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Kittson County Board Proceedings February 28, 2023

Kittson County Board Proceedings
February 28, 2023

The Kittson County Board of Commissioners met, pursuant to adjournment on February 28, 2023 at 9:00 a.m.
The meeting was called to order by Chairperson Younggren. The pledge to the flag was given.
A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Olson and unanimously carried to approve the agenda with the additions of -DAV Van and Brady Martz -Auditor contract.
A motion was made by Commissioner Swenson, seconded by Commissioner Kraulik and unanimously carried to approve the Board minutes from the February 7, 2023 Board Meeting.
Sheriff Matt Vig presented for approval the estimate for a new squad vehicle, a 2022 Ford F-150 Supercrew from C & M Ford of Hallock for $52,000.00. During the discussion it was pointed out that there was a charge for wheelage tax of $10.00 which Kittson County has not enacted at this time. A motion made by Commissioner Gillie and seconded by Commissioner Olson to approve $51,990.00 for the vehicle purchase was passed unanimously. Vig will bring to the next Board meeting the estimates to equip the new vehicle.
Highway Engineer Andrea Weleski presented:
• Approval of County wide mowing bids-Bidding for Contract areas #1,4 and 8 was Olson Farms for $39,386.76 and for Contract areas #2,3,6 and 7 was River in a Valley Farms for $47,206.51. A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and passed unanimously to approve the bids as submitted.
• Approval of equipment rental bids-two spreadsheets listing the equipment bids submitted and the bid ranking based on the bids submitted were reviewed by the Commissioners. A motion was made by Commissioner Olson, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and carried on a 4-0 vote with Commissioner Kraulik abstaining from the vote to approve the bids and the ranking of the bids for equipment rental.
• Update on the Right of Way purchasing for SAP 035-610-016- No additions to mention regarding purchasing right of way. Commissioners were encouraged to reach out to landowners who have not returned their agreements. Concerns were raised that the project could push into harvest season or even into the 2024 construction season if the bid letting is held up due to landowners not signing their agreements. Discussions also covered tree removal as MNDOT has a defined removal time to address the long-ear bat nesting season. Still awaiting a meeting with KSWCD and the MN DNR on culvert sizing for the project. Initial costs for a phase1 archeological survey came in at approximately $9,000.00. Costs will increase if a phase 2 survey is needed.
• Approval of tractor bid- recommendation to approve True North Equipment bid for a 6155M tractor for $150,656.66. Discussion included the need of the loader, need for the tractor and was the tractor front wheel assist. A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Olson and unanimously carried to approve the bid of $150,656.66.
• Mower and hitch quotes have been moved to a later Board meeting.
Administrator Buhmann presented Resolution 23-3 Appointment of the State Commissioner of Transportation as an agent for Kittson County to accept Federal Aid Funds for transportation projects. A motion was made by Commissioner Olson, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and unanimously approved to appointment the State Commissioner of Transportation as an agent of the County.
Weleski was asked for input on the Watershed based Implementation Funding for County Ditch 19 and County Ditch 31/State Ditch 1. Both projects could receive this funding to off-set costs associated with stabilizing the slopes of the ditches mentioned.
Jeanna Kujava, Public Health shared a packet of information to the Commissioners which covered the powers and duties of a Community Health Board and the responsibilities of the local public health agency:
From Minnesota Statutes 145A.04-
(i) assuring an adequate local public health infrastructure by maintaining the basic foundational capacities to a well-functioning public health system that includes data analysis and utilization; health planning; partnership development and community mobilization; policy development, analysis, and decision support; communication; and public health research, evaluation, and quality improvement;
(ii) promoting healthy communities and healthy behavior through activities that improve health in a population, such as investing in healthy families; engaging communities to change policies, systems, or environments to promote positive health or prevent adverse health; providing information and education about healthy communities or population health status; and addressing issues of health equity, health disparities, and the social determinants to health;
Kujava presented on the evidence of effectiveness of healthy families and the home-visiting program. The Commissioners were also updated on the establishing of the Substance Abuse Prevention Taskforce (SAPT) in response to the funding that Kittson County is and will continue to receive from the opioids settlement funds and that there have been two meeting this year involving community leaders.
Jeremy Benson from the Kittson County Soil and Water District appeared before the Board to describe the two applications for watershed-based implementation funding available through the One Watershed One Plan (1W1P) program. The joint powers board for the watershed conditionally approved the applications pending county board approval of the following projects:
• County Ditch #19 grade stabilization for $100,000.00
• 1W1P funding of $38,750.00 with matching funds of $61,250.00 (includes purchasing of right of way land and repairs) to be covered under FY 2023
• County Ditch 31/SD1 bank stabilization
• 1W1P funding of $15,625.00 with matching funds of $4,375.00.00 to be covered under FY 2022
A motion was made by Commissioner Olson, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and unanimously approved the application for the funding.
Administrator Buhmann presented for approval Resolution 23-4 Acquisition and Public Use of tax forfeited parcel property PID # 38.0038600, legally described as Lots 7 & 8 Block 11, Original Lancaster, forfeited to the state for failure to pay property taxes on the 18th day of September 2022. Pursuant to Minnesota Statute 282.01 Subd. 1a. (a), the City of Lancaster, on September 12, 2022, made a request to Kittson County to withhold the parcel from sale or lease to others for six months during the withholding period the County Board may approve a sale or conveyance to the requesting party. Under Minnesota Statute 282.01 Subd. 1a. (3) provides for the conveyance of non-conservation tax-forfeited lands to governmental subdivisions for authorized public uses. A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and passed unanimously to approve Resolution 23-4.
Administrator Buhmann presented for approval the inclusion of the Tyler Payment system to the current Tyler software being installed to address our tax system. This module will allow taxpayers to view and pay their property taxes on-line. While there is no installation costs to the County, a service fee of 3.5% to use the credit card will be applied to users of the system. This will streamline the ability to pay property taxes on-line instead of sending user and tax information to a different site. A motion was made by Commissioner Younggren, seconded by Commissioner Gillie and approved unanimously to add the Tyler Payment.
A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Kraulik and unanimously carried to approve the Bills and Expense sheets.
Commissioner’s $245,988.15 Auditor’s 2/10/2023 $148,335.68
2/10/2023 $489.41
2/10/2023 $38,299.61
2/10/2023 $328,304.79
2/17/2023 $10,218.38
Meal Reimbursements $176.57 Per Diems Leon Olson $300.00
Loren Younggren $180.00
Presented for approval was a corrected five-year lease agreement with the United States Department of Agriculture for office space rent in the Kittson County Courthouse. The lease agreement is $16.70 per square foot, 3427 rentable square feet at a monthly payment of $4,769.24 or $57,230.90 annually. A motion was made by Commissioner Olson, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and passed unanimously to approve the lease agreement.
A Memorandum of Understanding regarding a physical needs assessment to be conducted by Johnson Controls, Inc. was presented. As the Board has been in discussions of possibly bonding for capital improvement projects this agreement will assist in providing estimates for the projects. A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Kraulik and unanimously carried to approve the memorandum of understanding.
Administrator Buhmann provided the following updates:
• Reminder of Ditch Authority meeting for March 13, 2023 at 11 a.m. for the Final County Ditch #8 redetermination
• North Red River Township meeting on March 21, 2023 at 11 a.m. (DNR staff will be in attendance)
• Update on 2018 and 2019 year-end Financial Statements publications-Both statements including the statement for 2020 have been published in both newspapers-Enterprise & North Star News. When the 2021 audit is completed we will advertise only in the second official newspaper-North Star News.
• Update on Association of Minnesota Counties Legislative Conference February 21-23, 2023-The in-person conference was cancelled with AMC canceling all the hotel reservations. Conference registration was not refunded as AMC was able to restructure the conference to a virtual presence. Commissioner Gillie and Buhmann were able to meet with Senator Johnson on Tuesday and Wednesday via zoom and Representative Burkel on Wednesday. Discussions included Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) increased reimbursement, support for increases in County Program Aid, broadband in greater Minnesota, possible bonding bills for the session.
• Shared MarKit Landfill 2021 Audit
• Shared annual report from Northwest Regional Development Commission
• Announced that the DAV van was expected to be in County this week.
• Asked for approval of the Brady Martz contract to complete 2021 audit in the amount of $28,500. A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and unanimously carried to approve the contract.
Committee reports: Commissioner Gillie reported on her attendance of the AMC legislative conference, attending the Minnesota Rural Counties Committee which discussed broadband in greater Minnesota earmarking $240 million in funding, the sharing of the Governors spreadsheet of bills being offered this session. First deadline for bills is March 10, 2023. Asking for a twenty percent increase in County state aid funding $140 million, currently see a two and half percent reduction. Attended Health and Human Services Committee, State Health Advisory Committee via zoom meeting with an introduction of the new Commissioner of Public Health who stated their mission is to bring services into the 21st century. Commissioner Gillie attended Aluma where there was a presentation by Dr. Chris Green on trauma informed care. Gillie will be taking the skill training being offered by Aluma. Commissioner Younggren and Gillie attended the AMC Minnesota Extension Committee meeting where Gillie nominated Clay County Commissioner Jenny Mongeau as Chairperson of the committee. Commissioner Younggren shared the winners of the Extension leadership awards with Cottonwood and Kandiyohi counties being named this year’s winners. Commissioner Younggren shared that he has attend the Substance Abuse Prevention Taskforce Committee (SAPT) with it’s second meeting being held last week. Younggren shared that he joined in on the AMC general session via zoom and information was shared on the paid family medical leave bills and the request for more local control pertaining to the legalization of marijuana. Younggren also shared attending the Kittson County Hospital shareholders meeting sharing information of the health services agency losing income and the possibility of the facility closing in three or four years. He also discussed the leadership transition plans taking place with the healthcare facility. Commissioners Olson, Kraulik and Swenson had no reports.
Under correspondence Administrator Buhmann shared the thank you letter he received from U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar for participating and sharing in the meeting held with Mattracks. Commissioner Younggren shared a request from the Hallock ambulance services asking for a letter showing the county support as needed for their annual audit. A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and approved unanimously to sign the letter outlining the county’s support.
A motion was made by Commissioner Olson, seconded by Commissioner Kraulik and unanimously carried to adjourn at 10:48 a.m. a.m.
Loren Younggren,
Kittson County Board Chair
ATTEST: Brian E. Buhmann,
Kittson County Administrator
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KITTSON COUNTY BOARD
PROCEEDINGS
March 7, 2023

The Kittson County Board of Commissioners met, pursuant to adjournment on March 7, 2023 at 9:00 a.m. Commissioner Younggren excused absence.
The meeting was called to order by Vice-Chairperson Kraulik. The pledge to the flag was given.
A motion was made by Commissioner Olson, seconded by Commissioner Gillie and unanimously carried to approve the agenda with the additions of -Approval of Sale Liquor Licenses for Lancaster Riverside Golf Club, Two River Golf Club Inc., and Wagon Wheel Ridge, Inc.
A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and unanimously carried to approve the Board minutes from the February 28, 2023 Board Meeting.
Sheriff Matt Vig presented for approval the estimate for new squad vehicle installation of safety equipment from Code 4 of Grand Rapids in the amount of $17,040.49. A motion made by Commissioner Gillie and seconded by Commissioner Swenson to approve $17.040.49 for the equipment installation was passed unanimously. Vig shared that C & M Ford did purchase the used squad for $8,500.00.
Wayne Jacobson, Veteran Services Officer announced that the DAV van had arrived and will be in service by the end of the week after some minor maintenance on the vehicle is completed. Shawn Anderson will be organizing the trips for the veterans and an article will be in the Kittson County Enterprise covering the new ride service. Jacobson also shared that there is an open house scheduled for the Bemidji Veteran’s Home for Friday March 10th, from 1-3 p.m.
Kathy Johnson, Social Services Director presented a candidate for the account tech opening in her department asking to offer the position to Daniella Steyn starting at Grade B-22-1 Working class 1 for a hourly wage of $21.41. A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and unanimously approved to approve the hire. Johnson presented an agreement with Northwest Community Action for a vehicle repair program to be offered in Kittson County of $15,000.00, which has an administrative cost of $1,500.00 paid to Northwest Community Action. A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Olson and unanimously approved to have Administrator Buhmann sign the agreement. Johnson also provided an update on the shared position for a family-based worker with Pennington County. The employee has accepted a new position and Pennington County was asking if Kittson County still was interested in sharing the position. Johnson informed the Board of the decision not to share this position and to utilize local resource organizations to meet the family needs as they arise.
Administrator Buhmann presented Resolution 23-5 Acquisition & Public Use of Tax Forfeited Parcel # 09.0211340. One of three parcels discussed as a possible highway shop building site. A motion was made by Commissioner Swenson, seconded by Commissioner Olson and unanimously approved to the acquisition of the parcel for public use.
Administrator Buhmann presented Resolution 23-6 Acquisition & Public Use of Tax Forfeited Parcel # 09.0212520. One of three parcels discussed as a possible highway shop building site. A motion was made by Commissioner Swenson, seconded by Commissioner Gillie and unanimously approved to the acquisition of the parcel for public use.
Administrator Buhmann presented Resolution 23-7 Acquisition & Public Use of Tax Forfeited Parcel # 09.0212540. One of three parcels discussed as a possible highway shop building site. A motion was made by Commissioner Swenson, seconded by Commissioner Olson and unanimously approved to the acquisition of the parcel for public use. Discussion covered if the sites are not chosen as a building site that the parcels will be placed back onto the public sale list. Also mentioned was could repair work be started on the storage shed and the consensus was not until the Board takes action to keep the parcel and has filed the deed paperwork with the County Recorder.
Administrator Buhmann presented two contracts with he city of Lancaster for fire protection for the townships of McKinley and Peatland. Contracts were in the amount of $1,838.07 for McKinley Township and $1,231.31 for Peatland Township. A motion was made by Commissioner Olson and seconded by Commissioner Swenson and unanimously passed to approve both contracts.
Administrator Buhmann requested that the Board void the lease agreement approved at the February 28, 2023 meeting which was passed to correct the original lease agreement approved at the February 7, 2023 meeting for rental space with the U.S Department of Agriculture as the square footage of the lease space was incorrect. However, after the February 28th Board meeting had finished, confirmation that the originally submitted lease agreement did have the correct square footage listed was determined. All documents were composed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie and seconded by Commissioner Swenson and passed unanimously to void out the lease agreement submitted at the February Board meeting and to reinstate the approval of the original lease agreement from the February 7, 2023 meeting. The lease amount is $76,552.80, monthly rate of $6,379.40 which is $16.70/square foot for 4,584 rentable square feet of office space.
Administrator Buhmann presented for approval renewal liquor licenses for:
• Lancaster Riverside Golf Club
• Two River Golf Club, Inc.
• Wagon Wheel Ridge, Inc.
A motion was made by Commissioner Olson and seconded by Commissioner Gillie to approve the three liquor license renewals. Motion passed unanimously.
Administrator Buhmann presented:
• Reminder Ditch Authority meeting for March 13, 2023 at 11 a.m. for the County Ditch #8 redetermination
• North Red River Township meeting for March 21, 2023 at 11 a.m. (DNR staff will be in attendance)
• Asked the Board to set a Commissioner workshop for March 14, 2023 at 10 a.m.
A motion was made by Commissioner Gillie, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and unanimously carried to approve the Bills and Expense sheets.
Commissioner’s $59,488.42 Auditor’s 03/02/2023 $597,988.36
03/03/2023 $13,996.55
Meal Reimbursement $48.86
A motion was made by Commissioner Olson, seconded by Commissioner Swenson and unanimously carried to approve the Per Diems and Expense sheets.
Nathan Kraulik $60.00
Theresia Gillie $510.00
Loren Younggren $480.00
Commissioner Gillie reported on attending Association of Minnesota Counties (AMC) Legislative update via zoom meeting. HF 1377 increasing the County Program Aid (CPA)was discussed with proposed increase of 57% in CPA Kittson County could see an additional $296,000.00 which is direct property tax relief. Senior Nutrition also has a bill proposing $10 million dollars to backfill the program until the federal government makes their funding adjustments. AMC is promoting Public Surplus as a vendor for counties to sell used equipment or buy used equipment to/from other public entities. Commissioner Olson reported attending the Minnesota Rural Counties video meeting where member counties discussed Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) and the Department of Natural Resources acquiring more land and removing it from the taxpayer rolls. Ditch portal was covered and not supported by the counties as the local Ditch authority area addressing the local needs of drainage. Also covered was the subject of county board proclamations and supporting individual amendments from our U.S. Constitution. Comments from the Commissioners was to avoid taking this approach as they all take an oath of office to support the U.S. Constitution.
No report from Commissioner Swenson. Commissioner Kraulik reported attending the Karlstad city council meeting as an engineering report was presented on the plans for the new local airport were reported. Costs over runs were also reported and that an additional $8 million dollars will be needed to complete the project.
Vice Chairman Kraulik adjourned the meeting at 10:08 a.m.
Nathan Kraulik,
Kittson County Board Vice Chair
ATTEST: Brian E. Buhmann,
Kittson County Administrator
(April 5, 2023)
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