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Wright County Board Minutes

JANUARY 7, 2003

Doug Gruber, County Auditor/Treasurer, called the meeting to order and asked for an election of the Chairperson for the coming year. On a motion by Mattson, second by Russek, all voted to elect Eichelberg as Chairperson for 2003; and then Commissioner Eichelberg presided at the meeting.

On a motion by Russek, seconded by Mattson, all voted to elect Sawatzke as Vice Chairperson for 2003.

On a motion by Russek, second by Sawatzke, all voted to dispense with the reading of the minutes of 12-31-02 and approve them as written/revised. Under B.2, line 6, Mattson corrected the spelling to read "Elletson Bowl & Recreation Center Inc."

On a motion by Russek, second by Mattson, all voted to transfer back any unused funds in the County Attorney's Contingency Fund, the Sheriff's Contingency Fund, and the Incidental Fund to the Revenue Fund.

On a motion by Sawatzke, second by Russek, all voted to recall all unused clerk hire and unused budgets for 2002.

On a motion by Sawatzke, second by Russek, all voted to set the County Board's special sessions for every Tuesday for 2003. The meetings shall be called to order at 9:00 A.M.

Karla Heeter was welcomed as new County Commissioner for District 1 by the County Board.

The Chairperson presented the 2002 list of committee memberships and asked the members of the County Board to convey their preferences and suggestions regarding committee designations for 2003. The first member named acts as Chairperson of the committee and the County Coordinator acts as Secretary. Alternates are designated on the committee by ( ).

The following is a list of 2002 committees and the 2003 appointments:


Area Transportation Planning (ATP); Mattson

Budget; Russek, Mattson, Aud./Treas. (Ex-Officio), Norman, (Sawatzke)

Budget Committee Of The Whole; All Commissioners

Building, Furniture & Equipment; Heeter, Mattson (Eichelberg)

Capital Improvement/Finance Committee; Heeter, Russek, Aud./Treas., Attorney, Norman (Eichelberg)

Central MN Jobs & Training Jt.; -----Powers Board (JTPA) Workforce Center

Civil Defense; Heeter, Sawatzke

Committee to Inspect Roads; All Commissioners

Committee to Inspect Ditches; Two Commissioners as appointed by Board, Aud./Treas., Compost Finance, Russek, Sawatzke, C. Davis

County Extension Svc.; Russek, Mattson

Court Security; Mattson, Norman

Deferred Compensation; Heeter, Sawatzke

Delegates to AMC; All Commissioners, Aud./Treas., Coordinator, Hwy. Engineer

Detention Facilities; Mattson, Heeter, Judge Douglas, Sheriff, Court Services Director, Norman

Drug Task Force; Mattson

Forfeited Tax Sales; Russek, Mattson

Great River Regional Library Board; Eichelberg

Highway 55 Coalition; Heeter, Russek (Fingalson)

Labor/Mgmt. Health Insurance Committee; Russek, Eichelberg, Norman (Mattson)

Labor Management/Loss Control; Mattson, Eichelberg, Coordinator,Civil Def. Dir., Spec. Proj. Admin.,1 Rep. from Teamsters/LELS, AFSCME, 49'ers and Teamsters

Law Library Board; Eichelberg

Legislative Matters; All Commissioners

Monticello Orderly Annexation Board; (Removed - no longer in existence)

Personnel & Employee Relations; Eichelberg, Sawatzke (Heeter)

Planning & Zoning; Russek

Public Works Labor/Management; Russek, Norman (Mattson)

Purchasing Steering Committee; Eichelberg, Mattson, Purchasing Agent (Heeter)

River Rider Joint Powers Board; Sawatzke, Mattson, City Council Representative (Heeter)

Solid Waste Task Force; Russek, Sawatzke

Technology; Eichelberg, Heeter, IT Director, Aud./Treas.; Highway Engineer, Human Services Rep., Sheriff Rep. (Russek)

Transportation; Eichelberg, Mattson, Fingalson

7W Transportation; Mattson

Union Negotiations; Russek, Sawatzke (Eichelberg)

Water Management Task Force; Eichelberg

Ways & Mean; Mattson, Sawatzke (Russek)

Wright County Community Action; Heeter, Eichelberg, City Representative


East Central Joint Powers Board; Sawatzke, MacMillan

Central MN Council on Aging Board; Heeter

Clearwater Watershed District; Heeter

C.R.O.W.; Russek (Mattson)

Economic Development Partnership Board; Eichelberg

Historical Society; Sawatzke

Parks; Eichelberg

Soil Conservation; Russek

Wright County Ag Society; Heeter

On a motion by Sawatzke, second by Russek, all voted to accept the Committee appointments as recommended with the exception of the Central MN Jobs & Training Jt. Powers Board (JTPA) Workforce Center and a City Council Representative to the River Rider Joint Powers Board which will be made at a future date.

On a motion by Russek, second by Mattson, all voted to accept the Advisory Board (Ex-Officio Member) appointments as recommended.

Petitions were accepted to the Agenda. Under Consent Agenda, the following items were added: Item D.2., "Speed Zone and Rumble Strips on CSAH 37, from CSAH 8 to East City Limits" (Mattson); Item D.3., "Discussion of Shared Salt & Sand Shed Between Cities & County (Mattson); Item B.4., "Signature For Confirmation Of 2002 Audit (Gruber). Sawatzke moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.

Saatzke requested removal of Item A.3., "Claim, Economic Development Partnership, 2003 Allocation, $42,000" of the Consent Agenda for discussion. On a motion by Sawatzke, seconded by Heeter, all voted to approve the remainder of the Consent Agenda. Russek stepped out of the meeting for a few minutes.


1. Performance Appraisals: P. Melvin, L. Pawelk, Admin.; M. Olson, Ct. Admin.; J. Niebolte, Hwy.; R. Fisher, D. Short, Sher.

2. Claim, Buetow & Associates, $6,210.68.

4. Claim, AMC, $19,184.

5. Claim, MCIT, $399,739 (2003 Property/Casualty Premium).

6. Claim, MCIT, $241,288 (2003 Workers' Comp. Premium).

7. O/T Report, Period Ending 12-20-02.


1. Claim - Utility Systems of America, $79,954.28 - Application Payment #11 (Fund 61 - Sewer).

2. Claim - McCombs Frank Roos, $9,486.02 - November Services (Fund 61 - Sewer).

3. Tobacco License Renewals: Coborn's; Smackdown's Sports Bar & Grill Inc.; Albertville Mobil LLC (Albertville City); Coborn's; Coborn's Liquor; Clearwater Marathon (Clearwater City); Coborn's; Snyder's Drug Store #5002; American Legion Club Post #377 (Delano City); Tom Thumb #586 (Hanover City); Tom Thumb #583 (Monticello City); Corner Bar; American Legion Post #567 (St. Michael City).

4. Signature For Confirmation of 2002 Audit (Gruber).


1. Approve Hire, Benjamin Ehlinger, Case Aide, Eff. 1-6-03, Step 1.


1. Add To The 1-10-03 Transportation Committee Of The Whole Meeting Agenda, "Discuss Bridge Funding Agreement With City Of St. Michael."

2. Speed Zone Request and Rumble Strips On CSAH 37, From CSAH 8 To East City Limits (Mattson).

3. Discussion Of Shared Salt & Sand Shed Between Cities and County (Mattson).


1. Authorize Signature On Contract With DLR Group For Possible Retrofit Project In The Jail.

2. Schedule A Meeting For The Detention Facility Committee.

3. Acknowledge Appointment, Kimberly Fletcher, Half-Time Juvenile Holdover Attendant, Eff. 1-21-03, Step 4.

Item A.3, "Claim, Economic Development Partnership, 2003 Allocation, $42,000" was discussed. Sawatzke stated with the seriousness of the State budget deficit it is unknown what the financial impact will be on local governments, filling of some positions are being delayed until July, department heads will likely be asked to make future cuts in their budgets, and, therefore, feels it would be best to take a cautious approach and allocate only part of the $42,000 and to re-evaluate the balance of their request in July. Sawatzke moved to approve $20,000 with the balance to be re-evaluated in July. There was no second and the motion failed. Sawatzke moved to lay the item over until the end of the meeting for Russek to be present, seconded by Heeter. Mattson stated he wanted a hiring freeze a year ago which did not happen, that the allocation to the Ag Society (Fair Board) increased significantly, and felt economic development is very important to the County and supports allocating the full $42,000 at this time. Eichelberg stated he serves on the Economic Development Committee, that they operate within a very tight budget and favors allocating the full $42,000. Motion carried 4-0 to hold this item over to the end of the meeting.

Doug Gruber, Auditor/Treasurer, reported the Wright County Capital Improvement Plan submitted under MS 373.40 has been approved. Mattson moved to schedule a Building Committee Of The Whole Meeting on January 14, 2003 at 10:30 A.M. to discuss specifics of the bonding amount, seconded by Heeter. Motion carried 5-0.

Gruber presented the claims listing for review. Gruber referenced a late addition to the claims listing under the Auditor/Treasurer in the amount of $175.00 for line item 6338. Russek moved to approve the claims as listed in the abstract subject to audit, seconded by Mattson. On page 2, Mattson questioned the coding of a claim payment for Jude which was listed under the Assessor. Gruber will review and correct the coding error. Motion carried 5-0.

Tom Salkowski, Planning & Zoning Administrator, stated the following members' terms expired at the end of 2002 and need to be re-appointed or replaced: Dave Zylstra (1st District) and Don Schmidt (4th District) on the Board of Adjustment; and Roger Millner (1st District) and Ralph Douglas (At Large) on the Planning Commission. Members serve three year terms and it has been tradition and Commissioner courtesy that the members are appointed by district. Heeter, District 1 Commissioner, recommended the appointments of Bill Lieb to the Board of Adjustment, and Dave Pederson to the Planning Commission. Mattson moved to appoint Bill Lieb and Don Schmidt to the Board of Adjustment, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0. Russek moved to appoint Dave Pederson and Ralph Douglas to the Planning Commission, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0. On behalf of the Board, Salkowski requested the minutes reflect sincere gratitude and appreciation to Dave Zylstra for serving 12 years on the Board of Adjustment and Roger Millner serving nine years on the Planning Commission. He stated these are difficult, demanding and often emotional jobs, and they have served the citizens of Wright County well.

Marc Mattice, Parks Administrator, requested signatures on the 2003 Green View Contract for Caretakers at Beebe Lake, Otsego, Clearwater/Pleasant and Fairhaven Mill, and Ney Park in the amount of $67,297 as per the 2003 Budget. Sawatzke asked whether signing the contract required utilization of all the hours, or if hours could be reduced depending on the overall budget condition. Mattice stated hours could be reduced but would impact on services and length of time parks would be open. On a motion by Sawatzke, second by Russek, all voted to authorize signatures on the 2003 Green View Contract.

Mattice requested approval to expend dollars out of Fund 29.029.5559 for improvements at Collinwood and Schroeder Parks. He stated that three years ago fees were raised from $12 to $14/night and $2 from the fees went into a fund for improvements at these two parks. The money would be used to improve the camping loop and entrance road at Collingwood Park and the road from the office into the park and lake loop at Schroeder Park. Mattice stated the work would be done as an overlay bid with the Highway Department and estimated expending most of the $35,000. There was discussion on allowing Mattice to proceed with the overlay as an alternate bid allowing the Board to approve the expenditure when final costs are known. Sawatzke moved to approve the proposed improvements as an alternate bid, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.

Mattice requested approval to submit an application for a CSAH 12 Trail Easement Grant which was held over from the 10-29-02 meeting for more information. He stated he has received input from Montrose, Buffalo, and Marysville Township supporting the trail but they did not commit any funds. There were questions on what costs would be for the trail with members of the County Board stating they would like to see detailed cost information. Mattice stated the County's matching share would be 50%, with estimated right-of-way costs of $34,000 and construction costs of approximately $10,000 - $15,000/mile for five miles. Mattice noted the application deadline is in February and at this time is only requesting approval to submit a grant application. Matson moved to authorize approval to submit the CSAH 12 Trail Easement Grant application, seconded by Heeter, carried 5-0.

Mattice requested appointments be made for the Parks Commission in District 1 and District 2 for terms ending 12-31-05. These are three year terms appointed by the Commissioner in each district. Heeter recommended the appointment of John Weiscarver replacing Diane Bruns, Distruct 1 who submitted her resignation effective 12-31-02. Sawatzke moved to appoint John Weiscarver in District 1 and to re-appoint Carl Swenson in District 2, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

Consent Agenda Item A.3, "Claim, Economic Development Partnership, 2003 Allocation, $42,000" was brought forth for further discussion. Sawatzke repeated his earlier statements and moved to allocate $20,000 at this time and to hold the balance for review in July. Eichelberg stated he would give Mattson opportunity to speak before taking a motion. Sawatzke withdrew his motion. Mattson re-stated his position on wanting a hiring freeze, that the Fair Board's budget substantially increased, and that while percentages were cut back the budgeted overall dollars increased, and feels the County needs to keep moving ahead with economic development. Eichelberg stated he supports Mattson in allocating the full $42,000 at this time as this is a growing area and we need to do everything possible to get businesses which increase the tax base. Russek stated he can see both sides of the issue and is not against economic development but with the uncertainty of the budget we need to treat everyone alike, and if possible will approve more or all of the balance later. Sawatzke stated Economic Development is not totally dependent upon the County's allocation and has other sources of revenue from businesses, seminars, etc. Sawatzke moved to allocate $20,000 to Economic Development Partnership at this time with the balance to be re-evaluated in July, seconded by Russek. Mattson stated he could not support the motion. Carried 3-2 with Mattson and Eichelberg voting against the motion.

Russek moved to lay over the Resolution, Central MN EMS Joint Powers Board Representatives for further information as Jude served on this Board, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.

Pat Melvin, Special Projects Administrator, presented the OSHA Report, Citation & Penalty (Public Works) report for review and discussion. He stated one violation was for a platform at the French Lake Shop with did not have a load bearing weight posted and no railing although there are no employees at this site, and a second violation regarding fire extinguisher inspection. He noted total penalties total $2,100.00 with an expedited cost of $1,470 if not contested. Norman stated that with the number of employees and buildings the findings are minimal in comparison to previous inspections and fines imposed at other counties. Russek moved to accept the OSHA Report and pay the expedited penalties of $1,470, seconded by Heeter, carried 5-0.

Norman presented a Resolution of Support for the Minnesota County Restructure Act of 2003 which AMC has requested in support of a bill they have introduced dealing with funding of County programs/projects and mandates. The three key provisions state: 1) Counties may provide those services that contribute to the health, safety, welfare and economic well being of the county. Counties may provide services unless directly prohibited by the state. 2) All mandates, maintenance of efforts, rules requiring the delivery of services and reporting requirements excluding those rules and mandates that originate or access federal monies are repealed. And, 3) Counties shall have immunity stemming from all lawsuits for failure to provide non-mandated services. Sawatzke questioned whether this means that all criteria and standards are removed and what the affect would be. Norman stated this was discussed at the AMC Conference and is intended to remove all mandates except those the legislature specifically includes. Following discussion it was suggested the item be layed over for two weeks for Heeter to obtain additional information at the new commissioner school she will be attending next week. On a motion by Heeter, second by Russek, all voted to lay the resolution over for two weeks.

Bills Approved

Ancom Technical Center 207.80

Annandale Tactical Training Ce 600.00

Bristow's Kawasaki & Polaris 3740.31

Buff'N'Glo, Inc. 183.95

Buffalo Collision Repair, Inc. 2552.50

Bull HN Information Systems 239.63

First State Tire Recycling 9719.86

Fyles Excavating & Honey Wagon


Gateway Companies, Inc. 1630.53

Hillyard Floor Care Supply 1044.26

Jerry's Towing & Repair 101.18

JP Fence 12,000.00

Loberg Electric 621.32

Maco 175.00

Marco Business Products 2637.44

McCombs Frank Roos Associates


Midland Corporate Benefits Svc 1456.00

MN Counties Computer Co-op 13,170.80

MN Counties Ins. Trust 3748.00

MN Sheriff's Association 194.21

Morris Excavating, Inc. 8235.00

Office Depot 618.62

Olson & Sons Electric 5911.96

Peavey, Lynn Company 944.50

Performance Office Papers 526.64

PMI Computer Supplies 342.01

Precision Prints of Wright Co. 159.75

Press & News Publications 693.01

Primedia Workplace Learning 410.00

Record Preservation, Inc. 587.94

Sirchie 129.11

Streichers 173.49

Total Printing 413.43

Unique Photo 918.40

Upper Midwest Community Polici 500.00

Utility systems of America 79,954.28

Voss Lighting 132.91

Walker's Body & Glass Repair 1303.00

15 payments less than $100 919.82

Final Total $183,132.68

The meeting was adjourned at 10:45 A.M.

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