WRIGHT COUNTY BOARD MINUTES
MAY 24, 2011
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Sawatzke, Mattson, Russek, Thelen, and Eichelberg present.
Eichelberg moved to approve the 5-17-11 County Board Minutes, seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0.
Eichelberg moved to approve the Agenda as presented. The motion was seconded by Thelen and carried 5-0.
On a motion by Eichelberg, second by Mattson, all voted to approve the Consent Agenda:
1. Performance Appraisals: B. Asleson, Atty.; S. Bjore, J. Danner, S. Hoover, Sher./Corr.
2. Refer To Ways & Means Committee Discussion RE: Sheriff City Contracts For 2012-2013.
3. O/T Report, Periods Ending 4-29-11 & 5-13-11.
4. Approve Charitable Gambling Application Form LG220, Minnesota Rodeo Association, Silver Bullet Saddle Club Arena, 17363 Cty. Rd. 7, Clearwater MN 55320 (Clearwater Twp.).
At 9:05 A.M., Commissioner Russek said it was with great pleasure that he was able to present recognition certificates to employees who assisted on Easter weekend with securing the Human Services Center after a truck accident. Russek read the following Letter of Recognition:
Whereas, on April 23, 2011, an incident occurred whereby a truck crashed into the Human Services Center causing significant damage; and
Whereas, said incident occurred on a Saturday; and
Whereas, several County employees responded to the urgent situation by securing the building and protecting case files, documents and equipment; and
Whereas, their response is regarded as going above and beyond their job responsibilities, and is indicative of their level of dedication and professionalism;
Now Therefore Be It Resolved that the Wright County Board of Commissioners, does hereby, present a Certificate of Recognition of this 24th day of May, 2011.
Certificates were given to the following employees:
Building Care & Maintenance: Chuck Barthel, Bill Biros, Bob Burns, Al Buskey, Dorene Chapman, Jeff Dinius, Brad Hatfield, Annette Pulvermacher
Human Services: Karen Bautch, Jan Bjore, Larry DeMars, Marian Elkerton, Sue Elletson, Lori Schmidt, Olga Strobel
I.T.: Brian Munsterteiger
Sheriff: Steve Berg
Administration: Craig Hayes
Russek extended thanks on behalf of the County for the work the employees completed on the weekend to ensure the building was secure and ready for business on Monday. Eichelberg extended appreciation to Chairman Russek who was also at the building that weekend to assist and lead the process.
Bob Hiivala, Auditor/Treasurer, presented the April Revenue/Expenditure Guidelines for approval. Sawatzke moved to accept the Guidelines, seconded by Thelen, carried unanimously.
The claims listing was reviewed. Russek referenced a claim on Page 5, Motorola Inc. ($127,657.25) for the addition of a channel to the 800 MHz System. He asked when the expenses associated with the 800 MHz System are going to end. Hiivala said the addition of this channel was discussed at the Technology Committee and previously approved by the Board. Eichelberg stated that most of the funding is from the 800 MHz account and there were funds available in that account that were not used by other municipalities. On a motion by Eichelberg, second by Mattson, all voted to approve the claims as listed in the abstract, subject to audit.
Greg Kryzer, Assistant County Attorney, requested the Board schedule a Public Hearing for the repeal and passage of an amended Wright County Point of Sale Septic Certification Ordinance. Kryzer has been working with the Planning & Zoning Office on the proposed amendments. Mattson moved to schedule a Public Hearing for 6-14-11 at 9:30 A.M. The motion was seconded by Thelen and carried 5-0.
Kryzer presented a request to adopt a policy on the recording of certified documents. The request is being presented on behalf of the Offices of County Attorney and Recorder. The policy would be adopted pursuant to Minn. Stat. §507.25 and clarify that certified documents cannot be re-recorded into the same index. The policy was drafted for the purpose of clarifying State Law. Kryzer explained that a person can request a certified copy of a record and then request to have it re-recorded. This makes the abstract unclear. The policy would clarify the process to be used to record a document into a different index. The Wright County Recorder’s Office currently uses the Torrens and Abstract Systems. These systems will allow properties to be split and recorded at the same time (taking a certified copy from the Abstract System and recording it in the Torrens System). Thelen moved to approve the following Policy on Recording Certified Documents, seconded by Mattson, carried unanimously:
Wright County of Minnesota
Office of the County Recorder
Policy on Recording Certified Documents
The Office of the Wright County Recorder will accept all certified copies of a record of conveyance or other instrument authorized by law to be recorded unless the documents were previously recorded in the Office of the Wright County Recorder and affected property situation in Wright County at the time of the original recording. Certified copies of documents which are recorded in the abstract or Torrens index can be recorded in another index so long as the documents have not previously been recorded in that index. This policy has been established pursuant to Minnesota Statute §507.25 (2010).
Marc Mattice, Parks Administrator, requested authorization to prepare documents for submittal of a 2012 Capital Budget request to the State of Minnesota, Office of Management and Budget, requesting bonding funds for acquisition of the Bertram Chain of Lakes Regional Park. The estimated request is $6.1 million. Wright County and the City of Monticello have completed similar requests twice in the past. The 2012 requests are due on 6-24-11. Mattice said if he is authorized to prepare the documents, he will bring back a resolution of support at a future Board Meeting for approval. A resolution of support will also be required from the City of Monticello. Russek asked about matching funds. Mattice stated the match is 50/50. Therefore, if the State approves the request at $6.1 million, the County and City would be required to match that amount (appx. $3 million each). Russek asked where Mattice proposed to fund this match from. Sawatzke said past requests to the State were for acquisition of the land on a piece-meal basis. This request is for the balance. Although he felt it would be good to apply, he did not feel the entire request would be funded. He said ideally, the project would receive $3 million in bonding funds which would be matched with City and County funds. He said the project has been fortunate to date to receive State funding and that is matched with County Capital Improvement Funds (not bonding). If too large of an amount is received from the State at once, the County and City may have trouble meeting the match required and may potentially have to bond. He said an option would be to apply for a smaller amount, or to apply for the larger amount and for Mattice to verbally tell the legislators he works closely with that the project is seeking a lesser amount.
Russek did not feel it was timely to buy park land with the way people are struggling. A lot of people are looking for work and have taxes to pay. He questioned how much park land the County needs. Russek said he is not in favor of this purchase. Sawatzke asked Mattice for an estimate of how many acres have been acquired including the acquisition that hasn’t yet been completed with the last approval from the State. Mattice estimated this at 450 acres if they succeed with the next step of the negotiation process. They are currently in negotiations with the YMCA on acquisition. Mattice said he will be requesting a Committee Of The Whole Meeting in the next couple of weeks to discuss with funding levels, upcoming purchases and matches. Sawatzke said when the County initially entered into this process a few years ago, everyone agreed the County had numerous 100 and 200 acre parks. He said what made this land special was the ability to capture 1,200 acres. He felt the intent of the County all along was to acquire it all or none at all. Sawatzke felt the County needed to stay on course to acquire it all. Thelen said there is broad support for this acquisition of land. According to the study completed, the opinion was that more park land is needed in higher growth areas along I-94. Thelen felt the County would be foolish to not do what they can to preserve this jewel. She would support the request.
Thelen made a motion to authorize the Parks Administrator to prepare documents for submittal of a 2012 Capital Budget request to the State of Minnesota, Office of Management and Budget, requesting funds for acquisition of the Bertram Chain of Lakes Regional Park. The motion was seconded by Sawatzke. Sawatzke said prior to the next Legislative Session, it would be important to have a greater discussion on whether to request the full $6.1 million or whether a smaller number is more appropriate at this time. Sawatzke did not feel it was critical to purchase the entire park in the next 1-2 years. He felt it would be more critical to do so over a series of years. The park land will be something for future generations to enjoy. Mattson referenced the comment made by Thelen on the large public support for the acquisition of land for Bertram Chain of Lakes. He said the survey went out and 144 responses were received out of 120,000. He said that reflected less than 1% of those surveyed even interested. He added that not all of the 144 people that responded supported parks and trails. Mattson felt proceeding would be spending money that the County does not have. He would not support the request. He referenced the last Parks Annual Report reflecting the amount of maintenance required for the park land the County currently has. He felt that if the additional Bertram Park land is acquired, an additional 2-3 people and more equipment will be needed. He said many farmers would like the equipment the Parks Department has but can’t afford it. He said the County has bent over backwards for what they have now. Thelen responded to Mattson’s comments on the survey. She said the survey was not what she was referencing in relation to support for the project. She was referencing the over 300 members of the Friends of Bertram Lakes organization. Mattson said it would seem that the Friends of Bertram Lakes would have responded to this survey. Thelen said the Friends of Bertram Lakes would not have responded to the survey because the survey was about Bertram Chain of Lakes. Mattson said this was true but Bertram is part of the whole system. Sawatzke said it is a lot of money. However, he said all the Commissioners have been out there and he felt they realized it is a great asset. He said many counties and cities spend unbelievable amounts of money to save a small tract of land with the support of communities. He said at this point, development pressures are low. The County needs to look to the future. He questioned what will happen when the County grows to 500,000 people. The land is available now at an affordable price. It may not available in the future and what will be available will not be affordable. Russek said he maintains that enough is enough and cannot support spending more money on parks now. Russek said his constituents are questioning why the County is purchasing this park land. He explains that to his constituents that he and Mattson lose the vote all the time on this issue. Sawatzke said he knows that all Board members feel it is a good project and that there have been votes that carried 5-0. Sawatzke agreed it is a lot of money but it is a good project. Russek said things were different then than they are now. Mattson said the first vote that carried 5-0 was to apply for the grant to see what would come in and what the match would be. Otherwise the votes carried 4-1 and 3-2. The first vote was to apply for the grant. The motion carried 3-2 to authorize the Parks Administrator to prepare documents for submittal of a 2012 Capital Budget request to the State of Minnesota, Office of Management and Budget, requesting funds for acquisition of the Bertram Chain of Lakes Regional Park, with Russek and Mattson casting the nay votes.
Mattice requested the County Board authorize two Board members to attend a site review on the South end of Collinwood Lake to review a drain tile issue. The review will include what repair is needed and who will benefit from the repair (Collinwood Park, landowner, adjacent landowners). Eichelberg moved to authorize Mattson and Russek to meet for the site review. The motion was seconded by Sawatzke. The motion and second were amended to include setting the site review for 6-01-11 at 9:00 A.M. The group will meet at the Courthouse prior to the site review. The motion carried unanimously.
Laid over from the last meeting, the Board discussed the claim from Gries and Lenhardt ($2,000) submitted for payment by Sheriff Hagerty. Eichelberg requested the claim be laid over for one week so that all Commissioners would be present for discussion. He said the claim has been on the County Board Agenda several times. Research was completed and he felt it was not necessarily what the Board wanted to hear. Sawatzke said it is what the Board wanted to hear, that it is the County Board’s decision on whether to pay the claim. Russek said his problem with the claim is that it was submitted for payment by the County without having obtained prior approval to retain the legal services. For that reason, Russek said he would vote against payment of the claim. Sawatzke said he would vote against payment as well. Thelen thought the whole reason for the Sheriff having to seek legal assistance was the difficulty he experienced in putting together his command staff. She felt it was more about the County than about him and that if anyone should pay the claim, it should be the County. She felt it was ridiculous that he would have to go through this process and then crawl over broken glass to get this paid. Thelen said the County heard from the County Attorney and Frank Madden, Labor Law Attorney, that it was a different situation when Tom Kelly and Gary Miller paid their own legal fees. Thelen said this was about Hagerty being able to run his operation. She thought there were some structural insufficiencies that caused this problem. She felt that the County should look into it. She was not sure that it would not happen again. Thelen said it will cost more to take this to Court and it will be another thing that the County will lose. She supported paying the claim. She could not see why we would be making them go through this. She asked the Board to fill her in if she was missing something. The motion failed 2-3 with Sawatzke, Russek and Mattson casting the nay votes. Sawatzke made a motion to not pay the claim. The motion was seconded by Mattson and carried 3-2 with Eichelberg and Thelen casting the nay votes.
Allina Medical Laboratories. $334.70
American Society for Public 100.00
Ameripride Services 242.73
Aramark Services Inc. 12,623.39
Beaudry Propane Inc 2,016.81
Black Moore Bumgardner 100.00
Buff N Glo Inc 249.83
Buffalo Floral & Landscapin 160.00
Center Point Energy 5,206.59
Central McGowan Inc. 208.10
Central MN Mental Health C 400.00
Clearwater Township 697.40
Climate Air 1,383.50
Croteau Plumbing 311.50
Delano/City of 2,233.60
Dell Marketing LP 516.83
Emergency Physicians Prof 254.25
Hillyard Inc. - Minneapolis 1,663.39
Jeddeloh & Snyder PA 2,592.50
LaPlant Demo Inc. 925.84
Marco Inc. 1,159.59
Menards - Buffalo 229.33
MN Counties Intergovernme 1,263.00
MN Sheriffs Association 155.00
Monticello Township 1,312.50
Montrose/City of 966.00
Moorhead Machinery & Boile 1,208.00
Motorola Inc. 127,657.25
Multi Health Systems, Inc 268.40
Office Depot 543.51
On Site Sewage Treatment P 200.00
Research in Motion Corpora 2,422.84
Shell Fleet Plus 519.46
Software House Internation 401.84
St. Croix Solutions 2,737.56
Strand/Elizabeth H 100.00
Superior Striping Inc. 475.00
Transcend United Technol 242.00
University of Minnesota 113.29
US Internet 325.00
Victory Corps 154.94
Vitreoretinal Surgery PA 1,217.58
Woodland Township 885.25
Wright County Highway Dept 47,824.55
Wright Hennepin Electric 1,780.63
27 Payments less than $100 1,209.20
Final total $246,230.24
The meeting adjourned at 9:35 A.M
Published in the Herald Journal June 20, 2011.