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Wright County Board Minutes

APRIL 15, 2003

The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Heeter, Mattson, Eichelberg, Russek and Sawatzke present.

The following corrections were made to the 4-08-03 minutes: Page 6, 1st paragraph, should read, "....4.77 miles in length, seconded by Mattson." (Russek). Page 2, 4th paragraph, 5th sentence should read, "Sawatzke noted some counties...". Russek moved to approve the minutes as corrected, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.

Petitions were accepted to the Agenda as follows: Item For Consid. # 10, "Schedule Committee Of The Whole RE: Nuclear Program Report" (Norman); Consent Agenda #A.4, "Authorize Notice To Proceed To Nelson Construction" (Norman); Item #B.2, "Tobacco License: Tom's Tobacco & Grocery (Delano)" (Gruber); Under Auditor/Treasurer #1. Lay over for one week, "Approve Purchase Of Postage Metering Machine Out Of Budget 820-6605, Site Improvements" (Gruber), #2, correct spelling of "Deer Path" (Gruber); add #3, "H & H Sport Shop Tobacco Compliance Update" (Gruber). Mattson moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

Russek moved to approve the Consent Agenda with the amendments, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.


1. Performance Appraisals: S. Backes, Admin.; N. Ellis, B. Holmquist, Hwy.; J. Bodin, L. Hellerud, J. Mackereth, D. Munsterteiger, Sher.; T. Andersen, Sher./Corr.

2. Authorize Voluntary Leave Without Pay Program.

3. Claim, Frank Madden, $1,441.60.

4. Authorize Notice To Proceed To Nelson Construction. (Norman).


1. Tobacco License: Food & Fuel (St. Michael City).

2. Tobacco License: Tom's Tobacco & Grocery (Delano). (Gruber)


1. Set Letting Date For CSAH 14 Improvements (SAP 86-614-08), Contract No. 0307.


1. Authorize Signatures On Federal Boat & Water Supplemental Grant Agreement.

On a motion by Russek, second by Mattson, all voted to approve a plat, "DEER PATH," as submitted by Ralph & Jane Goelz, husband and wife, fee owners of the following property described in part as: Part of the SW1/4 of the NE1/4 with three exceptions as described on the mylar; and also part of the East 285.58 feet of Gov. Lot 2, Section 31, Township 121, Range 26; with all outstanding taxes, including green acre liability, if any, having been paid; the park land has been dedicated with no fee required; there are no new roads involved in the first phase; and the title opinion prepared by D. A. Schroeppel has been reviewed by Thomas C. Zins, Assistant County Attorney, who finds the plat to be ready for recording. Russek noted right of way dedication for the path system to Ney Park is part of the plat.

Brian Asleson, Chief Deputy Attorney, reported a decision was received last week on the H & H Sport Shop tobacco appeal upholding the $250 fine and 7 day suspension. This was provided as an information item.

The claims listing was reviewed. Gruber clarified the account code for an annual licensing fee varied among departments depending on where the department budgeted the item. Mattson moved to approve the claims listing subject to audit, seconded by Sawtzke, carried 5-0.

Barb Chafee, Central Minnesota Jobs & Training Services, presented their Annual Report and financial audit for review. The Workforce Service Area serves 11 counties in Central Minnesota. During 2002 3,593 adults and 1,067 youth were served. As a result of the economic downturn there was an increase in dislocated worker projects and a rise in unemployment. Chafee gave a brief overview of the various programs they administer, funding cuts, and those programs and services which will be sunsetting this year. Mattson expressed concern with the delay of a mapping project for culverts which was to be completed by December. Chafee stated she was not familiar with this specific project and would contact the individual heading the Flood Project grant for additional information.

The meeting was recessed at 9:30 for a public hearing on Ditch #38 lien apportionment in response to a petition filed on behalf of Cecilia Florek. Approximately seven years ago 77.5 acres were sold and she retained the house on 2.5 acres. Of the 77.5 acres, 1.75 acres is estimated as benefitting by the ditch amounting to approximately 4.7% of the total ditch assessment. The request from Floreks is to reapportion the 1.7 acres from the 2.5 acres to the current owners of the 77.5 acres, Mehdi Rafian-Naini and Susan Hely Rafian-Naini of Dayton, MN. Mrs. Florek's 2.5 acres is not located on the ditch. It appears to have been a number of years since any work has been done to the ditch and did not become an issue until recent cleanout of the ditch resulted in an assessment showing up on Mrs. Florek's property tax statement. Mr. Rafian-Naini stated he was not the original buyer and purchased the property about three years ago. At the time he purchased the property there was no mention of the ditch lien. There was discussion on ditch liens and property owners not being aware until they receive an assessment and if there is a better procedure which could be used. There was agreement that logically the 1.75 acres should be reapportioned to the 77.5 acre parcel, acknowledging Mr. Rafian-Naini's situation in that it was not a part of his property transaction with the previous owner. Mrs. Florek's son-in-law felt there should be a better way for this to be handled and stated that when you go through an attorney and title company you expect these things to be discovered. Asleson stated that often ditch liens do not appear on abstracts because of many ditches being dug back in the early 1900's and changes in recording requirements over the years. Mr. Rafian-Naini questioned what happened that the ditch did not require maintenance until now. Russek explained that it's a continual natural process of growth and sediment until water no longer flows properly and cleanout is needed. The public hearing was closed at 9:55 A.M. and the Board Meeting reconvened. Russek moved to reapportion the 1.75 benefitted acres from the 2.5 parcel to the 77.5 acre parcel and for Asleson to prepare the order for next week's Board Meeting, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.

Mary Anderson, Extension , reported on a regional planning workshop hosted by Central Minnesota Jobs & Training in February. Business, Economic Development, Workforce Development, and Education were the target audience. She reviewed portions of the Central Minnesota Population, Demographic, and Economic Profile noting statistics for Wright County. According to the profile study Wright and Sherburne Counties have the highest median household income, and Wright County has the largest percentage of discretionary income. Statistics show there are more employed residents in the County than there are jobs available with over 15,000 workers being employed outside of the County. Median wage and monthly rental costs were mentioned. Anderson will share the profile information with Noel LaBine, Wright County Economic Development Partnership Director.

A Building Committee meeting was held on 4-09-03. Due to miscommunication there was not a quorum for the meeting and the agenda item was laid over for the next scheduled Committee date. Sawatzke moved to approve the minutes, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

A Negotiation Committee meeting was held on 4-03-03. Russek moved to approve the minutes, seconded by Heeter, carried 5-0.

Reorganization Plan, Court Administration. The Committee reviewed the approved reorganization plan with the Union representatives. All agreed that the new position of Court Clerk should be on Class D of the Salary Schedule. The effective date of the change shall be the first day of the first pay period following approval by the County Board: April 28, 2003. Job classifications Case Intake Deputy and Case Management Deputy will be dropped from the Salary Schedule effective April 28, 2003.

A Personnel Committee meeting was held on 4-09-03. Due to miscommunication there was not a quorum for the meeting and the agenda item was laid over for the next scheduled Committee date. Mattson moved to approve the minutes, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.

A Ways & Means meeting was held on 4-09-03. A summary of the minutes follows.

Discussion RE: Historical Markers, Park System. Mattice provided a brief overview of the historical marker located on Hwy 12 in Middleville Township noting that Mr. Larsen, Lower Sioux Community, had visited the monument and expressed concern over its context. A copy of the transcription on the 1963 plaque was distributed for review and discussion. Short stated the MN Historical Society was involved when the plaque was put up in 1963 but does have jurisdiction over this issue. Larsen stated people know very little about American Indians and felt that transcription on the plaque continues to be hurtful and keeps old stereotypes alive. He gave a number of examples showing unfamiliarity with their culture, spirituality and history. He does not wish the existing plaque be removed, but would like another plaque of similar size added which would address the perspective of he Lower Sioux Community. Middleville Township representatives stated they would not be opposed to another plaque as long as the existing one was not removed or altered. Funding for he plaque was discussed and will be pursued by Larsen and Short. Larson will work with the Historical Society on the wording of the plaque and Mattice in regard to possible placement. Size of the site was discussed and the possibility of enlarging it will also be pursued. Recommendation: Schedule another meeting when proposed wording is ready to be reviewed, and funding as well as possible site placement has been addressed.

Solid Waste Task Force Members/By-Laws. Davis distributed revised copies of the Solid Waste Task Force By-Laws and reviewed revisions made at the 02-12-03 Committee meeting. Current Task Force Members have been contacted and all are interested in continuing to serve. The Task Force Membership was reviewed for category representation and length of term. It was determined an opening exists in the Township Representative category with an appointee from District 1, 3 or 5. John Sundman could be appointed as District 4 representative. There was discussion regarding LaPlant or Vandenheuvel serving as the Solid Waste Industry Representative. There was also discussion on residency and conflict of interest issues. Recommendation: Present the By-Laws and the proposed membership designation at the 4-15-03 County Board Meeting for approval.

Following reading of the minutes Sawatzke commented that the discussion regarding the historical marker was a very positive meeting. Sawatzke explained the process the Committee used in identifying which category members of the Solid Waste Task Force represented according to Article IV, Section 1, as well as the length of term. Eichelberg expressed opposition to a non-resident of Wright County serving on the Solid Waste Task Force stating that it was not consistent with by-laws of other advisory boards and task forces which require members to be citizens of Wright County. In response to a request from Eichelberg for a legal opinion, Asleson stated he was not aware of any statute requirement and felt it was a policy decision of the Board. Mattson felt the individual was a good addition to the Task Force and did not see his moving out of the County as reason to not continue to serve. Eichelberg stated with the population of the County it should be possible to find Wright County citizens to serve on the Task Force and felt the Mayors' Association should be requested to submit a recommendation. Sawatzke felt that when there is an opening in the City Government category that the Mayors' Association should be contacted, but that at this time the individual is interested in continuing to serve and has done a very good job on the Task Force. He stated the Committee discussed city and township representation and felt it should be defined to mean an elected official, or city or township employee rather than a resident. Because no one currently on the Task Force met the township government criteria, it was felt that the Township Officers should be contacted to recommend an individual for appointment in that category. Eichelberg requested definition of neighborhood and expressed concern that citizens paying the compost assessment in other parts of the County are not being represented and that it could be possible for the majority of people on the Task Force making decisions to live within a couple miles of the facility. Sawatzke disagreed stating that theoretically it could be possible for everyone on the Task Force to have a background in the solid waste industry also. It was noted that Article IV, Section 2, C. of the By-Laws did not agree with the revision as written in the meeting minutes. It was felt this was a clerical oversight when the final revisions were being made and will be corrected to read, "Three (3) members will be appointed for one year." There was discussion regarding whether Dave LaPlant or Scott Vandenheuvel serve as the Solid Waste Industry representative. Russek stated he has served on the Task Force with LaPlant and felt he should be allowed to continue to serve in that capacity as Vandenheuvel was a more recent appointment, and to contact Vandenheuvel if a future opening occurs. Russek also stated that Simola has served well on the Task Force and did not see any reason to remove him at this time although he is no longer a resident of the County. Heeter moved to approve the Solid Waste Task Force By-Laws with the changes submitted, for John Simola to serve as the City Government representative, Dave LaPlant to serve as the Solid Waste Industry representative, and John Sundman be appointed as District 4 representative, seconded by Russek. Eichelberg stated he felt it was a mistake to deviate from consistency and would vote against the motion. Eichelberg raised a question on length of term. Heeter stated the intent of her motion was to approve the Task Force membership with the terms and categories as identified by the Committee. The motion carried 4-1 with Eichelberg voting against the motion. There was discussion on the opening in the Township Government category. It was noted that appointment would need to be from District 1, 3 or 5 according to the By-Laws criteria. Russek will request the Township Officers place the issue on their agenda. Sawatzke moved to approve the Ways & Means minutes as read, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.

Norman distributed an agenda for the 4-29-03 Quad Counties Meeting in St Cloud requesting he be notified by 4-25-03 if a Commissioner does not plan to attend. He noted the first item on the agenda is jail space issues at the request of Wright County. Eichelberg mentioned attendance was authorized at a previous Board meeting.

Russek moved to schedule a Budget Committee Of The Whole meeting for 4-28-03 at 10:30 A.M., seconded by Heeter, carried 5-0.

The appointment of John Sundman to SWTF, District 4 Representative was approved as a part of Heeter's motion at the conclusion of the Ways & Means Minutes regarding Solid Waste Task Force Members.

Russek reported on an RC&D Meeting held 4-9-03 in Stearns County and the process to incorporate a joint powers agreement. Mississippi River improvement projects and the trail system were identified as two areas of interest. There was consensus among the four counties to avoid duplication. The next meeting is scheduled for 5-15-03 in Foley. Sawatzke felt if the decision is made to move forward with a joint powers agreement there be a defined mission statement. Mattson concurred that duplication needs to be avoided given budget constraints. Russek noted this will be discussed further at the 4-29-03 Quad County Meeting.

Heeter read a letter prepared in support of the Central MN EMS Region EMSRB Grant application. Heeter moved to approve the letter of support, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0. The letter will be faxed later today.

Norman presented a request from AMC to adopt a proposed resolution in opposition to the Governor's provision for a reverse referendum option if a county board increases its levy from one year to another. Such a provision could have devastating impact. The property tax is the major source of county revenue. Not having flexibility with the levy combined with inflexible mandated costs, makes it difficult for counties to balance budgets. Special levies for debt bonding could also be eliminated . Concern was expressed that a reverse referendum would take away local decision making control. Sawatzke felt a cover letter specifically addressing Wright County's position should accompany the prepared resolution form. Heeter moved to adopt Resolution 03-27 opposing passage of legislation which would institute a reverse referendum on tax levy increases, to include with the resolution a cover letter from Wright County, and to send a copy to Wright County's local legislators in addition to AMC, seconded by Russek. Carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.

Heeter moved to approve a request from Court Services for an additional phone line to handle urinalysis tester calls, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

Russek moved to adopt Resolution 03-28 for final acceptance for SAP 86-618-05 (grading, base and bituminous of CSAH 18 between Giffort Avenue and CSAH 37) seconded by Sawatzke. Motion carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.

Norman stated a request has been received from Nuclear Management Company and the Division of Emergency Management to review the Wright County Nuclear Program. Sawatzke moved to schedule a Ways & Means meeting for 9:00 A.M., 04-23-03, seconded by Heeter, carried 5-0.

Bills Approved

Advantage Water Conditioning 4395.00

American Business Forms 164.07

American Institutional Supply 107.66

Ameripride Linen and Apparel 209.37

Ancom Communications, Inc. 316.31

Ancom Technical Center 5092.35

Annandale Advocate 221.10

Aramark Correctional Services 5048.66

Assn of Minnesota Counties 1050.00

Audio Communications 2799.85

Batteries Plus 139.06

Bauerly Brothers Companies 87,652.33

Bear Graphics, Inc. 571.21

Buffalo Clinic 258.00

Buffalo Glass, Inc. 154.43

Buffalo Hospital-OTPT Commerci 155.80

Buffalo City 20,053.53

Buildings Consultiing Group, Inc. 2631.24

Center Point Energy 13,892.29

Central McGowan, Inc. 181.10

Cokato City 1045.60

Computer Training Internationl 889.51

Corrections Products Co., LTD 140.84

CPS Technology Solutions 350.00

Culligan of Buffalo 219.98

Dales 66 260.91

Delano Municipal Utilities 200.00

Department of Public Safety 8430.00

Determan, Karen 146.16

DLT Solutions 6542.55

Edens Group 500.00

Enterprise Dispatch 103.50

ESRI 2940.40

Fisher Scientific 117.66

G&K Services 1222.60

Gordys Foods 143.76

Greenview, Inc. 455.28

Hardings Towing 106.50

Heeter, Karla 139.06

Herald Journal Publishing, Inc. 1413.59

Hickorytech-Wireless 659.85

Hillyard Floor Care Supply 921.59

International Code Council 131.49

Junction Towing & Auto Repair 211.93

Kandiyohi Cty Sheriffs Departm 18,425.00

Klatt True Value Electric 135.23

Lake Region Coop Oil 234.60

Lakedale Telephone Company 315.65

LaPlant Demo, Inc. 556.02

M-R Sign Company, Inc. 302.40

Marco Business Products 447.30

Martin-McAllisters Consulting 1050.00

Meeker County Sheriff 1550.00

Menards 111.79

MinnComm Paging 1004.08

Minnesota Chemical Company 357.60

Monticello Sportsmen Club 1927.00

Monticello Times 429.40

Morries Buffalo Ford Mercury 240.00

Municipal Emergency Services 460.00

National Business Systems, Inc. 11,196.62

Nextel Communications 1031.41

Norman, Richard 124.54

Office Depot 1416.89

Pats 66 172.00

Phillips Petroleum Company 104.65

Precision Prints of Wright Co. 204.48

Public Agency Training Council 275.00

Qwest 466.95

Recall Document Management Ser 286.68

Record Preservation, Inc. 359.62

Rick Hackbarth Roofing 3680.00

Royal Tire, Inc. 5688.37

Seton Identification Products 510.46

Sherburne County Sheriff 398.76

Silver Creek Township 1849.00

M Smith Publishers 197.00

South Haven City 339.60

St. Cloud Fire Equipment, Inc. 1505.06

St. Cloud Stamp & Sign 238.84

St. Cloud Technical College 264.00

Star Tribune 544.90

State of Minnesota ITD 567.49

State of MN 711.45

Superior Ford 289,339.00

Total Printing 194.42

Trophies Plus 215.82

Uniforms Unlimited 1339.25

United Rentals Highway Technol 257.73

Van Meter & Associates 405.00

Verizon Wireless 1487.97

Wachter, Troy 342.21

Waverly City 426.40

Wessman Oil Co. 105.53

West Group Payment Center 1844.03

Wright County Auditor-Treas. 902.50

Wright County Journal Press 104.10

Wright Hennepin Electric 1500.00

Wright Lumber & Millwork, Inc. 118.18

31 payments less than $100 1402.90

Final Total $532,051.00

The meeting was adjourned at 11:17 A.M.

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