Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Human Services Board and County Board Meetings for March 20, 2012

Human Services Board Meeting
Human Services Board Chair Sue Hakes, along with Board Members Jan Hall, Jim Johnson, Jerry Lilja, Carla LaPointe, Bruce Martinson and Fritz Sobanja were all present at today's Human Services Monthly Board Meeting.

Committee Reports
Committee reports were given for Arrowhead Regional Corrections & Community Health Board (Jan Hall), Public Health & Human Services (Carla LaPointe & Jerry Lilja) and the Health Care Planning Committee (Bruce Martinson).  Feel free to contact these committee members for details.

Family Home Visiting Program Summary
Sue Futterer presented the Family Home Visiting Statistics for 2010-2011 as compiled by Public Health Nurse Amy Lacina.  (Lacina has recently resigned to accept another position.)  The Home Visiting Program is sponsored by a 3-year federal grant awarded to Arrowhead Health Alliance (AHA) in 2009.  Lacina's report shows that the number of postpartum women with babies has more than doubled from 2010 to 2011 increasing from 30 to 65.  AHA hopes to receive another grant to continue this necessary program in Cook County.

February Financial Report
Jan Parish provided the board with the Financial Report for February 2012.  She noted that expenditures and collections are nearly tallied for 2011; at this point it appears that approximately $60,000 of the fund balance will be used.  This increase from $20,000 was anticipated, most significantly due to Children's Services.

Director's Report
Sue Futterer reported that the Region 3 Redesign Income Maintenance Project is slightly behind scheduled, but moving forward with full implementation anticipated early in 2013.

Futterer also reported that several qualified applicants will be interviewed to fill the Public Health Nurse/RN Vacancy.

Futterer provided information regarding the percentage of Minnesotans without health insurance as presented in a MN Department of Health and University of MN School of Public Health article entitled, "Minnesota's Uninsured Rate Remains High".

Futterer provided Outcomes Measures data for Cook County's Wilderness Outpatient Treatment Program and how it compares statewide.

Board Actions
The Board voted to appoint Dr. Matt Webb of HDC and Lori Hommerding of Gregory A. Barnier & Associates to the PHHS Advisory Committee as provider representatives.

Jan Parish informed the Board of uncollectible accounts in the amount of $4805.86 and asked for approval to write them off the books.  All efforts have been exhausted to collect these funds.

Cook County Board Meeting
Board Chair Jan Hall, along with Commissioners Hakes, Johnson, Martinson and Sobanja were all present for today's Board Meeting.  Also in attendance were County Auditor-Treasurer Braidy Powers and Personnel Director Janet Simonen.

Public Comment
No member of the public opted to address the Board.

Ilena Berg, Water Plan Coordinator
The Board approved a motion to support a grant application for posting Aquatic Invasive Species signs on County owned boat landings.  Water Plan Coordinator Ilena Berg said the Soil and Water Conservation District's summer intern will be available to assist with installation of the signs; the Board agree to provide this labor and the sign posts as needed for McFarland, Saganaga, Chicago Bay on Superior, Devil Track, Clearwater and Leo Lakes.

Matt Geretschlaeger, EDA Director
As requested by the County Board, EDA Director Matt Geretschlaeger gave the EDA's first Quarterly Progress Report.  Geretschlaeger informed the Board that the EDA Board is in agreement that their top priority is selling Cedar Grove Business Park lots.  Included in the Quarterly Report was an update on the EDA Budget to date.

Commissioner Hakes, who serves on the HOME Investment Partnership Program with Nancy Grabko, was pleased to announce that the Cook County EDA was awarded $60,000 in new funding for owner-occupied rehabilitation to be used for eligible Cook County homeowners.  Hakes credited Grabko for her diligence and hard work in obtaining this funding. She also noted that the community wide support for this proposal contributed to success in obtaining this funding.  Contributors to  this effort include the EDA, Cook County, City of Grand Marais, PUC, CCLEP and promotion from WTIP and the Cook County News Herald.  Geretschlaeger also thanked Hakes for supporting Grabko and the EDA in this effort.

Scott Harrison came before the County Board as the sole applicant to serve on the Cook County/Grand Marais EDA Board.  After interviewing Harrison, the Board appointed him to a 6-year term on the EDA Board.

Dusty Nelms, County Recorder
The Board approved Dusty Nelms' request to enter into an agreement with Computer Software Associates, Inc. to work with MN County Information Systems in providing support for the Recorder's record system.  This request is also supported by IT Director Danna MacKenzie and the contract has been reviewed by Tim Scannell.

2012 Cook County Broadband Commission Work Plan
The Board approved the 2012 Work Plan for the Broadband Commission as presented by IT Director Danna MacKenzie.  The mission of this commission is "to enhance the economic and social vitality of Cook County through the strategic adoption of broadband technologies".  Eight long-term goals and objectives were approved in July 2011.

Courthouse Security
Building Maintenance Supervisor Brian Silence, County Attorney Tim Scannell and Sheriff Mark Falk came before the Board to request 1) authorization to award a contract for $29,000 to install bullet proof glass and security entrances to the County Attorney's office, 2)  $2200 to move a door in the courtroom holding room, and 3) approval to enter into a contract with Steve Swenson of CJES Consultants to perform a Security Assessment for the Courthouse.  All (3) requests were approved.

2012 Redistricting
Braidy Powers recommended the Board set the public hearing to consider plans for redistricting of county commissioner districts.  The Board agreed to set the hearing on April 10 at 10 AM with a second/final redistricting meeting on April 24 at 10 AM.  A copy of the preliminary plan for redistricting and supporting documention shall be available for public inspection in the office of the Auditor-Treasurer during regular office hours of 8:00 a to 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday.

Other Issues
The Board approved a Loan Policy for Volunteer Fire Departments.

The Board agreed to write a letter of support for Bruce Martinson to participate on the State Tourism Board.

Rob Barse of ORB Management gave the Board a general budget overview of the One Percent Projects to date, as well as notice that bids will be solicited for trade work on the Birch Grove Community Center project this month.

Arrowhead Regional Corrections will be conducting, free of charge, Office Safety training to all interested Cook County employees.  Two identical sessions will be offered on April 13 and April 20.

Meeting Minutes
Copies of these meeting minutes will be available on the Cook County website or by calling Janet Simonen at 387-3602 after they have been completed and approved.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Cook County Board Meeting March 13, 2012

Board Chair Jan Hall, along with Commissioners Hakes, Johnson, Martinson and Sobanja were all present for today's County Board Meeting.  It was wonderful to welcome Jim Johnson back after his absence!!  Also present were Auditor-Treasurer Braidy Powers and Personnel Director Janet Simonen.

Public Comment
No member of the public opted to address the County Board.

Highway Department
The County Board authorized David Betts, Highway Engineer, to advertise for sealed bids for (2) projects:  870.77 feet of CSAH 5 and 1.496 miles of CSAH 8.

Braidy Powers informed the Board that he has the necessary population information from the 2010 Census to propose changes to the districts in Cook County.  Powers will likely recommend 1-2 options for Board consideration.  Go to the Cook County Homepage for updates and information about the redistricting process.

Furniture Purchase for County Attorney's Office
The Board approved the purchase of a new computer desk for County Attorney Tim Scannell.

Cook County Community Center Board of Trustees
Bill Parish was unanimously approved for appointment to the Cook County Community Center Board of Trustees.

1% Project Updates
On Wednesday, March 14, from 8:30 to 10:30 am a meeting is scheduled between the ISD166 School Board, the Community Center Steering Committee, and the County Board to discuss the potential for attaching the proposed Community Center to ISD166.  This option has the potential to aid the School with some much needed repairs/improvements to the offices and classrooms on the west end, and the Old Gymnasium.  Close proximity to the School and outdoor recreation facilities also streamlines staffing requirements and enhances youth programming.

As a way to update the Board about the Arrowhead Electric Cooperative Broadband project, Hakes shared a copy of an article written by Joan Farnam in the March 2012 issue of North Shore Highway 61 publication, entitled "Broadband Construction Slowed".  

Labor Negotiations
Labor negotiations for the Highway Department Local 49 are complete.  Along with Personnel Director Janet Simonen, Board Chair Jan Hall and Commissioner Sue Hakes were on the negotiating team for the County.

Courthouse Birthday
Jim Johnson said the Cook County Historical Society has interest in celebrating the 100th birthday of the Cook County Courthouse.  The Board agreed enthusiastially to support this effort.

PUBLIC HEARING to consider changes to the Cook County Fee Schedule
A Public Hearing was held at 10:00 AM regarding proposed changes to the Cook County Fee Schedule.  In addition to some sight increases to some services provided in Public Health and Human Services, the following changes were also made:

Onsite Sewage System Compliance Inspection:
Current:  $300
Changed:  $300 first and $200 subsequent inspections

NEW Fee:  Grading and Filling Permit:  $75.00
NEW Fee:  Small Site Stormwater:  $75.00

A complete copy of the meeting minutes for March 13, 2012 may be requested by calling Janet Simonen at 387-3602 or by going to the Cook County Website at: