The Cavalier County Commission met on Tuesday, February 18 following the President’s Day holiday. The meeting had a short agenda that lead to a lot of discussion and input from county employees.
The Commission discussed slope stability studies and the county’s need to conduct them for some road projects. Cavalier County Road Supervisor Terry Johnston and a representative of KLJ provided information and bids from firms that would be able to do the studies and provide the information to the county. After extensive discussion, one option the Commission agreed to proceed with was conducting the initial requirements for the design of the road.
Cavalier County Weed Officer Josh Short informed the Commission that the weed board rejected all bids for the Mahindra UTV. The board received 12 bids in total, but all fell short of the minimum the weed board felt should be gained from the sale. Short discussed the option of holding a public auction for the UTV which will be discussed at the next weed board meeting. This would require the auction to be held on the same day as a commission meeting as the Commission would need to approve or reject bids.
The commissioners held a conference call with Cavalier County HR Officer Crystal Beggs. They discussed the timekeeping of employees which has been an ongoing issue for county employees and department heads. Beggs notified the Commission that she will be resigning effective the date of the Commission meeting held on February 18. She explained her reasons for resigning as being the increased workload and unnecessary stress. Beggs will finish the more pressing HR issues such as the hiring of a zone director for social services among them. The commissioners commended Beggs for her services to the county and approved her resignation.
The Commission discussed, at length, the next steps that will need to be taken to replace Beggs. With the addition of the social services zone work, Cavalier County Recorder Vicki Kubat put forward the possibility of having a full-time HR person for Cavalier County. After extensive discussion, Commissioner Nick Moser and Commissioner Austin Lafrenz both expressed that a full-time person would be better. The commissioners will revisit the issue at a later meeting.
In Other Business
• The Commission revisited the issue of the Forestry Stewardship Program and its future in the county. Commissioner Stanley Dick provided more information on the options available, one being to phase out the program and let the Forestry Service change the program to reimburse the landowners for taxes on the acres. The other is to increase the taxable value of the acres in the program. Dick informed his fellow commissioners that current District 10 Representative Dave Monson is willing to take a proposal to the legislature for changes to the Forestry Stewardship Program.
• The tabled issue from the previous meeting regarding the meeting for the Senator Young Dam was revisited. Commissioner Greg Goodman presented a letter of reply to the correspondence received. The reply and sending representatives was approved.
• The commissioners received correspondence from the state regarding the contract for the clerk of courts office and the court service. The Commission approved the contract.
• The Commission changed the meeting dates for March. The new meeting dates will be March 10 at 8:30 a.m. and March 24 at 1 p.m.