The Cavalier County Commission had a short agenda for their first meeting in the month of March. With only four items of business, the Commission was able to thoroughly discuss each issue as well as have extensive open discussion regarding serious concerns.
by Melissa Anderson
It was brought to the attention of the Commission by Cavalier County Treasurer Cindy Stremick that there may be a tax scam using the Cavalier County tax statements. Stremick explained that she had received a few calls from concerned parties that the tax statements were directing payment for Cavalier County taxes to an address in Texas. Stremick was waiting for further information from those who notified her of this and stated that if anyone with land in Cavalier County had questions on their tax statement to call the treasurer’s office at 701-256-2549.
The Commission met first with Cavalier County Road Supervisor Terry Johnston. Johnston went over some updates regarding funding for upcoming projects as well as a brief discussion with the RDO representative on potential equipment purchases.
The Commission spoke with Cavalier County Sheriff Greg Fetsch regarding his applications for grant funding from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Fetsch explained that this year they have been a little more strict on what the funding can be used for. Fetsch will continue to review what is needed by the department and utilize the funds. Fetsch also discussed improving the security cameras in place at both the courthouse and the jail. Fetsch explained what was needed and why to the Commission and will continue with the project.
Cavalier County Veterans Services Officer Leon Hiltner met with the Commission to discuss his position with the county. Hiltner explained that he would like to retire from the position by October 2020. Hiltner explained that there are also some family medical circumstances that may pull him from his duties for periods of time.
While he is willing do his best to fulfill his duties, Hiltner felt it may be prudent for the county to find temporary office support for his office who may eventually be able to take over the full duties of the VSO. Hiltner explained the process of becoming a VSO which includes training and some accreditation. The commissioners were supportive of Hiltner and discussed how best to proceed with providing the staff needed.
Jill Denault, director of the Cavalier County Social Services, was present to give the commissioners updates on the department. Denault informed the Commission that beginning April 1, Susan Fetsch-Crockett will be the designated supervisor for five workers as part of the Child Protective Services(CPS) redesign. Fetsch-Crockett currently works four days a week but will need to work a full five days in this position as she is required to have daily contact with the five CPS agents.
Commissioner Stanley Dick raised concerns over the vast area that Fetsch-Crockett will be working, including out of the designated zone that Cavalier County is apart of. The area will include most of the northeast corner of the state. The counties will be Cavalier, Ramsey, Walsh, Towner, Pembina, and Towner. With so many counties, Dick was concerned there may not have enough funding to cover the out-of-zone duties.
Denault also updated the Commission on the progress of renovating the social services building. The next projects for the building include the roof and updating the heating system, possibly switching to natural gas. Denault also presented a lease agreement for a doctor who visits the site once a week to provide services.
In Other Business
• Some concern was raised over a misconception that the county was not in favor of updating the bridges in the county that are falling into disrepair and may be deemed unsafe to cross. The Commission is in favor of doing these projects in conjunction with the Cavalier County Water Board and the townships concerned.
• The commissioners will discuss the forestry program with the township officers at their meeting to be held on Tuesday, March 12.