Wright County Board Minutes

SEPTEMBER 18, 2018
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Husom, Vetsch, Daleiden, Potter, and Borrell present.
The following correction was made to the minutes: Page 1, 8th paragraph, 1st line, change the time to “10:30 A.M.” for the public hearing on 10-16-18 (Kelly). Borrell moved to approve the minutes as amended, seconded by Husom. The motion carried 5-0.
The following correction was made to the agenda: Page 2, Item 9, change to read, “NOTE: 10:30 A.M., Budget Committee Of The Whole Meeting” (Kelly). Husom moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Potter. The motion carried 5-0.
On a motion by Potter, second by Borrell, all voted to approve the Consent Agenda:
1. Reappoint Steve Jobe As County Surveyor For A Four-Year Term Commencing 1-01-19
1. Approval Of New Section 516 (Telework Procedures & Guidelines) In The Wright County Personnel Handbook
1. Appoint Lynn Kissock To The Wright County Community Action (WCCA) Board of Directors, Three-Year Term, 9-18-18 Through 11-09-21 (Public Sector Representative)
1. Claim, Madden, Galanter & Hansen, LLP, 8-2018 Services, $1,368.05
1. Position Replacement:
A. Facilities Manager Position
1. Authorize Signatures on Amendment to Agreement Between the Developer of a Solar Energy Farm and the County of Wright
1. Acknowledge Warrants Issued Between September 5, 2018 And September 11, 2018
1. Request To Hire Temporary Positions
A. 67-Day Temp - Family Intervention Services, Social Services
B. 67-Day Temp - Adult Services, Social Services
Introduction Of IT Sr. Systems Engineer, Joshua Fox, And IT Sr. Technical Support Specialist, Jesus Castillo
Joshua Fox and Jesus Castillo were introduced and welcomed by the Board.
Adopt Resolution Authorizing Entering Into A Grant Contract With The Minnesota Department Of Veteran Affairs (MNDVA) To Conduct The County Veterans Service Office Operation Enhancement Program, Grant Program-FY19, Period Of Performance 7-01-18 Through 6-30-19
Pickard said the amount of the grant is $15,000. It is an annual grant and the amount received is based on population. The County would have to add 3,000 veterans to the program to receive an additional $2,500 in grant funding.
Pickard reported the amount of phone calls and visits have tripled from the 2017 grant period. The recently hired Assistant Veterans Services Officer has provided needed assistance in the office. The file scan project is moving along with about half of the 17,379 files scanned. Pickard extended appreciation to the Information Technology Department for developing a faster method of scanning that will be implemented in October. Pickard estimates that the scanning project will be completed by the end of 2020.
Potter made a motion to adopt Resolution #18-64 approving the grant contract with MNDVA to conduct the County Veterans Service Office Operation Enhancement Program for FY19, Period of Performance 7-01-18 through 6-30-19. The motion was seconded by Borrell and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Tammi Vaith, Chief Deputy Auditor/Treasurer, presented the Auditor/Treasurer agenda items.
Authorize Purchase Of Elections Equipment From Knowink
Vaith explained that smaller WIFI pucks were used in the Primary Election. The pucks had intermittent connectivity and not being strong enough to handle multiple Poll pads in the larger precincts.
A contract with Knowink was distributed. The request is to authorize staff to return the smaller WIFI pucks ($150 each) and to purchase larger ones ($475 each). Matt Detjen, Ditch Coordinator, explained that the vendor will issue full credit for the returned items. The larger WIFI pucks will take care of both issues. Funds are being levied in the 2019 budget for new elections equipment, but the request is to fund this expenditure in 2018 through the CIP (Capital Improvement Plan) so the election runs smoothly.
Vetsch made a motion to authorize the return of the smaller WIFI pucks and the purchase of the larger WIFI pucks. The motion was seconded by Potter. Vaith said the units will be available for the November elections. The motion carried 5-0.
TriMin Contract Ratification
The request is to ratify the Professional Services Agreement between TriMin Systems Inc. and the Minnesota Counties Computer Cooperative for the maintenance and support of IFS (Integrated Financial System). Vaith said the current contract ends this year. The new contract will be for three years.
Potter moved to approve the Trimin Contract for the period of 1-01-19 through 12-31-21. The motion was seconded by Vetsch and carried 5-0.
Rules & Regulations Of The Joint IFS Committee
Vaith said the Rules & Regulations of the Joint IFS Committee were updated and requested approval.
Vetsch made a motion to accept the Rules & Regulations of the MnCCC Joint IFS Committee. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0.
Adopt Resolution Authorizing The Public Sale Of Tax Forfeit Properties On Thursday, October 25, 2018 at 1:00 p.m.
Vaith said the tax forfeit properties include the following parcels:
Parcel; Location; 2019 Value; Specials Before; Minimum Bid Price
PID 114-215-001010; St. Michael; $56,800; n/a; $56,800
PID 118-500-332304; Otsego; $77,800; n/a; $55,000
PID 155-193-001020; Monticello; $399,200; $305,572.29; $310,000
PID 206-017-000010; Corinna Twp.; $10,400; n/a; $20,000
PID 218-000-151401; Stockholm Twp.; $166,500; $97.00; $20,000
Daleiden questioned the property in Corinna Township that has a $10,400 value with a minimum bid price of $20,000. Brian Asleson, Chief Deputy Attorney, said the values are determined by the Assessor’s Office but he will double check prior to publishing notice of the sale.
Potter moved to adopt Resolution #18-65 authorizing the sale of the tax forfeited properties on October 25, 2018 at 1:00 P.M. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Adopt Resolution Authorizing The Sale Of Abandoned Property On A Tax Forfeiture Parcel Scheduled For Sale PID #118-500-332304
Vaith explained that when there is an abandoned property, a sale is held for the personal property. Brian Asleson, Chief Deputy Attorney, said no one has lived on this parcel for years. There is furniture but no vehicles that he is aware of. The County can clean up the items or require the buyer to do so. This step is required in order to remove the personal items.
Husom moved to adopt Resolution 18-66 authorizing the sale of abandoned property on the tax forfeited parcel scheduled for sale, PID #118-500-332304. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Approve August Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report
On a motion by Borrell, second by Husom, all voted to approve the August Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report.
At the County Board Meeting, Husom moved to approve the minutes. The motion was seconded by Borrell and carried 5-0. The Personnel / Employee Relations Committee minutes follow:
Jami Goodrum Schwartz, Human Services Director provided the committee members with an overview of the teleworks pilot program that the HHS Department began in May. Goodrum Schwartz stated that her request for today is to move the telework program from a pilot program into a permanent program that will be adopted by the County through a policy in the County’s personnel policy manual.
Schawn Johnson, Human Resource Director agreed, commented that the Administration Department will consider other departments that may benefit from telework and will work well with them, however, it isn’t for all departments or individuals.
Human Services Director Goodrum Schwartz said there were twelve employees that participated in this pilot program and reported that it was quite successful. She added that they are monitoring and aware of some challenges that have arisen but are working through them as they occur. She added that they have been very selective in choosing the employees that participated in the pilot program and identified employees who they felt would work well in this type of work environment.
Human Services Director Goodrum Schwartz provided the committee members with a document identifying the benefits that the HHS Department experienced during the telework pilot program. The following is an overview of those results:
• Caseload Management
- Initial assessments completed up to 30% more quickly
- Initial case-processing time cut by up to 40%
- Reassessment case processing, including CSP, is now on time or within 5 days of due date. Prior to Telework, we were up to 30 days past the due date
> DD Child Case Manager is managing a caseload of 59 cases, a 15% increase from the recommended 50
> Child Support has increased their teleworker’s caseload by 10% without impacting quality of work
> Financial Assistance has experienced a 15% increase in caseload per teleworker
• Overall Productivity
> Requests to adjust schedules decreased by 50% from the previous 3 months
> Financial Assistance developed a job aid to increase efficiency
> Performance remained the same; child support collections have not decreased
> Availability of telework staff has not resulted in any complaints
> Clients receive better/faster services
• Technical Benefit
> Virtual printing into OnBase
• Staff Collaboration
> Coverage has been handled well
> Collaboration between staff members within and across units gives the teleworkers a sense of belonging to their own unit and to the new group
> Job satisfaction improved
July Pilot Report:
• Working Well:
> Wright Fax
> Connectivity
> Going smoothly (several noted)
> Going extremely well (several noted)
> Issues addressed quickly
> Staff adapting and covering for one another
> Voice messages to email is very helpful
> Flexibility
> Surprised how much more productive (several noted)
> More seamless than thought
> Coworkers helping one another for printing/problem solving
> Fantastic
> No computer issues (a few noted)
> Everyone has been responsive and quick
> Working from home is much less stressful
> No issues w/internet
> IT has been fabulous and very responsive
> kype has been great to communicate
• Challenges:
> Printing MnCHOICES – DHS is aware of the issue
> Printing from SMI
> Access to Compass to create forms
How to handle phones; Citrix issue
Chris Husom, Commissioner asked what was the breakdown of positions that participated in the pilot program.
Human Services Director Goodrum Schwartz responded that there is a total of twelve employees that participated in the program. There were six social workers (four child support officers, two financial workers), five DD MNchoices staff members and one Public Health Nurse. She added that they have seen the technology benefits with the release of Office 365, Skype, enhanced communication capabilities, and the ability to use more virtual printing using OnBase.
Mark Daleiden, Commissioner asked what they are seeing for the future for the telework program.
Health and Human Services Director Goodrum Schwartz said they have had conversations with BKV Group and with a staff of 240 HHS employees they would like to see a maximum of twelve employees a year participate in the telework program. HHS goal is to have 48 telework participants. She reported that the next roll out would be near the middle of 2019 with another twelve employees participating in the telework program. No employees that are currently participating in the telework pilot program have reported any issues or have asked to come back to work in the office. Some employees have reported that they have fewer distractions when they are teleworking then they do when they are working in the office.
Michelle Miller, Social Services Manager noted that they have tested using Skype for one in house meeting that involved telework employees. They will continue to explore this option in the future.
Commissioner Daleiden asked what the Information Technology Department’s opinion is regarding the telework program. Cheri Nelson, I.T. Manager said it was going quite smoothly on their end and deployment went well. She added that the size was manageable. She added that it was preferable to keep the rollout in pieces with technical support.
Jim O’Dell, Technology Supervisor agreed on limiting the number of rollouts in order to see what support may be needed with increasing the number of telework employees in the future.
Commissioner Daleiden asked about the purchasing of chairs. Tim Dahl, Risk Manager said that the telework staff members have been responsive and all participants purchased the necessary chairs and the County did not have any workers compensation claims to report. Human Resources Director Johnson complimented on the teamwork of all the departments in working together to successfully rollout the telework pilot program.
I.T. Manager Nelson said that they are modernizing the phone system with new components which will be the first step in improving the quality of our phone service. She stated that the I.T. Department is taking a conservative approach with the existing phone system and is trying not to damage the system that is already in place.
Kim Johnson, Financial Services Manager mentioned that they are taking calls from clients using cell phones and that it has not been a problem.
Commissioner Daleiden asked about doing home visits as a check in.
Human Services Manager Goodrum Schwartz replied that they have not conducted any home visits at this time, however they have been using Skype as a method to monitor staff members. She added that the employees understand that this is a huge privilege and they are expected to be professional.
Richelle Kramer, Social Services Supervisor mentioned that the calls also have an option to go into an audio file that can be shared with supervisors. IT Manager Nelson said this is a feature with the upgraded system and will be available to all County staff members in the future.
Human Resource Director Johnson added that this will be beneficial for saving audio files.
Commissioner Husom stated that she is happy with the teleworks pilot program and that the employees that are currently teleworking should continue to work in this capacity.
Human Services Director Goodrum Schwartz added that this is also one tool that can be used to assist with staff retention.
Commissioner Daleiden also see that there is a lot of mobile employees that that could possibly turn into telework employees and that he is happy with the success of this program.
Minutes Submitted By: Kathleen Brannan-Merritt
(End of 9-10-18 Personnel / Employee Relations Committee Minutes)
On a motion by Potter, second by Husom, all voted to schedule an Owners COTW Meeting for 9-24-18 at 8:30 A.M.
Potter moved to authorize attendance. The motion was seconded by Borrell and carried 5-0.
On a motion by Potter, second by Vetsch, all voted to cancel the December 4, 2018 County Board Meeting
1. Coordinator Updates:
A. Public Health Task Force. Kelly attended the meeting on 9-10-18. A presentation was made on the need for a dental services clinic in Wright County.
B. Meeting with Xcel Energy. Kelly attended a portion of the meeting in Monticello with representatives from Xcel Energy. Discussion included valuation and the Department of Revenue. Vetsch attended the meeting and said an update will be provided at the Budget Committee Of The Whole Meeting scheduled for today.
2. AMC Fall Policy Conference.
A. Opioid Summit. Potter attended the Opioid Summit. Information presented shows Wright and Hennepin Counties are similar in the number of jail inmates and drug use. However, Narcan use in Wright County is substantially lower than in Hennepin County. Daleiden showed a sample of pill disposal packets he obtained at the Conference. The packets aid in the proper disposal of medications. Daleiden suggested the use of SHIP grant funding for purchase of these packets.
B. AMC Policy Committee - Transportation. Potter said the proposed bill language ‘constitutionally dedicate sales tax from auto parts to transportation’ was removed. The language will instead be ‘statutorily directing the sales tax from auto parts to transportation.’ A few metro counties did not support the constitutional language.
C. AMC Policy Committee - General Government. Vetsch attended. Discussion included out-of-home placements on the ICWA (Indian Child Welfare Act) and funding. He reported 1 in 10 children in Beltrami County touches the foster care system. The group agreed the largest priority items include data retention and uniformity; dark stores, and utility valuations.
D. AMC Policy Committee - Health & Human Services. Daleiden attended. Reservations came up as a priority. Minnesota Eligibility Technology System (METS) did not make the top three. Husom said the efficiency of the system needs to be increased.
E. AMC Policy Committee – Natural Resources & Environment. Borrell attended. John Kolb from Rinke-Noonan and the Department of Natural Resources were present to discuss HF 2687 and SF 2419 relating to the DNR’s involvement with county ditches. It was a very informative discussion. He said this is not getting pushed forward as the drainage work group does not support it. MnDOT (MN Department of Transportation) was present to provide information on feedlots (definition and what needs to be worked on).
In addition, there was a presentation on economic development and how business growth can be stifled. Borrell said he may request that presentation to be made to the full Board.
3. Trailblazer Transit. Vetsch said Trailblazer received their funding note from MnDOT. Trailblazer requested nearly $5.5 million and MnDOT funded about $5.4 million. Trailblazer also requested $295,000 in unmet needs which was funded by MnDOT. The unmet needs funding pertains to the future maintenance of two buses that were received last year. Potter extended appreciation to Vetsch for his work on keeping transit viable and moving forward.
4. Parks Commission. Daleiden said the Parks Commission took a tour on 9-10-18 of various parks. He said Mud Lake Park is very peaceful. The SWCD (Soil & Water Conservation District) will be contacted on a potential filter to reduce phosphorus flow into the lake.
5. Mental Health Task Force. Daleiden attended a meeting on 9-11-18. Discussion continues on placements, shortage of beds, and suicides.
6. MEADA. Husom attended the meeting on 9-12-18. HHS (Health & Human Services) has been assisting with the MEADA program. A S.H.I.P. (Safety & Health Investment Projects) grant was obtained and will help going forward with the opioid crisis. Other discussion relating to opioids included pharmacies and a document management tool used in schools to interview at-risk kids. A grant was issued to Safe Communities for $500.
7. Public Works Labor Management. Husom attended the meeting on 9-13-18. Highway had a record number of projects this year. Overlays were completed mostly in the western portion of the County. MnDOT normally completes traffic counts every four years; the request is for every two years due to the growth in the County. The Highway Department will receive $4 million in federal funding in 2019. Parks provided an update on activities including 15 new sites at Collinwood Park, Otsego has a new restroom, and Ney Park had 750 kids participate in their program. A notice was received on Emerald Ash Bore and the process to remove ash trees.
8. Safe Communities of Wright County. Husom attended a meeting on 9-14-18. Centra Care held a demo on an interactive virtual driver. Grant funding is available to communities for education. The state-wide seatbelt and child restraint campaign is September 17-29, 2018. Seatbelt compliance is at 92% in Minnesota.
8. Workforce Center Joint Powers Board. Husom attended on 9-14-18. When there are more workers, federal funding reduces. The Center lays staff off when needed which results in keeping a neutral budget.
9. Potter announced the Open House on CR 37 (from CR 19 west to CR 18) that will be held on 9-18-18 from 4:00-6:00 PM at the Highway Building. That project is scheduled for reconstruction in 2019.
The meeting adjourned at 10:06 A.M.
County Board Minutes Submitted by: Susan Backes, Clerk to the County Board
Published in the Herald Journal Oct. 5, 2018.