Wright County Board Minutes

JULY 14, 2015
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Husom, Sawatzke, Daleiden, Potter and Borrell present.
Daleiden moved to approve the 7-07-15 County Board Minutes as presented. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0.
Daleiden moved to approve the Agenda, seconded by Husom, carried 5-0.
The Consent Agenda was discussed. Daleiden requested that Item D, Administration, “Request To Refer MCIT Workers Compensation Audit Refund Check To Ways And Means Committee” be pulled for discussion. Borrell moved to approve the remainder of the Consent Agenda, seconded by Daleiden, carried 5-0.
Authorize Signatures on Labor Agreement with Teamsters Local 320, Non-Licensed Sheriff Staff, 2015- 2016
Refer to Personnel Committee - Proposed revisions to Wright County Personnel Policy 101 Position Classification and Reclassification
Approve revision to Wright County Personnel Policy 103 Pre-Employment Occupational Physical Examinations - addition of Civilian Bailiff as position requiring pre-employment occupational physical
Authorize signatures on Purchase Agreement for Tax ID #118-500-104-102
1. Approve Claims as Listed in the Abstract, Subject to Audit, for a Total of $239,651.21, with 149 Vendors and 224 Transactions
1. Position Replacement
A. .7 FTE Public Health Nurse
Refer to 7-22-15 Technology Committee:
a. Technology Committee Charter
b. Guidelines for project evaluation
c. Information Security Assessment
Position Replacement:
1. Deputy
Daleiden asked for more information on why Consent Item D, Administration, “Request to refer MCIT 2014 Workers Compensation Audit refund check to Ways and Means Committee” was being referred to Committee. Lee Kelly, County Coordinator, said staff would like to look at potentially using the funding toward the safety program rather than levying funds in 2016. Daleiden moved to approve Consent Item D, seconded by Borrell, carried 5-0.
Bob Hiivala, Auditor/Treasurer, said he would like to set a Committee Of The Whole (COTW) Meeting for the purpose of addressing the Riparian Protection and Water Quality Practices Act. Kurt Deter, Rinke Noonan, will provide information at that meeting on this topic. Husom made a motion to offer the following dates to Deter as options for the COTW Meeting: 7-21-15 at 10:30 A.M., 7-28-15 at 10:30 A.M., and 7-27-15 at 3:00 P.M. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0. Hiivala will contact Deter to determine whether any of these dates will work. If possible, he will present this information later in today’s County Board Meeting.
Hiivala presented the June Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report for approval. Hiivala highlighted the Road & Bridge Fund which includes a newly created Budget 325, which will reflect construction costs associated with the new Public Works Facility. Hiivala said the Report also reflects that Boarding of Prisoners is still above budget. He anticipates review of the 2014/2015 year-to-date figures for all departments for photocopying, professional services and computer software. Changes will be highlighted in the July Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report. Daleiden moved to approve the June Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report. The motion carried 5-0 on a second by Husom.
Hiivala stated that Mike Young, Ditch Inspector, was supposed to present proposals for Ditch 31 repair work at today’s Board Meeting. However, Young was not at the Meeting. Daleiden made a motion to table this discussion until later in today’s County Board Meeting. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0.
Bill Weldele, Pelican Lake resident, and Fred Bengtson, DNR Area Wildlife Manager, were present for discussion on the Pelican Lake Water level and DNR land purchases. Weldele mentioned geese eating crops and proposed an early goose hunting season. Borrell said geese eating crops is a problem for many farmers, especially when land is near bodies of water. Potter explained that Bengtson does not have the ability to implement the hunting season change. Weldele responded the DNR should not buy property then. In addition, he said State land should allow for the use of snowmobiles and four wheelers. Weldele also thinks the DNR should patrol the snowmobile traffic, not the Sheriff’s Office. Potter said he understands Weldele’s concern but said that is also something Bengtson does not have control of.
Weldele said the water level on Pelican Lake is not going down. He said that last winter, the DNR started draining the Lake but forgot to clean Regal Creek from Hwy. 19. Bengtson explained that is not the case. That portion of Regal Creek has quite a bit of fall. The outlet structure was completed in December. They attempted debris removal but it was not feasible at that time. The DNR is completing five stabilization sites. Four have been completed and they hope to complete the fifth in the next few months. The water flow will then be shut down from Pelican Lake and the logs and debris removed from stream. The DNR does not plan to ditch out the stream, which he said handles quite a bit of water flow.
Bengtson said almost the entire portion of Regal Creek from St. Michael Meadows to the pipe line (formerly County Ditch 21 and now City Ditch 21) was cleaned and funded by the DNR. Bengtson said this is temporary and hopes it is the only year they will use Ditch 21. They will be constructing a pipe line for the primary route and water is not planned to be pushed into Ditch 21. The DNR has expended tens of thousands of dollars in ditch improvements in that location. The DNR is waiting for permit approval from the Army Corp of Engineers. Last winter, problems were encountered with ice buildup in areas where there are logs.
Bengtson calculated that over 1 billion gallons of water has flowed out of Pelican Lake, resulting in about a 6” drop in the Lake level. At one point, the water level had decreased by about 8” but recent rains brought the level back up. The flash flows in that watershed have ended up in Pelican Lake. He said if the draining hadn’t occurred the Lake levels could have been up about 10”, resulting in potential flooding to County roads in the area. Once approval from the Army Corp is received on the primary route, they should be able to double the flow from the Lake. They hope to work on that in late August or early September, dependent upon permit approval. One culvert downstream has to be repaired.
Daleiden asked whether a pipe will be run directly from Pelican Lake to the Crow River. Bengtson said that the DNR has land purchased and plans to run water to the Meadows area. The management plan the City agreed to calls for lower flows on Ditch 21. He has great incentive to move water out of Pelican Lake, but they need to be sensitive to water flows downstream. Potter asked whether there are issues with running water into the Crow River. Bengtson said the amount of water that flows from Pelican Lake into the Crow River is not an issue.
Bengtson said Phase 3 involves the primary route which should result in more changes to the Lake. He hopes they will be able to flow water 10-11 months of the year.
David Gindele, Pelican Lake resident, said it doesn’t make sense to him that there is not more water flowing. The Crow River is down. About three weeks ago, he said the Lake was down and he was able to reach three acres of land that he could not get to last spring or last year. With the recent rains, he again cannot get back to the land with machinery. He said the water flow was shut down for a month in the spring until the ice was gone and understands there is a problem in Regal Creek.
Potter explained that the DNR must coordinate work with the City of St. Michael and obtain permits through the Army Corp of Engineers. Regal Creek has one more area that needs to be cleaned. Bengtson said the only major problem with lower Regal Creek is in the winter time with ice dams forming. In the summer, the flow is estimated at 200-300 cu. ft./second. There are many homes on lower Regal Creek, so the DNR will not take the risk of flooding them. A stabilization project is planned in August or September and areas have been identified to remove log jams. Bengtson envisions there will be one-month periods in the winter where the flow is shut down, as he said it is not practice due to the temperatures. There was no action taken on this item.
Sean Riley, Planning & Zoning Administrator, presented a recommendation from the Planning Commission for a Zoning Amendment relating to 762, Solar Energy Farms and Solar Energy Systems. Riley said a series of meetings, starting 4-23-15, were held on proposed changes. A site inspection followed at a solar energy farm near St. Cloud. A Planning Commission workshop was held and modifications were made to the original amendment. Borrell said the Planning Commission agreed on this final version. Discussion by the Planning Commission included height of the panels, whether the panels will be allowed in the Shoreland District, and decommissioning of Solar Energy Farm sites. Riley said the decommissioning process includes having the property owner sign a statement, as is done for cell phone towers.
Discussion led to language reflected in the 6-11-15 Planning Commission Minutes, 762.2, Item 7, which reads in part, “A decommissioning plan may be required to ensure that facilities are properly removed after their useful life.” Husom stated that language that follows this sentence is stronger and uses the word “shall.” She suggested the word “may” be replaced with “shall” in the above mentioned sentence. Buffalo Township conveyed support for strong decommissioning language because of their experiences with gravel pits that have not been reclaimed. After discussion, it was the consensus that the language will be changed to use the word “shall.” Borrell did not feel the Planning Commission would have issue with this. Borrell said the landowner is protected in the contract with the solar panel company as well, requiring the company to remove everything from the land once done.
Greg Kryzer, Assistant County Attorney, supported the change to the draft language. With regard to whether solar energy farms will be allowed in shoreland areas, it was decided at the last Planning Commission meeting that requests will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis. It is hard to define what is deemed suitable shoreland property for this use. On the last page of the 6-11-15 Planning Commission Minutes, draft language was discussed. It was the consensus that the sentence starting on Line 5 should read, “Solar Energy Farms are not allowed in residential districts.” Daleiden also requested that the items be renumbered in Section 762.2. Riley said the Planning Commission decided to follow normal notification procedures to townships. Notice will be sent to neighboring properties within 500’ for a Conditional Use Permit request. Riley will verify the distance and make sure the process follows current practices. Riley plans to update the draft language and present it at a future Board Meeting for approval. Sawatzke referenced comments from the City of Monticello on overlay districts for the Monticello Orderly Annexation (MOA) area. He suggested the MOA Board discuss whether an overlay district is appropriate.
A Committee Of The Whole Meeting was held on 6-15-15 to discuss the FEMA Floodplain Map. At today’s County Board Meeting, Riley requested the following change to the Minutes: Page 1, 2nd paragraph, line 6, should read, “On the other hand, if it is not mapped, owners getting financing and it is a Federal secured loan, would not qualify if they are in a flood zone.” Husom moved to approve the Minutes as corrected. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0. The minutes of the Meeting follow:
Summary was given by Riley of the efforts by FEMA to modernize and update flood plain maps. The State DNR is the coordinating agency between local units of government and FEMA and Strauss is present to help answer questions. An open house/public meeting was held 2-3 years ago and the Townships, Cities and residents were invited. Preliminary maps and data were available. He explained modern data has been incorporated into the new maps. These will replace the current flood plain maps used to protect property, safety and what it means for FEMA flood insurance. At this point a decision is needed as to whether the County wants to appeal some of the information on the maps.
Strauss noted flood insurance is available to anyone in the County that wants to buy it. This process is to provide a better map to show where the risks are. Most lakes were not addressed, but FEMA had focused more on the river areas. This will be one seamless map. Question is whether they want the lake areas included in these maps. The pros are that most people don’t realize a lake could flood. If these areas were included and there is a loss to property due to a flood, there are Federal and State grant programs these owners could make a claim to. On the other hand, if it is not mapped, owners getting financing and it is a Federal secured loan, would not qualify if they are in a flood zone. They will need to get flood insurance. It can become onerous on the property owner to prove they are on high-ground, and if they can show that, they can get a letter of a map amendment. Discussion following about risks, insurance and mortgage costs.
Riley noted the DNR regulates this by requiring the structure must meet a minimum elevation above the highest known water elevation on a lake. Property owners can buy flood insurance. Straus stated the Zone A & B would be the same. Riley noted much information for the Crow River is available with engineering; and, there is a science to it. There is no stage on the lake with the same methology. They are getting a better product, but are they exposing people to having to buy flood insurance. Strauss noted if labeled it would inform people they have a risk. Part of the evaluation is looking at historical water elevations that can leave evidence on trees, where they are growing, types of vegetation, soils and culverts. She used Pulaski Lake as an example. Riley noted the evidence is gathered from decades.
Borrell had questions about a specific situation with a culvert elevation as it related to the Ordinary High-Water Mark (OHM). Strauss noted that is a different situation that she would need to look into.
Rhineberger noted the DNR has done work and changed some OHM elevations. There is a list of lakes that need to be resurveyed. In response to Borrell’s question on the difference between OHM and “high-water”, Strauss explained how the OHM is determined. Daleiden suggested that could be a conversation for another time.
Discussion on the elevation used is the 100 year for an estimate of flooding. Methods of estimating this elevation and the way the information was collected followed. Riley used Lake Crawford that has an OHM established, developed for decades, that has had no dramatic water elevation changes, yet now they are going to introduce the flood plain issue. Maps were viewed and ordinary high-water elevation noted. Strauss indicated if there is evidence that can be submitted with a “Letter of Map Amendment”. Borrell added, or they would not have to include it on the map, Strauss concurred.
Daleiden inquired about the public meetings held. Riley indicated he attended a couple and those in attendance were primarily City and Township representatives. These were preliminary maps and Staff had a list of areas for them to look at. Thought it was to look at the methology and would get something further to review, similar to the project for the Crow River. Rhineberger gave a summary of the maps displayed were viewed and the colors representing zones explained and work with the vendor on two different lists of water bodies. Strauss noted the lakes have been identified years ago and shown on the preliminary map. She asked if there were other lakes they want added, if so they should be added to the list. Question to ask is if there is a benefit to adding; if there is one they want to appeal they have 90 days. Borrell indicated he would not want any added to the list. Daleiden – asked about the Flood Plain map. Berg – explained the advantage to owners if their property is included, is that it could qualify them for money if there is an event. Husom – indicated she is looking to protect her constituents. Borrell questioned why anyone would want to be on the map. Berg – relayed a 2002 situation in Howard Lake and also another event on the southeast side of Cokato Lake; as well, as Waverly. Jobe noted this puts people on notice.
6-15-15 Committee Of The Whole Minutes (cont.):
Riley – explained the funding and buyouts that might be available if included. In two and half years they are not seeing requests to add large lists of new lakes, some have been treated as a flood plain lakes. Borrell questioned Waverly Lake. Krauss stated if they should chose not to include Waverly, they would get information out to the public that they could purchase cheaper insurance.
Berg indicated there is a big push to get flood insurance for everything in a potential flood situation. The Rockford and Delano areas were mentioned as well as other known areas. Rhineberger suggested they would need to include a representative of the City in the discussion. Riley indicated Waverly is on the appeal list. Borrell requested that his District be left alone. Rhineberger explained a removal of an area would have to be an appeal to FEMA. The discussion is whether there are some lakes they want to look at; and, now they have to appeal to get them removed off the list. Riley added, he did not think FEMA was trying to make the program bigger. Strauss indicated communication early on was not the best. Need to determine areas of high risk. Riley noted maps A & E are already tied into the Flood Plain.
Discussion and questions followed by Commissioners on elevations and specific lakes that included Foster, Beebe, French Lake, Indian and Fish. Specific development questions were relayed. Regulations were explained as to replacement or new construction that would be based on minimum elevation requirements. Potter noted lakes that have control structures. Riley indicated there are a couple of lakes they would like to look into further, Fish being one. Rhineberger, two-thirds of the lakes on the list are regulated higher. He questioned would the County want to change that minimum elevation down to what FEMA has, the County can be more restrictive. Borrell indicated he is inclined to be more flexible. Daleiden and Husom noted the public would pay for that. Lakes fully developed were mentioned. Borrell asked why they would care in those situations. Rhineberger noted the State Building Code references FEMA flood elevations and what types of construction that impacts. There is no flexibility on the building codes. Strauss explained the State rules that ask for a Conditional Use Permit for storage structures. Riley explained that is not required in Wright County. Strauss further relayed the State rules in relation to the lowest floor and crawl space as it relates to the OHM and flood plain.
Husom did not feel they should remove anything from the flood plain. This information would help people on lakes make a determination. As a Board she did not think they should arbitrarily say whether people would want to know. It would be immoral for someone to sell land that cannot be built on because it is flood plain. Husom referred to Lake Pulaski in her district where 50-80 homes were developed during a time when the lake was down and then came back up and it was determined they were built in the lake bed. Riley indicated they were not looking to take things out, maybe looking at some to be added and there may be some other reasons. This is about the list of lakes and if there are some they want to appeal or can be removed without an appeal. Borrell suggested as many as possible without an appeal and appeal the rest. Rhineberger noted there are some they might not want taken off He displayed a map to display some large area that is backwater from flooding. This area does not have a flood plain designation, but surrounded by the Crow River, adding this would make official what is actually there. Borrell agreed that makes sense, but is not necessary where people know the lake can come up like Howard Lake and Waverly lakes. There is no reason to incur more cost. Rhineberger indicated Maple Lake is not on the Flood Plain list and the impact there is substantial due to the number of lots. In addition to flood insurance, there are additional requirements that the County is already regulating. Potter referred to Highway 55 and they could be looking at significant impact, noting that should have never been built where it is.
Discussion followed on the appeal and information that would need to be provided. Strauss noted Wright County already regulates to a higher standard. Riley questioned the methology of the current Zone A redlined. Strauss indicated that may have been a mistake. Potter suggested that in order to get some removed, they would show they already regulate to a higher standard; and, there is data to show that it does not need to be on the map. He questioned which lakes are most important and they want on the list. Rhineberger indicated they would have to go back through the lists and pare it down. Riley would need a meeting to adopt a new map, but not want to arbitrarily take off all lakes. He noted there are some lake they want to appeal and another couple to add. They want to know what those will be. Strauss had explained the preliminary map would have to be revised and a list. There is 90 days to appeal the process and notices. Borrell would like to see as many as possible taken out. He suggested they could add more at a later time. Strauss indicated adding areas only comes around every 20-30 years to the lake maps. She does not usually see a community that wants to be added. Jobe questioned if they are looking for a map that Staff is making a recommendation on. Riley indicated he would like a list showing the data. Potter felt for those areas they ask to have removed, it is best to have the data to back it. Jobe asked about a deadline for this. Strauss indicated they should start the appeal period which has been on hold.
Daleiden asked for a consensus of the County Board as to whether they are against or for and if there are some lakes that would benefit from being added to the list, such as Indian Lake. Strauss noted some of the benefits of having it mapped; there could buyouts from Federal & State money and the land be left as open space. Berg added that these would be added to the Mitigation Plan, which is a County plan for acquisition when they have willing sellers. This would not be a specific house site, but area. He explained how these areas are identified, they are in the process of updating a five-year plan, and separate entities provide this information.
Potter suggested they establish the steps needed. Riley indicated Staff would work with FEMA and the DNR to establish a list. Those they would like crossed off the list would require an appeal. Potter added, then those that would be added? Riley - indicated the data they could provide includes pictures, where variances were needed, there are claims data maps where there have been hits. With the data on claims they could reach out to home owners for information rather than adding them in the flood plain.
Strauss stated there are grants available. Daleiden noted a location in the City of Otsego and asked if they are on a remedial list? Berg- stated he is not aware that they are. A map was viewed of the property the County owns and Daleiden relayed the history of flooding. Owners out here have sump pumps that run continually. He felt those owners should be included in the remedial list. Strauss offered to look up claims data for the area. Potter suggested they appeal areas where there have been no claims but add areas where there have been many. Strauss indicated she would provide those, but noted most would fall within the river areas and they would want to get that mapped out. Potter indicated they want to use common sense in a way that would provide a service to the public or for sellers and buyers of property. Riley agreed the product will be better than the old maps. Strauss noted the new maps would provide an easy way to determine flood levels and where there is risk.
Borrell asked if they could determine the people who have filed claims, have another meeting and find out whether these buyouts might be available. Strauss indicated the person making the claim is private information and Riley noted this would not be addressed by a particular house. Strauss stated it is possible a portion of the property could go back and funds are used to put the property in public ownership. The kind of information she could gather would be the number of claims on a particular lake.
Review of the language the DNR is recommending to be added to the Ordinance on repetitive loss option, such as 50% in one event the property has to be brought up to code. If there are a couple losses over a ten year period that add up to 50% of the structure, the rules would also apply. If the owner has flood plain insurance additional funds can be obtained to elevate or move the house to another location. This gives some options. Commissioners indicated this makes sense, noting repetitive damage claims cost the public. Strauss relayed flooding in Waterville in 2011 and 2014 as an example. Daleiden agreed and suggested they get the number of claims for a lake that is of concern. Berg stated there is an update needed on the mitigation plan. Initially, five years ago there was not a lot of cooperation between the cities and townships. Riley noted getting the claim data may change the mitigation plan or would be a way to reach out to homeowners. Potter agreed some of these populated areas need to have something in place. Husom agreed she wants to protect those owners. Rhineberger listed several lakes where claims have been made. Strauss noted people that have property that is not mapped are less likely to feel the need for flood insurance.
Meeting adjourned at 3:40 with direction for Strauss and Staff to obtain the best information to make a decision.
(End of 6-15-15 COTW Minutes)
Laid over from earlier in the Meeting, Hiivala provided three dates that Kurt Deter is available for a Committee Of The Whole (COTW) Meeting for the purpose of addressing the Riparian Protection and Water Quality Practices Act.
Daleiden moved to set the COTW Meeting for 7-20-15 at 9:30 A.M. in the County Board Room. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0.
At the request of Hiivala, Borrell made a motion to table discussion on Ditch 31 repairs until Mike Young is available for the presentation. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0.
The meeting recessed at 10:08 A.M. and reconvened at 10:13 A.M.
Virgil Hawkins, Highway Engineer, requested approval of Amendment #1 to the TH 55 Corridor Coalition (SRF) Agreement. The Agreement was approved by the TH 55 Corridor Coalition. In response to Daleiden, Hawkins said this will have no effect on the budget. The current Agreement which ends September, 2015 is for $90,000. Only a portion of that funding has been used and the Amendment will allow SRF to continue working for the Coalition. Daleiden moved to approve Amendment #1 as requested, seconded by Husom, carried 5-0.
Hawkins stated that bids were opened for the 2015 Street Lighting Safety Project (SP 086-070-011) on 6-26-15. The low bid received is from Design Electrical Contractors, Inc. of St. Cloud MN for $143,457.09. Project funding includes a 90% Federal Safety Grant ($129,111.38) and 10% Local Levy ($14,345.71). An amount of $12,000 of Local Levy dollars has been budgeted for this project. Borrell moved to award the bid to Design Electrical Contractors as recommended. The motion carried 5-0 on a second by Daleiden.
Hawkins requested approval of a Maintenance Agreement with Hennepin County for Wright CR 139 (Hennepin CR 139), Wright CSAH 17 (Hennepin CSAH 50) and Wright CSAH 17 (Hennepin CR 157). The conditions of the Agreements remain the same with Hennepin County for these shared maintenance County-line roads. The Agreement will be in place until 2019 and will replace the current Agreement which expires this year. Daleiden moved to adopt Resolution #15-35, seconded by Borrell, carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Hawkins stated that bids were opened 7-01-15 for Bid Package #2 for the Highway Department Building project. There were 66 bids and 25 scopes of work. Alternate bids included:
Alternate 1 – Add approx. 12,000sf to the vehicle storage; $515,493
Alternate 2A – LED light fixtures in fleet services; $31,800
Alternate 2B – LED light fixtures in vehicle storage; $29,650
Alternate 2C – (if Alt. 1 is accepted): LED light fixtures in additional sf of vehicle storage; $11,600
Alternate 3 – Increase roof thickness from 60 mil to 90 mil; $45,000
Alternate 3A (if Alt. 1 is accepted): Roof from 60 to 90 mil additional sf of vehicle storage; $14,200
Alternate 5 – Add precast plank above rooms in vehicle storage for additional storage; $50,130
Hawkins recommended awarding Bid Package 2 in the amount of $6,080,358.35 and Alternates 1, 2, 3 and 5 which total $697,873. This is approximately $1.4 million under the estimated project cost. Sawatzke asked whether the project cost for everything (soft costs, construction, etc.) is just under $15.6 million. Hawkins said that is correct. It also includes furniture and equipment. Sawatzke asked whether the architect provided a high estimate at $17 million. Hawkins replied that if the work were being completed in the summer, bids would have been higher. A lot of the work will be completed in the winter. Sawatzke asked for the cost of the new Impound Lot. Kelly said that cost is close to $1 million. Sawatzke said if funding for the Impound Lot were from the bond, it would leave about $423,000 to remodel the former Highway garage. Potter said another potential source of funding would be the housing of prisoners.
Mark Kotten, Kraus Anderson Construction, said the mean bid of the high/low bid was within about $200,000 of budget. He said the County received exceptionally low bids. Sawatzke questioned payback on LED fixtures. Cotton replied that there is about an 8-year payback based on a study completed. This was chosen as an alternate based on these results.
Discussion followed on process for items such as furniture and technology. Hawkins said he plans to obtain items directly through the State contract and through the furniture provider, Intereum. Sawatzke said items should be sent to Committee prior to acquisition.
The Board referenced a letter received from Warren Olson/CEO of Olson & Sons Electric Inc., dated 7-08-15. It outlines why a bid security was not included with the bid documents for Bid Package 2. At today’s Board Meeting and in the letter, Olson indicated that he did have a bid security at the bid opening process as well as a bid surety. He showed the bid security document to Highway staff but chose not to include it with the bid documents at bid time. Olson explained two banks were involved when they went to obtain a bid bond. The response received was that the bond was approved but there were some attachments to it. One of the banks was unsure if they would support the wording in the document between the bank and the bonding company. Olson subsequently contacted Kraus Anderson and was told that the bid bond was required but it would be up to him whether to submit it. It would also be the County’s decision whether to accept the bid. Olson said at the bid opening, he submitted the letter but chose not to include the bond. He did not want the County to keep the cashier’s check if the bond did not go through.
Olson stated that the July 4th holiday weekend followed, which delayed contact with Kraus Anderson. When they did speak, Kraus Anderson asked for the bid bond by 12:00 p.m. the same day. Olson said his banker was on vacation but indicated he would try. In his next contact with Kraus Anderson, he learned that the recommendation was made for another contractor. Olson said the bidding documents reflect that the County Board has the ability to review bid irregularities. Olson said he has worked with other counties in the past and bonding was not required. Olson said he submitted the low bid.
Brian Asleson said he received an email from Hawkins last week which indicated that a bid bond was missing for Olson and Sons. The purpose of the bond is to guarantee that the prices are held until a contract is entered into. It is a procedural requirement and does not affect the amount or substance of the bid. At that time, he responded to Hawkins indicating the County has the legal authority to question the submission of a bid bond. Thereafter, Kraus Anderson contacted Mr. Olson. Asleson understands that Olson had the bond in hand at the time of the bid opening. The bond was included in materials left at the Attorney’s Office on 7-10-15. Asleson said there is also an issue of the payment performance bond requirement set by Statute which guarantees the main contractor will pay their subs, employees, and material costs. Asleson understood that cost was not included in the original bid. In the materials Olson provided to Asleson last Friday, the base bid and alternates had increased. Asleson said whenever the substance of a bid changes after a bid opening, there is no leeway to accept the bid. In an email to Highway staff, Asleson recommended awarding to the second lowest bidder.
Sawatzke asked whether a similar situation has happened in the past. Asleson was unsure but did not recall one. Sawatzke asked whether the Board could allow Olson and Sons to provide the County with a bid bond and at the original bid price. If not, then the County would proceed to the second lowest bidder. Asleson said that if the Board chose that route and the contractor agreed to it, it would be legally defensible. He stated that is not what he would recommend. Once the County receives information that the original bid was not where the contractor thought it should be, then there may be concerns about practical issues during construction. This situation deals with more than just missing a bid bond. Husom did not want to set precedence. Potter asked about legal ramifications. Asleson said it could happen but it is rare. His advice to the Board, based on what is the most legally defensible position, is to award the bid to the second lowest bidder. Both avenues would be legally defensible if a performance bond were obtained for the original bid and a bond provided. Olson clarified that the increase in the bid relates to the cost of the bond. He said he respects the Board’s decision. It was the consensus that the County should proceed with award to the second low bidder for electrical/low voltage. Daleiden moved to approve the recommendation of Hawkins to award Bid Package 2 in the amount of $6,080,358.35 and Alternates 1, 2, 3 and 5 which total $697,873. The motion was seconded by Husom. The motion carried 4-0 with Borrell abstaining. Borrell said he abstained as he was against the original bond.
Hawkins requested the Board authorize him to approve or deny change orders up to the amount of $20,000 for the Wright County Highway Building Project, without first seeking approval by the County Board. This will ensure the Project proceeds in an efficient manner and stays on construction schedule. Daleiden made a motion to authorize Virgil Hawkins, Highway Engineer, to approve or deny change orders in the amount of $5,000 or less for the Project. Anything else would be brought to the Owner’s Committee as that group has authorization for up to $20,000. Anything above that amount would go to the County Board. The motion was seconded by Husom. Sawatzke said that following protocol consistent with the Impound Lot Project, the Owner’s Committee does not have to formally meet when considering change orders that are time sensitive. Approval can be obtained from the two Commissioners that are appointed to that Committee. Hawkins was directed to contact the two Commissioners on the Owners Committee when a change order is not time sensitive, even if it is under $5,000. Sawatzke voiced that he does not want a series of change orders that will use up the contingency of $300,000. Hawkins said the purpose of having the authorization to approve change orders is to save money to keep the project going. The motion carried 4-0 with Borrell abstaining.
A Transportation Committee Of The Whole (TCOTW) Meeting was held on 6-23-15. At today’s County Board Meeting, Daleiden moved to approve the TCOTW Minutes and recommendations, seconded by Borrell. The motion carried 5-0. The Minutes of the TCOTW Meeting follow:
1. Introductions
Chairperson Potter called the meeting to order and introductions were made.
2. Rhoades Avenue Project Update
A summary [Attachment 2] of the background of this project was distributed to those present. Hausmann explained that the State Park Road Account funds were designated for construction, and the Wright County Highway Department’s contribution to the project would be the engineering and design inspection. The township’s contribution is estimated to be between $15,000 and $20,000, which is the equivalent to gravel maintenance of the road. Design work will be in progress this fall and winter, and the advertisements and bid will be included in Wright County’s 2016 overlay program.
The proposed Agreement No. 15-51 was discussed, and Article 6 received special review regarding ownership of the road and expected maintenance by the township. Wright County will be responsible only for crackfilling operations, which it will do as needed. The only reason that this portion of the roadway is blacktopped is because of the traffic to Collinwood County Park, which is located about two miles south of TH 12. Borrell said that he had talked with Cokato Township about looking into the possibility of having the county take over Rhoades Avenue from the park north to TH 12, which would then provide a trail link to the trail connecting the cities of Cokato and Dassel. There was further discussion about the future possibility of adding a pedestrian trail to the Rhoades Avenue corridor, and Hausmann said that the funds allocated for this road improvement project are specific to improvements to the roadway. It will be built according to standard, and if a pedestrian trail is desired in the future, it can be added at that time without incurring unnecessary or extra expense due to delay. When asked about the necessary right of way to accommodate a trail, Hausmann said that there is not even 33 feet of right of way, but rather that it is referred to as prescriptive, which is what we have and what we use. If it is a prescriptive easement, the property wasn’t actually bought. Asleson said that more of a notice process is required but that this doesn’t establish a legal easement for mapping. Hausmann said that in order to widen the road for the addition of a trail, more right of way would have to be purchased, and that work wouldn’t have anything to do with this project. No money would be saved at this time, and it could be done later and funds wouldn’t be wasted. Potter added that protocol has to be followed when using this DNR road account money so that future requests would not be prejudiced, and Borrell agreed. In regard to the county taking over the two miles of Rhoades to TH 12, Sawatzke said that this portion would probably never fit on the county system, even with the park. Borrell said that Cokato Township has some roads that it would be willing to take back if the county would take over this two miles of Rhoades. However, it would probably be best to move forward at this time and figure it out later. Mattice commented that funds from the State Park Road Account are available because of the park, and engineering services and crackfilling are more than we usually do for non-county roads. He suggested that the draft agreement be sent to the Township, and if they agree to it, design can begin. Hausmann said that the township should prepare for various maintenance items, including sealcoating, by putting money aside each year until the maintenance is necessary.
3) Revocation of CR 147 to Buffalo Township and Rockford Township
Hausmann distributed a summary [Attachment 3] of past discussion of this issue and said that a public hearing is required by law before the county gives a roadway over to a township, and even though it makes sense to have a joint hearing, the state statutes read that separate hearings should be held for each township. The date(s) chosen should be at least 45 days out, with a 30-day notice sent to each Township. The process is different for the county than it is for a city, as the County Board can adopt a resolution to turn a road over to a city. An agreement was made with the City of Buffalo that Wright County would pay them $100,000 to take over that part of CR 147 that would be included in the Settlers Parkway construction (basically, from the new roundabout at TH 25 on the southeast side of Buffalo to the city limits), and this would be in lieu of any improvements prior to the turn back. The railroad crossing at CR 147 will be eliminated as a result of this road construction. Asleson said that the public hearing would most likely be held at the town hall, but it wouldn’t have to be held during the regularly scheduled Town Board meeting. That decision would be up to each individual township. That statute isn’t clear on some of the details, but the County Board shall probably estimate the time, date, and place for a public hearing in the township. It doesn’t say that the County Board is to hold the hearing, but it is clear that a quorum of County Board members is required to be present. Eckblad of Rockford Township expressed his concern about that portion of road that would be turned back to Rockford Township and asked what plans the county has to improve it before it gets turned back to the township. The township has been waiting to see what is proposed and asked if there is a preliminary design in place. Hausmann said that this would be similar to other county systems that get turned back, which would include reclaiming and overlaying by the county before the turn back. There was some discussion about the increase in traffic that might occur when the crossing at CR 147 gets removed, and Eckblad said that the traffic on the township roads has increased significantly since the roundabout opened, and they have seen a lot of semi traffic on Calder Avenue. Ever since the construction began on TH 25, there has been an increase in traffic down on 5th Street SE and Calder and starting up at 30th Street SE. He is not sure where it is coming from. When the traffic increases on Calder, they usually start hearing from residents. Schmidt said that he didn’t expect traffic to decrease on CR 147 just because of the new road through Settlers Parkway. Husom commented that people are always looking for new routes, and the railroad crossing at 5th Street SE and TH 55 is a terrible highway approach. There was further discussion about what the improvements to CR 147 might entail and how the maintenance would be handled, particularly during snow events. Most township officials present indicated that they had not been informed about their township’s responsibilities would be after the turn back of this road and weren’t clear on what steps were being planned to allow for turnarounds for different maintenance operations. Sawatzke suggested that a meeting, rather than a public hearing, be set up first with both Buffalo and Rockford Townships and Wright County to discuss the needs and accommodations that are pertinent to the turn back of this portion of CR 147. Potter agreed that it would be good to have more discussion before a public hearing is held. Ernesti suggested that the commissioners and township officials drive CR 147 to see what it looks like and to give all commissioners an opportunity to get familiar with this stretch of road.
RECOMMENDATION: It was the recommendation of the TCOTW that the commissioners of the Wright County Board do an on-site review of that portion of CR 147 that is proposed to be turned back to Buffalo and Rockford Townships. Township officials are invited to join them for a site viewing on Tuesday, July 21, 2015. The County Board members are invited to meet at the Public Works site and depart from there at 12:30 p.m. to visit the site. The County Board will return to the Public Works building and commence a Transportation Committee of the Whole Board meeting at 1:00 p.m., immediately following the site visit on July 21, 2015.
4) Chouinard Property Status Update
Wright County purchased a piece of property (formerly known as ‘the Chouinard property) as part of a road construction project with the intention of reselling that portion that would not be needed for right of way. The value of the property has decreased considerably since the purchase, but Asleson explained that refusal on the county’s part to purchase the entire property would most likely have resulted in high litigation costs. The parcel is 2.9 acres and there used to be a residence and outbuildings, but all buildings have been removed. A blacktopping company on the adjoining acreage made an offer to purchase the property for $50,000, but that was rejected by the County Board. No other offers have been made. It is possible that this could be split into two parcels, and it is zoned ‘industrial’ by the City of St. Michael, although the city has agreed to allow some type of commercial development. There was further discussion about the value of the property and whether it would be best to advertise it for sale or to have a realtor/broker find a buyer. Asleson said that a request for bids would have to be advertised for three weeks in a legal newspaper and one week in the local newspaper. An auction could be held, but it’s possible that the broker wouldn’t want to take the time to do that if there is no guarantee of acceptance on the part of the county.
RECOMMENDATION: It was the consensus of the TCOTW that Mark Johnson and Brian Asleson contact some local realtors/brokers/auctioneers regarding their recommendations on the best approach to selling this property and to get their professional opinion on what value should be assigned to it.
5) Discuss Updating our 5-Year C.I.P. Plan [Attachment 4]
Hausmann said that Hawkins would like to meet with the commissioners to update the current Five Year Plan. In order to make application for some funding, the project has to first be on a plan before it is eligible for funds. There are currently some items on the Ten Year Plan that are ready to be moved to the Five Year Plan, but it would be good to have a meeting and get input from different sources, including the townships and cities. Steps should be taken soon so that application can be made for 2017 funding.
RECOMMENDATION: It was the consensus of the TCOTW that Virgil Hawkins and Chad Hausmann set up a time to discuss with the commissioners various road projects that should be moved to the Five Year Plan and to subsequently schedule a road tour to visit the different sites that are under consideration as future projects. Input from cities and townships will be solicited.
6) Compost Facility Loaders
Jans informed the committee members that the two compost facility loaders were traded in for a new loader that will likely be used at the Otsego shop. In turn, the Otsego shop’s current loader will be moved to the compost facility for use there. Bill Stevens of Planning and Zoning said that even though this exchanged loader is smaller, it gets used only about 200 hours/year, which won’t present a problem. The loaders traded in had a value of about $8,000 each, which was used for the purchase of the new loader. The value of the loader that will be moved to the compost facility has a value of $31,500. There was consensus that Jans would contact the County Auditor regarding these transactions so that they will be properly recorded.
7) CSAH 37 Bridge over I-94: Add Turn Lanes (WB I-94) – MnDOT [Attachment 5]
Nafstad explained that the City of Albertville would like to add a center turn lane and a by-pass lane to the CSAH 37 bridge over I-94, but the narrower width of the bridge is presenting a design challenge for the safety of pedestrian and vehicle traffic. He said that it is only a matter of time before another signal is needed on the west side of the bridge. Hausmann said that he will continue talking with Nafstad and Tom Dumont of MnDOT to see what types of modifications would be recommended and bring an update back to the Board.
The meeting was adjourned at 12:12 p.m.
(End of 6-23-15 TCOTW Minutes)
A Building Committee Meeting was held on 7-08-15. At today’s County Board Meeting, Daleiden moved to approve the Minutes and recommendations. The motion was seconded by Sawatzke and carried 5-0. The Building Committee Minutes follow:
I. Possible Relocation of Law Library
Kelly recapped discussion from the 1-28-15 Building Committee meeting regarding options for creating additional space for the Information Technology Department (IT) and a Training Center. The options on the table today appear to work the best.
Tagarro distributed a chart entitled, “IT Expansion Scenario” (see attached). He proposed relocating Health & Human Services (HHS) Training Center equipment to the former Sheriff’s Dispatch room at the Government Center. Tagarro said some renovation will be required, but the network wiring is already installed, and the room is perfectly shaped to accommodate the computer stations. The location of the new space is convenient to hallways, the lunchroom, and restrooms. In its present location at HHS, the Training Center is not utilized heavily by other County Departments.
Schwartz said they did not want to give up the Training Center, but their need for more work stations is a higher priority. She distributed a four-page Intereum preliminary proposal dated 7-07-15 with a picture of the potential work station (see attached).
Tagarro said the former Dispatch Center will require new flooring and removal of the desks in the back of the room. A card access reader should be installed on the door. A storage closet is adjacent to the room.
Daleiden directed staff to get quotes on the cost of renovation.
Tagarro asked whether Information Technology staff could move the equipment from HHS as soon as possible. Schwartz said they received a quote of $10,000 to $15,000 to remodel the HHS Training Center into a work space for eight staff. Schwartz said they would like to deconstruct the Training Center as soon as possible to provide a space for new social workers.
Daleiden asked whether the request to deconstruct and remodel the former HHS Training Center has to go to the Building Committee. Kelly said that is traditionally how it has been done. However, if the Committee was comfortable with the quotes presented they could authorize staff to move forward at today’s meeting. Kelly asked whether the Commissioners wanted to place restrictions on the cost of the HHS remodeling. He asked if the Committee would like to review the quotes to remodel the former Sheriff’s Dispatch enter before proceeding.
Daleiden said the quotes to remodel the former Sheriff’s Dispatch Center into a new computer Training Center will need to go to the Building Committee for review, but the HHS reconstruction may move forward.
Tagarro referred to Page 2 of the “IT Expansion Scenario” handout. He said this option allows all IT staff to be housed in the same area. Tagarro felt relocating the Law Library to the former Assessor’s Office on the second floor of the Annex Building would be the best choice. Librarian Colleen Norgren is open to the idea, as it provides additional office space for them.
Tagarro said he is planning to add more staff, and will need room to grow.
Daleiden asked whether another area on the first floor of the Government Center was considered for the Law Library, as it is close to the Courts. Kelly said the proximity to Courts could be an advantage with that location, but the space is leased through the next school year.
There was additional discussion about how to utilize the first floor area and the former Assessor’s Office. Norgren said she felt the former Assessor’s Office area would provide easier public access. Proximity to Courts was not a driving issue. She asked the source of funding for remodeling. Kelly said that project would be billed out of the County’s Site Improvement budget.
Potter said the simplest move for the Law Library would be the former Assessor’s Office. There was discussion regarding whether the County Recorder or the County Auditor/Treasurer would need the former Assessor’s Office space in the future. Also reviewed were options utilizing the leased space on the first floor of the Government Center.
The Committee recessed at 10:55 A.M. to tour the first floor Government Center leased space and current Law Library area. The Committee reconvened at 11:50 A.M.
1) Authorize deconstruction of the Health & Human Services Training Center and add eight new staff work stations at a cost not to exceed $14,000.
2) Authorize obtaining quotes for remodeling the former Sheriff’s Dispatch Center into a new Training
3) Transfer computer work stations and equipment from the Health & Human Services former Training Center to the new Training Center.
4) Authorize relocation of the Law Library to the former Assessor’s Office space, and coordinating the move with the Information Technology and Building Maintenance staff.
5) Obtain quotes regarding flooring (both carpet cleaning and replacement), paint, and adding a window to the former Deputy Assessor’s office.
6) Verify that the floor will support library bookshelves and filing cabinets.
(End of 7-08-15 Building Committee Minutes)
A Capital Improvement/Finance Committee Meeting was held on 6-30-15. At today’s County Board Meeting, Sawatzke moved to approve the Minutes and recommendations. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0. The Minutes of the Meeting follow:
Overview of Draft 2016-2021 Capital Improvement Plan
1. Overview of Draft CIP (attached spreadsheet)
Vergin provided an overview of projects included in the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) for 2016-2021 and the funding sources.
a. Technology Committees Role in CIP
The role of the Technology Committee will be to review initiatives and determine whether they will move forward. Those that are moved forward will be placed in the CIP.
b. Enterprise Projects
Projects in 2016 total $403,500. After discussion, it was recommended that the Information Security Assessment be listed as a new initiative in 2016 at a cost of $60,000.
Daleiden referenced Website Development and the $100,000 placeholder in years 2016-2021. Tagarro said this relates to any type of website enhancements. The original figures were based on CivicPlus development costs. Daleiden asked whether the projected amounts may be a bit high. In comparison, the Centralized Records Management has a placeholder of $50,000 per year for the same time period. He thought that amount may need to be more for the first couple of years. Tagarro replied that there will be new initiatives, and the website development line item could be the funding source. An example would be GIS mapping. Daleiden stated that the Ordinance Codification project will be completed in October. County Ordinances will be placed on the website thereafter.
c. County Facility/Building Needs
• Repurpose/Removal of Old Jail (HVAC)
Additional HVAC upgrades are being reviewed for the Government Center. There will be extensive piping costs associated with the project. The piping will be routed through the former Jail. Discussion followed on whether it makes sense to remove the former Jail building. L. Kelly said the Building Inspector has indicated that it is a good building but not rated for storage on upper floors. Current efforts are maintaining and replacing systems before issues arise. More general breakdowns have been occurring.
L. Kelly said the purpose of the CIP is to plan ahead. The challenge lies in that there has not been much discussion on what to do with the former Jail building. The Board has indicated that Courts will be located at the Government Center for a while and so would like to see some maintenance items taken care of in that area. Daleiden said direction was previously given to replace carpeting in the Courts area but understands no decision has been made. L. Kelly said that the carpeting decision was postponed because of new technologies and courtroom remodels. The delay is so the entire courtroom can be carpeted at one time. L. Kelly said it is important to have the direction of the Board on how long Courts will remain at this location. If it is an additional 2-5 years, he would like funds budgeted for maintenance of the current space.
T. Kelly referenced the letter sent to the County Board by the Tenth Judicial District (attached). Currently, the only courtroom that can host a Grand Jury proceeding is Courtroom 2. Court schedules have been delayed to accommodate space needs in the Courts area.
Daleiden offered the suggestion of remodeling the outside exercise area of the former Jail into courtrooms as a less costly alternative. L. Kelly said the DLR Space Study from 2004 also included a proposal to expand toward the street. Judge Tenney said Courtrooms 3 and 4 are small. The outdoor recreation area potentially would provide space for 2 courtrooms and conference rooms. He asked how long the Committee members envisioned Courts will remain at this facility. Daleiden and Sawatzke both responded a minimum of 5 years. T. Kelly said to make this footprint work for more than 10 years, remodels will need to include expansion and upgrade of technologies. He questioned whether the funds invested to remodel will put the County ahead or behind in the long run.
Sawatzke said prior to the new Jail/LEC being constructed, Wright County paid Sherburne County a couple hundred thousand per year to house inmates. Wright County built the Jail because of the fear there would be nowhere to go with inmates.
Sawatzke introduced discussion on potentially utilizing video arraignments. Judge McPherson said that is something that can be considered. When they looked at this in the past, savings and efficiencies would not be realized. It may result in problems associated with staff from the Public Defender’s Office needing to be present at both locations because of various hearings. Video arraignments could be considered for first arraignment hearings.
Judge Tenney thanked the Committee for considering Courts as part of the CIP. If the decision is made for Courts to remain at its current location for some time, he requested that consideration be given to locating Court Services within the Tenth Judicial District secured area because of recent incidences. McPherson asked that the Board also consider placing funds in the CIP for renovation of space. Courts is out of room with respect to the courtrooms. There are times when there is not room for all parties to be in the courtroom, especially with Courtroom 4.
Discussion led to the cost of courtroom upgrades. Tschumper stated the estimated cost is $8,000-$15,000 to have an architect review the space, meet with staff, and draft drawings for six courtrooms. The County is responsible for that cost. The State funds the technology portion (computers, printers and monitors). Judge McPherson said if Courts remains in the current location for a 10-year period, she would like the scope expanded to look at the feasibility of creating another courtroom area. If it works to combine Courtrooms 3 and 4 as Tenney mentioned and other space is available, it may work for the 10-year period. The current space will not work. Daleiden said that a space study will be conducted in June. At the time the decision was made to move forward with the study, the idea was that Courts will be at this location for a minimum of 5 years. He asked whether the study in June is strictly for a new building.
Tschumper responded that the study will include the recommended square footage needed to operate now and projections for the future. She was unsure whether that would be based on a 10-year scale. Judge McPherson said the study will not reflect whether the square footage will work at the current location. Daleiden said that information is needed. If Courts will remain at this location 10 years, the County needs to know how to make that work. Sawatzke said they do not want the study to just reflect that a new building is needed. They need to figure out a way to improve operations in the interim. McPherson said the scope does not include assessing the Government Center for viability. The architect could be contacted to make sure they have the staff available to complete this work and what the additional cost will be. McPherson said another option would be to utilize local architects familiar with designing and remodeling of court space (done in nearby counties). Discussion followed on the process that will be followed to move to paperless in the Courts area over the next several years. Additional discussion occurred on a courtroom at the Jail/LEC site and the possibility of holding trials at that location. Judge McPherson said that trial courtrooms would still be required at the Courthouse location. They would also need jury space at the Jail/LEC site. She will present this idea to the Tenth Judicial District Judges.
L. Kelly said there are space concerns with other departments as well. He suggested professional assistance in developing a plan. Daleiden thought the 2004 Space Study would be viable today as the growth did not occur that was projected. L. Kelly said it warrants review but some things have changed in that period of time. He is trying to be proactive and get ahead of issues. Daleiden said that is why this should be looked at every five years. Sawatzke said the County Board needs to balance this with the public’s desire to pay. The County Board represents the public. He did not feel a major project would be expected by the public within a couple of years of another major project. L. Kelly said having a plan with a projected timeline will allow staff to manage those expectations. Sawatzke said at the time Courts is moved to the Jail/LEC location, it will have major implications. Potentially 40% of staff may move. That could result in remodels at the Government Center with space that has been vacated. A $50 million project could have a tail of $5-10 million in resulting projects.
Daleiden said staff should figure that it will be another 10 years for relocation of Courts. Sawatzke agrees with that statement and also agrees that Courts will be the next project in line. MacMillan suggested Department Heads be consulted for input, which may result in achieving things faster and meeting the Department’s needs. He thought the 2004 Space Study was too broad. MacMillan was surprised that the Public Works project moved forward in front of Courts, as in 2004 Courts was the focus. Sawatzke said it was the expectation that Courts would move. However, there is not the number of inmates and court volume today that was estimated 10 years ago.
• Site Improvement Funding (Yr. End Roll Over to CIP – Bldg. Needs)
Vergin said that two hot water boilers at the LEC ($335,000) may be purchased in 2016 but funding was set aside in 2015. The County is working with Braun Intertec to determine whether that is feasible. The Steam Boilers ($320,000) and the Annex MUA’s ($195,000) reflected in 2016 are related to the former Jail. Sawatzke asked whether that work needs to be done. Daleiden said the decision needs to be made first on whether the former Jail building will remain so that plans can be made accordingly. He said the former Jail cannot be repurposed. Sawatzke asked Daleiden whether the suggestion is to remove the majority of the Jail but leave the portion where the plumbing has been run. Daleiden said that is correct.
Vergin said a new item for 2016 is deferred maintenance for the Parks and Surveyors Building ($830,000), which came out of the Master Plan for the Public Works Facility. The flat roof was patched this year but needs to be addressed. Daleiden said it is critical that the office roof and windows are repaired. Sawatzke asked whether Randy Engel’s report was reviewed. Daleiden said it has been and will be discussed at the next Building Committee Meeting. Engel would like the County to have someone out for more investigation of the roof. Daleiden did not think there was value in paying someone to tell the County what is already known. The County’s Building Maintenance Supervisor has suggestions on what can be done with the windows.
Sawatzke said that if the Public Works Building comes in around $17 million, there may be some extra funding available for these repairs. Mattice said the flat roof on the shop is estimated at $440,000 and the office building roof and windows are estimated at $228,000. Vergin said costs in 2017 include the renovation of the Parks & Surveyors Building ($1,304,520). She said that was identified in the Master Plan. Vergin said there are significant building needs moving forward.
Sawatzke referenced the Capital Improvement Plan handout and asked about dollar figures which remain consistent in years 2016-2017. Vergin stated that dollar figure placeholders are reflected in the report. These figures were included to identify unknown future needs, knowing there will be a need but not knowing what that amount is. She said they can be removed from the report if desired. Daleiden said if the amount is not used, it can always be moved to a future year. It is for planning.
d. Department Specific
Assessor: The $138,450 identified for Computer Aided Mass Appraisal System will be completed in 2016 (2015 Funding) and relates to Tax and CAMA Software rebuilding. Daleiden said this could be pushed to 2017. L. Kelly said this is one of the projects that the CIP was created for, as the funding flows over several years. Sawatzke referenced the projected $50,000 cost in 2016 and asked what that relates to. Tagarro said other than the rewrite of the Tax and CAMA Systems, he is unfamiliar with other projects. It was the consensus that the $50,000 would be removed from Year 2016.
Attorney: Jworks is identified in 2016 at $65,000 which was the original estimated cost. Hohl has since learned the cost will be $75,000. It will allow the Attorney’s Office the ability to efile in 2016, which is being required by the Tenth Judicial District. It was the consensus to change the amount to $75,000 for 2016.
Sawatzke referenced the placeholders for the various listed departments (highlighted in yellow). He said doing so could result in most departments having placeholders in the CIP. Vergin said the purpose was to identify that there will be additional expenses long term but the amounts are not budgeted. Sawatzke said the CIP should include projects. He understands including projected amounts for building maintenance. Vergin said dollars listed in the Enterprise Fund are earmarked and identified as ongoing costs for projects. It was the consensus to remove the figures highlighted in yellow from the “Department Specific” portion of the CIP handout under Assessor and Auditor/Treasurer as there are no associated projects. Ongoing operational costs should be funded by specific budgets.
Highway: Vergin said the bond figure for the Public Works Project is $17 million in 2015. In 2016, the Old Impound Lot Building ($15,000) will be repurposed; in 2017, there will be a new Outlying Shop ($1 million); and in 2020 a Salt Shed in Waverly is planned ($150,000). Those are new items added to the CIP this year. In response to Sawatzke, Hawkins said the Impound Lot Building is not laid out well for purposes of the Highway Department. One improvement will be an overhead door for vehicles. Hawkins referenced the $1 million for the French Lake Shop. If it is decided to go with a larger Public Works building, a consideration may be to reroute vehicles and eliminate the French Lake Shop. Daleiden thought that decision should be delayed to the future, possibly 2018. Hawkins said the County will incur maintenance expenses as a result, and will have to check with staff as to what that might entail. There is a hoop building at that location. It was the consensus to move that decision to 2018, providing time for a more informed decision on what is happening with the new Public Works building. The targeted move in date for that facility is 8-01-16. Sawatzke thought the $15,000 identified for repurposing of the Impound Lot could possibly be taken from the bonds for the Public Works Project. Daleiden suggested sending to the Building Committee the French Lake Shop Maintenance Issues and the Repurposing of the Impound Lot. Hawkins can check with staff on maintenance items and the Building Maintenance Supervisor on any HVAC issues.
Human Services: In 2016, additional costs will be incurred for the EDMS project ($150,000) and the Public Health Info System ($12,100). In 2016, there is a new AGC Call Center Project (215,085) identified in the CIP. It is unclear whether it will remain in the CIP because of the funding mechanism. The intent is to push the call system to the remainder of the HS Department in 2016. The system provides better call management, cueing, and the ability to roll calls from a desk phone to a cell phone. Daleiden said it is a tool to improve customer service and efficiency. There will be ongoing maintenance and phone costs.
Parks: Projected costs include $1.18 million in 2016, $2.01 million in 2017, $770,000 in 2018, and $1.365 million in 2019. In 2016, the County will be responsible for a match for Bertram Chain of Lakes Phase 9 ($205,000). The Schroeder Parking Lot & Fish Clean House ($85,000) could be funded from the Campground Improvement Fund. This type of funding is not available for the Collinwood Park improvements. Mattice was asked to prioritize the projects for the Parks budget discussion. Daleiden suggested taking funds designated for Montissippi Park and moving them to Bertram Chain of Lakes Park. Mattice said they hope to complete minor development with local share funding. Grant funding will be sought for major projects. Montissippi Park is not a regional park and is ineligible for grant funding. The goal is to leave access parking as is but the upper lot will be moved. It is a gravel lot. Mattice said the projects have been prioritized by the Parks Commission in the Strategic Plan.
Recorder: Vergin said the Land Records EDMS Project is ongoing, with associated costs of $65,000 in 2016; $60,000 each in 2017 and in 2018; $50,000 in 2019; and $40,000 each in 2020 and 2021.
Surveyor: The CIP does not include an estimated cost for the Land Records Imaging Pilot. Jobe explained that survey records include miscellaneous sizes of paper records. There are companies that specialize in imaging land and survey records. Jobe plans to utilize a pilot project on these different types of records with the goal being to image historical records. The Department will plan to image as they move forward by scanning documents. Sawatzke thought a vendor could provide a sampling of what can be done at no cost. Tagarro said that Benton County could be contacted on details of their records imaging project in the Recorders Office. Tagarro would like more discussion as they move forward including placing these records into a separate imaging system. Vergin said a project like this is an example of what should be sent to the Technology Committee.
Vergin said for the period of 2015-2021, the total estimated cost for improvements in the CIP is roughly $37 million.
2. Funding Sources/Uses of the Funds (attached spreadsheet)
Vergin referenced the last page of the spreadsheet which reflects projected year-end fund balances. Figures for anticipated revenues are included. Vergin said there will need to be discussion on funding. She said the Auditor/Treasurer will need to be part of that discussion to determine the status of year-end figures (i.e., transfers in, whether there will be levy dollars to fund the CIP).
a. CIP Technology Fund – Turn back and budgeted dollars
• Enterprise Initiatives
• Department Specific Technology Initiatives
In 2015, $100,000 was budgeted for the CIP Technology Fund.
b. CIP/Stabilization Fund – Turn back and budgeted dollars
• Building/Facility Needs
• Park Funding
Vergin said this relates to building needs and parks projects. There was a balance of 88,664 which was split evenly between Parks Improvements and Building Needs. In 2014, there was a $900,000 allocation split evenly between the two areas and no additional dollars were levied. The funds will always operate in the red because of the needs. Vergin said some of the discussion will be how to continue to fund these projects and prioritization of projects moving forward.
c. Recorder’s Compliance Fund – Fees collected by the Recorder
• Land Records
Vergin said State Statute reflects how funds can be expended and the minimum fund balance required, based on the way fees are collected. Vergin said the fund balance should not fall below $60,000. She suggested discussion on how to continue to fund projects, what the appetite of the Board is to prioritize, and review of needs moving forward.
Sawatzke questioned whether there is anything in the Recorder’s Compliance Fund, the CIP Technology Fund, or the CIP/Stabilization Fund that would qualify for funding under the Recorder’s Technology Fund. Vergin said that can be reviewed. The current projects in the Recorder’s Compliance Fund relate to EDMS and PH-Docs for Human Services.
d. Recorder’s Technology Fund – Fees collected by the Recorder
• Records Management
• CAMA/Xerox Systems
• Recorder and Surveyor Projects
Vergin said State Statute reflects how funds can be expended and the minimum fund balance required, based on the way fees are collected. Vergin said the fund balance should not fall below $500,000.
Discussion included utilizing funding from the Recorder’s Technology Fund when possible. Tagarro said there may be some Enterprise Projects that will evolve to Land Records. Sawatzke said the County Board will want to know whether projects highlighted in the handout as yellow are eligible to be funded through the Recorder’s Compliance or Technology Funds. That will be useful information during the budget process. Nelson said that a portion of network storage may be able to be allocated to the Recorder’s Technology Fund. Tagarro said that may be the case with other technology related items if the costs are associated with all departments. Daleiden said this funding should be used whenever possible.
e. Bonds/Equipment Certificates – Funds borrowed
• Public Works Facility
Vergin explained that there are currently no equipment certificates. Bonding of $17 million relates only to the new Public Works Facility. Principal and interest are identified at an estimated $1.2 million after the first year. The amounts were based on data provided to the County by Springsted (Bond Advisor). It does not include other bond indebtedness by the County.
3. Next Steps
Sawatzke said the CIP will assist the Board in knowing the needs during upcoming Budget sessions. It was the consensus of the CIP Committee that the revised CIP Plan should be presented during Budget sessions.
(End of 6-30-15 Capital Improvement/Finance Committee Minutes)
A Personnel Committee Meeting was held on 7-08-15. At today’s County Board Meeting, Husom moved to approve the Minutes and recommendations, seconded by Borrell. Kelly made the following correction to the Minutes: Item 3, 3rd paragraph, remove the sentence, “The employee on leave will be placed in a comparable position upon their return.” Sawatzke noted that there will not be an increase in the staffing level of the Auditor/Treasurer’s Office. Husom and Borrell amended the motion to include the change to the Minutes as requested by Kelly. The motion carried 5-0. The Personnel Committee Minutes follow:
I. Child Protection Staffing (HHS Board)
II. Request to Increase Hours of Vacant Family Health .7 FTE Public Health Nurse Position to Full-Time (HHS Board)
III. Office Technician I, License Bureau
Hiivala asked to add an Office Technician I (OT I) position to the License Bureau. One employee is currently on leave, with no return date set at this time.
Sawatzke asked whether a temporary employee could be hired for the duration. Aanerud said the challenges with this option are that temporaries cannot work more than 67 days, training takes at least a month, and requires a significant investment of staff time.
Hesse said the new OT I is for the purpose of getting work done in the License Bureau.
Sawatzke said the request is approved, but is not to be construed as an increase in the staffing level of the Auditor/Treasurer’s Office. The number of FTEs will remain as is.
Recommendation: Authorize hiring an Office Technician I in the License Bureau.
IV. Assistant Finance Director, Auditor/Treasurer
Hiivala said the Assistant Finance Director position is an unfilled vacancy. Sawatzke said this position was eliminated from the budget. Hiivala said he has tried to get by with his current accounting staff. He said the upcoming budgetary process justifies this position. In addition, redeterminations, buffer strips, and other tasks will require a lot of staff time.
Sawatzke said he would like to see this request proceed through the budget process.
Recommendation: The request will be presented during 2016 budget sessions.
(End of 7-08-15 Personnel Committee Minutes)
Advisory Committee/Advisory Board Minutes
1. Nuclear Exercise. Husom said the mock nuclear exercise held on 7-07-15 went well. Another exercise will be held in August.
Bills Approved
Ameripride Services $840.59
Annandale Rock Products 554.39
APEC Industrial Sales & Services 496.00
Aramark Services Inc. 7,306.15
Aspen Equipment Company 365.28
Association of MN Counties 125.00
ATOM 900.00
Beaudry Propane Inc. 104.00
Boyer Truck Parts 205.35
Buff N Glo Inc. 158.08
Buffalo Auto Value 266.98
Buffalo/City of 62,250.37
Burdas Towing 352.00
Bureau of Crim. Apprehension 120.00
Center Point Energy 3,869.66
Centra Sota Coop - Buffalo 1,759.80
Climate Air 276.70
Collins Brothers Towing 176.00
Corporate Payment Systems 1,108.91
Cotten/Daniel 110.00
Cottens Inc. 2,535.71
Creative Forms & Concepts 1,218.02
Culligan of Buffalo 300.00
Department of Public Safety 8,310.00
Diamond Mowers Inc. 499.66
Dune Temporary Tattoos Inc. 524.84
Engel/Dale L. 375.00
Farm-Rite Equipment Inc. 304.68
First Choice - St. Cloud 102.20
Gabriel/Cathleen 100.00
General Rental Ctr. of Monti 110.00
Grainger 725.29
Green Interiors 450.00
GTS Educational Events 150.00
Helena Chemical Company 604.80
Hiivala/Robert 137.00
Hillyard Inc. - Miinneapolis 2,747.68
Holmquist/Barb 302.65
Intoximeters Inc. 259.25
Jeddeloh & Snyder PA 600.00
John E. Reid & Associates Inc. 770.00
Larson/Elizabeth 110.00
MailFnance 2,466.27
Menards - Buffalo 979.01
Mend Correctional Care LLC 21,829.33
Metro Group Inc/The 1,975.20
MN Sheriffs Association 400.00
Morries Parts & Service Group 353.60
Office Depot 500.66
Office of MN IT Services 2,100.00
Omann Brothers Inc 88,822.62
Prima 385.00
Quick Stand Inc 100.00
Ridley/Glenda 212.75
Rinke-Noonan 727.00
Royal Tire Inc 1,112.72
Ruttgers Bay Lake Lodge Inc 578.58
Sawatzke/Pat 243.50
Schluender Construction Inc 200.00
Sigma Aldrich Inc 144.98
Sirchie Finger Print Laboratories 109.67
Stearns County Auditor-Treasurer 725.00
Stericycle Inc 316.32
Suburban Tire Wholesale Inc 3,924.43
TC Orca 280.00
Tester/Josh 110.00
Timekeeping Systems Inc 606.39
Tires Plus 243.73
United Parcel Service 114.09
Waste Management of WI-MN 3,541.99
Waste Management-TC West 471.58
WSB & Associates Inc 950.49
Young/Mike 711.88
35 Payments less than $100 1,832.38
Final total $239,651.21
The meeting adjourned at 11:10 A.M
Published in the Herald Journal Aug. 3, 2015.