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County map goes to printer

Fri, Feb 27th, 2009
Posted in Government

At the February 24 meeting of the County Board a number of housekeeping items were on the agenda. After about a year the newly corrected Fillmore County map is being sent to the printers.

The map was rejected after being printed and reviewed with numerous errors and the total lack of recognition of the City of Rushford Village. Cloud Cartographics had included incorrect information about the location of golf courses, museums and more. The county had not requested that this kind of information even be included.

Commissioners and city officials have reviewed the information, checking for errors, and approved it for reprinting. Cloud Cartographics had agreed to print a corrected map for $3500. They have asked for an additional $450 to make changes.

Public Health

Public Health Director Sharon Serfling asked for and received approval for over night training trips. Serfling and another of her staff will go to a two day training for the new Statewide Health Improvement Program (SHIP). This is a two day program to train health officials on how to successfully apply for the grant. Serfling noted that SHIP was to be a 47 million dollar grant for over four years. Governor Pawlenty in his proposed budget suggests it be reduced to a 20 million dollar grant over four years. The only cost to the county will be one room and evening meal.

Serfling said that they have a received a $10,000 MRC grant. Brenda Pohlman is the coordinator for the MRC money. She applied for and received a travel scholarship from the National Association of County and City Health Administrators to attend a nationwide training conference in Dallas, Texas. All will be paid for except meals not served at the conference. The training trip was approved.

In December 2007, Fillmore and Houston counties together received a grant of $25,000 for well disinfection after the flood. Serfling said that rural well owners in the flood area were contacted by letter and also through the newspaper. Fillmore county still has $12,570 of their portion of the grant funds as there were only three well owners that qualified and none that applied. She has been notified that the funds can be used for anything dealing with well water.

The Fillmore County SWCD has made a proposal to use some of the funds to purchase water testing equipment and supplies. Joe Magee, SWCD, remarked that at present water tests are transported to Olmsted County and they are paid to run the samples. The equipment could test for e-coli and coliform bacteria. He suggested that they could also use it to target needed septic work or feedlot problems. Serfling added that her nurses could help test water for new babies in rural areas.

Magee said that they would save money by running the samples 'in house.' The board approved the transfer of funds to the SWCD to purchase the equipment.


Communications Grant

The board adopted a resolution to participate in the public safety interoperability communications grant. The county has an agreement with the state of Minnesota, the Southeast Minnesota Regional Radio Board and Olmsted County, which is the fiscal agent for the radio board and the 2007 Public Safety Interoperability Communications (PCIS) Grant. The grant requires that participating members pay matching funds of $10,804.44. The participation is necessary to get funding for equipment specific for the county.

Sheriff Daryl Jensen suggested that the funding would be about 75% of the cost of equipment. He was pleased that the grant doesn't require specific equipment. Fillmore County has not decided if it will use the state's 800 mhz system. He added that a regional study should be completed soon. Jensen stated that the information available is very complicated making it difficult to decide on which way to go for the future communication system.

Other Business In Brief

• An access permit was approved for Ronald and Patricia Scheevel in Carimona, Township. The couple is going to build a new home.

• Emergency Management Director Deborah Teske asked for and received permission for overnight training courses for two people for Citizen Emergency Response Team (CERT) trainer training. She said that it would be paid for with the CERT grant. The trainers will then train more citizens in Spring Valley, Chatfield, and Rushford.

• Cris Gastner, EDA, asked the board to approve the forgiving of recorded documents on the Country Grapevine loan. The EDA committee recommended the approval. With the failure of the Country Grapevine, the Canton State Bank has agreed to take the building back in lieu of a foreclosure. It is agreed if the building sells for more than the amount owed to the bank, that the extra funds would go to the EDA. The owners have tried to sell the building for the past year. Commissioner Randy Dahl added that they are current on their current agreement to pay back the EDA loan.

Gastner was pleased that the borrowers were willing to work with the EDA to repay their debt, "this is the situation that you hope for." The board approved the agreements as written.

• Auditor/Treasurer, Shirl Boelter discussed the direct payment of property tax. The option would not cost the county and would offer a convenience for those participating tax payers. She said that there was a trial run last year. People would have to fill out an application to authorize the direct payments and they would have to give notice to stop them. Commissioner Duane Bakke was concerned about problems when property is sold or split and there is a failure to notify. Commissioner Tom Kaase suggested that the person who uses the service assumes a responsibility to notify the treasurer's office of a change. The authorization for direct payment was approved.

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