At this weeks Yellow Medicine County Board meeting the board started by giving their commissioners reports. Commissioners discussed a labor management meeting where smoking rules and work attire were discussed, an AMC District 6 meeting, and a legislative update session that included State Senator Gary Dhams spoke at.

The commissioners also discussed a strategic planning commission meeting, the workforce shortage was the main topic that was discussed. Commissioners discussed a legislators town hall in Granite Falls that local representatives Chris Swedzinski and Gary Dhams attended, community corrections and security camera upgrades, parks maintenance, out of home placements (there have been zero in Yellow Medicine County for three months), sentence to serve, and County Administrator Angie Steinbach gave a brief administrators report.

The board discussed the Yellow Medicine County fairgrounds improvement project. There were multiple buildings that needed maintenance, the plan is to purchase materials and use sentence to serve as a way to make the repairs. The board was going to approve the quote for the repairs to be made but it was pointed out that they needed to have gotten more than one quote for a project to approve a quote.

The understanding was that because the project is under $5,000 they were able to approve the project with just the one quote, however they decided to get another quote to compare costs to the quote that was already received. The board changed their motion to approve the quotes for repairs, but only as long as two quotes are available and the project goes to the lowest bidder. To prevent issues in the future with purchases under $5,000 the board plans to review their purchasing policy.

Jen Johnson from Safe Avenues came to the board with a funding request. Safe Avenues provides advocacy, parenting time services, and emergency shelter for victims of domestic and sexual violence. The funding request was for $1,500, and they added that the cost of a person living in a shelter is $180 a day. Commissioner Ron Antony thought this number was too low for the work they do, “You guys do an amazing job, you are doing very important things and for me this number seems low.” Antony continued, “I would like to propose we give you $2,000 instead of the $1,500. I still don’t think it’s enough, but I would like to increase it to $2,000 even.”

The board agreed with Antony’s view, they asked some questions about the services provided specifically for Yellow Medicine County, and then asked about the services that are provided for other counties and how much those counties contribute. Most of the funding for Safe Avenues comes from federal and state dollars, along with various grants. The counties where Safe Avenues operates don’t usually contribute larger amounts to the organization. Safe Avenues served served more than 1392 people in 2018 throughout their different programs. Approximately 89 adults and 101 children stayed in a shelter facility in 2018.

County Engineer, Andy Sander, proposed the county award a contract to Duininck Inc. for the project on 8 and 19 pending State and Federal approval. The board approved the proposed bid. The board held a public hearing for the Highway Departments proposed five year plan. No citizens attended the public hearing but Sander went over a list of projects for the next five years and highlighted a few specific projects for the board. The board closed the public hearing and accepted the five year plan.

The board opened another public hearing on the highway department ADA plan. No citizens attended this hearing either and after a brief discussion the hearing was closed and the ADA plan was passed. County IT Coordinator, Dennis Pederson, talked to the board about installing hardware firewalls at the Canby, Porter, and Wood Lake highway shops. Pederson also proposed installing new Midco internet service in the Porter and Canby shops to resolve some connection issues. After some discussion on the need for high speed internet and cyber security the board approved both proposals.

In Other News:

•Tyler Knutson gave a Yellow Medicine Soil and Water Conservation District update

•The board discussed Oshkosh section 15 Diversion Ditch information

•The board approved a resolution declaring participation in the Performance

•Measurement Program and filing of the 2018 Performance Measurement Program reporting requirements

•The board approved a ResNexus parks camping reservation system

•The board approved the formation of a Technical Rescue Team Equipment (TRT) Ad Hoc Committee

•The Board discussed the old bath house property out at Memorial Park, their obligations to the property, possible deals they could make with the property, the potential for a boat launch, and clearing off the sidewalk that is currently covered with 10-12 inches of sand

•The board discussed the Clarkfield High School building