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Newly-christened County Chairman Keith Ellis received an unsettling letter from the state just more than two weeks into his term in office. The letter said the bridge on Brown Bridge Road over the Yellow River would have to be closed to bus and large truck traffic if structural repairs weren’t made within 90 days.

Given the importance of that road, the bridge’s proximity to Newton High School and the fact there is no cross street to use to easily circumvent that area, the closing of that bridge would be a major blow to the county’s traffic system and a big inconvenience for residents.

Ellis quickly got on the phones and spoke with experts in the county and school system and figured out that the bridge would have to be fixed. Luckily, the engineers assigned to analyze the project realized that the bridge could be repaired easily and quickly.

We applaud Ellis and the county staff for their quick thinking and action. Though the repairs have not yet been made, we’ve been assured they will happen soon.

We know this bridge is not the only one that’s not in the best of shape. We’re glad to see the county is working on a solution to the more serious issue with the Mount Tabor Road bridge, and we urge our officials to continue to inspect all of our possible problem bridges and do whatever is possible to bring them up to good condition. We don’t want to find ourselves in danger of losing another main artery in the county.