Wright County Board Minutes

OCTOBER 28, 1997

The Wright County Board met in regular session at 9:00 A.M. with Russek, Rose, Mattson, Jude, and Sawatzke present.

Motion to approve the minutes of 10-21-97 as presented was made by Russek, seconded by Jude, carried 5-0.

Petitions were accepted to the Agenda as follows: Aud./Treas. Item #2, "Set Communications Committee Meeting" (Groshens); Aud./Treas. ltem #3, "Ditch 33 NSP Damage & Repair" (Sawatzke); ltem For Consid. #3, "TH241 and TH55 Corridor" (Rose); ltem For Consid. #4, "Refer to Ways & Means Committee Discussion RB: Changes in Misdemeanor Prosecution" (Wyman Nelson); Item For Consid. #5, "Set Deferred Compensation Meeting" (Wyman Nelson). Jude moved to approve the Agenda as amended, seconded by Rose, carried unanimously.

The Consent Agenda was reviewed. Jude acknowledged the $4,765.00 from the Maple Lake School District for their participation in the DARE and GREAT program. On a motion by Jude, second by Russek all voted to approve the Consent Agenda as follows:


1. Claim, Frank Madden, $2,722.94; Notice of Rate Increase.

2. O/T Report, Period Ending 10-17-97.


1. Auth. Diane Palmer to work full time for balance of 1997 commencing 11-3-97.


1. Approve Termination of Employment for Michael Schnackenberg, Maintenance Person, Eff. 10-10-97 & Auth. Replacement.


1. Auth. Betty Stueven to work out of classification as Clerk 11, Eff. 9-26-97 during FMLA for two employees in Recorder's Office.


1. Acknowledge $4,765.00 check from Independent School District #881 (Maple Lake) for reimbursement for Deputy assigned to D.A.R.E. and G.R.E.A.T. for the 1996-1997 school year.

Sheriff Don Hozempa presented Dennis Groth a retirement plaque, thanking him for his years of service. Groth has been employed with Wright County since 1975 and worked in various positions including Patrol, Dispatch, and most recently as a Bailiff.

Darla Groshens, Auditor/Treasurer, then presented lnez Quist with her retirement plaque. Quist was employed with Wright County in 1976 part time, and was hired as the Lead Clerk in the License Bureau in 1990.

On a motion by Russek, second by Sawatzke, all voted to cancel the County Board meeting of Nov. 11.

A Personnel Committee meeting was held on 10-22-97:

Performance Appraisal - Tom Salkowski, Planning & Zoning Administrator. Based on the review of four performance appraisals submitted, the Committee recommends an overall rating of "Superior" for this review period.

Staffing Problems, Sheriff Dispatch. Thinesen summarized current staffing levels and compared them with other counties. He also discussed the number of staff on prolonged leave due to illness. The request is for one full time Communication Office to work the "power shift." Norman asked how long this has been a problem. Thinesen responded that it has been a problem for about the last year, but it has been increased with the recent illnesses. Sawatzke stated that this should have been discussed with the Budget Committee Of The Whole when the 1998 budget requests were reviewed. In response to a question from Norman, Lindell responded that some of the work load is seasonal in nature. Recommendation: Do not add to the full time staff complement since the 1998 budget reviews have been completed. Sheriff Department staff shall work with Norman to review contract language with the idea of hiring a seasonal employee.

Casual Dress Day Policy. Norman stated the current Policy No. 512 outlines the organizations expectations regarding employee dress. Current policy allows departments to have a designated "casual" dress day. He stated that this summer numerous questions and complaints were received regarding employees coming to work on casual dress day wearing shorts, sandals, etc. Rose and Sawatzke agreed that this attire is unacceptable in the work place. They also agreed that blue jeans are inappropriate except for custodians and when environmental health officers and building inspectors are performing field work. The consensus of the Committee is to revise the current policy to define a casual dress policy and to not allow a casual dress day. The policy will be discussed with department heads at the next leadership Team meeting scheduled for 8:15 A.M., Thursday, November 6, 1997. Action by the County Board will follow this meeting.

At today's meeting, Sawatzke moved to approve the minutes, seconded by Jude, carried unanimously.

Ways & Means Committee meeting was held on 10-22-97:

Personal Watercraft Ordinance. The Committee reviewed a letter from the DNR which outlines the amendments to the personal watercraft laws which they are seeking. These amendments include mandatory safety certificates for operators, increasing the 100 foot slow-no wake distance to 200 feet from shore and/or allowing personal watercraft operation only during the hours of 10:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M. (or sunset), whichever occurs first. The Legislature has not acted on these proposed amendments. After discussion, all in attendance agreed that our local ordinance should be amended to incorporate the slow-no wake distance of 200 feet from shore and the operating hours as recommended by the DNR. The Attorney s Office will draft a new ordinance. Neighboring counties, cities which have a lake entirely within their city limits, and lake associations will be notified of the proposed changes. A public hearing, possibly in the evening, will be scheduled to receive public input on the proposed ordinance amendments.

Tobacco Access Law. A new state law regulating retail tobacco sales became effective August 1, 1997. lt requires all cities or counties to adopt specific regulation regarding the sale of tobacco products. The county must implement a licensing system for retailers located in cities and townships that do not have a valid licensing ordinance. Law enforcement agencies or an employee of the licensing authority are responsible for conducting at least one unannounced compliance check per year of each tobacco retail outlet. It was the consensus of the Committee that the Auditor/Treasurer Department issue licenses. Groshens will survey cities and townships to see if they intend to implement the law or if they want the County to administer the program for them. A Task Force comprised of the Ways & Means Committee, Asleson, Groshens, Young, and a representative from the Mayor's Assoc., and Township Officers Assn. will continue to work on this issue. A draft ordinance will be developed by the Attorney's Office.

At today's meeting, Rose moved to accept the minutes, seconded by Russek, carried unanimously.

At the request of Groshens, Rose moved to set a Communications Committee meeting on 11-12-97 at 1:30 P.M., seconded by Sawatzke, carried 5-0. The Committee will discuss the battery backup of the E911 System.

Sawatzke was notified by a resident of Monticello Township that damage occurred in two locations of Ditch #33 while NSP was repairing power lines in the Monticello area. Sawatzke has been in contact with a representative of NSP who indicated that they will pay for the cost of repair. Sawatzke moved that through Groshens, the County should receive at least two quotes for repair of the areas and to accept the lowest amount, which will be passed onto NSP. Motion carried 5-0 on a second by Jude.

The claims listing was reviewed. Groshens corrected a claim on page 2, the claim payable to MAUMA should instead be payable to Jim Elmquist. On page 3, Groshens said the claim for Ken Jude's mileage should be moved from the Assessor's claims to the County Board's claims. On a motion by Jude, second by Rose, all voted to approve the claims as listed in the abstract subject to audit.

Sheriff Don Hozempa was presented a plaque for the use of the Road Block Spike Systems by Kevin Otto of Professional Safety (the distributor) and Ardishar Dhondy (the manufacturer). They commended Hozempa and the staff of the Sheriff Department for their proactive approach in use of the spike system. Wright County Sheriff's Office is believed to be the first in the country to have a road block spike system in the trunk of each patrol car. Hozempa thanked the Board for their authorization to purchase spike systems for all of the squad cars. The system has successfully stopped approximately 15 cars thus far without any property damage resulting, with the exception of tire replacements.

Dave Lindberg, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, requested approval of two easements for wetlands owned by David Bajari and Rita Bajari, Annandale and William Bajari, Annandale. Two water control structures will be installed on the partially drained wetlands. Jude moved to approve signatures on the easements, seconded by Sawatzke, carried unanimously.

Brian Asleson, Assistant County Attorney, read and requested the Board adopt the Findings of Fact and Conclusion RE: Petition for EAW on Maria Country Estates Development. After Board approval, the Findings of Fact will be forwarded to the Environmental Quality Board and will be published in their State Register. The developers will be required to work with the Planning & Zoning office to put together an Environmental Assessment Worksheet. The decision will be brought back to the County Board whether the EAW is sufficient and whether there is a need for an Environmental lmpact Statement. Russek said he will vote against the request as he feels this is a waste of resources. Jude clarified his position. He said he concurred with Russek's position, but will use this case as an example for future requests. Sawatzke did not feel that was appropriate and felt each should be reviewed on their own merits. Sawatzke moved to adopt the Findings of Fact requiring as EAW, seconded by Rose, carried 4-1 with Russek casting the nay vote.

At 9:45 A.M., Wayne Fingalson, Highway Engineer, requested that the Board approve awarding Contract 9712, Victor Twp. Bridge Improvement Project, S.A.P. 86-599-17, to Landwehr Construction, lnc. At their bid of $61,920. Bids were opened at the last County Board meeting. The Township approved the bids and the agreement at their meeting last night. Russek moved to award the bid to Landwehr Construction, Inc., seconded by Rose, carried 5-0.

The Board recessed at 9:45 A.M. and reconvened at 9:55 A.M.

Bill Stephens, Planning & Zoning, asked for acceptance of a draft of a Feedlot Ordinance. This was the recommendation of the Feedlot Committee who also requested that the draft ordinance be sent to Committee.

Stephens explained that three public informational meetings would be held at various locations in the County for comment. The Feedlot Committee would meet again to review the comments, to possibly revise the ordinance, and to bring the ordinance back before the Board for approval. Jude voiced frustration on the required registering of animal units. He envisioned that the process of revising the ordinance was to relate to large feedlots. The proposed ordinance would require reporting when there are 10 animal units or more. He felt this was governmental intrusion and reached beyond what the County Board should be doing. An example used by Jude was that 10 acres is considered a farm, but reporting for 50 ducks seemed ridiculous. Discussion involved how problems can occur whether it be a large or small operation. Russek, being a member of the Feedlot Committee, supported the proposed ordinance and said they are not asking for approval today. He asked that each of the Board members, as well as members of the Feedlot Committee, try to attend the three public meetings. Discussion followed on whether the proposed ordinance would stand alone or be a part of the Water Management Ordinance. Response was that the Committee felt the document would stand alone but it would be tied in to work with other ordinances. Discussion also included major growth areas (page 12, Item b4), which states that no new feedlots or feedlot expansions shall be allowed in "Major Growth Areas". Sawatzke clarified that a major growth area is actually a zoning area in close proximity in cities and is an area that will be annexed into the city. Jude moved to acknowledge the report, not accepting or recommending it, and to send it to Committee. Motion seconded by Russek. Russek said the ordinance was not in final format. The Board requested that more factual information be provided. Mattson also requested that minutes of the meetings be supplied. Motion carried 5-0. Russek moved to authorize the Planning & Zoning Office to locate and set up three sites for the public meetings around the County. Motion seconded by Rose. The motion also acknowledges that more than two Board members may be in attendance at these meetings. Motion carried 5-0.

Rose said she has been in attendance for both the Hwy. 55 and TH 241 Corridor meetings. Both of the committees are active and will have public meetings.

At the request of Wyman Nelson, Jude moved to refer discussion of Misdemeanor Prosecution to the Ways & Means Committee, seconded by Sawatzke, carried unanimously.

On a motion by Rose, second by Sawatzke, all voted to set a Deferred Compensation Meeting for 11-4-97 at 11:00 A.M. at the request of Wyman Nelson.

Bills Approved

Advantage Emblem Inc 800.83

AMI Imaging Systems Inc 132.00

Assn of Minnesota Counties 175.00

Betmar Languages inc 290.32

Buffalo Emergency Physicians 134.50

Computer Parts & Services Inc 666.69

Decorative Designs Inc 167.18

GE Capital Info Tech Solutions 126.74

Humane Society of Wright Cty 102.50

Institute for Forensic Pshchol 650.00

Michael MacMillan 300.08

Marco Business Products, Inc 575.10

MCP Carstar Collision Center 1606.13

Northern States Power Co 264.14

Jason Peck 207.39

Clinette Pomerleau 103.85

Sherwin-Williams 383.19

Total Printing 1667.79

Uniforms Unlimited, Inc 327.25

WalMart Store 01-1577 161.99

Wright County Highway Dept 1602.66

Wright Hennepin Electric 396.45

Albertville Body & Fender 594.00

Annandale Rock Products 182.12

AT&T 6900.10

Buffalo Drug 530.78

Camsac Software 100.00

Cummins Diesel - North Central 719.50

Emed Company Inc 502.66

Hillyard Floor Care Supply 1564.40

Inmac 187.51

Ken Jude 114.70

Marco Business Products 201.40

Martin Publishers 159.48

National District Attys Assn 210.00

Office Depot 786.17

Pitney Bowes 160.55

Ruttger's Bay Lake Lodge 203.30

Total Petroleum Inc 133.32

Trophies Plus 117.94

US West Communications 680.11

Luann Winterhalter 119.00

Wright County Human SErvices 1712.00

Xerox Corporation 539.26

36 payments less than $100 1,710.18

Final total $28,970.26

The County Board adjourned at 10:45 A.M.

Dick Mattson, Chairperson


Richard W. Norman

County Coordinator

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