Wright County Board Minutes
August 23, 2005
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Heeter, Sawatzke, Mattson, Russek and Eichelberg present.
Russek moved to approve the minutes of 8-16-05, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0.
Petitions were accepted to the Agenda as follows: Hwy. Engineer Item #3, “Speed Study” (Sawatzke); Hwy. Engineer Item #4, “Road Closed At Montrose” (Mattson). Russek moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0.
On a motion by Eichelberg, second by Heeter, all voted to approve the Consent Agenda:
1. Performance Appraisals: J. Palm, Bld. Maint.; J. Tazelaar, Ct. Ser.; A. Sturm, Sher./Cr.
2. Approve & Authorize Signing Contract For Coroner Services, Midwest Forensic Pathology.
3. Approve/Authorize Signature On Agreement with MCIT For Drug & Alcohol Testing Program.
4. Charitable Gambling Application Form LG220, Ladies Ducks Unlimited #256, Silver Springs Golf Course (Monticello).
A Detention Committee Of The Whole Meeting was held on 8-11-05. At today’s County Board Meeting, Heeter provided an overview of the minutes. Mattson deferred discussion and approval of the minutes to later in today’s meeting.
Bob Hiivala, Auditor/Treasurer, requested the Board approve designations of unreserved fund balances for the year ended 12-31-04. The designations include amounts anticipated for cash flow purposes (until receipt of tax payments) and compensated absences (employee pay outs for vacation and sick leave). The change this year is the actual designations used in the financial statements are limited to fund balances. Sawatzke moved to approve the designations as follows, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0:
General Revenue, Designation for Cash Flow $9,251,138; Designation for Compensated Absences $1,425,059
Road & Bridge, Designation for Cash Flow $2,524,054; Designation for Compensated Absences $236,822
Human Services, Designation for Cash Flow $4,378,267; Designation for Compensated Absences $391,872
The claims listing was reviewed. Hiivala referenced claims on page 5, Ernst General Construction ($190.76) and page 11, Ernst General Construction ($51.03). Hiivala said the claims listing has been corrected to be payable to Debbie Ernst on both claims (for mileage). On a motion by Heeter, second by Russek, all voted to approve the claims as listed in the abstract, subject to audit.
Brian Asleson, Chief Deputy Attorney, referenced a Ditch 33 Public Hearing which occurred at the last County Board Meeting. The Hearing was held due to the request by the City of Monticello to outlet storm water to Ditch 33. The consensus at the Hearing was that a public informational meeting should be held for those residents unable to attend the Public Hearing. The Public Hearing was recessed until 9-06-05 at which time staff will present a recommendation to the County Board. Today, Asleson said he had not received confirmation from the City on the 8-31-05 proposed date for the informational meeting. Possible locations would include the Monticello Community Center or the Monticello Township Hall. Statutes allow for a public informational meeting and the entire Board would not be expected to attend. After the Public Hearing held last week, Sawatzke discussed the issue with some residents in attendance. Some of the residents who were opposed at the start of the meeting had learned more about the request and realized possible benefits. He thought most residents would support the request if they understood what was being proposed. He thought the City Engineers should take the lead role on this informational meeting. As the County Board is the Ditch Authority, Asleson requested they establish a date for the informational meeting. Notices would be sent to ditch residents and posted outside of the County Administration Office. The Township will be mailed a copy also. Sawatzke requested that any costs associated with this request be tracked and charged to the developer. Asleson said the County could, as part of the approval to outlet storm water, attach this as a condition for approval. Sawatzke said approval could include the County’s claim to the $160,000 the City holds in escrow if the project does not move forward. Asleson will discuss this issue with Kurt Deter and this will be addressed in their recommendation on 8-06-05. Sawatzke moved to schedule a Ditch 33 Informational Meeting on either of the following two dates: 8-31-05 @ 7:00 P.M. (1st choice) or 9-01-05 @ 7:00 P.M. (2nd choice). The Monticello City Engineers should take the lead role on this meeting. Asleson plans to attend and will also inform Kerry Saxton, SWCD, of the meeting. The motion was seconded by Russek and carried 5-0.
Wayne Fingalson, Highway Engineer, requested the Board schedule a Transportation Committee Of The Whole (TCOTW) Meeting to address the following items: 1) CSAH 17 Trail Status; 2) Discuss Options For Vehicle Storage Building; 3) Albertville Issues (Hwy. 19 and the new connection with I-94); and 4) Highway 55 Corridor Coalition. Fingalson said the TCOTW needs to address the Albertville Truck Station. He has been unable to make contact with the firm selling the property the County wishes to obtain for the new shop. Eichelberg requested that the “Hanover Light” be added to the TCOTW Agenda as well. Fingalson was directed to notify the Hanover City Administrator of the meeting. Russek requested that the TCOTW Agenda include, “Overpass On County Line Road.” Russek moved to schedule a TCOTW Meeting for 9-07-05 at 1:00 P.M. to include the six Agenda items as indicated, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.
Fingalson provided an update from the last Highway 55 Corridor CoalitionMeeting and distributed a copy of the 8-17-05 Financial Report. At that meeting, Congressman Mark Kennedy presented the Coalition with $4 million in Federal funding toward future TH55 projects. The Coalition asked for a total appropriation of $25 million over the life of the Transportation and Reauthorization bill and received $4 million of the $5 million requested for the first year. The Coalition has scheduled another meeting on 9-16-05 to discuss which projects will be funded. The Coalition has also approved the RFP to hire a consultant to perform the environmental assessment from I-494 to Rockford. This consultant may not be hired until February, 2006. The portion in District 3 (Rockford to Buffalo) will be completed by staff. Fingalson said intersections on Highway 55 have been identified for improvements because of crash history and traffic volume. Two of those identified included the intersections of TH55/CR 134 and TH55/CSAH 12 near Buffalo. The TH55/CR 134 intersection is near the location of the new Menards. The TH55/CSAH 12 intersection is west of Buffalo near the new elementary school (opening January 2006). At the Coalition Meeting, Commissioner Steele expressed her concern with distribution of the funding toward Hennepin County projects. Fingalson felt that there was a good chance that Wright County would receive funding for one and possibly both of the projects. Funding for projects will be discussed at future TCOTW meetings. The County will be required to provide a 20% match on these projects. Menards will fund $200,000 toward traffic signal improvements at the TH55/CR 134 intersection. Fingalson will contact Mn/DOT for a possible match at the other intersection. Fingalson said the $4 million is authorized but not appropriated. There is the potential of receiving this funding each year for appropriation each Spring. However, the $4 million must be expended each year in order to receive additional funding. Fingalson said there would be no problem with utilizing the funding but they would need to prioritize projects. With the TH55/CSAH 12 project, additional ROW is not required. This is not the case with the TH55/CR 134 project, which will require additional ROW. The estimated cost to extend this improvement on TH55 is $2.2 million. The improvement would include two lanes in either direction to be consistent with the improvements currently being made to TH55.
Sawatzke said Fingalson had contacted him this morning with the results of the speed study performed by the State on CSAH 18. In the Albertville area, the speed will be reduced from 55mph to 50mph in the residential area near the golf course. In the area east of School Boulevard on CSAH 18 (down the hill from the former Monte Club), the speed will be increased from 45mph to 50mph. Sawatzke said prior to the speed study being conducted, he voiced concern that he did not want the speed limit to increase as a result of the study. At that time, Fingalson’s response was that it would not increase. Sawatzke said that this area is becoming more urbanized daily. Fingalson said the State determines the safe and reasonable speed. Traffic is traveling at 52mph on CSAH 18. The Assistant Highway Engineer travels CSAH 18 each day and Fingalson said he thought the appropriate speed was 50mph. Fingalson’s recommendation was to support the State’s determination that 50mph is the appropriate speed for this roadway. Sawatzke suggested the Board pass a motion not to raise the speed limit. Fingalson said if this were the Board’s position , he would make that case. When he made the statement in past discussions that the speed would not increase on CSAH 18, he did not know the traffic speed on the road. The road is also safer and wider than it was previously. Sawatzke again referenced the development of homes and expansion of the church in the area. He did not feel it made sense to increase the speed limit. Sawatzke made a motion that the position of Wright County, not only the County Board but the Highway Department, is that this section of CSAH 18 should remain at the 45mph speed limit and not be changed. The motion was seconded by Russek. Eichelberg noted that the portion of CSAH 18 from the Albertville truck station to past the golf course will change from 55mph to 50mph. Fingalson said the speed limit of 45mph in the area near School Boulevard was established many years ago with an older road and not many shoulders. Sawatzke said the speed limit was always 45mph. Back then, the land was agricultural and there was not development occurring. He had driven the road and did not support anything over 45mph, as many vehicles are turning in and out of developments. The motion carried 5-0.
Mattson said the Montrose Days Celebration occurred this past weekend. He referenced the road closure associated with the CSAH 12 project and inactivity on the project. Area residents have been issued tickets for using the road when no one is working on it. When a complaint is registered with the City, they claim it is the County’s fault. When the County is contacted, they inform the caller to contact the City. Fingalson said he has discussed the situation with the City’s Engineer who told Fingalson that there had been construction activity on the road regularly up to two weeks ago. Fingalson has heard otherwise from other people. He understands the contractor’s subcontractor has not completed work on turf establishment which is delaying the project. He felt the contractor would be incurring major penalties due to exceeding the project working days. There is some County involvement on the project but the City is managing the project. The City elected to wait for a 45-day period before the wearing course is put down as they were concerned with settlement. Fingalson’s experience is that the only way to obtain a proper settlement effect is by going through a pre-thaw cycle. His understanding was that the road would be paved yet this week and the detour would be released. However, Fingalson said the County will now start their project (south of CR 107) and may start grading as early as the last week of August. He had concern that the traveling public would lose respect for signing. The County’s project will include the current detour portion, so there will not be the option of lifting the detour in Montrose. Mattson felt it was confusing as some days the residents are allowed to travel the road and some days they are issued tickets for doing so. Fingalson said the ticketing came as a result of a vehicle going off the road in the construction area. He also had concern with the upcoming County project and vehicles abiding by the detours. He said a bridge will be out on the County project so the road will be closed.
Discussion resumed on the Detention Committee Minutes of 8-11-05. Sawatzke made the following correction to the minutes: Page 1, 3rd paragraph, last sentence should read, “Removing a pod would reduce the maximum population to 390.” Sawatzke said that discussion included the expansion of the facility to 600 beds through the addition of pods. The original discussion was 260 beds, double bunked to 450 capacity. He said it was the consensus of those at the Detention Committee fewer pods should be occupied. It was also decided that one pod could be bid as an alternate and that all cells would be double bunked from day one. Captain Gary Torfin said they are not counting those as part of the initial capacity. Removal of one pod would reduce the total population to 230 (double bunked to 390). Sawatzke estimated that taxpayers would save a lot through double bunking, as 85% of jail costs are in operations and staffing. Torfin felt 80% was a more accurate figure. Sawatzke said that through double bunking, a 40% savings would be realized and half the staff would be required. Although this was not listed in the recommendation of the Committee minutes, he wanted the Architect to understand that the Board was supportive of this. Torfin said the architect understands one pod will be bid as an alternate and the staffing analysis would be redone. This information will be presented at the next Detention Committee Of The Whole Meeting on 8-29-05. Sawatzke requested to add the following sentence to page 2, 2nd paragraph, Jail Capacity/Staffing/Courts recommendation, “The Board is looking at bidding one pod as an alternate.” Sawatzke said it was not his goal to build a jail that would need immediate expansion. The proposed facility would have the ability for 150 beds to be added later through expansion. The problem with the current jail facility is that it was not built with the ability to expand. Heeter moved to approve the minutes including the corrections to pages 1 and 3 as noted. The motion was seconded by Sawatzke and carried 3-0 (Russek and Eichelberg abstained as they were not present at the Detention Committee Meeting). The Committee Minutes follow:
Jail Programming. The Committee reviewed the draft Final Report (attached). The document reflects the proposed facility and size, site utilization, staffing analysis, project schedule and budget. Illustrations include the ability to expand upon the site for future growth.
Site Expansion. Recommendation: On page 3, the reference to a new Human Services Building will be deleted and replaced with “future expansion of County facilities and parking.”
Jail Capacity/Staffing/Courts. Considerable discussion occurred on the savings realized through double bunking, both in staff and construction costs. Sawatzke suggested that double bunking be used from the onset for more efficient staff coverage. He said the report reflects a 450-bed jail and the inmate numbers are not at that point. He suggested not constructing 1-2 of the pods until a future date. Sheriff Miller said the direction the Jail Programming Committee received was to build the jail with the idea not to add pods for 20 years. The direction they took was to build the facility to 260 beds with the capacity of 450, to avoid future construction and associated costs. He projected by the time the building is completed, they will utilized 150-175 beds for Wright County inmates. They could also consider bed rental as a means of generating revenue. Inmate classification would impact space requirements. Haines approximated a cost differential of $3.3 million (raw construction) to construct two of the four pods. The land area would still be available for horizontal expansion. Some areas would be built to accommodate future expansion (i.e., kitchen) but may not be stocked to keep the initial capital costs to a minimum. With regard to mechanical items, some systems may not have to be installed initially but added as needed. Two of the pods could be bid as an alternate. The County would have until bids are awarded to decide whether to pursue this route. If the County Board elected to remove one pod, Torfin preferred the pod for the medium security male population to maintain infrastructure. Removing a pod would reduce the maximum population to 390. With regard to staffing requirements reflected on page 9, the report could be modified to reflect current and future staffing levels. There are currently 43 staff members in the jail (35 correction officers, 3 programming staff, 2 clerical, 1-Asst. Jail Administrator, 1-Jail Administrator). When the Jail Programming Committee met the last time, a DOC Jail Inspector suggested proceeding with development of staffing projections for the new facility. Those projections are included in the draft document based upon conversations with staff. Haines felt it was important that current management philosophy be incorporated into the new jail to maximize staff, living space, etc. Heeter referenced methamphetamine use and its impact on increased jail occupancy. She inquired about in-house treatment options. Haines responded that multi-purpose areas could be developed to deliver various programs. Nationwide, the prison population is increasing dramatically due to methamphetamine problems and the desire by the public to have users incarcerated. Discussion led to Section 11 and accommodations for the courts. At their last meeting, the County Board approved a proposal with Buetow & Associates Architects to perform a space study for a sixth District Court Judge, a sixth courtroom, and attendant spaces within the Government Center. It was the consensus that Section 11 should be removed from the draft document. Haines did not feel the projects needed to be bid together because of their size. Cost savings realized by doing the projects together would include such things as general construction costs (one superintendent vs. two, one contractor trailer vs. two, etc.). The site would allow for future expansion for courts and for secure connections to the jail. Kelly questioned whether it would be more advantageous to initially build both facilities rather than to expend dollars on remodeling projects that will only allow for short-term growth. Haines confirmed that more would be spent overall through temporary, transitional pieces. It was felt that the jail facility should be addressed separately to expedite that project. Mattson said the main objective was to construct a jail/sheriff facility. He had concern with moving courts to another site. Human Services employees from the 3rd Floor Annex also work closely with courts. Recommendation: The document reflects the capacity for 600 beds. The language will be changed to 260 cells with the capacity of 450 beds through double bunking. The report will reflect cost comparisons for three and four pods. The staffing requirements on page 9 will be modified to show figures reflecting current staff, initial staff at opening, and projected figures associated with phased occupancy. Section 11 relating to construction of a court area will be deleted from the draft document. The Board is looking at bidding one pod as an alternate. It was recommended that a Committee Of The Whole Meeting be scheduled for the purpose of focusing on the Courts issue.
Page 11 of the draft document outlines the schedule with projected occupancy in August, 2008. The Study Phase will be completed in August with County authorization of the project in September. In December, the County Board will address whether to proceed with the next phase of design work. At that time, they could also address whether the architectural team would proceed with design work for a judicial facility. Recommendation: The draft report will be revised and presented to the County Board at their 9-20-05 meeting.
Page 14 of the document reflects the total project cost at $43,663,336. Norman referenced Item 5B, “Communications Equipment (by owner)” which is estimated at $0 and inquired what communication equipment the County was responsible for. Haines indicated this would include the dispatch equipment not accounted for under this capital improvement project. The project will include space for the communication division but not include the cost of the equipment. Sheriff Miller said the equipment will include the 800 Mhz System. State funding support of the system is unknown at this time. The costs for bond counsel, issuance of bonds, etc. will run about 3% and are not reflected in the draft document. Item 6C, Impact Fees ($123,487), includes SAC/WAC fees and building permits. The County will receive a credit for SAC/WAC fees for the current site once vacated. However, SAC/WAC fees will be assessed for all beds in the new facility. It was noted that the County does not charge the City for boarding of prisoners.
Space Standards. Norman distributed a copy of the County’s space standards reflecting space allocated to offices. Some of the space in the draft does not correlate to the existing County standards. Recommendation: The draft document will be modified to include the County’s space standards and will include illustrations. The appendix will be revised to reflect only those standards. The next Detention Committee Of The Whole Meeting will be held on 8-29-05 at 1:30 P.M. (End of Detention Committee Of The Whole Minutes)
Allied Graphics. $1,643.11
American Business Forms 5,251.97
Ameripride Linen /Apparel 207.79
Aramark Corr. Services 4,909.52
Arctic Glacier Inc. 643.29
Dale Ashwill 3,000.00
Auto Glass Center, Inc. 411.81
B & D Plumbing/Heating 681.00
Barnes Distribution 449.09
Benton Trophy & Awards Inc. 320.24
Black Box Resale Serv. 203.42
Blaine Lock & Safe Inc. 2,024.42
Boyer Truck Parts 172.87
Buffalo Bituminous 46,115.55
Buffalo Hospital 8,800.00
buffalo Hosp.-Otpt.Comm. 173.33
Cellular One 219.85
Center Point Energy 1,099.51
Centra Sota Lake Region 20,621.99
Central MN Mental Health 415.00
Climate Air 1,290.57
City Cokato 113.64
Contech Const. Product 8,854.16
Corinna Township 1,096.40
Davis-Lobdell Inst. Inc. 340.26
Duininck Bros. Inc. 61,224.06
Elness Design Sutdio 2,705.10
Emerg. Physicians Pa 248.00
Debbie Ernst 241.79
Wayne Fingalson 316.24
First State Tire Recycling 197.23
Paul Fladung 389.98
Todd Gau 273.48
Going Under Dive Center 258.16
Gordy’s Foods 146.70
W Grainger Inc. 304.42
Granite Pest Constrol Serv. 127.80
Barbara Holmes 1,070.66
Interstate All Battery Ctr. 143.24
Jerry’s Towing & Repair 234.30
Junction Towing/Auto Repair 172.53
Karels Towing 136.32
Klatt True Value Electric 185.42
Cheryl Klinger 100.00
Kustom Signals Inc. 684.16
Lab Safety Supply Inc. 272.03
Lakedale Telephone Co. 112.70
LaPlant Demo Inc. 200.00
LexisNexis Matthew Bender 110.00
Loberg Electric 554.93
M-R Sign Company 266.41
Marco Business Products 1,107.40
MASYS Corporation 2,628.87
McDowall Company 17,396.78
Mid-Minnesota Hot Mix Inc. 23,258.57
Middleville Township 1,143.70
MN Assn. of Assessing Ofcrs. 630.00
MN Elevator Inc. 368.01
Monticello Township 2,454.70
City Montrose 634.20
Motorola Communication 2,918.96
Northland Pharmacy 124.93
Office Depot 2,584.99
Powerplan OIB 1,198.08
Prosource One 3,031.30
Pts of America LLC 748.00
Retrofit Recycling Inc. 5,367.72
Royal Tire Inc. 3,690.23
RTVision Inc. 995.76
Shell Fleet Plus 3,630.38
Silver Creek Press Inc. 1,723.00
Star Tribune 788.32
State of MN-Info Tech Div 339.93
Sweeney Brothers 1,000.61
Total Printing 310.98
Keith Triplett 391.55
Uniforms Unlimited 3,543.62
United Rentals Hwy. Tech. 153.89
Conrad Webb 100.00
Wright-Hennepin Electric 1,153.52
Xcel Energy 340.10
Zack’s Inc. 2,611.63
Ziegler Inc. 125.60
22 Payments less than $100 1,026.94
Final total $273,986.36
The meeting adjourned at 10:12 A.M