Commissioners Proceedings


September 15, 2014

   9:00 AM  CONVENE

PRESENT  Deb Ranum, Chairperson; William L. Randash and Steve Baldwin, members; and Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder

   9:00 AM – Fletcher Creek – The Commission signed the agreement between Fallon County and EHC, LLC for the replacement of the Fletcher Creek Bridge. The agreement is filed in the Commissioners’ office.


   The Commission reviewed and approved the September, 2014 Mid-Month claims in the amount of $472,176.87 and they are filed in the Clerk and Recorder’s office.

    10:00 AM  Greg Benjamin, Ryan Rittal and Kathy Thompson, Stahly Engineering, and Bobby Wiedmer, Road Foreman

   Bridges-The group met to review the sufficiency ratings of Fallon County’s MDT inspected bridges. Greg explained $150.00 per square foot is the estimated replacement cost of a bridge as a rule of thumb. They brought a sample report from their Company for the Commission to review as well.

   10:30 AM  Jon Brosz, Brosz Engineering, joined.

  Funding-The Commission explained the County has tried to get funding from TSEP with no success, therefore Fallon County has funded their own bridges. The primary reason for stopping was to see if the Commission had a need for upgrading the County’s bridges and how they could assist Fallon County. Stahly has several solutions to tailor the bridges to the County’s needs and they like to work with the counties and municipalities in our area.

   Everyone left the meeting with the exception of Jon and Bobby.

   11:00 AM Jon Brosz, Brosz Engineering; Bobby Wiedmer, Road Foreman; and Alba Higgins, Shop Foreman

   Fletcher Creek Bridge-They will start working on this box culvert today. Brosz was informed the precast box culverts cannot be delivered until October so the contractor has been sent designs to complete a cast-in-place.

   Feed Mill Bridge-They will have to do a cast-in-place for the Feed Mill Bridge as well.  Diamond J will start between the 29th- 6th of October on this bridge.

   Upper Lake-Diamond J will start working on the upper lake gate from the 8th – 21st of October and then will move back to the Feed Mill Bridge after that.

   Jon will inform Cretex they will be placing cast-in-place box culverts rather than precast and they may then move up the build time. Contractor may also need extra time for the cast-in-place if bad weather is received.

Bonnievale Cemetery Drainage – Jon stated Brosz surveyors will stake this project tomorrow. Jasen Wyrick, Wyrick Construction, is checking with a tree mover, but, will be working on the Fairgrounds storage shed first.

   North Baker Drainage-Jon plans to meet with one of the landowners at their property to explain why the property is being flagged.

     Lagoon-City of Baker-They are waiting on negotiations pertaining to the Beach water well.

  SWPPP Training (Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan)-Jon recommends Bobby and Alba and/or Mark Sieler take this training. Work performed on box culverts, gravel pits, etc. Will need someone certified to complete inspections on any work performed (over one acre).  Jon will email about the training.

  J & M Lumber Subdivision-The sub-divider contacted Commissioner Ranum regarding the progress on this property. Jon will contact the Planning Department to check on the progress and report to the sub-divider.

    Baker Lake-Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering, sent information to DNRC regarding mitigation for the Baker Lake issues. Jon felt the County had plans to purchase land; the Commission is looking at all options available.


Auction- County Auction items were discussed.

New Backhoe – The new backhoe is here; it did not come with a quick attach so they made a compromise.


  This meeting did not take place


   Noon recess.


  PRESENT  Deb Ranum, Chairperson; William L. Randash and Steve Baldwin, members; and Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder

  1:15 PM  Reviewed applications for the Museum Curator position.


  PRESENT  Craig Canfield, KLJ; Roger Meggers, Airport Manager; and Mary Grube, Planning Secretary; No public members

  Powder River Training Complex MOA – Craig briefed the Commission on the answers he received at convention.  Craig stated the FAA makes the final decisions on the airspace.

  PUBLIC HEARING-Baker Airport Affected Area Zoning Ordinance

    Purpose and Intent-The purpose of these regulations is to promote the public health, safety and general welfare of airport users and persons and property in the vicinity of the Baker Municipal Airport by addressing the effects of noise, height of structures and trees, and land use in the vicinity of Baker Municipal Airport, in accordance with Section 67-7-203, MCA. These regulations are intended to protect the transportation and commerce infrastructure provided to the community by the Airport from incompatible development and to protect the Airport from personal or property injury claims due to noise and hours of operations.  The Regulations are for the benefit of the City of Baker and Fallon County as governing bodies of the Baker Municipal Airport.

   Discussion-The group discussed height restrictions, land uses, (compatible and incompatible), around the Airport and updating the Land Use Plan, permitting process, and appeals.

   City of Baker-The City of Baker will be holding their Public Hearing this Wednesday evening. There will then be a two week Public Comment period. After that time, if there is no public comment, both the City of Baker and Fallon County would sign a resolution adopting the AAA Regulations which would go into effect October 1, 2014.

   2:30 PM  Mary Grube, Planning Secretary

  Planning Board-Mary provided each Commissioner a packet for the Planning Board meeting tonight at 7:00 PM in the Fallon County Courthouse Courtroom.

  Sixth Street Subdivision-Mary Grube discussed Dave DeGrandpre, Land Solutions, offered his assistance to review the large and complex 6th Street Subdivision.   

  Planning Department Report-Mary submitted the weekly Planning Department report.

  Staffing-Mary feels the Planning Department needs two people in addition to the Contract Planner. Mary asked if another person was hired what their title would be and also what would Mary’s title be.  The Commission will discuss this at a later time.

  3:20 PM  Bobby Wiedmer, Road Foreman, and Alba Higgins, Shop Foreman, met to discuss the crusher and conveyor.



  The Commission reviewed and/or approved the following:

   Landfill AR Report-September 15, 2014-Amount Due to the Landfill-$125,671.38

  Treasurer’s Cash Receipt Reports-July, 2014-$575,072.87

Ambulance Financial Report-August, 2014 – Charges-$14,700; Payments – $17,296.12; Adjustments-$2694.38

  Chamber Chatter Flyer-August, 2014

  Extension Office Flyer-Fall, 2014

  Detention Center Report-August, 2014-9 prisoners held for 117 days-44 Fallon County; 71 City of Baker and 2 Carter County; Total Income received for the month $150.00 from Carter County.


   State of MT-DOT-Fuel Tax Funds-September, 2014-$4,139.00                                                                       

   Bowers Oil and Gas, Inc.-July, 2014- Oil and Gas Royalties.-$11.64

   JK Cattle LLC-Septic Permit-$100.00


  Grant Close-Out-A letter was received from the FAA for the Grant Closeout of the Baker Municipal Airport Project in the amount of $1,675,803.

  Letter to Department of Commerce – Commissioner Ranum signed as Chairperson the letter to the Department of Commerce regarding the CTAP Planning Grant. Fallon County noted they would like assistance in development and implementation of other land use planning tools as appropriate and requested by local governments such as housing policies (Workforce Housing) and Continued Education and training opportunities through regular workshops offered throughout the region.

  Letter to Collect Debt -County Attorney Batterman sent a letter, per instructions of the County Commission and Landfill Manager, to Stallion of the Rockies, LTD.  This letter was sent to collect a debt in the amount of $18,781.71; Letter was sent certified mail on September 9th and Stallion was given until October 10, 2014 to pay in full.

  Meals on Wheels-During Project Assessment of Home Delivered Meals it was determined temperature checks should be performed on the routes.


   Don Buerkle, Board Member, attended.

   Letters of interest were received from:  Jason Coulter, Lani DeBuhr and Jerrid Geving. Courtney Dietz’s letter was received after the deadline due to misunderstanding of the ad. After reviewing the letters the Commission voted on those eligible. Lani DeBuhr and Jerrid Geving were appointed to fulfill the open positions.


    No one appeared for public comment.


   6:00 PM  RECESS



September 17, 2014


  PRESENT  Deb Ranum, Chairperson; William L. Randash and Steve Baldwin, members


   10:00 AM ADJOURN


s/Deb Ranum, Chairperson


s/Brenda J. Wood,

Clerk and Recorder


February 23, 2015

   9:00 AM  CONVENE

PRESENT  William L. Randash, Chairman; Steve Baldwin and Deb Ranum, Members

   9:00 AM  LaRita Huether, DOR met at the request of the Commission to discuss Personal Property for JoMax.

  10:00 AM Bobby Wiedmer, Road Foreman and Alba Higgins, Shop Foreman and Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder

  Road/Shop Report

  Road Work-They will be hauling Scoria for the next couple of days until able to haul from the Wang Pit again.

     Kenworth clutch-Alba feels they should have the clutch repaired on the Kenworth today.

   Truck-Fuel tank for one of the trucks is cracking; repairs will be made.

  Landfill Loader-T & E started on the conversion from phone to Satellite; they did not have everything they needed so they will be back.

   Blade-The computer software in one of the blades says it needs to be regenerated, they did a forced regen.  T & E is coming to look at it; they had this same problem with the same blade 1 ½ years ago.

   Tire Rama-Alba ordered 30 trailer and 30 drive tires, due to the extremely good price for quality tires.

  Gravel Roads-Commissioner Ranum asked how many miles of road need to be re-graveled; Bobby stated approximately 200 miles of roads.

   Coral Creek Road-Used the last of the Pinnow gravel on the Coral Creek Road.

   Bridger Road Use letter– Ken Dockweiler, Bridger feels the $150,000 billed to them by Fallon County, for damages to Fallon County roads, was quite high.  Bobby stated the figure he provided them with is accurate.

   Lights-Direct Electric will finish the rest of the lights in the County Shop this week.

    Anticline Road-Bobby feels there is approximately 12 miles of the Anticline Road that needs graveled. They are not using Wang gravel on the Anticline; they are using it in Ollie.

   10:30 AM  Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering joined.

   North City Shop Bridge-This bridge is located on Bonnevale Road; they would need to remove the chip/seal and store it at the old Landfill. They will need approximately 700 yards of cold mix and the Road Crew will do the work themselves, after the bridge is replaced.

  Upper Baker Lake – The Contractor doing the Upper Baker Lake project will be unable to complete the project until the ice thaws in the channel pipe. The Contractor would also like to be paid ahead of time for the materials they will be storing, (the Contractor has to pay for the materials before they are received). Commission granted permission to be billed for the materials stored by the Contractor; Shannon will request an invoice.

  Cooper Bridge-Shannon stated they still need an easement from the Bickle Cattle Company for the Cooper Bridge.

     Baker Lake Drainage Project-This project was discussed by the group.

   Landfill-The Commission will contact Barry Damschen, Landfill Engineer to find out if he plans to complete the permitting for the Landfill expansion. Commissioner Ranum felt Brosz Engineering was working on the long term Master Plan and Barry was doing the permitting. Commissioner Ranum stated, more than once, she has no minutes to support what she remembers. Commissioner Randash remembers Jon Brosz, Brosz Engineering had a plan that included hauling in rock from Wyoming to line the bottoms of the pits so trucks could drive on it, but felt Barry was working on the Master Plan.   

     Fletcher Creek Bridge-This bridge looks good except one area which may need reseeding.

    11:00 AM  Carla Brown, FCCOA Coordinator

     Roofing quote-The group discussed the roofing quote received. The quote was over $80,000 which requires the project to go to bid.  Carla will ask for bid specs to be written for the roofing project at the Baker Senior Center. This will then be advertised in the paper.



   County Mineral Search-Commissioner Ranum asked if the Commission was going to have Fallon County Abstract research the minerals owned by Fallon County.  Commissioner Baldwin made the motion to have Fallon County Abstract research all the minerals/royalty interest owned by Fallon County.  Commissioner Ranum seconds the motion.  No Discussion.  3 Ayes.  0 Nays.  Motion carried unanimously.


     No one appeared for Public Comment.


   Commissioner Ranum made the motion to recess. Commissioner Baldwin seconds the motion.  3 Ayes.  0 Nays.  Motion carried unanimously.

   Noon Recess

    1:15 PM  RECONVENE

    PRESENT William L. Randash, Chairman; Steve Baldwin and Deb Ranum, Members, Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder

    1:20 PM  Debbie Wyrick, Selena Nelson and Alba Higgins, Health Insurance Committee.

   Dental and Vision Insurance-Debbie explained they had earlier compared Dental and Vision rates with various companies. MACo came to discuss Health Insurance and presented rate information for Dental and Vision. MACo’s rates were comparable to the others with the exception; you do not have to have a minimum number of employees to be eligible to offer this benefit to the employees as other insurances require. Also, the number of employees will not affect the costs. They would like to offer these benefits to the employees, with the Commission’s permission.  Selena explained this can be placed on the cafeteria plan which is a win-win for everyone. Debbie explained there are no preferred providers like some of the plans; the employee sends the required information to the insurance company and they send the money to the employee.

  FMC can also come on board with Fallon County and offer to their employees. Debbie explained once you sign up, you cannot opt out for a year.  Alba further stated, if you do opt out, you cannot reapply for 2 years; there is no cost to the County this is all on the employee to pay. The Commissioners were all in favor of offering this to the employees.  Debbie will contact MACo and schedule them to come for open enrollment.

   1:45 PM  Richard Menger, Sanitarian

   ServSafe Certificate-Rich presented his Serv Safe Certificate to the Commission.

    Subdivision training-Rich stated the Subdivision Training was a very good training.  The course covered a lot of new laws and refreshed on the old laws. Rich feels Fallon County will be put back on the list for certifying within a year.

   Restoration Plan-Rich stated he reviewed the Baker Lake Restoration Plan. Jon Brosz, Brosz Engineering informed Rich they were putting the latest version of the Restoration Plan on CD. Commissioner Baldwin asked for (2) copies so (1) copy could be left with the Commission.

  Wetland Mitigation-Discussed possible mitigation sites because of the work completed on the Baker Lake. The Red Butte Dam was one of the sites discussed earlier but this site was removed from the list.  Commissioner Randash stated the County was hoping they would not have to use any sites to mitigate because the cattails are growing back.

   Lakeshore-Rich agrees at this time the lakeshore should not be touched; he suggested contacting FWP to see if Fallon County could use the South East portion of South Sandstone as a mitigation site.  Rich feels the lake will continue to fill in naturally and wants to be notified if anyone from a State or Federal Agency comes to review the lake. If the County plans any work in lakes and streams or if a mitigation site is found he would like to be involved.  Rich feels the work completed in the SE portion of the Upper Baker Lake will improve the water quality.


AMENDED FINDINGS OF FACT-The Commission approved and signed the Amended Findings of Fact and Order for Amended Plat of Lot 3 – Lohof-Green Acres Minor Subdivision. Original was given to Mary Grube, Planning Secretary to be filed.

   Parkview Rental Agreement-Commission signed the Rental Agreement for Apartment 103.

   Tipping Fees-Wanda Pinnow, Fair Board Member notified the Clerk and Recorder that some quotes/bids for Fallon County may be on the high side due to the high cost of tipping fees included in the projects. The Commission will keep that in mind when bidding projects.

     Also a taxpayer came in and was very frustrated because their bill for the tipping fees at the Landfill were very high and asked how the City/County expect people to clean up their properties when they have to pay such high costs. The Clerk and Recorder instructed the landowner to go to the City of Baker and get the paperwork as there is a new program in which those individuals disposing of homes can get some of their money back when they reclaim that property.

   Quotes- The Commission approved quotes, as approved by the Fair Board:  Direct Electric to complete electrical updates in the barn-$5,368.23; Upland to complete the ceiling in the new storage shed-$6,975.00.


  Commissioner Randash asked the Clerk and Recorder to look for minutes pertaining to who would be preparing the master plan etc. for the Landfill expansion. The Clerk and Recorder found minutes from August 6, 2014 and the Agreement signed October 27, 2014 for Barry Damschen Consulting, LLC to complete the Master Plan/Design, etc. for the expansion plan.


   2:50 PM  Darcy Wassmann-County Attorney

     Rifle Range Shooting Club-Darcy asked if the Club was in charge of the Rifle Range or the building or what goes on at the Rifle Range. Commissioner Baldwin stated the Rifle Range Board wanted the County to allow them to hire 3 people or a Range Master.  The Commission did not want to do that until there is more evidence of the usage.  Commissioner Baldwin stated since they received Grant Funds they aren’t sure if Range Masters are required and stated he envisioned the Gun Range to be run much like the Golf Course by way of collecting Membership dues.  Darcy stated she does not feel the Gun Club can hire an employee to operate a County Building. This will have to be researched.

   3:00 PM  Joe Janz, joined

    Range Master-Joe stated the Range Master is someone certified to instruct or act on behalf of the facility.

  Century Construction-The letter terminating the lease was mailed to Century.

Fidelity-Discussed the County having the property surveyed and decide how much land will be leased to Fidelity for storage of their tanks, etc.

    FWP Contract-A copy of the contract was given to Darcy and Cordell Perkins, FWP for South Sandstone. Joe stated he would further discuss the agreement with Darcy. Jasen Wyrick is having problems getting paid from FWP. The agreement recorded in the Clerk and Recorder’s office is between Fallon County and FWP and was reviewed again.


Project Report from DuWayne Bohle-Iron Horse Park-No further progress; Fairgrounds Cold Storage Building-No further progress; Gun Range Building-Installing boiler tie-ins and wall siding; South Sandstone Project-No further progress


Taylor Grazing FY2014-$876.14

    Splash Park Plans-TNT Diversified-$50.00

  3:58 PM  Debbie Wyrick, Deputy Clerk and Recorder

Debbie was asked to join the Commissioners

Commissioner Districts-Commissioner Randash asked Debbie about the area and population figures for the Commissioner Districts.

     Life Insurance-Debbie was also asked about increasing the County’s Group Life Insurance policy on each employee from $10,000 to $20,000. Debbie stated the Life Insurance now pays $10,000 plus $10,000 additional for accidental death.  This is tied to the County’s Health Insurance and provided by MT Joint Powers Trust.  Commissioner Ranum discussed giving this benefit to volunteers. Debbie stated Fallon County has no way of providing this to employees that work less than 20 hours per week or to volunteers.

  4:15 PM  Julie Straub, Human Resource Manager

     OSHA Training-Julie stated the cost to attend would be $849.00.  Julie has made commitments to attend trainings that are close to the area. The Commission agreed to have Julie wait until later to possibly attend.

     Safety Updates-Julie is running out of safety books and would like to add FMLA to the books currently used for new hires. The Safety Committee also wants to use them for refreshers. Would like to order 250 each for $.99 each; Julie has funding in the Safety Budget.  Permission granted.

  Safety Committee-The Safety Committee is revamping forms; the FC Safety report would replace the current incident report.  The Supervisor would come to the committee if there was an issue that was not resolved and brain storm the issue with the Safety Committee. Also, Safety Committee action form and Witness forms are new.  Julie would like the Commission to review the forms and give feed back to her to give to the Safety Committee. Julie is also working on another form for Vehicle/Property damage.       



    Commissioner Ranum made the motion to approve the September 2-September 4, 2014 Minutes with grammar and spelling corrections and to correct the verbiage (Man Camp) to (Contractor Camp) Commissioner Baldwin seconds the motion.  3 Aye.  0 Nays.  Motion Carried.

    5:00 ADJOURN

   Commissioner Ranum made the motion to recess. Commissioner Baldwin seconds the motion.  3 Ayes.  0 Nays.  Motion carried unanimously.


s/William L. Randash, Chairman


s/Brenda J. Wood, Clerk and Recorder