***Commissioners did not meet in regular session the week of February
3, 2014, due to attending the annual
***Monday, February 10, 2014, Commissioners met in regular session with Chairman Dan Dinning, Commissioner LeAlan Pinkerton, Commissioner Walt Kirby, Clerk Glenda Poston, and Deputy Clerk Michelle Rohrwasser.
Blue Sky Broadcasting Reporter Mike Brown joined the meeting.
Commissioners gave the Opening Invocation and said the Pledge of Allegiance.
Commissioner Kirby moved to ratify the signing of the Worley Appeal Hearing decision. Commissioner Pinkerton second. Motion passed unanimously.
9:00 a.m., Road and Bridge
Superintendent Jeff Gutshall joined the meeting to give the departmental
report. Mr. Gutshall did not provide a written report. Mr. Gutshall said Road
and Bridge has been working on
Mr. Gutshall informed Commissioners that Road and Bridge had applied for a frequency for a repeater through Scott Grimmett with Industrial Communications. This will help the calls get through better. Mr. Gutshall said switching to narrow band didn’t hurt Road and Bridge.
County resident Lynda Fioravanti joined the meeting.
Mr. Gutshall spoke of janitorial services for the Road and Bridge Office and he mentioned that he has an employee who wants to provide this service so he would rather keep it in-house. Commissioners said that would be fine. Mr. Gutshall said the job equates to one and one half hour to two hours per week. Mr. Gutshall said contracting for this position in the past didn’t work out so well because the work amounts to so little. Chairman Dinning said Commissioners would talk about it.
Chairman Dinning mentioned burning the refuse pile at the snowmobile park.
Mr. Gutshall left the meeting at 9:10 a.m.
Ms. Fioravanti stopped by Commissioners’ Office to bring up a couple topics of concern. Ms. Fioravanti mentioned mercury light bulbs in regards to their safe disposal. Soon only the mercury or light emitting diode (LED) lights will be sold and at this point the mercury lights are supposedly being disposed of in the landfill. Ms. Fioravanti said she’s heard that mercury could leach into ground water. These lights are something that should be handled differently and Ms. Fioravanti suggested possibly starting a campaign to promote double bagging the lights to be disposed of and putting them into a box. This is something to help protect the water table. Chairman Dinning said Commissioners would talk to the Solid Waste Superintendent about federal regulations for these lights.
Ms. Fioravanti said another
matter is the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) would like to lower the
water temperature in our waterways and she is concerned about that. Ms.
Fioravanti is concerned and doesn’t want private property rights infringed upon
such as with crops and animals. Ms. Fioravanti said she doesn’t have a problem with
putting in nice greenery, but it’s the private property rights she would like
the Commissioners to protect. Ms. Fioravanti showed Commissioners a list of all
the different creeks associated with this matter as it’s not just the Moyie and
Chairman Dinning said this all
started from a lawsuit regarding bull trout habitat. Chairman Dinning discussed
Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) with those present. TMDL was mandated throughout
the state and every stream was studied to determine if it met criteria for bull
trout as far as temperature pollutant. In the beginning DEQ was going to do
this. Geographically advisory groups were formed and Chairman Dinning said
there is a five county representation that he is a part of to also include Tribes,
Commissioners, etc. When this issue started out, the Kootenai Tribe challenged
DEQ and they set up this watershed group to keep the community involved, which
was the beginning of the Kootenai Valley Resource Initiative (KVRI). DEQ, by
monitoring, determined the
Ms. Fioravanti said she called Aaron
Calkins with Congressman Labrador’s Office as she thought DEQ was federal and
she was told TMDL is so easy, and there is infringement on private property,
but not in
Chairman Dinning explained the county’s vicious dog ordinance wasn’t good because it’s stricter than state law. This topic would need to be handled in the legislature. Ms. Fioravanti said she understood, but at the county level Commissioners could put their two cents in by March 3rd about waterways, how they’re treated and infringement on private property rights. If there is any kind of ordinance or resolution that could be passed that could buffer any gray area that the state may have on their books, that is what she is asking for. That is just an example of how others are handling this situation. Commissioner Pinkerton said this is part of what is going on with conservation easements that are purchased for private property throughout the country and that is what he despises about these easements. Chairman Dinning said the landowners are not being forced. Commissioner Pinkerton said it’s a matter of being mislead.
Ms. Fioravanti left the meeting at 9:34 a.m.
9:35 a.m., Courthouse Maintenance Jerry Kothe joined the meeting to provide a department report. Mr. Kothe provided a written report.
Mr. Kothe said he went to Memorial Hall to change light bulbs, restock toilet paper, moved snow, etc. Mr. Kothe said he fixed the stoppage in the Courthouse ladies room last Wednesday, and the sink in the janitor’s closet plugged up again so he plunged it and it’s doing okay. Mr. Kothe said he checked on the docks at the Deep Creek boat launch last Thursday and Friday he learned an explosive device was set off in that restroom. Mr. Kothe said he was told by the Sheriff’s Office staff that he could clean up the restroom now. Mr. Kothe said the gas pipe in the ambulance barn still needs to be changed, but he has not heard anything lately. If Boundary Volunteer Ambulance is holding meetings in the barn that may change the use of the room.
Mr. Kothe and Commissioners discussed the ability for someone to follow Mr. Kothe around on the job for a bit to see if he would like to apply for the position when Mr. Kothe retires in March. Commissioners debated the idea and said they felt that would be okay.
Mr. Kothe left the meeting at 9:45 a.m.
Deputy Clerk Nancy Ryals left the meeting at 9:45 a.m.
Commissioner Kirby moved to deny indigent application 2013-34 as per the Clerk’s recommendation. Commissioner Pinkerton second. Motion passed unanimously.
Deputy Clerk Ryals left the meeting at 9:50 a.m.
10:00 a.m., Boundary Volunteer Ambulance President Ken Baker joined the meeting.
Commissioner Kirby moved to recess as the Boundary County Board of Commissioners and convene as the Governing Board of the Boundary County Ambulance Service District. Commissioner Pinkerton second. Motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Kirby moved to approve the minutes of January 13 & 14, 2014. Commissioner Pinkerton second. Motion passed unanimously.
Clerk Poston stated that the county has made payment of $106,890.60 to Boundary Volunteer Ambulance as per the contract. The next payment is due August 1st and the final payment is due September 30th.
Mr. Baker informed Commissioners the garage bay door on the ambulance barn has been fixed, and he’ll be working on correcting the heating issue.
10:02 a.m., Commissioner Kirby moved to adjourn as the Governing Board of the Boundary County Ambulance Service District and reconvene as the Boundary County Board of Commissioners. Commissioner Pinkerton second. Motion passed unanimously.
Mike Klaus with Cabinet Mountains Water District joined the meeting at 10:02 a.m.
Mr. Klaus presented Commissioners with a current lease agreement along with prior comments from Commissioners and Attorney Hull. Mr. Klaus said he worked on the new easement with Attorney John Cafferty who has been hired by Attorney Jerry Mason. The new easement shows the area hoping to be incorporated in addition to the existing property. The 2.33 acres includes the existing easement. The difference is the new legal description in the new agreement and at the end of the first paragraph it says to maintain etc., reservoirs and wells, so it has been pluralized. Mr. Klaus said this ensures the county still has full rights to its own property. Chairman Dinning said if by chance this matter becomes obsolete and is abandoned for some time, the lease is automatically dissolved. It was suggested this statement be mentioned to Attorney Hull because if, for example, Cabinet Mountains Water District is absorbed by another district, there wouldn’t be someone to have the agreement released. This new lease also references the old instrument number, according to Mr. Klaus.
Commissioner Pinkerton moved to take $17,000 out of the Airport budget for grant match in order to pay the bank loan, upon notification to the Airport Board. Commissioner Kirby second. Motion passed unanimously.
Commissioners reviewed claims for payment. Fund totals are as follows:
Current Expense $49,506.22
Road & Bridge 19,934.63
District Court 18,697.60
Justice Fund 33,631.50
911 Funds 569.32
Hospital Operation 70,000.00
Indigent & Charity 19,355.34
Parks and Recreation 1,089.18
Solid Waste 30,435.87
Veterans Memorial 197.53
Grant, Airport 209,848.15
Grant, Fire Mitigation 11,730.00
Citizens are invited to inspect detailed records on file in the Courthouse (individual claims & Commissioners’ allowance & warrant register record 2013-2014).
Commissioner Pinkerton moved to approve the minutes of January 6 & 7, 2014. Commissioner Kirby second. Motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Pinkerton moved to approve the Property Tax Exemption Form for year 2014 for Sunset Home Assisted Living, parcel #RP62N01E111400A. Commissioner Kirby second. Motion passed unanimously.
Assessor Ryals said criteria has been met to approve Sunset Home Assisting Living’s exemption.
Treasurer Jenny Fessler joined the meeting at 10:40 a.m.
Chairman Dinning discussed a specific property owner who continually requests extensions.
Commissioner Pinkerton moved to grant an extension of time to pay year 2013 taxes for parcel MH60N01W244050A as follows: payment of $50.00 is due every two weeks until the tax is paid in full. Commissioner Kirby second. Motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Pinkerton moved to cancel taxes for year 2013 totaling $11.40 and penalty totaling $.11 for a total of $11.51 plus interest on parcel #MH61N03E04091CA as the mobile home was declared uninhabitable in year 2012, but left on the rolls in error for year 2013. Commissioner Kirby second. Motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Pinkerton moved to cancel taxes for year 2013 totaling $167.02 and late fees totaling $1.67 for a total of $168.69 for parcel #MH60N01W031501A due to hardship. Commissioner Kirby second. Motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Pinkerton moved to grant an extension of time to pay year 2013 taxes for parcel #MH62N02E089100A as follows: A minimum of half the amount of tax owing will be paid by the end of February 2014 and the balance of tax owing will be due by the end of March, 2014. Commissioner Kirby second. Motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Pinkerton moved to grant an extension of time to pay year 2013 taxes for parcel #MHM01300000300A as follows: payment of $100 is due by March 4, 2014 and the balance of tax owing is to be paid in full by April 4, 2014. Commissioner Kirby second. Motion passed unanimously.
Treasurer Fessler left the meeting.
Commissioner Pinkerton moved to approve the Fair Housing Proclamation for the month of April. Commissioner Kirby second. Motion passed unanimously.
Commissioners and Clerk Poston discussed various topics to include vacation time carry over, requests for carry over, W2’s for vehicle usage, etc. Commissioners mentioned possibly sending a letter to county offices with the notice that they are reviewing the use and reasonability of “home to work” county-owned vehicles and may request the offices to submit written justification for a county-owned vehicle’s use.
12:00 p.m., There being no further business, the meeting recessed until tomorrow at 9:30 a.m.
***Tuesday, February 11, 2014, Commissioners met in regular session with Chairman Dan Dinning, Commissioner LeAlan Pinkerton, Commissioner Walt Kirby, Clerk Glenda Poston, and Deputy Clerk Michelle Rohrwasser.
9:30 a.m., Idaho Department of
Juvenile Justice, District 1 Liaison Jim Crowley and Boundary County Chief
Probation Officer Stacy Brown joined the meeting. Mr. Crowley explained that
his visit is his once or twice per year visit to review juvenile justice
statistics with the counties, and the data being collected is for legislation.
There has been a slight drop in funding, but
Those present discussed Mr. Crowley’s report and discussed issues with drugs. It was said the Probation Department has quite a problem to deal with in regards to juveniles on probation as they would probably need some type of substance abuse treatment. Drugs can go hand in hand with liquor offenses. Clerk Poston questioned if alcohol is the gateway to drugs. It was said the state has seen younger kids using marijuana, alcohol, starting to skip school, and truancy. Chairman Dinning said when he was a kid if a juvenile got caught drinking they would be picked up and taken to the Sheriff’s Office. The juvenile wouldn’t have been arrested, but the Sheriff’s Office would contact the parents to have them pick their kids up and talk to them. Commissioners questioned if we are now too quick to pull the trigger for prosecuting. Those present discussed parental involvement in the past as compared to present time. Commissioner Pinkerton said alcohol is not the gateway as you see youth start out with drugs and then they seem to follow up with alcohol. Mr. Crowley said he’s heard that due to budget crunches for cities and the state, law enforcement says they used to handle these issues at the street level. Ms. Brown said the county has a great diversion program. Commissioner Pinkerton suggested mentoring the parents as a criminal record is hard to overcome.
Clerk Poston said she would like
to see how
Those present discussed substance
abuse treatment services. Mr. Crowley said the state has broken down 28 million
dollars into four pots, those being drug courts, the Department of Corrections,
courts, and another pot of money for the Department of Juvenile Corrections. Mr.
Crowley said he ended up with $4,300,000. The counties and state work in
partnership. Mr. Crowley, Commissioners and Clerk Poston reviewed allocations
for each county.
Those present discussed the
system works with the Affordable Care Act. Mr. Crowley said Ms. Brown chairs
the Juvenile Justice Council and receives this information at the same time he
does. Once Probation Department heads determine what they need to do next there
will probably be more complaints in regards to the Affordable Care Act.
When reviewing expenditures Clerk Poston questioned why certain districts are not charging for administrative costs and she mentioned one county has an over expenditure. Mr. Crowley said once a county has expended its budget, if other counties have not used all of their funding, that additional funding can be used by another county with permission. Mr. Crowley said counties can communicate and do this as a team when they need to and if they have cases that are expensive and need to share funds, that is what they have decided to do. Mr. Crowley said he doesn’t want to say it is or is not smart, but it was right at the time.
Chairman Dinning said
It was said this is a good example for District One to say it’s not going to charge for administrative costs. Ms. Brown said it was a choice to go that route in the beginning since it wasn’t known how it was going to go. If there was an allocation of $24,000 and two juveniles needed inpatient care, that would have wiped out the budget. Commissioner Kirby mentioned parents of the juveniles and said it’s his experience that parents should be prosecuted so to speak and also be held accountable.
Those present discussed potential issues involving public defenders.
The meeting with Mr. Crowley and Ms. Brown ended at 10:20 a.m.
10:20 a.m., Courthouse Custodian Jim Thompson met with Commissioners to discuss his letter written on December 13, 2013, requesting his vacation time of 192 hours remaining be carried forward into year 2014. Commissioners informed Mr. Thompson that he had the impression the request had been approved when it actually had not. Commissioners said they want to be fair as other employees have lost their excess vacation hours when those extra hours hadn’t been used in time. Mr. Thompson said he could take the time off if it cannot be carried forward. Commissioners said the excess hours had to have been used by the end of December as an employee cannot carry over more than 120 vacation hours. Mr. Thompson did not lose his vacation time, but there are other employees that did so there had been miscommunication. Commissioner Pinkerton explained that the request was signed off by Commissioners, but that is the process Commissioners have which is to acknowledge they have read the information before them. Commissioner Pinkerton said he noticed that it’s clear in the County’s Personnel Policy how if it comes to January 1st and an employee has an excess of 120 hours, that excess time is lost. With a retiring employee Commissioners want to look at the situation with more depth so that is why we’re here. Commissioner Pinkerton said Mr. Thompson had an extra 70 hours so there would be approximately two weeks to use it. Mr. Thompson said he didn’t use that time since he was so close to retiring so he thought he would see if he could be paid for it.
Those present discussed the time the request came in and the need to have the matter agendized. Commissioner Pinkerton said his worry is that it has to be fair to everyone, but he does realize Mr. Thompson is retiring.
Clerk Poston said Mr. Thompson had a doctor appointment yesterday so he did not come in, but her staff doesn’t normally take eight hours for a doctor’s appointment. In all fairness Mr. Thompson is not at the doctor’s appointment for eight hours, according to Clerk Poston. Mr. Thompson said in all fairness if he would have been given the help of an assistant that he has asked for, some of the dusting, etc., would’ve gotten done. Mr. Thompson said if there were things he couldn’t get to, it’s because it wasn’t in the budget.
Commissioner Pinkerton said there is 120 hours that Mr. Thompson can carry over and this is written in the Personnel Policy. Mr. Thompson said had he known that, he would’ve taken his time off. Commissioner Pinkerton informed Mr. Thompson that his request had been discussed by Commissioners, but the request had not been approved. Chairman Dinning asked about an estimated 44 hours and asked what that was worth. Clerk Poston said off the top of her head approximately $500 to $600. Mr. Thompson said to be fair to other employees he would just as soon take the loss than assume he is getting preferential treatment. Clerk Poston said this is different as Mr. Thompson did submit a request. Commissioners said they did not respond to Mr. Thompson’s request in a timely fashion that would allow Mr. Thompson to act. There is no correspondence back and forth. Mr. Thompson said in all fairness to others let’s just let it go. Commissioner Pinkerton said in the past there would have to have been something that would’ve prevented Mr. Thompson from taking that time off and in that case he could reconsider. It would’ve been something that would not have been in Mr. Thompson’s control so that time could’ve been carried over. Chairman Dinning said it’s fairly close to that scenario and Commissioners should’ve answered his request. Commissioner Pinkerton said in that case Commissioners are at fault.
Commissioner Kirby moved to approve Jim Thompson’s vacation hours to be carried over as Commissioners did not address Mr. Thompson’s request in a timely fashion. Commissioner Pinkerton second. Motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Pinkerton said Commissioners did not address the request in a timely fashion so Mr. Thompson cannot be held liable for that.
Mr. Thompson said the office manager at Road and Bridge mentioned his janitorial position would also be contracted out when he retires. Chairman Dinning said Road and Bridge had recommended to Commissioners that they do something different so Mr. Thompson should anticipate that.
The meeting with Mr. Thompson ended at 10:40 a.m.
County Civil Attorney Tevis Hull stopped by Commissioners’ Office to discuss the status of airport land acquisition matters, drafting an ordinance for use of the snowmobile park, and various other matters.
Commissioner Kirby moved to approve the minutes of January 20 & 21, 2014 and January 27 & 28, 2014. Commissioner Pinkerton second. Motion passed unanimously.
11:15 a.m., Assessor Dave Ryals and Treasurer Jenny Fessler joined the meeting to discuss the need for a new AS400 server.
Assessor Ryals provided
Commissioners with a couple quotes for a new AS400 server that would help the
county’s tax system, valuation of parcels and tax billing. This is a server that
is physically located in the Treasurer’s Office. Assessor Ryals said this is a revenue
source and the current model is old. If the current model, which was bought
used in year 2000, exceeds storage ability it will crash, and the backup is on
an old system that won’t convert to a new system, according to Assessor Ryals.
This new server comes with a backup and a new conversion. Assessor Ryals said
he has a quote from Computer Arts (CAI) and a quote from Miicor, which is out
Chairman Dinning reviewed the budget for data processing and said $20,000 is budgeted for computer software, capital office equipment has $2,000 and there is $16,000 in the budget for computer hardware. There is an estimated $38,000, but that is somewhat of a reserve as we don’t know what will happen with other equipment.
Assessor Ryals said the current
operating system is not supported and would be dead, otherwise the machine itself
is physically fine. Assessor Ryals mentioned storage problems when adding more
data to the existing server. Chairman Dinning said if the county chose to pay
for the new server outright using the lesser quote, interest would be approximately
$2,000 to $3,000. Clerk Poston said she would prefer to lease for the simple
fact of other issues that may come up in the Courthouse for data such as trying
to get the cabling updated in the Courthouse as we’re piggybacking on top of
piggybacking. Clerk Poston said she would add a line item in the budget specific
to the lease/purchase. Assessor Ryals said the Tax Commission is currently
working on a rewrite for their system, which will take away from the AS400 and
be geared towards a personal computer and if that happens, the AS400 will still
be supported by the Tax Commission. Assessor Ryals said the warranty provided
by Miicor provides 24/7 service and there is a technician located in
Assessor Ryals explained the difference between the two pieces of equipment and said both quotes include installation. The prices include the machine, attachments, installation and set up, and conversion of data. If any other assistance is needed such as a printer is not working, Assessor Ryals said he would have to work with the State Tax Commission. If an IT person is needed, Miicor has someone on site, they can try to fix the issue remotely through the internet, or if something happens and it can’t be fixed remotely, the president of the company will come up and fix it. If CAI had to do that, the county would be charged pc hours to fix it, according to Assessor Ryals.
Assessor Ryals explained the set up and estimate of time the equipment would arrive, which is possibly one month, but he feels Miicor would like to move faster.
Commissioner Kirby moved to approve the lease/purchase agreement with Miicorp for a new AS400 as outlined, pending the county attorney’s approval. Commissioner Pinkerton second. Motion passed unanimously.
Treasurer Fessler and Assessor Ryals left the meeting.
There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 11:50 a.m.
DAN R. DINNING, Chairman
GLENDA POSTON, Clerk
By: Michelle Rohrwasser, Deputy Clerk