The Cavalier County Commission had a busy morning on April 16 that was full of surprises.
By Melissa Anderson
The Commission met with Cavalier County Road Supervisor Terry Johnston and a representative of KLJ to discuss the upcoming bid opening at the North Dakota Department of Transportation for two Cavalier County road projects: graveling of County Road 55 and the striping project.
Commissioner Stanley Dick addressed his fellow commissioners with some comments he had received from area elevators concerning the county roads and the load limits. The elevators explained to Dick that they would like to see an increase of the speed limit to 40 miles per hour across the county. Their reasoning being that for those with a CDL, if they are stopped for going 15 mph over the speed limit it becomes a federal offense. Also, by having a universal speed limit on county roads there would be less confusion for drivers coming off of township roads. The commissioners discussed but ultimately decided that speed limits will be pushed no matter what the limit is set at and to err on the side of caution. The current speed limits will remain.
Long-time Cavalier County Extension agent Macine Lukach presented her department update to the commissioners. Lukach reviewed the status of legislation relating to the budget of the NDSU Extension service as well as what fellow Extension agent Anitha Chirumamilla has been focusing on. At the end of her department update, the 26-year veteran informed the Commission that she will be retiring in early May.
The Commission held a phone conference with HR Crystal Beggs to discuss the advertisement and proposed salary for the Cavalier County Public Health administrative assistant position. Beggs recommended having the salary at entry level rather than offering it at the level that Lynetta Johnson had after 30 years. The Commission and Cavalier County Auditor Lisa Gellner discussed the issue of county policy and how salaries should be determined when positions like this become available. The Commission approved the advertisement of the position with the policy of salaries to be reviewed by Beggs.
The commissioners reviewed the gravel budget for 2019. They looked at the percentages of the budget and how it is split amongst the county. While discussing the percentage costs, the commissioners also reviewed the county mileage that each area had to cover. Commissioner Greg Goodman also pointed out that areas further away from the gravel pits would need to have transportation costs added so that the total costs would be “apple to apple”. After extensive discussion the Commission decided to keep the budget as originally presented.
The commissioners met with the Cavalier County roadmen for updates on the department. The discussion came up concerning how soon the motor graders could be out on the roads as well as having a floating roadman available to help pick-up slack when the districts get behind. The Commission also discussed having the roadmen do inventory at their shops to determine if any unnecessary items could be sold.
In Other Business
• The Commission approved Chad Peterson for the North Dakota Insurance Reserve Fund.
• Cavalier County Recorder Vicki Kubat explained to the Commission a recent occurrence within NDRIN(North Dakota Recorder Information Network). Three counties in the western part of the state have left the organization as a result of lost revenue. The revenue loss is a result of the NDRIN system profiting from the copy of the records available on the network. Kubat explained that negotiations are currently being conducted to have 90 percent of profit from copies of records go to their county of origin rather than 100 percent of the profit going to NDRIN to encourage those counties to return to the organization.
• The Commission revisited the issue at Mt. Carmel Dam Recreation Area and the need to have campers, trailers, and other travel trailers licensed and tagged. The Commission is waiting for the notices to be put up at the area and will have law enforcement do a check later in the summer to enforce the century code.
• The commissioners opened bids for the work required on the recently purchased Cavalier County Social Services building. Bids were accepted contingent on the approval of the social services board.