The County Commissioners’ meeting was called to order on April 6, 2021, at 9:03 a.m. with Chairman Patrick H. Wade, Vice-Chairman John Midkiff, Commissioner Elaine Griffith, and County Clerk Becky L. Freeman present.
Chairman Wade led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Road & Bridge- Road and Bridge Foreman Fred Thomas met with the Commissioners and discussed road and bridge business.
Van Tassell Town Council member Dale Miller, Mayor Bill Matthews, and Town Clerk Louis Hammer, met with the Commissioners, Foreman Thomas and Treasurer Keri Thompson to discuss Van Tassell’s plans for use of the 1% money for road repairs in the Town of Van Tassell and S. Van Tassell Road.
Treasurer Thompson presented a sample spreadsheet showing estimates of how the 1% money might come in.
Foreman Thomas explained the costs involved to pave one mile of road and requirements to install a larger culvert than already exists in a live stream.
According to Mayor Matthews, purchasing a fire truck is their first priority and then updating drainage in town is their next goal.
Chairman Wade explained the County’s concerns about having to furnish funding to complete the project on S. Van Tassell Road Van Tassell’s portion of the 1% tax money runs out. Mayor Matthews said that the S. Van Tassell project will be years down the road.
Michelle Zimmerman met with the Commissioners and Foreman Thomas to inquire about improvements to Coffey Road. She said they are repairing an old house on that portion of Coffey Road that isn’t maintained, and wondered if there could be any road work done past Rebel and Shelley Coffey’s turnoff.
The Commissioners explained that they look at mail routes, school routes, road usage and number of people served when considering improving a road.
Mrs. Zimmerman said that the house would be occupied at sometime in the future.
Foreman Thomas stated that an estimate of cost per mile for gravel is approximately $35,000.00. He noted that the road would also need some auto gate work and culverts.
Chairman Wade said that it would be difficult for the County to do something on that road at this time.
Foreman Thomas then discussed a quote he received for transmission repairs to the CAT 140H blade. The estimate is $38,000,00. He also discussed lease payment options for a new blade.
Chairman Wade said there were two options- rebuild the transmission or take the scrap price. All Commissioners agreed to go ahead with the transmission rebuild.
Petition to Cross a County Road- Commissioner Griffith moved to approve Golden West Communication’s petition to cross portions of Cheyenne River Road and Old Hwy 85 to add/upgrade telecommunication services. Vice-Chairman Midkiff seconded, motion carried.
Elected Officials & Dept. Heads- Chairman Wade introduced Mr. Jim Mackey, who recently moved to Lusk and has IT experience. Mr. Mackey said he would like to possibly volunteer his time to assist Niobrara County with any IT needs. Chairman Wade asked him to come back to the next meeting for further discussion.
Sheriff Cary Gill discussed office operations. He submitted a report for the commissary account.
He said that Lieutenant Frye is going to Buffalo, WY to meet with someone to train him on the commissary account program.
He also mentioned that he has six people signed up to take CPR classes.
Emergency Management Coordinator James Santistevan discussed a weather safety class he will be attending. He also discussed the Homeland Security Grant he is submitting to get funding to purchase a back-up generator for the courthouse.
He said the County will need to try and sell the old generator which was removed from the fairgrounds during the auditorium upgrade. It isn’t large enough to power the courthouse.
He said there will be a Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) meeting on April 20, 2021, at 1:30 p.m.
Assessor Teri Stephens said that Notices of Value were mailed out.
She said she is advertising in the paper for a full or part time person for her office.
She noted that the air condition unit in the I T room it is still out. Long Technologies is trying to find information on the particular model to get replacement parts.
Clerk of Court Chrisanna Lund reported that she has criminal jury trial set for May 5th and 6th.
She said that Jerry Miller came up and repaired the roof.
4-H Educator Kellie Chichester said the extension office is making plans for the County Fair. She said they are looking for donors to help pay for ribbons. She also noted that 4-H Fridays are coming to a close.
The extension office will host Meet the Business on April 29, 2021, from 3:00-5:00 p.m. They are teaming up with multiple entities to showcase their businesses/offices.
Treasurer Keri Thompson said she had met with Lieutenant Jim Frye regarding the commissary account.
James Kruse met with the Commissioners to discuss the Charitable Relief Grant Rrogram and to get a timeline of when the grant became available. He asked how entities where selected and said he was disappointed that the two organaizations, FBLA and FCCA, who had been in the community for years, were overlooked.
Mr. Kruse advocated for FBLA & FCCA and suggested that in the future a central point of contact for schools and youth organizations be established so that no one is left out.
Martha Bridge, Center Coordinator/Teacher with Wyoming Child and Family Development met with the Commissioners to disscuss a funding request for FY 2022. She also gave an overview of the programs and screenings offered to children and presented the Commissioners with a canvass that some of the students had painted as a thank you for their continued support.
Monica Wilcox, with the Niobrara Emergency Medical Services (EMS), met with the Commissioners to discuss a needs assessment grant for the ambulance service for which EMS is applying. She said the average cost of the assessment, performed by SafeTech Solutions, is $60,000.00. The State will provide $55,000.00 with EMS matching $5,000.00. This assessment would provide suggestions to make the ambulance service sustainable. She asked the Commissioners if they would write a letter of support for EMS to move forward with this assessment and they agreed they would.
Wyoming Community Gas Contract- Commissioner Griffith moved to sign the 2021 Wyoming Choice Gas Program Supplier Delegation Agreement with Wyoming Community Gas for natural gas purchases for one year. Vice-Chairman Midkiff seconded, motion carried.
Commissioner Griffith moved to sign the 2021 Wyoming Choice Gas Program Index Price with Option to Fix with Wyoming Community Gas. Vice-Chairman Midkiff seconded, motion carried.
County Attorney- County Attorney Anne Wasserburger met with the Commissioners and discussed county business.
She discussed a conversation she had with a realtor regarding a lack of a county easement on a portion of Hat Creek Road.
This matter is going to court and the realtor asked if the Commissioners wanted to join in and condemn a portion of the road where there is no county easement. The Commisisoners stated they did not want to participate in the court action.
Lease and Rental Agreement- Commissioner Griffith moved to sign the Lease and Rental Agreement between Niobrara County (Lessor) and Lusk State Bank (Lessee). Vice-Chairman Midkiff seconded, motion carried. The purpose of this agreement is to lease a garage, owned by the Lessor, located at 115 E. 5th Street to the Lessee to store certain equipment, including a skid steer. This agreement shall be for a period of one year, beginning on January 1, 2021 and terminating on December 31, 2021 with a rental price of $900.00 per year.
24-Hour Malt Beverage Permit- Vice-Chairman Midkiff moved to approve a 24-Hour Malt Beverage Permit for Katie Kruse to give away malt beverages at a baby shower being held April 11, 2021 at the Niobrara County Fairgrounds. Commissioner Griffith seconded, motion carried.
Consent Agenda- Commissioner Griffith moved to approve the consent agenda. Vice- Chairman seconded, motion carried. Items on the consent agenda were the minutes of the March 16, 2021 meeting and receipts for March from the County Clerk for $4,715.32, from the Sheriff for $245.00, from the Clerk of Court for $1,246.50 and from Public Health for $308.70.
Payroll and the following vouchers were approved for payment:
Aflac Insurance- Supplemental insurance-$7651.60, Allbright’s True Value- Supplies, parts - $257.44, Alsco- Shop towels- $287.44, Ashley Clark- Tobacco Compliance Checks- $60.00 Barnes Law, LLC.- Court appointed attorney- $190.00, Benzel Pest Control- Pest control- $89.02, Black Hills Chemical & Janitorial- Supplies- $519.11, Black Hills Energy- Utilities- $1881.55, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Wyoming- Health insurance- $17,616.00 Boldon Diesel Service, LLC.- Equipment repairs- $1386.59, Boldon Welding & Repair, LLC.- Equipment repairs- $700.30,
C & H Tire & Trailer Repair, LLC.- Parts- $139.59, Canon Financial Services, Inc.- Copier service agreement- $292.87, Cathcart Fire & Safety, LLC. – Fire extinguisher inspection and replacement- $275.00, CenturyLink- Telephone- $1436.58, CenturyLink Business- Telephone- $85.45, CenturyLink- Vesta 911 maintenance agreement- $7933.62, Colby K. Sturgeon- Court appointed attorney- $334.75, Connecting Point Computer Centers- Copier service agreements- $646.90, Cory Wilcox- Deputy coroner- $100.00, Delta Dental of WY- Dental insurance- $1143.30, Dennis C. Meier- Office rent- $1000.00, Double A Properties, LLC.- Office rent- $1000.00, Erin Persche- Travel expense- $72.80, Falen Law Offices, LLC.- Natural resources plan update- $2750.00, Frank Parts Company- Parts- $423.72, Fusion Cloud Services, LLC.- Telephone- $849.07, G W Mechanical, Inc.- Fairgrounds auditorium upgrades- $1434.39, Gas Fire Services- Equipment repairs- $289.41, Geographic Innovations- Professional mapping, county map printing costs- $2010.00, Goshen County Court- Garnishment- 489.80, GreatAmerica Financial Services- Canon copier- $103.00, Great-West Trust Company- Deferred Comp,- $18210.00, Hiway Brake & Alignment- Vehicle repairs- $1567.17, Honey Bader Towing & Recovery, LLC.- Snow removal at Sheriff’s Office Sally Port- $255.00, Honnen Equipment- Parts- $976.36, J. G. Construction, LLC.- Fairgrounds auditorium upgrades- $2547.00, Jameson Cleaning & Maintenance, LLC.- March fairgrounds cleaning contract- $6800.00, Jub Jub, Inc.- I T expense- $125.00, J W Services- 2020 Road Rehab pay request #5- $53662.63, Kath Broadcasting- Publications- $440.00, Katie Krein- Prevention grant expenses- $182.54, Ken Brown- Court appointed attorney- $270.00, Lawson Products, Inc.- Parts- $647.30, Lexipol- Schools- $1180.00, Long Building Technologies, Inc.- Building/equipment maintenance- $5937.15, Lusk Herald- Publications- $1850.75, MasterCard- I T expense, supplies, new equipment, postage, travel expense, computer expense, dues- $3007.98, Midwest Connect - Supplies- $60.00, New Jersey Family Support Payment Center- Garnishment- $819.00, Niobrara County Assessor- County maps- $240.00, Niobrara County Circuit Court- Garnishments- $849.90, Niobrara County Clerk- Reimburse petty cash for postage- $36.94, Niobrara County Fair Board- Reimbursement for payment made to contractor for fairgrounds auditorium grant project oversight- $12500.00, Niobrara County Hospital District- 1% Option tax- $13501.30, Niobrara County Library- Library deferred comp.- $1725.00, Niobrara County Public Health- Prevention grant indirect costs- $234.07, Niobrara County Treasurer- Reimburse petty cash for postage- $7.00, Niobrara Electric Association- Radio tower- $49.40, Office of State Lands and Investments- Annual radio tower lease payment- $993.43, Plainsman Printing & Supply- Supplies- 495.52, Ricketts Plumbing- Maintenance- $120.00, Safety-Kleen- Supplies- 338.42, Thomson Reuters-West- Law library- $159.14, Torrington Office Supply- Supplies- $157.12, Town of Lusk- Utilities- $2673.28, Traci Bruegger- March courthouse, library, justice center cleaning contract- $4500.00, Tyler Technologies- Computer expense- $82.69, UW Extension- County share of 3rd Quarter 4-H educator salary- $6205.50, Valley Motor Supply- Parts- $167.04, Verizon Wireless- Computer & I T expense, cell phones- $280.17, Vision Service Plan- Vision insurance- $433.90, Visionary Broadband- I T expense- $530.34, WEBT- Life insurance- $211.50, Westco- Diesel- $6396.15, Whitaker Oil- Fuel- $2323.10, Wyoming Department of Workforce Services- Unemployment compensation & Quarterly worker’s comp payment- $13150.01, WY County Treasurer’s Assoc.- Dues- $200.00, WY Governor’s Office- Un-awarded Charitable Relief Funds- $19,173.96, WY Guardians Ad Litem Program- County share of GAL costs- $670.88, Wyoming Machinery Company- Parts, repairs- $5517.41- Wyoming Network, Inc.- Website hosting & design- $200.00, WY Peace Officers’ Assoc.- Dues $40.00, WY Sheriff’s Assoc.- Dues- $687.00, Wyoming Signs, LLC.- Parts- $754.78, Wyoming Women’s Center- Inmate meals- $1466.16, Xerox Corporation- Xerox copier service agreement- $130.07
Grand Total- $249188.45
There being no further business, the meeting adjourned.
NIOBRARA COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
Patrick Wade, Chairman
Becky L. Freeman, County Clerk
Public Notice No. 5618. Published in The Lusk Herald on April 28, 2021.