BOARD MINUTES BOARD OF WRIGHT COUNTY COMMISSIONERSDECEMBER 14, 2021DATE APPROVED: DECEMBER 21, 2021
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Husom, Vetsch, Daleiden, Wetter, and Kaczmarek present.
COUNTY BOARD MINUTES 11-30-21 MEETING
Commissioner Christine Husom moved to approve the minutes from 11-30-21. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Mary Wetter and carried 5-0.
County Administrator Lee Kelly requested to remove Timed Item B1, Approve Resolution Certifying Delinquent Utility Amounts For A Property Located In Rockford Township, as the issue has been resolved.
Commissioner Darek Vetsch moved to approve the Agenda with the removal of Timed Item B1. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Mike Kaczmarek and carried 5-0.
Kaczmarek requested to remove items F2 and G1 from the Consent Agenda for further discussion.
Kaczmarek moved to approve the Consent Agenda with the removal of items F2 and G1. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0.
*Items removed from the consent agenda for further discussion.
1. Authorize The Posting Of The Requests For Proposal (RFP) Documents For The Construction Of The Dental Clinic Space. The Procurement Method Will Be Sealed Bids, And The Project Delivery Method Will Be Design-Bid-Build, Best-Value
2. Approve The Following Grant Applications:
A. CITY-002 Clearwater Watermain Looping ($70,828)
B. HWY-001 Otsego Maintenance Shop Expansion ($1,600,000)
B. ADMINISTRATION FINANCE
1. Acknowledge Warrants Issued Between November 24, 2021 And December 7, 2021 (See Below,
Item IX. Warrants Issued)
2. Approve Renewal Of 2022 Tobacco Licenses For:
A. Midwest Investment, LLC DBA Mini Mart #13 (Maple Lake)
B. Madigan’s Pub & Grill DBA Madigan’s Pub & Grill (Maple Lake)
C. JCGH, LLC DBA Napa Valley Liquors (Otsego)
D. Ske, Inc. DBA H&H Sport Shop (Maple Lake)
3. Approve A 2022 Tobacco License For Super Tobacco 2, LLC DBA Delano Tobacco (Delano)
4. Motion To Approve The Reimbursement Of $4,503.57 From 01-099-493.6910
Transfer Out Into 01-100-493.5910 Transfer In As Follows:
$658.89 For Administrative Expenses-Staff Costs
$3,844.68 For 1.8 Other COVID-19 Public Health Expenses-Emergency Paid Sick Leave
Approval Of Use of ARP Funds From 01-099-493-8428.6261
$1,972.70 7.1 Administrative Expenses-Consultant Support
C. ADMINISTRATION HUMAN RESOURCES
1. Request Approval Of A Memorandum Of Agreement (MOA) For The County Contributions For The 2022 Health Insurance Plans With The Wright County Deputies Association (WCDA)
2. Request Approval And Authorization Of Signature Of A Memorandum Of Agreement (MOA) To Allow Wright County Deputy Association (WCDA) And Non-Union Employees To Donate Accrued Vacation/PTO Time To Sheriff Deputy Paul Fladung
3. Request Approval And Authorization Of Signature Of A Memorandum Of Agreement (MOA) To Allow I.U.O.E. Local 49 Members To Donate Accrued PTO Time To Sheriff Deputy Paul Fladung
4. Request Approval And Authorization Of Signature Of A Memorandum Of Agreement (MOA) To Allow Teamsters Local 320 (Courthouse) Members To Donate Accrued PTO Time To Sheriff Deputy Paul Fladung
D. AG & DRAINAGE
1. Approve Request To Backfill The Open Agricultural And Drainage Inspector Position
E. HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES
1. Approve Two-Year Renewal For Period 2022-01-01 To 2023-12-31 Michelle E. Muller Contract To Provide County-Funded Professional Guardianship And/Or Conservatorship Services For Individuals Under The Jurisdiction Of The Wright County District Court No Changes
2. Refer To Personnel Committee 1FT CADI Waiver Social Worker
3. Position Replacement
A. Office Technician I
B. Eligibility Specialist
C. Eligibility Specialist
D. Social Worker (.5FT)
E. Health Promotion Coordinator
F. INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
1. Approve Purchase In The Amount Of $355,435.61 To Insight For NetApp Storage
2. *Approve The Contracting Of A Project Manager
G. PLANNING & ZONING
1. *Planning Commission And Board Of Adjustment Appointments
A. Reappoint Jan Thompson (First District) For A Three-Year Term On The Planning Commission
B. Reappoint Dan Mol (At Large) For A Three-Year Term On The Planning Commission
C. Reappoint Dan Mol (Second District) For A Three-Year Term On The Board Of Adjustment
ITEMS PULLED FROM THE CONSENT AGENDA TO BE DISCUSSED
F. INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
2. Approve The Contracting Of A Project Manager
Kaczmarek stated the Request for Board Action (RFBA) submitted by Information Technology Director Matthew Fomby provides limited information and expressed the importance of having the information available for the public. Vetsch stated the contract is for implementation of the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. Fomby stated he was tasked with finding a Project Manager with the skills required for ERP implementation. The individual selected was interviewed by members of Administration and has previous relevant experience.
Kaczmarek questioned how long the county has been working on the project. County Administrator Lee Kelly responded the most recent part of the project is the implementation phase which began in September 2019. Prior to that, there was a scoping and investigation phase which started in 2017. Once the scoping and investigation phase was complete, the vendor selection process took approximately one year.
Kaczmarek questioned if the county has used the On-Demand Services Group before. Fomby responded yes; the county has used contractors to complete specific tasks during a specific period when external support was needed. Fomby added it is cheaper to hire a specialist for certain things rather than having a full-time employee. Kaczmarek questioned how many contractors and county staff are currently working on the project. Fomby responded a Business Analyst is dedicated to the project and nearly every department has had something to do with the ERP project.
Fomby stated the expectation is to implement the Finance portion of ERP within six months. Vetsch suggested scheduling a Committee of the Whole meeting or adding the topic to an upcoming Workshop for further discussion of the implementation timeline.
Kaczmarek questioned how much the county has spent on the project so far. Vetsch responded Sierra-Cedar will be charging an hourly rate for implementation. Vetsch added the county was placed in a difficult position due to the termination of the original implementation contract with Ciber. Finance Director Lindsey Meyer stated approximately $2.2 million has been spent out of the Capital Improvement Projects (CIP) fund. Commissioner Mark Daleiden stated the county is hoping to receive funds for the issues experienced during the contract with Ciber. Vetsch added it is difficult to determine the true cost because the county is still in negotiations.
Kaczmarek questioned if the contracted individual will be working in-person or remote. Fomby responded the individual will have a hybrid work schedule. The individual will be coordinating with all departments to ensure the implementation timeline is met.
G. PLANNING & ZONING
1. Planning Commission And Board Of Adjustment Appointments
Kaczmarek discussed the process of appointing and re-appointing members to boards and committees. Kaczmarek stated when a term expired for a position within District 5, he requested to post the position on the website and Facebook page. Kaczmarek stated citizens have inquired about how to become members on committees. Daleiden stated the decision is up to the commissioner of the district.
The commissioners agreed each commissioner can determine how to handle vacancies within their districts.
Kaczmarek moved to approve Item F2 (Information Technology) and Item G1 (Planning & Zoning) on the Consent Agenda. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0.
TIMED AGENDA ITEMS
BRIAN LUTES, ATTORNEY
Have Chairperson And County Administrator Sign An Approval Of Appointment And Oath For Rachel E. Pence, Assistant County Attorney
Vetsch moved to authorize signatures on the approval of appointment and oath for Rachel Pence. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0.
Introduction Of Rachel E. Pence, Assistant Wright County Attorney, To The Board
County Attorney Brian Lutes introduced Assistant County Attorney Rachel Pence. Pence attended Hamline University and attended Law School in San Diego. Pence has previous experience in Douglas County and Benton County. The commissioners welcomed Pence.
**Item removed from Agenda
**JOHN BOWEN, ATTORNEY
Approve Resolution Certifying Delinquent Utility Amounts For A Property Located In Rockford Township, Wright County, Minnesota
Wetter questioned if the county would receive any funds for the work that was done on the matter. Lutes responded no; the matter has been settled.
MARC MATTICE, PARKS & RECREATION
Take Action On Parks Commission Recommendation, Authorizing The Parks And Recreation Department To Apply For Three Grants Offered Through The MN DNR Local Grants Program:
A. Outdoor Recreation Grant: This Will Be A $300k Grant Application/Request With A $300k Match From ARP Funds. This Would Be Used To Assist With Redevelopment Expenses At Schroeder Park Planned For 2023
B. Outdoor Recreation Grant: This Is A $75k Grant Application/Request With A $125k Match From ARP Funds. This Would Be Used To Purchase And Install Replacement Playground Equipment At Montissippi Park Planned For 2024
C. Conservation Partnership Collaboration: This Is A $50k Grant Application/Request With A $5k In-Kind Match From County Labor Forces. This Would Be Used To Continue Invasive Buckthorn Management At Bertram Chain Of Lakes Regional Park
Kaczmarek questioned if the matching grants were already approved through the American Rescue Plan (ARP). Parks and Recreation Director Marc Mattice responded yes. Mattice stated the Conservation Partnership Collaboration would require the county to monitor electric fences and fill water tanks for the goats.
Mattice added the grants are due at the end of March and awards will be announced in July.
Vetsch moved to authorize the Parks and Recreation Department to apply for all three grants offered through the Minnesota DNR Local Grants Program. The motion was seconded by Kaczmarek and carried 5-0.
GREG KRYZER, PLANNING & ZONING
Adopt Resolution To Approve A Clean Water Partnership Loan Application. Funding To Provide Low Interest Loans To Wright County Residents To Upgrade Non-Compliant Subsurface Sewage Treatment Systems (SSTS)
Civil Division Chief Attorney Greg Kryzer requested an increase in the amount used for low interest septic loans. Kryzer stated the program was instituted approximately 10 years ago and has been very successful. The current allocation of funds has been exhausted.
Kaczmarek questioned if the fees cover the administrative costs. Kryzer responded the county’s administrative costs are covered. Kaczmarek stated the program is available to all residents and there are no restrictions based on income or property size. Kryzer stated commercial properties are not eligible. Residents could receive the full replacement cost of their system. Individuals must complete the process and the county pays the contractor directly. Kryzer stated the county secures the debt by putting an assessment on the property.
Vetsch moved to adopt the resolution to approve a Clean Water Partnership Loan Application. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Vetsch moved to adopt the resolution appointing Scott Deckert as the designee. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
INTRODUCTION OF BARRY RHINEBERGER
Daleiden introduced Barry Rhineberger as the new Planning & Zoning Administrator. The commissioners and Kelly congratulated Rhineberger on being hired to the position.
ITEMS FOR CONSIDERATION
PERSONNEL COMMITTEE 11/24/2021
Kaczmarek moved to approve the Personnel Committee minutes from Wednesday, November 24, 2021. The motion was seconded by Vetsch and carried 5-0.
A. Parks & Recreation
1. Discuss Restructuring the Campground Manager Positions and Park Maintenance Aide Position
Marc Mattice, Director of Parks & Recreation presented to committee members the need to reallocate staff resources within the Park/Guest Services team. Mattice explained that the Park Services team manages the daily operations and maintenance of Collinwood, Schroeder, Bertram, and Robert Ney Parks. He continued to share that the need to build resiliency in this aspect of operations is more evident than ever. Mattice noted that the Parks & Recreation Department had a Campground Manager who was out for a significant amount of time this year due to a health issue and hiring seasonal staff is becoming more challenging. He also reported that the Park Maintenance Aide position is also vacant due to a recent resignation.
Mattice stated that Wright County has enhanced its camping opportunities to include 162 sites and six camper cabins. In comparison to our surrounding counties (Anoka, Carver, Stearns, Scott, and Washington), Wright County has the most number of campgrounds and camp sites.
Discussion took place regarding the restructuring of the Campground Manager and the Park Maintenance Aide
positions. The goal is to reallocate staff to help create more unified management of the campgrounds and equipment rentals, provide more personalized attention to each park user, provide better service related to refuse removal and facility cleaning throughout the year, improve user experiences and satisfaction, and build a more consistent organization.
Mattice offered three options for the Personnel Committee to review and consider:
1. Option 1- Continue with the existing personnel model in which the County has two part-time Campground Managers at Schroeder and Collinwood Park for six months each year and hire one full-time Park Maintenance Aide. The projected cost to the County is $142,744 per year.
2. Options 2- The Parks & Recreation Department’s preferred option is to increase the Campground Manager positions from a 6-month position to a 12-month position and the hiring of full-time Park Maintenance Aide. The County’s current costs for contractual services with Greenview and a reduction in seasonal employee costs would equate of a projected cost of $169,035 per year (1.5 percent cost increase) for the County.
3. Option 3- This option involves the reclassification of two Campground Managers from a six-month seasonal position to a full-time (12 months) position with the County. The County would not hire a Park Maintenance Aide position in Option 3. The proposed cost for Option 3 is $139,182 per year.
Discussions among the committee members occurred regarding the budgetary impacts of the three proposed options that were presented by Mattice along with the pros and cons of each option. Concerns were also raised regarding the County’s struggles with recruiting seasonal employees in this challenging economy. Commissioner Darek Vetsch commented that there is also a higher risk of liability when the County utilizes more inexperienced seasonal staff. Commissioners Vetsch and Mike Kaczmarek agreed to keep the Park Maintenance Aide position in the 2022 budget and begin advertising for the vacant position in January for a projected start date of March 1, 2022. The Personnel Committee members also recommended approval of the recommendation to increase the two part-time Campground Managers to full-time positions beginning on a date to be yet to be determined in 2022.
RECOMMENDATION: Approve the Parks Department request to reclassify two part-time (six months) Campground Manager positions to two full-time (12 months) Campground Managers in 2022.
TECHNOLOGY COMMITTEE 11/24/2021
Vetsch moved to approve the Technology Committee meeting minutes from Wednesday, November 24, 2021, with the removal of Commissioner Daleiden from the list of those present. The motion was seconded by Kaczmarek and carried 5-0.
I. Project Updates
The CAMA project was discussed by Jeremy Kringler, IT Business Analyst (BA). The CAMA project is moving ahead quite rapidly with the Assessor team handling a lot of work. Many training sessions are being held to ensure everyone, in & out of the Assessor office, is ready for implementation. The CAMA project is on track.
The Website Redesign project was discussed by Matthew Fomby, IT Director. The redesign team is focusing on designing training for staff, with the timeline for that being discussed as well. The intention remains to have the new website up before the the move to the new building.
TeamDynamix, TDX, was presented by Becki Murphy, IT. TDX will replace the current County helpdesk ticketing system known as TrackIt and the project management tool. The TDX team has been diligently working with the vendor on configuration and testing. Several Department Demonstrations have been scheduled and conducted.
These have allowed for continued testing and fine tuning to occur. The Go Live is still tentatively planned for Mid December 2021, with IT staff excited for the efficiencies and transparency the new tool will bring all County Staff.
Mark Kellogg, IT Manager, went over progress at the New Government Center. Highlights included the HVAC now being online with the completion of fiber connections, this allows work to continue as the weather gets colder. Wireless Access Points will be configured the following week. The Infrastructure Staff has been installing switches to ensure network operability. Jesus Castillo, IT Supervisor, has been meeting with departments to review move plans. Prep work continues to be made for the New Government Center.
The Key Management project was briefly discussed by Kevin Kaszynski, IT Business Analyst. He noted that the due to some card readers this project was pushed back slightly, but still remains an active project.
Event Scheduler was also reviewed by Kaszynski. The hardware is beginning to arrive, with early January as the ETA for the final pieces arriving. The plan is to have all equipment in place by early January as well.
Lee Kelly, County Administrator, updated the Committee on the ERP, Enterprise Resource Planning. There has been communication updates to the trading post. ERP resources are set to begin mid-December as the goal is to move forward on an SOW in Quarter One around February time frame. Staff continue to be active in ERP planning.
ConnieMae Cooper, ECM Architect, updated everyone on the Recorder EDMS project. Currently all historical records from 1968 to the present are available in a digital online format. This provides ease of access and transparency to the citizenship of Wright County. The full project includes All Images, which date back to the mid 1800’s, encompassing over 100,000 records. The project will now move to work on those documents dating from the 1800’s all the way to the 1968 records.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Updates
II. New Project Requests
Rebecca Murphy, IT, brought to the Committee two new projects from Departments across the County. The first project was the Land Records Plotter. It was determined that cost efficiencies could be obtained by placing this device in a centralized location, as many departments have use for it, but not on consistent basis. IT BA, Zachary Breyen, will be working with departments on this item.
The second project brought up was the OnBase Upgrade. This project does not include any outside costs, but the internal staff time will be notable. It will bring the current OnBase platform from EP3 to EP5, improving interfaces, bringing workflow improvements, and general efficiency improvements. This project also includes the Compass.
Pilot upgrade which brings no outside cost but will need staff time to complete. IT Staff are also planning to create a Development Environment where they can test new functions before rolling them out. As more departments utilize OnBase for record management this project was seen as advantageous to begin.
RECOMMENDATION: IT has the capacity for the above-mentioned projects to proceed
III. 2021 Project Portfolio Summary
Rebecca Murphy reviewed the Project Summary focusing on a few items. A big update was The O365 (Office 365) position is now staffed by Fran Petitta Jr. This will allow O365 projects to move forward and implement various modules as part of the O365 Environment. CAMA, ERP, the New GC, and TDx (for IT staff specifically), continue to be large projects, but all are nearing completion.
RECOMMENDATION: Informational Update
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE 11/29/2021, 10 A.M.
Wetter moved to approve the Committee of the Whole meeting minutes from Monday, November 29, 2021. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0.
A. Position Replacement of Assistant County Administrator
County Administrator Lee Kelly stated the replacement of the Assistant County Administrator position was requested at the County Board meeting on Tuesday, November 16 and there was a desire from the commissioners for further discussion. Kelly stated it is a good time for the discussion as there is a strategic planning meeting scheduled for Friday, December 2. Since the position has been open, Kelly has discussed the position with department heads, staff, commissioners, and peers across the state.
Kelly stated the county has had some form of a second in command position for more than 20 years. Kelly stated many things have changed during his time with the county. He added it is a good time to acknowledge the changes and determine how to move forward.
Kelly stated since the position is vacant, many issues come directly to him for resolution that an Assistant County Administrator would be handling. Kelly also stated the position is needed so someone can step in and take over in the event something happened to Kelly.
Kelly stated he views himself as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the county, working under the direction of the board. Kelly has seen struggles working on the big picture items and strategic planning as he is often tied down with smaller level things. Kelly stated discussion needs to be had on what kind of county we want to be and how we want to achieve that. Kelly stated it would be helpful to have an Assistant County Administrator or two Assistant County Administrators to help with these things. Kelly would like the position to assist with day-to-day operations and help with some of the centralization efforts that were started. Additionally, the county holds many committee meetings. Kelly currently attends all meetings and he stated it would be beneficial to have someone else attend some of them in his place.
Kelly stated there are three options: backfill the position, add the second position, or leave the position unfilled. Commissioner Mike Kaczmarek questioned what services have not been provided since the position has been vacant. Kelly stated many things come directly to him and there are times he is unable to respond in a timely manner. It can be difficult to keep projects moving forward. Kaczmarek stated there is a bigger picture than just filling the Assistant Administrator position and more in-depth conversations need to take place.
Commissioner Christine Husom stated Kelly’s workload has increased tremendously. Husom added there is no question in her mind that the position needs to be filled. Commissioner Darek Vetsch stated he wanted to see information relating to department performance and developing productivity standards. Vetsch stated without standards, there are high levels of inefficiency. Vetsch added Kelly can’t find efficiencies because he is constantly “fire-fighting” and just getting the county through the day. Vetsch stated by creating productivity standards and working from the top down, inefficiencies will be uncovered. Kelly added it would be ideal to have time to get ahead of potential issues.
Vetsch stated he would like to post and fill the Assistant Administrator position but would like to hold off on the two Administrative Specialist positions. Kelly added the county is in an interesting time of change and there may be ways to share staff and make things more efficient and effective.
Kaczmarek stated looking at the organizational chart, there is a lot of room to re-allocate duties. Vetsch stated the option of hiring two Assistant Administrators was discussed at a board retreat prior to Kaczmarek and Commissioner Mary Wetter joining the board. Having two Assistant Administrators is a possibility when looking at the 10 to 15-year plan.
Kaczmarek stated there are high-level positions that do not manage or supervise employees that may be able to take on some of the Assistant Administrator duties. Kelly stated positions were added with the intent of taking over the overall county project management. The position would mange Business Analysts and Project Managers. Kelly stated Information Technology (IT) should be a division of Administration as it is a centrally serving department.
Vetsch stated is takes time to learn how to properly delegate duties. Commissioner Mark Daleiden added the county needs to have a chain of command. Right now, there is no one that can step in and take over.
Kaczmarek suggested discussing the organizational chart more in depth at the Board Retreat on Friday, December 3. Kelly stated he doesn’t know that everything will be solved at the Board Retreat. It is important to know what the role of the position is prior to posting the opening.
Wetter questioned if the county conducts exit interviews. Kelly responded yes; some are more beneficial than others but there is value in the process.
RECOMMENDATION: The Commissioners and County Administrator Kelly will further discuss the Assistant County Administrator position as well as the county’s strategic plan at the Board Retreat on Friday, December 3. The two vacant Administrative Specialist positions will be placed on hold.
PERSONNEL COMMITTEE 12/08/2021
Husom moved to approve the Personnel Committee meeting minutes from Wednesday, December 8, 2021. The motion was seconded by Kaczmarek and carried 5-0.
1. Information Technology
A. IT Business Solutions Manager
B. IT Technical Services Manager
Matthew Fomby, Information Technology (IT) Director, shared with committee members that throughout 2021 staff alignments have shifted enough to request to review and update job descriptions for the IT Business Solutions Manager and the IT Technical Services Manager positions. He would like for both job descriptions to accurately reflect the current duties that are being performed. He explained the changes for the IT Technical Services Manager are more of cleaning up the description and wouldn’t change the current grade level. Fomby continued with the added retirement of the current Business Solutions Manager coming up that he would like to also update the job description to better reflect the current responsibilities and have a clear expectation for potential candidates to replace this position.
Human Resources (HR) Director Schawn Johnson commented that Lori Pawelk, Assistant HR Director, and himself will work with Fomby to help clean up both job descriptions’ language to accurately reflect the current duties. He explained that as long as the essential functions of the position are not changing, it would not have to be submitted and considered as a reclassification. Commissioners Darek Vetsch and Mark Daleiden agreed.
Discussion took place on updating the vacant IT Strategy & Portfolio Manager position job description to accurately reflect of what the position is actually performing, along with what is envisioned for the future role. This position would oversee a broader spectrum of projects and processes across county departments pertaining to all types of processes rather than just focusing on technology alone. The description would need to be updated along with the qualifications and the title would change to either the IT Business Solutions Manager or Enterprise Project Management Officer (EPMO). County Administrator Lee Kelly commented that he agrees with the concept of having a more centralized enterprise project office. There is more discussion needed to explore with Fomby as well as, the logistics with HR to figure out how this works with what is currently in place and where it currently lives. He doesn’t want to limit this position’s capabilities only because I.T. is part of the title. Vetsch suggested holding off on the recruitment on this position until the changes in the job description and title have been further reviewed. Both Vetsch and Daleiden agreed. Pawelk confirmed that the recruitment will be placed on hold and then reposted with the updates and that all applicants will need to be contacted and instructed that they will need to reapply, if interested.
RECOMMENDATION: APPROVE UPDATING THE IT TECHNICAL SOLUTIONS MANAGER JOB DESCRIPTION AND PAUSE THE RECRUITMENT OF THE IT STRATEGY PORTFOLIO MANAGER POSITION FOR FURTHER REVIEW AND UPDATES TO THE JOB DESCRIPTION AND TITLE CHANGE.
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE 11/29/2021, 9 A.M.
Husom moved to approve the Committee of the Whole meeting minutes from Monday, November 29, 2021. The motion was seconded by Vetsch and carried 5-0.
A. Discuss 2022 Elected Officials Salary
2. County Attorney
3. County Commissioners
County Administrator Lee Kelly reminded the group Minnesota Statute 387.20 relates to setting Sheriff’s salary, while Minnesota Statute 388.18 relates to setting the Attorney’s salary. Commissioner Kaczmarek suggested starting the salary discussion with the County Commissioners. Commissioner Vetsch recommended, at minimum, the commissioners approve a Cost-Of-Living Adjustment (COLA). Kelly stated the COLA for county staff this year is 2.5 percent. Commissioner Daleiden stated county staff receive a range increase of 3.25 percent in addition to the COLA. Kaczmarek questioned if the per diems could be adjusted. Vetsch responded per diems would be set at the beginning of the year.
County Attorney Brian Lutes stated the commissioners work very hard and the position is not a part-time job. Lutes added the commissioners should not treat themselves any differently than any other county employee and suggested the same salary percentage increase as county employees. Sheriff Sean Deringer echoed Lutes’ comments, adding there are many evening meetings the commissioners attend. Deringer stated the commissioners are responsible for making challenging decisions for the county.
Vetsch stated it is challenging to find candidates to run for office because of the salary. Daleiden stated commissioners receive per diems in addition. Commissioner Husom stated the average commissioner salary at comparable counties is approximately $2,000 higher than Wright County. Vetsch added not all commissioner districts and committee assignments are created equal; certain commissioners can make more than others when looking at total compensation, including per diems. Vetsch questioned if the commissioners should increase salary or per diems. Vetsch stated increasing per diems could lead to a lack of transparency. Husom stated she would like commissioners to receive essentially the same salary. Kelly stated per diems have been $50 for a long time. Kaczmarek stated only two other counties from the list of comparables receive per diems. Kaczmarek stated the per diem rate should be adjusted for some committees due to the length of the meetings.
The commissioners discussed increasing salary between 3 percent to 5 percent. Commissioner Wetter questioned if the budget would allow for 5.75 percent increase for elected officials, the same as county employees. Kelly stated, based on projections, the funds would be there if that is what is decided.
Kaczmarek questioned why salary discussions are not held at the same time as budget discussions. Kelly stated counties usually set wages in the fourth quarter. Wages must be adopted prior to going into the new year. Kaczmarek stated in the past there have been variables that have changed the figures established during the budgeting sessions in September. Kelly responded that the county carries additional funds to cover any needed adjustments.
Deringer stated he did not know what the comparable counties salaries were his first year being elected. Deringer started his first year as Sheriff with a salary of $129,000, while Sheriffs at Carver County, Stearns County, and Scott County all started with a salary of $150,000 or greater. The following year, the commissioners agreed steps needed to be taken to close the gap in pay. Deringer was paid a salary of $148,000 during his second year as Sheriff. Deringer argued comparable counties justify his salary being in the $169,000 to $170,000 range. Wright County has the third largest Sheriff’s Office in the state. Looking only at comparable counties, only two counties (Chisago and McLeod) pay less. Deringer requested a 5.75 percent increase, making his salary $170,786.
Lutes stated he has not reached the top of the pay range for his position. Lutes added he thinks it makes sense to treat the elected positions the same as the rest of the county employees. Lutes stated a 5.75 percent increase would make his salary $171,315.
The commissioners calculated salaries based on percentages ranging from 5.0 percent to 5.75 percent. Kaczmarek stated he likes the idea of the same percentage increase for elected officials and county employees. Kaczmarek suggested a 5.0 percent increase; Husom suggested 5.5 percent; Vetsch suggested 5.25 percent; and Wetter suggested a 5.75 percent increase. Daleiden then suggests 5.4 percent. All parties agreed to a 5.4 percent increase.
RECOMMENDATION: The Sheriff, County Attorney, and County Commissioners will receive a 5.4 percent increase.
RESOLUTIONS SETTING ELECTED OFFICIALS SALARY
Approve Resolution Setting the County Attorney’s Salary For 2022
Vetsch moved to approve the resolution setting the County Attorney’s Salary for 2022 at $170,747.20. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Approve Resolution Setting the County Board’s Salary For 2022
Vetsch moved to approve the resolution setting the County Board’s Salary for 2022 at $53,809.60. The motion was seconded by Wetter and carried 4-1, with Daleiden opposing.
Approve Resolution Setting the Sheriff’s Salary For 2022
Husom moved to approve the resolution setting the Sheriff’s Salary for 2022 at $170,206.40. The motion was seconded by Wetter and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
RESOLUTIONS SETTING THE 2022 BUDGET AND PROPERTY TAX LEVY
Kelly stated the annual Budget and Levy meeting was held at 6 p.m. Thursday, December 9, 2021. There are two resolutions: one to adopt the budget and the other to adopt the property tax levy for 2022.
Kaczmarek moved to approve the adoption of the 2022 budget. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Vetsch moved to approve the adoption of the 2022 property tax levy. The motion was seconded by Kaczmarek and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
ADVISORY COMMITTEE/ADVISORY BOARD UPDATES
Association of Minnesota Counties (AMC) Conference. All commissioners and Kelly attended the conference. Each commissioner attended different educational sessions. Kelly extended congratulations to Mike Williams of Stearns County for earning the Administrator of the Year award.
Safe Schools. Husom attended the Safe Schools meeting. The group discussed the process when a juvenile commits an offense.
Labor Management. Husom attended the Labor Management meeting. Highway Department Maintenance Supervisor Steve Meyer will be retiring on Friday, December 17. Each department provided an end-of-year update.
Highway 55 Corridor Coalition. Husom stated the group celebrated its 20th anniversary. The group is advocating for increased safety and capacity improvements along Highway 55, working alongside the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT), Hennepin County and local municipalities. The group is hoping to receive funds from the upcoming bonding bill from the State Legislature. Husom was elected chair of the group for 2022.
Safe Communities of Wright County. The group is interviewing for the next Executive Director.
Central Minnesota Jobs and Training Services (CMJTS). Husom stated the board met and discussed grant opportunities and challenges. It is difficult to reach youth that ae not in school.
Central Mississippi River Regional Planning Partnership (CMRP). Vetsch stated the group is moving forward with a microgrant initiative. The microgrants will range from $500 - $1,000 and be awarded for regional efforts. Additionally, there is a subcommittee collecting land use plans, looking for transportation corridors.
Trailblazer Transit. Vetsch stated there are currently more than 20 open positions. Many of the applicants do not have the required passenger endorsement. Vetsch stated the meeting frequency may need to be adjusted.
North Fork Crow River One Watershed, One Plan. Wetter attending the meeting to review the 2022 proposed work plan. The group is looking into additional funding sources.
University of Minnesota Extension. The group is hiring a Horticultural Specialist. Wetter is on the hiring committee.
Minnesota Counties Intergovernmental Trust (MCIT). MCIT recently announced new Executive Director, Gerd Clabaugh.
Planning and Zoning. Kelly recognized Barry Rhineberger as the new Planning and Zoning Administrator. Kelly also thanked Tom Salkowski for filling in in the interim.
The meeting adjourned at 10:22 a.m.
County Board Minutes submitted by Elizabeth Clow, Office Manager.
Warrants Approved On 11/29/2021 For Payment 11/29/2021
ASSOCIATED BANK 920,512.50
BOND TRUST SERVICES CORPORATION 5,855,103.13
UMB BANK, N.A. 2,090,267.50
Final Total: 8,865,883.13
Warrants Approved On 11/29/2021 For Payment 11/29/2021
AGC NETWORKS INC 63,126.58
BLACKSTONE CONTRACTORS LLC 425,800.79
CENTRAL MN GUARDIANSHIP & CONSER SERV 2,200.00
FLAHERTY & HOOD P.A. 5,674.45
FLYGARE EXCAVATING 5,575.00
KOLLES SAND & GRAVEL, INC. 5,175.90
MINNESOTA RECOVERY CONNECTION 3,621.46
SCHNEIDER GEOSPATIAL, LLC 5,322.00
THOMSON REUTERS WEST PUBLISHING CORP 2,607.69
38 payments less than 2000 19,847.99 38
Final total 546,873.36
Warrants Approved On 11/29/2021 For Payment 11/29/2021
CARRIERE/NEIL W 2,425.00
DESIGN ELECTRICAL INC-COLD SPRING ELEC. 8,086.73
MEYER CONTRACTING, INC. 23,012.58
MINNESOTA PAVING & MATERIALS 2,675.79
OERTEL ARCHITECTS LTD 18,101.25
OSI ENVIRONMENTAL INC 5,603.00
SUBURBAN TIRE WHOLESALE INC 2,089.08
45 payments less than 2000 12,085.16 45
Final total 83,200.35
Warrants Approved On 12/01/2021 For Payment 12/01/2021
ALBERTVILLE/CITY OF 2,277,246.32
ALBION TOWNSHIP 181,232.22
ANNANDALE/CITY OF 795,798.21
BUFFALO HRA 128,958.17
BUFFALO TOWNSHIP 230,960.80
BUFFALO/CITY OF 4,155,471.46
CHATHAM TOWNSHIP 156,292.93
CLEARWATER RIVER WATERSHED 194,308.45
CLEARWATER TOWNSHIP 215,828.48
CLEARWATER/CITY OF 591,423.41
COKATO TOWNSHIP 169,218.99
COKATO/CITY OF 668,539.53
CORINNA TOWNSHIP 479,752.22
DAYTON/CITY OF 17,634.69
DELANO/CITY OF 2,208,739.32
FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP 525,490.85
FRENCH LAKE TOWNSHIP 135,733.78
HANOVER EDA 17,381.46
HANOVER/CITY OF 695,465.34
HOWARD LAKE/CITY OF 741,753.38
INDIAN LAKE IMPROVEMENT DIST 10,714.79
ISD - 876 ANNANDALE 381,291.25
ISD 111 WATERTOWN-MAYER 91,319.66
ISD 2687 - HOWARD LAKE-WAVERLY-WINSTED 363,713.38
ISD 466 - DASSEL COKATO 219,600.03
ISD 728 - ELK RIVER 795,969.47
ISD 742 - ST. CLOUD 58,158.97
ISD 877 - BUFFALO 1,103,179.02
ISD 879 - DELANO 491,137.04
ISD 881 - MAPLE LAKE 260,865.73
ISD 882 - MONTICELLO 723,295.26
ISD 883 - ROCKFORD 156,148.33
ISD 885 - ST. MICHAEL 929,140.03
LAKE JOHN IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT 12,472.23
MAPLE LAKE IMPROVEMENT DIST 20,221.67
MAPLE LAKE TOWNSHIP 316,639.11
MAPLE LAKE/CITY OF 669,525.18
MARYSVILLE TOWNSHIP 267,046.94
MIDDLEVILLE TOWNSHIP 120,983.73
MN STATE TREASURER-TIF 6,456.20
MONTICELLO EDA 177,420.42
MONTICELLO TOWNSHIP 319,199.76
MONTICELLO/CITY OF 6,447,815.89
MONTROSE/CITY OF 747,962.39
OTSEGO/CITY OF 4,063,738.25
PORT AUTHORITY 199,309.94
ROCKFORD TOWNSHIP 502,999.35
ROCKFORD/CITY OF 798,046.81
SILVER CREEK TOWNSHIP 457,653.92
SOUTH HAVEN/CITY OF 58,537.37
SOUTHSIDE TOWNSHIP 228,399.26
ST MICHAEL EDA 70,820.06
ST MICHAEL/CITY OF 4,054,895.98
STOCKHOLM TOWNSHIP 133,549.64
VICTOR TOWNSHIP 203,055.06
WAVERLY/CITY OF 588,922.99
WOODLAND TOWNSHIP 191,073.51
2 payments less than 2000 1,037.83
Final total 40,829,546.46
Warrants Approved On 11/30/2021 For Payment 11/30/2021
JK LANDSCAPE CONSTRUCTION 57,049.10
3 payments less than 2000 2,077.85 3
Final total 59,126.95
Warrants Approved On 12/01/2021 For Payment 12/01/2021
ABM BUILDING VALUE 7,983.75
ABOVE THE REST FLOORS AND MORE LLC
ADVANCE TERRAZZO & TILE CO INC 209,798.00
BOBS SW CONSTRUCTION SERVICES 2,000.00
BOSER CONSTRUCTION INC 101,188.52
BOSER CONSTRUCTION INC 19,514.63
BRETH ZENZEN FIRE PROTECTION LLC 48,564.48
BUILDING MATERIAL SUPPLY INC 8,536.70
CHOSEN VALLEY TESTING INC 4,908.00
CONTEGRITY GROUP 49,289.98
DESIGN ELECTRICAL INC-COLD SPRING ELEC. 159,197.71
E G RUD & SONS INC 3,698.50
EBERT CONSTRUCTION 444,918.11
EBERT CONSTRUCTION 3,453.45
FORD METRO INC 83,278.90
GEORGE F COOK CONSTRUCTION CO 96,122.90
HIGH PERFORMANCE COATINGS INC 15,339.09
INSTITUTE FOR ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT 2,872.00
JK LANDSCAPE CONSTRUCTION 155,889.30
MASTERS PLUMBING HEATING & COOLING
NORTHLAND CONCRETE & MASONRY CO LLC 52,121.75
RIVER CITY UNDERLAYMENT 5,573.00
ROOF 1 RBR INC 27,551.12
RTL CONSTRUCTION 70,323.75
VEIT DISPOSAL SYSTEMS 6,205.00
WEIDNER PLUMBING AND HEATING CO 123,590.59
6 payments less than 2000 4,076.39
Final totoal 1,901,405.00
Warrants Approved On 12/01/2021 For Payment 12/01/2021
GREEN VIEW INC 2,401.62
IMHOLTE EXCAVAITON AND TRUCKING LLC 16,080.00
KNIFE RIVER CORPORATION - NORTH CENTRAL
MANAGER, RYAN LLC 4,786.00
PETERSON COMPANIES INC 108,517.54
PLEASANT LAKE IMPROVEMENT ASSN 2,500.00
30 payments less than 2000 15,205.50
Final total 165,111.76
Warrants Approved On 12/02/2021 For Payment 12/02/2021
ARAMARK SERVICES INC 7,653.02
AUROMIRA ARCHITECTS LLC 15,575.00
BUFFALO/CITY OF 2,415.79
FRONTIER PRECISION INC 5,337.59
HARRISON MARKER CO 6,190.00
MCKESSON MEDICAL-SURGICAL 2,848.86
PLAGGERMAN/MARGARET M 3,420.09
PROJECT PATHFINDER INC 4,815.00
SALKOWSKI/THOMAS M. 6,075.00
TW VENDING INC 11,431.59
35 payments less than 2000 17,597.30
Final total 83,359.24
Warrants Approved For Payment 12/02/2021
MN DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE 669,845.21
Final total 669,845.21
Warrants Approved On 12/03/2021 For Payment 12/03/2021
4IMPRINT, INC 8,857.49
AVTEX SOLUTIONS LLC 14,418.69
BUFFALO/CITY OF 120,129.00
CANON FINANCIAL SERVICES, INC 2,689.21
COMPASS MINERALS AMERICA INC 53,876.50
DESIGN ELECTRICAL INC-COLD SPRING ELEC. 9,968.00
DUININCK INC 539,096.64
ENVIROTECH SERVICES INC 6,007.68
FARM-RITE EQUIPMENT INC 2,583.25
FLYGARE EXCAVATING 9,869.00
KLATT / SETH 7,695.00
KNIFE RIVER 2,772.00
OMANN CONTRACTING COMPANIES INC 4,437.50
POWER OF PARTNERSHIP LLC 4,125.00
RDO EQUIPMENT CO 2,130.00
ROYAL TIRE INC 3,393.64
SUBURBAN TIRE WHOLESALE INC 4,145.96
WSB & ASSOCIATES INC 71,378.73
51 payments less than 2000 13,874.71
Final total 884,168.00
Warrants Approved On 12/03/2021 For Payment 12/03/2021
AFSCME LOCAL 2685 4,168.32
AIG RETIREMENT COMPANY 7 ,297.92
FIDELITY SECURITY LIFE/EYEMED VISION CAR 2,376.35
HEALTH PARTNERS 46,781.65
HEALTH PARTNERS - DENTAL 12,725.07
MG TRUST COMPANY 3 ,550.00
MN CHILD SUPPORT PAYMENT CENTER 2,500.00
MN PUBLIC EMPLOYEES ASSOCIATION 2,184.00
NATIONWIDE RETIREMENT SOLUTIONS 4,568.36
PUBLIC EMP RETIREMENT ASSN 404,268.22
WRIGHT CO CAFETERIA PLAN 31,090.53
WRIGHT COUNTY - CAFETERIA 80,025.00
WRIGHT COUNTY DEPUTIES ASSOCIATION
6 payments less than 2000 2,460.44
Final total 624,418.86
Warrants Approved For Payment 12/06/2021
INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE (IRS) 486,906.08
MN DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE 97,366.75
Final total 584,272.83
Warrants Approved On 12/07/2021 For Payment 12/07/2021
AEM WORKFORCE SOLUTIONS LLC 2,900.00
ALTERNATIVE BUSINESS FURNITURE INC 2,706.62
APEX SOFTWARE 7,500.00
CENTERPOINT ENERGY 13,900.89
D & M ENTERPRISES 15,729.00
FLYGARE EXCAVATING 2 0,756.05
KENNEDY & GRAVEN CHARTERED 3,360.00
28 payments less than 2000 15,387.62
Final total 89,520.18