Friday, June 14, 2024


Tuesday, March 28, 2023. Lake County Board of Commissioners’ regularly sched­uled meeting was called to order at 2:00 p.m. by Board Chairperson Rich Sve. Chairperson Sve led the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance. Unless otherwise stated, all actions have been approved by unanimous yea vote. Lake County Board members present in the Lake County Service Center, Split Rock River Room (SRRR), 616 Third Avenue, Two Harbors, Minnesota: District 2 Commissioner Der­rick “Rick” L. Goutermont, District 3 Com­missioner Richard “Rick” C. Hogenson, District 4 Commissioner Jeremy M. Hurd, and District 5 Commissioner Rich Sve. Vacancy: First District. Board member absent: None. Others absent: Lake County Administrator Matthew Huddleston. Also present in the SRRR: County Auditor Linda Libal, Highway Engineer Jason DiPiazza, and Clerk of the Board Laurel D. Buchanan.

MOTION HURD, SECOND HOGENSON: 01 – Approval of the agenda, as amended. Absent: None

Board Chair Rich Sve opened the floor for public comments. Two individuals spoke during the public comment period. First, Gordy Anderson spoke about a request for Lake County to sponsor a grant applica­tion to the Two Harbors Area Fund for trail maintenance and equipment for the Voya­geur Snowmobile Club. Plans are to wid­en existing trails, clear existing trails and rights-of-way of brush and trees, establish a permanent Yukon Trail re-route for the 2023-2024 season, and purchase protec­tive equipment for groomers to prevent wear and tear to the tracks. Mr. Anderson clarified that the tracks have already been purchased and that the piece of equipment protects the groomer tracks giving more longevity to the investment.

MOTION GOUTERMONT, SECOND HO­GENSON: 02 – Approve Lake County’s sponsorship of a grant application to the Two Harbors Area Fund for trail mainte­nance and equipment for the Voyageur Snowmobile Club. Absent: None

The second individual to speak during the public comment period was Phil Arnold, to follow up on a request for Lake Coun­ty to transfer a parcel to the Two Harbors Housing and Redevelopment Authority (THHRA) for development of affordable housing. Mr. Arnold advised that the THHRA has been working with Lake Coun­ty staff, the City of Two Harbors, Two Har­bors High School, and developers to plan the construction of affordable housing. The parcel was selected because its location close to utilities would require minimal site preparation. THHRA will be pursuing grant funding opportunities and accepting dona­tions. Mr. Arnold advised that the THHRA has requested help from the Lake County Housing and Redevelopment Authority (LCHRA), and that the LCHRA Board has approved assisting the THHRA with survey, slab, and site preparation work. County Board members have reviewed and discussed the THHRA’s request at previous County Board meetings.

MOTION HURD, SECOND GOUTER­MONT: 03 – Approve resolution for Two Harbors Housing and Redevelopment Au­thority (THHRA), directing the Lake County Land Commissioner to sell the parcel 23- 7644-16000 to the THHRA for the sum of one dollar ($1) to incentivize the develop­ment of affordable housing. Absent: None

County Auditor Linda Libal provided an update for her department and advised regarding property tax statements and payments. Payments for property taxes may be made in person at the Lake Coun­ty Auditor’s Office in the courthouse, using the drop box located outside of the Law Enforcement Center, through the mail, or online.

Lake County Highway Engineer DiPiazza advised regarding spring load restrictions. These restrictions go into effect on March 29, 2023. Typically, these restrictions are in place for about eight (8) weeks and may be in place for a longer amount of time, depending on weather and roadbed conditions. Lake County utilizes load re­strictions to reduce damage to roadways caused by heavy loads at a time of year when highways and gravel roads are most vulnerable. Engineer DiPiazza advised that the county GIS has online parcel maps that show county highways and county roadways. These maps show which county-managed roads have seasonal road restrictions. Lake County posts road restrictions each spring. Engineer DiPiaz­za discussed preparation for the spring flood season. With the increased amount of snowfall this season, we anticipate that flooding may occur when the snow melts. Lake County Highway Department is preparing its signage for potential road closures.

Lake County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) Manager Tara Solem pro­vided an overview of the St. Louis River Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan (One Watershed One Plan (1W1P)), including an update on the formation of its Implementation Policy Committee. This 1W1P has been officially approved by the state Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) as of March 22, 2023. The next steps are to develop a policy committee for the implementation and available fund­ing. Ms. Solem provided a copy of the St. Louis River 1W1P planning area map and a map showing the Cloquet Headwaters. As the watershed is less than 10% in our County, we had an option of adopting the plan. Both entities, Lake SWCD and Lake County, adopted the plan. Previously there was a policy committee for the planning process but now it has transitioned to the implementation phase and re-grouping the members. Lake SWCD has decided to par­ticipate in the Implementation Policy Com­mittee with Beth Hippert being the Lake SWCD representative. Each entity (SWCD and County from each county in the water­shed) has an option to participate. Even if our SWCD is participating, it is not required for Lake County to participate.

Tara Solem advised there will be a Mem­orandum of Agreement (MOA) for the Im­plementation Policy Committee, and that participation is voluntary. South St. Louis SWCD is the administrator of the grant and is preparing the MOA. Carlton, South St. Louis, North St. Louis Counties and SWCDs, Lake SWCD, and Fond du Lac Band of the Lake Superior Chippewa will be signatories on the MOA. Lake County may choose to be included as a signatory on the MOA, may wait until the next round of funding, or may wait to decide. Ms. Solem advised that the MOA can be joined and signed at any time. The Fiscal Year 2022 / 2023 (FY22/23) workplan has been developed, and the FY24/25 work plan will be developed in the summer / fall of 2023. Cloquet Headwaters was selected as a Tier 1 priority area. Some of the resource topics include recreational areas, stream and lake protection and restoration, and forest health and management. County Board members discussed the value of having a seat at the table. Ms. Solem will communicate and coordinate with Lake County Environmental Services Director Christine McCarthy regarding next steps.

MOTION HOGENSON, SECOND HURD: 04 – Approve Consent Agenda as pre­sented:

1. Approve Board of Commissioners’ regular meeting minutes of March 14, 2023.

2. Approve Health and Human Ser­vices claims payments in the fol­lowing amounts:

a. Administrative $ 80,076.01

b. Region III $ 23,430.21

c. Arrowhead Health Alliance Special Payments $ 5,800.35

3. Authorize payment to Wildlife Forever for invoice # 43885 in the amount of $15,000 for the purchase of advertising (gas station TV, bill­boards, indoor posters and April & August Lake & Co. Ads). These purchases will be funded through the Minnesota Counties Program Aid for Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Prevention Fund.

4. Authorize Lake County Auditor to notify the State of Minnesota, Department of Motor Vehicles to remove Lake County from all re­sponsibility for the Two Harbors Motor Vehicles / Deputy Registrar.

5. Approve the request from the Lake County Historical Society for the distribution of the first half of the county allocation to take place an­nually in the month of March. This change is effective on March 28, 2023, and for all future yearly allo­cations, and is a special arrange­ment between the Lake County Historical Society and the County of Lake.

6. Authorize Highway Engineer to sign the Special Event Permit for Grandma’s Marathon scheduled for June 17, 2023 and located on Scenic Highway 61.

7. Authorize Highway Department payment to Nuss Truck & Equip­ment for repair of plow truck 4101, a 2010 Mack, at a cost not to ex­ceed $10,000.00.

8. Authorize Land Commissioner to sign “Recreational Trail License” by and between Franconia Minerals (US) LLC, and Lake County Minne­sota, sponsor for Trail Prospectors Alliance.

9. Approve the Lake County Policy on acceptance of payments by credit card and other electronic methods and authorize addition of Appendix N to the Lake County Accounting and Policy Procedures Manual for the same.

10. Adopt resolution authorizing Lake County to make application to and accept funds from Legislative-Cit­izen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR) for a grant for the Split Rock Wilds (SRW) Beaver Bay Expansion project.

11. Adopt resolution authorizing the sale of parcel numbers 25-5276- 18160, 25-5276-18150, and 25-5276-18260 (unimproved non­conforming County-owned land for sale), authorizing the County Auditor to notify adjoining landown­ers of said sale, setting the terms of the sale, establishing the Starting Bid dollar amounts for each parcel (minimum sale price). The sale is set to take place on April 27, 2023, at 9:30 AM, in the Split Rock River Room of the Lake County Service Center, 616 Third Avenue, Two Harbors, Minnesota. Further re­solved, Lake County is authorized to issue a deed for the property to the highest bidder.

12. Adopt resolution for the 2022 Land Sale Terms of Sale Modification for the Knife River Basketball Court, extending the purchase deadline to December 31, 2023, for “Knife River 2 & 3” (parcel 25-5276-18140 and 25-5276-18130).

13. Authorize the County Board Chair to sign the 2021 Operation Stonegarden Grant Agreement (Grant Contract Agreement No. A-OPSG-2021-LAKESO-006 be­tween the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Homeland Security and Emergency Management Divi­sion (“State”) and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office (“Grantee”).

14. Authorize Jack Dietz to go to an out of state training for a United States Police Canine Association Narcotic Certification Event in Rice Lake, Wisconsin, on April 14 – 15, 2023.

15. Approve and authorize the Lake County Board Chair, acting as the Fiscal Agent of the Arrowhead Be­havioral Health Initiative (Region III AMHI), to sign the Minnesota De­partment of Human Services (DHS) County Grant Contract #GK304 (SWIFT Grant #GRK_225040) for the period of January 1, 2023, through March 31, 2024, for Med­icaid Home and Community-Based Services during the COVID-19 emergency. Further authorize the Board Chair to sign any subse­quent amendments or grant award letters through the term of this grant.

16. Authorize payment to Anoka Coun­ty for the Medical Examiner’s in­voice dated March 3, 2023, in the amount of $7,288.38.

17. Adopt findings by the Planning Commission for Interim Use Ap­plication I-23-005r, submitted by Brien and Shelley Getten for PID 25-5311-33250.

18. Adopt findings by the Planning Commission for Interim Use Ap­plication I-23-006r, submitted by Christy Illig for PID 27-5707-32196.

19. Adopt findings by the Planning Commission for Interim Use Ap­plication I-23-007r, submitted by Mitch and Julie Blomquist for PID: 29-5310-22400.

20. Approve a one-day temporary on-sale liquor permit for Whitetails Unlimited Inc for the date of April 22, 2023, at the Clair Nelson Cen­ter, 6866 Cramer Rd, Finland MN 55603. Absent: None

MOTION HOGENSON, SECOND HURD: 05 – Approve the retirement of Steven Ol­son, Jail Administrator/PSAP Supervisor, effective May 5, 2023. Absent: None

MOTION HURD, SECOND GOUTER­MONT: 06 – Approve the recruitment for one full-time Jail Administrator/PSAP Su­pervisor. Absent: None

MOTION GOUTERMONT, SECOND HURD: 07 – Approve and authorize the Chair to sign the 2023-2025 Labor Agree­ment between Lake County and AFSCME Council 65 covering Highway Department employees. Absent: None

MOTION HURD, SECOND GOUTERMONT: 08 – Approve and authorize the Chair to sign the 2023-2025 Labor Agreement between Lake County and Law Enforcement Labor Services, Inc. (LELS) covering Sheriff’s De­partment employees. Absent: None

MOTION HOGENSON, SECOND HURD: 09 – Lift from the table a proposed reso­lution for a bid award that was pending bid results and recommendation from Land Commissioner. Absent: None

MOTION HOGENSON, SECOND GOUTERMONT: 10 – Award bid for Birch River Bridge to Wheeler Lumber LLC for $160,150 to be used on Prospectors ATV bridge project. Absent: None

MOTION HURD, SECOND GOUTER­MONT: 011 – Authorize the Board Chair to sign a letter of support for Knife River Heritage and Cultural Center (KRHCC) for its application for grant funding for the LaBounty Family Funds. Absent: None

MOTION HURD, SECOND HOGENSON: 12 – Adjourn Board meeting of the Lake County Board of Commissioners at 2:54 PM. Absent: None

The Lake County Board of Commissioners will convene for the following meetings in the Lake County Service Center, Split Rock River Room, 616 Third Avenue, Two Harbors, Minnesota:

– Agenda meeting at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 4, 2023

– Regular meeting at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 11, 2023


Laurel D. Buchanan Clerk of the Board
Rich Sve, Board Chairperson
Lake County Board of Commissioner

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