County Board Briefs. Feb. 18 meeting

The Mille Lacs County Board conducted the following business at its Feb. 18 meeting. This report was written by Joel Stottrup.

Purchase of patrol cars
The board authorized Sheriff Brent Lindgren to purchase three 2014 Impala patrol cars through the state bid system, for a total cost with tax and shipping of close to $62,076.
Mower purchase
The board approved Mille Lacs County Public Works Director Bruce Cochran’s request to purchase a boom mower from Diamond Mowers, Sioux Falls, S.D., for $38,149.
Computer equipment purchase
The board approved spending $63,336 to purchase 30 computer work stations, eight laptop computer works stations, three digital tablets with monitors from Dell Computers and 41 Microsoft Office standard licenses from SHI. It is an annual computer related purchase through the county’s capital improvement budget.
The board appointed former Mille Lacs County Commissioner Jack Edmonds, Princeton, to the county’s land use committee to represent the city of Princeton.
Rental housing rehab program
The board passed a resolution designating the Central Minnesota Housing Partnership as the administrator for implementing the rental rehabilitation deferred loan program in the county. The CMHP had been the administrator of it during the past two years of the pilot program and now the state has approved funding for operating the program two more years.
Solid waste hauler licenses
The board approved annual solid waste hauling licenses to E-Z Disposal, Allied Waste, J Vanderpoel Inc., Nitti’s Rolloff and ACE Solid Waste. Each hauler must pay a $75 license application fee and provide information on their services, service area and pricing. Once their application is approved, they must pay a $250 license fee.
Aerial photos
The board approved Land Services Director Michele McPherson’s request to spend $750 to pay ProWest to do conversion work in the county’s GIS mapping and train staff how to do it in the future so that state aerial photos for year 2013 can be easily downloaded by users.
Raffle permit
The board approved an exemption permit that will allow the Knights of Columbus to conduct a raffle on April 25 at the Onamia Veterans Club.
Five-year road, bridge priority plans
The board adopted a five-year road improvement plan for the county and also OK’d a bridge-replacement priority list for five years. From highest priority to lowest, the listed bridges are those over the Rum River at County Road 103, over Battle Brook at County State Aid Highway 7, over the Rum River at CSAH 11, over Prairie Brook at CSAH 5, over Tibbets Brook at CSAH 16, over the Rum River at CSAH 20, and at Mille Lacs Lake, city of Isle, Malone Island.
Advertise for mowing, hauling
The board authorized Public Works to advertise for bids for roadside mowing and gravel hauling.
The board, in separate action, delegated the authority to advertise for bids to the county engineer so that the board doesn’t have to repeat the authorization for each bid. The purpose is to move the process faster for meeting publication deadlines. The county engineer will still have to sign the bid ads and present them to the board.
Box culverts
The board authorized WSN & Associates to review a hydraulic analysis and prepare preliminary information on whether box culverts can be installed instead of a conventional bridge on County Road 103 over the Rum River. The location is in Bradbury Township south of Onamia.
The proposal is to install five box culverts, each 36 feet long. Public Works Director Cochran explained to the County Board that the idea of using box culverts instead of a regular bridge comes after receiving “excessively high bids” to put in a bridge there.
He also noted that the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is now allowing consideration of multi-barrel, precast concrete box culverts as an alternative to a bridge. Going the route of box culverts would reduce overall costs and construction time, provided design requirements can be met, Cochran said. WSN & Associates is to receive $3,000 for doing the analysis.
Cleaning service
The board approved a contract for all of 2014 for the Mille Lacs County Development Achievement Center program to provide custodial services to the county. The contract will be the same as in 2013 and has the county paying the DAC $10.08 per hour of client service. The Mille Lacs DAC is responsible for payment of the client wages, FICA and workers compensation.