locate in a business park.

Hedberg may be contacted at [email protected] or (208) 983-2326.