November 5, 2013

The Benton County Board of Supervisors met in regular adjourned session with Supervisors Frese and Hertle present. The meeting was called to order at 9:00 a.m.

Moved by Hertle, seconded by Frese, to approve the minutes of October 29, 2013. Both members voting aye thereon. Motion carried.

Moved by Hertle, seconded by Frese, to set December 3, 2013 at 9:15 a.m., as the time and date for a public hearing on a land use change requested by Brian and Jessica Ashlock on a parcel described as Parcel A in the NW1/4 of the SE1/4 of Section 24-85-9. Both members voting aye thereon. Motion carried.

Moved by Hertle, seconded Frese, to amend the current contract between Benton County and Schneider to provide that the following forms be added to the Beacon website for Benton County: Homestead Tax Credit Application, Military Exemption Application, and Iowa Business Property Tax Credit Application. The forms will allow for the automatic population of relevant data in fields for selected parcels. The cost is $2500.00 to be paid solely by the assessor as the application process that is being enhanced is a duty of the assessor’s office. Both members voting aye thereon. Motion carried.

Moved by Hertle, seconded by Frese, to change the employment classification of the following persons from part-time to full-time:

Steven Fischer (corrections)

Chelsea Hessenius (communications and corrections)

Both positions are in the sheriff’s department and the change in classification is effective November 5, 2013. Both members voting aye thereon. Motion carried.

The board discussed the upcoming economic development meeting to be held on November 19, 2013 in Van Horne. Ann Jorgenson was present and discussed a booklet that was available from the extension service that contains “thinking points” that the cities might find beneficial. The board discussed the agenda with Jorgenson and the goals of the meeting. Moved by Hertle, seconded by Frese, to authorize the expenditure for twenty booklets from the extension service as well as various meeting supplies. Both members voting aye thereon. Motion carried.

Myron Parizek, Ann Jorgenson, and Randy Scheel met with the board regarding the hire of a manager for the Integrated Vegetation Roadside Management (IVRM) program. This issue was discussed last week but the board had asked that the impact on the general fund be determined prior to approving the position being filled. Parizek stated that the conservation department had determined that they would not utilize the services of the IVRM manager in the foreseeable future and therefore there would be no impact on the general fund during the current budget year or the next fiscal year. Parizek asked for authority to fill the position with a salary range of $35,000 to $45,000 as a starting salary. Parizek stated that the position could be started lower now with an increase on July 1, 2014. The position is not a bargaining unit position and will also perform the duties of the county weed commissioner. Supervisor Hertle stated that he would approve a salary of $40,000; however Jorgenson stated that it would take a larger salary to hire the desired applicant. Moved by Hertle, seconded by Frese, to authorize the engineer to fill the position of roadside manager to perform various duties, including but not limited to, weed commissioner duties, brush removal, and integrated vegetation roadside management. The salary is not to exceed $42,500 with the understanding that the salary may be increased upon successful completion of a probationary period. Both members voting aye thereon. Motion carried.

Moved by Hertle, seconded by Frese, to adopt Resolution #13-87, SERVICE AREA BUDGET AMENDMENT. Voting aye were Frese and Hertle. Nays none. Motion carried.

Carol Zander met with the board to discuss her general supplemental budget. Zander stated that her budget for substance abuse commitment costs is down to 37% remaining. Zander stated that she may have some funds available in her relief budget if necessary.

Carol Zander spoke to the board about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the requirement for non-insured persons to have insurance on January 1, 2014. Zander stated that the county’s policy for providing certain services requires that the individual carry health insurance if it is available to them. Zander questioned if the county should pay for services when someone fails to sign up for insurance coverage under the ACA. Zander stated that she had contacted the county attorney for a legal opinion but has not received a response as of this date.

Jennifer Fencl of East Central Iowa Council of Governments, County Engineer Myron Parizek and County Attorney David Thompson discussed the 28E Agreement for the sanitary landfill operations. Thompson reported that Fencl had sent a letter to the cities with a draft of the 28E Agreement and the by-laws. Thompson stated that there will be a learning curve for the new commissioners and suggested that training sessions be conducted. Fencl suggested that a session be held on how a modern landfill is built and operated and how it is funded. Fencl also suggested that Brian Harthun give a presentation on the possible waste management scenarios prepared by Foth Infrastructure & Environment with budget estimates and timelines. Fencl stated that the third session could be conducted to discuss the 28E transition and budget discussion. The board agreed that the training would be beneficial, but asked that it be limited to two sessions. The sessions are to be held on November 26, 2013 and December 3, 2013. The county attorney stated he would make arrangements for a site to hold the training.

Moved by Hertle, seconded by Frese, to approve the hire of Edward T. Watts as a collection paralegal in the county attorney’s office, at a salary of $32,000 annually, effective November 8, 2013. Both members voting aye thereon. Motion carried.

The county attorney spoke to the board about the collections program. The county attorney reported that he expects that the program will collect $125,000 in FY14 for Benton County with the addition of the additional employee. Thompson stated that he is not collecting on jail fees until the new person is in place; however he added that a resolution was not adopted formally by the board of supervisors until January 2013 and therefore collections aren’t possible for jail fees prior to that date. Thompson stated that Michael is doing a great job with collections and that another county may ask Benton County to collect on their behalf. Thompson stated that $32,427 was collected in FY13 and $8,819.13 so far in FY14 for victim restitution, which is generally going directly to the victims of crime in Benton County. Thompson stated that his long tern goal is to collect a couple of hundred thousand dollars a year with a two person office. Supervisor Hertle questioned why the county would try to impede the collections since the collection far exceeds the expense.

Thompson requested that his budget be amended to include the money that he has collected as well as some forfeiture funds that he is anticipating. Thompson stated that he would be willing to pay the cost of the budget publication and wanted the additional funds for spending on employee training, remodeling the office on the 1st floor at $ 6123.00, a school liaison, a new copy machine at $2400, and wiring for computers and telephones (no bill yet). The remodel for the basement was $9,604.00 to move juvenile probation to that office. Thompson requested spending authority for what his office is collecting in fines and forfeiture funds. Thompson also spoke about the requirement for paperless filing with the clerk of court. The requirement has been delayed to FY15 but upgrades to current computer equipment may be necessary in this fiscal year. Hertle stated that people don’t understand how much money the county attorney is bringing in. Thompson stated that he has always stated that if someone doesn’t understand how much his office has brought in then they should contact him. Auditor Jill Marlow recommended that the county wait to amend the budget until later in the year in the event other departments need amendments. Marlow stated that the county attorney can spend the current authority within his budget, but would need affirmation that the board will amend his budget when needed. Supervisor Hertle stated that he wanted to amend the county attorney’s budget immediately; however the county attorney agreed that if he was assured his budget would be amended that waiting would be more prudent. Moved by Hertle, seconded by Frese, to provide assurance that the board will amend the county attorney’s FY14 budget to include spending authority for the funds he has collected for his department through the fine collections program as well as forfeiture funds being collected. Said amendment is to occur at a later date within the current fiscal year. Both members voting aye thereon. Motion carried.

The auditor asked for direction from the board as to repairing the courthouse clock and budgeting for the expenditure. Supervisor Hertle had indicated previously that the clock should be repaired but stated he wanted to see if there was grant money available. Hertle stated that he would be attending the next meeting of the Historical Preservation Commission on December 7, 2013, to see if they could assist with fundraising or grant applications. County Attorney Thompson stated that he would assist with writing grant applications.

The auditor asked for direction from the board as to the replacement of windows in the courthouse. Window replacement was placed on hold after the 2008 flood due to uncertainty of funding for repairs; however all repairs have been completed and funds to replace the windows have been set aside over the past several years. The board directed the auditor to proceed with the project. The auditor stated that an engineering firm would need to be retained due to the estimated cost of the project and that a bid letting would be necessary as well.

Moved by Hertle, seconded by Frese, to adjourn. All members voting aye thereon. Motion carried.


Donald H. Frese, Chairman

ATTEST: _________________________________

Jill Marlow, Auditor

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