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County board approves changes in staff

By Staff | Dec 20, 2010

Outgoing Faribault County commissioner Butch Erichsrud was presented with a certificate of appreciation from the County Extension Committee last week.

Faribault County Commissioners almost needed an employee scorecard to keep up with Central Services Director Brenda Ripley last Tuesday morning.

Ripley had a list of employee changes to go over with the commissioners, and at times it was almost hard to keep up.

First, she asked the board to OK hiring Eva Adams to replace Sherry Asmus in the County Recorder’s office.

Ironically, Adams and Asmus had both run for the position of recorder. Asmus was elected in last November’s election, and Adams had now applied for the No. 2 position in the office, being vacated by Asmus.

“Eva is currently at $16.91 per hour, which is the highest she can go in her current position,” Ripley told the board. “She will go to a Step 7, which is $17.46 per hour, in her new job.”

The board authorized the change, which will go into effect Jan. 1, when Asmus takes office, too. Now, they also have to post the opening to replace Adams.

Ripley’s next employee change was to ask the board to accept the resignation of Alice LaMont in the county treasurer/auditor’s office. Commissioner Tom Loveall jokingly asked what would happen if they did not.

“She has been a great employee and we are sad to see her leave,” he says. “But we wish her well.”

The board accepted the resignation, and then also accepted Ripley’s proposal to fill the soon to be vacant spot with an in house posting. This means current county employees will have a chance to apply for the senior technician position before it is open to the public.

Ripley next asked the board to pass a resolution making Joe Uderman the interim county assessor, replacing Sue Wiltse, who is retiring.

“Joe is working hard to pass all the tests necessary to become a certified assessor, but it will take a while,” Ripley says. “In the meantime we have permission from the state to have John Thompson sign off on all documentation, until Joe is fully certified.”

Uderman would be the department head and actually run the assessor’s office. Thompson, as county auditor/treasurer, has the authority to sign any documents for the county which need an official signature.

“Maybe we should change John’s (Thompson) title to ‘King,”’ Loveall said. Ripley responded that they already called him the ‘Big Dog.’

Thompson says the assessor work will be minimal for him, justing signing two documents a year, and he doesn’t plan on doing it forever.

Uderman will be paid at a Step 2 basis, making his salary $46,117 per year.

“It will take him a long time to get to where he should be, as a department head (salary-wise),” Ripley says, “maybe six or seven years.

The board approved his appointment to the interim position.

When asked if there were any more personnel changes the board needed to make, Ripley replied, “no,” but then quickly added that they were going to start interviewing nine candidates for the sheriff’s deputy position later that day.

“I will be back with that name for the next meeting,” she says with a laugh. And maybe a proposal to replace whoever gets hired to fill Alice LaMont’s spot, if that person is a current employee, Loveall added.

“We will cross that bridge when and if it happens,” Ripley says.