Wright County Board Minutes

JANUARY 12, 2016
The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Husom, Sawatzke, Daleiden, Potter and Borrell present.
Borrell moved to approve the 1-05-16 County Board Minutes as presented, seconded by Daleiden. The motion carried 5-0.
Potter added Items For Consideration E, “Met Council Urban Boundaries.” Daleiden moved to approve the Agenda as amended. The motion was seconded by Husom carried 5-0.
On a motion by Potter, seconded by Husom, all voted to approve the Consent Agenda:
1. Approve MCIT 2016 Property Casualty & Workers Compensation Insurance Renewal for a total of $1,120,458.
1. Approve Renewal of 2016 Tobacco Licenses for: City of Albertville: EBACCO, LLC.
1. Approve Claims as Listed in the Abstract, Subject to Audit, for a Total of $1,956,661.80 with 140 Vendors and 190 Transactions.
1. Position Replacements: A. Social Worker B. Financial Worker C. Financial Worker D. Financial Worker
1. Position Replacements: A. Two Deputy Positions
Approve Engagement Letter for 2015 Audit Services by the Office of the State Auditor.
Hiivala presented an Engagement Letter with the State Auditor’s Office for 2015 Audit Services for a one-year period (2016). In the recent past, CliftonLarsonAllen has performed audit services for Wright County because of cost. However, the State Auditor’s Office has not released Wright County from this service in 2015. Recent changes in law require the County to declare to the State Auditor by June, 2016 a request to be released for the 2017 audit. Another formality is that the State Auditor’s Office is requesting an audit entrance meeting and an audit exit meeting. It was the consensus that the Board can convey the County’s budgeted figure for the audit to the State Auditor representatives during that meeting. Daleiden moved to approve the Engagement Letter with the Office of the State Auditor for 2015 Audit Services. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0.
Hiivala requested a Committee Of The Whole Meeting with the State Auditor’s Office for an Audit Entrance Meeting. Borrell made a motion to schedule the Meeting for 1-26-16 at 10:30 A.M., seconded by Husom. The motion carried 5-0.
Adopt Resolution Awarding Sale of General Obligation Capital Improvement Plan Bonds, Series 2016A.
Terry Heaton, Springsted, said a bond sale was held on 1-11-16 for $7,040,000 in General Obligation Capital Improvement Plan Bonds, Services 2016A, for funding the new Highway Department Building Project. Eight bids were received, with the low bid from Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. The County holds an AA+ Standard & Poor’s Rating. The bonds received a 2.2462% true interest rate, which is 67 basis points lower than estimated a month ago at 2.91%. This saves about $500,000 in interest costs. Another strategical move in bonding for this project involved two bond issuances. In total, $16,610,000 was issued overall for this project which is about $400,000 less than anticipated. At the recommendation of Heaton, Daleiden moved to adopt Resolution #16-03 awarding the sale of General Obligation Capital Improvement Plan Bonds, Series 2016A, in the original aggregate principal amount of $6,875,000 to Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried 5-0 on a roll call vote.
Approve Fiscal Agency Agreement Regarding Capital Improvement Plan Bonds, Series 2016A.
Daleiden moved to approve the Agreement with Associated Trust Company, National Association, Green Bay, Wisconsin. The motion was seconded by Potter and carried 5-0.
Approve Rinke Noonan 2016 Retainer Agreement Renewal.
Rinke Noonan has been on retainer for ditch items since 2012. Borrell moved to approve the Agreement Renewal with Rinke Noonan for 2016, seconded by Daleiden. It was agreed that the retainer of $200/month is a phenomenal deal for Wright County. The motion carried 5-0.
Approve Contract for Indirect Cost Allocation Plan Preparation with De Novo Consulting Solutions, LLC.
Maximus has provided Indirect Cost Allocation Plan preparation for Wright County for many years. One of their employees started their own company and a quote was submitted to Wright County. The cost for Maximus is $5,800 for three years, and the cost received from De Novo Consulting Services is $4,495 for three years. On a motion by Daleiden, second by Husom, all voted to approve contracting with De Novo Consulting Solutions, LLC for the Indirect Cost Allocation Plan Preparation at a cost of $4,495 for 2015, 2016, and 2017.
Approve Two (2) $150 Change Funds for the Parks Department.
Hiivala requested the Board approve two already established change funds the Parks Department has in the amount of $150 each. Borrell moved to approve the change funds, seconded by Daleiden, and carried 5-0.
Approve November Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report.
Daleiden moved to approve the November Revenue/Expenditure Budget Report, seconded by Borrell, and carried 5-0.
1. Accept the findings and recommendation of the Planning Commission to accept the zoning amendments as follows:
ADD THE FOLLOWING TO SECTION 762.2 Solar Energy Farms Requirements and Standards: Solar Energy Farms and Systems will be considered by the Planning Commission on restricted parcels of land zoned General Agricultural (AG).
ADD THE FOLLOWING TO SECTION 762.3 Solar Energy Systems Requirements and Standards Solar Energy Systems will be considered by the Planning Commission on restricted parcels of land zoned General Agricultural (AG).
Riley said the areas most impacted by the proposed Zoning Ordinance amendments are located southeast and north of Buffalo (Buffalo Township, Rockford Township, Franklin Township, Woodland Township, Monticello Township, Maple Lake Township, Otsego, St. Michael and a small area by South Haven). The amendment relates to making an exception to allow solar farms on restricted agricultural land. Husom said a question voiced by one of her townships is why solar farms would be allowed on restricted agricultural land but other uses are not. Considerable discussion occurred on the 1 per 40 entitlement in the Ordinance and how land use is restricted when a portion of the land is mortgaged. Also discussed was whether solar energy systems would remove prime crop land from production. Borrell said solar farms may actually protect land from being changed into other uses such as housing. It was agreed that there are unknowns moving forward. Husom supported moving forward cautiously. The Aurora Project, regulated by the State, may not have resulted in the best experience for Buffalo Township so the Township has voiced concern with the proposed changes to the Ordinance. Daleiden understands people wanting to use their property how they see fit, but wants to assure that changes will not affect other property owners or set a precedence for other types of requests. Discussion also included cell towers, setbacks from neighboring properties, property uses, and the unknown of how many solar energy projects will be requested.
Sawatzke questioned whether staff could provide additional information to the Board. He suggested a study of one quarter of a township to show the impacts from the proposed amendments to the Ordinance. Riley said they could develop a database which would include the amount of restricted land and number of entitlements.
Gordy Simonson, Solar Stone, referenced a proposed project in Cokato Township that he is involved with. He has met or been in contact with 17 of the 18 townships in Wright County. He said only one of the townships voiced dissention. He did not view that the requests for solar energy farms would be excessive. Projects are required to be within Xcel Energy’s footprint, which is primarily located along Highway 12 and I-94. Relative to the proposed project in Cokato, Solar Stone’s facility must be 1⁄4 mile from the transmission line. Xcel substations have limited capacity, and upgrades to substations are expensive. It was discussed that the cost of upgrade could be through a developer, Xcel Energy, or the government. Sawatzke said the number of inquiries in the past couple of years has been substantial given solar energy farms were not on the radar several years ago. He said substations can be changed and it is reasonable that the increase in capacity at the substation could be subsidized, potentially by a third party.
Borrell referenced how solar farms will allow land to remain prime farm land, will be environmentally friendly (vegetative cover), and will generate solar tax revenue for the County and the township involved. He said the Planning Commission will vet requests and impose restrictions or setbacks as necessary.
Daleiden moved to table this issue to the 1-19-16 County Board Meeting to allow for additional review, seconded by Husom, carried 5-0. Staff from the Planning & Zoning Office will present information at the next meeting on Solar Energy Farms.
Daleiden moved to appoint Wayne Bauernschmitt (Albion Township) to the GRRL Board of Trustees for a three-year term. The motion was seconded by Borrell and carried 5-0. The Board reaffirmed the appointments of Dan Bravinder (Cokato Township) and Jim Shovelain (St. Michael) through 12-31-16.
Husom made a motion to cancel the 3-15-16 County Board Meeting due to the occurrence of five Tuesdays in March. The motion was seconded by Borrell and carried 5-0.
Discussion occurred on the months of May, August, and November. It was suggested that this topic be laid over to a future meeting for additional information on the date of the May AMC Conference.
Husom moved to authorize attendance at the DNR Buffer Mapping Webinar which will be held in Room C118 at the Government Center. The motion was seconded by Potter and carried 5-0. Township Officers will be invited to this meeting.
Potter moved to authorize attendance, seconded by Husom, and carried 5-0.
Potter moved to authorize attendance at the Meeting on 1-21-16 at 4:00 P.M. in Albertville. The motion was seconded by Husom and carried unanimously.
1. Owners Committee. Potter said the Owners Committee approved change orders that were critical and within the dollar amount that the Committee can approve. The Owners Committee Minutes will be presented at a future date for Board approval.
Bills Approved
American Tower Corporation $12,616.42
AMI Imaging Systems Inc 2,600.00
Autumn Ridge Landscaping Inc 28,500.00
Axel H Ohman Inc 183,777.50
Beaudry Propane Inc 2,641.60
Borrett/Jim 100.00
Buffalo Auto Value 764.08
Buffalo/City of 32,239.09
Burdas Towing 210.00
Bureau of Criminal Apprehension 240.00
CDW Government Inc 4,758.20
Centra Sota Coop - Buffalo 16,071.52
Central MN Fabrication Inc 570,670.06
Chamberlain Oil Co 519.95
Compass Minerals America Inc 16,450.93
Corporate Payment Systems 4,579.76
Culligan of Buffalo 300.25
Databank IMX LLC 77,819.00
Dell Marketing LP 1,167.68
Department of Public Safety 8,310.00
Design Elect. Inc-Cold Spring Elec. 130.00
Donlar Construction Company 24,962.78
E2 Electrical Services Inc 174,015.93
Excel Systems 240.00
Fabcon Precast LLC 114,950.00
Force America Inc 336.70
Franz Reprographics 229.94
Glunz Construction Septic Serv 130.00
Grainger 124.16
Granite Electronics 346.05
Hagen, Christensen & McIlwain 14,606.34
Holiday 10,297.32
Holiday Companies 486.00
Indelco Plastics Corp 128.60
Integrated Fire & Security 654.00
Interstate Automotive 250.00
J&Bb Equipment Company 80,797.50
Karels Towing 164.00
Klatt True Value Electric 106.20
LaPlant Demo Inc 1,239.93
MACO 2,500.00
MailFinance 2,466.27
Marco 902.55
Maximum Solutions Inc 3,150.00
Maxx Steel Erectors Inc 86,569.70
McMaster-Carr Supply Co 176.16
Mend Correctional Care LLC 27,529.33
Midway Iron & Metal Co Inc 507.77
MNn Onsite Wastewater Assn 630.00
Morries Parts & Service Group 1,617.42
Mueller/Craig 104.17
Mulcahy Nickolaus LLC 9,574.10
NADA Appraisal Guides 186.00
National Assn of Cty Engineers 595.00
Office Depot 1,681.31
Peterson/Wallace 100.00
Premier Biotech Labs LLC 2,479.34
Regents of the University of MN 565.00
Royal Tire Inc 366.97
Russell Security Resource Inc 110.00
Russell/James 125.00
State Wide Protective Agency 312.50
Summit Fire Protection 18,284.50
Triplett/Keith 100.00
Waste Management-TC West 587.55
Weidner Plumbing and Heating 321,576.90
West Payment Center 198.38
Wright County Journal Press 129.69
Wright Soil & Water Cons Dist 83,638.00
30 Payments less than $100 1,366.70
Final total $1,956,661.80
The meeting adjourned at 10:33 a.m.
Published in the Herald Journal Feb. 1, 2016.