Wright County Board Minutes

WRIGHT COUNTY BOARD MINUTES
APRIL 14, 2009
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Sawatzke, Mattson, Russek, Eichelberg and Thelen present.
Russek moved to approve the 4-07-09 County Board Minutes, seconded by Mattson, carried 5-0.
Petitions were accepted to the Agenda as follows: Amend Consent Agenda Item #4 to include a letter from the City of Mayer regarding the City’s experience with RW Farms. Consent Item #4 will read, “Letter From James Ische, Carver County Commissioner, & Letter From Chris Capaul, Mayor, City of Mayer, RE: RW Farms” (Eichelberg). The following was added under Items For Consideration: #5, “Proclamation Declaring April As Autism Awareness Month” (Mattson). Eichelberg moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0.
The Consent Agenda was discussed. Eichelberg requested that Item A4, “Letter From James Ische, Carver County Commissioner, & Letter From Chris Capaul, Mayor, City of Mayer, RE: RW Farms” be pulled for discussion. Eichelberg moved to approve the remainder of the Consent Agenda, seconded by Thelen. Mattson referenced the letter from the Carver County Commissioner and asked whether Norman had requested it. Norman indicated he had not. Mattson asked whether anyone on the Board had requested the letter. Eichelberg stated he talked to Carver County and said if they chose to write a letter to send it to the County Board. The motion carried unanimously:
A. ADMINISTRATION
1. Performance Appraisals: E. Liberato, Atty.; B. Bersie, Hwy.; T. Halberg, Sher.
2. O/T Report, Period Ending 4-03-09.
3. Change Order No. 1, Re-roofing Project, $4,682.51.
B. INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
1. Refer To Personnel Committee Discussion RE: Prioritize IT Department Hires.
Item A4 was discussed, “Letter From James Ische, Carver County Commissioner, & Letter From Chris Capaul, Mayor, City of Mayer, RE: RW Farms.” Eichelberg said that after the meeting, he wanted more information for himself on RW Farms. He learned that they did want to write a letter to the County. Eichelberg felt they had good points about RW Farms and the work they do (receiving awards, doing the necessary things). Eichelberg said it seemed both the Carver County Chair and the Mayor of Mayer are positive about this, and they are both elected officials from Carver County. Eichelberg referenced the time the County spent in meetings discussing the proposal and felt it was unfortunate that it was voted down. He stated there are 49,000 parcels paying for the Compost Site and there are many constituents in his District questioning why there is not something more that can be done at the site other than hazardous waste. He wanted to present to the media the fact that there are people in Wright County that are concerned and want to do something with the site. He said it seems as though no matter what is tried out there, it doesn’t seem to work. The letters provided an opportunity to bring this forth to the public that there are some Commissioners who do want to do something with the site. Russek felt this discussion was out of order as it takes the winning vote to bring a topic back for discussion, and Eichelberg was part of the losing vote. Eichelberg said he didn’t ask to bring the issue up, but he wanted to offer comment because of the letters. He felt he had that right as a Commissioner. Sawatzke said this was brought up as a result of two letters from other governmental units and apparently not from either of the losing parties to the vote. Sawatzke felt it would be out of order for Eichelberg to make a motion on the issue again and at this point, he would not deny Eichelberg the opportunity to make comments. Mattson said he spoke with Commissioner Ische last evening. He said that Ische indicated he had no intent of writing the letter until Eichelberg visited with him. He said the letter wouldn’t have been presented if Eichelberg hadn’t convinced Ische to do so. Mattson felt this was out of order based on the previous vote. Thelen said that after the meeting of March 24th, there were comments made about the Wright County Commissioners and their receptiveness to the problems that Mr. Hoeft brought up, as well as the City of Mayer. Thelen said in talking to people down there, they set the record straight. She felt it was good to note that these letters demonstrate there was considerable responsiveness on the part of the governments involved and that was worth putting into the record. She said Russek felt that this proposal would not bring in enough money, however, she did not feel the County should pass on any money in these tough, economic times. The RW Farms proposal would include two full-time jobs, three part-time jobs, and eight seasonal workers. Thelen questioned whether people would be interested in reconsidering the proposal given the comments from the City of Mayer and the Carver County Commissioner. She felt the process may have gotten away from itself and referenced the time spent in meetings and negotiations. At the very end, the County voted against the proposal. She did not feel there was an opportunity for the other side to present their arguments. Thelen understood the County’s policy that one of those voting in the majority needs to bring forward a motion to reconsider an issue, so she will go along with that. But, following Parliamentary procedure, anyone can ask to reconsider a motion. She felt it was probably a moot point without a change in temperament. Thelen said it was good that the letters were received reflecting that RW Farms is reputable. The issue was not the smell of the compost from yard waste but food waste. The problem was taken care of and they are award winners. In Carver County, the City and County were both responsive and there were numerous opportunities for citizens to come forward. She did not feel this was a good reason for voting it down but understood people had other reasons. Sawatzke felt RW Farms may have been surprised in having their proposal turned down. Sawatzke’s answer to that was that the system worked, that five Commissioners waited to make a decision until all the information was presented. The couple month process included the proposal by RW Farms, review by the Ways & Means Committee, the creation of a contract, and citizen input. Sawatzke felt the Board waited until the end to make a decision. After hearing all sides, three Board members felt one way and two felt the other. In reference to those who don’t feel anything is happening at the Compost Facility, Sawatzke said there are many recycling options at the Facility. These include the ability to recycle newspaper, cardboard, steel, cans, glass, plastics, paint, scrap metals, household hazardous waste, and lawn, garden and organic wastes. Sawatzke questioned whether there would be one thing that a Wright County citizen could do through the proposal that can’t be done now. Thelen responded that through the proposal, employment (full-time, part-time and seasonal) would be offered. Her understanding is that Planning & Zoning wanted an additional employee at the site. The proposal would pay for that employee. Sawatzke asked what would be gained aside from employment. Eichelberg responded it would provide convenience to the public who could utilize the site five days a week, where right now the hours offered are Tuesdays, Thursdays and one Saturday per month. Thelen did not feel that the public had the opportunity to speak on the subject. The public comment received was one sided and she did not feel the opportunity had been provided to those who supported the proposal. Sawatzke said the Board’s discussion on this was lengthy and that they called for public input. Russek moved to approve Consent Item A4, seconded by Eichelberg. It was clarified that the motion is acknowledging the letters received from the City of Mayer and Carver County. Mattson said he would vote against the motion due to the way the letters were requested. He did not feel the letters would have been presented if they had not been requested. Eichelberg said that those opposing the proposal did the same and brought in a person from Carver County to speak. That person would not have come in either if the group opposing the proposal wouldn’t have requested that person to do so. Eichelberg pointed out that this person was also not forthright on all of the information presented to the County Board. Thelen said she was curious about the process. If there is a situation where a Commissioner is talking with someone and the person says they will write a letter, she asked whether that was unethical. Sawatzke was not sure. The motion carried 4-1 with Mattson casting the nay vote.
Bob Hiivala, Auditor/Treasurer, referenced a claim on Page 6, Dick Mattson ($33.00) for mileage. The claim is coded to the Assessor’s Office and will be changed to the County Board. Russek reference a claim on Page 24, General Office Products ($6,297.68) for chairs, coded to Site Improvements. He understood these chairs are for the Jail/LEC and thought they should be coded to Bond Proceeds, Furniture & Equipment. Sawatzke said the claim to M-R Sign Company, Inc. ($34.22) on Page 26 should also be coded to the FF&E line item as well. Hiivala explained that he reviewed the coding of expenditures. He said it should appropriately be under Furniture and Equipment but that line item is under Capital Outlay. This will be coded as furniture and equipment under fixed assets. On the claims listing they should be coded to 6621. It is coming out of 34-160 which is the Capital Projects Bond Fund. Hiivala said those claims will be moved to the 6621 line item. Russek moved to approve the claims as listed in the abstract, subject to audit, with the corrections as noted. The motion was seconded by Eichelberg. Thelen questioned whether the $100,000 earnest money from the DNR is reflected. Hiivala said this will be reflected in the budget reports he will distribute. Hiivala explained that the Capital Projects Fund includes the Rollover, Equipment Note, the Bond Proceeds, and the Recorder’s Compliance Fund. He said the $100,000 will be returned to the Capital Projects Rollover Fund. Mattson referenced Page 12, Wolf Protective Agency Inc. ($101.41) for services to guard prisoners while at the hospital. He asked whether there is a transportation bill involved. Sheriff Miller said the prisoners are transported by the Sheriff Department. The motion carried 5-0.
Marc Mattice, Parks Administrator, presented a draft resolution in support of the 2010 LCCMR Funding Application for the Bertram Chain of Lakes Project. This funding is an allocation from the Environmental Trust Fund accumulated through proceeds from lottery tickets. Mattson questioned the County match required. Mattice said that they are trying to obtain $8-$9 million in grants. He felt it could be a 50/50 match but it is dependent on the grant. LCCMR can place their own grant stipulations, which could be a 40%-50% local match. Sawatzke said that if it is a 50% match, there is the ability to use 25% County funding, 25% City funding, and 50% State funding. When property was purchased previously for the Bertram Chain of Lakes Project, the split was 1/3, 1/3, 1/3 between the State, County and City of Monticello. The County is not proposing that split this time. The County has invested $1.2 million thus far. The hope is to get $9 million from the State leaving the County and City each with $5.75 million. Mattice said the split would be dependent on what type of grant is received, but he projected it would be more of a 50/50 split. The grant application is for $6.8 million in funding. Sawatzke questioned why the application does not request more, possibly $9 million. Mattice said the first application with LCCMR requested $8 million. LCCMR is aware the County has $1.2 million available. Sawatzke understood this reasoning but said the $9 million figure has been used when discussing the project with various groups and the State. He asked Mattice to give more thought to what figure should be used on the grant application. Mattice said he would, and he possibly will change the amount to $7.8 million which is consistent with the Task Force. Russek asked where the funding will come from for the County’s share. Mattice said there would be a few years to draw the amount. There has also been discussion about bonding. Sawatzke referenced the $1 million received previously from LCCMR and questioned what could be expected this time. Mattice said the $1 million is a very large grant from the LCCMR for one project. There is typically $22-$23 million in the Environmental Trust Fund. The $1 million grant is the largest that anyone received at that time. Sawatzke said the County is trying to obtain enough money to obtain one more parcel. Mattson questioned the County’s liability if the grant is received. Mattice responded that the County Board would have to pass a motion to sign the grant agreement. Eichelberg moved to adopt Resolution #09-19, seconded by Thelen, carried 4-1 with Mattson casting the nay vote. Russek said he is only going along with this as long as the County does not have to come up with the money. There is still an option not to do it. He was unsure whether the County could find that kind of money.
Barb Chaffee, CEO of the Central MN Jobs & Training Services, presented the Annual Report. CMJTS serves an 11-County area including Wright County. Information was presented on the annual audit which was an unqualified audit (meaning the best that can be attained). Data was provided in the packet and Chaffee elaborated on how the current economy is impacting the Agency. Central MN has long been the fastest growing region of the State. The counties located closest to the Twin Cities metro area saw the largest population growth. Growth has slowed some in the past few years and a wave of foreclosures and job cuts are now affecting the area. Because of the strong demographic and economic growth, Central Minnesota may be better positioned to deal with the changes. Chaffee said CMJTS will receive some stimulus money. Workforce Title 1B Development Funding will receive $652,794, Dislocated Worker will receive $1.7 million, and Youth will receive $1.6 million. Funding is based on a formula and the CMJTS receives the first or second highest amount because of the proximity to the metro area and the increased number of youth. Stimulus funds have requirements, one of them being that the money is expended from May to September of 2009. Chaffee announced the CMJTS 25th Anniversary Celebration being held at various locations the week of May 4th. Tony Thoman, Central Region Manager, provided an overview of the dislocated worker success stories highlighted in their report. He encouraged Board members to contact Cameron Macht, Regional Analyst, with any questions on data provided. Thoman said Wright County was the 3rd fastest growing county from 2000-2007 and includes a population with varied age groups. The number of home sales in Wright County dropped 26.7% from 2006-2007 while the number of foreclosures jumped almost 60% from 2007-2008. Many Wright County residents commute, with only 35% of Wright County residents working within the County. The unemployment rate in Wright County was 10.8% as of January 2009 and 11.1 as of February 2009. Chaffee said that those being laid off include baby boomers, age 50 or older, who have held jobs for 25 years and never felt they would get laid off. She cited some of the recent layoffs including larger companies. Chaffee understands the recession will hit bottom in the Fall and may stay there for some time. Normally, the trend is for the economy to get better after hitting bottom. Eichelberg commended Chaffee and the staff of the CMJTS. He added that no levy dollars are put toward the CMJTS.
Wayne Fingalson, Highway Engineer, said bids were received on 4-07-09 for the Overlay Contract #0901 (SAP 86-617-11, SAP 86-630-20, CP 86-8-092, CP 86-32-092, CP 86-139-092). Fingalson distributed information reflecting the bids received along with a spreadsheet outlining the impact of awarding the bid to Knife River for $2,882,347.38 (low bid). The bids include two alternates. Alternate 1 is the East Maple Lake Access and Alternate 2 is the Waverly Truck Station Lot. The spreadsheet outlines projects and potential funding sources (local or State aid). Depending on the funding source, the projected local savings could be $288,881 and State Aid savings could be $292,833. The Parks Administrator recommends proceeding with Alternate 1. Alternate 2, the Waverly Truck Station Lot, was a recommended project by the Public Works Labor/Management Committee because of poor blacktop conditions. CSAH 8 is being improved which resulted in a good price for the lot. Fingalson recommended awarding the bid to Knife River at the bid price of $2,882,347.38 to include both alternates. Richard Norman, County Coordinator, questioned the savings the County will realize on CR 139. Fingalson explained that Hennepin County is paying for half of the local share costs for the project. Wright and Hennepin Counties previously negotiated a Cooperative Agreement whereby Hennepin County reimburses Wright for the maintenance of the County Line Road and CR 17. Russek moved to award the contract to Knife River for $2,882,237.38 including both Alternate bids, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0.
Bids were received and opened at the 4-08-09 Ways & Means Committee Meeting. At today’s County Board Meeting, Thelen moved to adopt the following recommendations as presented by Fingalson. The motion was seconded by Russek and carried 5-0:
Corrugated Steel Pipe Culverts & Metal End Sections
Firm Name; Bid Bond; Bid Amount
Contech Construction Products; Yes; $57,003.75
Johnson-Fargo Culvert Co.; Yes; $90,950.65
Recommendation: Award to low bidder, Contech Construction Products
Sealcoating
Firm Name; Bid Bond; Bid Amount
Astech Corp.; Yes; $283,173.81
Caldwell Asphalt Co.; Yes; $309,878.96
Pearson Bros.; Yes; $353,159.96
Allied Blacktop; Yes; $394,116.17
Recommendation: Award to Astech Corp. at bid amount of $283,173.81.
Note: Silver Creek Township portion of this bid is $73,438.38, which yields $209,735.43 for the Wright County portion. The sealcoating budget is $242,000 for 2009.
Micro-Surfacing
Firm Name; Bid Bond; Bid Amount
Astech Corp.; Yes; $180,069.98
Recommendation: Award to Astech Corp. at Bid Amount of $180,069.98.
Pavement Markings
Firm Name; Bid Bond; Addendum; Yellow; White; Bid Amount
Traffic Marking Service; Yes; Yes; $9.00/gal; $9.43/gal; $231,360.00
AAA Striping; Yes; Yes; $10.33/gal; $10.00/gal; $242,970.00
Recommendation: Award to Low Bidder, Traffic Marking Service, Inc.
Equipment Rental
The following bids were received:
18 CY Scraper/hr. –
Terning Excavating; $150.00; 9520 JD (450 hp) 19 CY Pull Scraper
Dozer/hr. –
Deno’s Excavating; $70.00; ’77 Fiat Allis
Terning Excavating; $110.00; 700 H JD
Rubber Tired Tractor Mounted Backhoe/hr. –
Ralph Kotilinek Exc.; $90.00; 416-B CAT Dig More ext. 18’ dig depth
Terning Excavating; $90.00; 555 Ford
Hydraulic Excavator or Large Backhoe/hr. –
Keith Wurm Const.; $115.00; 2000 JD 110 Exc
Deno’s Excavating; $100.00; ’77 690B JD
Ralph Kotilinek Exc.; $120.00; Hitachi 160 LC 37,000# machine, 1-1/2 CY Demo Thumb
Terning Equipment; $110.00; 312 CAT w/thumb
Self-Propelled Pneu Tired Roller/hr –
Ralph Kotilinek Exc.; $70.00; 54” Ingersoll-Rand SD-40D, Smooth or Pad Foot Drum
4 CY Front End Loader (4 WD pneu. tired)-/hr. –
Keith Wurm Const.; $80.00; JD Front End, 2-1/2 Bucket
Deno’s Excavating; $70.00; ’80 644B JD – 3cy
Motor Grader/hr. –
Terning Excavating; $90.00; 740A Champion
Crawler Type Loader (3 CY)/hr. –
Ralph Kotilinek Exc.; $120.00; CAT 953C 2.5 CY Crawler Loader
1/2 CY Skid Loader (#1650 life capacity)/hr. –
Keith Wurm Const.; $70.00; Case 1845 Skid Loader
Deno’s Excavating; $70.00
10 CY Truck/hr –
Keith Wurm Const.; $65.00; 1985 Ford Dump
Ralph Kotilinek Exc.; $70.00; 2 Tri-axle 12 CY capacity
10 CY Truck w/snowplow & wing –
Ralph Kotilinek Exc.; $65.00; Tri-axle 12 CY capacity
Self-Propelled Pickup Sweeper/hr –
T& S Trucking; $70.00; ’94 Elgin Pelican
Trax-cavator/hr –
Ralph Kotilinek Exc.; $120.00; CAT 953C 2.5 CY Trax
247B Rubber Track Loader
Ralph Kotilinek Exc.; $90.00
1950# Lift Capacity 9’ Dump
Recommendation: Accept all Equipment Rental Bids.
Sand & Rock ($/Ton)
Firm name; FA-1; Class 5; Washed; 3/4“ Rock; Riprap Rock
Annandale Rock Products; $3.30; $4.70; $10.95; $39.00
Barton Sand & Gravel; No Bid; $5.65; $17.30; No Bid
Knife River; No Bid; $5.90; $16.35; $30.00
Johnson Materials, Inc.; $3.25; $4.75; $12.85; $25.00
Recommendation:
Accept All Bids For Class 5.
Award Contract for FA-1 to Annandale Rock Products and Johnson Materials, Inc.
Award Contract for Washed 3/4” Rock to Annandale Rock Products for $10.95/ton.
Award Contract for Riprap to Johnson Materials, Inc., for $25.00/ton.
Plant-Mixed Bituminous Mixture Seasonal Bid ($/ton).
Note: 1st price is per ton unit price; 2nd price is 100+ ton/day unit price
*Knife River
Bid Bond: Yes; Item 1 LV3: $48.30; Item 2 LV4: $50.90; Item 3 Fine Mix; $52.50
Item 1 LV3: $47.30; Item 2 LV4: $49.90; Item 3 Fine Mix: $51.50
*Prices shown are for Crow River site in Greenfield. Prices for Naaktgeboren Pit are: LV3 $47.00, LV4 $49.60, Fine $51.25
Mid-Minnesota Hot Mix
Bid Bond: $250; Item 1 LV3: $45.17; Item 2 LV4: $45.17; Item 3 Fine Mix: $75.00
Item 1 LV3: $44.20; Item 2 LV4: $44.20; Item 3 Fine Mix: $51.00
Commercial Asphalt
Bid Bond: $250; Item 1 LV3: $46.40; Item 2 LV4: $48.28; Item 3 Fine Mix: $46.95
Item 1 LV3:$45.40; Item 2 LV4: $47.25; Item 3 Fine Mix: $45.95
Recommendation: Accept all bids received.
(End of Seasonal Requirement Contract Bids)
Deb Swanson, Human Services Developmental Disabilities Supervisor, said a Wright County Autism Task Force is being formed along with the State’s Task Force that is being appointed by the Governor. The Wright County Autism Task Force is being created to bring expertise into dealing with this increased population. The Wright County Autism Task Force will hold a public forum on 5-04-09 from 3:30-7:00 P.M. at the Buffalo Community Middle School. The group is being expanded to create more awareness of Autism and to provide more services for parents.
Commissioner Mattson read the following proclamation:
WHEREAS, Autism is the fastest growing developmental disability in the United States today; and
WHEREAS, 1 in 150 children are being diagnosed with Autism; and
WHEREAS, in Minnesota, 1 in 81 children are being diagnosed at a rate of one child every 21 minutes; and
WHEREAS, the annual cost of meeting the needs of this growing population is $90 billion; and
WHEREAS, the ten-year estimated cost of meeting the needs of this population is $200-$400 billion; and
WHEREAS, early intervention services can reduce lifelong care costs by more than 60%; and
WHEREAS, April is designated as Autism Awareness month;
NOW, THEREFORE, the Wright County Partners for Autism Awareness and Intervention Readiness (PAAIR) Group is formed with the aim of creating ways to support and meet the needs of this growing population of Wright County residents.
(End of Proclamation)
Norman said that almost daily, information is received from NACo about Federal Stimulus Package funding. It is hard to stay on top of what is available and many grants have a short time frame in which to apply (including filling out the grant, holding the necessary public meetings to meet Federal requirements, and submittal). Norman presented a MN Department of Public Safety Office of Justice Programs Grant for Local Government. Local jurisdictions in Minnesota are receiving a total of $11 million in direct funding from the US Department of Justice Byrne/JAG Program. The grant can be used for law enforcement programs, prosecution and court programs, prevention and education programs, corrections and community corrections programs, drug treatment and enforcement programs, planning, evaluation and technology improvement efforts and crime victim and witness programs. Norman said Wright County could receive an award of up to $50,500. There is an application deadline of 5-18-09. The funds, if received, must be expended within four years of the grant acceptance and a small percentage of the grant can be used toward administering the grant. The application process must include provisions for public comment. Norman said his intent is to meet with those involved in the criminal justice system to determine if the funds can be used to meet some of their needs. Sheriff Gary Miller said the grant funding formula is based on the crime rate and the number of people served. Wright County serves so many people through city contracts that it may be one of the larger awards in the State. Miller felt the County should take the opportunity to express an interest in the grant. He supported a meeting with those involved in the criminal justice system. Miller said a short coming is that Wright County does not have a person designated for grant writing. Many grant applications include a lot of information and have complex requirements. Norman said that Lee Kelly, Special Projects Administrator, is currently working on energy conservation grants. Kelly is scheduled to attend a NACo Webinar on how to apply for grants. That specific grant is for about $450,000. After further discussion, Thelen moved to direct staff to pursue this grant opportunity and to bring back a recommendation to the County Board. The motion was seconded by Russek and carried 5-0.
An Owner’s Committee Meeting was held on 4-07-09. At today’s County Board Meeting, the following corrections were made to the minutes: Page 1, Item BII, Records Documents, last paragraph, sentence should read, “The Committee unanimously agreed to allow Hatfield to make a recommendation on whether to pursue this service once he has a chance to review the project’s close-out documents” (Sawatzke). Sawatzke stated that the Owner’s Committee will meet again on 5-05-09 at the Jail/LEC which will include a tour of the Jail. Sawatzke felt that there may need to be one more Owner’s Committee Meeting after that, and the Committee may then be disbanded. Russek moved to approve the minutes, as corrected, and the recommendations, seconded by Thelen, carried 5-0:
Torfin stated that he would like to add these items: E. FF&E, F. Site Improvement, G. DOC Licensing, and H. Inmate Move Update. Buikema stated that he would like to add Agenda item B2. Records Documents.
A. A&P.
1. PROJECT UPDATE.
No update.
B. KKE ARCHITECTS.
I. PROJECT UPDATE.
Buikema stated that he has nothing to report.
II. RECORDS DOCUMENTS.
Buikema stated that he informed the Committee at the 3-24-09 Owner’s Meeting that KKE could provide an optional service of project records documents. He stated that he received a proposal from his consultants for the Committee’s consideration. Buikema distributed the attached proposal, dated 4-07-09. He stated that each contractor marked up their set of construction drawings each time they made a change over the course of the project. These drawings would be scanned and turned over to the County for use in maintenance and future alterations to the buildings. Hayes asked if Hatfield has received the close-out documents from A&P. Buikema stated that he was not sure. Hayes asked Buikema if the County could purchase this service anytime in the future if it did not take advantage of the service at this time. Buikema stated that this is an optional service that could be purchased at any time. Hayes stated that he would recommend having Brad Hatfield review the close-out documentation from A&P and make the determination whether to pursue purchase of KKE’s service. Hatfield has a file cabinet in his office that will be used to store all building and construction related items. The Committee unanimously agreed to allow Hatfield to make a recommendation on whether to pursue this service once he has a chance to review the project’s close-out documents.
C. DISCUSSION OF BOND PROCEED BALANCES (SAWATZKE).
Hiivala distributed a packet (see attached) entitled “Jail/LEC Project Summary”. He stated that in December, 2007, the County issued the 2007A Jail/LEC bonds in the amount of $53,372,071.26. The handout provides a breakdown of how the bond proceeds were to be budgeted, the anticipated interest amount, and a breakdown of how the construction fund was allocated to the following categories: construction, architect/engineer, communications, furniture/equipment, site development, and contingency costs. He noted that he received his data from Bill Swing, Owner’s Committee Minutes, and the Probable Project/Scope Cost worksheet from A&P and KKE. The cover sheet of the packet shows “To Date Figures” that demonstrate, on a cash basis, how the funds were spent. According to the 3-24-09 Owner’s Committee Minutes, the project is billed at 99% completion. The project will come in under budget an estimated $1.8 million. He noted that this could be used to offset additional costs or used toward debt service. He noted that there was nearly $1.3 million in interest received on the bonds. He stated that this additional interest income is because the County did not spend the money as fast as it had anticipated. He stated that he would have to rebate some of the investment income to the IRS due to arbitrage. Norman asked if Hiivala’s projections include the anticipated sales tax rebate on the materials portion of the Jail portion of the project. Hiivala stated no. Sawatzke asked who would pursue the sales tax rebate. Norman stated that Tara Blotske, A&P, would pursue the rebate after the retainage amounts have been paid out to contractors. Norman asked if the remaining project dollars of $1.8 million had to be spent within a certain timeframe of the bond issuance to avoid further arbitrage. Hiivala stated that the County would have a 24-month spend down requirement to avoid arbitrage. The County will not meet this requirement and the County will be subject to additional arbitrage. Sawatzke stated that Hiivala’s news is good news and was what the Committee was anticipating. Hayes stated that part of the construction savings was due to the Sheriffs Department willingness to reuse $250,000 of modular equipment. The new furniture was purchased via State contract which realized an additional 30% savings. Sawatzke commended Hayes for his work on this project. Sawatzke asked Hiivala if A&P’s payments were based on their original contract amount. Hiivala stated yes. He noted that A&P would come in under their budgeted amount for Project Reimbursables.
D. ARAMARK INVOICE FOR OPEN HOUSE CATERING, $705.00, FOOD & BEVERAGES (TORFIN).
Torfin stated that he received an invoice from Aramark for the cookies, coffee, and lemonade served at the 3-21-09 Open House. The total for the product was $705. Aramark did not charge for their labor. This was agreed to be paid out of contingency funds. He stated that he would forward this invoice to A&P. Torfin further commented that Aramark went above and beyond in providing for the Open House and in making the move flawless. He noted that Aramark had food service managers, their division and district managers, food service director from Sherburne and Yellow Medicine Counties, and many others to help with the move. They rented a truck and moved their own resources. He commended Aramark for doing such a nice job. Hayes proposed that Torfin draft a letter of commendation to Aramark, to be signed by the Committee Chairman. RECOMMEDATION: Forward Aramark invoice to A&P to be paid out of the contingency fund, and draft letter to Aramark to be signed by Committee Chairman.
E. FF&E.
Torfin stated that he would like to purchase 12 wash racks for the dish machines, and two exam stools for the physicians. He has a proposal for eight wash racks for $146, is seeking pricing for four wash racks that hold trays, and has a purchase order for stools for $204. He asked if the Committee would authorize payment of these items out of FF&E.
RECOMMENDATION: Authorize purchase of 12 wash racks and two exam stools.
F. SITE IMPROVEMENTS.
Torfin stated that some remodeling has to occur in the Government Center as a result of moving over the Jail. He stated that he received an invoice from Excel Systems to recable the elevator for telephone access. The invoice amount is for $837.70 and requests that the Committee authorize payment out of the Budget 100, Site Improvements line item. RECOMMEDNATION: Authorize payment of invoice from Excel Systems for $837.70 out of Budget 100, Site Improvements line item.
Torfin notified the Committee that there would be other invoices for miscellaneous repairs: Russell Security for relocate some monitors, Blaine Lock will provide services to remove locks so that they can be catalogued and stored as replacements at the new Jail/LEC. Ernst Construction is building a wall and making repairs to a ceiling. Brothers Fire Protection has moved a sprinkler head as a result of the new wall.
G. D.O.C. LICENSING.
Torfin stated they required D.O.C. licensing prior to occupying the new Jail on 4-04-09. The occupancy and licensing was approved on 4-03-09 for 176 inmates. The hard copy version of the license is in the mail.
H. INMATE MOVE.
Torfin announced that the inmate move on 4-04-09 went very well. All of the inmates, including 23 that were held at Sherburne County, were relocated to the new Jail by noon. Two vans and a couple of squad cars made the transition. He stated that because the Jail is now occupied, a few glitches have been discovered in the inmate phone service, equipment problems, lock issues, and plumbing issues. He commended the nine Explorer Scouts who assisted in the move. They moved mattresses, pillows, and equipment. Torfin expressed his appreciation for their excellent work. Sawatzke asked when the County Board and Committee could tour the new Jail/LEC now that the facility is nearly fully operational. He stated that the County Board has expressed interest in seeing how the staff operates the new building. Norman proposed that the next Owner’s Committee meet on 5-05-09 be held at the Jail/LEC, with a tour to follow. It was agreed that pay applications and purchases could be brought to the County Board for approval until the Owner’s Committee meets again on 5-05-09. Torfin still has the authority to approve change orders that are valued at less than $5,000.00.
(End of 4-07-09 Owner’s Committee Minutes)
A Personnel Committee Meeting was held on 4-08-09. At today’s County Board Meeting, Eichelberg moved to approve the minutes and recommendations, seconded by Thelen. Mattson referenced the bank of cell phones that used to be at the Human Services Center and questioned whether that was still in existence or whether everyone now has their own cell phone. Sawatzke said he asked that question but it is unclear if the bank of cell phones still exists. The Committee directed staff to investigate the issue further to include information on who has cell phones, blackberries, and whether the employees’ jobs require these technologies. The motion carried 5-0:
TELECOMMUTING PILOT PROGRAM.
Mleziva distributed the “Wright County Human Services Telecommuting Guidelines”, dated 4-08-09. This version includes changes that were recommended by Norman, which are highlighted in yellow on pages 3, 4, and 7. Brown stated that she also reviewed the guidelines and solicited a few changes. She proposed removing the third bulleted item on page 3 of the Guidelines. She stated that this statement conflicts with short-term disability rules. Brown noted that the wording on page 7, Family Interaction, is too vague. Norman stated that the language should be more specific. There is a concern regarding telecommuters who work at home and how they will manage dependent care. Mleziva stated that the guidelines provided by Olmsted County were more specific regarding this topic by stating that the telecommuter would be responsible for outside daycare. DeMars stated that some Social Workers have evening appointments, so the question is whether to mandate evening daycare. Sawatzke stated that he would assume that clients would have the expectation that staff works from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. since that is when the Government Center is open. Mleziva stated that this is the expectation staff would also have. However, there are some advantages so telecommuting in that staff could accommodate a night appointment to meet with a client. There is flexibility within the telecommuting model. Brown identified a concern she has regarding a performance rating characteristic in the Compatibility Survey on page 10. She stated that the wording for item #5 is vague. The words “consistently at” should be defined. Norman questioned whether the “successful” rating was adequate. Mleziva stated that according to the Social Worker contract, the wording requires that a Social Worker must receive three years of a “superior” rating prior to becoming a Senior Social Worker. He proposed that the wording of the survey should correlate with the contract language. Norman proposed changing the wording of #5 to read, “Performance is consistently at or above the “superior” rating over at least the two previous review periods.” Swing stated that the success of the pilot program is to target quality employees. Norman stated that he would like to receive a final copy of the guidelines for Frank Madden’s office to review for labor issues, and the collective bargaining agreement. He stated that it might take Madden up to thirty days to review the document. Swing commented that the pilot timeframe is from July 1st to June 30th. He stated that there would be review check points throughout the pilot program. If the program or employee is not working, termination of the program would occur. Sawatzke asked if there would be office space available to the telecommuter for necessary office visits and meetings. Mleziva stated that page 3, Maintaining Office Culture, addresses this topic. Eichelberg stated that it is his understanding that a cubicle space would be provided for 3-5 telecommuters to share. Mleziva stated that during the pilot program, the telecommuter would have their own laptop, so that in the event that they are required to come into the office, they can bring the laptop in with them, and make use of a conference room. They would not need cubicle space. DeMars stated that they have yet to figure out how to store paper case files. He stated that the purpose of the pilot program is to figure out the details. Norman proposed changing the wording at the bottom of page 3 to eliminate the wording –“perhaps calling to chat with a colleague during lunch periodically”. The Committee agreed with the change of language. Sawatzke stated that the Guidelines mostly focus on telecommuting. He thought that the last meeting addressed the mobile worksite and is surprised to see that these Guidelines do not address the mobile office concept. Swing stated that the mobile office concept has been in place for quite some time. He stated that the first priority is to plan for secure remote access. DeMars commented that the mobile office concept includes a home office concept. Swing distributed a “Start Up Costs” worksheet on the fixed costs, as well as the ongoing yearly expenses the County could anticipate to pay. He estimated that it could cost approximately $749 to set the employee up with supplies, computer, and office equipment. A discussion ensued on whether the employee should supply their own office equipment. Norman explained that the County wants to be assured that the employee is using ergonomically correct equipment as the employee is still on the County’s Workers Compensation Plan. Norman stated that a home visit would be performed prior to the telecommuting arrangement to determine that the set-up is adequate. Norman referenced that page 6, Furnishings/Ergonomics, addresses this topic. Sawatzke noted that according to the worksheet, the ink cartridges are expensive and how this could be taken advantage of by an individual. Norman stated that the policy expectation would be to restrict the use of County supplies and equipment to work related business. DeMars distributed a “Services Unit Time Report” spreadsheet to demonstrate how the Human Services Department can measure whether an employee’s productivity is meeting expectations. He stated that staff is required to record their time in 15 minute increments. This report is detailed, and allows supervisors to monitor productivity. RECOMMENDATION: Make changes to the Guidelines and return for further discussion on 5-13-09.
POLICY RE: USE OF BLACKBERRIES.
Kelly stated that he has discovered how useful and beneficial the Blackberry has been for him. He is able to conduct business on his Blackberry whether he is in Court, or out of the office. The phone allows him to communicate with the Sheriffs Office and the Judges, as well as check his County emails. The Blackberry is likened to a computer in a phone. He stated that he has purchased seven Blackberries for a few of his Attorneys via drug forfeiture money. The data portion of the account is billed to the County. The Attorneys do not have voice plans on their Blackberries. A few of the Attorneys have expressed interest in obtaining voice plans and reimbursing the County for the service. He proposed a plan by stating that Cindy Hohl would track reimbursement of the voice accounts from the employees and forward to Bob Hiivala’s office. Sawatzke asked about the costs associated with the purchase of a Blackberry device and, the monthly fee for the data and voice plans. Swing stated that the phones cost approximately $100, the data portion is approximately $40, and the voice plan varies depending on the plan. Sawatzke stated that he has concerns regarding a law that does not allow government owned equipment to be used to conduct personal business. Sawatzke stated that he would be interested in seeing the Attorney General’s opinion regarding this issue. Norman stated that this was originally referred to this Committee by Kelly, yet, if a policy is created today, it should be for all department-owned Blackberries. Swing stated that his Department inventoried the number of Blackberry devices that are configured to work with the County’s server. There are 40 Blackberry devices (see attached spreadsheet). Swing stated that during an inventory of cell phones, they found that there were 337 devices County-wide, several with different cell phone plans and vendors. Swing stated that it concerns him that the County is not managing its cell phones better. He stated that he would be in favor of having one cell phone carrier to manage the entire County. By default, the County has a lot of its I.T. equipment and devices operated by Sprint/Nextel. Sprint has proposed that the County could save approximately $14,000 annually by using one carrier. Sawatzke asked how much the County spends in cell phone usage per month. Swing stated that the County spends $9,000/month. Having one carrier could potentially save the County 14% on its annual cell phone expenditure. Nelson stated that the multiple carriers, as seen on the spreadsheet, are because some of the Blackberries were purchased by the individual so they have their own plan. The Blackberries listed on the spreadsheet are all connected into the County’s server. Swing stated that the policy should address the liability of the unpaid balance if the employee defaults on their service plan. Hiivala stated that to create a County-wide policy allowing employees to reimburse the County for voice/data plans, could prove to be an accounting nightmare for his Department. Sawatzke stated that he would be in favor of conducting a departmental survey to determine who has a County-funded cell phone, how they are used, and why the employee has one. Hiivala stated that he thought this was appropriate. Hiivala distributed the “Olmsted County Cell Phone and Smart Device Stipend Policy” as a discussion point. He stated that they have a stipend arrangement that could potentially save the County money. Norman asked Swing and Hiivala if they have cost out a stipend system versus having one carrier for all departments. Sawatzke stated that the stipend amount could be based on the best base rate offered by one carrier. Kelly stated that his employees would be in favor of this. Sawatzke stated that in addressing a stipend plan, the Department Head should have to make their request at a committee meeting to determine an employee’s eligibility for the stipend. Kelly stated that he had only 3 or 4 employees that have inquired about a voice plan. Their current cell phone contract is coming up for renewal and in order to eliminate carrying two devices, they would like to have their voice plan on the Blackberry. Eichelberg asked if the voice plan would be a yearly contract with Sprint. Kelly stated that it was his understanding that it would be a month-to-month plan. Eichelberg stated that with a month-to-month plan, the contract could be canceled at anytime. Sawatzke stated that the Committee needs more time to evaluate this subject prior to creating a policy. Kelly inquired whether he could allow his employees to start a reimbursable voice plan via Sprint while the Committee ponders creating a department-wide policy regarding Blackberry usage. Swing stated that he and Hiivala could speak with Sprint about administrative issues regarding billing and account set-up. Kelly informed Swing that Sprint informed him that they will not bill the employees directly for their individual service. Nelson stated that she will speak with Gary Schultz, Sprint representative for the County, about split billing. RECOMMENDATION: Meet again on 5-13-09 to expand the discussion to all County-funded cell phones and authorize Kelly to set up voice plans for Blackberries that are to be reimbursed by his employees if Sprint can split-bill the employees.
(End of 4-08-09 Personnel Committee Minutes)
A Technology Committee Meeting was held on 4-08-09. At today’s County Board Meeting, the following changes were made: Page 3, Item II, 1st Recommendation should read, “No action recommended at this time relative to the survey” (Thelen); Page 3, Item II, last Recommendation, date should be changed to “4-14-09” (Norman). Thelen moved to approve the minutes and recommendations, as corrected, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0:
Swing presented an outline for today’s meeting (see attached). The purpose of today’s meeting is to review the alignment of the IT Department and how technology can assist Wright County in becoming more efficient. Swing stated that the IT Department is currently working under the Silo Approach, which enables the IT Department to meet departmental needs individually versus County wide. He feels that the Enterprise Approach would align the County better with the overall goals and objectives.
STRATEGIC PLANNING FOR TECHNOLOGY
Swing reviewed the current Technology Project Schedule and discussed ’07 and ’08 planning conclusions. SharePoint was accomplished in 2007 and was a very significant turn for the IT Department. In 2007 a series of interviews were conducted with department heads to discuss their technology needs. Consultants were hired in 2008 to review and analyze the data. The findings were summarized (see attached) to see if IT was in alignment with departmental goals. Currently IT works with one department at a time. Swing feels that individual departments are not aware of what IT is doing in other departments. Swing stated that basically the information reviewed reconfirms where the County is going technically. He stated that the County needs to follow the private sector and deliver more services via the County website. In order to make this happen, IT requested that a Lead Developer and a Network Analyst be added to the IT staff. Today, both of these positions remain vacant. Swing stated that in order to keep the County running smoothly he should not have to plead for personnel or funds to move forward. Adding additional staff would meet departmental needs with higher availability, eliminate redundancy to the County’s network, and increase efficiency. DeMars questioned the delay in hiring a Lead Developer. Swing replied that in 2007, the Board approved 1.5 persons to be hired in IT. At this time Swing feels the priority should be hiring a Network Analyst. He stated that the operation of the IT Department relies on the network and currently technicians are performing functions outside their normal duties. Norman stated that the job description was submitted to the County’s job evaluation consultant for review. Once the results are received, they may have to go to negotiations with the Union. Swing is concerned that employees are going to be burned out with the current work load. Jobe questioned what other positions need to be filled in IT. Swing stated that there is a .5 Office Assistant, full-time Lead Developer, and Network Analyst positions available. Jobe acknowledged the hard work IT continues to do. He feels that IT is on the right track by being able to do more from their Department versus traveling to each site. Swing stated that currently the risk is high in regards to something breaking down which would affect departments. Thelen has received positive feedback regarding the IT Department. She suggested getting letters of recommendation from departments on the need that additional help is required to keep everything running properly. Swing questioned what process IT should follow moving forward. He feels that there is an assumption by departments that IT will bring forth new developments to meet departmental needs. He would like departments to be more interactive with their needs than how things are currently being done. For example, Court Services presented information received from a vendor in regards to integrating systems. As a result Court Services and Human Services are currently working on work flow and system integration between their departments. Norman stated that some of what departments are asking for could be included in the Capital Improvement Plan. He stated that Lee Kelly has been working with departments and updating their plans which will be reviewed in May. Norman feels that communication is the key between the Capital Improvement planning process and IT. Nelson agreed and felt that it is a good idea to include current items going forward. It would be helpful to see the current list of items that are in the plan and see where gaps occur. Eichelberg commented that this information could be shared with other departments. DeMars stated that the Capital Improvement Plan is a five year plan and questioned if there will be a five year Technology Plan. Norman stated that strategically, five years is an appropriate time frame for review. He feels if an effort is undertaken to create a Strategic Plan for IT the process could run parallel with that implemented for the CIP. Jobe commented that things are constantly changing in the technology world. Nelson stated that the technology scope is usually three years max. Beyond three years, from a technology standpoint, items become a functional wish. Swing stated that a lot of business is being done via the internet. High availability is needed 24/7 in order to offer the best service to the public. He feels that over the next three years the County will have to perform intensive work on their web site as government strives for excellence. Swing stated that the City of Buffalo is building infrastructures that could be shared by the County and he feels a strategic plan is a good idea. Norman stated that planning amongst departments is a good thing in order to avoid duplicate processes, equipment, and to keep costs down. Norman stated that Kelly has a current spreadsheet dealing with the County’s CIP. Nelson suggested moving forward with department interviews and use it as an opportunity to kick off planning for next year. She also suggested establishing basic preliminary items for 2010 along with big budget items. RECOMMENDATION: Swing will meet with Lee Kelly to discuss the Capital Improvement planning process. IT will schedule department interviews.
PUBLIC INPUT VIA THE WEB SITE.
Thelen commented that the News and Press Release, “Give Your Input on Stearns County Budget Cuts” (see attached) was received in February, 2009. Currently she feels the article is irrelevant due to the limited staff available to review. Norman stated the County’s budget process is open to the public. This meeting does not have a big turnout which he feels affirms that the County is doing a good job. Swing suggested E-Subscription be available to the public. This would allow citizens to sign up and receive automatic updates on projects in and around Wright County via their email address. Examples would be the TH 55 Coalition and Property Taxes. Thelen feels that if the County wants public input, then the County needs to offer a place for the public to send responses too. Hayes stated that currently the web site offers a space for comments. This could be changed to include public responses as well, and be routed to individual departments for review. RECOMMENDATION: No action recommended at this time relative to the survey.
Swing presented a Resolution regarding the Wright County Broadband Infrastructure (see attached). The City of Monticello is requesting the Boards endorsement on an application for Federal Stimulus funds for the expansion of its ultra-high-speed broadband project “FibetNet Monticello.” Swing stated that the County will benefit from this as well. RECOMMEND: Add Resolution to 4-14-09 Board Agenda for approval. Resolution is endorsed by the Technology Committee.
(End of 4-08-09 Technology Committee Minutes)
The Technology Committee recommended the County Board review a resolution on Wright County Broadband Infrastructure. If adopted, the resolution would reflect the County Board’s endorsement of the City of Monticello’s application for Federal Stimulus Funds for the expansion of its ultra-high-speed broadband project “FiberNet Monticello” and endorse the ongoing exploration of opportunities involving broadband infrastructure initiatives and related benefits. Thelen moved to adopt Resolution #09-20, seconded by Eichelberg. The motion carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
A Technology Committee Of The Whole Meeting was held on 3-31-09. At today’s County Board Meeting, the following changes were made: Page 1, Others Present, change to “Mike Marketon” (Mattson) and “Robin Barfkneckt” (Sawatzke); Page 2, 4th paragraph, 1st sentence should read, “Mattson asked who built the MnDOT tower in Marysville Township.” (Mattson). Sawatzke referenced the second Committee recommendation relating to radio user fees. He said that it is for 2010 and will be reevaluated in 2011. The recommendation as worded in the minutes should not be changed. Russek moved to approve the minutes and recommendations, seconded by Eichelberg, carried 5-0:
DISCUSS OPERATIONAL COSTS, 800 MHz SYSTEM.
Swing stated that the Committee recessed on 2-25-09 until today to provide an update on American Tower’s annual 4% increase, feedback regarding sale of their towers, negotiated monthly lease amount, and discussion on what other counties are doing for chargeback expenses to their users. Mazzitello distributed a timeline of Motorola and Wright County project activities and responsibilities (see attached). He stated that according to the timeline, they are anticipating final acceptance of the project during the final week of December, 2009. He discussed the process for the Subscribers Fleet Map Development which is slated to begin 5-21-09. He stated that this is an extensive process that maps out the talk groups/channels for each Department. It is a complex matrix that balances the County’s use of the system with Sherburne County and MnDOT. Mazzitello stated that the fire chiefs have been very proactive and have assisted in the progress of the project. The Fire Departments will likely start receiving their radios next week, however, they will not be able to use them until the radios are programmed. The radios most likely will not be programmed until the rest of the County receives their radios. Then the users will be trained on the radios. Mazzitello updated the Committee regarding the costs of the ongoing maintenance of the 800 MHz system (see attached spreadsheet dated 3-31-09). American Towers was able to adjust their annual escalator from 4% down to 3.5%. The monthly lease amount was also reduced down to $1,740 instead of $2,175. This was done partly because the County was able to use smaller 4’ microwave dishes on the American Towers, and will place an 8’ dish on the MnDOT tower. The two towers owned by American Tower only hold one carrier: AT&T. American Tower does not require the County to pay a “hold” fee prior to the use of the towers in June, 2009. Mazzitello stated that the contract called for the County to pay for future tower upgrades. This language will be struck from the contract with American Tower. Swing stated that Motorola’s contract was forwarded to Brian Asleson, Assistant County Attorney, and Mark Nolan, Safety Director, for their review of the indemnification, risk management, and contract language. He stated that they would like to solicit approval of the American Tower contract contingent upon the approval of the contract language by Asleson and Nolan. Eichelberg asked if the escalator would be charged on the contract anniversary date. Mazzitello stated yes. Mazzitello explained that the initial contract is for five years, and grants the County three renewals. Sawatzke asked if there is an “out” clause within the contract. Mazzitello stated yes. Thelen asked for confirmation on whether this contract was fiscally a better deal as opposed to building a tower. Mazzitello explained that over a 20 year period, the County has the potential to save $200,000 if they were to build their own tower. However, unless the County wants to enter into the tower business, he would not recommend going this route. The savings is not worth the effort. RECOMMENDATION: Authorize signatures on the contract with American Tower contingent on approval of the contract language by Asleson and Nolan. Mattson asked who built the MnDOT tower in Marysville Township. Mazzitello stated that a developer from St. Cloud built the tower. Mattson asked if he had solicited a quote from them. Mazzitello stated no as he did not get the impression that the County wanted to pursue building a tower.
Mazzitello distributed a handout entitled “Current Estimates For Subscriber Based Allocation Of Costs” dated March, 2009. The handout lists the number of radios that will be County owned and those that will be operated by outside agencies. Mazzitello stated that those radios that were previously purchased via grant dollars, etc, are figured into the cost allocation figures. Using the 2011 cost estimate for operating the system, he generated a formula that determined that a cost allocation of $75/radio would generate a cost relief of approximately $45,525/year from participating agencies. To realize full cost relief by the non-County agencies, the County would have to charge back $146/radio. He then referred to another handout that summarized how other counties are addressing charge backs (see attached “Restatement Of Sample Cost Charge Back Allocations In ARMER System). Mazzitello recommended that the County reassess the impact of the system in a few years to determine if the County is re-cooping an adequate amount from outside agencies. A discussion occurred regarding how much to charge for user fees and who to charge. Van Lith stated that ambulance drivers use the 800 MHz system, yet the County cannot bill the State for their use. He also stated that some cities received grants to purchase their radios. Van Lith stated that he did not think it was fair to charge a “user fee” per radio unit. He stated that the tax payers’ dollars all go into the same fund. His position was that the system needs to be managed, and has an associated cost to do so, no matter how many users are on the system. He is in favor of taxpayers subsidizing the radio system, but to charge a “per unit” fee does not seem fair when the benefit is County-wide. He stated that when he answers fire and medical calls, the signal from his radio currently bounces off of Hennepin and Carver County towers. He stated that other counties would also bounce off of the County’s towers once operational, therefore, he does not think it is fair to charge a per unit user fee. Mazzitello stated that as part of the contract with the State, the County would need to assign a designated system manager. The position contains an entire suite of tasks and responsibilities: keeping track of inventory, unit radio ID addresses, creating control measures, managing the partnership between I.T. and Sheriff Departments, IP Address, programming radios, oversee the operation of the network, and participate in management meetings. Options include: designating a position within the County, contracting out to a radio vendor, or another county. He stated that at this point, this is an informational item for the Committee to consider. Sawatzke asked whether the system would be fully operational by January 1, 2010. Mazzitello stated yes. Sawatzke asked when the County would start realizing the full list of operational expenses. Mazzitello stated that the operational costs would occur one year after final acceptance of the project. The costs would begin approximately January, 2011. Sawatzke asked Mazzitello when the charge back fees should be assessed to the users. Mazzitello stated that due to Motorola’s one-year warranty, a fractional amount of the full maintenance cost for the first two years should be passed on to the users. Swing stated that between the years of 2011 through 2020, the annual ongoing maintenance costs would be $150-160,000. Sawatzke asked if Mazzitello is proposing not charging the users for services in 2009/2010. Mazzitello stated that the County would incur $44,700.00 of maintenance costs in 2009, $62,343.00 in 2010, and the Motorola warranty would cease in 2011, bringing the maintenance costs up to $150,661.05. Sawatzke asked the Committee members if they felt charging a user fee of $75 per unit was fair. He stated that he thought it was a good compromise based on what other counties are charging. Russek stated determining a “fair” way to charge back the use of the system would be impossible. He stated that the County is fronting a large portion of the cost. Eichelberg stated that he would be in favor of initially charging a $75/unit fee, and reevaluating this amount in 2011. Sawatzke stated that the County is paying for the infrastructure costs. He stated that it is his opinion that charging a user fee is fair. Mazzitello stated that he feels the County is smart in doing what Sherburne County is doing: reassessing the costs after the warranty period ceases. Sawatzke stated that more radios on the system could possibly reduce the user fee. RECOMMENDATION: Authorize charging a $75/radio fee to the users of the ARMER system and reevaluating the user fee after the end of the warranty period with Motorola. Swing stated that they would like to pursue the formation of a Working Committee that would meet monthly. The forum or round table discussion would involve issues, trends, and upgrades regarding the ARMER system. He proposed meeting after the County Board Meeting on the fourth Tuesday of every month. He stated that the group would have an inclusive participation consisting of representatives from I.T., Sheriff, and a County Board appointee. RECOMMENDATION: Endorse concept of a monthly committee meeting to begin on 4-21-09 and appoint Eichelberg as the County Board representative. The committee will meet at 1:30 p.m., the fourth Tuesday of each month.
(End of 3-31-09 Technology Committee Of The Whole Minutes)
A Ways & Means Committee Meeting was held on 4-08-09. At today’s County Board Meeting, Mattson moved to approve the minutes, seconded by Russek, carried 5-0:
BID OPENING-SEASONAL REQUIREMENTS.
Bids were closed at 9:00 a.m. Fingalson opened the bids for various seasonal categories. Highway staff will tally and present a summary and recommendation to the County Board at their 4-14-09 County Board Meeting.
(End of 4-08-09 Ways & Means Committee Minutes)
There will be no Owner’s Committee Meeting today.
Bills Approved
AECOM USA Inc.. $399.75
Allina Hospitals & Clinic 1,000.00
Allina Hospitals and Clinics Sp 752,22
American Messaging 764.10
Ameripride Linen and Apparel 361.78
AMI Imaging Systems Inc. 14,107.34
Ancom Technical Center 149.95
City Annandale 1,056.60
Anoka Co. - Medical Examin 79,310.25
APEC Industrial Sales & Serv 246.71
Apex Software 430.00
Aramark Correctional Services 5,752.48
Association of MN Counties 1,125.00
Astleford International 96,049.00
Auto Glass Center Inc. 236.63
Automatic Garage Door & Firepl 132.50
Joe Backes 315.70
Bear Graphics Inc. 465.96
Berg Bag Company 1,650.75
Breezy Point Resort Inc. 521.41
City Buffalo 731.86
Center Point Energy 701.40
Centra Sota Lake Region LLC 16,686.14
City Cokato 400.00
Community U Knited 100.00
Consulting Radiologists LTD 340.80
Corporate Payment Systems 335.90
Cottens’ Inc. 4,667.79
Dell Marketing LP 160.19
Dental Care Associates of Buf 370.00
Department of Public Safety 240.00
Design Electrical Contractors 2,077.95
Ecolab 606.78
Edens Group 140.00
Brianna Eggleston 205.14
Elk River Ford 25,087.75
Emergency Physicans Prof 524.25
Engineer Supply LLC 131.45
Excel Systems LLC 837.70
Farm-Rite Equipment Co. 659.15
Wayne Fingalson 642.86
Gale-Tec Engineering Inc. 11,834.70
GCS Service Inc. 634.60
General Office Products Co 6,297.68
Geocomm Inc. 4,000.00
Janet Gholson 119.90
Raymond Glunz 120.00
Going Under Dive Center 612.77
Grainger 1,317.19
Granite Electronics 420.10
Hennepin Co. Medical Center 107.64
Hennepin Faculty Associates 3,312.40
Hewlett Packard 3,289.79
Hillyard Inc - Minneapolis 565.71
Holiday 140.70
Identix Incorporated 23,224.50
Interstate Battery Systems 885.10
Robert James Co. Inc. 245.23
John’s Precision Machine 161.54
Junction Towing & Auto Repair 253.47
Klatt True Value Electric 135.27
Greg Kramber 113.45
Lakedale Communications 481.29
Lilia Lantto 180.00
LaPlant Demo Inc. 572.78
Carol Lostetter 100.00
L3 Communications Inc. 204.27
M-R Sign Company Inc. 366.57
Marco 353.72
Marco Inc. 920.16
Martin-McAllisters Consulting 400.00
McLeod County Treasurer 749.94
Menards - Buffalo 195.40
MN Alcohol Traffic Safety Assn. 650.00
MN Assn of Assessing Officers 1,200.00
MN Counties Computer Coop 5,690.20
MN Transportation Alliance 525.00
Morries Parts & Services Group 255.74
Motorola Inc. 1,049.71
Mumford Sanitation 129.87
Richard Norman 153.32
North American Salt Co. 8,268.01
Office Depot 1,808.37
Performance Office Papers 669.50
Photo 1 186.90
Powerplan OIB 1,060.10
Proven Force 643.76
Frank Ramacciotti 1,000.00
Reed Business Information 585.48
Reliable Restoration 16,521.00
Roof Spec Inc. 1,200.00
Ryan Chevrolet 1,497.54
Schneider Corporation 8,430.00
Sherburne Co. Probation Dep 160.00
SHI International Corp 143.78
Tammi Solarz 200.75
Specialty Turf & Ag 138.40
Stratus Technologies Ireland 3,061.73
T & M Towing and Snow Plow 181.05
T & S Trucking 11,357.50
Toms Towing Service 266.25
Waste Management - TC W 1,371.51
Watchguard Electronic Home 117.00
City Waverly 245.75
West Payment Center 823.16
Wolf Protective Agency Inc. 101.41
Wright Co. Auditor Treasurer 501.32
Wright County Human Services 250.00
Wright Hennepin Electric 2,992.51
45 Payments less than $100 1,936.46
Final total $398,164.19
The meeting adjourned at 11:00 A.M
Published in the Herald Journal May 4, 2009.


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