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Wright County Board Minutes

July 13, 2004

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

On page 2, 5th paragraph, Sawatzke stated the 5th line, should read, “Sawatzke’s understanding was that if an EAW were performed a conditional use permit is requested and Carlson was found not to be in compliance, no permit would be issued.” Russek moved to approve the minutes of 7-6-04 as corrected, seconded by Heeter, carried 5-0.

Petitions were accepted to the Agenda as follows: Consent Item, C.4, “Accept Resignation, Dale Glunz, Highway Maintenance, Eff. 7-16-04 & Authorize Replacement” (Norman); Item For Consid., #3, “Committee Of The Whole Minutes” (Norman); Item For Consid. #4, “Announcement” (Mattson); Item #3 Under Chief Deputy Auditor, “Authorization To Hire Temporary Employees” (Hiivala). Heeter moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0.

Mattson moved to approve the Consent Agenda with the addition of C.4, second by Russek, carried 5-0.


1. Performance Appraisals: L. Davis, C. Turnquist, J. Uecker, Aud./Treas.; L. Crawford, Ct. Admin.; J. Russell, T. Waldron, Hwy.; C. Day, S. Guffey, Recorder; B. Cramb, J. Eaton, C. Glander, J. Hartmann, T. Merwin, P. Palmer, G. Sorensen, C. Torkelson, Sher./Corr.

2. O/T Report, Period Ending 7-02-04.

3. Refer Improvements to the Community Room to the Building Committee.

4. Approve/Authorize Signatures On Revised Law Enforcement Contract, City of Otsego.


1. On/Off Sale Liquor License, “Silver Creek Corner Bar,” (Silver Creek Twp.).

2. Accept Resignation, Heather Becker, Eff. 7-21-04 & Authorize Replacement.

3. Claim, MFRA, May Services, $392.50 (Fund 61-Sewer).


1. Authorize Hire, Charles Beutler, Highway Mechanic, Eff. 8-02-04 (Step 5).

2. Approve Agreement With Bulow, Inc. For Pedestrian Tunnel Under CSAH 39.

3. Approve Funding Participation & Construction Agreement With City Of Waverly For CSAH 9 Improvements.

4. Accept Resignation, Dale Glunz, Highway Maintenance, Eff. 7-16-04 & Authorize Replacement.


1. Acknowledge Resignation, Darlene Ford, Sheriff, Eff. 7-16-04 & Authorize Replacement.

2. Acknowledge Appointment, Thomas Groninga, Communications Officer, Eff. 7-12-04 (Step 1).

Due to the number of Auditor/Treasurer staff present at the meeting, Sawatzke moved to Agenda Item Of Consideration #3, Committee Of The Whole Minutes. On behalf of the County Board, Sawatzke extended appreciation for the efforts of the Auditor/Treasurer staff during the challenging and difficult time of Doug Gruber’s illness and recent death.

A Committee Of The Whole meeting was held on 7-12-04. Eichelberg moved to approve the minutes as read, seconded by Russek. In response to a question by Mattson, it was clarified the Auditor/Treasurer has the authority to appoint a Chief Deputy Auditor by State statute. Motion carried 5-0. A summary of the meeting follows:

I. Auditor/Treasurer

Norman distributed a memorandum from Brian Asleson which states that when a vacancy occurs in the office of county auditor/treasurer the County Board fills the vacancy by appointment for the remainder of the term. The person appointed is to give a bond and take the oath required by law. The Committee unanimously recommends the following:

• Appoint Bob Hiivala, Auditor/Treasurer, effective July 13, 2004, for the remainder of the current term of office.

• His salary will be $80,338, Step 4, Non-Union Salary Schedule.

• He will move to Step 5 on January 1, 2005.

• Authorize filling the Deputy Auditor position.

Sawatzke stated Hiivala would be sworn into office immediately following the Board Meeting.

Hiivala, Chief Deputy Auditor, requested approval to set sale conditions for the issuance of $8,485,000 General Obligation Solid Waste Revenue Refunding Bonds, Series 2004C. Bruce Krueger, Springsted, Inc., reviewed the recommendations for refunding of the bonds. Bids will be taken on 8-9-04 with results of the bid presented at the 8-10-04 Board Meeting. The purpose of the refunding is to receive a better interest rate and thereby reduce the solid waste debt service. Mattson moved to approve the set sale conditions as recommended, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

Krueger noted approval is needed in the form of a resolution. Eichelberg moved to approve Resolution 04-40 approving the set sale conditions as recommended, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.

Hiivala requested authorization to hire two temporary employees not to exceed the salary amount budgeted for the Chief Deputy Auditor position. The purpose is to catch up on some projects in the Auditor/Treasurer’s Department. Hiivala stated they would be clerical positions requiring some spreadsheet capabilities. The temporary positions would be used during the period of time the Chief Deputy Auditor position is vacant. Russek moved to approve the hire of two temporary employees, seconded by Heeter, carried 5-0.

Mattson moved to approve the claims as listed in the abstract, subject to audit, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.

Andy Dahlgren, SWCD, requested approval to begin the process to update the Wright County Comprehensive Water Management Plan. The process will take approximately 18 months with the final plan to be completed by December, 2005 when the current water plan expires. Sawatzke noted the County recently approved a phosphorous ordinance and questioned the status of ordinances on storm water runoff and sediment, and whether they would be included in the water management plan. Saxton stated they would probably be looked at concurrently and included in the water plan but that ordinances would not likely be completed within six months. Sawatzke expressed concern that with each week that goes by there are things occurring pre-ordinance. Heeter moved to adopt Resolution 04-41 to update the Wright County Comprehensive Water Management Plan, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.

Chuck Davis, Environmental Health Officer, requested approval of the Findings Of Fact denying the need need for an EAW on Ward Carlson’s Conditional Use Permit. The conclusion of the Findings Of Fact states the evidence presented demonstrates that there are environmental concerns related to the project, but there are ways of addressing these concerns through the conditional use permitting process. Russek moved to approve the Findings of Fact, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.

Sawatzke presented a request to appoint Bernie Beneke, Otsego, as the District 2 Park Commission representative replacing Carl Swenson who recently passed away. Sawatzke stated Swenson served on the Park Commission for a number of years and did a good job representing his district. Beneke would fill out the remainder of Swenson’s term effective 7-13-04 to 12-31-05. Russek moved to approve the appointment of Beneke, seconded by Heeter, carried 5-0.

Russek moved to authorize attendance at a one-day seminar, “Design and Planning for Criminal Justice & Detention Facilities” to be held in St. Cloud on 7-22-04, seconded by Heeter. No fee was included on the registration form. Russek stated he would not be able to attend due to a conflict with other meetings that day. Motion carried 5-0.

Mattson announced Tiffany Ogle, daughter of Norma Ogle and the late Jim Ogle of Waverly has been crowned Miss Minnesota. Congratulations and best wishes for the Miss America pageant were extended to Tiffany .

A public hearing was held at 9:30 A.M. regarding a request from the City of Delano for transfer of a portion of County Ditch #28 from the County to the City of Delano. The portion of the Ditch subject for transfer is that portion located within the Parkview Hills development. Brian Asleson, Chief Deputy Attorney, stated State statute provides that if the drainage authority determines that the storm, surface or flood waters within the Parkview Hills development could be better managed by the City of Delano, it shall authorize the transfer of that portion of the drainage system. Repairs and cleanout of that portion of the ditch would become the responsibility of the City of Delano. Asleson stated if repairs were done upstream or downstream of the development a portion of the cost could be assessed to the City as set out in statute. Kent Torve, City Engineer, reviewed the Engineering Report. According to the Engineering Report the ditch: 1) has not been improved or realigned since the original construction; 2) no easements have been recorded on the stretch the City is asking to transfer; 3) the transfer of the ditch is necessary to implement a ditch erosion protection project to reduce erosion and improve downstream water quality by reducing sediment loads; and 4) the hydralic capacity of the drainage system will not change as a result of the ditch erosion protection project. Russek expressed concern that downstream property is not flooded out and that the upstream flow is maintained. Sawatzke concurred with Russek’s concerns and questioned what authority the County Board has to ensure that the water flow is not affected. Asleson stated if the transfer is approved those conditions would be included in the order. Questions were raised regarding property damage rights, and whether new properties could potentially tie into the transferred portion of the ditch system. Asleson didn’t feel there was anything in the statute which prevents others tying into the system, but that only the benefitted owners rights are preserved with the transfer. Russek stated the upstream portion of the ditch is in bad shape with overgrown trees and several weeks ago requested authorization to look at the ditch and obtain bids for cleanout. Sawatzke opened the hearing for public comment. John Yantes stated he owns the majority of the property upstream. He expressed concern that costs to clean out the ditch would result in a huge expense to him and that he does not have a problem with the ditch as it is now and the flooding which occurs. Elton Schuette stated he is a property owner at the lower end of the ditch and each year they are experiencing slower drainage because the ditch has filled in. He questioned whether there would be any retention ponds in the transferred portion of the ditch and expressed concern that they not slow the flow of water through his property. In response to a question from Sawatzke, Kerry Saxton, SWCD, stated he had not received a copy of the Engineering Report until this morning’s meeting. Sawatzke requested Saxton review the details of the Engineering Report before the Board takes final action and for Torve to keep Saxton informed. Sawatzke closed the public hearing at 9:58 A.M.

Discussion followed regarding future assessments and how they would be handled with that portion transferred to the City of Delano. Russek moved to lay the item over for two weeks for the Attorney’s Office to draw up an order for final review by the County Board and for Saxton to review for assurance that the water flow will not be affected, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0. Torve commented that Asleson has been very helpful in working with the City of Delano. Asleson presented a request to adopt a Civil Penalty Policy For Alcohol Compliance Checks in order to assess civil penalties to liquor license holders who illegally sell to minors. The situation is complicated due to the fact that the majority of licenses in the County are issued by cities rather than by the County. Public Health has recently undertaken alcohol compliance checks with the assistance of the Sheriff’s Office and under the terms of a grant agreement with the Department of Public Safety, they must do another round of checks later this year. There is also a requirement in the grant for imposition of certain minimum penalties against those licensees who fail. Asleson referenced State Statute 340A.415 License revocation or suspension; civil penalty. Jill Hylla, Public Health, provided an update on alcohol compliance checks. Aslelson recommended adoption of a policy rather than an ordinance since statute sets maximum penalties of up to $2,000 for each violation; suspension of license for up to 60 days; revocation of license; or any combination thereof. He presented suggested penalties for sales to minors of: $200 - 1st violation; $500 - 2nd violation; and $1,000 plus one week suspension of license - 3rd violation. Frequency of violation would be monitored over a two-year period similar to tobacco compliance checks. There was general agreement on the concept for the policy. Asleson will draft a resolution to present to the County Board to adopt a Civil Penalty Policy For Alcohol Compliance Checks. There was brief discussion regarding the hearing process. Sawatzke suggested keeping the process similar to that of the tobacco ordinance.

Bills Approved

Brian Abrahamson $124.13

Albertville Body Shop 1,147.37

James Alsdurf PH D 1,250.00

American Bio Medica Corp. 234.11

Ameripride Linen/Apparel 354.74

Ancom Technical Center 1,082.18

Apex Software 1,064.95

Assn. of MN Emergency Mngrs. 200.00

B & D Plumbing/Heating 240.00

Bear Graphics Inc. 620.10

Breezy Point Resort 960.00

City Buffalo 27,643.54

Bureau of Crim. Apprehen. 12,642.00

Bureau of Crim. Apprehen. 400.00

Paul Burke 349.44

Cardiac Science 3,326.00

Careertrack 447.00

Center Point Energy 3,733.95

Central MN Mental Health 1,035.00

Clearwater Township 1,625.00

Climate Air 393.00

Dept. of Public Safety 120.00

Karen Determan 127.50

E-Z Flush 482.60

Elmer Eichelberg 150.75

Josh Erickson 258.37

Fairway Construction Inc. 33,535.00

Tom Feddema 173.63

First State Tire Recycling 908.88

Gateway Companies Inc. 2,843.56

W. Grainger Inc. 270.88

Granite City Ready Mix Co. 961.83

Karla Heeter 177.75

Amy Hertzog 151.50

Hillyard Floor Care Supply 3,016.52

J Johnson Sales & Services 880.00

JR’s Appliance Disposal Inc. 1,295.00

Lakedale Telephone Co. 418.88

LaPlant Demo Inc. 564.32

Marco Business Products 833.25

Martin-McAllisters Cons. 700.00

McDowall Company 310.00

Melissa Meemken 349.44

The Metro Group Inc. 4,776.74

MN Assn. of Assessment Pers. 270.00

MN Law Enforcement Explrs 1,050.00

Nextel Communications 1,648.77

Office Depot 2,429.02

Prosource 145.00

Pat Sawatzke 245.37

Specialty Turf & Ag 916.97

State of MN-Info Tech Div. R 348.50

Streichers 1,139.50

Total Printing 623.45

University of Minnesota 790.00

Verizon Wireless 1049.35

Waste Management TC West 1,321.71

West Group Payment Center 3,466.59

Wright Co. Auditor-Treasurer 150.00

Wright Lumber & Millwork Inc. 242.90

39 payments less than $100 $1,849.12

Final total $129,865.16

The meeting was adjourned at 10:23 A.M.

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