Lake of the Woods County (Minn.) Commissioners Proceedings /April 28, 2020

COMMISSIONER PROCEEDINGS
APRIL 28, 2020
PURSUANT TO MN. STATUTE 331A.01, SUBD. 10 THE PUBLISHED MATERIAL IS ONLY A SUMMARY AND THE FULL TEXT IS AVAILABLE FOR PUBLIC INSPECTION AT THE LAKE OF THE WOODS COUNTY AUDITOR/TREASURERS’ OFFICE OR BY STANDARD MAIL OR ELECTRONIC MAIL OR LAKE OF THE WOODS COUNTY WEBSITE -www.lake-of-the-woods.mn.us
The Lake of the Woods County Board of Commissioners met in regular session on Tuesday, April 28 2020 at Lake of the Woods County Government Center in the Commissioners’ Room.
CALL TO ORDER-Chair Jon Waibel called the meeting to order at 9:00 a.m. and the Pledge of Allegiance was recited with the following members present: Commissioners: Joe Grund, Jon Waibel, Buck Nordlof, Cody Hasbargen and Ed Arnesen. Also present were: County Auditor/Treasurer Lorene Hanson, Emergency Management Director Jill Hasbargen-Olson, County Attorney James Austad and Mike Hovde.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA-Motion was made by Commissioner Cody Hasbargen, seconded by Commissioner Buck Nordlof and carried unanimously to approve the agenda.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES-Motion was made by Commissioner Joe Grund, seconded by Commissioner Cody Hasbargen and carried unanimously to approve the official and summarized minutes of April 14, 2020 and April 21, 2020.
SOCIAL SERVICES-Claims-Motion was made by Commissioner Joe Grund, seconded by Commissioner Ed Arnesen and carried unanimously to approve the following claims: Commissioners Warrant’s $6,982.47, Commissioners Warrant’s $3,104.61, Commissioners Warrant’s $21,865.91.
AUDITOR/TREASURER-Claims-Motion was made by Commissioner Buck Nordlof, seconded by Commissioner Cody Hasbargen and carried unanimously to approve the claims against the County as follows: Revenue $66,450.46; Road & Bridge $53,670.47; Solid Waste $17,142.03;
WARRANTS FOR PUBLICATION
Warrants Approved On 4/28/2020 For Payment 4/30/2020
Vendor Name                 Amount
Allstates Pavement Recycling & Stab. Inc                      10,366.00
Avenu Insights & Analytics             6,311.59
ByteSpeed, LLC                 3,844.00
Mar-Kit Landfill                             14,595.50
Mike Motors of Minnesota Inc                         28,840.00
Minnesota Ui                 3,633.90
Northern Light Region             3,586.43
Office Liquidators Inc.             9,881.00
Quadient Finance USA Inc.             3,000.00
Ranger GM                             37,045.00
31 Payments less than 2000                         16,159.54
Final Total:                           137,262.96
Further moved to authorize the payment of the following auditor warrants: April 15, 2020 for 43,754.64; April 22, 2020 for 10,625.47.
Property Tax-Resolution-The following resolution was offered by Commissioner Ed Arnesen, seconded by Commissioner Cody Hasbargen and carried unanimously the following:
RESOLUTION PROPERTY TAX LATE PAYMENT ABATEMENT COVID-19
RESOLUTION NO. 20-04-02
WHEREAS; the Lake of the Woods County Board of Commissioners declared Lake of the Woods County in a State of Emergency for the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency effective March 16, 2020, pursuant to Minnesota Statutes 2019 Chapter 12; and WHEREAS; the COVID-19 Pandemic Virus is impacting Lake of the Woods County residents and its’ businesses; and WHEREAS; Lake of the Woods County desires to provide temporary relief to its residents and businesses within the County that have been directly or indirectly impacted by the economic pressures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic; and WHEREAS; Lake of the Woods County recognizes that due to unemployment, lost or reduced wages and the loss of business income, the timely payment of property taxes will be a major economic pressure for many county property owners and businesses this year; and WHEREAS; Lake of the Woods County recognizes that not all individual and business property owners may be experiencing financial hardships due to COVID-19, and those who can, are encouraged to pay their property taxes by the due date of May 15, 2020 or as scheduled.  This would also include all who utilize escrow payments and Automatic ACH payments (Direct Payment of Property Tax); and WHEREAS; the Lake of the Woods County Board may, pursuant to Minnesota Statute 279.01, subdivision 2, with the concurrence of the County Treasurer, abate the penalty for late payment of property taxes in the current year; and WHEREAS; the Lake of the Woods County Board finds that imposing the penalty for late payment of the 2020 current year property taxes that would be imposed between May 16, 2020 and July 15, 2020 would be unjust and unreasonable; and WHEREAS; the Lake of the Woods County Auditor/Treasurer concurs with the County Board’s findings and its desire to abate the penalty for taxpayers for late payment of the 2020 current year property taxes that would be imposed between May 16, 2020 and July 15, 2020. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Lake of the Woods County Board of Commissioners pursuant to Minnesota Statute 279.01, subdivision 2, hereby delegates authority to the County Auditor/Treasurer to abate any penalties for late payments made for the first half of current year 2020 property tax payments due in May 2020, and paid on or before July 15, 2020; FURTHER, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Lake of the Woods County Board of Commissioners encourages all taxpayers that can pay their property taxes by May 15, 2020 to comply with the due date. FURTHER, BE IT RESOLVED, by the Lake of the Woods County Board of Commissioners, that this abatement consideration applies only to current year property tax payments originally due in May 2020, but received on or before July 15, 2020, and any taxes paid after July 15, 2020, will revert to the regular penalty schedule.
Snowmobile Trails Assistance Program Resolutions
The following resolution was offered by Commissioner Ed Arnesen, seconded by Commissioner Joe Grund and moved for adoption:
Resolution No. 20-04-04 Sponsorship of Snowmobile Trails Assistance Program
BE IT RESOLVED, that Lake of the Woods County will act as the legal sponsor for an application for funding to the State of Minnesota Department of Natural Resource for NW Angle Islands maintenance of snowmobile trails managed by Northwest Angle Edge Riders Club. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that upon approval of its application by the state, the Lake of the Woods County may enter into an agreement with the State of Minnesota for the above referenced project and that it will comply with all applicable laws and regulations as stated in the agreement. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that County Auditor-Treasurer, Lorene G Hanson is hereby authorized to serve as the fiscal agent for the above referenced project.
The following resolution was offered by Commissioner Buck Nordlof, seconded by Commissioner Cody Hasbargen and moved for adoption:
Resolution No. 20-04-05 Sponsorship of Snowmobile Trails Assistance Program
BE IT RESOLVED, that Lake of the Woods County will act as the legal sponsor for an application for funding to the State of Minnesota Department of Natural Resource for Lake of the Woods Drifters Land and Big Traverse Trails managed by Lake of the Woods Drifters. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that upon approval of its application by the state, the Lake of the Woods County may enter into an agreement with the State of Minnesota for the above referenced project and that it will comply with all applicable laws and regulations as stated in the agreement. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that County Auditor-Treasurer, Lorene G Hanson is hereby authorized to serve as the fiscal agent for the above referenced project.
FUTURE COUNTY SPENDING-It was the consensus of the Board that departments visit with the Board before making capital expenditures, even if the item was budgeted for. The Board requested to review Revenue and Expenditure guidelines again.

MIS-Website Update-MIS Director, Peder Hovland, contacted other counties to discuss their websites and vendor recommendations.  An updated ADA compliant website could cost $30,000 to $60,000 to build with an additional annual cost of $6,000 to $7,000.  A committee with representation from each department will be formed.  Commissioners would like MIS to get quotes for the updating of the website.
LAND AND WATER PLANNING-MCIT Sponsoring Entity Resolution-The following resolution was offered by Commissioner Cody Hasbargen, seconded by Commissioner Ed Arnesen and moved for adoption:
RESOLUTION #20-04-03
Sponsorship of Lake of the Woods Watershed Joint Powers Board for Minnesota Counties Intergovernmental Trust Membership
WHEREAS, Lake of the Woods County is a member of the Minnesota Counties Intergovernmental Trust; and WHEREAS, a current member of the Minnesota Counties Intergovernmental Trust must sponsor a new entity for membership; and WHEREAS, Lake of the Woods Watershed Joint Powers Board desires to become a member for the purposes of obtaining liability, property, and workers compensation coverage. NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that Lake of the Woods County sponsors Lake of the Woods Watershed Joint Powers Board for membership.
Adopted this 28th day of April, 2020
COUNTY HIGHWAY/LANDFILL-Update County Highway-County Engineer, AJ Pirkl, provided the County Highway update. An invitation was extended to Lindsay Krause for the U of M student intern position. Krause will start just after Memorial Day.  Pirkl is looking into rental options for a Gradall Excavator.  The excavator can travel at highway speed (60 mph) and could increase ditch cleaning capabilities.  There are three dealers in Minnesota, the closest being in Virginia.  Pirkl will have more information for the next meeting.
Motion was made by Commissioner Joe Grund, seconded by Commissioner Buck Nordlof and carried unanimously to accept and approve the bid for SAP 39-030-003 Bituminous Seal Coat Project to Asphalt Surface Technologies Corporation (ASTECH) for $332,789.35.
Update Landfill-County Engineer, AJ Pirkl, provided the County Landfill Update. The landfill plans to start operating at full-staff after the road restrictions are lifted. Pirkl submitted the landfill expansion and updated ground water monitoring plan to the MCPA last Friday.
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT-Approval of New Radio Console-Jill Hasbargen-Olson, Emergency Management Director, requested approval for the MCC 7500 Dispatch Console.  The Emergency Communications Networks (ECN) has agreed to cover 44% of the cost, Hasbargen-Olson is also working with insurance to cover some of the cost due to damage from the lightning strike last summer. The quote was for $380,572 (-$167,451.68 from ECN = $213,120.32).  Hasbargen-Olson said that the fire department, ambulance and school buses will be switching to the armor system this summer.  County Highway still uses VHF radios. The County Board suggested to move forward but to work with the County Engineer, AJ Pirkl, to get the County Highway onboard at the same time. Hasbargen-Olson also talked about 911 equipment in dispatch that is nearing end of life, more information on this equipment will be provided at the next meeting.  The board requested an update on ongoing expenditures in the 911 budget.
Motion was made by Commissioner Joe Grund, seconded by Commissioner Ed Arnesen and carried unanimously to approve the purchase of the MCC 7500 Dispatch Console for Lake of the Woods County at a cost of up to $213,120.00 (after ECN pays 44%).
COVID-19 UPDATE- Jill Hasbargen-Olson, Emergency Management Director, had nothing new to report on the COVID-19 front and no confirmed cases in Lake of the Woods County. ANI Pharmaceuticals was set to present at the next stakeholders meeting on their COVID-19 cleaning procedures and employee protocols.  Ryan Zemek from Lake of the Woods Economic Development was also asked to provide information.  Hasbargen-Olson continues to work with public health and reported that the memorandum of understanding has not been received back from the hotels and the arena.  She recommended that the County Board review travel and trainings policies for county employees and consider if those will continue, web conferences for future meetings and trainings was encouraged.  It was suggested to have the department heads meet to plan for reopening the county buildings. Consider having a masking/screening processes in place for employees and a policy template that each department could complete to plan for social distancing and cleaning.  Department heads will be requested to attend the May 5th special COVID-19 meeting. Hasbargen-Olson will work with the Northern Light Region to include a Thank You to the community for the masks and support during COVID-19.
James Austad, County Attorney, mentioned that Court Administration is having a meeting to continue plans for reopening the courts.
RECESS-With no further business before the Board, Chairman Jon Waibel called the meeting to recess at 10:48 a.m.

Attest: May 12, 2020
County Auditor/Treasurer, Lorene Hanson
Chairman of the Board, Jon Waibel
COMMISSIONER PROCEEDINGS
May 5, 2020
THE PUBLISHED MATERIAL IS ONLY A SUMMARY AND THE FULL TEXT IS AVAILABLE FOR PUBLIC INSPECTION AT THE LAKE OF THE WOODS COUNTY AUDITOR/TREASURERS’ OFFICE OR BY STANDARD MAIL OR ELECTRONIC MAIL OR LAKE OF THE WOODS COUNTY WEBSITE -www.lake-of-the-woods.mn.us
The Lake of the Woods County Board of Commissioners met for a special meeting on Tuesday, May 5, 2020 at Lake of the Woods County Government Center in the Commissioners’ Room.
CALL TO ORDER-Chair Jon Waibel called the meeting to order at 9:00 a.m. and the Pledge of Allegiance was recited with the following members present: Commissioners: Jon Waibel, Buck Nordlof, Cody Hasbargen, Ed Arnesen and Joe Grund. Also present were: County Auditor/Treasurer Lorene Hanson, Emergency Management Director Jill Hasbargen-Olson.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA-Motion was made by Commissioner Buck Nordlof, seconded by Commissioner Ed Arnesen and carried unanimously to approve the agenda.
COVID-19 UPDATE-Emergency Management Update-Jill Hasbargen-Olson, Emergency Management Director, provided a COVID-19 update.  Hasbargen-Olson said that there was nothing new to report and that there were no confirmed cases in Lake of the Woods County.  She shared that during the stakeholders meeting last week, Ryan Zemek from Lake of the Woods Economic Development Authority talked about what businesses would need to reopen. Todd Farris, from ANI Pharmaceuticals, Inc., also spoke about policies and procedures in place there.  The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will attend the stakeholders meeting this Thursday at 4:00 p.m.  There will be a Tornado Drill on Wednesday, May 6th for the Government Center and Highway Department.
Discussion with Department Heads: Creating a plan for reopening the county buildings and services-Hasbargen-Olson recommended a committee approach for creating a plan and long-term strategy to reopen county buildings and services, to include the Building and Safety Committee and Human Resources.  Hasbargen-Olson has policy templates to provide to departments.  The committee can work on a main policy and then departments can adjust for their needs. The group should discuss signage, mask policy, and sanitizer stations. Hasbargen-Olson did pick up a supply of sanitizer from ANI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. A communication was sent to the Governor’s Office asking for clarification regarding reopening county and state offices. Kay M. Schell, CHI LakeWood Public Health Manager, talked about the symptoms that were added to the COVID-19 symptom list. Commissioner Ed Arnesen, asked about testing.  Schell said that the Minnesota Department of Health is working on a quick test option to be available within the next month.  Schell will get an update on the timeline and the number of tests that will be available to our area and will report her findings at the Thursday stakeholders meeting.  CHI LakeWood Health is also working on getting a testing unit in-house, late summer, through CommonSpirit Health.  This unit would test for COVID-19 as well as other things.
The Highway Department will be planning to go full-staff on Monday, May 11th to get started on road and drainage projects.  They will be staggering shift start times.  The Public Works Office will be keeping the doors closed to the public for now, they can provide needed documents by email or meet customers at the door to provide forms if needed. The process to reopen license center services to the public included a discussion of starting in stages, possibly by appointment. The Department of Driver and Vehicle Services requires a plan to be submitted before reopening the doors to the public.  Commissioner Jon Waibel would like to test run having customers call for appointments. Several departments are currently using a drop box in the social services lobby and it is causing increased interaction between departments. A larger drop box will be installed outside to accommodate Social Services.  The smaller lock box that is currently available outside the government center, will continue to be used for dropping off items for other departments. Hasbargen-Olson recommends not to continue with drivers testing in the Commissioners’ Room when the Government Center opens to the public – Bemidji or Roseau can accommodate testers with a larger space. In general, the County should be working towards getting staff back to full capacity with COVID-19 guidelines, working from home can still be part of the plan. An update on the Courts from County Attorney, James Austad – with very few exceptions, there are no in-person hearings at this time.
Other Areas of Concern-County Attorney, James Austad, mentioned a lack of high-speed internet in the area. County Engineer, AJ Pirkl, asked if there was a plan in place if the county were to go from zero to 15 cases after this weekend.  Schell commented that a worry would be if there is a surge and Bemidji or Grand Forks are full.  She said that Bemidji is our first call, COVID-19 patients would be transported there.  There is also a COVID-19 hospital in Saint Paul.  The infrastructure of our local hospital was built for critical care, the facility would not have the oxygen supply for multiple patients needing oxygen for a long period of time.  As a facility, LakeWood is working on the lead time for oxygen delivery.  Commissioner Ed Arnesen asked about Sanford in Thief River Falls and their ventilator capacity. Hasbargen-Olson is working on a document to help prepare for the influx of people due to tourism. Mike Hovde, from the Northern Light Region, had a question for the Commissioners who represent the resorts.  From what Hovde has heard, resorts are not seeing the traffic or reservations that are typical of May and June.  Commissioner Ed Arnesen said that he is seeing the same in his own business, they are getting some cancelations and group sizes are shrinking. The Lake of the Woods Economic Development Authority will continue to meet by phone/web.
Individuals that are part of the Buildings and Safety Committee and Human Resources will stay to have a work session after this meeting to start on the plan for reopening County buildings and services.
RECESS-With no further business before the Board, Chairman Jon Waibel called the meeting to recess at 9:58 a.m.

Attest: May 12, 2020
County Auditor/Treasurer, Lorene Hanson
Chairman of the Board, Jon Waibel

Publish May 27, 2020

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