October 20, 2021
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 28TH, 2021, 5:00 P.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, September 28th, 2021, at 5:00 p.m.  Members Present: Darryl Tveitbakk, Seth Nelson, Bruce Lawrence, Dave Sorenson, and Neil Peterson.  Members absent: None.
The meeting was called to order by Chairman Peterson and the Pledge of Allegiance was recited.
Chairman Peterson asked if there were any amendments to the agenda.  Motioned by Commissioner Tveitbakk, seconded by Commissioner Sorenson, to approve the Board agenda as presented.  Motion carried.
Motioned by Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Commissioner Nelson, to approve the County Board minutes of September 14th, 2021, as written.  Motion carried.
Motioned by Commissioner Sorenson, seconded by Commissioner Lawrence, to approve the Auditor/Manual warrants for July and August 2021 totaling $2,133,314.08 and $4,418,760.77 respectively, the Human Services warrants totaling $294,856.14, and the following Commissioner warrants.  Motion carried.
County Revenue $85,130.74
Solid Waste Facility $  3,249.28
Per diems and meal reimbursements in the amount of $6.52 were also approved.
Human Services Director Julie Sjostrand presented the consent agenda from the September 21st, 2021, Human Services Committee meeting.  On a motion by Commissioner Lawrence and seconded by Commissioner Nelson, the following recommendations of the Pennington County Human Service Committee for September 21st, 2021 (detailed minutes on record) are hereby adopted:
I.To approve the August 17th, 2021, Human Services Committee Meeting minutes.
II.To approve the Agency’s personnel action as presented.
III.A.  To approve the “Every Student Succeeds Act” (ESSA) Service Agreement between Goodridge Public Schools and Pennington County Human Services as presented.
B.  Beth Donahue, Supervisor of Family Child Care Licensing – DHS, sent a letter to determine that Pennington County Human Services Family Child care meets compliance with the provisions of Minnesota Rules, which govern licensing functions delegated to county and private agencies.
I.To approve payment of the Agency’s bills.
Motioned by Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Commissioner Sorenson, to accept a letter of resignation by Full-Time Social Worker Lana Hoeper effective September 21st, 2021.  Motion carried.
Motioned by Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Commissioner Tveitbakk, to authorize the Human Services Director to advertise for the vacant Full-Time Social Worker position.  Motion carried.
On behalf of the County Board, Chairman Peterson thanked Ms. Sjostrand for setting up the September 21st, 2021, Human Service Committee meeting at the NW Juvenile Training Center in Bemidji.
Cindy Pic, Transportation Programs Director for Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, met with the Board via Zoom.  Ms. Pic thanked the Board for their support in past years and they are requesting $2,500 in funding for 2022, which will be used to help fund the purchase of 6 new buses.  Due to production delays with COVID-19, they are expecting the buses to come in the spring or summer of 2022.  She noted that 80% of new bus funding comes from the state and the remaining 20% coming from local levels.  Ms. Pic discussed the transportation services they provide in TRF, the county, and area towns and cities.  She noted that rides are also given for medical appointments in other cities as well as for local children activities, amounting to a total of 7,000-8,000 rides per month.  The Board thanked her for the report and took her funding request under advisement.
County Sheriff Ray Kuznia presented the following LEC items:
Motioned by Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Commissioner Tveitbakk, to approve the transfer of Wyatt Olson from Full-Time Dispatcher/Corrections Officer to Part-Time Deputy Sheriff effective September 29th, 2021.  Mr. Kuznia noted that Wyatt Olson will continue to help in Dispatch/Corrections as needed and until the vacancy is filled.  Motion carried.
Motioned by Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Commissioner Nelson, to approve the resignations of Full-Time Corrections Officer Sean Farris effective October 5th, 2021, and Full-Time Corrections Sergeant Alaina Juve effective October 7th, 2021.  Motion carried.
Discussion was held on the Red Lake Treaty Protest Camp south of TRF.  Sheriff Kuznia noted that the property is owned by the State of MN and thus the state / MnDOT will be responsible for cleanup of the area once the camp is vacant.
County Engineer Mike Flaagan met with the Board and presented a petition to clean approximately .5 miles of J.D.#13 in Reiner Township.  A Joint Ditch meeting is required and a meeting with Marshall County was tentatively scheduled for October 26th, 2021, at 8:00 a.m. in the Justice Center Board room.  Commissioners Lawrence, Tveitbakk, and Peterson will attend on behalf of Pennington County.
Mr. Flaagan presented a quote from Frontier Precision for a Total Station in the amount of $32,128.04.  This is a robotic station for precise measurements of bridges, curb and gutter, gravel piles, etc.  He noted that this purchase was budgeted for 2022 but funding is available in the 2021 Furniture and Equipment fund.  Motioned by Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Commissioner Nelson, to approve purchase of a Total Station from Frontier Precision at the quoted price of $32,128.04.  Following discussion on the system and its uses, the motion was carried.
Engineer Flaagan noted that the CD#96 stabilization project is complete and final payment is due.  Motioned by Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Commissioner Sorenson, to approve final payment on the CD#96 stabilization project to Davidson Construction in the amount of $17,919.60.  Motion carried.
Chairman Peterson requested that the County Coordinator present his items to the Board at this time.
County Coordinator Items:
Motioned by Commissioner Tveitbakk, seconded by Commissioner Lawrence, to approve the resignation of Part-Time Legal Secretary Ashlee Miramontes effective September 13th, 2021.  Motion carried.
Motioned by Commissioner Tveitbakk, seconded by Commissioner Sorenson, to approve the hire of Sam Omdahl as DMV Deputy Registrar effective October 4th, 2021.  Motion carried.
Committee Report / Commissioner Updates:  None.
County Auditor-Treasurer Items:
Auditor-Treasurer Jennifer Herzberg presented the 2022 budgets.  Motioned by Commissioner Lawrence, seconded by Commissioner Sorenson, to approve the following resolution, the 2022 proposed levy of 2.8% and County budget as written.  Motion carried.
WHEREAS, the Pennington County Board of Commissioners have reviewed the 2022 budgets submitted by the various departments; and
WHEREAS, the proposed levies have been reduced by the amount to be received from the State of Minnesota for the following: County Program Aid – $944,030 (estimated).
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the proposed budgets for 2022 are approved and that the following proposed levies be adopted:
Levy Before CPA / CPA* / Net Levy After CPA
$7,024,932/ $604,840/ $6,420,092
Road and Bridge
$1,407,770/ $121,213/ $1,286,557
$2,531,366/ $217,977/ $2,313,389
G.O. Jail Bond
$759,787/ $0/ $759,787
G.O. Justice Center CIP Bond
$379,995/ $0/ $379,995
County Attorney Items:
County Attorney Seamus Duffy noted that there is no change to the masking requirements in the Pennington County Courtrooms; masks or face coverings are still required at this time.
Mr. Duffy stated he will schedule a meeting with the Personnel Committee soon to discuss the Part-Time Legal Secretary vacancy in his office.
Inter-County Nursing Service Director Kayla Jore met with the Board via Zoom and presented a COVID-19 update.  The number of vaccinated county residents is increasing daily, and the 12+ age group is now at 56% vaccinated and age 16+ is just over 60% vaccinated.  ICNS is still holding vaccination clinics every Friday in the Government Center, and while COVID-19 cases fluctuate daily they are seeing more cases of R.S.V. and strep throat cases in local youth.  The Delta variant has caused hospitalization cases to rise but treatment options are shortening the stays and cases are less severe.  Commissioner Tveitbakk questioned when booster shots will be available, to which Ms. Jore replied that Pfizer is currently the only approved booster, and they will be available beginning on Friday and to contact Sanford Clinic for an appointment.  She said it will be another month or two, or possibly into 2022, before children under 12 will be approved for COVID-19 vaccinations.  The Board thanked Ms. Jore for her report.
Chairman Peterson thanked Auditor-Treasurer Jennifer Herzberg and all the county departments for their hard work on the 2022 budget and keeping the levy increase under 3%.
Motioned by Commissioner Tveitbakk, seconded by Commissioner Sorenson, to adjourn the Board meeting to October 12th, 2021, at 10:00 a.m.  Motion carried.
Kevin Erickson,
County Coordinator
Neil Peterson, Chairman
Pennington County
Board of Commissioners
Warrants approved on
Warrants approved on
September 28, 2021 for payment
on October 1, 2021
Vendor Amount
Applied Concepts, INC $3,154.00
Department of Corrections Financial Services $2,354.39
Guardian RFID $19,993.90
Hoffman, Philipp, & Knutson, PLLC
Les’s Sanitation Service $3,249.28
Mend Correctional Care, PLLC
Pennington County Crime Victim
Readitech IT Soluitions $5,890.10
Summit Food Service Management, LLC $14,432.94
Vortex Optics $5,694.17
41 Payments less than $2000
Final Total: $88,380.02