Langdon City Commission discusses the Vanguard software

The Langdon City Commission held their last regular meeting of January on the 25th. 


Posted on 1/30/16

By Melissa Anderson

The meeting started with discussion of the Vanguard software with Langdon City Assessor Jerry Ratzlaff. Ratzlaff explained that he attended the last Cavalier County Commission meeting to discern why the Vanguard software was not in place yet for his use. Ratzlaff expressed his concern to the city commission that with the county not yet ready to begin using the software, the only program available for Ratzlaff’s use is the old Excel program that the last city assessor used. Ratzlaff told the city commission that since the county is not ready to enter into the contract for the Vanguard software for their own use, the county would be willing to enter it so long as the city alone paid the monthly expenses for the contract.

The city commissioners backed Ratzlaff and stated that they would be more than willing to get him whatever he needs in order to complete the assessment work. The city commission asked Ratzlaff if the county had any reasoning for not entering the contract.

Ratzlaff explained that the county is working on combining parcels prior to the parcel create in order to lower the overall cost for the reassessments of the county. Ratzlaff stated that this work would have little to no affect on the city. Ratzlaff also stated that with the reassessment scheduled to begin this fall and spring 2017 much of the work he would be doing now would essentially be erased once the Vanguard team of assessors comes in and reassesses the properties.

The city commission agreed that the contract signed with the county was 50/50 so even though the county might not be ready to utilize the software that should not restrict the city from doing so. Ratzlaff presented the city commission with a price estimate from Vanguard for just the modules he would need to complete the proposed work, which was almost $11,000. The city commission agreed that they would schedule to be on the agenda for the next county commission meeting to discuss the contract and moving forward on getting Vanguard for Ratzlaff.

The commission then received an update from Advanced Engineering and Environmental Services (AE2S) engineer Mark Lambrecht on the proposed street project. Lambrecht updated the commission on the progress that had been made in making the priority list of streets and possible funding sources the city could tap for the project. Lambrecht stated that the field work for the streets was completed last fall and that he had been working with Langdon City Commissioner Marty Tetrault and Langdon City Superintendent Rob Gilseth on creating the priority list from that data collected. Lambrecht stated that with the work Moore is doing on infrastructure repair that those streets could piggy back that project and that AE2S would focus more on those streets that did not have infrastructure under them.

Lambrecht also discussed the options that the commission has in regards to special assessments, stating that the project would be done in phases. The options are blanket assessments on the entire city which would be lower or focused assessments by district which would be higher.

In Other Business
• Langdon City Attorney Quentin Wenzel gave an update on the process of joining Northeast Regional Water District (NRWD) and creating the ordinance for Langdon residents to vote on at the special election in May. Wenzel is working with NRWD on a contract that is to be included in the ordinance which he will have sometime next week. Wenzel stated the first reading of the ordinance should take place at the February 8 city meeting.