var sid = 454; var aid = 3;
Wright County Board Minutes
WRIGHT COUNTY BOARD MINUTES
APRIL 9, 2002
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Mattson, Eichelberg, Sawatzke, Jude, and Russek present.
Mattson made the following correction to the minutes of 3-26-02: Page 1, 8th paragraph, 7th sentence, should read, "In response to Mattson pointing out a fluctuation in the program in the last year of over $1 million, it was explained that the report figures reflect funding required to run programs." Jude moved to approve the minutes as corrected, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0.
Petitions were accepted to the Consent Agenda as follows: Item B2, "Approve Tobacco License, Ditto's Bar Inc. (new owner) St. Michael" (Gruber); Item E2, "Refer To Technology Committee: 1) Invoice From Brenda Schald & Associates; 2) Contention For Satellite Equipment" (Norman). Item D1, "Authorize Jack Russek & Wayne Fingalson To Attend MTA Washington Fly-In, June 11-13, 2002" was moved to the 9:45 A.M. Highway Engineer's Agenda Items. Petitions were accepted to the Agenda under Items for Consideration as follows: #5, "TH 55 Corridor Coalition" (Jude); #6, "MnDOT & Landfill" (Mattson). Mattson moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Jude, carried unanimously.
On a motion by Mattson, second by Eichelberg, all voted to approve the Consent Agenda as amended:
1. Performance Appraisals: B. Aanerud, K. Green, Aud./Treas.; B. Holmquist, B. Jans, B. Leinonen, L. Oestreich, D. Redden, Hwy.; M. Janckila, MIS; T. Andersen, D. Clemence, J. Cooper, D. Ford, J. Hermansen, K. Kremer, J. Thinesen, Sher./Corr.
2. Set County Auction For 5-4-02 @ 10:00 A.M., Public Works.
3. Hay Job Description Evaluation Results/Recommendations.
4. Approve Voluntary Leave Without Pay Program, 6-3-02 to 9-27-02.
5. O/T Report, Period Ending 3-29-02.
6. Notice Of Leadership Team Retreat On 5-2-02.
1. Approve Tobacco License For Harley's Pub & Grill (new owner), Rockford Twp.
C. COURT SERVICES
1. Approve Hire, Angie Comee, Case Aide, Eff. 3-18-02 (Step 1).
2. Authorize Signatures On Contract With Caritas Family Services For Custody Study Services With Wright County.
3. Accept Resignation, Nicole Crum, Case Aide, Effective The Date Of Hire Of Her Replacement.
2. Authorize Sale Of Used Chip Spreader & Used Roller, Wayne Pike Auction Company (Princeton MN).
1. Refer To Technology Committee Meeting: 1) Fees For Data; 2) Local Digital Phone Service.
F. PLANNING & ZONING
1. Accept The Findings & Recommendations Of The Planning Commission For The Following Rezonings:
A. Approve Request To Rezone 67 Acres From AG To R-2a, J. Phillips Construction (Rockford Township).
1. Acknowledge Appointment, Thomas Halberg, Deputy Sheriff, Eff. 4-22-02 (Grade 5).
2. Acknowledge Appointment, Thaddeus Helmers, Deputy Sheriff, Eff. 4-22-02 (Grade 5).
Sheriff Gary Miller presented Gary Holm with a retirement plaque. Holm was employed from 1977 to 2002 and served as Patrol Officer, Narcotics Task Force Agent, Firearms Instructor and Detective. Holm was thanked for his dedicated years of service.
Barb Chaffee, Central MN Jobs & Training Executive Director, brought back a request for an extension of the Joint Powers Agreement. At their last meeting, the County Board requested that Chaffee research questions on contract effective dates for youth services. Today, Chaffee stated that the Joint Powers Board has the full authority and made the motion to accept the language in the agreement on 3-8-02. As part of that motion, Chaffee was directed to meet with each County Board for approval on that language. Chaffee requested approval of the Agreement with the stipulation that the prior version remain effective through 3-30-02 with regard to youth services. The 2004-2006 agreement will include language changes as requested with regard to effective dates. Jude moved to adopt Resolution #02-23, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Doug Gruber, Auditor/Treasurer, presented the February Revenue/Expenditure Report for approval. Mattson moved to acknowledge the report, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.
Gruber provided an overview of redistricting procedures. The County Board is required to approve their plan no later than 5-28-02. They cannot officially approve a plan until response is received from Wright County cities and townships on whether they will be changing precinct boundaries. Cities and townships must notify the County by 5-1-02. Currently, there are two cities with more than one precinct (Buffalo and St. Michael). Gruber suggested the Board approve their plan at the 5-21-02 County Board meeting. It is required that the notice of intent to change the district boundaries be published three times prior to approving the plan. Gruber requested the Board schedule a meeting with himself, the Coordinator, and representatives of the County Attorney's Office to lay out the guidelines and discuss a plan. Mattson moved to establish a Committee Of The Whole meeting on 5-6-02 at 1:30 P.M., seconded by Jude, carried 5-0.
The claims listing was reviewed. Russek noted a claim on page 13, North Medical Transportation ($1,335). He had not discussed the claim with Capt. Torfin prior to today's meeting to see if any of the bill will be recovered by the inmate's personal insurance. On a motion by Mattson, second by Eichelberg, all voted to approve the claims as listed in the abstract, subject to audit.
A Building Committee meeting was held on 3-26-02. The minutes were corrected to remove Brian Asleson from those who attended the meeting. Jude moved to approve the minutes as corrected, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0. A summary of the minutes follows:
Quotes, Camera Recording System. Hayes presented a summary of quotes received from Ancom, KNR and Russell's Lock & Key. The system would be used for a historical record in the case of an incidence, as a crime deterrent, and for future use for real time monitoring. The use of a monitor in the License Bureau was discussed. The consensus was that if a camera system were purchased, it should have the capability to be added to as future needs arise. To network the three buildings would require renting another pair of fiber optics cable from the City. The consensus of the Committee was that each system could stand on its own as there will be no central monitor at this time. Hayes recommended the quote from Russell's Lock & Key ($47,937) as it was not only the lowest but the vendor also provided the best presentation on the overall system. This bid was also the only one that was below $50,000. Discussion followed on the Keri Card Key System. The proposal adds ten additional doors at a cost of $32,747. With this system, employees will receive card keys to allow entrance through specific doors. The card key will be used as a badge ID as well. Public access will be restricted to Lobby and East Annex doors. The consensus of the Committee was to wait on proceeding with the Camera Recording System until the Legislature adjourns to analyze what budget cuts will be made. This issue will be referred to the April 24th Committee meeting. Norman requested that Hayes obtain a layout of the door and camera systems. Hayes and Swing are to discuss the specifics of the system including monitoring before that meeting. Norman felt the Board needs to make a policy determination on the placement of cameras (i.e., entry areas).
Other Security Related Costs. Climate Air reviewed the air intakes at the Government Center. Hayes said the air intake on the west end of the building should be raised for security reasons and because it is close to the ground. Estimates will be provided.
Improvements To Sheriff's Impound Area, PWB. This issue was referred to a future meeting as a layout of the area and cost estimates were not available.
Location Of Sink, Third Floor, Annex Building. Quotes were obtained previously to place a sink on the Third Floor. The two quotes received were for placement of the sink at opposite ends of the building. The less expensive bid was approved by the Board providing for a stand-alone sink with no cabinets or counter at the east end of the current lunchroom area. Mleziva requested that the more expensive option be reviewed again. This option would place the sink in an existing counter top at an additional cost of $2000. When the Board reviewed the options previously, only 66% of the cost would have been reimbursed through Child Support funding. Mleziva said there is a funding source through the Food Stamp Enhancement Fund which would cover the entire cost. The original grant was for $37,000 and must be used for improvements and equipment. Norman suggested that Mleziva utilize these funds to purchase equipment budgeted for in the 2002 budget, as they will probably realize cuts after the Legislative process. Norman said the County needs to have a plan for remodeling. Each time requests such as this are approved, the realization of an employee lounge becomes less of a consideration. Recommendation: Approve the request for the sink to be placed into the existing counter top with funding from the Food Stamp Enhancement Fund. The work is to be completed after hours, if possible.
Jay Wittstock, Surveyor, provided an overview of the 2001 County Surveyor Department Activity Report. Programs being impacted by growth include plat checking, parcel mapping, County Highway ROW mapping, public land survey system maintenance and coordinates, and general survey information. The County ranks toward the top in growth and size, both statewide and nationally. During the first quarter of 2002, the number of plats compared to last year has doubled. Wittstock is working on cross training within the department in an effort to provide assistance with plat checking and parcel mapping. They will attempt to switch entirely to the CAD mapping system to streamline efforts. Assistance was provided in 2001 on the CSAH 18, CSAH 14, and CSAH 12 Highway projects. Another goal is to update the public land survey system and HARN (high accuracy reference network) coordinates, and making more information available on the internet. Mattson moved to accept the report, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0.
Marc Mattice, Parks Administrator, was previously directed to obtain input from the Leadership Team on a public random survey. The idea originated through the Parks Commission. Today, Mattice explained that most departments do not wish to participate in the survey. The Highway Department would be interested in including general comments about service. Mattice felt the survey would be a great management tool to address the public's viewpoint of recreation, service, development, infrastructure, acquisitions, bonding measures, etc. The information would be a guide for developing the 10-Year Strategic Plan. In response to a question by Sawatzke, Mattice indicated that he is aware that schools conduct surveys as a class project. He felt this may be a larger project than what they would desire. Jude moved to refer this issue to the Ways & Means Committee for further discussion, seconded by Sawatzke. Mattice plans to invite to the meeting a person with experience in coordinating surveys. The motion carried 5-0.
Mike MacMillan, Court Services Director, introduced Nathan Miller, Court Services Restorative Justice Agent and Chair of the Wright County Family Services Collaborative. The request is for use of office space in Court Services for the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Program serving Wright County. The desk, phone line and computer will be placed at the expense of the Collaborative. Phone line expense will be covered by Court Services. The Collaborative will use the space for one year. Sawatzke said they should be informed that this will not be a long term solution.
Miller stated that the Collaborative has established a full-time position for Wright County. Eichelberg noted that the Economic Development Partnership is also looking for space and that other departments may have similar situations with outside entities. MacMillan replied that the Program is intricately related to their department as they will work with staff and youth. Sawatzke moved to support the request for the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Program to utilize one office in Court Services until 4-1-03, seconded by Jude. Eichelberg was not against the program but said he would vote against the motion. He felt the issue should have been addressed by the Building Committee. Sawatzke said the Collaborative will have key access to their individual office space only. They are to utilize the space during regular business hours and should not gain key access to the building or Court Services office. The motion carried 4-1 with Eichelberg casting the nay vote.
Wayne Fingalson, Highway Engineer, introduced Bob McKee, Organizational Representative of the Twin Cities Area Labor-Management Council, Inc. McKee presented to the Public Works Labor Management Committee the 6th Annual Earl Willford Labor Management Cooperation and Management Award. Committee members include Co-Chairs Brian Jans and Rick Bonk, Jeff Putnam, Tom Waldron, Kurt Eich, Bob Erickson, Conrad Webb, Wayne Luetgers, Dick Norman, Wayne Fingalson, Virgil Hawkins, Steve Meyer, Kent Korman (IUOE Local 49), Jack Russek, and Barb Holmquist (Secretary). McKee said the award was received due in part to the trust and open communications between labor and management. The Committee was formed in 1993 (shortly after a strike) due to the desire of labor and management to improve working relationships. The result is an organization which benefits each other and the community they serve. The Committee was congratulated on receiving this award.
At the request of Fingalson, Sawatzke moved to schedule a Transportation Committee Of The Whole for 4-23-02 at 1:00 P.M. The motion was seconded by Eichelberg and carried 5-0. The Agenda will include: 1) Presentation from City of Albertville regarding transportation issues; 2) Presentation from City of St. Michael regarding their traffic study; 3) Discuss resolutions requested from Mn/DOT for TH 10/TH 24 IRC Study and I-94 IRC Study; 4) Discuss development of written snow/ice control policy; 5) Discuss options for road tour/5-year public meeting; 6) Regional Trail Planning.
Mattson addressed the request to authorize Jack Russek & Wayne Fingalson to attend the MTA Washington Fly-In, June 11-13, 2002. Last year the goal was to obtain funding on a bill but it was found that funding was not available. Mattson recently visited with Mark Kennedy and they concurred that a meeting to discuss TH 55 transportation funding should be scheduled with James Oberstar. Oberstar will be in the area on 4-29-02. Mattson referenced financial support for lobbyists who he felt should be able to represent the County in Washington. Fingalson responded that they do rely on the Transportation Alliance. The Alliance has indicated that part of the process is to be present with the coalition to request funding for the TH 55 project. Fingalson said they are competing for limited funding. The reason the funding opportunity was missed last year was that they missed the deadline to have their request included in the bill. The most recent request will not require any matching funds. Jude said it was very important to be present to request the $1-$5 million in funding. In the past he has been critical on out-of-state travel, but felt this was an exception due to its importance. Mattson said Kennedy writes the bills which are brought forth and Oberstar must approve them. Jude moved to authorize Russek and Fingalson to attend the MTA Washington Fly-In on June 11-13, 2002, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0.
At 10:14 A.M., Russek recessed the meeting and opened the Gravel Tax Public Hearing. Brian Asleson, Chief Deputy Attorney, said imposing a tax is allowed by State Law. Requirements are for the County to hold a public hearing and take action prior to implementing the tax. Surrounding counties not only collect tax on gravel that is mined in their counties but collect on Wright County's as well as long as Wright County does not impose the tax. Asleson said information was mailed out outlining answers to frequently asked questions. A summary of this information follows:
What materials are included? Sand, silica sand, gravel, building stone, crushed rock, limestone, granite, etc.
How many counties currently have legal authority to collect the production tax? Currently 21 counties are collecting a production tax (Stearns, Benton, Sherburne, Carver, Scott, Dakota, LeSueur, Kittson, Marshall, Pennington, Red Lake, Polk, Norman, Mahnomen, Clay, Becker, Wilkin, Big Stone, Sibley, Hennepin, Washington and Ramsey).
How much is the tax? A county shall impose on every importer and operator a production tax equal to ten cents per cubic yard or seven cents per ton of aggregate material removed except that the county board may decide not to impose this tax if it determines that in the previous year operators removed less than 20,000 tons or 14,000 cubic yards of material from the county. The tax shall be imposed on an importer when the aggregate material is imported into the county that imposes the tax.
What is the procedure for collection of the tax? By the 14th day following the last day of each calendar quarter, every operator or importer shall make and file with the County Auditor a correct report under oath. The report shall be accompanied by the amount of tax due.
What if the report is not filed by the 14th day of the month? The County Auditor shall estimate the amount of tax due and notify the operator or importer by registered mail of the amount of tax estimated.
Is there a penalty for not filing a report? Yes, failure to file the report and submit payment shall result in a penalty of $5 for each of the first 30 days. The penalty increases to $10 per day after 30 days. If neither the report nor a statement of objection has been filed after more than 60 days have elapsed from the date when the notice was sent, the operator or importer who is required to file the report is guilty of a misdemeanor. It is also a misdemeanor for the operator or importer to file a false report.
Who gets the revenue collected from the tax?
60%-is credited to the County Road & Bridge Fund.
30%-to the road and bridge fund of those towns as determined by the County Board and to the general fund or other designated fund of those cities as determined by the County Board.
10%-is credited to a Special Reserve fund which is established for expenditure for the restoration of abandoned pits located upon public and tax forfeited lands within the county.
Mattson was not convinced that a tax was needed. He thought the amount to make it worthwhile should be determined. Jude replied that the County would not hire a person, that it would require 1-2 hours of Auditor's Office staff time per quarter. Jude said there is a pit on Meridian Avenue that has been permitted for 8.4 million cubic yards of gravel. If the County does not impose the tax, another county will collect tax on amounts imported. The reason the County decided to pursue a tax was for exported gravel. However, the State does not allow imposing only on exporting. He said it was a natural resource that was not replaceable and being exported.
Gruber clarified that in the past year, Meeker County has voted to implement the tax and Carver County may implement the tax. The only surrounding County that has not implemented the tax is McLeod. If Wright County does not proceed with the tax, other counties will be charging $.10/yard for gravel imported into their counties. He felt many haulers would be paying the tax anyway. These counties also charge for gravel exported from their counties.
Fred Bonk has been in the gravel business for 31 years and it is his only income. He did not support the tax. Bonk said small haulers work with private individuals and do not have government contracts. Bonk said other small haulers have indicated that they will not pay the tax. Bonk will pay the tax but will not pass the cost along to his customers. He said the County, State, Townships and Cities are the largest users of gravel and referenced projects such as overlaying of 15 miles of roadway, bridge replacements, and the City of Montrose sewer system. Bonk served on the Gravel Tax Task Force. He said when government is involved, it generally ends up costing more. In small business, there are not many large jobs. He referenced a clause in the State contract allowing elimination of the tax for the small contractor. Bonk then asked what income Wright County takes in every year. The response was $25 million through the levy. He asked how much was held in undesignated funds. The response was approximately 25% of the annual levy or approximately $4 million. This is done at the recommendation of the State Auditor's Office for cash flow purposes as taxes are only collected twice a year. Bonk supports the gas tax which would be paid for by all users. He felt the gravel tax would be another burden. He referenced the Government buildings, Jail and vehicles stating they are in very nice condition. In addition the County roads are second to none. This has all been accomplished without the gravel tax. He asked that government thank the small business owners. Business relies on government services but government also relies on business. He felt the Board should vote with their hearts and not their pocket books. Bonk again stated that he felt many haulers would not be honest with reporting of the tax owed.
Jude clarified that the expenditures made by the County were justified and that the road system should not go backwards. Jude felt the gravel resource should be protected through a user fee. He felt they should do what is best for everyone. Asleson clarified a statement made by Bonk on small haulers. Statute indicates the County Board doesn't have to impose the tax if it determines the operators removed less than 20,000 tons or 14,000 cu. yds. from the County in the previous year. He did not interpret that the small operator has an exemption. If the County imposes a tax, it would be for everyone. Sawatzke inquired whether clarification could be sought on the statute. Asleson said if it were poorly written, the County could be challenged. He could check with the Department of Revenue if the Board so directed. Sawatzke felt an answer should be sought to make sure it is interpreted consistently.
Franklin Denn, Monticello Township, said it appears a large area of Monticello Township will be mined for gravel. He said the Monticello Township Board supports the tax if the money is used for roads and reclamation. He felt reclamation was very important for future use of the land. When asked about an implementation date, Denn replied that whenever the tax is implemented it will affect someone. The majority of contracts are let by mid summer. Sawatzke clarified that with regard to reclamation, the money captured from the tax and spent on reclamation is only toward public property. Private gravel pits must obtain permits through Planning & Zoning and these permits require the pit owner to have a reclamation plan.
Phyllis Latour, Southside Township, said the Township Board is in favor of implementing the tax. The Township is a large contributor to the natural resources of the County and they would recapture a portion of the tax.
Don Holthaus, Monticello Township, said more land in Monticello Township is lost due to new housing than for gravel. He said gravel pits are already taxed at a higher rate than ag land.
Fred Bonk added that the valuation doubled this year on pits, increasing the taxes 25-55%. He said haulers cannot double their prices like that. He said many pits are turned into County parks and are useable in the future. Bonk referenced a 5-acre pit sold in Marysville Township which sold for $72,000. He questioned what would happen next year if taxes doubled this year.
Relative to the gas tax, Fingalson said that the last increase was in 1988. Funding is needed for projects included in the 5-Year Plan, as they are operating at a $3 million deficit in State Aid funding. Any funding obtained through a gravel tax would be more than what they are realizing now.
Norman read two written comments into the record. The first was from Ardelle and Martin McAlpine who are opposed to the tax. They wrote that it was costly for people to build homes and this would increase costs. The second was from Wayne Kessler, St. Michael City Mayor, who wrote in support of the tax to increase the road & bridge construction funding.
The meeting recessed at 10:58 A.M. and reconvened at 11:05 A.M. Mattson stated that in regard to the comment by Bonk on the pit sold in Marysville Township for $72,000, the Township can recapture lost revenue when land is resold for housing developments. Jude referenced an area in Maple Grove where gravel was mined. The land is now being utilized for industrial and commercial development. The Public Hearing closed at 11:07 A.M. and the regular Board meeting was reconvened.
Sawatzke moved to support the County creating a gravel tax of $.10/yard or $.07/ton. The motion includes support if 30% goes to the Township of origin. The effective date will be between 9-1-02 and 1-1-03. The motion recognizes that the Board has the ability to change or review this in the future. The motion was seconded by Jude. Jude understood the motion to include directing staff to prepare documents and possibly adopt them in two weeks. Due to time constraints on the Auditor's Office during elections in September, Gruber favored a 1-1-03 implementation date. He would notify contractors and pit owners by mail. Sawatzke and Jude amended their motion to include the 1-1-03 implementation date. Mattson said he could not support the tax and felt the County could continue to operate as it has been in the past. It was the consensus that Asleson develop a resolution outlining the specifics of the tax for approval. Relative to effective dates, Jude felt that Fingalson should be involved with review of future contracts and how it will affect them. How the effective date impacts hauler contracts and exemptions will need to be addressed. Mattson said the County has expended over $500,000 for gravel and now the taxpayers will be taxed again. Russek responded that they would not be taxed if the gravel is used for roads. The motion carried 4-1 with Mattson casting the nay vote.
Asleson presented a resolution raising the tobacco licensing fee to $150/year effective 1-1-03. The current rate is $75/year. If a new business opens during 2002, they would pay the $75 rate. The increase would not be effective until licenses are renewed for 2003. Renewal notices are sent in November and many licenses are issued before year end. The license fee of $150 would be effective prior to the year end if applying for next year's license. The State mandates that counties perform compliance checks. The increase in fees is to cover costs associated with the compliance checks. Eichelberg moved to adopt Resolution #02-24, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Chuck Davis, Environmental Health Supervisor, presented the 4-4-02 Solid Waste Task Force (SWTF) minutes for review. A correction was made to the minutes removing the 1st sentence of paragraph 2, page 3. The SWTF met to review a proposal made by Scott Vandenheuvel, Veit Companies, to lease a portion of the Compost Facility. Option One includes 2000 cubic yards of yard waste free to Wright County residents. Veit would lease a portion of the compost hangar for windrowing compost. Veit proposes to lease the entire curing pad for $1,000 per month with an annual review. Veit will track and report each month the amount received from residents excluding commercial haulers. More than 2000 cubic yards of yard waste from County residents would result in a $5.00 per cubic yard charge to the County. Option Two offers free drop off from County residents of all their yard waste, estimated to be valued at $10,000 annually. Veit would pay Wright County $100.00 per month, with an additional cost of $.50 per yard for yard waste and other acceptable material delivered to the Facility from all sources other than Wright County residents. Option Two allows for an automatic increase in revenue as the operation grows. Veit would report to the Board at their first meeting each month of the yardage received from out of County sources. Veit would lease the hanger and cure pad area for one year with an annual renewal for an additional year. Either party has the right to terminate the agreement with a six month notice with either of the options. At the SWTF meeting, a motion was made for the County to enter into the RFP process but continue to work with Veit for the short term if the answers to questions regarding taxes, insurance, bonds, and project cost of wear and tear to the Facility are still favorable. An RFP should be developed for the long term use of the Facility. The motion passed with Sawatzke casting a nay vote.
At today's meeting, Asleson distributed a memorandum he drafted outlining concerns. A summary of these concerns included:
Public Activity Bonds. According to Springstead, Inc. and Briggs & Morgan, there is a 5% private use limitation. If the use is under that threshold, the recommendation from those entities is that the County should not have to worry about the tax exempt nature of the bonds. A fair market value analysis should be completed for the Facility.
Property Tax Status. The Assessor's Office has indicated that government owned property leased for private use is taxed as personal property use (based as if the lessee owns the property). An option would be to split out a portion of the property. The Assessor's recommendation is for their office to review the current valuation and determine what would be assessed for that portion of the Facility.
Department of Finance Requirements. The Department of Finance must review and sign off on any lease or sale of property.
Requirement For Competitive Bidding. State law provides that a county must advertise for bids or proposals when selling or leasing public property. An exception would be when the lease does not exceed $15,000 annually. Option Two of the proposal presents a possibility that the lease would exceed that limitation based upon projected amounts of waste to be receipted at the Facility. The conclusion from the Attorney's Office is that several questions remained unanswered in connection with use of the Facility by a private entity. The recommendation was for the County Board not to enter into any lease agreements until those issues can be addressed.
Sawatzke referenced the 4-10-02 deadline presented by Veit for a determination by the County Board. With this time line and the unanswered questions, he did not feel the County could enter into an agreement and should pursue the RFP process. Jude offered entering into an agreement with Veit contingent upon obtaining additional clarification. This would provide Veit with an indication that the County is willing to proceed.
Scott Vandenheuvel, Veit Environmental Manager, said they would like an idea of whether the Board will proceed. He said he could extend some of his timelines as long as moving forward was contingent upon obtaining answers in approximately a week. He suggested that if Option One were elected, this would fall under the $15,000 threshold. If the Department of Finance requirements were answered in a timely manner, he did not see this as an issue. He felt the property tax issue could be addressed within a week.
Russek was not aware that the Attorney's Office would present a recommendation not to move forward with an agreement. He had concern with approving the agreement with contingencies. Sawatzke referenced the $18,500 potential the County could receive through Option Two. He felt the recommended shift to Option One for $12,000 per year in order to circumvent the $15,000 threshold would be less financially advantageous. He felt this could become an issue if someone challenges the County on this decision.
Vandenheuvel responded that the initial proposal was for $1000/month. Option Two was added with regard to answering volume questions. He did not understand the SWTF consensus to be to proceed with Option Two. In addition, for the short time line they are working under, Vandenheuvel felt they would meet 50% of the 35,000 goal for cubic yards of material.
Mattson was uncomfortable with the offer previously. With the recommendation of the Attorney's Office, he did not feel the County should proceed with a lease agreement until all issues were addressed. It was clarified that Sawatzke voted against the SWTF recommendation as he felt the County should be looking at the long term needs of the Facility rather than short term. He felt the SWTF's recommendation was based upon all of the questions being addressed before today's meeting.
Vandenheuvel said he was not asking today for the County to enter into the lease agreement with Veit. They were looking for a commitment to move ahead with the proposal contingent upon receiving satisfactory answers to their concerns. Sawatzke felt it would make more sense to obtain answers before making decisions. Russek said there were too many unknowns. He appreciated Veit's proposal and conveyed a sense of willingness to cooperate. Russek said they rely upon the Attorney's Office for direction. Jude said he had the ultimate respect for the Attorney's Office but did not want this situation used as a way to drag the process along. Information from the State could potentially take months. He felt research could be completed in a timely manner to expedite the process. Asleson said they may be able to obtain information relative to the property tax within one week but questioned whether they would obtain approval from the Department of Finance in that time frame. Asleson referenced Attorney and Planning & Zoning staff being uncomfortable with the process since the onset of the Microtech Research proposal. Sawatzke said that the SWTF minutes reflect that NRG would also like to present a proposal. He was uncomfortable with negotiating a deal with Veit when another proposal could be made by a person with as much or more expertise in the industry. With private business, a decision could be made today. With government, he felt there should be a level of fairness allowing an opportunity by all to participate. He felt the RFP process should be pursued. Russek said that is the goal.
Mattson moved to not enter into the lease agreement at this time, seconded by Sawatzke. Russek said he was uncomfortable with voting in favor of the SWTF recommendation due to the County Attorney's position. However, the SWTF did not have the position of the Attorney's Office to factor into their recommendation. Sawatzke referenced the SWTF recommendation which indicated their support if the answers to questions regarding taxes, insurance, bonds and projected cost of wear and tear to the facility were still favorable. He did not feel they had heard anything favorable in this regard. Russek said he would not vote in favor of the motion as he feels the County owed it to Veit to see what answers could be obtained in a week's time. In response to Sawatzke, Jude stated that if NRG wanted to make a proposal they could do so at a SWTF meeting. Russek said NRG would bid through the RFP process anyway. Norman indicated that a lease agreement must be in place at some point. Sawatzke inquired whether the County had the legal ability to only negotiate with this company, for example in an instance where a company offered $16,000. Asleson said if it is over the $15,000 threshold amount, the County must advertise. The motion failed 2-3 with Eichelberg, Russek and Jude casting the nay votes. Jude moved to lay this issue over for one week and to direct County departments to obtain as many answers as possible in that time frame, seconded by Eichelberg. Sawatzke did not support asking staff to react as quickly as possible to accommodate Veit's proposal and referenced Veit changing their time lines. Russek stated that if anyone else came in with a proposal, these same questions would need to be answered. The motion carried 3-2 with Sawatzke and Mattson casting nay votes.
Vandenheuvel referenced a potential opening on the SWTF and offered to fill the position. He expressed interest in being a part of the development of the RFP process. Russek stated that he would be supportive of appointing Vandenheuvel as the position in his district will need replacement. Jude felt Vandenheuvel would make an excellent representative on this Committee.
Jude moved to acknowledge the SWTF minutes noting the change to page 3, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.
At their meeting, the SWTF moved to establish a committee of two commissioners on the Task Force along with John Simola, Dick Naaktgeboren and Chuck Davis. The purpose would be to develop an RFP. Sawatzke moved to support this, seconded by Jude, carried 4-0 (Mattson was absent). The motion includes for the first meeting to be held within four weeks.
At their meeting, the SWTF moved to allow the grant of 50% for recycling bins to cities and townships for a period encompassing six months prior to 4/4/02 and continuing six months forward from 4/4/02. Jude moved to support this motion, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 4-0 (Mattson was absent).
A Committee Of The Whole meeting was held on 3-25-02. Sawatzke moved to acknowledge the accuracy of the minutes, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0. A summary of the minutes follows:
Proposal To Lease Compost Facility. Scott Vandenheuvel, Veit Company, made a presentation on use of the Compost Facility to operate and manage a yard waste composting operation under the Current Permit by Rule. It was the consensus that the proposal from Veit would need to be resubmitted to the County outlining the new rental amount, what area of the facility would be utilized, and fees for service. The proposal Committee Of The Whole Minutes (cont.): will also include posting a bond sufficient to cover cleanup of the Facility. Board action from 3-19-02 requires the SWTF to meet within ten days of today's meeting to discuss the revised proposal from Veit.
Discuss RFP Process. It was the consensus that the RFP process could be addressed in the future. At present, the County needs to find out the status of the permits and how renting the Facility to Veit would affect the OEA grant or bonding. Asleson will contact Springstead Financial Advisors to seek clarification.
A Personnel Committee meeting was held on 3-25-02. On a motion by Sawatzke, second by Eichelberg, all voted to approve the minutes as presented:
Performance Appraisal - Don Mleziva, Human Services Director. Based on review of five appraisals submitted, the Committee recommends an overall rating of "Superior."
Performance Appraisal - Kathy Gramsey, Administrative Clerk. Gramsey was unavailable for her review. This item will be laid over until the next Personnel Committee meeting.
On a motion by Sawatzke, second by Eichelberg, all voted to appoint Eichelberg as the alternate Commissioner on the Central MN Regional EMS Board.
Jude moved to lay over the resolution relating to the Interregional Corridor Plan until after the Transportation Committee Of The Whole meeting, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.
On a motion by Sawatzke, second by Eichelberg, all voted to authorize attendance at the Transportation Forum, "How Should Transportation Change After September 11?" This forum is being held on 4-29-02 at 1:00 P.M. in Minneapolis.
Jude attended and testified at the TH 55 Corridor Coalition hearing on 4-8-02. The hearing was on the funding of the transportation bill. Jude stressed the importance of being present to testify at these hearings. Questions will be researched and the issue will be referred back to the Transportation Committee, but it appears favorable that it will pass.
Mattson voiced concern with the recent articles on lead paint and asbestos being delivered to the Superior Landfill. He said he spoke with Senator Mark Ourada on this issue. Mattson questioned whether the Attorney's Office has become involved. Jude said he also discussed the issue with Ourada who had researched and found that all of the proper permits had been acquired and all materials were under the proper levels. Asleson referenced a 4-8-02 letter from Superior Landfill outlining the MPCA's indication that the lead paint was more of a contractual problem than an environmental problem. The contractor did not handle this as hazardous waste. However, the lead paint residue in the landfill does not exceed MPCA limits. Sawatzke referenced a newspaper article reflecting 117 tons of paint containing 63 tons of lead. Although he was not sure of requirements, Sawatzke questioned the potential poisoning by 63 tons of lead due to the MPCA's opinion that liners will leak. Another issue relating to the landfill is a letter the MPCA sent out referencing illegal auto fluff. This material must be disposed in a certain manner. Sawatzke's point was that even if Superior does monitor what material is placed in the landfill, there are still all types of material that are not environmentally sound or acceptable that are accepted into the landfill.
Russek stated that Patrick Riley, Microtech Research Inc., has withdrawn the offer to the County for utilization of the Compost Facility.
Albertville Body Shop, Inc. 3379.13
American Bio Medica Corporatio 354.00
American Business Forms 1067.03
Ancom Technical Center 1677.67
Andersen, Earl, Inc. 10,664.50
Arrow Terminal, LLC 438.51
Assn of Minnesota Counties 970.00 Auto Glass Center, Inc. 852.28
B&D Plumbing & Heating 374.35
Bob Barker Co. 228.28
Bauman, Laurence 461.88
Best, Inc. 12,482.38
Bonk, Rick 100.00
Buffalo Communications, Inc. 265.00
Buffalo Hospital-OTPT Commerci 388.40
Buffalo Wine & Spirits 107.62
Buffalo City 21,065.18
Catco Parts Service 1493.88
Cellular 2000 of St. Cloud 479.94
Central Lock & Safe 296.00
Chamberlain Oil Co. 298.02
Cintas Corp No 748 182.52
Climate Air 4218.64
Columbia Propane 640.43
Comprendium Professional Devlo 165.00
Concept Seating, Inc. 435.00
CPS Technology Solutions 1496.80
Determan, Karen 133.62
Diversified Product Developmen 433.17
DuPont Flooring Systems 341.63
Emergency Concepts 5000.00 Emery's Tree Service, Inc. 798.75
Engineered Pressure Wash Equip 384.59
Enterprise Dispatch 265.50
EPA Audio Visual, Inc. 663.57
Erickson, Josh 199.24
Ernst, Debbie 177.48
Feddema, Tom 139.40
First State Tire Recycling 561.90
Gau, Todd 187.68
GCI Systems 253.47
Glunz, Raymond 100.00
Government Training Service 199.00
W Grainger, Inc. 265.18
Hardings Towing 122.15
Hawkins, Virgil 795.06
Herald Journal Publishing, Inc. 3635.92
Hillyard Floor Care Supply 2189.78
Indelco Plastics Corp. 467.19
Info Logic 850.00
Interstate Battery Sys of Mpls 605.51
Intoximeters, Inc. 666.50
Jacobs, Jeffrey 2250.00
James, Robert Co., Inc. 214.81
Jopp, Lou 151.94
Kirscht, Bernard 401.00
Lakedale Telephone Company 189.34
LaPlant Demo, Inc. 760.04
Lawson Products, Inc. 1113.06
M-R Sign Company, Inc. 2949.75
Magsig, Michael 150.00
Maple Lake Messenger 143.21
Marco Business Products 5297.82
Marks Standard Parts 2014.37
Mattson, Richard 134.68
Minnesota State Bar Ass'n 191.99
MN Alcohol Traffic Safety Ass'n 660.00
MN Counties Computer Co-op 378.33
Moeller, Dennis 190.96
Monticello Ford Mercury, Inc. 1161.46
Monticello Sportsmen Club 1917.00
MTI Distributing, Inc. 244.64
Nextel Communications 1025.91
Norman, Richard 296.77
North American Salt Co. 18,178.50
North Medical Transportation 1335.00
Nybeck, Timothy Sr. 107.20
Office Depot 3073.07
Olson, Denise 119.00
Philip Osborne Ph. D 100.00
Pats 66 155.08
Press & News Publication 266.00
Quality Inn-Fargo 113.88
Record Preservation, Inc. 1297.25
Reliant Energy Minnegasco 8949.14
Ricmar Industries 269.75
Royal Tire, Inc. 3084.53
RS Eden 788.55
Schmidt, Donald 431.96
Software House international, In 501.62
St. Cloud Stamp & Sign 237.65
Sterling Solutions, Inc. 600.00
Tires Plus 107.98
Total Printing 121.14
Uniforms Unlimited 1067.10
United Rentals 279.30
Verizon Wireless 1617.67
Voss Lighting 432.59
Wal-Mart Store 01-1577 243.59
Waste Management TC West 687.91
Wessman Oil Co. 134.78
Wright County Auditor-Treas. 4216.60
Wright County Highway Dept. 1471.13
Wright County Journal Press 325.14
Wright Cty Court Administrator 970.00
wRight Lumber & Millwork, Inc. 259.38
Xcel Energy 149.12
Ziegler, Inc. 168.74
Zylstra, David 481.60
49 payments less than $100 2642.32
Final Total $163,473.04
The meeting adjourned at 12:23 P.M.
Howard Lake-Waverly Herald & Winsted-Lester Prairie