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Wadena commissioners move closer to decision on county coordinator position

Wadena Commissioners agreed at their Dec. 3 meeting to make a decision about the county coordinator position they have been discussing for years. The vote may be taken on Friday, Dec. 6, at a special board meeting.

Commissioners have developed a county coordinator job description based on a similar description received from Jackson County, and have talked with county officials in several other counties. The next step, according to County Attorney Kyra Ladd, is for commissioners to authorize a pay equity study for the proposed position. Ladd indicated that the new position cannot be advertised until the grade, step, and salary range are determined by the pay equity study.

The location of a county coordinator's office, the arrangements for clerical support for a county coordinator, and other matters have yet to be decided and could be discussed at the Dec. 6 meeting.

Commissioners also received a report from County Assessor Lee Brekke and the river frontage committee appointed by the board a few months ago. The committee members were Commissioners Rodney Bounds and Jim Hofer, community members Brian Roth and Larry Gulsvig, and county employees Deana Malone and Brekke.

The river frontage committee was asked to identify uniform downward adjustments of property value to be used in the assessment of water front properties in Wadena County Commissioners voted to approve the recommendations of the committee about the reductions in value to be applied to properties abutting a river, including landlocked parcels, parcels through which a river runs, parcels that are unbuildable due to their size, parcels located entirely within a federally identified floodplain, and parcels partially located in a federally identified flood plain.

Property owners with questions about the new valuations of their land should call the County Assessor's Office after they receive the new valuations in the mail.

Commissioners also voted to permit a three-month extension of the temporary hauler's license issued to City Sanitary Services, LLC, operated by Nicholas Davis, a garbage hauler that serves the Wadena-Deer Creek public schools and customers in northern Wadena County.

Davis failed to comply with at least one of the conditions set by the board when it issued the temporary license for the period Oct. 1 to Dec. 15: the condition that the company keep its account current at all times. Davis was given three more months to prove that he can comply with this condition. If his account becomes delinquent during the three-month period ending Mar. 15, his temporary license will be immediately suspended.

Davis said in his own defense, "I just ran into a little trouble...."

During a break in the county board meeting, county engineer Ryan Odden presented commissioners with samples of materials for replacement of window sills in the courthouse and carpeting in the county board room. Commissioners gave their opinions and decided on brown-toned carpet. They asked Odden to bring additional samples of window sill material to the next meeting.

In other business, the board:

• Approved a liquor license for River Trail Riders, in cooperation with R & J Horse Sales.

• Approved winter hours of operation for the Wadena County Transfer Station, effective Jan. 1, Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.