Most recently approved County Commission Minutes

 

Mercer County Commission

Minutes

July 18, 2018

 

The meeting was called to order at 9:00 a.m. by Chairman Duane Scheurer with the meeting being videotaped. Present were Commissioners Gary Murray, Wes Gunsch, Dwight Berger, Wayne Entze, and Auditor Shana Brost. Others present during portions of the meeting were: Ashely Miller, Cyndi Zueger, Wanda Knutson, Darbie Berger, Jessica Binder, Dean Danzeisen, Marvin Schwehr, Rylan Sundsbak, Sarah Flath, Eric Urness, Ken Miller, and Daniel Arens of BHG News.

  1. moved to approve the agenda with the addition of job postings. Gunsch seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

Murray moved to approve the minutes from the July 9th meeting. Gunsch seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

Entze moved to approve the bills, excluding the Treasurer’s bills. Murray seconded. The following vouchers were approved for payment: ADVANCED BUSINESS METHODS $332.98; AED EVERYWHERE $199.75; AMERICAN WELDING & GAS $130.85; BAUER BUILT $574.00; BI INCORPORATED $15.90; BINDER, JESSICA $195.63; BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD OF ND $68,275.70; BRONSON'S MARKETPLACE $131.53; BUTLER MACHINERY $628.50; CBM MANAGED SERVICES $1,630.00; CENTER MACHINE $154.54; CHESROWN FARM SUPPLY $240.00; ND CHILDREN & FAMILY SERVICES $300.00; CITY OF GOLDEN VALLEY $79.00; COFELL'S PLUMBING & HEATING, INC. $1,754.40; COLONIAL RESEARCH $231.13; CORNER EXPRESS $33.82; D & E SUPPLY $719.86; DAKOTA PROMOTIONS $135.09; DIRECTMED $67.75; DON'S AUTO GLASS & REPAIR $748.68; ELECTION SYSTEMS & SOFTWARE, LLC $2,417.48; ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATIONS $6,063.56; FIRE EXTINGUISHING SYSTEMS INC. $239.90; WEX $3,973.78; GUNSCH, WESLIE $186.45; HAZEN DRUG $421.38; HAZEN WELDING $253.00; HOMEWOOD SUITES BY HILTON $92.49; INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY DEPARTMENT $911.60; J & M HARDWARE $399.42; JENSENS $45.00; JOHN DEERE FINANCIAL $3,837.50; JOHNSON, KATHY $132.00; KEMMET, DENA $475.00; LANGUAGE LINE SERVICES, INC. $90.00; MAIL FINANCE $582.87; MATTHEW BENDER & CO., INC. $354.46; MENARDS $507.17; MIDCONTINENT COMMUNICATINS $277.54; MURRAY, GARY $141.30; NAPA $14.09; NADACO %911 PAYMENT $936.98; ND DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH $18.75; ND INSURANCE DEPARTMENT $8,731.71; ND STATE RADIO $720.00; NDPOA $215.00; NORTHWEST TIRE $24.86; OK AUTOMOTIVE $450.59; PHARMCHEM, INC. $599.55; PLATINUM MOTORSPORTS $5,557.00; REAL COLORS $625.00; ROCKMOUNT RESEARCH & ALLOYS $621.89; ROUGHRIDER ELECTRIC $965.36; SCHEURER, DUANE $221.05; SOUTHWEST BUSINESS MACHINES $148.99; CHI ST ALEXIUS HEALTH CLINIC $60.00; ST ALEXIUS MEDICAL CENTER $477.75; STAPLES $2,453.64; TRANE $759.20; UNIFORM CENTER $563.93; VERIZON WIRELESS $34.84; WRT $3,031.06. Entze, Murray, Gunsch, Scheurer voted aye. Berger No. Motion carried.

Gunsch moved to approve the Treasurer’s bills. Entze seconded. The following vouchers were approved for payment: SOUTHWEST BUSINESS MACHINES $15.68; WRT $106.60. Murray, Gunsch, Entze, and Scheurer voted aye. Motion carried.

Gunsch moved to approve the pledges of securities presented by Treasurer Berger to the following institutions:

Union State Bank - $2,559,241.46; The Union Bank - $600,000.00; Capital Credit Union - $100,000.00. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

Gunsch moved to approve a resolution concerning the boat wake/speed limits on the Missouri River. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. The resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION

WHEREAS, the Missouri River and some of its tributaries are currently near flood stage as the US Army Corps of Engineers passes excess water through the Garrison Dam, and high water levels in the River are expected through most of the summer of 2018;

WHEREAS, to reduce bank erosion and private land destruction, the North Dakota Game and Fish Department has established boat wake/speed limits for portions of the River as it traverses Burleigh County and Morton County, North Dakota;

RESOLVED, The Mercer County Board of Commissioners respectfully requests the North Dakota Game and Fish Department extend the Burleigh-Morton high water boat restrictions all the way to the Garrison Dam.

Dated this 18th day of July, 2018.

/s/Duane Scheurer, Chairman

/s/Gary Murray, Commissioner

/s/Dwight Berger, Commissioner

/s/Wes Gunsch, Commissioner

/s/Wayne Entze, Commissioner

Entze moved to approve June Sheriff’s fees in the amount of $5932.68. Berger seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

Murray moved to approve June Recorder’s fees in the amount of $6120.50. Gunsch seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

The Board visited with Sheriff Danzeisen about the purchase of new jail radios. Danzeisen stated the old analog radios were interfering with the cameras in the jail, therefore were a necessity. Scheurer asked Danzeisen about selling the Golden Valley house. He stated he doesn’t see getting rid of it just yet because he is still short staffed and is using as a recruitment tool. Danzeisen added deputies can hook up to the internet out there and send paperwork back to the office since the Wi-Fi is secure with their own IP address. Scheurer stated there is a Golden Valley resident that would like to rent it for four (4) months and wondered if that was okay and what the rent would be. Danzeisen said sure and they have rented it for $450/month. Gunsch moved to rent the Golden Valley house for $450 a month until the individual does not need it, subject to finalizing the lease. Murray seconded. Berger stated the county will rent it for a few months and then will be stuck paying for the heat during the winter months. Berger added he is not against renting it but thinks it should be put up for sale now. Gunsch stated he agreed with Berger and asked Danzeisen to come to the board if he decides it is no longer needed so they can put it up for sale. Gunsch, Murray, Entze, and Scheurer voted aye. Berger no. Motion carried.

The board reviewed the monthly financial statement. No further action was taken.

The board reviewed the landfill tonnage report. No further action was taken.

The board reviewed the NDSU Extension Highlights. No further action was taken.

Cyndi Zueger, Tax Director/Land Use Administrator, presented one (1) zoning case to the board.

Coteau Properties: Temporary Use #523 for drilling test holes for coal exploration and monitoring well installation in Section 6 T145N R85 W, Section 31 T146N R85W, Sections 1,2,3,10,11,12 T145N R86W, and Section 35, 36 T146N R86W. Work is limited to daylight hours. The area disturbed under this temporary use permit must be reclaimed by the applicant and must be approved and released by the County Road Superintendent. The haul road must be approved and released by the County Road Superintendent. The permit holder shall control weeds in an acceptable manner during the time this permit is in effect. Subject to finalization of authorization for access by landowners. Gunsch moved to approve Temporary Use #523 on condition that all landowner access is secured. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

Gunsch moved to close the bids for the Countywide Patching and Striping. Entze seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

Eric Urness, Interstate Engineering, opened and read the following bids aloud:

Bituminous Paving $391,270.52

Northern Improvement $298,356.12

Urness noted the engineer’s estimate for the project was $287,000. Entze moved to table the award until the next meeting after the bids are reviewed. Berger seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

The board reviewed the outstanding road accounts. No further action was taken.

Ken Miller, Road Superintendent, discussed the ag permits with the board. Miller stated there have only been two (2) current ag permits issued which allows from 80,000 to 90,000 lbs. except during frost laws. Miller stated they need to get the word out there that ag permits are required to haul in excess of 80,000 lbs. Gunsch stated it wouldn’t be a bad idea to put something in the paper.

Miller stated DGC has a gas valve west of County 11 and asked the county road to blade it but the section line is gated and locked. Entze stated law enforcement will have to take care of it because it cannot be locked.

The board briefly discussed 2019 salaries. No further action was taken.

Carmen Reed, Emergency Manager/911 Coordinator, met with the board to go over her proposed 2019 budget. No further action was taken.

Gunsch moved to recess the regular meeting and open the public hearing for Coteau’s petition to close a public road and setback waiver petition. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. No public was in attendance to be heard for or against the two (2) petitions. Murray moved to close the public hearing and reconvene regular meeting. Entze seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

Gunsch moved to approve the petition to close a public road. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. The resolution reads as follows:

RESOLUTION OF

MERCER COUNTY COMMISSION

WHEREAS, The Coteau Properties Company ("Coteau") has petitioned the Board of County Commissioners of Mercer County, North Dakota ("Commission") to temporarily close the following described section line road that interferes with surface coal mining operations pursuant to the provisions of Chapters 38-01-07.1 and 38-01-07.2 of the North Dakota Century Code:

The section line road between the SW1/4 Section of 3 and the NW1/4 Section of 10, and the west 660 feet of the section line road between the SE1/4 of Section 3 and the NE1/4 of Section 10, Township 145 North, Range 88 West;

WHEREAS, a public hearing was held upon the Petition of Coteau before the Commission on the 18th day of July, 2018, at 10:45 CDT, in the Courthouse in the City of Stanton, North Dakota, and the Commission having heard and considered all of the testimony and evidence presented.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Commission does hereby find, conclude, and determine as follows:

  1. That the Commission has jurisdiction over the subject matter of the Petition and the section line road involved therein.
  2. That the Notice of Hearing on said Petition was duly served and published as required by law.
  3. That the temporary closing of said section line road is necessary due to the fact that said section line road interferes with Coteau’s conduct of surface coal mining operations.
  4. That said section line road is not required due to readily accessible alternate routes of travel.
  5. That the temporary closing of said section line road does not deprive adjacent landowners access to their property.
  6. That a public benefit exists in temporarily closing said section line road and that the interests of the public and affected landowners will be protected.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, based on the foregoing, that the Commission hereby determines and orders as follows:

 

  1. That the following section line road be temporarily closed until such time as Coteau’s surface coal mining operations which affect the use of said section line road by the general public are completed:

    The section line road between the SW1/4 Section of 3 and the NW1/4 Section of 10, and the west 660 feet of the section line road between the SE1/4 of Section 3 and the NE1/4 of Section 10, Township 145 North, Range 88 West;

    1. That Coteau provide farmers access to their lands for farming purposes during the time that said section line road is temporarily closed.
    2. That within a reasonable period of time after completion of surface coal mining operations Coteau shall restore said section line road to as good a condition as existed prior to the temporary closing to the extent required by the Commission.
    3. That Coteau inform the Commission when the restoration of said section line road is completed, at which time Coteau shall tender said section line road to the Commission for acceptance for general public use.
    4. That the Commission may at any time exercise its rights to monitor the continued need for the temporary closing of said section line road and may request Coteau to show cause why said section line road should not be reopened if surface coal mining operations in the vicinity thereof have been completed.
    5. That this Resolution, the Petition involved therein, the Affidavits of Service and the Affidavits of Publication of Notice of Hearing be filed with the Mercer County Auditor.

    Dated this 18th day of July, 2018.

    /s/Duane Scheurer, Chairman

    /s/Gary Murray, Commissioner

    /s/Dwight Berger, Commissioner

    /s/Wes Gunsch, Commissioner

    /s/Wayne Entze, Commissioner

    Attest: Shana L. Brost, Auditor

    Entze moved to approve the setback waiver petition. Gunsch seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried. The resolution reads as follows:

    RESOLUTION OF

    MERCER COUNTY COMMISSION

    WHEREAS, pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 38-14.1-07(04) of the North Dakota Century Code and Chapter 69-05.2-04-01.1(3)(b) of the North Dakota Administrative Code, The Coteau Properties Company (“Coteau”) petitioned the Board of County Commissioners of Mercer County, North Dakota (“Commission”) for permission to conduct surface coal mining operations within 100 feet of the outside right-of-way line and within the right-of-way line of the following public road:

    The west side of County Road 15 located within the S1/2 Section of 3, Township 145 North, Range 88 West.

    WHEREAS, a public hearing was held upon the Petition of Coteau before the Commission on the 18th day of July 2018, at 10:45 CST, in the Courthouse in the City of Stanton, North Dakota, and the Commission having heard and considered all of the testimony and evidence presented;

    WHEREAS, the Commission has jurisdiction over the subject matter of the Petition and the public road and right-of-way stated therein;

     

    WHEREAS, the Notice of Hearing on said Petition was published as required by law; and

    WHEREAS, the interests of the public and the interests of affected landowners will be protected.

    NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Commission does hereby approve the conducting of surface coal mining operations, except actual coal removal, by Coteau within 100 feet of the outside right-of-way line and within the right-of-way line of the following public road:

    The west side of County Road 15 located within the S1/2 Section of 3, Township 145 North, Range 88 West.

    BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this Resolution, the Petition involved herein, and the Affidavits of Publication of Notice of Hearing be filed with the Mercer County Auditor.

    Dated this 18th day of July 2018.

    /s/Duane Scheurer, Chairman

    /s/Gary Murray, Commissioner

    /s/Dwight Berger, Commissioner

    /s/Wes Gunsch, Commissioner

    /s/Wayne Entze, Commissioner

    Attest: Shana L. Brost, Auditor

    Berger discussed how job postings are done internally and externally. He stated he would like to see more consistency throughout the county on how they are posted.

    Berger, Entze, and Scheurer gave their portfolio updates. Gunsch and Murray had nothing to report.

There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 11:07 AM. The next special meetings to discuss budget will be held on July 24th and July 25th beginning at 9:00 AM in the board room of the Mercer County Government Center. The next regular meeting is scheduled for August 1, 2018, at 9:00 AM in the board room of the Mercer County Government Center, Stanton, North Dakota.

 

 

Approved: Duane Scheurer, Chairman

Attest: Shana L. Brost, Auditor

 

 

 

 

 

Mercer County Commission
Special Meeting Minutes
July 24, 2018

 

The special meeting was called to order at 9:00 AM by Chairman Duane Scheurer with the meeting being videotaped. Present were Commissioners Wes Gunsch, Gary Murray, Wayne Entze, Dwight Berger, and Auditor Shana Brost.

Gunsch moved to approve the agenda. Entze seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

The board discussed the county budgets with Auditor Brost. The board added $50,000 under the miscellaneous miscellaneous account for Park in Lieu Of funds.

The board met with Sheriff Danzeisen next to discuss the Sheriff, Task Force, Game & Fish, Youth Bureau, Public Safety Grant, Homeland Security, Rental Properties, Special Vehicle, Temporary Deputy, and Coroner budgets. Danzeisen stated he dropped his jail supplies budget line $35,000 because he will be cancelling his kitchen services contract. Danzeisen added they have a low number of inmates due to the issues he believes they are still having in the jail and doesn’t feel comfortable bringing in prisoners. Danzeisen added he spoke with the Federal Marshall about federal prisoners and he has agreed to allow Mercer County to just hold prisoners for trial and not release in Mercer County. Danzeisen noted until everything is working properly he is cautious in taking federal prisoners. Danzeisen stated the Mercer County Jail passed their inspection and they are the only ones who have ever gotten the exceptional mark. Scheurer asked Danzeisen if he is overstaffed due to the low number of inmates. Danzeisen stated he needs the same number of people since he operates 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Scheurer asked Danzeisen where he thought he could cut his budget and Danzeisen stated he could not lease anymore new vehicles. The board asked how many vehicles he had in his department and Danzeisen stated 14. Gunsch asked if employees could share vehicles and Danzeisen stated he doesn’t have a big enough department and once they start sharing he will have to replace them more often.

The board discussed the Youth Bureau budget. Gunsch asked Danzeisen for some statistics.

The board discussed the Task Force budget and asked what was all in it. Danzeisen stated it was for three (3) investigators and one (1) secretary.

The board discussed the Public Safety Grant. Danzeisen requested $30,000 and the board dropped it to $10,000.

The board discussed the Game & Fish budget, where an additional $115,000 was added to start a Fire and Rescue out of Beulah. Gunsch asked what the purpose was for Beulah to have a Fire and Rescue when they have one in Zap and Hazen. Danzeisen stated there has been years of discussion on it because of the delayed response time and there are more people in Beulah than Hazen that are willing to do it. Entze stated Zap didn’t cost Mercer County a dime and they have the Jaws of Life and a rescue truck, also located on the west end of the county. Entze added they are a quick response team. Entze noted $115,000 is a lot of money for only being 15 miles apart. Danzeisen stated nothing against Zap but wondered if they would have enough people to be there. Gunsch stated he would like to see the $115,000 struck from the budget.

The board discussed the Special Vehicle fund. Danzeisen requested $78,250 to cover the leases of the six (6) new vehicles and requested three (3) additional. Berger stated he didn’t know how the county could keep up with 14 vehicles in one department. Danzeisen stated he only has one and a half (1½) deputies on per shift.

The board discussed the County Coroner budget. Under the autopsy line item is $9,000 for county burials.

The board discussed the Temporary Sheriff’s budget.

The board discussed the Homeland Security Grant.

The board recessed at 11:02 AM.

The board reconvened at 11:07 AM.

The board met with State’s Attorney Binder to discuss her budget. Binder discussed court appearances and filings with the board. Gunsch asked to cut other salaries in half from $50,000 down to $25,000. Binder stated it could work.

The board discussed the Auditor’s budget with Auditor Brost.

The board recessed at 11:20 AM.

The board reconvened at 11:30 AM.

The board met with Tax Director/Land Use Administrator Cyndi Zueger. Zueger stated there were no changes made to the Planning and Zoning budget or the Land Use budget. Zueger added she would like to change her help from part-time secretary to a full-time deputy so she would be able to help assess. Berger stated he is not in favor of a full-time deputy. Zueger stated past Tax Director, Gary Emter, did it because he knew the county would responsible for all city assessing in Golden Valley, Pick City, Stanton and Zap. Gunsch stated he does think there should be a full-time deputy in that office for back up and the secretary, Jen Neumiller, is willing to start training when she is full-time. Gunsch noted every other office has a full-time deputy. Zueger added the past Tax Director currently had Neumiller doing more than secretary work.

The board recessed at 11:41 AM.

The board reconvened at 11:47 AM.

The board met with Clerk of Court, Wanda Knutson, to review her budget. Knutson stated she is going to apply for a grant for a new copy machine but would like $7,000 added to the budget if she does not receive the grant.

The board recessed at 11:59 AM.

The board reconvened at 1:00 PM.

The board discussed the County Road budget with Road Superintendent, Ken Miller. The board discussed the road projects for 2019 and reduced the Engineering fees by $258,000 and the Payments to Contractors by $1,796,600.

The board recessed at 1:38 PM.

The board reconvened at 1:45 PM.

The board met with Jim Albers to discuss the Janitor, Building Maintenance, and Risk Management budgets. Albers added $15,000 into renovation line for tearing down county property if needed.

There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 2:02 PM. The next special meeting to discuss budget will be held on July 25th beginning at 9:00 AM in the board room of the Mercer County Government Center. The next regular meeting is scheduled for August 1, 2018, at 9:00 AM in the board room of the Mercer County Government Center, Stanton, North Dakota.

 

Approved: Duane Scheurer, Chairman

Attest:Shana L. Brost, Auditor

 

 

 

Mercer County Commission
Special Meeting Minutes
July 25, 2018

 

The special meeting was called to order at 9:00 AM by Chairman Duane Scheurer with the meeting being videotaped. Present were Commissioners Wes Gunsch, Gary Murray, Wayne Entze, Dwight Berger, and Auditor Shana Brost.

Murray moved to approve the agenda. Gunsch seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

The board met with Recorder Brenda Cook to discuss her budget. Cook stated she would like to get part-time help starting in September and then have the position go to full-time to replace Deputy Kathy Schumann. Cook also requested a pay increase of $11,164.20, adding she is the lowest paid Elected Official, yet the longest one for Mercer County.

The board met with Treasurer Darbie Berger to discuss her budget. Berger requested her part-time secretary receive $1.00 more per hour and asked for an increase in her wages due to the extra work with the Truth in Taxation Statements. The board told Berger they would be discussing salaries while they discuss budget at the next meeting.

The board discussed the Landfill budget with Candy Strand. Strand informed the board she has about two to three years left in her current cell. Strand is also looking at increasing tonnage rates from $31/ton to $35/ton in year 2020. Strand noted she has $30,000 in two (2) lines items just set aside in case of emergency.

The board discussed the Weed Board budget with Chairman Don Reichenburg. Reichenburg asked the chemical line be reduced from $210,000 to $180,000.

The board recessed at 9:52 AM.

The board reconvened at 10:00 AM.

The board met with Ron Crowley to discuss the Veteran Services budget.

The board met with Dena Kemmet to discuss the Extension Agency budget, noting the JDA is looking to raise their rent in year 2020.

The board met with Keith Johnson to discuss the Custer Health budget. Johnson stated the grant monies he receives is down to 40% from 55% in previous years. Johnson added they are looking at giving a 4% increase for 2019. Scheurer stated the raises are quite high. Johnson stated he is competing with Bismarck/Mandan in the medical field and found it necessary to keep help.

The board recessed at 10:39 AM.

The board reconvened at 11:00 AM.

The board met with Buster Langowski, Superintendent of Schools. Langowski erroneously omitted $300 from the Registration Fee line, which was added into his budget. Langowski is budgeted at 27 hours per month for salary.

The board met with Stever Reiser, Dakota Central Social Services Director, to discuss the Social Services budget. Reiser stated DCSS has a shortfall of $48,000 in 2018 and will have a shortfall of $168,000 in 2019. DCSS has reduced staff by 2 ½ positions and both reductions were done in the Stanton office. DCSS is looking at giving a 1% increase for 2019.

The board recessed at 11:21 AM.

The board reconvened at 11:30 AM.

The board met with Linda Oestriech to discuss the Commission on Aging budget.

The board met with Beth Bruestle to discuss the McLean Mercer Regional Library budget.

The board recessed at 11:49 AM.

The board reconvened at 1:00 PM.

The board met with Blake Wiedrich and Lani Meyhoff to discuss the Mercer County Historical Society budget. Wiedrich is aware the $5,000 yearly allocation from the county ended in 2018 and asked the board if they would consider allocating additional monies in the future. Gunsch moved to allocate $2,500 to the Historical Society in 2019. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

Marv Sutheimer and Ron Muth presented the Mercer County Regional Airport budget to the board.

Ed Grunett presented the Water Resource District budget to the board.

Sarah Tunge presented the Soil Conservation District budget to the board.

The board recessed at 1:49 PM.

The board reconvened at 2:01 PM.

Marcia Steffen and Marcy Sailer presented the Ambulance budget to the board. Steffen noted they are looking at 3% increase in salaries plus additional adjustments.

There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 2:27 PM. The next regular meeting is scheduled for August 1, 2018, at 9:00 AM in the board room of the Mercer County Government Center, Stanton, North Dakota.

Approved: Duane Scheurer, Chairman

Attest:Shana L. Brost, Auditor