December 10, 2020
December 10, 2020
Commissioners Scott Blain and Bill Bullock, and Commissioners’ Secretary Barbara Krizek were present.
8:30 Pledge of Allegiance
Commissioners attended a meeting of the Detention Facility Citizen Advisory Committee last evening; minutes from their November 18th and December 2nd meeting were approved (attached). Discussion regarding projected construction and operations budgets as compared to other facilities in the State and country.
9:00 Commissioner-elect Scott Miller joined the meeting. Commissioner Bullock provided an update to two upcoming meetings next week: 1) Town of Bridger and Beartooth RC&D regarding the Coal Board grant to remodel to Senior Center, and 2) Clerk of Bridger regarding property for a vehicle impoundment lot. Town of Bridger is interested in co-locating a shooting range.
9:15 Administrative Officer Angela Newell joined the meeting.
Commissioner Bullock reported hearing back from Stillwater County regarding the draft Conditional Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for leasing a minimum number of beds at a discounted rate in the proposed Detention Facility; they are coordinating with their legal counsel. A similar MOU will be proposed to Sweet Grass County. Commissioner-elect Miller recounted a recent conversation he had with Musselshell Commissioner-elect Robert Pancratz who indicated that his County may be interested in exploring an MOU as well.
10:00 County Attorney Alex Nixon, Contract Deputy County Attorney Jacque Papez, Norman Stevens, and his realtor Phil Mankin met with Commissioners to discuss the Buy-Sell Agreement for the proposed Detention Facility land site. Commissioner Bullock detailed that there is a draft Interlocal Agreement with the Town of Joliet, but that the Annexation with the Town of Joliet must occur first and is the responsibility of Stevens as Seller per the signed Buy-Sell Agreement. Mankin provided Joliet Town Council meeting minutes showing that the Council approved the Annexation contingent upon an Application for Enlargement of Services (which Stevens feels is in the County’s purview). Blain stated that Joliet doesn’t want to enlarge their services without assurance that it won’t cost the Town. Stevens feels his obligations to the Buy-Sell Agreement have been fulfilled and wishes to not prolong the sale beyond the January 4th date set in the Buy-Sell Agreement. Discussion regarding the Annexation language in the Buy-Sell Agreement; Papez advised that the Contingency section of the Agreement allows for the Town of Joliet’s Conditional Annexation (pending Application for Enlargement of Services) as satisfaction of that requirement. The County will complete the Application for Enlargement of Services on Stevens’s behalf and Stevens will submit it since he is still the property owner. 10:35 Stevens and Mankin departed the meeting. Discussion continued regarding the Application for Enlargement and the draft Interlocal Agreement with Joliet. Commissioners feel confident that all processes can be completed by the January 4th Closing date. 10:45 Meeting closed to discuss a personnel issue. 11:10 meeting re-opened. Discussion regarding the draft MOU with Stillwater County referenced above for the proposed Detention Facility; the minimum financial obligation threshold avoids running a bond for operating the facility; discussion regarding inquiring with Big Horn County to determine their interest in an MOU. 11:15 Meeting closed to discuss litigation. 11:25 Meeting re-opened.
11:25 Robert Mensik joined the meeting to discuss the Roberts property he is interested in purchasing from the County. Commissioner Bullock stated that the County Attorney advised that the County cannot sell the property due to its history having been a dump and the environmental liability in perpetuity. Mensik will inquire with environmental engineers about getting bids for ground coring; Commissioner Bullock will inquire with Nixon to see whether clean cores would absolve environmental liability.
Commissioner Bullock engaged in a phone conversation with Sweet Grass County regarding the MOU for the proposed Detention Facility.