Wright County Board Minutes

JANUARY 21, 2020
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Vetsch, Husom, Daleiden, Potter and Borrell present.
Vetsch moved to approve the 1-07-20 County Board Minutes. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0.
Daleiden moved to approve the Agenda. The motion was seconded by Potter and carried 5-0.
Potter moved to approve the Consent Agenda. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0:
1. Authorize Board Attendance, Strategic Planning Workshop With InfoTech, March 9-12, 2020, 8:00 AM, Government Center Room 120A
1. Authorize Board Attendance, Economic Development Partnership Annual Meeting, 1-31-20 @ 7:30 AM, St. Michael City Hall
1. Authorize Board Attendance, Association Of Minnesota Counties Legislative Conference, Feb. 26-27, 2020, St. Paul
1. Cancellation Of 3-31-20 County Board Meeting Due To Five Tuesdays In March
1. Refer Medical Examiner Report To The 2-11-20 County Board Workshop
1. Approve A Performance Rating Of “Meets Expectations” For County Administrator Lee Kelly
1. Authorize Signatures On Contracts For Professional Services Of Guardianship And/Or Conservatorship With Nichole A. Meyer, LLC And Presbyterian Family Foundation, Inc., Contract Period Of 1-01-20 Through 12-31-20
1. Approve The Agreement Between The Wright County Soil And Water Conservation District And The County Of Wright For Engineering Services And Technical Assistance For Public Drainage Projects.
2. Acknowledge Warrants Issued Between December 30, 2019 And January 13, 2020.
1. Schedule Ditch Committee Of The Whole Meeting, Public Hearing, For 2-19-20 @ 3:45 PM, County Ditch #13
1. Position Replacement
A. Case Aide
1. Hire 67-Day Temp Social Worker
1. Approve Schedule For Receiving Bids For 2020 Highway Construction Projects:
A. Schedule To Receive Bids For Thursday, February 13, 2020: 11:00 a.m. 2020 Seal Coating Program (Contract No. 2004)
B. Schedule To Receive Bids For Thursday, February 27, 2020: 11:00 a.m. CSAH 39 Four Lane Expansion (CP 086-039-201), Otsego (Contract No. 2002) 11:15 a.m. 2020 Pavement Preservation Program (Contract No. 2001) 11:30 a.m. Seasonal Requirements (Pavement Markings & Bituminous Patching Mix)
1. Refer To 1-22-20 Technology Committee:
A. New Project Requests
B. Status of ongoing Projects
C. ERP Update
D. VPN Update
1. Authorize Signatures On Memorandum Of Understanding Between Wright County And The City Of Monticello Relating To The Construction OF Turn Lanes Along Briarwood Avenue NE
1. Authorize Signatures On The Equitable Sharing Agreement With The Department Of Justice and Department Of The Treasury
Introduction Of Kevin Kaszynski, Business Analyst
Introduction Of Regina Hughes, Records Management Analyst
Strobel introduced new employees in the Information Technology Department. Kevin Kaszynski recently started as the Business Analyst and Regina Hughes as the Records Management Analyst. Both were welcomed.
Approve Temporary Liquor License For A.B.A.T.E. of Minnesota, Inc.
The event is scheduled for 2-08-20 at Rockford Township Hall. Potter moved to approve the License. The motion was seconded by Borrell and carried 5-0.
Approve Preliminary December Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report
Hiivala explained the Report is preliminary and expects the final in March or early April. Daleiden moved to approve the preliminary December Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report. The motion was seconded by Potter and carried 5-0.
Resolution Accepting A MN DNR Snowmobile Safety Enforcement Grant, Period Of 7-01-19 To 6-30-21, $10,964 ($5,482 in 2020 & $5,482 in 2021)
A grant was received from the MN DNR (Department of Natural Resources) for the enforcement of snowmobile laws, staff training, and youth training classes.
Potter moved to adopt Resolution #20-03 accepting the MN DNR Snowmobile Safety Enforcement Grant, period of 7-01-19 to 6-30-21, in the amount of $10,964. The motion was seconded by Borrell and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Adopt Resolution Updating Wright County Hazard Mitigation Plan, As Required By FEMA Every Five Years To Be Eligible For Federal Funds Due To A Natural Disaster
Hansen stated that every five years, the Federal Government requires an update to the County Hazard Mitigation Plan. The Plan is needed to be eligible for FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) reimbursement funds due to natural or man-made disasters. The plan update is done with the help of Homeland Security and Emergency Management and FEMA. A $17,000 match is required and can be offset from salary costs from county, city, and public personnel and volunteers.
Vetsch moved to adopt Resolution #20-04 updating the Wright County Hazard Mitigation Plan. The motion was seconded by Potter and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
At today’s County Board Meeting, Daleiden moved to accept the minutes. The motion was seconded by Potter and carried 5-0. The minutes follow:
The Wright County Board met in workshop session at 9:00 A.M. with Vetsch, Husom, Borrell, Daleiden, and Potter present.
I. Schedule Meetings As Needed
Matt Detjen, Agricultural & Drainage Coordinator, asked to schedule a public hearing for re-establishment of records for County Ditch 13 on 2/19/20 at 3:45 P.M.
Lee Kelly, County Administrator, recommended that the 3/31/20 Board meeting be cancelled as there are five Tuesdays in that month. There will be a workshop on 3/10/20 with InfoTech.
1) Schedule a Public Hearing for Re-establishment of Records for County Ditch 13 on 2/19/20 at 3:45 P.M.
2) Cancel the 3/31/20 County Board Meeting.
II. Veteran Record Scanning Update
Greg Pickard, Veteran Service Officer, gave a presentation titled “Wright County Veteran Services Update” (see attachment). One of his initial goals when he was hired in 2017 was to digitize 17,746 veteran records. This project is now complete. Pickard credits his staff with getting the project done five months ahead of schedule. At the onset of this project, Pickard said there were 36 five-drawer filing cabinets. Now there is only one supply cabinet.
Recommendation: Informational only.
III. Impact Of The Veteran Property Tax Exclusion
Pickard directed attention to the third page of the presentation, “Questions on Property Tax Exclusion.” These numbers are estimates regarding how much County revenue will be decreased by the State mandate. Approximately 400 veterans or their spouses in Wright County are affected by the mandate. The total estimated impact to the County is an estimated $680,720.
Moving to the presentation page titled “2019 Operational Improvement Grant,” Pickard said the grant is now closed out. There were 4918 office visits (by phone, email, walk-ins, and appointments) between July 1, 2018 and June 30, 2019, compared to 3509 office visits in 2018. Pickard discussed how he utilizes outreach events and efforts by the Veterans Administration to get out information about benefits for veterans.
Recommendation: Informational only.
IV. Economic Development
A. Presentation By Heidi Peper on Economic Development
Heidi Peper, Senior Funding Leader for Stantec, was the Executive Director of the Wright County Economic Development Partnership (WCEDP) from 1999-2002. She has 25 years of experience in community and economic development. Prior to the current Executive Director, Duane Northagen, who is retiring soon, Peper said there had been a lot of turnover in that position. She believes it is because this position has to spend the majority of time soliciting membership dollars from businesses and counties. She believes the County should increase financial support to WCEDP so staff can work on growing development and retaining workers. This would enable the new Executive Director to do the important work of economic development. Peper said ideally the WCEDP would be a department within the County government structure.
Discussion continued regarding how the absorption of the WCEDP into the County would be viewed by its members, especially private businesses. Christine Husom, County Commissioner, said the WCEDP Board could do the fundraising and allow the Executive Director to focus on economic development.
Recommendation: Informational only.
B. Future Of Economic Development
Kelly referenced a letter from the WCEDP Board dated 12/6/19 (see attached). Staff tried to identify ways to obtain benefits for the new Executive Director through Health Partners without success. Two options were discussed in the letter:
1) Enter into a Joint Powers Agreement with the WCEDP allowing the Executive Director to become a County Employee with full benefits, but under the direction of the WCEDP Board for an estimated total cost of $130,000.
2) Increase the County annual contribution to the WCEDP to $130,000 to provide for wages and benefits for the Executive Director, who would remain a WCEDP employee.
Discussion continued about the advantages and disadvantages of each option. Darek Vetsch, County Commissioner, favored Option 2 if they added a second County Commissioner to the WCEDP Board. If they don’t agree to a second Commissioner, the County would not increase their donation. Husom concurred. Northagen said he did not believe the WCEDP Board would have a problem adding a second Commissioner to their Board. They will meet on 1/24/20 to discuss the matter.
Recommendation: Increase the County’s annual contribution to the Wright County Economic Development Partnership to $130,000 if the WCEDP Board agrees to allow a second Wright County Commissioner to sit on their Board.
V. Review Of County Board Workshop Topics Listing
Topic suggestions included:
• Enhancing public outreach to build public support. Husom discussed a presentation she attended at a recent Association of Minnesota Counties (AMC) conference.
• Local Option Sales Tax (to be scheduled as a Transportation Committee Of The Whole versus a Board workshop).
• Personnel Policies (additions and updates). This may also go to Committee Of The Whole instead of a workshop.
• Move of Departments to the Justice Center.
• Sale of the Government Center and Health & Human Services Center.
• Medical Examiner’s Office annual presentation in February.
• WIC program in February.
• Update on the Central Mississippi Regional Planning Partnership (CMRP) and Trailblazer Transit in April or May.
• Legislative update from Flaherty and Hood in June.
Recommendation: Add additional topics to the Workshop Topics Listing.
The meeting adjourned at 11:41 AM.
1-14-20 County Board Workshop Minutes submitted by Deb Schreiner, Administrative Specialist
(End of 1-14-20 County Board Workshop Minutes)
Set Transportation Committee Of The Whole (TCOTW) Meeting To Discuss Transportation Items. Suggested Dates For Meeting: Monday, February 3, 2020 (PM); Tuesday, February 4, 2020 (PM); Wednesday, February 5, 2020; Thursday, February 6, 2020 (PM).
Chad Hausmann, Assistant Highway Engineer, presented the request to set a TCOTW Meeting.
Potter moved to schedule a TCOTW Meeting for 2-04-20 at 1:00 P.M. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0. Agenda items include:
1. LOST (Local Option Sales Tax) update and discuss a public hearing in the spring
2. Braddock Ave/CR 147 update - discuss with Buffalo Township
3. TH 25 Access Request update
4. Concrete Paving Association of MN presentation
5. Potential route designation changes to County Highway System
Authorize Signatures On An Agreement Between Wright County and Cedar Lake Conservation Club For The Purchase, Placement, and Maintenance Of A CD3 Station At Schroeder Park.
Mattice stated the Board recently authorized working with the Cedar Lake Conservation Club on an agreement for a CD3 Station to be placed at Schroeder Park. The agreement has been reviewed by the Cedar Lake Conservation Club, the County Attorney’s Office, and the Parks Commission. The five-year agreement is being presented for approval as recommended by the Parks Commission. Daleiden said this will provide a trial to monitor how much it is utilized. Hennepin County is successfully utilizing these units.
Daleiden moved to approve the purchase of a CD3 Station for Schroeder Park and to authorize Mattice to sign the agreement. The motion was seconded by Potter and carried 5-0.
Adopt The Great River Regional Trail Master Plan And Authorize The Parks and Recreation Department To Apply For Regional Designation Through The Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission.
Review and Adopt A Resolution Supporting Regional Designation Of The Great River Regional Trail.
Mattice said the Great River Regional Trail will run from the point where the Crow River Regional Trail terminates in Dayton to Clearwater which will hook into the Wobegon Trail. The cities of Otsego, Monticello, and Clearwater and townships were invited to planning meetings. The Parks Commission reviewed the Plan at their December meeting and tabled it for more discussion. The final Plan is being presented today for adoption. It was clarified that the Plan is conceptual, and each segment will be defined as it is completed. Vetsch said the intent is for 80% grant funding. The more local funding involved will result in a longer time frame for implementation.
Potter moved to adopt Resolution #20-05 adopting the Great River Regional Trail Master Plan and authorizing the Parks & Recreation Department to apply for regional designation through the Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
In September the President issued an Executive Order that requires affirmative action by a local government (defined as counties) to allow refugees to be placed within the county.
This Executive Order states consent from the governor of the state and the chief executive officer of each county is required to provide consent. A county that takes no action will be considered non-consenting. Gov. Walz has provided consent in December 2019.
On 1/15/2020, A federal judge in the US District Court of Appeals in Maryland approved an injunction on the Executive Order regarding refugee resettlement. This decision effectively rules local governments cannot exercise veto power over refugee resettlement in their jurisdictions.
At today’s County Board Meeting, Vetsch said that considering the injunction at this point is basically a moot point. He did not see a reason for the County Board to act at this time.
Vetsch made a motion to table this topic. The motion was seconded by Potter. Additional information was provided to Commissioners from the Association of Minnesota Counties (AMC) and the Department of Human Services. Daleiden requested that the County website include a link to the AMC website. Discussion included the potential of this topic returning and scheduling a public meeting at that time. It was suggested that Rachele King, State Refugee Coordinator, be invited to the public meeting to answer questions. Eric Fredrickson, Buffalo resident, voiced his support in making this a public meeting for input by residents. Vetsch thought the process to go through the court system and appeal process may take about a year. The motion to table the topic carried 5-0.
1. One Watershed One Plan. Borrell attended a meeting on 1-08-20. A memorandum of cooperative agreement is being reviewed by the attorneys for the various entities involved. A draft is available for review.
2. Wetland Appeal Board. Borrell and Husom attended a meeting on 1-13-20. About a year ago, the motion to bring the wetland conservation back to the County for enforcement failed on a 3-2 vote. With two members of the County Board on the Wetland Appeal Board, it passed 4-3.
3. Owners Committee Meeting, Justice Center. Borrell attended the meeting held on 1-15-20.
- Curved dais in the courtrooms. There is a product solution identified at an added cost of $14,500.
- Capt. Pat O’Malley, Jail, requested additional security cameras in the existing Jail at an estimated cost of $18,000. Half of the cost will be funded by the Jail budget.
- Lighting in public hallways, Justice Center. An issue arose with lights not fitting in the public corridors. Borrell said the issue will come before the Board. He noted that this is not a mistake made by the County, so the County should not be responsible for the retrofit cost. In addition, he thought that the County could potentially be compensated for settling on a different finishing.
- The contingency fund has a negative balance because of funding that is being used toward the shared parking lot with the new Government Center. This negative balance will be adjusted as the Government Center project moves along.
- Courtroom wall coverings. A different surface may be selected for the courtroom walls. The venetian plaster requires application by an experienced person. Borrell said this is another area where it should be identified on who is responsible for the cost.
4. Trailblazer Transit Meeting. Vetsch attended the organizational meeting last week.
5. Owners Committee Meeting, New Government Center. Vetsch provided an update.
- Most of the change orders relate to plumbing upgrades for the dental center.
- Screening for the roof was decided against as it only affects views from the north about 1⁄4 mile away. The screenings cost $70,000.
- Another consideration was for a raised floor for Information Technology. The original plan was for the data center to not have a raised floor. The cost to do so is about $40,000. More discussion will be held but it is felt data centers could be made smaller due to cloud-based storage.
- Vetsch said there are rumors that another floor was added to the new Government Center building that is under construction. He said that is incorrect. The layout of the top floor was changed to include enclosing additional space because of the savings realized in the bids. Borrell said he voted against the building but supports enclosing this additional space because of the cost savings realized by completing it now versus in the future.
6. Central Mississippi River Regional Planning Partnership. Vetsch said the group met last week with the planners from Ohio. The road trip was cancelled due to inclement weather. Another meeting will be held this week to solidify the community engagement piece and to work on a post planning goal setting workshop.
7. Union Negotiations. Husom said meetings continue with bargaining units.
8. Township Officers Meeting. Commissioners attended the quarterly meeting with Township Officers at Buffalo Township.
9. Wright County Sheriff’s Breakfast. Husom, Vetsch and Kelly attended a recent meeting with community members and legislators featuring Rivers of Hope services. The Sheriff’s Office presented Rivers of Hope with a check for over $14,000.
10. Safe Communities of Wright County. Husom was elected as Chair of the group. A survey of 11th grade students was completed by the State on driving practices. Data reflects that 52% of males and 54% of females send or read emails or texts while driving. Husom noted the number of people talking on the phone while driving. The group discussed vaping. Acute nicotine poisoning is occurring. The Parent Teen Driver Education program continues to be a success for both students and parents and includes a new responsible driving handbook. The sober cab ridership has declined. Safe Communities of Wright County contributes $1/ride, with the bar and rider contributing to make up the remainder of the cost. The group is planning for mock crash sites.
11. I-94 Coalition. Potter said there is a new grant program, similar to the BUILD grant. Application is due by the end of February. The grant funding would be used toward the remaining section of I-94 from Albertville to Monticello. Once the Wright County portion of I-94 has been completed, focus will move to other highways in the County.
12. Ney Park Dog Sledding Event. Daleiden said his family recently attended and enjoyed the dog sledding event. He has talked with Parks about expanding the program. He learned that once Bertram Park is more established, another run may be set up at that location.
13. Home Visiting Coalition. Daleiden attended a meeting on 1-10-20 with representatives from Sherburne, Stearns and Benton counties on this new program. Counties are collaborating to share personnel to aid families in raising children, organizations, etc. Public Health is involved in this venture.
14. County Canvassing Board. Daleiden said the Canvassing Board met on 1-15-20. There were 15-16 voters in Otsego for the primary special election for the seat vacated by Nick Zerwas. There are 680 registered voters in that precinct.
15. County Administrator Updates:
A. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Meetings. Meetings continue on ERP. Procurement was discussed last week. The upcoming focus will be on the human capital/human resources portion starting on 2-06-20. Daleiden asked for the status of the Procurement Analyst position. Kelly said the position is posted and the application process closes on 2-02-20.
Bills Approved
All State Communications Inc 3,944.00
Allen Precision Equipment Inc 3,899.95
Alternative Business Furniture Inc 6,276.12
American Tower Corporation 7,363.32
Carver County 32,318.59
CDW Government Inc 21,423.65
Centerpoint Energy 7,209.00
CPS Technology Solutions 4,194.99
Government Forms & Supplies LLC 3,333.19
Hennepin County Treasurer 37,236.63
Hyland Software Inc 6,226.40
Kandiyohi County Auditor 64,586.99
Marco 35,884.00
Marco 3,168.14
Mattson Well Company 11,598.90
McLeod County Auditor 86,969.11
Meeker County Auditor 79,491.68
Office of MN IT Services 3,000.00
On-Demand Services Group Inc 19,509.50
Patnode Brothers Inc 21,700.00
Pluralsight LLC 13,595.45
Pope County 4,968.23
Redi Transports LLC 3,350.00
Renville County Courthouse 32,318.59
Sibley County 4,968.23
Snowplows Plus 2,200.00
Sprint 2,266.39
Stearns County Treasurer 32,318.59
Thomson Reuters West Pub. 2,416.90
Wright Hennepin Electric 5,112.07
48 Payments less than 2000 21,662.05
Final Total 584,510.66
The meeting adjourned at 10:00 a.m.
Published in the Herald Journal Feb. 14, 2020.