Grant County Court minutes from April 10, 2019:

Pursuant to notice made to the newspaper of general circulation throughout Grant County, the radio station, county website, and e-mail distribution list, a regular meeting of the County Court was held at the County Courthouse in Canyon City, OR.

9:00 am -- Call to Order. Present were Commissioners Jim Hamsher and Sam Palmer, Administrative Assistant Laurie Wright, Katy Nelson, Frances Preston, John Morris, Reporter Rick Hanners, Dave Traylor, Ron Ballard, Rick Page, Beth Simonsen, Judy Kerr, Gary Jacobson, Marlene Greer, Allison Field, Dan Becker, Billie Jo George, and Pastor Levi Manitsas. A Pledge of Allegiance was given to the United States Flag. The invocation was given by Pastor Manitsas. Judge Myers was absent on medical leave.

CLAIMS. The court had reviewed and approved claims and extension district warrants #121-131.

HAND CHECK. On April 3, 2019 the court approved a hand check to pay start-up fees for e-permitting for the Planning Department.

AGENDA. Commissioner Hamsher requested removal of Item F to review the Eastern Oregon Counties Association dues because it is still unknown what this cost will be. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to accept the agenda as amended.

ANNOUNCEMENTS. Commissioner Palmer announced on March 27th he met with Kimberly Lindsay from Community Counseling Solutions (CCS) and Health Department Manager Jessica Winegar regarding the Public Health Administrator position. Later on the 27th he participated in a telephone conference with Senator Merkley. Palmer attended Representative Greg Walden’s Town Hall in Mt. Vernon on March 30th. On April 2nd Palmer participated in a meeting at the Airport regarding the location and budget issues of the new swimming pool being proposed in John Day. Palmer met with Tracy Blood at the Education Service District (ESD) office for an overview and update of the Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) program on April 3rd. Palmer went to a fundraiser on April 6th for the Lake Creek Youth Camp and also met with Greg Turlock from the US Forest Service. April 8th Palmer attended an emergency meeting for flooding issues and reported the contingency plan that was in place worked extremely well. Palmer participated in the IGC 911 Board meeting in Judge Myers place on April 8th. April 9th Palmer attended a flood briefing and then traveled with Undersheriff Mobley on patrol to check on residents who were being affected by the flooding. Palmer reported at the flood briefing this morning he was advised that things are looking much better. He thanked all the citizens who stepped in to offer assistance during the flooding.

Commissioner Hamsher said the last few days have been very busy. Hamsher thanked the public and all the agencies who stepped in to help. Palmer and Hamsher both agreed the public came together in a very positive manner during the emergency. The total damage to the bridges affected by the flooding won’t be known until the water recedes further. Hamsher said the preventative measures put in place a few years ago worked well to keep the water away from the High School. He again thanked all those who volunteered and assisted during the flooding emergency. Hamsher was contacted by Representative Lynn Findley yesterday to offer State assistance if needed. Hamsher said the court declared an emergency in order to allow for State assistance if necessary. He was also contacted by Senator Walden’s Aide and Senator Wyden’s Aide yesterday. Hamsher commended Incident Commander Dave Dobler and Emergency Management Coordinator Ted Williams for their good work during the emergency. Hamsher said Dan Becker provided him with some talking points during the telephone meeting Hamsher participated in with Senator Merkley’s office regarding local internet service. Hamsher thanked Becker for his assistance. He attended a training yesterday put on by City County Insurance Services (CIS) for employees. Hamsher reported on some additional calls he has received from other areas of the county about flood damage.

MINUTES. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to approve the March 27th minutes as amended. The date was incorrect for the next reading of the Planning Department Fee Ordinance, it should have been April 24th and not April 10th.

MARK WEBB. Citizen Mark Webb was not in attendance at 9:20 am. Commissioner Hamsher reported the questions Webb has are complex legal questions and will need to be reviewed by Legal Counsel. He also would like to schedule this conversation for an evening meeting so more citizens can attend and provide input. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer – to table this discussion to a future evening court date.

APRIL PROCLAMATION. Hamsher announced that April is Child Abuse Prevention Month in Grant County. The court signed a Proclamation on March 28th, 2018 designating every April as Child Abuse Prevention Month. Hamsher read to Proclamation to those in attendance. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer – to again proclaim April Child Abuse Prevention Month and print up a new Proclamation that reflects the current court members.

INTERGOVERNMENTAL AGREEMENT. The court reviewed the Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) between Grant County and Oregon State University (OSU) for OSU to provide extension related services in Grant County. Hamsher said after reviewing the agreement he has some questions he would like reviewed by Legal Counsel. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to table discussion of the IGA until it can be reviewed by Legal Counsel.

ROAD DEPARTMENT. The court reviewed two job descriptions that had been sent to the Local Government Personnel Institute (LGPI) for grade placement.

Road Office Manager: LGPI placed this position at a Grade 7. It was formerly at a Grade 6. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to adopt the revised description and placement with the wage increase effective for the July pay period.

Safety & Risk Manager: LGPI reviewed the revised job description and it remained at a Grade 6. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to adopt the revised job description.

FAIRGROUNDS. The court reviewed the revised job description for the Fairgrounds Maintenance and Office Support and the RV Park Maintenance and Office Support. The description was sent to LGPI for grade placement and came back as a 5. It was formerly a 4. MSP: -- to adopt the revised job descriptions and placement with the wage increase effective for the July pay period.

SURVEYOR. Surveyor Mike Springer had sent a Land Partition Plat for the court to approve. Springer provided a narrative since he was unavailable to attend court today. Springer explained the court is usually not required to sign a Land Partition Plat, but since the City of Seneca is dedicating a street to the public, ORS 92.100(F)(A)(i) requires court approval and signatures. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to approve the Land Partition Plat and circulate for signatures.

RESOLUTION 19-10. The court reviewed budget Resolution 19-10 which allows for receipt of a State Homeland Security grant to Emergency Management in the amount of $5,815. Hamsher read Resolution 19-10 to those in attendance. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to approve Resolution 19-10 and circulate for signatures.

9:27 am Mark Webb entered.

FAIR CONTRACT. The court reviewed the contract with Parmalee to be the headliner act for this year’s fair. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to approve the contract with Parmalee and circulate for signature.

COMMITTEE VOLUNTEERS. Volunteer applications were received for the following committees:

Extension & 4-H Service District Advisory Council: One application to volunteer was received from Lance Zweygardt. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to appoint Lance Zweygardt to the Extension & 4-H Service District Advisory Council with a term to expire December 31, 2021.

Senior Citizens Advisory Council: One application to volunteer was received from Steven Baldwin. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to appoint Steven Baldwin to the Senior Citizen Advisory Council with a term to expire on June 30, 2021.

Wolf Depredation Advisory Committee: One application to volunteer was received from Steven Baldwin for the Wolf Conservation/Coexistence representative position. Terms on this committee have no expiration date. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to appoint Steven Baldwin to the Wolf Depredation Advisory Committee as the Wolf Conservation/Coexistence Rep.

9:30 am The court took a short break. 9:33 am Haley Walker entered.

9:48 am The court returned to session. 9:50 am Julie Ellison entered.

RESOLUTION 19-13. The court reviewed Resolution 19-13 which authorizes Commissioner Hamsher to sign documents for Community Development Block Grants when Judge Myers in unavailable. Hamsher read Resolution 19-13 to those in attendance. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer -- to approve Resolution 19-13 and circulate for signatures.

PUBLIC COMMENT. Hamsher offered an opportunity for public comment and none was received.

US CENSUS BUREAU. Nick Brown from the United States Department of Commerce Census Bureau was unable to make it to court today because Highway 26 was closed due to flooding and he couldn’t make it through. Brown will reschedule for another court date.

9:50 am The court took a break until the next timed event.

During the break the flooding and emergency response was informally discussed.

11:15 am Katy Nelson entered. 11:20 am Beth Simonsen and Allison Field entered.

11:31 am Jim Carpenter entered. 11:32 am The court returned to session.

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT. Business Oregon had requested an opinion from County Counsel regarding whether there was a potential conflict between Beth Simonsen and the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) management. Simonsen was recently hired by Grant County Economic Development as the Community and Economic Development Specialist. Simonsen also provides bookkeeping services for the Hearth of Grant County who is the potential beneficiary of CDBG funds. County Counsel Jim Carpenter reported he did not find a conflict of interest in this matter as she has no discretion over the spending of, or access to, funds from the proposed CDBG grant. He further found that sufficient review of Simonsen’s work takes place in both capacities to safeguard all interested parties in the application and distribution of CDBG funds. Carpenter drafted a letter to Business Oregon which he read out loud to the court members and those in attendance. The letter has been sent to Business Oregon. Hamsher and Palmer both indicated they have no issue with Simonsen working in both positions. MSP: Hamsher/Palmer – to approve Simonsen working in both capacities.

MSP: Hamsher/Palmer – to adjourn the meeting. 11:40 am Adjourned.

Respectfully Submitted,

Laurie Wright

Administrative Assistant

**** Please note the court minutes are a summary of the court proceedings. An audio recording of each court session is available, after approval of the minutes, by contacting Laurie Wright at 541-575-0059 or ****


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