Commissioner proceedings

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2016

9:00AM CONVENE PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Deb Ranum, William L. Randash, Members; Lani DeBuhr, Clerk

FALLON COUNTY COURTHOUSE

9:00AM VAULT ITEMS & ORGANIZATION

Present: DuWayne Bohle, Special Projects Worker

DuWayne Bohle gave the Commission updates on the projects he has been working on.

Rifle Range Boiler- Duwayne said a boiler certificate holder needs to be designated and identified on the Rifle Range Boiler. DuWayne said it can be any low pressure certificate holder that works for the County and Shane Bettenhausen, Rifle Range Manager, said he would consider studying for the certification. The Commission said Lynda Herbst, Inside Building Maintenance, has her low pressure license and could possibly be the designated person for the Rifle Range boiler.

Vault Items- DuWayne said he was able to retrieve the books for Larita Huether, MT Dept. of Revenue Assessor, which were inadvertently disposed of during the vault reorganization.

Community Service Help- DuWayne said Linda Kennel, Community Service Director, has sent a community service worker to help DuWayne recently but the person doesn’t always show up when he is supposed to so DuWayne asked Linda to stop sending him to help. The Commission agreed with this decision.

9:15am- DuWayne Bohle left the meeting.

9:15AM COMMISSION WORK SESSION

CO-CHAIR DISCUSSION– The Commission discussed designating one of its members as Co-Chair to preside over the meetings when the Chair is absent. The Commission designated Commissioner Ranum as Co-Chair.

MINUTES APPROVAL-

Commissioner Ranum made the motion to approve the Commission Minutes for the week of February 1- 5, 2016. Commissioner Randash seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

BOARD RESIGNATION-

Michele Gray submitted a resignation letter on February 1, 2016 stating she was resigning from the from the Planning Board effective immediately.

Commissioner Randash made the motion to accept Michele Gray’s resignation from the Planning Board. Commissioner Ranum seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

RATE OF PAY APPROVALS-

The Commission approved and signed the Rate of Pay Approval form for Paul Christ, Landfill employee, for completing one year of employment.

The Commission approved and signed the Rate of Pay Approval form for Andy Fujimori, IT Tech, for completing six months of employment.

PURCHASE APPROVAL REQUESTS-

COMMISSION- The Commission reviewed and approved a quote from Direct Electric for dimmable ballasts to be installed in the Commissioner’s Office.

LIBRARY- The Commission reviewed and approved a quote from Direct Electric for removing and replacing electrical boxes from the floor for the new flooring in the Library.

FAIR- The Commission reviewed and did not approve a quote from Direct Electric for adding switches and lights in the horse stall of the Big Barn at this time. They will contact the Fair Board to get more information regarding the need for this work to be done before making a decision.

PARKS- The Commission reviewed and approved a quote from the Microsoft Store for a new tablet to be purchased for Scott Rabbit, Parks Director, as his tablet is no longer operable.

IT DEPT- The Commission did not approve the quote from Alien Vault for a Security System for the County at this time. The Commission said they learned of security systems other Counties use at the Mid-Winter MACo Conference and would like Andy Fujimori, IT Tech, to research these systems before making a decision.

EASTERN PLAINS ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CORP. (EPEDC) CONTRIBUTION-

The Commission discussed contributing funds to the EPEDC as they have in years past and decided on a contribution of $22,000 for the 2016 fiscal year.

9:45am- Dale Butori, Weed Supervisor, joined the meeting.

Dale Butori asked the Commission if they still approve of him purchasing a new side by side. Dale said the bids are coming in at $13,500-$14,500. Dale said the County will pay half of the side by side with the other half being funded by the Weed Grant he receives each year. The Commission said they still approve of this purchase and would like the older side by side this new one will replace to go to the Fairgrounds. Dale said the side by side is powerful enough that he suggests only adults at the Fairgrounds operate it and the Commission said they would pass this information on to the Fair Board.

9:55am- Dale Butori left the meeting.

10:00AM ROAD UPDATES

Present: Alba Higgins, Shop Foreman; Bobby Wiedmer, Road Supervisor; Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering

SHOP UPDATES- Alba Higgins gave the Commission updates on the equipment and vehicles that are being serviced or repaired this week.

10:15am- Alba Higgins left the meeting.

PROJECT UPDATES-

Kramlick Bridge– Bobby Wiedmer said Rod Kramlick contacted him and asked if additional seeding was going to be done along the Kramlick Bridge. Bobby said he talked to John Peila with Diamond J Construction and John said they will come back and do the seeding.

Upper Baker Lake Department of Natural Resources (DNRC) Construction Permit- The Commission was notified by the DNRC that the Construction Permit they gave for the Primary Spillway Rehabilitation work on the Upper Baker Lake needs to be closed out. Shannon Hewson said to close the project out he will have to update the operating and maintenance manual and turn it into the DNRC with the as-builts of the project.

Calumet Rd. Bridge– The Commission received the 404 Permit from the Army Corps of Engineers for the Calumet Rd. Bridge. Shannon said now all the permits have been received and they are just waiting on the right of way easements to come in from the landowners. Commissioner Baldwin said he will call the landowners who have not returned these easements.

Westmore and Dryfork Bridges- Shannon said the Contractors interested in submitting a bid for the construction of the Westmore and Dryfork Bridges are having a hard time finding gravel to place underneath the culverts at a reasonable price. Bobby said because of this the bid specs have been amended to take the gravel out of the bid so the County can provide it rather than paying a high price for gravel if the contractor provides it. Bobby said Fred Houzvicka has a crossing on his land and Fred said local landowners could use it to get to their homes when the Westmore Bridge construction takes place since a by-pass won’t be built.

10:30AM WESTMORE AND DRYFORK BRIDGE CULVERT BID OPENINGS

Present: Bobby Wiedmer, Road Supervisor; Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering

Commissioner Baldwin opened the only bid submitted for the Westmore and Dryfork Bridge Culverts and it was read aloud. Forterra (formally known as Cretex) submitted a bid of $360,668.02 for the Dryfork Bridge and a bid of $414,680.40 for the Westmore Bridge. The bid did not require a bid bond and did not contain any addendums. Commissioner Baldwin asked if anyone had comments or wanted to discuss the bid. Shannon Hewson said the bid for both culverts is approximately $190,000 more than was expected and 20-30% higher than the culverts cost last year. Shannon said since they were the only bidder he would like to contact them about their bid to find out why the cost came in so high and potentially negotiate the price with them.

Commissioner Ranum made the motion to postpone awarding the bid so that Shannon Hewson can contact Forterra about the bid price. Commissioner Randash seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried.

10:40am- Bobby Wiedmer and Shannon Hewson left the meeting.

11:00AM BAKER CORRIDOR STUDY/MONTANA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (MDT) FOLLOW UP

Present: Shane Mintz, MDT District 4 District Administrator; Jim Frank, MDT District 4 Project Engineer; Steve Heidner, MDT District 4 Project Engineer; Mary Grube, Planner Administrative Assistant

The MDT Representatives came to discuss the future of the Baker Corridor Study with the Commission. The items discussed were:

 The Commission said the Keystone Pipeline was expected to be a funding resource for infrastructure such as the truck by-pass but now that the future of the Keystone is uncertain they aren’t sure what the future of this plan is.

 Shane Mintz said even if the Keystone Pipeline doesn’t come to the area the US12/MT7 Intersection is still going to be a big problem and suggested improving it on a short term basis with a long term solution in the future. Shane said the Intersection is currently graded at a B but in 30 years with a slow growth rate the grade would fall to an F. Shane said if a traffic light were installed and parking spaces were removed by the corners of the intersection then the grade in 30 years would most likely stay at a B.

 The Commission and Shane reviewed the various options in the Baker Corridor Study to determine which option would be feasible. Shane said the least expensive, short term solution would be to implement Improvement Option 12b that would provide an alternative truck route on Milwaukee Avenue and its intersections with US12 and MT 7, as well as the North 3rd Street W at-grade railroad crossing.

 Commissioner Randash said an alternative truck route along Railroad Avenue would be easier to implement but Shane and Commissioner Baldwin disagreed, stating having to move power lines and widening the road as difficulties with this option.

 Shane said they could also go with Improvement Option 7 that would involve adding a narrow, striped median at all four intersection approaches and widening the road by removing on-street parking spaces near the intersection to allow for additional turning space. The Commission said this option would prove difficult with the parking being as limited along Main Street as it is.

 Improvement Option #10 along Willow Lane was discussed and everyone voiced concern with this plan because it is a private road and would require the landowner’s cooperation to implement it.

 Shane suggested the Commission seriously consider Option 12b as it is the only option that would add additional capacity without having to move buildings, power poles and remove parking.

 Improvement Option #13 that would convert Montana Ave (US 12) and Railroad Avenue to a one-way couplet to improve truck circulation through downtown was discussed.

 Shane said there is Fast Act funding available through the MDT for major projects but this project would not be considered “major” and therefore not eligible for this funding.

 Shane said they do have some flexibility in using money for smaller projects and suggested the Commission choose an Improvement Option they want to implement and then the money from MDT could be used to complete the study on that specific option. Shane said in order for MDT to commit these funds for an additional study they would need the County and City’s participation in funding the project and their commitment to move forward with the project once the study is complete. Shane said the project would last 5 years with design and construction.

12:15pm- Shane Mintz, Jim Frank, Steve Heidner and Mary Grube left the meeting.

12:15PM NOON RECESS

Commissioner Ranum made the motion to take a noon recess. Commissioner Randash seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

1:15PM RECONVENE

PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Deb Ranum, William L. Randash, Members; Lani DeBuhr, Clerk

FALLON COUNTY COURTHOUSE

1:15PM PUBLIC COMMENT

Joe Janz, Outside Maintenance Supervisor, came in for Public Comment and asked the Commission to be thinking about replacing the roof on the Library since shingles get blown off every time the wind blows. The Commission said there is funding in their Capital Improvement Plan to replace the roof and they will discuss it.

1:25pm- Joe Janz left the meeting.

1:30PM COMMISSIONER WORK SESSION CONTINUED

GENERAL JOURNAL ENTRY APPROVAL- The Commission reviewed and Commissioner Baldwin, as Chairman, signed the following Journal Entries: Journal #390-Correcting coding for Library claims; Journal #391- Moving U.S. Treasury Revenue from County Rural Fire Chief to Plevna Rural Fire Misc. Revenue.

BOARD AGENDAS/MINUTES-

The Commission reviewed Board Agendas and Minutes.

REVENUES-

The Commission reviewed revenues received during the week.

DEPARTMENT REPORTS/NOTICES-

The Commission reviewed Department Reports, Newsletters and Notices.

EMAILS-

The Commission reviewed emails sent to them from State agencies and other entities that required no discussion, action or decision.

2:00PM MECHANICAL TECHNOLOGY INC. (MTI) MAINTENANCE CONTRACT DISCUSSION

Present: John Easley, MTI Service Technician; Len Pike, MTI Service Manager, Lynda Herbst, Inside Building Maintenance Supervisor

John Easley told the Commission he repaired the roof top unit in the Sheriff’s Department and suggested they install a cat walk around the unit as it could be dangerous for someone to try and work on it if the roof is icy, wet or snowy. Len Pike said the roof top unit is quite complicated so he asked the Test and Balance Engineer for the Dispatch/Sheriff remodel project for a copy of the balance report on the unit and was told he couldn’t find it. Len said Trent Harbaugh, Sheriff, said a number of his jail cells get cold and he suspects the roof top unit wasn’t balanced after installation and this is causing it to not serve the cold areas as it should. Len said they were not a part of the remodel project but fortunately they can put an alarm control on the unit that is compatible with MTI controls, allowing them to monitor the unit from Billings as they do the Court House System. Len said this would allow them to troubleshoot and determine the problems with the unit and possibly having a local serviceman do the repairs to avoid the $1500+ cost of having an MTI Technician travel from Billings to Baker to do the repair.

The Commission asked Len about boiler certification classes and said they are considering having the Rifle Range Manager get his boiler certification. Len said he would send them information on their upcoming classes. Len said the person would attend the classes in Billings, do 40 hours of training with Lynda Herbst and then would be able to take the exam. Len said if they didn’t want to go this route, Lynda could be the designated person to take care of the Rifle Range Boiler.

2:20pm- John Easley, Len Pike and Lynda Herbst left the meeting.

2:30PM COMMISSION MINUTES PUBLISHED IN FALLON COUNTY TIMES DISCUSSION

Present: Drury Phebus, Member of the Public

Drury Phebus came to talk to the Commission about continuing to publish the Commission Minutes in the Fallon County Times (FCT) as he read it was being considered by the Commission to stop publishing them. Drury said he enjoys reading them in the newspaper and hopes they do not stop publishing them. The Commission said a final decision has not been made and the only reason they are considering it is because of the cost. Drury said he asked FCT if they could give the County a discount to help with the cost but was told they couldn’t do that and the cost was only $1,200 per month. The Commission gave Drury an expenditure report showing the cost of the minutes which is on average $3,000 per month ($36,000 annually) for the publishing of the abbreviated minutes and $6,000 per month ($72,000 annually) for the publishing of the full minutes. The Commission said they understand Drury’s view point and that has been the reason they have continued to publish the minutes but now that revenues are decreasing they are having to look at ways to lower expenses. Commissioner Baldwin said he has often thought it should be treated as a “public announcement” in the newspaper but then knows the cost of it would fall to the newspaper which doesn’t seem right. Drury asked if he could go discuss this further with the FCT to see if he can convince them to work with the County and the Commission gave him permission.

2:40pm- Drury Phebus left the meeting.

3:00PM MONTANA ASSOCIATION OF COUNTIES (MACo) DENTAL/VISION PLAN UPDATES

Present: Pam Walling, MACo Health Care Trust Administration Marketing Coordinator; Debbie Wyrick, Deputy Clerk and Recorder

Pam Walling came to give the Commission updates on the MACo Dental and Vision Benefit Plan County Employees are participating in. Pam said the program is going well with good participation from the employees. Pam said the preliminary rates for the plan will be set next Wednesday and finalized Mid-March with the Dental Plan not being expected to change at all but the Vision Plan will be changing. Pam said they are planning on increasing the allowance for glasses and vision exams which will cause the rates to increase most likely from $10 to $12. Pam said the Commission doesn’t need to do anything at this time since they signed a three year contract last year for the benefits.

The Commission asked Pam how the MACo Health Insurance Plan works. Pam said it similar to the County’s self-funded plan with a few differences. Pam said a key difference is how the County rates are set with Counties who have good claim history being able to get a rate decrease up to 10% below average whereas Counties with bad claim history can have their rates increased to a maximum of a 5% increase above average. Pam said these rates are adjusted annually and pooled members can opt out of the plan at the end of the year if they aren’t pleased with the rates. Pam said the average medical rate increase for last year was 0%, in 2014 it was 3%, in 2013 in was 4.2% and in 2012 it was a 6% increase. Pam said the nice thing about MACo is they send out the rate increases in February of each year to pooled members so they have time to decide if they want to stay in the plan or not.

3:30- Pam Walling and Debbie Wyrick left the meeting.

3:30PM STANHOPE/HIGH PLAINS GROUP DICUSSION

Present: Jason Rittal, Eastern Plains Economic Development Corporation Executive Director via Conference Call; Ryan Rittal, Stahly Engineering via Conference Call; Rich Menger, Sanitarian; Darcy Wassman County Attorney; Mary Grube, Planner Administrative Assistant

Jason Rittal told the Commission Forrest Sanderson, Contracted Planner, notified him that the Preliminary Plat approval given to High Plains Group for their development three years ago has expired. Forrest said a one year extension could be given since there have been some mitigating circumstances involved but it would need to happen quickly. Jason said he notified Patrick Schumacher with High Plains Group about this and Patrick said he has no interest in moving forward with the project unless they can get a multi-year extension for the Preliminary Plat since there is a chance the plan may have to change in the future. Jason said he isn’t sure if this is statutorily possible as he thinks Montana Code Annotated only authorizes a one year extension. Mary Grube said they can request a one year extension and if and when that extension expires they have the option to request another extension. Jason said Forrest mentioned this may be a possibility but if so, High Plains Group would need to put up a bond towards it for it to be extended again. Mary said if they hear back from High Plains Group and they say they want an extension before the next City Council meeting the extension could be approved at that time.

Jason said he is going to discuss this with Patrick tomorrow and will let him know the County will do what they can to assist them in extending the Preliminary Plat. The Commission asked what their options are if High Plains Group decides to not request an extension and won’t sign the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that has been drafted between them and the Stanhope Water/Sewer District. Jason said if this happens he sees three options available: First, try to get an easement from them to build the line through their development. Then at the time High Plains Group wants to develop the land it would be their responsibility to build a system that can tap into the line. Jason said if they won’t give the County an easement they can either build the line so it goes around their development or buy the land from them in order to build the line through the development. Darcy Wassman suggested setting a “drop dead” date that notifies them what will happen if they don’t cooperate. Jason agreed and said they are still under a time crunch and need to be mindful of this. The Commission agreed and asked Jason to inquire about what they would sell the land for when speaking with Patrick since that is an option.

3:50pm- Jason Rittal, Ryan Rittal and Darcy Wassman left the meeting.

4:00pm- Mary Grube and Rich Menger left the meeting.

4:00PM WEED BOARD RESOLUTION

The Commission reviewed the final draft of the Weed Board Resolution.

Commissioner Randash made the motion to adopt the Weed Board Resolution #2016-4. Commissioner Ranum seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

4:10PM CREDIT CARD POLICY

The Commission reviewed the final draft of the Fallon County Credit Card Policy.

Commissioner Randash made the motion to adopt the Fallon County Credit Card Policy. Commissioner Ranum seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

4:15PM COUNTY’S ANNUAL REPORT

The Commission reviewed the County’s Annual Report and the report is filed in the Clerk and Recorder’s Office.

4:30PM SECURITY FOR FAIRGROUNDS EVENTS

Trent Harbaugh, Sheriff, was unable to attend the meeting therefore it was canceled.

4:30pm- Westmore and Dryfork Culvert Bid

Shannon Hewson with Brosz Engineering called and said he spoke with an engineer at Forterra and he said they made a mistake on their bid submittal for the Westmore and Dryfork Bridge culverts and will be submitting a revised bid later this week.

5:00PM EVENING RECESS

Commissioner Randash made the motion to take an evening recess. Commissioner Ranum seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2016

1:00PM TOWN HALL MEETING WITH GREG GIANFORTE, GOVERNER CANDIDATE

The Commission attended the Town Hall Meeting that Greg Gianforte, Governer Candidate, held at Thee Garage.

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2016

9:00AM RECONVENE

PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Deb Ranum, William L. Randash, Members; Lani DeBuhr, Clerk

FALLON COUNTY COURTHOUSE

10:00AM CLOSED SESSION/PERSONNEL

11:00AM STANHOPE WATER/SEWER PROJECT DISCUSSION

This meeting was moved to occur later in the day due to the bid opening meeting not being able to be moved.

11:00AM DRYFORK AND WESTMORE BOX CULVERTS CONSTRUCTION BID OPENING

Present: Bobby Wiedmer, Road Supervisor; Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering; Jon Brosz, Bronsz Engineering; John Peila, Diamond J Construction; Leon Clause, Dick Anderson Construction; Jerry Krushensky, J & S Construction; David Shepherd, Shep’s Welding; Shawn Hofferber, JR Civic; Frank Pohlman, Coon Construction; Shaun Williamson, Coon Construction; Bethanie Suacina, Wanzek Construction; Grant Clingingsmith, Knife Rifer; Tyler Youderian, Youderian Construction; Justin Biehl, COP Construction, Jasen Wyrick, Wyrick Construction

Shannon Hewson opened the bids submitted for the Dryfork and Westmore Box Culverts Construction and they were read aloud. All bids had Addendum 1 and 2 with the bid bond in place. The bid amounts were:

Contractor

Base Bid Schedule I (Westmore)

Base Bid Schedule II (Dryfork)

Schedule I & II Total

Mobilization Deduction if awarded both projects

Schedule I & II Total with Deduction

Smith Contracting

$417,295

$305,647

$$722,942

($18,900)

$704,042

Coon Construction

$405,837

$405,837

$811,674

($2,499)

$809,175

Nelcon Inc.

$572,038

$387,011.50

$959,049.50

($20,000)

$939,049.50

Diamond J Construction

$387,442.50

$271,630

$659,072.50

($9,172.50)

$649,000

Youderian Construction

$299,999

$236,377

$536,376

($3,376)

$533,000

JR Civil

$745,255.13

$481,304.16

$1,226,559.29

$1,226,559.29

Dick Anderson Construction

$644,385

$461,690

$1,106,075

($35,000)

$1,071,075

Battle Ridge Builders

$301,532

$198,456

$499,988

($6,000)

$493,988

Shep’s Welding

$268,050.74

$204,426.93

$472,477.67

($14,000)

$458,477.67

Knife River

$392,044.75

$263,248.50

$655,293.25

($13,000)

$642,293.25

J & S Construction

$462,982.25

$317,793.23

$780,775.48

($16,000)

$764,775.48

COP Construction

$670,447

$429,941

$1,100,388

($15,000)

$1,085,388

Wanzek Construction

$461,555.50

$333,332.10

$794,887.60

($10,000)

$784,887.60

Shannon recommended the Commission postpone awarding the bid to give him an opportunity to review the bids and calculations before making a recommendation to the Commission.

Commissioner Ranum made the motion to table awarding the Westmore and Dryfork Box Culvert Construction bid to give Shannon Hewson time to check the bids and calculations. Commissioner Randash seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

11:30am- All present left the meeting.

11:30AM COMMISSIONER WORK SESSION CONTINUED

The Commission went to look at the exhaust fans that were installed in the Big Barn at the Fairgrounds. The Commission looked at the stall and round pen lights in the Big Barn at the Fairgrounds and said they are old and should be replaced.

PURCHASE APPROVAL REQUESTS-

PARKS- The Commission reviewed and approved a quote from Kenco Security for security cameras to be installed at Iron Horse Park.

FAIR- The Commission reviewed and approved a quote from Direct Electric to install switches and lights in the horse stall and round pen area of the Big Barn.

RIFLE RANGE- The Commission reviewed and approved a quote from Direct Electric to install lighting on the artillery side of the range and to move the red and green target lights and switches to the 20 yard line.

RATE OF PAY APPROVALS-

The Commission approved and signed the Rate of Pay Approval form for DeLayne Robbins, Health Department employee, for completing one year of employment.

The Commission approved and signed the Rate of Pay Approval form for Tricia Shipman, Justice of Court employee, for completing one year of employment.

The Commission approved and signed the Rate of Pay Approval form for Stacey Moore, Library Services Director, for completing one year of employment.

The Commission approved and signed the Rate of Pay Approval form for Mary Alice Havens, Senior Citizen Substitute Bus Driver, for completing one year of employment. 7 | P a g e

12:00PM NOON RECESS

Commissioner Randash made the motion to take a noon recess. Commissioner Ranum seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

1:15PM CLOSED SESSION CONTINUED/PERSONNEL

2:00PM STANHOPE WATER/SEWER PROJECT DISCUSSION

Present: Jason Rittal, Eastern Plains Economic Development Corporation Executive Director via Conference Call; Ryan Rittal, Stahly Engineering via Conference Call; Rich Menger, Sanitarian; Darcy Wassman, County Attorney; Mary Grube, Planner Administrative Assistant

Jason Rittal called in to give everyone present updates on the conversation he had with Patrick Schumacker with High Plains Group. Jason said High Plains Group submitted a letter to the Planning Department asking for a plat extension for at least three years or as long as the statute will allow. Jason said this request will be presented to the City Council by Forrest Sanderson and Mary Grube at the February 17th City Council meeting and Chuck Davison with High Plains Group will be there as well. The Commission asked if High Plains Group would need to put up a bond if a three year extension was granted and Mary said she has been looking in statute that dictates a bond is required but cannot find any mention of it. Jason and Mary said they will talk to Forrest about it further. Jason said Patrick and Forrest will be having a conversation next week to give Forrest a chance to explain their options to Patrick that will hopefully help facilitate things moving forward. Jason said they will discuss possibly having the City of Baker issue a “will service” letter to High Plains Group that will state they will build the line to a size that will accommodate their development capacity in the future. Jason said this may not be the best option since the development of the land is so uncertain at this time but it is an option. Jason said he also asked Patrick for a sales price and Patrick said they didn’t want to take a loss on the property and would sell it at their break even number of $500,000 to $550,000.

Jason said with this information in hand he sees four options available:

Option 1: High Plains Group signs the original MOU with the specification they will pay $100,000 to tie into the system when and if they develop the land. Jason said this is the ideal option if High Plains Group will agree to it. Option 2: Build the system up Pleisner and go around the High Plains development. Ryan said this option would be less expensive due to not having to deal with the water issues under the development but Jason said it may not be the best option for future development of the High Plains land.

Option 3: Request an easement from High Plains Group to bring the line through their land without asking for the $100,000 or renegotiate the amount.

Option 4: Purchase the land from High Plains and then the County can do what they want with the line. The Commission and Jason agreed this was the worst option as the price is high and the County isn’t interested in buying land.

Jason said he would like to table a decision until after the City Council meeting to see what happens with High Plains Group’s extension request and the Commission agreed.

3:00pm- All present left the meeting.

3:00PM ADJOURN

Commissioner Ranum made the motion to adjourn the meeting. Commissioner Randash seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

_______________________________________________________________________________________

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2016

9:00AM CONVENE PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Deb Ranum, William L. Randash, Members; Lani DeBuhr, Clerk

FALLON COUNTY COURTHOUSE

9:00AM LAND LEASE DISCUSSION

Present: Fred Hoff, County Land Lessee

Fred Hoff came in to discuss the new land lease he received from the Commission. Fred asked if the wording of the lease can be changed to “the equivalent of 80 AUMS” instead of “will run no more than 80 AUMS on premise at one time”. Fred said his pasture is tied into a BLM piece of land he leases and he often puts out 160-250 head to graze the land for a few days. Fred said he does not consistently graze the land with that volume of cattle, only does it on a short term basis. The Commission asked if the BLM land was fenced off from the County land and Fred said no, they run together. Fred said the AUMS for both pieces of land is 93 which equals 93 cattle grazing the land for a month.

9:12am- Darcy Wassman, County Attorney, joined the meeting.

The Commission asked Darcy to give her opinion on Fred’s request. Fred told Darcy he would like the lease to reflect how he rotates his cows to graze. Fred said he puts the number of cattle in the pasture for the appropriate number of days that would equal 80 AUMS. Fred said he doesn’t want to overgraze it but wants the lease to account for the way he grazes his land and Darcy said she could change the language to reflect it.

9:15am- Fred Hoff left the meeting.

9:15AM COUNTY ATTORNEY UPDATES

Present: Darcy Wassman, County Attorney

Gravel Contract- The Commission reviewed and signed the final draft of the Gravel Contract between Fallon County and Wyrick Construction to purchase large quantities of crushed gravel.

Health Board Resolution- Darcy Wassman said she sent the resolution to Kim Cuppy, Health Nurse, to review. Darcy advised the Commission the Health Board should be an Authoritative Board as the things they are responsible for warrant it. The Commission said they don’t have a problem making the board authoritative but want the Commission to remain members of the board and involved. Darcy said that wouldn’t be a problem as the Board is composed of seven members and would need at least one of the Commissioner’s in session to establish a five member quorum. The Commission said they will inform the Health Board they would like to be kept informed on their activities if the Commission is unable to be present at a meeting.

Employee Evaluations- The Commission and Darcy discussed the best way to evaluate the performance of an employee the Commission is responsible for supervising before authorizing a rate of pay increase. The Commission said they find it difficult to evaluate employees they supervise as they don’t work with them closely enough to accurately determine the quality of their performance. Darcy asked if they could possibly have the people the employee works closely with help evaluate him/her. The Commission said they will have Julie Straub, Human Resource Manager, join the meeting to get her opinion on the matter.

9:30am- Julie Straub, Human Resource Manager, joined the meeting.

The Commission shared with Julie Straub what they and Darcy had been discussing in regards to evaluating employees. The Commission asked Julie her opinion on having employees evaluate other employees. Julie said those types of evaluations are called peer evaluations and she cautioned the Commission in using this method as it would set a precedence in which everyone would need to be evaluated this way. The Commission said they think this type of evaluation should be used on an employee who other employees are very dependent on. Darcy asked if the Commission could solicit feedback from other employees rather than doing peer evaluations. Julie said yes they could but it would need to be specific feedback on the performance of the job, not the person’s character or personality. The Commission said they recently were given a Rate of Pay Approval Form to sign but not given the chance to evaluate the employee prior to signing the approval form. Julie said she thought she gave the Commission the evaluation form before the Rate of Pay Approval form and the Commission said they did not receive it. Julie said if they have misgivings about signing the Rate of Pay Approval Form for an employee they have the right to voice those concerns before signing the form. The Commission said they have never been given evaluation forms before signing the Rate of Pay Approval Forms they are given to sign and asked why. Julie said if they aren’t the ones doing the evaluation on the employee they aren’t privy to this information. The Commission asked how they aren’t privy to the information if they are the ones responsible for authorizing pay increases that should be dependent on the employee’s performance. Julie said it is policy but could be changed. Darcy suggested changing the policy as the Commission should know an employee’s performance if they are approving their pay and said it would also be a good way to open up conversations with supervises on dealing with employee issues. Julie said she talks with supervisors when she gets the evaluations from them but hasn’t had a poor evaluation yet to address. Julie gave the Commission copies of the old evaluation form and a new, revised version she made for them to use in evaluating employees.

10:07am- Darcy Wassman and Julie Straub left the meeting.

10:00AM ROAD UPDATES

Present: Bobby Wiedmer, Road Supervisor; Alba Higgins, Shop Foreman; Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering

Shop Updates- Alba Higgins told the Commission he is looking into purchasing air dryers for two of his air compressors. Alba asked the Commission what process they would like him to take when it comes to recalls on County vehicles. Commissioner Baldwin said he would like Alba to take care of the recalls unless it is a safety issue recall, then the vehicle should be sent to a mechanic in town to fix.

Blades- Alba asked the Commission if they were still considering purchasing three blades next year. Alba said if they are they should have the blades go out to bid with a delivery date of July 1st. Alba asked if the snow wings will be included in the blade bids also. The Commission said they would like to purchase the blades but it will be dependent on revenues. Bobby said there is nothing wrong with the blades right now but wants to make sure they don’t miss the 5 year window for the buy-back program when trading them. Alba expects the blades to be approximately $100,000 each, with one coming out of the road budget, one out of the bridge budget and one out of the capital improvement budget. The Commission asked if the snow wings have to be purchased right away and Alba said they are in poor shape but could wait until 2018-19 to be purchased with the next set of blades. The Commission asked Bobby and Alba to identify the blades they would like to be traded out first.

Westmore and Dryfork Bridge Box Culverts Bid Reviews- Shannon Hewson gave the Commission the detailed bid tabulations for the Westmore and Dryfork Box Culvert Construction Bids that were submitted last week. Shannon said he and Jon Brosz reviewed the two lowest bids in detail and are suggesting they send out Statement of Qualifications form to the lowest bidder to make sure the contractor has done similar jobs and has the equipment and capability to do the job since they haven’t worked with them before. Shannon said he would also like to have the contractor resubmit his contractor sheet to ensure all contractor information is laid out clearly. The Commission agreed to all of Shannon’s suggestions and will wait to award the bid until the requested information is received.

Shannon said Forterra submitted a revised bid for the Westmore and Dryfork Box Culverts due to errors in their initial bid. The revised bid total for both box culverts is $679,923.82 and Shannon recommended the Commission accept the bid and award the job to Forterra.

Commissioner Randash made the motion to award the construction of the Westmore and Dryfork Box Culverts to Forterra for the amount of $679,923.82. Commissioner Ranum seconded the motion. Commissioner Baldwin asked if there was a need for further discussion and there was none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays.

Calumet Rd. Box Culvert- Shannon told the Commission the Calumet Rd Box Culvert Construction Invitation to Bid is going out to bid this week and the bid opening is set for March 7, 2016 at 10:15am.

10:30AM WESTMORE AND DRYFORK BRIDGE LANDOWNER MEETING

Present: Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering; Bobby Wiedmer, Road Supervisor; Fred Houzvicka, Landowner; Bryce Huft, Landowner; Alvin Wenz, Landowner

Shannon Hewson gave the landowners present detailed drawings of the Westmore and Dryfork Box Culverts Construction to review. Shannon said the project should start around July 1st and has a completion deadline of October 1st. The landowners said they hope the completion date is kept as they move cattle in October and will need that road open. Fred Houzvicka asked about the velocity change these culverts may produce as he has alfalfa in the area around the culvert and is concerned about potential increased erosion. Shannon said they can look at the area around the culvert when they are on-site next and explained the velocity measurements in the design and how it will affect the outflow of water.

Shannon said the road is expected to be closed for 21 days and a by-pass will not be built. Fred said he has a small crossing on his land that local landowners could use. The Commission asked if anything needs to be done to make the road passable and Fred said it could use some scoria, have the sides recut and an approach put up to the road. Bobby said they will make sure these things get done so it is passable for the landowners. Shannon suggested putting a “road closed” sign on the road while construction is happening to reroute regular traffic although the local landowners can use it to get to the crossing on Fred’s land. Shannon said the use of Fred’s crossing would have to be a mutual agreement with Fred and the landowners and the County would not be a part of this. Fred said a few contractors contacted him about having a place to put dirt during construction. Shannon said he and Bobby Wiedmer will work with the contractor who is awarded the project about placement of dirt. Shannon said an inspector will be on-site and the seeding will be done in the fall when the project is complete. Shannon said a part of the fence will be torn out during construction and new fencing will go in when project is complete also.

11:00am- Shannon Hewson, Bobby Wiedmer, Fred Houzvicka, Bryce Huft and Alvin Wenz left the meeting.

11:00AM HEALTH DEPARTMENT TEMPORARY HELP DISCUSSION

Present: Julie Straub, Human Resource Manager; Kim Cuppy, Health Nurse

Kim Cuppy was unable to attend the meeting, therefore it was canceled and will be rescheduled.

11:00am- Julie Straub, Human Resource Manager, joined the meeting.

Julie joined the meeting to tell the Commission she has received four applications for the Fallon County Advisor position and recommends the Commission interview all four applicants. Julie said one of the applicants is a close friend of hers and because of this she will recuse herself from being on the interview panel. Julie said she will be present to facilitate the process and answer any questions from the interviewers. The Commission said they would like to interview all the candidates and would like the interviews set up for this Friday.

11:15pm- Julie Straub left the meeting.

11:30AM FALLON COUNTY TIMES MINUTES PUBLICATION DISCUSSION

Present: Darlene Hornung, Fallon County Times Publisher/Manager

Darlene Hornung asked the Commission if there was anything she could do to encourage them to continue to publish the Commission Minutes in the newspaper. Darlene said she could lower the font of the minutes so it reduces the “space” in the newspaper but it would only save $53 on average and it would make them difficult to read. Darlene gave the Commission examples of the 9 and 10 point font and they agreed, the 9 point font was hard to read. Darlene said the Commission is also saving a lot of money now that they are only publishing the Abbreviated Minutes but the readers still enjoy these. Darlene said the majority of the readers are age 50 years and up and are people who may not want to use the computer to read them online. Commissioner Baldwin asked if the minutes could be considered a “public announcement” and hence cost nothing and Darlene said she would like to do this but then her company would be responsible for absorbing the cost of publishing them which would be difficult. Darlene explained to the Commission how the advertising pays for the majority of the newspaper and dictates how many pages are in each edition and hence how much copy can be included. Darlene said she can put the full edition of the minutes in the digital edition of their newspaper at no charge. After some discussion the Commission agreed this was a good service to the public and decided to continue to publish the abbreviated minutes in the newspaper.

11:45AM PUBLIC COMMENT

No one appeared for public comment.

12:00PM FEBRUARY CLAIMS APPROVAL

The Commission reviewed and approved the February Mid-Month Claims in the amount of $265,211.65 and they are filed in the Clerk and Recorder’s Office.

1:45PM LAND LEASE DISCUSSION

Tom Sparks said he is not prepared to discuss his land lease with the Commission and will reschedule this meeting for a later date.

2:00PM ROAD DISCUSSION

Present: Bobby Wiedmer, Road Supervisor; Red Butte Grazing District Members: Tom Sparks, Shelly Dean, Barney Dean, Steve Bruski and Jeff Hadley.

Tom Sparks said the members of the Red Butte Grazing District drafted a resolution on January 19, 2016 regarding the Fallon County roads in their district and presented it to the Commission. The resolution requests the Commission see the roads are restored to “as safe as possible” conditions by removing excess crown in the center of the roads, establish solid shoulders capable of holding the vehicle traffic when meeting other vehicles, establish proper slopes on the curves with no center crown and allow no more than a 2% drop from center of road to the outside edge of the shoulder for each driving lane on straight, flat roadways, all other (grades and curves) to have less crown. Tom said the roads in their area are dangerous and he is concerned that someone could be seriously hurt or killed on them. Shelly Dean said she recently slid into the ditch north of Hadley’s when she tried to hug the right side of the road when going over the crest of the hill. Shelly said this was due to the narrowness of the road, the road having too soft of a shoulder and a lot of wash boards. Steve Bruski said Danny Buerkle had the same issue when cresting that hill but didn’t go in the ditch. Tom said the road is too narrow and the crown in the middle is too high, making it impossible for two hay trucks to pass each other safely. Jeff Hadley said the road north of his place is narrow and the ridge buildup on the sides can pull you over one way or another. Barney Dean and Shelly said they understand the position the Commission and Bobby are in but something needs to be done. Tom said this is the reason they drafted the resolution, rather than continuing to come in and complain they wanted to be specific about what needs to be done to fix the road.

The Commission and Bobby said the new blades will ensure the roads are bladed uniformly and Tom said the issue isn’t the blades, it’s the fact that the shoulders were pulled and the crown set too high.

Bobby said the road now is no narrower than it was when initially built. Bobby said what has happened over time is the road operators in the past would blade the road in such a way the gravel would be shoved to the sides of the road and overtime pile up on the edges of road, making it wider. Bobby said this was a big waste of tax payer money with all the gravel that was lost off the edges by doing this. Bobby said when they worked the roads they pulled that lost material up from the shoulders and built a crown to help the water drain off the road. Bobby said they can redo the road but wants everyone to understand the roads were never that wide to begin with and they were bringing them back to their initial state. Bobby said some districts did have the blading measurements wrong so the crown was higher than it was intended to be and those are being fixed. Tom said the hill crests shouldn’t have a crown as the water will naturally drain away from the hill. Tom said the roads all need solid shoulders, reduced crowns, good slopes for the curves and gave the Commission a Montana Department of Transportation diagram showing their slope measurements from the center of their roads to the sides. Bobby and Tom discussed how the County roads are measured and bladed. The Commission said they acknowledge the road is a problem and will address it in the spring when there is moisture and the ground has thawed. Shelly said the Willard Road between Scoria Butte and the highway is really narrow and needs to be widened as soon as possible. Tom suggested Bobby visit with landowners prior to doing anything on a long stretch of road to notify them of road activity and to talk to the landowners about the road as they may have valuable information since they use the road daily. Tom told the Commission the idea of having a “road construction” sign remain on the road for two years after the work is done is not a good idea and that the road should be drivable and safe within two weeks’ time of working on it.

2:30PM BAKER LAKE TRIBUTARY MEETING

Present: Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering; Lance Wedemeyer, City of Baker Public Works Director; Mary Grube, Planner Administrative Assistant; Clayton Hornung, City of Baker Mayor; Bobby Wiedmer, Road Supervisor; Robert Cole, US Army Corps of Engineers; Mat Rugg, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks

Shannon Hewson and all present came to discuss the Baker Lake Tributary (Channel) that goes through the City of Baker with the Commission. The current condition of the flow in the channel is not continuance and it causes the sediment to pile up and block it over time. When the channel is blocked it causes the land and homes around it to become flooded. The plan is to replace the four pipe culverts in the channel with concrete box culverts but the base fill of the channel has not been determined.

Robert Cole made several points to consider when drafting a plan to repair and improve the channel and they were:

 The Baker Lake Mitigation Plan that has been submitted to the EPA needs to coincide with the Baker Lake Tributary Plan. The plans need to work together and not cause one another to malfunction.

 Any plan they submit needs to include all options considered and why options were eliminated and others accepted. Impact areas such as financial and environmental should be included as well as limitations of time and manpower if they apply. The plan needs to convince Robert Cole that it is the best, practical alternative to improve and repair the channel.

 The US Army Corps of Engineer will not be able to act on anything that would affect the Baker Lake Mitigation as the EPA is the one in power on the activity in the Lake and the channel.

 The channel is considered a body of water and therefore will need all relative permits. A public notice will have to go out in regards to historical resources and endangered species that may be affected by the channel improvements and repairs.

 The material used will dictate how much wetland is lost and will directly affect the wetland mitigation required. A 1:1 wetland mitigation ratio will be required and it is possible the mitigation can coincide with the Baker Lake wetland mitigation.

 Fish Wildlife and Parks views the channel as a ditch or conveyance channel to collect storm water and debris when it rains rather than a stream, therefore the fishery value is very minimal.

 Once the application is completed with no adverse comments the permit can be given in 120 days.

 In the interim the channel can be cleaned out by doing a “clean excavation”. A clean excavation is one in which the debris is removed and deposited someplace that is not near a floodplain or wetland.

 Each state is given power over their water quality and that is why it differs from state to state with Montana being very advanced and rigid with their water quality.

Everyone present shared their thoughts on installing concrete as the base fill in the channel as it

is the method the County would like to pursue. The Commission said a concrete channel would help alleviate sediment depositing in the channel. Robert said he prefers riprap or stone to concrete as things can grow and habitat can develop whereas concrete has no habitat potential. The Commission said they have had difficulties with having riprap in the channel since it grows weeds quickly and seems to collect and “trap” debris as well. Clayton Hornung said it costs a lot of money to clean the channel out and with a concrete channel they could use their own equipment to clean it out. Robert said those things need to be considered and included in the plan if that is a reasoning they are not choosing one material over the other.

Mary Grube said floodplain regulations frown upon using concrete. Robert said the biggest concern with a concrete channel is the increased outflow and how it would affect Sandstone Creek. Shannon said they will determine outflow velocity and create a plan that will not cause any damage.

Other items discussed were: the staff changes in various Federal and State Entities and how these changes seem to create a whole new “mindset” and affects the rules that are enforced and how turn over and longevity in a position affects this and site visits US Army Corps of Engineers are allowed to make.

Robert recommended the Commission get the permit applications complete for the box culverts first and to begin working with the Baker Lake Mitigation engineer to ensure the tributary plan coincides with the Baker Lake plan.

3:30pm- Shannon Hewson, Robert Cole, Mat Rug, Clayton Hornung, Mary Grube, Bobby Wiedmer and Lance Wedemeyer left the meeting.

3:30PM COMMISSION WORK SESSION

RESOLUTION- The Commission reviewed and signed Budget Resolution 2016-5 transferring funds to accounts that have a shortfall and it is filed in the Clerk and Recorder’s Office.

EMPLOYMENT CLASSIFICATION- The Commission was notified of an employee’s time sheet that isn’t consistent with their employment classification. The employee was hired on an interim basis but is working a consistent number of hours each week. Due to time constraints the Commission will wait until next week to discuss this.

GENERAL JOURNAL ENTRY APPROVAL- The Commission reviewed and Commissioner Baldwin, as Chairman, signed the following Journal Entries: Journal #394-Correcting coding for various claims; Journal #395- Move various claim from Fair Fund Purchased Services that has no budget allocated to appropriate account with budget allocated; Journal #396-Move warrant from Plevna Fire account to Plevna Fire Capital Project Account; Journal #397- Close out funds with general fund cash; Journal #398- move SBM invoice from Health Insurance to Wellness Program.

PURCHASE REQUESTS- The Fair Board asked the Commission to approve five rooms of lodging for them to attend the April Spring Meeting in Medicine Hat, Canada and the Commission gave approval

BOARD AGENDAS/MINUTES- The Commission reviewed Board Agendas and Minutes.

REVENUES- The Commission reviewed revenues received during the week.

DEPARTMENT REPORTS/NOTICES- The Commission reviewed Department Reports, Newsletters and Notices.

EMAILS- The Commission reviewed emails sent to them from State agencies and other entities that required no discussion, action or decision.

4:00PM FAIR FOOD BOOTH REVIEW AND DISCUSSION

Present: Philip Huft, American Lutheran Church Council Member; Fred Houszvicka, American Lutheran Church Council Member; John Geving, American Lutheran Church Council Member; Rod Kilsdonk, Assembly of God Pastor; Joe Epely, Assembly of God Youth Pastor

Terry Sukut gave the revised food booths design to everyone to review. Terry said he gave the plans to Jon Brosz with Brosz Engineering to review in hopes he can identify the correct location for all water, sewer and power lines since the as-built drawings he has received thus far are all different. Everyone present discussed the interior of the design and some minor changes were made. Terry suggested the two entities share utilities and base what they pay on their ratio of use which can be determined by looking at past bills. Terry asked those present to give him a list of the equipment they will be keeping and putting in the new booths along with the dimensions, manufacturer information, model number and power requirements for each piece. Terry said he would like to receive this list the first part of next week. Terry and Darcy Wassman reviewed the contract in order to get it finalized.

5:40PM EVENING RECESS

Commissioner Ranum made the motion to recess for the evening. Commissioner Randash seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 19, 2016

10:00AM RECONVENE PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Deb Ranum, William L. Randash, Members

FALLON COUNTY COURTHOUSE

10:00AM CLOSED/COUNTY ADVISOR INTERVIEWS 

The Commission interviewed applicants for the County Advisor Position.

12:15PM NOON RECESS

Commissioner Randash made the motion to take a noon recess. Commissioner Ranum seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

2:00PM RECONVENE

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

2:00PM CLOSED/COUNTY ADVISOR INTERVIEWS

The Commission continued interviewing applicants for the County Advisor Position.

5:00PM ADJOURN

Commissioner Ranum made the motion to adjourn the meeting. Commissioner Randash seconded the motion. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

      



GAMES