Viewing of digital documents, plans, photos, videos and more should get easier for those attending the Wadena County Commission meetings in the near future following the approval to purchase two 70-inch monitors for the board room.

There is currently one 60-inch monitor used to display agenda items in the room, but there has been regular conversations about adding monitors in order to allow everyone in the room to view the subject matter without the use of paper copies.

The options before commissioners was to do nothing, add one screen or add two screens. The cost was $5,893.01 for the two monitor system or $2,238.77 for one monitor system.

The board approved not to exceed $6,000 with funds coming from the MCIT Fund for the purchase of two monitors and installation.

Split position approved

A position apparently over 10 years in the making finally came together with the approval of the Wadena County Commissioners Monday, June 17.

Planning and Zoning administrator Deana Malone spoke on a position change creating a split position called a parks and building maintenance technician.

This job description includes a split of 58% parks department and 42% building maintenance. This would be effective Nov. 1, 2019, so as not to affect the parks budget too much.

Prior to this arrangement, the county was paying the employee unemployment during the off season.

Commissioners only questioned the effect of this job change to the budget. Malone said in 2019, the change is rather budget neutral. In 2020, they will have to budget for the increase in cost, which Malone estimated at around $21,000 for building and maintenance and minor changes for the parks department. County attorney Kyra Ladd said part of this position addition is the possibility of lowering cleaning costs at the courthouse.

HR restructure

County commissioners approved a change to the structure of the human resources department, including a change from two supervisor positions in a department of three people. With the hiring of a specialist, there will be two people in the department with both reporting to County Coordinator Ryan Odden.

The HR department has been structured with three full-time equivalent employees in the past-a human resource director, human resources specialist and payroll and benefits coordinator. The director supervised the specialist who supervised the payroll and benefits coordinator. With the decision of not replacing the director and the resignation of the current specialist, the personnel committee proposed changing the specialist to non-supervisory and both positions report directly to the county coordinator. County auditor/treasurer Heather Olson noted that the two employees are already reporting to Odden since the departure of the HR director.

Odden said that the department was small enough that it's not a major addition for him to handle the two time cards instead of one.

In other actions, the board:

• Approved filling the part-time highway maintenance position with an intern.

• Commissioner Jim Kangas brought up his concerns of the roles and responsibilities of the liaisons, a conversation that he brought up about four months ago, he said. Commissioner Jim Hofer offered an update saying that the topic has been in discussions and he expects to bring the topic to a July meeting for board action.