Wright County Board Minutes

FEBRUARY 25, 2020
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Husom, Vetsch, Potter, and Daleiden present. Commissioner Borrell was absent.
Vetsch moved to approve the minutes. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 4-0.
Potter moved to approve the Agenda. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 4-0.
Daleiden moved to approve the Consent Agenda. The motion was seconded by Vetsch and carried 4-0.
1. Schedule Committee Of The Whole Meeting On 2-27-20 @ 2:30 PM To Discuss The Notice To Proceed to Phase 3 For Bertram Chain Of Lakes Campground And Consideration Of A Capital Improvement Budget Amendment To Move The Project To 2020
1. Approve & Authorize Signatures On Memorandum Of Agreement (MOA) With Teamsters Local 320 (Courthouse Unit) Authorizing Six Employees That Were Impacted By Their Wages Exceeding The Established Salary Ranges In The 2012 Compensation & Classification Study For Their Position Classification A 1.5% One-Time Lump Sum Payment From The County (Employees Base Wage * 1.5%) On The First Pay Check Following The Ratification Of The MOA
1. Authorize County Board Attendance At Monticello Nuclear Generating Station Tour, 3-26-20 at 10:00 AM
1. Acknowledge Warrants Issued Between February 11, 2020 And February 18, 2020
1. Accept The Findings And Recommendation Of The Planning Commission For The Following Requests To Rezone:
A. JOE FAKE - (Franklin Twp.) - Planning Commission Unanimously Recommend Rezoning 10 Acres From AG General Agriculture to A/R Agricultural-Residential
B. ALAN J. RUUD - (Rockford Twp.) Planning Commission Unanimously Recommend Rezoning The Parcel From AG General Agriculture To I-1 General Industry
C. DENNIS J. & SARAH J. BILJAN - (Monticello Twp.) - Planning Commission Unanimously Recommend Rezoning 5 Acres From A/R Agricultural-Residential To AG General Agriculture
1. Position Replacement:
A. Deputy
Resolution Accepting A Grant Through The DNR (Department Of Natural Resources) For The Purchase Of A Patrol Boat
Athman stated the Sheriff’s Office was awarded a $48,310 grant for the purchase of a 17’ Boston Whaler patrol boat, motor, and trailer.
Potter moved to adopt Resolution #20-15, accepting the grant funding of $48,310 from the DNR. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 4-0 on a roll call vote.
Approve The Findings & Order Granting Petition To Partially Abandon County Ditch 29
Matt Detjen, Agricultural & Drainage Coordinator, said a County Ditch #29 public hearing was held on 1-14-20 and the consensus was to approve a partial abandonment of the Ditch as reflected in the landowners’ petition. He referenced Item 10 of the draft document which addresses outstanding liens on the system, and said these are typically paid off prior to redetermination. However, the redetermination occurred prior to the partial abandonment so the landowners will be responsible for their portion of the cost.
Vetsch made a motion to approve the Findings and Order granting the petition for partial abandonment of County Ditch #29, as submitted by Thomas Mills, pursuant to Minnesota Statutes, Section 103E.806. The motion was seconded by Potter. Detjen explained that this involves a branch of the Ditch that was meant to drain a wetland, and the landowner does not want the wetland drained. Detjen had an in-depth discussion with the landowner on the rights they are forfeiting in the future. The motion carried 4-0.
Approve January Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report
Hiivala referenced page 12 of the Report which reflects that Information Technology is at 26% of budget for overtime. Staff has been working on large projects and has incurred a significant amount of overtime in the first month of the year. Potter moved to approve the January Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 4-0.
At today’s Board Meeting, Vetsch moved to approve the minutes and recommendations. The motion was seconded by Potter. Lee Kelly, County Administrator, referenced the recommendation of the minutes that reflects Ehlers should bring information to the 3-03-20 Board Meeting regarding the cost, scope of work, and structure of an exploratory committee for a potential Economic Development Authority as required per Statute 469.1802, Subd. 2. Kelly said Bruce Kimmel, Senior Municipal Advisor for Ehlers, is only available by video conference that day. It was the consensus that this topic should be discussed at a future meeting when Kimmel is available. The motion carried 4-0. The 2-18-20 COTW Minutes follow:
I. Presentation By Ehlers On HRA (Housing & Redevelopment Authority), EDA (Economic Development Authority), and CDA (Community Development Agency)
Bruce Kimmel, Senior Municipal Advisor, Ehlers, presented a PowerPoint presentation titled, “County Development Authority Options and Other Considerations” (see attached). Kimmel said the County Board has many policy decisions to consider.
Kimmel referred to the first slide, “HRA Statutory Powers.” Kimmel explained that EDA powers are more expansive than HRA powers. Historically, most counties had HRAs. In the past, metro counties focused primarily on housing and redevelopment of blighted areas. EDAs may also construct and own housing (not referring to public housing). Many counties have issued bonds for publicly owned housing. Another option is to levy a property tax as a separate entity.
Referring to the next slide, “EDA Statutory Powers,” Kimmel said EDAs have a clearer mandate to work for economic development and not just redevelopment. They also have more flexibility with loans. Statute allows city and county HRAs to amend their charters to grant themselves EDA powers. Many metropolitan HRAs rebranded and asked the Legislature to rename their HRAs as Community Development Agencies if they are doing housing, redevelopment, and economic development. Kimmel referred to the slide, “What’s in A Name?” that shows the possible configurations of HRA/EDA and CDA entities. The next slide, “Example - Carver County CDA Website” shows the transition of Carver County’s HRA to EDA to CDA status.
Kimmel said it makes sense for Wright County to establish an EDA. The first step is to form a committee that studies the options and then follow the specific process. Nothing in the EDA Statute dictates what the County can and cannot do. Statute 469.1082 details County EDA powers as referred to in the slide titled “County EDA Establishment.”
Kimmel referred to the “County EDA Levy” slide and said the maximum EDA levy for the County must not be more than .01813 percent of estimated market value. That amounts to an approximately $3.1 million maximum EDA Levy for Wright County. Any increase in the EDA levy would be subject to a reverse referendum. Kimmel said the Levy is a powerful tool enabling the County to invest in projects such as buying or selling land, staffing, other programs, working with the Wright County Economic Development Partnership, and others. Kimmel said the options for using EDA Levy dollars for economic development purposes is almost unlimited.
Alternately, Kimmel said the County could create a line item in the General Fund for economic development. The County could use General Levy dollars for small business loans or corporate training programs for public or private business purposes. Darek Vetsch, County Commissioner, said the County cannot buy or sell property without an EDA. Kimmel said the County’s ability to use General Levy dollars for private business purposes may be limited. The process of transferring money from the general ledger to an EDA is more transparent.
Kimmel turned to “Potential Next Steps on Economic Development.” He has worked with a number of counties on economic development. He recommended that the County Board focus on an unaddressed need such as solving the ability to dispose of the existing Government Center. There may be other issues like business retention, workforce development, or tax diversification. It is important that the County differentiate between the duties of the County EDA and the Wright County Economic Development Partnership (WCEDP). Other questions are whether and when the County will participate with local partners and developers, and how that process will be decided. Other considerations are whether the County should use development tools such as Tax Increment Financing (TIF), Abatement, grants or loans.
Vetsch said there are Federal home improvement grants available that the County cannot utilize since there is no County HRA or EDA. Goodrum Schwartz said a number of County Human Services departments have Housing units to take advantage of those funds. The County has no mechanism to do so. Goodrum Schwartz mentioned the Coordinated Entry program. Jill Pooler, Social Services Manager, said the County works through the St. Cloud HRA that works with a family of homeless prevention agencies.
Borrell favored utilizing an EDA, if established, to attract businesses and jobs to the County. He is not interested in housing. Vetsch said he is interested in home improvement programs for the elderly because it is cheaper for the County to keep people in their homes. Daleiden said rents in the County are unaffordable for people who make $18 per hour. Kimmel said there may be a time when the County Board decides to get involved with a housing project to bring in more affordable rent levels as part of the County’s economic development strategy.
Kimmel said one option is to set up an EDA and do housing through that agency. Another option is to have a joint HRA with another county. Vetsch said the County cannot dispose of the Government Center and the Health and Human Services Center building unless an EDA is established. Kimmel said the County does not need to have a full strategy outlined from Day 1. The County could start with the property disposition via an EDA. Down the road, the County could draft business development and housing strategies that can be fine-tuned in the future. Kimmel said it may make sense in the future to provide TIF or other limited assistance for senior or work force housing in partnership with another entity. He strongly recommended setting up a standardized process by which the County would receive, evaluate, negotiate, and approve all participation proposals.
Vetsch asked whether the next step would be to establish an exploratory committee appointed by the County Board to make recommendations. Kimmel said that could be a way to involve WCEDP partners in the process.
Kimmel referred to the last slide, “And on Starting a County Development Strategy” to explain the planning process. It makes the most sense to focus on the next three to five years. What can realistically be accomplished with the resources, time and energy available? There are three levels of resources available:
1. Using County resources and “self-determined” financing tools
2. Leveraging “typical HRA / EDA” partners and resources (example, Minnesota Housing)
3. Leveraging partners and resources unique to Wright County
Kimmel advised not going too far or too fast. Potter said the County should start small with the existing Government Center and the Health and Human Services building.
Vetsch said without an EDA, the County can either auction the Government Center or sell it to the City of Buffalo. With an EDA, the County can market it, find partners, develop it, and reap greater rewards. Brian Asleson, Chief Deputy Attorney, said as an EDA, the County would have more power to deal with the property than as a County.
Vetsch suggested appointing people to an exploratory committee. Daleiden suggested meeting with the cities and townships to see if anyone is interested in working on the exploratory committee.
Kimmel referred back to the slide titled “County EDA Establishment.” Subdivision 2 of Statute 469.1082 provides details about the formation of an exploratory committee. They include appointing no fewer than 11 and no more than 15 members, at least one city official, one housing and redevelopment official, and at least one township official. Members may also represent school districts, political subdivisions that currently provide EDA services, nonprofit and for-profit housing and economic development agencies, and labor organizations. Political subdivision representatives must be selected by their local governments, and must constitute at least fifty percent of the total committee membership. The County may appoint no more than two County Commissioners. The committee shall issue a report within ninety days of its initial meeting, and may request one sixty-day extension.
Vetsch recommended that the Administration Department research the makeup of an exploratory committee concerning the creation of an EDA and then draft a resolution. Daleiden said County Administrator Lee Kelly’s workload precludes him from shouldering this task. Kimmel said his firm, Ehlers, has facilitated processes such as this. It is a County process and the County needs to be in charge and determine objectives. As far as organizing meetings, agendas, and steering the committee in a fruitful direction, Ehlers can provide the auxiliary staff functions. Vetsch said the Attorney’s Office can help as well. Kimmel said it is important that local partners understand that the County is not trying to take them over as a big CDA, but that the EDA will initially have a limited focus. The County would like to achieve its objectives in a collaborative way.
Daleiden suggested that Kimmel come back to the County Board Meeting on 2/25/20 or 3/3/20 with a cost proposal.
Recommendation: Direct Bruce Kimmel of Ehlers to bring information to the County Board on 2/25/20 or 3/3/20 regarding the cost, scope of work, and structure of an exploratory committee for a potential Economic Development Authority as required per Statute 469.1802, Subdivision 2.
Minutes submitted by Deb Schreiner, Administrative Specialist
(End of 2-18-20 Committee Of The Whole Minutes)
At today’s County Board Meeting, Potter moved to approve the minutes and recommendations, including approval of the proposal from Marco for technology equipment, PR 111 for $33,197 for the cast stone changes for the entry area, and the change in finishes in the public areas away from venetian plaster. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 4-0.
Daleiden referenced courtroom technologies, and asked for an update on the hire of the audio/visual person. Kelly said the job description is being developed. There was a holdup related to pointing of the position because of the status of the union contract. The position has not been posted for hire.
Discussion followed on interior finishes in the Justice Center. Kelly said staff is looking for direction on how to proceed. Potter said Commissioner Borrell requested the entire Board review whether to change from venetian plaster in the public spaces to tile or paint.
Anthony Enright, Senior Associate, BKV Group, recommends continuing with the venetian plaster product and to look at possible changes to the color and texture options. There would be a cost to change from venetian plaster and it will result in a project delay. Potter said color scheme is part of the issue, but application of the product is also in question. He said Borrell wants this discussed by the entire Board. Enright said it is personal preference and expectation of the finished product. He encouraged the Board to look at options in person. There are various application methods that could be reviewed. In response to a question by Vetsch on the integrity of the product, Enright said it is an appropriate and functional material. The question at hand relates to esthetics. In response to Daleiden, Enright said the Judges prefer a lighter color for the venetian product. Alan Wilczek, Facilities Services Director, said the venetian plaster will be in all public spaces of the Justice Center and encouraged the Board’s review. Enright said about 5% has been applied thus far, and there are about a dozen samples for review.
The motion to accept the 2-19-20 Justice Center Owner’s Committee Minutes carried 4-0.
Potter moved to set an Owners COTW Meeting, Justice Center, on 3-03-20 at 11:00 AM to review the venetian plaster materials so the contractor can move forward. The meeting will be held onsite. The motion was second by Daleiden and carried 4-0.
The 2-19-20 Justice Center Owners Committee Minutes follow:
I. Justice Center Construction Updates
Paulsen updated the group on the three-week schedule.
Level 0 – Contractors are painting the south end of the building with sheetrock and mechanical rough-ins being installed on the north.
Level 1 – Paint is being applied in the Law Enforcement Center connection hallway. Throughout the rest of the floor, fixtures and devices are being installed.
Level 2 – Courtroom wall panels are being mounted, finishing the south and moving to north. After wall panels are completed, the ceiling panels will be hung. The terrazzo floor in the lobby will begin installation tomorrow, followed by restroom wall tile and office flooring in two weeks.
Level 3 – Crews are working on the south courtroom benches and woodwork. Electrical and data cabling is being pulled along with framing the raised platforms. As work is completed they will move north through each courtroom. Terrazzo flooring in the lobby is completing and tile is being installed in area A (public) restrooms. Doors have started to be hung in back-of-house areas but will not be mounted in public zones due to significant contractor traffic and risk of damage.
Penthouse – refrigeration piping is ongoing.
Filippi spoke to the long-term schedule, noting substantial completion in July with move in planned for late August / early September. He spoke to the project budget and explained the negative balance on contingency being a result of site work caused by the addition of the Government Center project. The change orders will be paid from the Government Center funds and result in a positive balance to the Justice Center. Overall the budget is satisfactory and the contingency balance is in line with a project of this size.
Filippi spoke to the PR items noted on the agenda and Wilczek requested that after the meeting the committee look at the metal / stone entry option as well as the venetian plaster for recommendations.
Judge Tenney asked about the east parking area and the security plans around the staff parking lot. There was discussion about the conceptual plans, however Wilczek noted they have not been final designed and options are still being reviewed. He noted that when design is completed it will be presented for committee review.
Schwartzman and Wilczek spoke to courtroom technology and that it is being priced to potentially change some system components to avoid issues that were experienced with similar technology in Sherburne County. Wilczek noted that options and pricing are still not complete but will be brought before the committee for discussion when ready.
Wilczek presented a proposal for IT infrastructure (Marco, 2-18-20) in the server and IDF rooms, noting the cost was below budget. Mark Kellogg was present to field questions regarding the types of equipment in the proposal.
Following the meeting, the committee gathered inside the building to review the cast stone option for the entry and the venetian plaster.
RECOMMENDATIONS: Approve the technology equipment proposal from Marco, approve the cast stone change for the entry area (PR 111), and request that BKV present options to potentially change finishes in the public areas away from venetian plaster.
Next meeting March 18, 2020.
Justice Center Owner’s Committee Minutes Submitted by: Alan Wilczek, Facilities Services Director
(End of 2-19-20 Justice Center Owner’s Committee Minutes)
At today’s County Board Meeting, Potter moved to approve the minutes. The motion was seconded by Daleiden. Husom made the following change to the minutes: Page 1, 2nd paragraph, 6th line, correct the spelling of the word “serving.” The motion carried 4-0. The 2-19-20 New Government Center Owner’s Committee Minutes follow:
I. New Government Center Updates
Loesch spoke to the short term schedule and gave an update on the concrete tower pours and the steel erection. The concrete contractor is currently working on the furthest west tower and two levels of steel will continue to be erected from east to west as the tower is completed. PR9 (3rd floor changes) steel is going into production, and when completed, the east end of the building will be installed on levels 2 & 3. Loesch noted the concrete decks will start to be poured on area C (east) the week of March 9th.
Filippi spoke to the budget and the contingency balances, noting there are a number of moving pieces with changes to the site/parking, the 3rd floor, and the parking structure. PR9 change orders have not been fully executed, however only a couple of contractors remain in discussion to verify pricing. He spoke to the breakdown sheet attached to the agenda and noted the pricing is currently under $3.2M as compared to the original board presentation of ~$3.8M. There was discussion about the underground sanitary line serving the facililty and changes required to upsize and accommodate additional volume with the planned dental clinic. The pricing is not yet finalized, however it was determined through a code official that the pipe burst option to replace the pipe is not a viable option and there will need to be a trench opened to lay new piping.
Filippi and Wilczek spoke to parking arrangements and the parking structure. Given Board direction at the original project bid review meeting to achieve additional stall counts while reducing finishes, the team has worked to a point where it will be near cost neutral from the original approved alternate pricing. Goodrum Schwartz asked about the possibility of a Health and Human Services drop box as well as a location for services like Trailblazer to drop members of the public; Wilczek noted locations on the site that would accommodate both.
Next meeting 3/18/19.
Owners Committee Minutes New Government Center Submitted by: Alan Wilczek, Facilities Services Director
(End of 2-19-20 Owners Committee Minutes New Government Center)
At today’s County Board Meeting, Potter moved to approve the minutes and recommendations. The motion was seconded by Daleiden. Daleiden referenced the cost spread in the proposals for the propane tank systems. He asked whether the low bidder, AmeriGas, has included everything in their bid. Wilczek said there is not a good explanation for the vast difference in price, but the proposals are based on the same content and discussion. The contractors have been in contact with RJM, so the scope is understood. The motion to approve the minutes carried 4-0. Potter applauded the Information Technology Department for their efforts in getting things addressed in a timely manner.
The 2-18-20 Owners Committee Minutes, Tactical Training Center, follow:
I. Tactical Training Center Updates
McKenzie spoke to the upcoming schedule. He indicated the roofing activity should be completed in approximately 1 week. The upper level is completed, but the lower roof is still being worked on. The temp heat has been running inside and the frost has completely gone out. The underground work is underway and the mechanical & electrical piping is being placed. The second floor concrete deck will be poured on Wednesday, February 26th and the whole building poured by the first week of March.
O’Hearn noted a coordination meeting that took place with the Sheriff’s department related to the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and a couple of pending changes that developed. Cabinets for EOC responder equipment are being developed for the west wall and floor box locations have changed for electrical & data.
There was discussion related to the waste holding tank that is being required for the drain in the storage area. The plan has not yet been fully developed, but it is currently being worked on and will be priced for review. O’Hearn and Wilczek spoke to the PR items A-I on the agenda; all are minor changes and are mostly coordination / final review related.
Hoffman spoke to a key management system in the facility that would allow for minimization of hard key distribution yet allow for hard key use where needed by training or response personnel. The electronic box allows for someone to check out a key with an assigned code or electronic key card. These systems are being installed at the Law Enforcement Center and this box would be an extension of that system to better track the use of physical keys. Cost was presented as $12,121.50.
Wilczek spoke to proposals for propane tank systems at the site and EOC technology. The propane system low cost proposal was from AmeriGas at $17,992.37. The system would be an outright puchase as to allow Wright County to use any provider it chooses to fill & maintain the tanks. The EOC technology proposal from Spye was presented and discussed amongst the group at a cost of $270161.26. This package would fulfill the needs of the emergency response team as well as fit the room to double as a training room. Several monitors would be mounted around the room with a touch pad controller driving the content to given displays. The proposal has been submitted for emergency funding through HSEM, and it is anticipated that a large portion of the cost will be approved.
RECOMMENDATIONS: Approve the key management system, propane system, and EOC technology package. Next meeting March 17, 2020.
Owners Committee Minutes Tactical Training Center Minutes Submitted by: Alan Wilczek, Facilities Services Director
(End of 2-18-20 Owners Committee Minutes, Tactical Training Center)
At today’s County Board Meeting, Daleiden moved to approve the minutes. The motion was seconded by Vetsch and carried 4-0. The Technology Committee Minutes follow:
I. ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) Update
County Administrator, Lee Kelly, updated the Committee on the progress of ERP. The implementation vendor has been on site to begin the alignment of processes with design. Review started on October 28th with procurement, which went relatively well experiencing some bumps along the way. Accounts Payable and operational activities are being reviewed as well. The General Ledger Chart of Accounts will be reviewed next. Many more ERP sessions with Ciber have been scheduled throughout the next two months. February will consist of configuration sessions as well. Pete Sorensen, the new ERP Administrator, began in his new role on Monday the 4th, he arrived at the County and went straight to the ERP sessions. Kelly also updated that the ERP Charter will be released soon.
Jim O’Dell, HHS (Health & Human Services), asked if ACH will be included in the ERP process. Bob Hiivala, County Auditor Treasurer, stated that it is being addressed and worked on, but will be dealt with outside of ERP.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Only.
II. Project Progress
IT Director, Matthew Fomby, presented the Committee with a prioritized list of Active projects for November and December. He began the discussion noting that almost 200% of two Business Analysts, BA, time is being taken by ERP. 100% of BA Scott Weiland’s time is taken by ERP, officially 50% of BA ConnieMae Cooper’s time is taken by ERP as well. It was noted that Cooper has other projects she is working on, but ERP is impeding upon them more than the 50% spread. Andrea Benedict, BA, is managing all other projects. IT has been pushing forward with hiring another BA, there have been several good candidates.
The Committee did not have questions on the projects as presented. Captain Todd Hoffman, Sheriff’s Department, brought up the FBI Training Facility and discussion about it being the possible back up Data Recovery Site. IT Client Services Manager Mark Kellogg, stated that the IT Department has extensively deliberated on this topic. The team has decided that the FBI Training Facility is too geographically close to safely be considered as the backup Data Recovery Site. IT is looking into working with another County entity to partner with them to host the backup equipment. The State of MN welcomes this collaboration by allowing use of the State’s Fiber for sharing. Fomby also noted that at a recent MNCITLA, The Minnesota County Information Technology Leaders Association, meeting many Counties were very positive about this type of idea.
RECOMMENDATION: Information Only
III. IT Staffing
IT Director, Matthew Fomby, gave direction for his staffing plans, which he will be discussing with the Board at an upcoming Committee of the Whole. Fomby identified staffing needs for the IT Department beginning with an IT Security Specialist, to assist with physical and technical training, this position would work under the IT infrastructure team. Due to the size and complexity of the IT Budget he will also be discussing an Office Manager position at the Committee of the Whole. The final position he is looking at revisiting down the road, which was requested and let go in the budget process, is the Application Portfolio Manager, this position assists to ensure staff are utilizing the resources available to them. Funding sources have been identified, Fomby will work with Kelly on the plan.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Only.
IV. Cyber Incident Response Plan
IT Director, Matthew Fomby, along with County Risk Manager, Tim Dahl, have been reviewing the County’s Cyber Incident Response Plan. The top priority of this plan is to isolate and mitigate an event, dealing with any fallout after the incident has been resolved, allowing the County to focus on immediate recovery and restoration. The plan will be reviewed by Fomby and Dahl, IT Management, Department Heads & County Leadership, all providing guidance as well as clarification of roles and expectations. The plan is in progress. Commissioner Vetsch noted to ensure diligence in regards to Federal and State guidelines. Also, to include the County Legal Team in review. The timeline for the plan is to have departments review in the coming months, with signature following.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Only.
Technology Committee Minutes submitted by: Jennifer Rasset
(End of 11-06-19 Technology Committee Minutes)
At today’s County Board Meeting, Daleiden moved to approve the minutes. The motion was seconded by Vetsch and carried 4-0. The minutes follow:
I. ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) Update
County Administrator, Lee Kelly, updated the Committee on the progress of ERP. ERP sessions have continued during the month of December, with a break around the Holiday Season, sessions will resume in January.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Only.
II. Project Progress
IT Director, Matthew Fomby, introduced the Committee to the new IT Business Analyst, BA, Kevin Kaszynski, he is helping to fill the BA gap that has been left by ERP utilizing staff resources. Becki Murphy, IT Project Portfolio Analyst, brought the Committee through the current projects being worked on as well as a breakdown of time being spent on them. Murphy advised the Committee to bring future projects to IT, as well to let IT know if any projects should be updated or dropped off the list. A few project highlights being the Highway Fleet system which is moving forward; Cash Drawer registers have been purchased; Building work is progressing. Murphy clarified how building projects were listed at the request of Captain Todd Hoffman. County Surveyor Steve Jobe requested that the SharePoint project data be cleaned up to provide an easier viewing of information. The Committee also discussed the County Voice environment specifically Unified Messaging and Supervisors having Voicemail to Email setup.
RECOMMENDATION: Information Only
III. New USB Policy
IT Director, Matthew Fomby, next brought the Committee to the planned USB Policy. In an effort to ensure County Data is kept safe, the IT team is working to close a vulnerability with USB devices. The policy uses existing technology to block certain USB devices form loading onto a computer. The Committee had a deep discussion of this plan, as many of the department’s deal with USB devices on a daily basis, where this plan would have a substantial impact. Fomby stated that IT will work with the departments to discover and clarify these exceptions, while also offering solutions to both safeguard County data and keep processes effective. ConnieMae Cooper is the assigned Business Analyst for this project, she will continue meeting with departments to clarify USB uses and note exception requests. Due to the presented challenges this project was suggested to have a delayed cutover with an IT reassessment in January after department discussions.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Only. Extend implementation date to ensure departments and IT have clarity in business processes.
IV. Fiber to FBI Building
Mark Kellogg, IT Client Services Manager, updated the Committee on the plan to bring Fiber to the FBI Tactical Training Center. Captain Todd Hoffman stressed the need to sign a contract soon with the organization who will be digging the line; which County Administrator Lee Kelly agreed that a decision needs to be made soon. Kellogg responded that he will work with Facilities Services Director, Alan Wilczek, and Captain Hoffman to ensure contracts are signed and the project is moving ahead.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Only.
Technology Committee Minutes submitted by: Jennifer Rasset
(End of 12-18-19 Technology Committee Minutes)
At today’s County Board Meeting, Daleiden moved to approve the minutes. The motion was seconded by Potter. Kelly stated that the ERP focus this week is on time, attendance, and payroll. Sessions will resume after the break the week of 3-09-20. Daleiden asked if things are going as expected. Kelly responded this is a large project so there have been some issues, but things are generally pointed in the right direction. The vendor is gathering information on County processes and configuring the system. Daleiden said ERP is a complete software system with a goal of streamlining for efficiency. Kelly said the County will adopt the best practices when possible. The motion to approve the minutes carried 4-0. The minutes follow:
I. ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) Update
County Administrator, Lee Kelly, updated the Committee on the progress of ERP. ERP continues to move forward with review of use cases with Ciber. Ciber will continue to provide additional support through the end of February / beginning of March, as the work on coding the County ERP Environment continues. Presently the plan is to begin testing the product late summer 2020. On February 6th Ciber will begin the HCM, Human Capital Management, sessions to review core Benefits and HR, Human Resource, functions.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Only.
II. VPN (Virtual Private Network) Update
IT Client Services Manager, Mark Kellogg, updated the Committee on the VPN remote access solution for County Staff. The project is moving along with the hardware setup beginning on February 4th. The process will be documented to provide a guide for how to establish the connection. The system will allow 500 staff to remote in, HHS, Health and Human Services, staff will be the first department to be setup in the environment. Commissioner Mark Daleiden asked if VPN will allow staff to do everything as if they were here, Kellogg responded with a yes. IT will continue to work on the VPN project and will provide updates as the project progresses.
RECOMMENDATION: Information Only
III. Project Portfolio Update
IT Project Portfolio Analyst, Rebecca Murphy, reviewed the existing IT project portfolio with the Committee. EDMS HHS SS (Electronic Document Management System, Health and Human Services, Social Services) was reviewed by ConnieMae Cooper, IT Business Analyst (BA), and Jim O’Dell, HHS Technology Supervisor. This project is moving along well with issues that come up being easily resolvable. HHS is thankful for Cooper’s OnBase application knowledge. This project has encompassed many areas: RightFax, Advanced Capture, Mobile Broker. Presently it appears on track to be under budget. There have been over 1000 hours put into this project, this extensive time commitment has allowed a broader number of people to become familiar with and gain expertise with the product. HHS is looking forward to wrapping up a big milestone with the EDMS HHS SS project.
Matthew Fomby, IT Director, reviewed the upcoming Text Message Retention project which will begin with a pilot group of HHS staff. The project provides a useable solution for retaining records of importance that are transmitted via text message. The project will kick off mid-February, expansion to the rest of the County will depend on how the testing with the pilot group goes.
The Assessor’s CAMA (Computer-Assisted Mass Appraisal), property assessment solution was the next project reviewed by Fomby. He noted that the Assessor’s department, assisted by Andrea Benedict IT BA, have been putting in a lot of work and research into selecting a new foundation product for the County. They have seen several demos, traveling to other counties to take in functionality as well. They are looking at Cloud and On-premise solutions. Discussion noted that the Tyler vendor has a solution for both Tax and CAMA, as the two applications need to work together for the County. It was also noted that SAAS CAMA was not working well for Iowa. The Assessor’s department will continue to move forward with review of vendors and products.
Commissioner Darek Vetsch discussed if the County has Software Connectivity Maps, to show how our software and applications connect and talk to each other. Fomby replied that this is a goal of the IT Department with the Application Portfolio Analyst position being a key role to engage this process. Commissioner Vetsch stated that it would be great to find efficiencies between applications. Cooper added that it also assists when updating an application, what that action may do to another application, you can change one thing here but how does it impact others. With the Application Portfolio Analyst position IT can take a closer look at Software Connectivity Maps.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Only.
IV. IT Staffing
Captain Todd Hoffman brought up IT Staffing due to the recent departure of a key IT Infrastructure staff member. Discussion revolved around the role this position plays in the County, how it can move projects ahead or delay them, due to the workload. Hoffman noted that it has been great to be able to work with the added BA’s to manage projects, but that this position’s departure made it clear that IT needs more Infrastructure staff members. Kellogg informed the Committee that he is pushing forward with hiring and filling the position as soon as possible. For the here and now IT has a Contractor that will start in the coming days to fill in the void. For expanding the Infrastructure team Kellogg also discussed the development of an Infrastructure Supervisor position. Improved cross training of IT staff was also advised. For improved hiring options IT noted implementation of the new Class and Comp pay ranges should help attract quality candidates; the range increases are presently delayed due to ongoing Union Negotiations.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Only.
Technology Committee Minutes submitted by: Jennifer Rasset
(End of 1-22-20 Technology Committee Minutes)
1. Administrator Updates
1. Employee Recognition. Kelly said employees were recognized for years of service at the annual Employee Recognition Ceremony, and extended congratulations to the following employees who received awards:
Individual Achievement Award Jeremy Baker, Civilian Communications Officer, Sheriff’s Office
Individual Achievement Award Shannon Tucker, Social Worker, Human Services
Group Achievement Award Veteran Services: Debbie Ernst, Colleen Majkrzak, Steve Svoboda, Gregory Pickard
2. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). Meetings continue this week on HCM (Human Capital Management).
3. Kelly met with Parks and Highway on the logistics of storage at the Public Works building for the new ditch and drainage position.
4. Trailblazer. Kelly attended a meeting on 2-21-20 where Trailblazer kicked off their construction project. This included meeting with architects on the schedule and items that Kelly will focus on. This includes working with the Attorney’s Office, and assistance with bidding and financial. Kelly will share the schedule once received.
5. Kelly said the Procurement Analyst position will be filled soon. The position will assist with the procurement aspects of ERP.
6. AMC (Association of Minnesota Counties) Legislative Conference. The Conference is being held this week.
7. Wright County Transit Advisory Committee Meeting. Vetsch attended. Discussion centered on ridership. There is over a 100% increase in ridership from 2018 to 2019 in the cities of Otsego and Cokato. Many cities desire commuter connections but that will be addressed in the future (5-6 years) as there are not enough buses to meet the demand of Dial-A-Ride bus services. There are four new buses and two should be in service in the next few months. Due to the backlog in drivers testing, those wanting to obtain licenses to drive buses are not getting on the schedule and therefore may seek employment elsewhere. Potter touched on the funding by legislature for rural transit. If the desire is to meet the rural transit goals, the state needs to fund it. He attended a conference yesterday on rural transit and transportation funding. This topic is not on the Governor’s radar. The $1.3 billion in surplus dollars could be used to fix this instead of focusing on funding future expenditures.
8. Vetsch, staff, and Flaherty & Hood lobbyists were at the State Capitol last week, working on a variety of different bills.
HF 3300. Some of the legislators in Wright County signed onto the bill which will hopefully provide change to the drivers’ road testing in Minnesota. Flaherty & Hood are helping to connect the bill to a similar bill introduced by Rep. Paul Novotny that is more designed to privatize road testing. The Wright County version is similar on privatizing the testing but would require testing to be completed by a deputy registrar. Efforts are being geared toward these two bills as well as connecting with the deputy registrars’ group to devise a cohesive plan.
Bills for bonding requests. Vetsch said they introduced the bills related to bonding requests.
Potter applauded Vetsch on his work at the State Capital, making sure Wright County is at the table on these issues.
9. Ditch 33 Workgroup Meeting. Vetsch said the first Ditch 33 Workgroup Meeting was held. Detjen may be presenting information at the 3-03-20 Board Meeting. He supports this forum as the go-to methodology for ditch systems that have high cost barriers and a contentious environment. Those that attended were the 3-5 largest landowners on the ditch and city staff. The time was spent educating those in attendance on process and what has to be done by law. He said there is appreciation by landowners involved with the workgroup meeting. He said it could be 18 months before they proceed with the redetermination of benefits while they determine what to do.
10. Great River Regional Library Board. Potter attended a meeting on 2-18-20. The group discussed interpreter services and decided that those services should be the responsibility of St. Cloud.
11. 7W Transportation Committee. Potter attended a meeting on 2-21-20. Wright County was not awarded funding for the CR 36 project east of I-94. He hopes the project will receive a higher rating next year. The recent projects for the Hwy. 101 river crossing and the I-94 project did not help with the scoring process as they are so new. Transportation alternative projects were also submitted for Howard Lake and for Dassel-Cokato. Those did not score well but it may be because they were submitted last minute.
12. I-94 Corridor Coalition. Potter attended a meeting on 2-20-20. The group received an update on the B.U.I.L.D. (Better Utilizing Investments To Leverage Development) grant that was not received. The B.U.I.L.D. grant was received previously for I-94 for two years in a row. It may be several before it is awarded again. Focus will be on educating those who score the projects on the importance of this regional national connection, with I-94 connecting to places like Seattle and Chicago. It is recommended that with future grant applications, separate letters of support should be sent by all congressional leaders and senators, followed up with a phone call and meeting with the FHWA (Federal Highway Administration). He understands there should also be more CEO interaction from large corporations positioned along the I-94 corridor to Seattle and Chicago.
13. Transportation Alliance. Potter said the I-94 Corridor Coalition will not join the Transportation Alliance, as the cities and the county on that corridor are already members.
14. MET Council. Potter said the MET Council did a corridor study on TH 55 and I-94. The I-94 corridor serves 85-87 counties in the State. This is an important piece of information when applying for funding. Vetsch thanked Potter for his efforts to obtain federal funding for projects.
15. Employee Wellness Program. Daleiden gave a shout out to Risk Management and the Wellness Committee for their efforts. Wellness programs have been implemented for County staff, which has resulted in keeping insurance costs down and getting employees involved in wellness activities.
16. City of St. Michael Meeting. Daleiden attended a meeting on 2-24-20 where discussion involved the County Strategic Planning Workshop Sessions that will be held the week of 3-09-20. He explained the vision of counties and cities working together.
17. Wright County Emergency Medical Services Advisory Council. Husom attended a recent meeting, and also the Fire Chiefs Meeting that was held afterwards. The Coronavirus was discussed. One Minnesota person is quarantined in California. There has been a spike in Influenza A in schools. Normally Influenza A shows up prior to Influenza B, but the opposite happened this year. At the Fire Chiefs Meeting, a DNR (Department of Natural Resources) representative spoke about potential processes for burning permits.
18. AIS (Aquatic Invasive Species). Husom attended a meeting last week. Demonstrations were planned on the CD3 decontamination station, but the person was unable to attend. The budget was discussed. Inspectors will present one day per week (10-hour shifts) at the 28 ramps in the system. Inspectors are paid $18/hour. Treatment grants of $3,000 per lake are being offered in 2020. A lake survey can be completed at a cost of $750 to identify invasive species present. Last year, $35,159 was provided to 18 lake associations for treatment of invasive species. This is important work that needs to be continued to retain the lake quality. Vetsch said over $60,000 will be available to treat lakes. Daleiden stated that AIS funding involves pass through dollars that the State provides based on the number of DNR ramps and parking spaces at the ramps.
19. Husom said Annandale Police Chief Jeff Herr will retire the end of March. She acknowledged the work he has done over the past 30 years and extended congratulations.
20. Husom said the County Board may consider a resolution on the Second Amendment right to bear arms at their 3-03-20 Board Meeting. Katie Lunden, Annandale, asked whether the public will be allowed to speak on the topic. Husom said comments will be limited to 2-3 minutes. If one person speaks on behalf a group, they will be limited to 5 minutes. Kelly said the County received information from legislators on recommended language for the resolution.
The meeting adjourned at 10:32 A.M.
Minutes submitted by Susan Backes, Clerk to the County Board
Warrants Approved On 2/13/2020 For Payment 2/13/2020
At&t Mobility $5,250.26
Central MN Council On Aging Inc 6,587.00
Creative Product Sourcing Inc 5,320.78
Eddy/Elizabeth Ann 34,333.33
I & S Group Inc 5,052.40
Interprose Corporation/The 2,458.29
Intoximeters Inc 9,200.00
Lano Equipment Inc 50,938.49
Laumann’s Outdoors 18,978.23
MN Inter County Association 2,000.00
Presbyterian Family Foundation 4,047.00
Ralston/Matthew 7,050.00
Streichers 2,275.00
Thomson, Reuters, West Pub. 2,114.31
Trimin Systems Inc 42,178.00
Verizon Wireless Services LLC 11,765.28
60 payments less than $2,000 24,343.67
Final Total $233,892.04
Published in the Herald Journal March 13, 2020.