Mercer County Commission
February 21, 2018
The meeting was called to order at 9:00 a.m. by Chairman Duane Scheurer with the meeting being videotaped. Present were Commissioners Wes Gunsch, Gary Murray, Wayne Entze, State’s Attorney Binder and Auditor Shana Brost. Commissioner Dwight Berger was absent. Others present during portions of the meeting were: Ashely Miller, Pam Pehl, Colette Schilling, Glenn and Susan Knutson, Eric Urness, Monte Erhardt, Jerry Obenauer, Carmen Reed, Ken Miller and Daniel Arens of BHG News.
Gunsch moved to approve the minutes from the February 7th meeting. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
Murray moved to approve the bills, excluding the Treasurer’s bills. Gunsch seconded. The following vouchers were approved for payment: AED Everywhere, $297.00; American Welding, $132.47; Ameripride Services, $63.87; AVI Systems, $5132.92; Dwight Berger, $151.75; Beulah Beacon, $252.00; Jessica Binder, $132.00; BCBS, $65550.12; Shana Brost, $19.97; CBM Management, $3240.35; Colonial Research, $254.17; Brenda Cook, $153.92; Corner Express, $217.80; D & E Supply, $662.25; Chuck Dahl, $82.50; Dick’s Vacuum Service, $3360.00; Direct Med, $64.10; Wayne Entze, $132.00; Farmers Union Service, $75608.00; Fireside Office, $152.38; Fladeland Mechanical, $2200.00; Wex Bank, $2219.14; Ryan Flemmer, $6.90; Weslie Gunsch, $107.25; Hazen Hardware Hank, $165.98; Interstate All Battery, $223.90; J & M Hardware, $12.99; Free Karges, $924.00; Dena Kemmet, $59.99; Language Line Services, $90.00; Lexis Nexis, $192.02; Line-X, $470.00; Lyle Signs, $1681.84; M & A Heating, $196.53: Menards, $599.87, Menards, $27.99; Midco, $259.54; Kurt Milbradt, $129.45; Minot Commission On Aging, $80.00; Gary Murray, $187.50; Napa, $797.96; ND Weed Control Association, $275.00; Nelson International, $166.37; Neuberger Oil, $3670.48; Northwest Tire, $319.56; Office Depot, $12.69; OK Automotive, $86.87; Olson Electric, $314.64; Pharmchem, $513.90; Pitney Bowes, $650.00; Quality Printing, $617.24; Raco Industries, $201.89; Ramada, $409.50; Roughrider Electric, 1533.66; Rud Propane, $908.74; Safariland, $100.00; Sakakawea Medical Center, $59.76; Duane Scheurer, $173.20; Bradley Seifert, $165.00; SBM, $685.74; Staples Credit, $985.96; The Hub, $89.07; Uniform Center, $17868.00; Christopher Waller, $52.50; WRT, $3602.68. All voted aye. Motion carried.
Entze moved to approve the Treasurer’s bills. Murray seconded. The following vouchers were approved for payment: Beulah Beacon, $36.00; WRT, $118.57. All voted aye. Motion carried.
Gunsch moved to nominate Chairman Scheurer to the Custer Health portfolio. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
The board reviewed the monthly financial statement. No further action was taken.
Gunsch moved to approve the 2017 budget amendments as follows: General Fund $303,273.38, expenditures exceeded appropriations; Special Vehicle Fund $46,913.75, expenditures exceeded appropriations; Sheriff Game & Fish Grant $175,734.34, expenditures exceeded appropriations; Youth Bureau $23,018.77, expenditures exceeded appropriations; State Highway $57,674.62, revenues exceeded estimates; Historical Society $1,883.97, revenues exceeded estimates; Commission on Aging $21,981.77, revenues exceeded estimates; County Fair Fund $180.27, revenues exceeded estimates; Health Insurance $231,234.59, expenditures exceeded appropriations; Cemetery $624.00, expenditures exceeded appropriations. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
Gunsch moved to reappoint Bruce Jaeger to another term on the Water Resource Board beginning immediately and ending on December 31, 2020. Entze seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
The board reviewed the NDSU Extension Highlights. No further action was taken.
Auditor Brost discussed purchasing a United States flag and North Dakota flag for the board room. Brost stated the total before shipping was $233.60 and the funds could be taken out of the miscellaneous miscellaneous account. Gunsch moved to approve the purchase of the flags, noting he would like to open up the board meetings with the Pledge of Allegiance. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
Monte Erhardt, Hazen City Auditor, and Jerry Obenauer, Mayor for City of Hazen, approached the board to discuss polling places. Erhardt stated the city would like to have a vote center and does not intend to run a separate election. State’s Attorney Binder stated the Board of Commissioners set the vote centers and the city has the authority to set its own polling place. Binder added the North Dakota Century Code (NDCC) does not give the city the authority to set vote centers. Obenauer stated people in the Hazen community would like to have a polling place in Hazen. Obenauer thanked Commissioner Gunsch for visiting with him about the topic, adding he understands budget constraints, but doesn’t think this is the right decision. Gunsch stated he wasn’t in favor of closing it either but when he heard the saving of $19,000, he felt it was the best decision. Gunsch added that vote-by-mail has increased over the year. Although, change is always hard, Gunsch is hoping this works. Scheurer stated this is something that can be overcome and if people try vote-by-mail, it is a great thing. Entze added he thinks vote-by-mail is great too because he can sit at home and take his time to vote. Gunsch noted he personally likes to go to the polls. Obenauer stated the city will make a plan to bus people back and forth, adding it is the generation that isn’t comfortable with vote-by-mail that he is concerned about. Obenauer thanked the board for listening. The board thanked Obenauer and Erhardt for coming in.
Gunsch moved to approve the Amended Joint Powers Agreement between Mercer and Oliver counties. Entze seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
Murray moved to approve the January Recorder’s fees in the amount of $8,688.40. Entze seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
Entze moved to approve the January Sheriff fees in the amount of $4,479.67. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
Murray moved to approve Liquor Licenses #418 & 419 issued to Hazen Golf Course for on sale beer/liquor sales and Sunday openings. Gunsch seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
The board gave their portfolio updates.
The board recessed at 9:43 AM.
The board reconvened at 9:45 AM.
Colette Schilling, Tax Director/Land Use Administrator, presented one (1) zoning case to the board.
Randy Byrum: Conditional Use #18-01-02 for two business signs in the E ½ SE ¼ Section 32 and S ½ N ½ Section 33 T145N R87W. The ordinance states that land would need to be zoned as commercial or industrial in order to place a business sign on that portion of land. Planning & Zoning board recommends a variance be granted as the property owners land is zoned agriculture, but currently used for commercial purposes pursuant of a temporary use permit. Gunsch moved to approve zoning case #18-01-02 for the duration of the temporary use permit. Murray seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.
The board reviewed the outstanding road accounts. No further action was taken.
Eric Urness, Interstate Engineering, stated he drove over County 12 today. Urness noted he had a meeting with Dakota Westmoreland last week and they are mining right up to the road now, so they want to get it done. Entze asked what the projection of acceptance would be. Urness stated within the next couple of weeks. They need a break in the weather so they can get the work done. Urness stated where the two roads meet, they put up a permanent gate until spring when they can finish the work. Scheurer stated he read communications about a roundabout going in 2019. Urness stated that is good news, and prior to the roundabout going in a blinking stop sign will be installed at the junction of HWY 49 and HWY 200.
There being no further business the meeting was adjourned at 10:04 AM. The next regular meeting is scheduled for March 7, 2018, at 9:00 AM in the board room of the Mercer County Government Center, Stanton, North Dakota.
Approved: Duane Scheurer, Chairman
Attest: Shana L. Brost, Auditor