Proceedings for the Brown County Commissioners

SYNOPSIS OF COUNTY BOARD MEETING

December 2, 2014

Members present: Berg, Windschitl, Lochner, and Potter (at 5:12 PM), along with County Administrator Enter, County Attorney Hinnenthal, and District 4 Commissioner-Elect Simonsen.  Seeboth was excused.

M/Lochner, S/Berg, to accept the Minutes of 11-25-2014 and authorize publication of the Synopsis of same; carried.

At 4:31 PM, State Senator Gary Dahms met with the County Board and eight (8) department heads to discuss pending legislative issues including: Concerns with the requirements for County Assessor accreditation; Appointment of County Officers; County Program Aid; Restoring the Public Health Block Grant; Probation Funding Reform; Transportation funding; Transit service limitations in the rural areas; Minnesota Rural Counties Caucus (MRCC); MN Estate Tax Exclusion; and Family Services issues.  After considerable discussion, Vice-Chair Windschitl thanked Senator Gary Dahms for attending the County Board meeting to review county legislative concerns.  

M/Berg, S/Windschitl, to authorize payment of General Government claims as revised in the amount of $123,897.56 as follows: Revenue $24,041.11; Public Health $3,015.96; Road and Bridge $62,740.06; Family Services $390.76; Park $11,376.20; Ditch $9,166.00; Capital Improvement Fund $3,450.00; Landfill $9,717.47; carried.

M/Windschitl, S/Lochner, to accept the quotation under state contract from Business Interiors by Staples in the amount of $4,617.49 for the purchase of office furniture for the Auditor/Treasurer’s office; carried 4-0.

M/Lochner, S/Potter, to approve twelve (12) drainage ditch repair requests; carried.

M/Lochner, S/Windschitl, to approve the final payment to Ed Rettman Jr. Excavating for the clean out & tile outlet repair of the CD 60, CD 5 & JD 30 R&B Open Ditches as follows: CD60 $63,353.80; CD 5 $3,899.80; JD 30 R&B $12,300.80; carried.

M/Windschitl, S/Berg, to table consideration of a resolution to approve support for and agreeing to act as sponsor for the City of Sleepy Eye in a Street Construction Project submittal for Local Road Improvement Program Funds; carried.

M/Lochner, S/Potter, to approve payment to M R Paving & Excavating in the amount of $11,411.80 for the clean out of flood debris along CSAH 8; carried.

M/Berg, S/Lochner, to approve payment to Erosion Control Plus in the amount of $4,200 for the erosion control of flood debris clean out areas along CSAH 8; carried.

M/Windschitl, S/Lochner, to approve payment to Landwehr Construction in the amount of $56,847 for the clean out of flood debris along CSAH 10; carried.

M/Lochner, S/Windschitl, to approve payment to Erosion Control Plus in the amount of $27,200 for the erosion control of flood debris clean out areas along CSAH 10; carried.

M/Berg, S/Windschitl, to approve payment to M R Paving & Excavating in the amount of $14,019.75 for the aggregate surfacing of flood debris clean out areas along CSAH 10; carried.

M/Berg, S/Potter, to accept the low bid for the Camels Back Bridge debris removal project from Landwehr Construction in the amount of $14,560; passed.  Another bid was received from Mathiowetz Construction.

M/Lochner, S/Berg, to accept the low bid for the Franklin Bridge debris removal project from Landwehr Construction in the amount of $24,900; passed.  Another bid was received from Mathiowetz Construction.

M/Windschitl, S/Lochner, to accept and file the Highway Dept. Monthly Update for Construction Projects and Maintenance Projects; passed.

At 5:45 PM, Chairman Potter recessed the Regular meeting noting that the County Board will reconvene at 6:00 PM in the District Courtroom 3rd floor.

At 6:00 PM, Chairman Potter reconvened the Regular Meeting to conduct the 2015 Proposed Budget and Levy Public Meeting in the 3rd floor District Courtroom of the Brown County Courthouse located in New Ulm, MN.  Commissioners Berg, Windschitl, Lochner, and Potter were in attendance, along with County Administrator Enter, County Attorney Hinnenthal, and Administrative/HR Assistant Schaefer.  Also in attendance were fourteen (14) Brown County department heads and staff; District 4 Commissioner-Elect Simonsen; County Attorney-Elect Hanson; and Media representative Fritz Busch of the Journal.  Informational handouts were distributed to those in attendance.  

At 6:01 PM, Administrator Enter presented Brown County’s proposed budget and levy for 2015, reviewing the handouts as provided.  The proposed 2015 Brown County levy noted was $11,971,313 which reflected a 5.15% increase from the 2014 levy in the amount of $11,384,513.  The Brown County Summary Budget Statement noted adopted 2014 and proposed 2015 revenues by fund and department, with the 2015 Brown County Budget Revenues projected at $29,468,581.  The adopted 2014 and proposed 2015 expenditures by fund and department were also presented in chart and graph form, with the proposed 2015 expenditures budgeted at $29,468,581 which represented a 3.38% decrease from 2014.  The proposed 2015 Expenditures by category as a percentage of total budget were noted as follows: 15.3% General Government; 5.7% Public Health Nursing; 30.87% Human Services; 28.37% Road and Bridge; 0.77% Conservation/Natural Resources; 1.48% Culture/Recreation; and 17.52% Public Safety.                                      

Administrator Enter addressed additional budget information as follows: Projected Brown County Employer Costs for employee compensation/benefits for 2015 totaling $15,326,194 or 52.1% of the total proposed budget; Comparison of estimated market values for total agriculture properties and total non-agriculture properties.  Administrator Enter also noted that preparation of the budget is a lengthy process and departments continually look for ways to limit the need for property taxes by seeking grants and reviewing departmental activity. 

At 6:06 PM, Chairman Potter called for testimony from the public regarding the proposed 2015 Brown County budget and levy.  There was no testimony from the general public.  Chairman Potter expressed thanks to those in attendance, and also thanked the department heads and staff for their efforts in preparing the draft 2015 budget and for controlling expenditures in 2014.  It was noted that the County Board will consider adoption of the final payable 2015 property tax levy and budget at the regular County Board Meeting at 11:00 AM on Tuesday 12-23-2014 in Room 204 of the Brown County Courthouse.                                         

At 6:07 PM, Chairman Potter concluded the 2015 County Budget/Levy Public Meeting.

At 6:15 PM, Chairman Dennis Potter reconvened the Regular Meeting in the Commissioners Room 204.  M/Berg, S/Potter, to approve purchase of the following items for the County Attorney’s office: Laptop computer dock under state contract in the amount of $149.59; MCAPS (Minnesota County Attorney Practice System) software license, installation, and training in the total amount of $6,379.00; Dictation software/hardware from BHphotovideo in the amount of $2,199.95; and an EX5220 projector from Epson.com in the amount of $499.99; passed 4-0.  An additional quote for the Dictation software/hardware was considered from OfficeDirect.com.  An additional quote for an EX5220 projector was considered from Amazon.com.

M/Windschitl, S/Lochner, to approve purchase of office furniture from River Bend Business Products in the total amount of $4,304 as related to the transition of the County Attorney Office to County Attorney-Elect Hanson; passed 4-0.  An additional quote was received from Kemske.

M/Windschitl, M/Berg, to approve MN Historical Society Letter of Agreement Governing Use of Historic Site with respect to MHS Grant #1404-04121; to approve MHS MN Historical and Cultural Heritage Grant Agreement #1404-04121 in the grant amount of $148,101 and match amount of $37,180 for the HVAC System Update: Phase I project for the Brown County Museum at 2 North Broadway, New Ulm, MN; to authorize the county administrator as authorized officer to execute the MHS Grant Agreement #1404-04121 and related documents for the implementation of said project; and to authorize the County Auditor/Treasurer’s Office to act as fiscal agent for MHS Minnesota Historical and Cultural Heritage Grant Agreement #1404-04121; passed.

M/Lochner, S/Potter, to authorize Brown County to act as the sponsoring agency on behalf of the Brown County Historical Society to apply for a MN Historical and Cultural Heritage (Legacy) program grant to fund an engineering study of water infiltration problems in the Brown County Museum at 2 North Broadway, New Ulm, MN; passed.

M/Berg, S/Windschitl, to accept the resignation of Johanna Larson effective 12/8/2014 and authorize posting according to contract/policy for a PT License Bureau Technician (20 hours/week); passed.

M/Lochner, S/Berg, to approve the PAC assigned points for the Assistant County Engineer position at 358 points, Grade XVIII, and implement in same manner as rotational review classification; passed.

M/Lochner, S/Potter, to approve the appointment of Michele Vogel as FT IT Systems Technician effective 12/8/2014 at the annual salary of $37,956 (Grade XI, step 2); passed.

M/Berg, S/Lochner, to approve the continuance of the PERA Phased Retirement Agreement request of Public Health PT Account Technician Marylu Anderson for another year beginning 2/1/2015 according to the PERA guidelines; passed.

M/Lochner, S/Windschitl, to accept the resignations of Assistant Brown County Attorneys Mike Boyle, Jeremy Berg, and Jared Peterson, and Brown County Attorney Office Legal Secretaries Linda Savoy and Gwen Mielke effective 1/5/2015; passed.

M/Windschitl, S/Lochner, to approve attendance of Commissioner-Elect Dean Simonsen and Auditor/Treasurer-Elect Jean Prochniak at the Association of MN Counties’ Conference for All Newly-Elected County Officials on January 28-29, 2015 in St. Paul, MN; passed.

M/Windschitl, S/Lochner, to approve the 2015 Departmental Conference Schedules and Association/Membership Dues; passed.

By consensus, the County Board accepted and order filed the update on 2015 Brown County Committee memberships.

Correspondence C-1 thru C-6 were accepted and filed. 

Calendars were coordinated for the next two week period.

There being no further business, Chairman Potter declared the Meeting adjourned at 7:00 PM.

 

The Official Minutes of the Regular Meeting of 12-2-2014 are on file in the County Administrator’s Office and may be viewed during normal business hours, M-F, 8AM-5PM.  Correspondence and requests for additional information may be directed to the County Administrator’s E-Mail Address:  cntyadmn@co.brown.mn.us  Home Page Address:  www.co.brown.mn.us

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