May 24, 2018

May 24, 2018
Commissioners Robert ‘Pits’ DeArmond and Bill Bullock, and Administrative Assistant Angela Newell were present.
8:30 Pledge of Allegiance
9:00 Clerk and Recorder Marcia Henigman and Deputy Clerk and Recorder Christine Stovall met with Commissioners for preliminary budget. Marcia requested Deputy Christine Stovall’s wage be increased to 90% of the Clerk and Recorder’s base salary and that Deputy Lola Ashby’s wage be increased to 85% of the Clerk and Recorder’s base salary. Marcia noted she plans to change the division of duties within the office; election administration is more than a half time position and Marcia would like to separate those duties from the payroll clerk duties. She is considering consolidating payroll and accounts payable under one position that would not be a deputy position. Commissioner Bullock noted a higher starting wage rather than the probationary clerk salary may attract better applicant pool. Commissioners suggested education and or experience requirements be included in the job description. There was a discussion about establishing a County policy or training requirements to establish a wage schedule for elected official deputies so it is more uniform across departments and to ensure wage increases are merit and knowledge based.
9:30 County Attorney Alex Nixon met with Commissioners regarding his Preliminary Budget. Contract Civil Deputy Jacque Papez was present. Alex discussed creating a legal capital fund to create a cash reserve to pay for expert witnesses and potential costs of civil trial for any future large cases. Alex also requested a salary increase for Deputy Attorney Shannon Foley. Alex also noted Sheriff Josh McQuillan has reported continued issues with the Simulcast radio system.
10:00 County Attorney Alex Nixon, Civil Deputy Jacque Papez, Justice of the Peace Kevin Nichols, and City of Red Lodge Attorney Rebecca Narmore met regarding the City Court Agreement. They discussed various provisions of the draft contract including the docket notice provision; the County believes this should be an internal office policy and does not need to be included in the contract. 10:05 Mayor William Larson joined the meeting. Also discussed the provision for a backup judge to issue warrants. Kevin noted there are very few instances where a warrant needs to be signed immediately and he is almost always available for telephonic warrants. He also noted Dispatch has list of on call judges if something really needs to be signed immediately; the County will not make provisions for a judge to sign warrants in Kevin’s absence. Commissioner DeArmond moved to approve the Red Lodge City Court Agreement as amended pending adoption by the City of Red Lodge; Commissioner Bullock seconded; motion carried.

10:30 Commissioner Scott Blain joined the meeting.
Ken Karina met with Commissioners to request the Floodplain Permit fee be waived for his revised project. Commissioner Bullock moved to waive the fee; Commissioner Blain seconded; motion carried.
Sheriff Josh McQuillan and DES Coord. / GIS Mgr. Tom Kohley met with Commissioners for preliminary budget meetings. Sheriff McQuillan discussed a request to add another deputy or a bailiff/civil/transport officer at 70% Sheriff salary. Commissioner Blain noted additional staffing for a school resource officer would be nice for the County. Sheriff McQuillan noted decreased boarding prisoner costs and increased revenues from Joliet and Fromberg Law Enforcement Services Contracts would pay for the position. Discussed limitations of officer not able to carry firearm. $18,000 staff cost difference at 70% rate and a deputy at 90% of the Sheriff’s base salary.
11:30 Commissioner DeArmond left to attend a preconstruction meeting with the Montana Department of Transportation for the US Highway 212 realignment project.
Discussed communications budget.
11:40 DES Coord. / GIS Mgr. Tom Kohley met with Commissioners regarding preliminary budget. Tom discussed adding staff to assist him with community outreach and rural addressing for approximately 10 hours per week. Tom also noted the State is changing the Emergency Management Planning Grant (EMPG) funding cycle to line up with the State’s fiscal year which will result in an extra quarter of funding this year. Tom would like to allocate that funding to new DES truck and apply for reverted funds to complete Emergency Operations Center (EOC) upgrades to connect the Edgar Gruel building to the internet.
12:00 Lunch

2:00 Commissioners Blain and Bullock met with Fromberg Mayor Shirley Miller, Sheriff Josh McQuillan, Undersheriff Jeff Schmalz, DES Coord. / GIS Mgr. Tom Kohley, and Search and Rescue Coordinator John Trapp regarding flooding potential in Fromberg. Commissioner DeArmond participated via telephone. Carbon County News Editor Alistair Baker and Audrey Walleser were also present. The National Weather Service is projected record water levels with the upcoming high temperatures and moisture. Participants discuss preparedness measures including coordinating filling and placing sandbags, protecting water and sewer lagoons, evacuation areas, and locations to stage resources, incident command, and shelters.

Commissioners and the Town of Fromberg will hold informational meetings in Fromberg over the weekend to keep residents appraised of the flood danger.

Respectfully submitted: Angela Newell, Administrative Assistant