WRIGHT COUNTY BOARD MINUTES
SEPTEMBER 22, 2015
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Sawatzke, Husom, Daleiden, Potter and Borrell present.
Husom moved to approve the 9-15-15 County Board Minutes. The motion carried 5-0 on a second by Daleiden.
REVIEW AND APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Borrell moved to approve the Agenda as presented. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0. Bob Hiivala, Auditor/Treasurer, requested his Agenda items include discussion on rescheduling the Deferred Compensation Committee Meeting scheduled for 9-23-15 at 1:30 P.M. Daleiden made a motion to amend the Agenda as requested. The motion was seconded by Sawatzke and carried unanimously.
Sawatzke removed for discussion Consent Agenda Item E2, “JADE ZACHMAN (Silver Creek Twp.) Planning Commission Recommends On A 5/2 Vote The Property Be Rezoned From AG General Agriculture To B-2 General Business.” It was decided to discuss the item after the scheduled timed items because of the potential for lengthy discussion. Sawatzke moved to approve the balance of the Consent Agenda (not including Consent Item E2), seconded by Daleiden, carried 5-0.
1. Authorize Using The Services Of Fogarty Auction / Fred W. Radde For The County Auction On 10-17-15
2. Authorize Signatures On Law Enforcement Contract With The City Of Otsego, Effective 1-01-16 to 12-31-17
1. Approve Claims As Listed In The Abstract, Subject To Audit, For A Total Of $265,628.22, With 202 Vendors And 389 Transactions
C. HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES
1. Position Replacement:
A. Office Technician II
D. INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
1. Authorization For New External Phone Line (DID) for IT Help Desk
E. PLANNING & ZONING
1. Authorize Signatures On New MN Department Of Agriculture Cooperative Agreement For Waste Pesticide Collection
3. MARYANN A. PETERSON (Rockford Twp.) Planning Commission Unanimously Recommends The Property (Approx. 39 Acres) Be Rezoned From AG General Agriculture To A/R Agricultural-Residential And A Rural Planned Unit Development District
SARAH CHUR, REGIONAL DIRECTOR, CENTRAL UNIVERSITY OF MN EXTENSION
Presentation Of 4-H Related Work
Kelly Strei, 4-H Program Coordinator, presented information on the Rube Goldberg Teams, which is a program created for youth, grades 3-8, to learn engineering concepts. The goal is to encourage critical thinking, creativity, innovation, and problems solving in a non-traditional learning event and have fun at the same time. Participants apply STEM knowledge to solve problems by identifying and researching, then making and implementing a plan to design a solution. Wright County had the largest amount of teams participate in the State, including 7 teams from 4-H Community Clubs and 1 team from an after school site. There were 5 teams that advanced to the MN State Fair with 2 teams receiving the highest honor Chatham Climbers and Hanover Honeybees. The County Board extended congratulations.
Adopt Resolution Declaring October 4-10, 2015 As National 4-H Week In Wright County
Borrell moved to adopt Resolution #15-51, declaring October 4-10, 2015 as National 4-H Week in Wright County. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
BOB HIIVALA, AUDITOR/TREASURER
Adopt Resolution Approving Repurchase Of PID # 155-139-001110 (Monticello)
Brian Asleson, Chief Deputy Attorney, said the property was classified as non-homestead residential when it became tax forfeit. The property is owned by two family members that purchased the property for residence by their mother. Once repurchased, the property will be sold as the mother is no longer living. Asleson stated that since it is a non-homestead property, the repurchase period is limited to 5 years. He anticipates the complete repurchase could occur in the next year. All back taxes must be paid in order to obtain the State deed. The following corrections were made to the draft resolution: Item 2, 4th line, change to “$4,380.83”; Item 2, 5th line, change to “$17,523.36”; Item 3, 3rd line, change to “administrative fee of $140.00”; Item 5, change to “City of Monticello.” Daleiden moved to adopt Resolution #15-52 approving the repurchase of PID #155-139-001110 (Monticello). The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Rescheduling the Deferred Compensation Committee Meeting scheduled for 9-23-15 at 1:00 P.M.
At the request of Hiivala, Sawatzke moved to cancel the Deferred Compensation Committee Meeting on 9-23-15 at 1:30 P.M. and reschedule it for 9-29-15 at 10:30 A.M. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0.
ITEMS FOR CONSIDERATION:
RESOLUTION SETTING THE DRAFT 2016 BUDGET AND CERTIFIED LEVY (KELLY)
Lee Kelly, County Coordinator, requested approval of a resolution setting the draft 2016 Budget and Certified Levy, which must be set prior to 9-30-15. Daleiden moved to adopt Resolution #15-53 setting the draft 2016 budget at $110,309,723 and the draft 2016 certified taxable levy at $55,432,065. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
SCHEDULE SPECIAL COUNTY BOARD MEETING RE: 2016 BUDGET AND LEVY (KELLY)
Husom made a motion to schedule the County Board Meeting for the 2016 Budget on 12-01-15 at 6:00 P.M., County Board Room. The motion was seconded by Borrell and carried unanimously.
SCHEDULE COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE COMMITTEE RE: AGRICULTURAL DEED RESTRICTIONS (BORRELL)
Borrell said that when this issue came up with the Solar Ordinance, the result was the requirement for a Conditional Use Permit and a building eligibility requirement. He requested a Committee Of The Whole (COTW) Meeting to discuss this process. It was suggested that someone knowledgeable on the law should be invited to attend. The Board also requested an executive overview on the process for solar energy farm applicants who bypass the County and proceed to the State. Sean Riley, Planning & Zoning Administrator, explained this is essentially a local level issue relating to the Zoning Ordinance and would be a County Board decision. The Board would also like information presented on what restrictions are in place under Federal agricultural programs. Sawatzke made a motion to schedule a COTW Meeting on 10-06-15 at 1:00 P.M. to address deed restrictions relating to solar farms and on Federal farm restrictions. The motion was seconded by Daleiden and carried 5-0.
JADE ZACHMAN (Silver Creek Twp.) Planning Commission Recommends On A 5/2 Vote The Property Be Rezoned From AG General Agriculture To B-2 General Business
Sawatzke was contacted by a neighbor to the Zachman property advising they would like to be able to have more discussion on the rezoning request. He said the Public Hearing process through the Planning Commission has closed on the rezoning request but his mindset is that these are public meetings.
Greg Kryzer, Assistant County Attorney, provided an opinion that when the County is dealing with a zoning matter with an official public hearing and an official public comment process, once that comment process is closed the people in the community feel it is closed. If the County Board would re-open that process, there is the potential situation where someone may have attended the Board Meeting had they known that the Board was taking additional comment. Kryzer said in the interest of fairness, if the Board is going to open public comment that the public hearing should be re-opened with 10 days’ notice. The most cautious approach would be to re-notify as the public hearing process is closed.
Potter asked whether there was something material missing during the public hearing process. Kryzer responded that there were 2-3 public hearings held and a site inspection. There is an extensive record on file. Sawatzke said he accepts that opinion but has the mindset that with public meetings, there is the ability to allow the public to speak. He said Kryzer raises a good point about others not coming to the meeting because they thought the process had closed. Sawatzke asked if the County Board were to decide to extend the public hearing option for 10 days, could they receive testimony today. Kryzer recommended that the Board hold off taking comment for the 10-day period. At that time, they can open the public hearing and allow testimony. Daleiden asked whether public comment was received during the public hearing. Kryzer responded they had extensive comment. Kryzer said the record officially closed with the Planning Commission on 9-10-15. There were four public hearings with the first being 5-21-15 and the last on 9-10-15. He said there was extensive public comment during those hearings. Borrell serves on the Planning Commission and said this request was well vetted. He was unsure whether there was new evidence that had not been presented.
A resident said she lives 10’ from the property and was not notified. She was unaware of the meeting on 9-15-15. The last information she knew was that the applicant was to go back to Silver Creek Township with their plan. She said they had no idea the last meeting was occurring.
Riley said that neighbors are notified of the first public hearing. When the hearings are continued, the public is notified that additional notices will not be provided. He said this request went to Silver Creek Township twice. The Township provided initial information that wasn’t clear, so the applicant was required to go back to the Township. That caused some of the delay and further continuations. Borrell said he is not opposed if the Commissioners want to hear testimony. He thought the County Board would come to the same conclusion. He said the vote at the Planning Commission level was not totally unanimous. Sawatzke referenced the 5-2 vote at the Planning Commission. He said some things in Planning & Zoning are considered black and white and others are gray. Ultimately, the County Board is the final authority. He said it is reasonable to expect that citizens may potentially want to approach the final authority. Sawatzke referenced the property and the outdoor storage of granite and stone. He has also received emails on dust problems. Borrell said this was discussed at the Planning Commission and these types of things will be looked at during the CUP process. He thought that if this were done correctly, the final outcome may be more acceptable.
Daleiden made a motion to table the rezoning request for Jade Zachman to the 10-06-15 County Board Meeting at 9:30 A.M. The motion was seconded by Sawatzke. Sawatzke said this brings up the issue of how to handle this process in the future. Kryzer suggested referring that discussion to the 10-06-15 Committee Of The Whole Meeting. Borrell wanted to make sure that the motion maker and second are understanding that part of the motion is to open this for public comment two weeks from now. Sawatzke said that is the intent. A resident in the audience said that the property owner has started excavation and moving dirt. She questioned whether they are required to stop. Sawatzke thought that a property owner would have the right to move dirt on their property. Riley asked for clarification of the concern. Sawatzke said the resident may feel Zachman is doing something he has not been given zoning approval to do. Riley said it is unclear whether something has begun or if it is speculation.
Potter stated that it is the public’s responsibility to follow the path of the meetings. There is one-time legal notice required. He said the applicant is due the process. They followed the steps and public hearings were held through the Planning Commission. It was voted on by the Planning Commission and recommended to the County Board. He viewed this as circumventing the whole process, and that may not sit well with those on the Planning Commission who have spent the time going through that process. Riley said it is hard to provide a response since he was not notified by the neighbor of their concerns prior to the County Board Meeting. The motion to table the rezoning request to the 10-06-15 County Board Meeting carried 3-2 with Potter and Husom casting the nay votes. Discussion followed on what type of activity is occurring on the applicant’s property. Mr. Zachman stated that he is cutting brush to see the lay of the land. Sawatzke said that whether or not the applicant is applying for a permit, he has the legal right to cut brush down.
Sawatzke made a motion to add to the 10-06-15 Committee Of The Whole Meeting discussion on the process for handling rezoning requests that are forwarded by the Planning Commission. The Meeting is scheduled for 1:00 P.M. Husom seconded the motion and it carried 5-0.
REQUEST FOR SUPPORT FROM THE MAPLE LAKE LIBRARY (KELLY)
Kelly said correspondence was received from the City of Maple Lake and Friends of the Maple Lake Library requesting a 2016 contribution of $12,500 (as was done in 2012). Sawatzke made a motion to send a letter to the City of Maple Lake advising them that the County Board will contribute $12,500 in 2016 for support of the Maple Lake Library. The motion was seconded by Borrell. Daleiden asked whether the Maple Lake Library is the only independent library in the County. Sawatzke stated that the Maple Lake Library attempted to become a part of the Great River Regional Library (GRRL) system but was denied. At that time, the Maple Lake Library was started. They received a grant and contribution from Wright County. He hopes that at some point the Maple Lake Library can receive some type of assistance from the GRRL, whether that be through the use of a kiosk or book drop off location. Borrell hopes Potter will convey that message to the GRRL. Potter said that is why there is a 2% increase in contribution to the GRRL by member counties. The first step will be working toward the use of kiosks and drop off locations.
ADVISORY COMMITTEE / ADVISORY BOARD UPDATES
1. AMC Fall Policy Meetings. Daleiden attended last week, as he serves on the Health and Human Services Board. Discussion included the simplification of State processes. The State plans to complete a cost analysis of HHS programs. The State of Washington completed an analysis and found a cost benefit that ranged from 4% to 100% (benefits exceed cost). It is his understanding that the State’s software system does not have the information available to do something like this. He prefers the State review the software Washington State is using versus building its own system. Mental health issues were also discussed at the Fall Policy Meetings.
2. Borrell said that at the last County Board Meeting, discussion occurred on depression and suicide prevention. Several people have since approached him on making a contribution to the purchase of the bench outside of the Government Center that will be engraved with “In Memory Of Those Lost To Mental Illness.”
3. Great River Regional Library Board. A meeting was held on 9-15-15. Topics included personnel changes and the City of Sartell’s request for a Library. The GRRL provided the City with options for size and location that would meet the GRRL parameters. On a 3-2 vote, the City rejected both. Sawatzke said for the past number of years, library usage has dropped substantially across the country. He thought it would be an irresponsible use of taxpayer dollars to build an old fashioned library in light of the changing way in which libraries are used. He said residents of Sartell have the ability to access a library 6-7 miles away through public transportation. They could be offered an alternative type of service (kiosks and drop off locations).
4. AMC Conference.
• Potter said there was a joint session with the areas of agriculture, transportation, and environmental. He said 18 States have joined against the EPA’s authority on the Waters of the U.S. He anticipates receiving a request to support a resolution that will request action by the Attorney General to join. Borrell said 13 States have an injunction against the implementation. Potter said the Attorney General indicated it wasn’t a high priority on the list. He thought basically all 87 counties were on board that the Attorney General should move forward because of the major effect it having in some areas. Potter viewed it as an overreach of the EPA’s authority. Sawatzke said that the EPA overreach was a topic of discussion last evening at a meeting at the Becker Community Center. There was discussion on EPA’s new rules for the Sherco Power Plant relating to coal and pollution and emissions. He said the City of Becker is supportive of the facility. He anticipates Sherburne County may request Wright County’s support of a resolution to the Attorney General, who makes the decision on whether this is challenged. His concern is that the EPA’s plan is too large and too fast and will have a devastating impact on the Becker community.
• Potter said the Transportation Policy Committee has concern with the MN Rural Counties Caucus. The group represents small counties and has a lobbyist who has been working behind the scenes against the transportation bill. The bill did not pass last year. It was learned that smaller counties in northern Minnesota don’t feel they received enough from it, so Legislators were encouraged not to vote in support of it. He said they will need to work on educating people that going forward is better than sitting neutral.
5. Mayor’s Association Meeting. Husom attended a meeting on 9-16-15. It was a different forum than in past as they traveled to various businesses within Wright County and also utilized the Trailblazer Transit.
6. MN Rural Counties Caucus. Potter attended a meeting on 9-16-15 at Breezy Point.
1st Choice Movers LLC $15,322.50
Accurate USA 121.50
AFIX Technologies Inc 4,888.00
Ag Neovo Technology Corp. 143.00
American Databank LLC 374.00
Ameripride Services 475.99
Anoka County Fiscal Services 13,354.00
Anoka County Sheriff 27,861.05
Aramark Services Inc 23,395.60
Arctic Glacier USA Inc 591.12
Boyer Truck Parts 10,307.72
Buff N Glo Inc 178.28
Buffalo Auto Value 1,004.99
Buffalo/City of 2,135.55
Careertrack Inc 358.00
CDW Government Inc 874.00
CenturyLink (Hwy use) 231.29
CES Imaging 152.87
Chamberlain Oil Co 503.42
Climate Air 8,408.69
Community Lawn Care 171.93
Compass Minerals America Inc 5,739.99
Dell Marketing LP 1,182.69
Dynamic Recycling 2,832.53
Emergency Automotive Tech 366.70
Emerg. Comm. Network LLC 4,310.00
Greenview Inc 20,901.39
Intereum Inc 11,429.14
Keeprs Inc 101.49
Kris Thompson 407.09
Kustom Signals Inc 180.00
Laplant Demo Inc 750.83
Martin-McAllisters Consulting 2,250.00
McCarthy Well Company 230.00
McLeod Co. Auditor-Treasurer 18,130.12
Menards - Buffalo 183.28
Metro Group Inc/The 4,380.40
Milana P Tolins LLC 300.00
Mini Biff LLC 757.01
MN Assn of Co. Feedlot Officers 150.00
MN Assn of Co. Probation Ofcrs 490.00
MN Assn of Co. Surveyors 250.00
MN Counties Computer Coop. 1,323.75
MN Dept. of Labor & Industry 2,798.61
Office Depot 4,426.11
Potter/Michael J 266.00
Ray Allen Mfg Co Inc 195.74
Richards/Thomas W 400.00
Royal Tire Inc 1,655.43
Schermann/Robert D 255.00
School District No 877 22,314.48
Select Account 1,484.10
SHI International Corp 243.00
St Cloud Stamp & Sign Inc 169.15
Steve O Septic 513.00
Thompson/Janet A 640.00
Traffic Marking Service Inc 2,809.51
Twin City Process Service LLC 135.00
United Parcel Service 194.38
Verizon Wireless 10,384.60
West Payment Center 1,238.90
Wright Henn. Coop Elec Assn 5,398.01
Wright Hennepin Electric 505.95
WSB & Associates Inc 2,744.62
23 Payments less than $100 1,288.10
Final total $265,628.22
The meeting adjourned at 10:24 a.m.
Published in the Herald Journal Oct. 12, 2015.