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Wright County Board Minutes

APRIL 22, 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 4-15-03 minutes: Page 3, 2nd paragraph, 22nd sentence should read, "There was discussion regarding whether Dave LaPlant or......" (Russek); Page 1, last paragraph, 6th should read, "...mapping project for culverts which was to be completed by December." (Mattson) Mattson moved to approve the minutes as corrected, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.

Petitions were accepted to the Agenda as follows: Under Highway Engineer Add #2 "Approve Cooperative Agreement No. 03-02 With City Of Albertville For CSAH 19 Improvements." (Fingalson); #3, "Approve Resolution For Funding CSAH 3 Project." (Fingalson); #4 Authorization For Engineer And A Commissioner To Attend MTA Washington Fly-In, June 10-12, 2003." (Fingalson); Item Of Consid. #1, "AMC Appointment To NACO Board Of Directors." (Eichelberg). Heeter moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

Matttson requested C1, "Accept Resignation, Barbara Johnson, Eff. 04-11-03 & Refer Request For Authorization For Replacement To Personnel Committee." be removed from the Agenda. Russek moved to approve the remainder of the Consent Agenda, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.


1. Performance Appraisals: B. Lutes, Attny.; V. Hawkins, Hwy.; M. Woodford, P&Z; D. Ford, Sher.; D. Konken, Sher./Corr.

2. Authorize Signature On 2003 Natural Resources Block Grant Agreement - $30,378.

3. Set County Auction Date, Saturday, 05-31-03, 10:00 A.M., Public Works Bldg.


1. Approve Hire, Wallace Peterson, Appraisal Tech., Eff. 04-23-03 (Step 3).


1. Acknowledge Termination, T. Warner, Court Attnd., Eff. 04-10-03 & Refer Request For Authorization For Replacement To Personnel Committee.


1. Set Meeting Of Leadership Team With County Commissioners, 05-01-03, 8:30 A.M., Ney Park. Mattson referenced Item C1, "Accept Resignation, Barbara Johnson, Eff. 4-11-03 & Refer Request For Authorization For Replacement To Personnel Committee." Mattson said Wyman Nelson was the County Attorney when she was hired and wished to thank her for doing a great job for Wright County. Mattson moved to approve Item C1, to accept Johnson's resignation and refer the request for replacement to the Personnel Committee, seconded by Hetter, carried 5-0.

Doug Gruber, Auditor/Treasurer, presented proposals on the sale of $2,515,000 General Obligation Capital Improvement Plan Bonds, Series 2003A, providing for their issuance and levying a tax for the payment. John Sander, Springsted Incorporated, stated the County received a strong bond rating and has moved up to an A2 rating. He reviewed the bid results of the two bidders and recommended accepting the bid from U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray Inc. Wells Fargo Brokerage Services, LLC at a price of $2,483,381.50 at a net interest cost of $1,210,568.92 and a true interest rate of 3.9159%. Russek moved to adopt Resolution #03-29 accepting the proposal from U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray Inc. Wells Fargo Brokerage Services, LLC, seconded by Sawatzke. In response to a question from Norman, Sanders stated the bond proceeds should be received the middle of May. Motion carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.

Gruber presented a request from the City of Howard Lake for a property tax abatement for the American Legion Post 145. Gruber stated the County passed a resolution in 1997 to not participate in tax abatement financing. The City needs to receive an official denial from the County in order to proceed with other options. It was noted the County denied a tax abatement request from the City of Albertville last fall and has also previously denied a request from the City of Delano. Sawatzke moved to deny the property tax abatement request from the City of Howard Lake, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

Gruber stated work was done to clean out County Ditch #10 without formal authorization from the County Board. A bill has been received from the contractor in the amount of $7,140.00. The contractor was hired by an individual farmer who said the County would pay for the work. A letter has also been received from John McNamee regarding dirt which was excavated from the ditch and piled on their property. At today's meeting, McNamee stated the farmer who rents their 20 acre parcel hopes to be able to plant next week and the dirt needs to be leveled. He stated he has contacted someone in regard to the leveling and has received an estimate. It was suggested a meeting of the involved parties be held to discuss resolution of the bill, as well as whether the ditch was cleaned out according to standards. A motion was made by Russek authorizing the dirt on the McNamee property to be leveled as soon as possible, seconded by Mattson. Gruber was requested to obtain another cost estimate for leveling before proceeding. Motion carried 5-0. Russek moved for Gruber to schedule a meeting involving the affected property owners, the contractor, Saxton from SWCD, Asleson from the Attorney's Office, and the commissioners on the Ditch Committee to resolve the issues of the ditch cleanout and bills, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.

Gruber presented a request for the purchase of a postage mailing machine from Budget 820, Site Improvement. The current mailing machine is around ten years old. The machine no longer automatically seals envelopes and departments must manually seal envelopes. Approximately $10,000 in postage is metered through the machine each month for the Government Center. He explained an upgraded machine will be needed by 2004 due to changes in postal rules and it was his intent to include the machine in his 2004 budget request. The mailing machine at Human Services will also need to be upgraded by 2004. Gruber presented cost information for mailing machine equipment from Deaton's Mailing Systems, Inc., IMS Minnesota and Pitney/Bowes. He recommended purchase of the Deaton's Mailing System based on efficiency of the sealing system, number of envelopes per minute, and ability to meter multiple sizes. Sawatzke moved to approve the purchase of the Deaton's Mailing System with funds from Budget 820, Site Improvement, seconded by Russek. Sawatzke amended his motion to include approval of a phone line to the mail room, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

Gruber distributed the March Revenue/Expenditure Report for approval. Mattson expressed concern over the amount of overtime in Human Services and requested Gruber and Norman disseminate a letter regarding overtime use. Heeter suggested this be an item of discussion at the 4-28-03 Budget Of the Whole meeting. Heeter moved to accept the March Revenue/Expenditure Report, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.

At last week's meeting a public hearing was held regarding a request for lien reapportionment on County Ditch #38. At today's meeting an apportionment order was presented for signature to apportion the entire lien for that property from Parcel # 220-000-031400 owned by Cecelia K. Florek to Parcel # 220-000-031300 owned by Mehdi Rafian-Naini and Susan Healy Rafian-Naini. Russek moved to approve Resolution #03-30 for the Apportionment Order, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.

The claims listing was reviewed. Mattson moved to approve the claims listing subject to audit, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

Chuck Davis, Planning & Zoning, stated one RFP was received by the 4-15-03 deadline to provide operation of the Wright County Solid Waste Composting Facility. The City of Hutchinson is interested in submitting an RFP and has requested a 60-90 day extension to respond. In response to a question from Sawatzke, Davis stated the RFP which has been received has not been read as he felt it would not be proper to review that RFP if the deadline were to be extended. Davis recommended a 60 day extension from today's date. There was agreement the company submitting the RFP be notified of the extension in the event they wished to submit an addendum. Sawatzke moved to extend the deadline to 4:30 P.M, 6-23-03, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0. Eichelberg stated the understanding is that the RFP which was received be sealed until 6-23-03 and they be notified of the extension and ability to submit an addendum if they wish.

Craig Hayes, Purchasing Agent presented six quotes for modification to 64 jail cell windows to decrease suicide risk, to be funded from the capital improvement account. Sawatzke moved to accept the low bid of $25,235 from Anderson Iron, Rogers, MN, seconded by Heeter, carried 5-0.

Hayes reported a broken sewer line was discovered last winter which needs to be repaired in order to add a bathroom in the new juvenile holdover facility area. A quote of $2,300 has been received to do the repair work. This was provided as an informational item.

Tom Hovde, Extension Director, introduced Patricia Larson, Nutrition Education Assistant. Larson has been working part time for five years and has recently been assigned full time to Wright County. Larson stated the program is funded with Federal food stamp dollars and is administered through the University of Minnesota. She provided an overview of the various services and groups she is involved with.

Hovde also introduced Judy Grenier, the Wright County Extension Office's Volunteer Coordinator. Grenier has had an intensive and varied background in volunteer work and coordinating volunteer activities. She introduced several volunteers who were present in the audience acknowledging the importance of their services, and their time commitment. She requested the County Board adopt a resolution proclaiming April 27 - May 3, 2003 to be Volunteer Recognition Week in Wright County; and urging all citizens to observe this period by recognizing those who contribute their time, talent, and energy in their neighborhoods and communities, and by renewing a personal commitment to volunteerism. Following reading of the proclamation, Sawatzke moved to adopt Resolution #03-31 proclaiming April 27 - May 3, 2003 to be Volunteer Recognition Week in Wright County, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.

Asleson distributed written comments prepared to submit to the MPCA regarding the Superior Landfill Expansion Permit. The deadline for receiving comments is 4-22-03 and if approved by the Board will be faxed later today. Salkowski stated a great deal of work went into editing the comments and felt the statement was solid. Mattson moved to approve the comments as written to be submitted to MPCA, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

A Transportation Committee Of The Whole meeting was held 04-03-033. A summary of the minutes and action at today's meeting follows:

1. Review Draft Official Mapping Ordinance. A draft copy of a map ordinance for Wright County was presented and reviewed. An official map can help simplify the description of several parcels of land that form a larger area but that are acquired at various times, such as park land acquisitions. It can also designate areas for future right-of-way acquisition needed for a project that is planned years in advance and help prevent further development in the area needed for expansion. Adoption of a map ordinance authorizes the County to prohibit construction or improvement on properties that have been designated in the mapping area. If construction or improvements are begun/completed in spite of the restriction, the County or State then has the authority to acquire those properties. A map ordinance could be adopted by Wright County alone or possibly with the four cities that are involved in the corridor. It was suggested the affected cities be sent a copy of the "Draft" so they could consider joining Wright County or draft their own ordinance. Recommendation: Put this item on the County Board Agenda for discussion, and at that time a recommendation can be made to send the "Draft" to affected cities for their review and input. At today's meeting the consensus of the Board was to proceed with sending a letter to cities.

2. Request From City of Rockford For Stop Sign On CSAH 20. The Board agreed to continue this issue to another time when officials from the City of Rockford could be present to address their concerns. Russek offered to contact them and see if they were still interested in pursuing this issue.

3. Request From City Of Buffalo. A request has been received from the City of Buffalo requesting that City vehicles be allowed to fuel up at the County's gas/fuel pumps in an effort to save money by changing their current practice of filling up at the local businesses in town. Approximately 30 different units from four different departments would use the pumps. A coded key could be used so that a billing could be generated . The City consumes about 30,000 gal/year. The Highway Department is eager to cooperate in this effort if a reasonable charge can be calculated that would reflect fair costs of wear and tear on the pumps and for billing activities. Recommendation: There was consensus that Fingalson contact other counties to find out what they charge other entities for purchasing gas/fuel at their pumps and that he contact the City of Buffalo and to find out what volume of fuel they would likely purchase through the County. At today's meeting, Fingalson stated he has been informed by the City they would not be fueling diesel vehicles so their request for fueling would involve approximately ten vehicles and 10,000 gallons/year. Twelve counties were contacted regarding the amount they charge with the average being about 6 cents/gallon. All of the counties also charged non-highway departments between 3-5 cents/gallon. Fingalson stated some counties put part of the amount collected into a dedicated fund for system replacement. There was discussion on the amount to be charged. Russek moved to negotiate with the City of Buffalo proposing a five cent/gallon surcharge, seconded by Sawatzke. Sawatzke wasn't sure the amount collected would be worth the bookkeeping involved to separate the money into administrative and dedicated accounts. Fingalson felt whatever could be dedicated would help and said it could be substantial if large use departments like the Sheriff's Department were charged a two to three cents surcharge. There was agreement there should be a one year trial period. Motion carried 5-0.

4. Discuss Request From City Of Cokato For Salt/Sand. Fingalson distributed a hand-out of considerations regarding the City of Cokato's request to purchase salt/sand directly at the County shop in Cokato. One recommendation is that a scale be purchased for a loader so that quantities could be accurately calculated. It was suggested the City pay for the scale. There was discussion on liability, current method used to charge Townships and Cities that purchase through the County and pick up their salt/sand in Buffalo, reorder costs, storage, and how to handle potential requests from others. Recommendation: There was consensus that Fingalson, Meyer and Mattson meet with City of Cokato officials to discuss the various concerns associated with the request and report back to the Board. At today's meeting Fingalson reported a meeting was held with City representatives and they will be meeting again in a month. The minutes were corrected to reflect Heeter's attendance. It was noted the arrangement would be a one year pilot project.

5. Discuss Status Of Consolidated Maintenance Facility With City Of Albertville. The City of Albertville has offered to include space in their new Public Works Facility for the Wright County Albertville shop in exchange for the County's current facility and property that is located on the northwest corner of the CSAH 19 & 18 intersection. The Highway Department has some concerns about sharing facilities and the approach to the proposed site which is located near Albertville's waste water treatment site. Fingalson and representatives from Albertville visited the joint facility in Hutchinson which seems to work fine.

A copy of the proposed layout of the Albertville facility was reviewed. The Highway Department would like to see an office area and bathroom area separate from the City's in the structure. Wright County's portion of the cost is estimated at $300,000, but the County's current site could be worth even more than that. There was discussion on putting the County property up for bids, access to the location, longevity of the arrangement and potential of the Mn/DOT location instead. Recommendation: There was consensus that a Task Force be appointed to study the proposal for shared maintenance facilities with the City of Albertville and that Steve Meyer, Wayne Fingalson, Elmer Eichelberg, Pat Sawatzke, and City of Albertville representatives comprise the Task Force. Fingalson will contact the City for their input regarding the Task Force. At today's meeting Fingalson reported two council members from the City of Albertville have been appointed to the Task Force and the intent is to proceed with discussions. Sawatzke felt the MNROAD location should also continue to be considered.

6. Discuss Snow/Ice Control Policy. Growth in population is one of the factors driving the need for a policy. Demands for service are increasing and a formal policy would provide good direction for the Highway Department when scheduling snow/ice control, such as how and when to plow/treat the roads. Some counties have a two-inch minimum policy for snow removal, while some do not begin services until 5:00 a.m. Wright County crews are currently sent out about 2:00 a.m., after or during a snow/ice storm, but encouragement of the media to the public to get an earlier start to work on such days is beginning to hamper their efforts. Crews are limited to the length of shift they are allowed to work and weather is the biggest determining factor on when the shift should begin. Recommendation: There was consensus that a snow/ice policy be drafted for consideration by the County Board and the group drafting the policy consist of two commissioners, a crew supervisor, a representative from the Sheriff's Department, two highway maintenance employees (one from the night shift), the Highway Engineer, the Highway Maintenance Superintendent, and Assistant County Attorney. At today's meeting Russek stated the minutes should reflect that the two commissioners would be the Transportation Committee Members (Russek and Mattson).

7. Discuss Timeline For 5-Year Public Meeting/Road Tour; Review Tentative 5-Year Plan. Copies of Wright County's five-year summary for its road and bridge construction program were distributed. One major grading project, one major bridge project, and about 20 miles of overlay have generally been planned for each year. By the end of 2003, the County will have borrowed from future state aid funding a total of $3.5 million, and will continue having to borrow into the future to continue with plans. Federal dollars have helped fund some of the projects on the current plan, which takes away some of the burden from state-aid and local dollars. The 10-year work plan and chart showing the reduction in local dollars levied for construction were reviewed. For many years local dollars were used for right-of-way and overlay costs. Using state aid for these items has helped keep the levy down, but has been detrimental to the Road/Bridge budget. Jobs receiving federal funds have deadlines that have to be met in order to be eligible for those funds. The overlay scheduled for CSAH 3 may not be able to be done if funds are short. Fingalson stated there are a lot of projects that aren't even addressed in the five-year summary. Proposed development east and north of Albertville will require extensive attention and road construction. It is hoped that the developers will be instrumental in paying for the roads that become necessary because of the increasing number of home sites. Recommendation: There was consensus that at a future Board meeting the County Board set a date for a Public Information Meeting on the County's Five Year Road Plan and for the road tour. At today's meeting Heeter moved to schedule a transportation public information meeting for 05-29-03 at 1:30 P.M. in the Board Room, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0. Heeter moved to approve the minutes as corrected, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.

Russek moved to approve Cooperative Agreement No. 03-02 with the City of Albertville for CSAH 19 Improvements, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0. According to the agreement the County will reimburse the City $50,000/year for 15 years commencing in 2004, for a total County contribution of $750,000.

Fingalson requested approval of a resolution for funding the CSAH 3 improvement project (reclamation, overlay and turn lanes). It is now possible to advance encumber from the general state aid fund with repayment of the funds from Federal funds which are programmed for the STIP in FY 2004. Fingalson noted the project was scheduled for 2004 but would now be able to do the project a year earlier. Mattson moved to adopt Resolution #03-32 for advance funding of CSAH 3 improvements, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.

Fingalson requested authorization for the Highway Engineer and one Commissioner to attend the MTA Washington Fly-In, June 10-12, 2003. He stated Congress will pass a bill that will determine which transportation programs receive federal funding for the next six years and feels attendance plays a role in who receives the money. Eichelberg stated that although budgets are being cut, it is money well spent and felt meeting with legislators personally makes a difference. Mattson felt Congressman Kennedy is a strong supporter of Wright County and keeping in contact with his office locally is important and can be effective. Sawatke felt with the budget situation it would be best to not send anyone this year. Russek stated he has gone in the past and felt it was beneficial, but given the budget restraint agreed with Sawtzke regarding close contact with Kennedy. Eichelberg stated we can't expect Mr. Kennedy to do all the work, that he feels strongly about sending someone, and that meeting with the legislators personally does have an impact. Fingalson stated he would not compare this to a conference but an opportunity to try to secure federal funds for the County, and that the counties that show up have the best chance of securing funds. Mattson moved to not approve attendance given the current budget constraints, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 4-1 with Eichelberg voting against the motion.

At last week's Board Meeting, Mattson raised a question regarding completion of a culvert mapping project. Barb Chafee and Luann Glieden, Central Minnesota Jobs & Training Services were present at today's meeting to provide additional information. Glieden stated the priority of the national emergency grant is to get people back to work who have lost their jobs due to flooding. In Wright County no one lost their job due to flooding, but the projects needed to be related to flooding in order to qualify for funding. At this time there are three months left in the project. Mattson stated some of the townships have never been contacted and questioned what training individuals receive. Glieden stated the two people working on the mapping project had just completed Anoka Tech's mapping program. Trish Taylor, along with Chafee and Glieden requested they be contacted as soon as possible whenever there are questions or concerns so they can be addressed.

Eichelberg stated he received a letter from AMC soliciting letters of interest from county commissioners for appointment to the NACo Board of Directors, and that he would be interested in submitting his name for consideration. Russek moved to support Eichelberg submitting a letter of interest, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.

Bills Approved

Advantage Emblem, Inc. 355.84

Ancom Technical Center 1154.63

Aramark Correctional Services 5110.34

AT&T - Universal Biller 4212.08

Backes, Joe 312.12

Bob Barker Co. 279.83

Buff'N'Glo, Inc. 130.00

Buffalo Clinic 361.00

Buffalo Hospital 7897.00

Buffalo Quality Feed Mill 705.60

Buffalo City 5087.89

Bureau of Criminal Apprehensn 750.00

Catco Parts Service 352.54

CCP Industries, Inc. 182.61

CDW Government, Inc. 184.88

Center Point Energy 6987.95

Centra Sota Lake Region, LLC 12,994.97

Central Lock & Safe 223.50

Chamberlain Oil Co. 1716.97

H. Christiansen Company 462.20

Clearwater Township 933.70

Climate Air 3269.46

Consulting Radiologists LTD 185.00

Contech Construction Product 10,014.00

Corinna Township 1323.10

Corner House 750.00

Decorative Designs, Inc. 175.53

Department of Public Safety 120.00

Erickson, Josh 120.24

Exxon Mobil 643.40

Facility Systms, Inc. 885.76

Fieldworks 737.66

Gasboy International 150.00

Glock, Inc. 170.00

Hanover City 1484.80

Heart of the Lakes Pumping 207.00

Hillyard Floor Care Supply 642.05

Howard Lake City 1050.60

Info Logic 1062.50

J Craft Div of Crysteel Mfg. 149.10

Jerry's Towing & Repair 175.72

Kramers Hardware 192.45

Letta 600.00

Loberg Electric 1926.62

Lund Industries, Inc. 506.00

Masys Corporation 2628.87

Metro Group, Inc., The 1025.06

MN Assn of Assessing Officers 700.00

MN Highway Safety and Research 392.00

MN State Auditor 1416.75

MN Transportation Alliance 1500.00

Monticello Ford Mercury, Inc. 2523.03

National Business Systems, Inc. 5060.14

New Horizons Computers Learnin 4500.00

Office Depot 1320.25

Lynn Peavey Company 741.35

Phillips Petroleum Company 1538.23

Phillips 66 Quik Shop-Rockford 104.44

Photo I 768.54

Powerplan 1925.00

Precision Prints of Wright Co. 144.84

Quartermaster, Inc. 136.95

Qwest 7289.30

Record Preservation, Inc. 655.29

Rigid Hitch Incorporated 260.36

Rockford Township 2726.20

Schubert, Sharon 124.92

Brenda Shald & Associates 633.34

Sheriffs Youth Programs of MN 387.00

Snowplows Plus 151.36

St. Cloud Fire Equipment, Inc. 819.93

St. Michael Veterinary Clinic 265.62

State of Minnesota ITD 1031.35

State of MN Intertech Group 827.40

Sterling Drug 3318.05

Stratus Technologies Ireland L 8068.00

Superior Ford 20,631.00

Swanson Brothers Trapline Srvc 154.80

Tools Unlimited 368.81

Total Printing 372.54

Uniforms Unlimited 292.95

Vibes Technologies, Inc. 1113.89

Wang, Lori 114.56

Weber, Gordon 343.20

Weinberger, James 375.12

Wells Fargo 300.00

West Suburban Industrial Suppl 138.44

Westside Equipment 122.00

Wright-Hennepin Electric 4523.93

WSB & Associates, Inc. 9398.64

Xcel Energy 219.74

44 payments less than $100 1864.84

Final Total $170,254.67

The meeting was adjourned at 11:50 A.M.

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