May 9, 2019
May 9, 2019
Commissioners Robert ‘Pits’ DeArmond, Scott Blain, and Bill Bullock, and Administrative Officer Angela Newell were present.
8:30 Pledge of Allegiance.
9:00 Dave Judd Met with Commissioners for the Fuel Bid opening. Two bids were received as follows (price is above the rack price): City Service: gasoline $0.078 and Diesel $0.063; Ray Judd Ford gasoline $0.109 and Diesel. $0.109. Commissioners would like verification that there is not an added premium for City Service Valcon payment monthly as that had been an issue previously when they were billing for Judd. Commissioner Blain also asked about dividends the County receives through Town and Country which handles the billing for Ray Judd. They would like to factor that into the overall price.
9:30 Contract Civil Attorney Jacque Papez, Contract Planner Forrest Mandeville, Jonathan Vasdekas Innogy/Sunrise Wind Holdings, Ken Clark PacificCorp, Richard Brown Wyo-Ben Inc, Joe Sylvester Wyo-Ben, and Mick Jones Montana Limestone met with Commissioners regarding the Mud Springs Wind Project Conditional Use Permit. Forrest reviewed the project memorandum and recommendation from the Planning Board. Forrest noted there will be an operations building which will require its own septic system. 9:40 County Attorney Alex Nixon joined the meeting. Forrest discussed the 39 turbines that do not met 1000’ setback requirements. Forrest noted 18 of them are adjacent to private lands although the majority have lease agreements with the project; the others are next to State land. Jacque asked about sale of the project to Pacific Corps; they are expecting the sale to close next week. Commissioner Blain asked if there would be any turbines on state lands; there has been correspondence with DRNC indicating they are interested in participating in the project. Ken noted they have a pretty tight timeline to start construction this summer, but will work with the State. There are still some questions about what size turbines will be used; they anticipate more smaller turbines similar to the original project layout approved in 2014. Ken noted the State Sage Grouse Committee has grandfathered in the 2014 project boundary; There may be adjustments to the layout to fit within this boundary. Ken noted the final layout will be presented before construction begins. No other comments. Commissioner Bullock moved to approve Muds Springs et al. Conditional User Perm Revision; Commissioner DeArmond seconded; motion carried. Ken asked about property tax abatements. Commissioners noted the previous approvals have expired; Commissioner Blain noted Pacific Corps would need to go through a public hearing process to have the tax abatement reapproved. Alex noted the County would like to see some funding commitment to ensure the application is not premature as past applications have been.
10:00 Jacque noted Dan McJunkin’s deposition in the Burgen case is Monday if any of the Commissioners would like to observe. Alex noted Shifferens has requested a change of plea to withdraw his guilty plea. Industrial Communications has submitted their discovery request on the Simulcast Radio System case. 10:10 Commissioner Bullock left the meeting to perform a site visit with the Conservation District for a rip rap project in his road district. Commissioners and attorneys discussed the wind impact fee; Alex noted previous agreements were tied to the LLCs and all agreements will need to be renegotiated with Pacific Corps.
10:30 Contract planner Forrest Mandeville met with Commissioners regarding the CTA Planning Services Contract renewal. Commissioner DeArmond moved to approve the renewal of the Planning Services Agreement with CTA; Commissioner Blain seconded; motion carried. Commissioners noted they are pleased with the service Forrest is providing.
Commissioner DeArmond moved to approve Commissioners’ Proceedings for April 15 and 18, 2019; Commissioner Blain seconded; motion carried.