WRIGHT COUNTY BOARD MINUTES
APRIL 1, 2014
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Husom, Sawatzke, Daleiden, Potter and Borrell present.
Daleiden moved to approve the 3-25-14 County Board Minutes as presented. The motion was seconded by Potter and carried unanimously.
Petitions were accepted to the Agenda as follows: Consent Item C1, “Refer To Ways & Means Committee Discussion RE: Freedom Farm & The Lake Ida School House” (Mattice). Sawatzke moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Daleiden, carried 5-0.
The Consent Agenda was discussed. Borrell pulled for discussion Consent Item B1, Planning & Zoning, “Authorize Signature Of Board Chair On: A) 2013 Annual County Feedlot Officer and Performance Credit Report; and B) 2014/2015 County Feedlot Program Delegation Agreement and Work Plan.” On a motion by Sawatzke, second by Daleiden, all voted to approve the remainder of the Consent Agenda as amended:
1. Approval of Updated AWAIR (A Workplace Accident and Injury Reduction Program).
1. Refer To Ways & Means Committee Discussion RE: Freedom Farm & The Lake Ida School House.
Discussion followed on Consent Item B1, Planning & Zoning, “Authorize Signature Of Board Chair On: A) 2013 Annual County Feedlot Officer and Performance Credit Report; and B) 2014/2015 County Feedlot Program Delegation Agreement and Work Plan.” Borrell questioned the feedlot definition. He cited a situation involving a property owner with six chickens housed in a doghouse. As this was determined to be a feedlot, the doghouse had to be moved 100’ from the property line. Tracy Janikula, Feedlot Program Administrator, provided the following information:
Minnesota Rule 7020.0300 Definitions
Subpart 3. Animal feedlot. “Animal feedlot” means a lot or building or combination of lots and buildings intended for the confined feeding, breeding, raising, or holding of animals and specifically designed as a confinement area in which manure may accumulate, or where the concentration of animals is such that a vegetative cover cannot be maintained within the enclosure. For purposes of these parts, open lots used for the feeding and rearing of poultry (poultry ranges) shall be considered to be animal feedlots. Pastures shall not be considered animal feedlots under these parts.
Janikula said the County has a 100’ setback for all buildings housing livestock. The County Ordinance applies to the building itself. Borrell said the definition should be revisited at the State level. He did not feel the same definition should apply to a small operation. Borrell moved to approve Consent Item B1, seconded by Potter, carried 5-0.
Bob Hiivala, Auditor/Treasurer, introduced discussion on County Ditch 34 near Delano. The City of Delano previously petitioned the County for approval to outlet water into Ditch 34 from an industrial park. The request was approved based on certain criteria that would be met relating to rate and amount of discharge so the system is not impaired. The City also gave the County $20,000 for work on the Ditch system. Kerry Saxton, SWCD, has met with the City’s engineers. Today, he provided a map reflecting repairs that are needed on the Ditch and the location of the City’s proposed industrial park. Saxton said the flow from the industrial park is over what the tile can handle so the water will stack up. The City is re-working the discharge rate to possibly slow down the water coming from the site. The industrial park has been connected to the County tile already. Saxton suggested utilizing the funds from the City to look at possible repairs that are needed, including using a camera to scope the tile. The extent of the disrepair and the associated costs are unknown. If repair includes boring under TH 12, he estimated a cost of $50,000-$60,000. Records reflect there may be a County Ditch 2 System to the east, located within the City, but those records are unclear as to whether Ditch 2 was built. The intent is to investigate this possible System this spring. Saxton suggested if Ditch 2 does exist, it could take some pressure off from Ditch 34. An auto business also tiles into County Ditch 34. Identified repairs may also help that situation. Tile size in Ditch 34 ranges from 8” to 22”. The area of most concern beyond the industrial park has a 20” tile. Discussion followed on use of a camera to scope repairs. Borrell said the camera range may be limited to about 1000’ before having to re-enter at another location. Saxton said that would be in good conditions and when there is not a lot of water flow. He thought there would be a narrow window of time to accomplish this in the summer or fall.
The Ditch 34 System was established in the early 1900’s. Saxton could not recall a redetermination on this System but there may have been some small repairs. Problems occur once a tile is exposed. The tile coming from the industrial park will be open, and Saxton is unsure of the type of inlet that will be used. He suggested a guard in that situation that would be maintained by the City. Another option would be to have an open section for that part of the Ditch, but that would also need to be maintained.
Saxton recommended visiting the site as soon as there is an opportunity, proceeding with looking into repairs, and the hire of a contractor. He suggested utilizing contractors through the Highway Department. Whether the repairs come back to the Board would be dependent on the cost or if something major is involved. Saxton said the City has agreed to cut back the flow rates from the industrial park. However, there will be more flow to the Ditch because of the industrial park improvements. Repairs would not be made this spring because of the inability to bring heavy equipment in. The County needs to be ready to proceed when the opportunity to complete the repairs presents itself.
Borrell made a motion to authorize Saxton to proceed with looking into the repairs needed. Borrell said local contractors could be utilized as well. It was explained that annually, the Highway Department bids equipment/labor. It was suggested that the contractors on that list and the local contractors be reviewed as possible resources. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried unanimously.
Hiivala presented a trail easement request from the City of Monticello across a tax forfeit parcel in the Hillside Farm 3rd Addition (Lot 1, Block 1). Cathy Shuman, Monticello City Clerk, said the lot was made extra large to allow for the trail to cross the eastern part of it. The trail easement was not developed by the developer, so they are working to reduce it to writing at this time. There are drainage and utility easements in this area. The request is for a separate trail easement. The remaining portion of the lot will be buildable and turned back to the County. Sawatzke moved to approve the request, seconded by Potter, carried 5-0.
On a motion by Borrell, second by Daleiden, all voted to approve the claims as listed in the abstract, subject to audit, for a total of $316,164.73, with 169 vendors and 257 transactions.
Virgil Hawkins, Highway Engineer, requested the Board adopt a resolution approving Agency Agreement No. 05376 with MnDOT for exchange of Federal funds for State Aid funds between Wright County and Morrison County. Daleiden moved to adopt Resolution #14-12, seconded by Potter, carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Hawkins requested approval of Agreement No. 13-54 for CSAH 38 with the City of Annandale. The Agreement outlines the route designation change for CSAH 38 within the City limits of Annandale. This is one step in the process of redesignating the entire segment of CSAH 38 to CR 183, and then placing the CSAH designation on CR 136 in the future as a continuation of CSAH 3. This is consistent with the planned reconstruction in the 5-Year Plan. Daleiden moved to approve Agreement No. 13-54, seconded by Potter, carried unanimously.
Bill Swing, Information Technology Director, said they have advertised twice for the Network Analyst position in the Information Technology Department. His request is to hire the position at Step Six of the Local 320 Schedule. The candidate intermittently interned in the Wright County Information Technology Department in 2002-2003. Potter moved to authorize the hire at Step 6, seconded by Daleiden. Daleiden asked whether this will set precedence. Tammy Bigelow, Human Resources Director, did not foresee this as the position has been recruited for twice. The candidate is currently making more than the proposed salary. She viewed it as a reasonable request. Swing said that a Database Administrator was approved during the 2014 budget sessions. He suspects he may have a similar situation with that hire. Daleiden said the County has already realized savings with the Network Analyst position this year, as it was supposed to be hired around 1-01-14. The motion carried 5-0.
Lee Kelly, County Coordinator, said a Committee of The Whole Meeting was held on 3-27-14 on the future of transit in Wright County. The recommendation from that Meeting was to initiate negotiations with the Trailblazer Joint Powers Board. Kelly said the Trailblazer Board would like Wright County to come to an agreement in principle as soon as today, if possible, on the distribution of the local share and also Wright County’s representation on that Board. The offer extended to Wright County at the 3-27-14 Meeting was a Local Share Distribution breakdown of Sibley County (20%), McLeod County (45%), and Wright County (35%). Wright County’s share would be $210,000 based on the 2015 Local Share Target (operating expenses) at $600,000. The 3-27-14 Committee Of The Whole Meeting also included discussion on options for the Board seats on the Trailblazer Joint Powers Board. Options discussed included equal representation of each County or equal representation of each County plus a rotating member (rotate by County over time). Kelly said the Trailblazer Board Chair has requested that Wright County make a decision by 4-09-14.
Sawatzke said the recommendation from the Committee Of The Whole Meeting was to initiate negotiations with Trailblazer. What Kelly outlined today were specifics that he did not envision would occur by 4-09-14. Sawatzke said those specifics would be part of the negotiation process, along with other details such as what services Wright County could select.
Borrell said he agreed with that. He made a motion to appoint Potter and Sawatzke to serve on the negotiating committee. He indicated that Kelly could be a part of those discussions if desired. The motion was seconded by Daleiden. Borrell said it took years for Sibley and McLeod Counties to work out their Joint Powers Agreement, and the same is true for Wright and Sherburne Counties. He did not support rushing this process. He recommended that Potter and Sawatzke work toward having something in place so there is service on 7-01-14, at least to the current level of service. Negotiations can continue from there. Husom supported the Board agreeing on a couple of the points being discussed today. Her concern is that she does not want to lose additional time in the process. Borrell said cities have a large stake financially and they need to be involved and provide input. Husom referenced the 3-27-14 Committee Of The Whole Meeting and the letters of support from the cities to proceed with Trailblazer. She did not feel the County would be rubber stamping anything. Kelly said given the comments at today’s meeting on putting together a negotiating committee, he feels it is implied that the County it is going to be a player. Sawatzke said it is the County’s desire to be a player. Negotiations will dictate whether that will be the end result.
Sawatzke said discussion occurred at the 3-27-14 Committee Of The Whole Meeting on whether the County could contract through the end of the year to allow time for negotiations. The routes and cost would remain the same. Sawatzke supports that action. Husom said she is appreciative that Sibley and McLeod Counties are working to include Wright County.
Potter asked Gary Ludwig, Trailblazer Transit Executive Director, whether the motion will be sufficient for Trailblazer to proceed. Ludwig responded that the Trailblazer Board is interested in whether this venture will be with the County as opposed to the cities. He could not speak on behalf of the Trailblazer Board with regard to agreements or contracts. He thought the Trailblazer Board’s intent was to pick up the service in Wright County but to contract with MnDOT. It will be up to the Trailblazer Board and the attorneys to figure out whether this will evolve into a contract with Wright County. There is a lot involved with the transition into Wright County (facilities, vehicles, and capital investments). Ludwig said his personal perspective is that without having an overall agreement in place, it may hinder the ability to function properly in Wright County. Ludwig said the Trailblazer Board believes it will take some time to come to agreement on the details of the Joint Powers Agreement. The attorneys from the three counties will have to agree with these details. The Chair of the Trailblazer Board would like to get the primary components of the agreement decided upon by 4-09-14. Ludwig said the Chair does not want to spend additional time discussing this if there is not a general, preliminary agreement on Board membership and how the local share will be split. Precious time is passing that needs to be spent on operations. If an agreement cannot be reached with the County on the basic principles, Ludwig said the Trailblazer Board may support turning their attention to the cities at that point. Ludwig is conveying the message of the Chair of the Trailblazer Board, and he will report whatever progress is attained today to the Trailblazer Board. He said Trailblazer would really like to work with Wright County and will try to facilitate that.
Sawatzke’s understanding of the motion is that he and Potter will negotiate details with the Trailblazer Board. It was the consensus of Board members that this is correct. Sawatzke requested a friendly amendment to the motion to designate Borrell as the alternate in case he or Potter is unable to attend. The friendly amendment was accepted by Borrell and Daleiden. Potter said it should be made clear that the motion is that Wright County wants to go forward with Trailblazer.
Sawatzke asked Ludwig if it is the intent of the Trailblazer Board to negotiate at their 4-09-14 meeting. Ludwig said the Trailblazer Board would like a preliminary agreement in place on 4-09-14. Sawatzke said there will not be a preliminary agreement in place by that date. Dates need to be set to negotiate. Ludwig said if that is the position of the Wright County Board, it is his understanding that the Trailblazer Board will consider discussing the relationship with the cities in Wright County. He referenced the months that have passed on this topic thus far and the need for a preliminary agreement or understanding on board membership and the local share division.
Daleiden responded to the time frame of months that Ludwig referenced and what was offered to the County. Daleiden said Trailblazer provided material to the County Board at the 3-27-14 Committee Of The Whole Meeting. Ludwig said his intent was to reference the transition of transit, and Trailblazer was involved in December, 2013. He said that three months of time has been lost in discussion and positioning on who is going to be involved. Daleiden said MnDOT bypassed the County and got the cities involved. They held a meeting in Buffalo on 3-11-14 for the cities to look at options. At that meeting, there was only once choice offered. Daleiden said that was the first time there was a presentation on the choices. Three months ago, Trailblazer was not the only consideration, unless MnDOT was communicating things to others and not to the County Board. Husom said MnDOT may not have been communicating with the County so the County did not know. Daleiden questioned how a decision can be expected by 4-09-14 based on information provided to the County Board last week and to the cities three weeks ago. Daleiden felt it was asking too much to say that it is all or nothing by 4-09-14.
Ludwig asked how much time the County will need to decide on the two issues. Sawatzke said time is needed for negotiations, and he does not feel a joint powers agreement can be negotiated in one meeting. Ludwig agreed. Sawatzke said they may be able to negotiate in one meeting an arrangement for the period of 7-01-14 through 12-31-14. Sawatzke said Trailblazer could elect to contract with MnDOT directly to provide services to Wright County for that period of time. Funding from MnDOT and the ridership will more than cover expenses. That would provide time to negotiate a resolution. Sawatzke said it is an unreasonable expectation for Trailblazer to indicate that they will contact the cities if an agreement with the County is not in place by 4-09-14. Sawatzke felt it may be difficult to get 16 cities together and come up with something in 2-3 months. Sawatzke said he is willing to meet with Trailblazer.
Ludwig stated that the Chair of Trailblazer recommended the 4-09-14 meeting be held with two Commissioners from Wright County, two from Sibley County, and two from McLeod County. This will be held as a special session as the next meeting of the Trailblazer Board is 4-17-14. After discussion, the following dates were proposed as alternate dates to the 4-09-14 meeting: 4-07-14 (all day), 4-08-14 (a.m.), 4-10-14 (all day), and 4-11-14 (all day). Ludwig will contact the Chair of the Trailblazer Board and relay the response to Kelly. The motion carried 5-0.
Daleiden referenced the seats on the Trailblazer Joint Powers Board and said he supports the idea of having two Commissioners serve from each of the Counties. Instead of rotating a member, he suggests the position be filled with a different stakeholder such as a representative from a senior center or Functional Industries. That type of representative will bring a different perspective on service to the public. He asked that this be considered as part of the negotiations.
A Personnel Committee Meeting was held on 3-26-14. At today’s County Board Meeting, the Lobby Reception position was discussed. Sawatzke explained that obtaining call and visitor data will help to determine whether to invest in re-working the layout of the Lobby Reception area to make it more conducive to working on other things. He said if there is not much time available in the person’s schedule, it would not make sense to change the area. Bob Hiivala, Auditor/Treasurer, has asked the Lobby Receptionist to track call and visitor data. He said another idea would be to use signage in the Lobby and let visitors self direct. This position could then be placed elsewhere to work on other things. Hiivala suggested re-routing calls to Human Services Reception. Sawatzke thought the call data could be obtained from telephone reports instead of having the employee track them. Hiivala will find out what data is available. This topic will be revisited at the next Personnel Committee Meeting if the information is available. Sawatzke made a motion to approve the minutes, seconded by Daleiden, carried 5-0. The minutes of the Personnel Committee Meeting follow:
I. Request To Reclassify An Office Technician II To A Case Aide (HS Board).
II. Request To Add Temporary Staff In The Fiscal/Technology Unit (HS Board).
III. Lobby Reception Position.
The Committee discussed impacts on the position over time such as the availability of contact information and forms on the County website, the ability for the public to communicate by email, and the changes associated with having security removed from the Lobby. When the Bailiffs were located in the Lobby, they provided assistance to the public on where to obtain services based on their particular request. Committee members recognize the value in the assistance provided to the public by the Lobby Receptionist.
The Committee discussed identifying duties of the position and potentially a more conducive work space for working on confidential items. Sawatzke requested data on current and historic phone calls, and tracking of how many people are waited on. He did not want to expend dollars rearranging the work space if data shows there is not much time available for other work.
Recommendation: Lay this item over to gather more data.
IV. Performance Appraisal Sean Riley, Planning & Zoning Administrator.
Based on three Performance Appraisals reviewed, the Committee recommends an overall rating of exceptional.
(End of 3-26-14 Personnel Committee Minutes)
Advisory Committee/Advisory Board Updates:
1. Emergency Services Board. Borrell said a meeting was held last week in St. Cloud. A new Joint Powers Agreement will be presented to each Board for approval. The Agreement was corrected and modified. The attorneys from each of the member Counties reviewed the document.
2. Central MN Mental Health Center. Sawatzke said the group is looking at remodeling the St. Cloud and Elk River campuses. A request was received by the Central MN Mental Health Center to branch into other counties (Pine, Isanti, Chisago, Mille Lacs) and be the provider because their public mental health facility stopped operating. After discussion, the Central MN Mental Health Center voted overwhelmingly (not unanimous) to remain with the mission of only providing service to Wright, Benton, Sherburne, and Stearns Counties and to not branch out into other counties. Husom said the group Wright County belongs to involves the 7W Counties. The service lost by the 7E Counties was a private service. The primary concern is for crisis response. She said it would be difficult to take on the 7E Counties at this time. Daleiden felt the 7E Counties would be better off doing their own Joint Powers. Husom said the State was meeting with the 7E Counties last night. There is a vast shortage of psychiatrists in the U.S., and it has been difficult trying to recruit psychiatrists for the Central MN Mental Health Center. Sawatzke said that the growth in the 7W area in the past five years has been phenomenal due to program requirements. The 7W group needs to be able to handle the needs of the four Counties.
Husom said something new is “Text for Life” which is being used by teenagers that are in a crisis situation and need someone to talk with. They have found that is how younger people communicate (by text rather than phone). A private firm is working on this but if a response team is needed, Central MN Mental Health Center responds. Husom said a Central MN Mental Health representative has been designated to announce the program to schools in the St. Cloud area and to St. Cloud State University. Sawatzke said the 7W area is going to be the first in State where texting can be used instead of calling an 800 number. This is being funded by a grant.
Advanced Graphix Inc $475.00
Amer. Ballistic Glass LLLP 6,200.86
Ameripride Services 311.42
Anoka County HSD 9,412.00
Anoka County Sheriff 26,555.19
Aramark Services Inc 7,232.23
Archonix Systems LLC 9,370.00
Association of MN Counties 26,571.00
Bachman Printing 491.80
Beaudry Oil Co 691.80
Big Time Towing 250.00
Bob Barker Company Inc 150.77
BP Amoco 107.70
Bryan Rock Products 197.97
BV Construction Inc 1,350.00
Cenex Fleetcard 1,593.93
Center Point Energy 5,203.85
Centra Sota Coop. - Buffalo 9,753.33
Central Hydraulics Inc 165.95
Cent. MN Mental Hlth Ctr. Inc 1,339.80
Climate Air 973.70
Commissioner of Transp. 265.34
Compass Counsel./Assess. 1,750.00
Constellation Justice Sys. 18,637.50
Core Proffesional 400.00
Countryside Welding Repair 3,298.86
Design Elect. Inc-Cold Spring 950.00
Frontier Precision Inc 1,026.00
GCS Service Inc 151.75
Granite City Cash Register 241.96
Hedlund Plumbing 350.00
Hillyard Inc - Minneapolis 5,064.32
Impact Proven Solutions 14,519.91
Inclusion Solutions LLC 997.72
Intereum Inc 7,511.38
L3 Communications Inc 133.00
LaPlant Demo Inc 1,301.43
Lawson Products Inc 692.63
Leclaire/Kimberly D 189.00
Mapping Solutions 1,128.00
Marco Inc 5,713.16
Martin Marietta Materials 2,971.51
Menards - Buffalo 343.28
Metro Group Inc/The 5,624.84
MN Area Assoc. of Realtors 1,404.00
MN Continuing Legal Education 337.00
MN Counties Comp. Coop. 5,000.00
MN Monitoring Inc 19,113.75
MN Safety Council 700.00
Morphotrust USA Inc 6,042.00
Morries Parts & Service Group 971.34
National Business Institute 349.00
North American Salt Co 19,257.97
Office Depot 981.20
Omni Rail Products Inc 11,585.00
Peterson’s Towing & Recovery 149.00
PSS World Medical Inc 703.85
Ramada Plaza Suites Fargo 285.10
Ratwik,Roszak,& Maloney 231.00
RCM Specialties Inc 611.52
Regents of the Univ. of MN 38,900.94
Rice/Nicole L 225.00
Royal Tire Inc 1,852.03
Russell Security Resource Inc 225.00
Sherburne County Treasurer 115.00
SHI International Corp 332.00
Sign Man of MN Inc/The 106.88
Suburban Emerg. Assoc. PA 171.30
Total Printing 229.00
Unlimited Electric Inc 5,019.39
Van Meter & Associates 380.00
Walmart Community GEMB 146.43
Walmart Store 01-1577 163.97
West Payment Center 606.53
Wright Co. Auditor Treasurer 2,440.55
Wright County Highway Dept 1,285.53
Wright Co. Human Services 403.33
34 Payments less than $100 1,913.38
Final total $316,164.73
The meeting adjourned at 10:25 A.M
Published in the Herald Journal April 28, 2014.