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Board squabbles over assignments

By Staff | Jan 6, 2013

The Faribault County Board of Commissioners spent their first meeting of the year on Wednesday, Jan. 2, discussing assignments for 2013.

The assigning of commissioners to various committees for the year led to some disagreement on the board.

Greg Young, who took the place as the chair at the start of the meeting, opened the assignment of positions up for discussion.

Commissioner John Roper suggested that personnel and labor negotiations become assigned on a rotating basis in the future.

“Martin County fills their spots on a rotating basis,” he says. “I?think this is something we should look into doing so we all have a chance to be a part of the process.”

However, Tom Loveall and Bill Groskreutz, who served on this committee last year, didn’t agree with the idea of rotating.

“Negotiations aren’t done in a single cycle,”?Loveall says. “You lose continuity when you’re rotating in and out.”

Groskreutz agreed with Loveall, saying that with the upcoming retirement of Brenda Ripley from personnel, the board will want as much experience there as possible.

“I worked up to my assignments on various boards so I’m not backing down from this one,”?Loveall adds. “If we change hands anywhere, it needs to be decided comprehensively.”

He suggested that if the board wishes to change assignments at all they should have a work session. Then they would be able to look at the workload each commissioner has taken on and where their individual interests lie.

“The board needs to be informed and have a voice in what’s going on with the personnel and labor committee,”?Roper says.

Despite discussion, the board approved the assignments as they were written, with Groskreutz and Loveall remaining as chair and co-chair of the committee in discussion.

Also, in preparation for the year, the board considered appointment of boardmembers to committees, including; AMC Committee, Intergovernmental Relations, Prairieland Solid Waste Board and Bi-County Human Service Board.

One item on the list of committees led to more discussion with the board city and township meetings.

The city of Wells has requested that commissioner Groskreutz attend city council meetings more often.

“If the city wants their commissioners there more often, the city should pay them, not the county,”?Commissioner Tom Warmka says.

Young reminded the board that it is important for the commissioners to stay connected.

“There’s quite a bit of communication that needs to take place between all the levels of government,”?he says. “That includes city and township levels.

Groskreutz represents District 3 which deals with a lot of what happens in Wells.

“You’re (Warmka) dealing more heavily with townships,”?Loveall adds.

The commissioners voted to approve the board appointments for 2013.

In other business;

The board made citizen committee appointments. Jake Anderson was replaced on the Economic Authority by Jack Heinitz.

“Jake (Anderson) served there for 10 years,” Groskreutz says. “He will be greatly missed.”

Other citizen appointments included Sue Dundas for library board, Peter Hassing for Planning and Zoning and Carmen Klatt, who will serve another term on the Extension board.

Commissioner Warmka had citizen appointments to make, but still had to verify their interest before they were appointed.

The next Board of Adjustment and Planning and Zoning meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 8, at 7 p.m.

Planning and Zoning will discuss the request for a Conditional Use Permit for the Loon Inn on that night.

The board considered bids for the county’s official newspaper. They approved the Faribault County Register as the official paper for 2013.