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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS
PENNINGTON COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
JUSTICE CENTER BOARD ROOM
JULY 12TH, 2022 – 10:00 A.M.
Pursuant to adjournment, the Pennington County Board of Commissioners met in the Pennington County Justice Center Board Room in Thief River Falls, MN, on Tuesday, July 12th, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. Members Present: Seth Nelson, Bruce Lawrence, Neil Peterson, Darryl Tveitbakk. Members present via Zoom: David Sorenson. Members absent: None.
The meeting was called to order by Chairman Lawrence and the Pledge of Allegiance was recited.
Chairman Lawrence asked if there were any amendments to the agenda. The County Coordinator noted that ICNS Director Kayla Jore can be removed from the agenda. Motioned by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Tveitbakk, to approve the Board agenda with the change presented. Motion carried.
County Coordinator Kevin Erickson made notice that Commissioner Sorenson is attending the meeting via Zoom and thus will not participate in voting.
Recognition of Citizens: None present.
Motioned by Commissioner Nelson, seconded by Commissioner Peterson, to approve the Board of minutes of June 28th, 2022. Commissioner Nelson noted that Commissioner Tveitbakk attended the meeting. The County Coordinator will make that change and also noted an adjustment needed to the motion approving a tax abatement for Trandem Enterprises to include 2023 value/tax. Hearing no further discussion, the motion was carried.
Motioned by Commissioner Nelson, seconded by Commissioner Tveitbakk, to approve the following Commissioner warrants. Motion carried.
County Revenue $124,675.19
Road & Bridge $ 68,243.52
Solid Waste Facility $ 88.00
Ditch Funds $ 150.00
State Funds $ 1,883.21
Per diems and meal reimbursements in the amount of $2,753.81 were also approved.
Chester Powell – Clearwater SWCD Water Plan Coordinator/Program Tech, and Peter Nelson – Pennington County SWCD District Manager, provided the Board with an update on the Clearwater River Watershed Management Plan. The watershed covers 1385 square miles and 4% is in Pennington County. Two public open houses have been held and an online survey was conducted to help form the plan. Discussion was held on plan funding and funding levels. Six counties entered into an M.O.A. to implement the plan. The Plan timeline includes a 60-day review period, a Public Hearing and Policy Meeting on August 27, 2022, September County Board approvals, and October meetings with the Board of Soil & Water Resources. Engineer Flaagan questioned if there will projects affecting Pennington County as we have many ditches draining into the Clearwater River. Mr. Powell asked that the County inform Peter Nelson of any projects that come to mind in the future. The Board thanked them for their report.
County Engineer Mike Flaagan stated that Schenkey’s Inc. has completed their gravel crushing contract and final payment is requested in the amount of $138,200. Mike stated that approximately 40,000 yards of gravel were crushed and most goes to the east 1/3 of the county where it’s most cost effective. The following resolution was introduced by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Nelson, and upon vote was unanimously carried.
RESOLUTION
WHEREAS, Contract No. 57-22-06 has in all things been completed, and the County Board being fully advised in these premises,
NOW THEN, BE IT RESOLVED, that we do hereby accept said completed project for and on behalf of the Pennington County Highway Department and authorize final payment as specified herein.
Engineer Flaagan presented the following four bids received for culvert installation at driveways and crossings along CSAH #7 in 2024:
Drydal Construction
(Bagley) $39,033.84
Jeff Olson
Construction $48,214.00
Olson (Steve)
Construction $77,864.99
R.J. Zavoral & Sons
Construction $75,664.00
Motioned by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Tveitbakk, to approve the bid of Dyrdal Construction in amount of $39,033.84 as the lowest and best bid received for the 2024 installation of culverts along CSAH #7. Motion carried.
Motioned by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Nelson, to approve the resignation of Erick Huseth effective July 22nd, 2022, and to send a letter of appreciation to Mr. Huseth for his service to the County. Motion carried.

Motioned by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Tveitbakk, to authorize the Engineer to advertise externally for the position of Signman/Equipment Operator should no internal applications be received. Motion carried.
Discussion was held on the vacant position of Highway Mechanic. The job description has been edited allowing for relevant experience to substitute for a degree/certificate. Engineer Flaagan stated that the Highway Equipment Operators can perform some equipment maintenance, but the rest will have to be hired out until a mechanic is hired.
Emergency Management Director Erik Beitel informed the Board that the Presidential Emergency Declaration for MN has been approved. The damage from April weather events have been approved for federal disaster relief. Two applicant briefings will be held by FEMA, and reimbursements will occur after submitted projects are complete. Mr. Beitel noted that the Hazard Mitigation Plan is being updated and may offer some assistance to homes threatened by riverbank erosion.
Engineer Flaagan noted that most culverts and crossings have been replaced or repaired along the County State Aid routes. Approximately 90 sites needed work and were prioritized in the order of access, driveways, and field crossings.
County Sheriff Ray Kuznia requested Board approval to send a 90-day term notice to our current food service vendor for the jail, Summit Food Service, and to conduct an RFP for a new food service vendor.
Motioned by Commissioner Tveitbakk, seconded by Commissioner Peterson, to authorize the County Sheriff to send a 90-day notice to Summit Food Service to term the contract agreement for food services at the Pennington County LEC. Motion carried.
Motioned by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Nelson, to authorize the County Sheriff to conduct an RFP for a new food service vendor for the Pennington County LEC. Discussion followed with the Board requesting committee review of the RFP prior to publishing. Following discussion, the motion was carried.
Motioned by Commissioner Tveitbakk, seconded by Commissioner Nelson, to approve 1) a 5-year Joint Powers Agreement with the State of MN/Dept of Public Safety/BCA for utilization of the criminal justice communications network, 2) an Amendment to the CJDN Subscriber Agreement regarding access to BCA systems, tools, and Court Records, 3) the following associated resolution. Motion carried.
RESOLUTION APPROVING STATE OF MN JOINT POWERS
AGREEMENTS WITH THE COUNTY OF PENNINGTON ON BEHALF OF ITS COUNTY ATTORNEY AND SHERIFF
WHEREAS, the County of Pennington on behalf of its County Attorney and Sheriff desires to enter into Joint Powers Agreements with the State of MN, Dept. of Public Safety, Bureau of Criminal Apprehension to use systems and tools available over the State’s criminal justice data communications network for which the County is eligible. The Joint Powers Agreements further provide the County with the ability to add, modify, and delete connectivity, systems, and tools over the five-year life of the agreement and obligates the County to pay the costs for the network connection.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the County Board of Pennington, Minnesota as follows:
1) That the State of MN Joint Powers Agreements by and between the State of MN acting through its Dept of Public Safety, Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and the County of Pennington on behalf of its County Attorney and Sheriff are hereby approved.
2) That the Sheriff, Ray D. Kuznia, or his or her successor, is designated the Authorized Representative for the Sheriff. The Authorized Representative is also authorized to sign any subsequent amendment or agreement that may be required by the State of MN to maintain the County’s connection to the systems and tools offered by the State.
3) That the County Attorney, Seamus Duffy, or his or her successor, is designated the Authorized Representative for the County Attorney. The Authorized Representative is also authorized to sign any subsequent amendment or agreement that may be required by the State of MN to maintain the County’s connection to the systems and tools offered by the State.
4) That Bruce Lawrence, the Chair of the County of Pennington, and Kevin Erickson, the County Board Clerk, are authorized to sign the State of MN Joint Powers Agreements.
Motioned by Commissioner Tveitbakk, seconded by Commissioner Peterson, to approve the resignation of Jail Sergeant Jonathon Erickson effective July 15th, 2022. Motion carried.
Sheriff Kuznia provided an update on jail staffing, noting they are currently short three Corrections Officers. Motioned by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Tveitbakk, to authorize the Sheriff to post internally for a Full-Time Corrections Officer. Motion carried.
County Assessor Carl Bruzek presented an Application for Abatement by Dawn Pyle, parcel M17.09102700. The mobile home was removed from the property in Sanders Township in April 2020 but was not removed from the 2022 assessment. Motioned by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Nelson, to approve the Application for Abatement for Dawn Pyle, parcel M17.09102700, for taxes payable 2021 and 2022 to reflect removal of the mobile home from the property. Motion carried.
Auditor-Treasurer Items:
Motioned by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Tveitbakk, to authorize overtime pay for the Auditor-Treasurer’s office and other designated staff pertaining to the 2022 Primary and General Elections. Discussion followed with the Auditor-Treasurer noting that current staff handle all election duties. Following discussion, the motion was carried.
County Coordinator Items:
Motioned by Commissioner Tveitbakk, seconded by Commissioner Nelson, to approve a quote by ACCT, Inc. in the amount of $20,500 for flooring asbestos abatement on the east side of the 1st floor of the Government Center. Motion carried.
County Coordinator Kevin Erickson noted a recent meeting with North Risk Partners regarding the county health insurance and provided the Board a summary update. The premiums-to-claims ratio has improved in 2021 and 2022 and there were/are fewer high case claims in both years as well. Health insurance renewal rates have been decreasing and based on 2021 and 2022 claim information and our current trends he anticipates a good renewal for 2023. The renewal rates for 2023 will be released in mid-August, 2022.
Coordinator Erickson noted receipt of partial quotes from Paint & Glass Interiors for flooring and paint for the Government Center/1st floor remodel project. The Building Committee will review all final quotes received and will make a recommendation to the Board at a future meeting.
County Attorney Items: None.
Committee Reports/Commissioner Updates:
Commissioner Tveitbakk noted a Building Committee meeting with SEH on July 7th. Final plans for the 1st floor remodel will be available soon. Sentence to Serve will help vacate the remodel areas and will provide painting services for 1st floor. SEH toured the 3rd floor extensively to evaluate electrical and HVAC systems and continues to work on the final plans for that floor.
Motioned by Commissioner Peterson, seconded by Commissioner Tveitbakk, to adjourn the Board meeting to July 26th, 2022, at 5:00 p.m. Motion carried.
ATTEST:
Kevin Erickson,
County Coordinator
Pennington County
Bruce Lawrence, Chairman
Board of Commissioners
PENNINGTON COUNTY’S
WARRANTS FOR PUBLICATION
Warrants approved on
June 28th, 2022 for payment
on July 1st, 2022
Vendor Amount
COLE PAPERS, INC. $4,698.31
DEPT OF CORRECTIONS
FINANCIAL SERV. $3,616.00
FARMERS UNION OIL $23,101.11
HOUSTON ENGINEERING
INC $9,145.04
MINNESOTA STATE
TREASURER $4,142.50
MN COUNTIES COMPUTER
COOPERATIVE $15,182.50
NORTHDALE OIL INC. $16,054.50
NORTHWEST REGIONAL
LIBRARY $29,848.75
QUALITY SPRAY FOAM
LLC $11,400.00
SHORT ELLIOT
HENDRICKSON, INC. $7,595.00
SUMMIT FOOD SERVICE
MANAGEMENT $15,531.93
SUNDBY
CLEANING, LLC $3,100.00
THE TIMES $2,061.09
UNIVERSITY OF MN – EXTENSION
SERVICE $19,237.25
UNIVERSITY OF
NORTH DAKOTA $2,380.00
64 Payments
less than $2000 $27,945.94
Final Total: $195,039.92