June 15, 2024

County commissioners hear update on search for engineer

County officials took the oath of office during last Tuesday’s Grant County Commissioner meeting. The oath was issued by Judge Amy Doll (center). Officials taking the oath were, (from left) re-elected County Commissioner Doyle Sperr, Grant County Sheriff Jon Combs, County Recorder Holly Jo Wevley, re-elected County Commissioner Dwight Walvatne, County Treasurer Jamie Brendmoen and re-elected County Commissioner Bill LaValley.

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C.A. Ray

Grant County Herald

At last Tuesday’s Grant County Commissioners meeting, Human Resources Director Ashley Hokanson reported on the lack of progress in filling the County Highway Engineer position. The position opened with the resignation of Engineer Tracey Von Bargen at the beginning of January.

Hokanson said she has been in contact with several neighboring counties about sharing a Highway Engineer, at least for a while, but has not received any responses yet. She said she will reach out further to other counties.

She has also been in contact with the Minnesota Department of Transportation in Detroit Lakes, to see if they have an engineer they could spare. But MnDOT is also short of engineers so they could offer little help.

Hokanson has also placed an ad in local newspapers.

She also asked for permission for the Grant County Highway Department to contract for a heavy equipment operator for snow plow duty.

“We are down to two heavy equipment operators, but need help plowing snow.”

Office of Land Management

Greg Littlemon, Office of Land Management Director, presented the 2023 Permit Fee Schedule, with no changes from 2022. The permit fees will remain as: Site Permit – $100, Sewer Permit – $100, Grade and Fill Permit – $80, Conditional Use Permit – $300, Cell Tower Permit – $500, Wind Turbine Permit – Commercial ($1,000), Non-Commercial ($100), Solar Energy System Permit – Small ($100), Large ($1,000), Variance Request – $300, Plat – $500 plus $50 per lot, Rezone – $300, Re-inspection – $50, Appeal – $300, After-the-Fact – $500.

The 2023 permit fee schedule was accepted.

Credit Cards

The board approved a request from Sheriff Jon Combs to increase the limit of Chief Deputy Vipond’s credit card from $1,000 to $2000, and they approved issuing County Treasurer Jamie Brendmoen a credit card with a $1,000 limit.

Other business

The board set official meeting dates as the first and third Tuesday of each month, at 9 a.m. and named the Grant County Herald the official county newspaper for public notices and publishing bids.

The board approved paying dues to the following: The Association of Minnesota Counties – $7,392, Minnesota County Attorneys – $2,191, Minnesota Assessors Association – $200, Minnesota Deputy Registrars – $220.

The board assigned members to committees for the year and agreed to close down the Courthouse Security Committee.

As the last order of business a number of newly elected county officials were sworn in by Judge Amy Doll including: Reelected County Commissioners Doyle Sperr, Bill LaValley and Dwight Walvante, County Sheriff Jon Combs, County Recorder Holly Jo Wevley, and County Treasurer Jamie Brendmoen.

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