November 4th, 2021

Minutes from the November 4th, 2021 Regular Board Meeting

The meeting of the Lake of the Woods Soil and Water Conservation District was held in the Boardroom of the County Government Center.  

The meeting was called to order by John Sonstegard at 5:00 p.m.

Members present: John Sonstegard, Monica Dohmen, Frank Sindelir, Nancy Dunnell. Remote via Zoom – Roger Krause

Members absent: None

Others present: Land and Water Planning Director, Josh Stromlund; Resource Conservationist, Mike Hirst; Resource Conservationist, Corryn Trask; NRCS Resource Conservationist, Michael Steinhauer

A motion was made by Sindelir to approve the agenda.  The motion was seconded by Krause. 
Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.

A motion was made by Dohmen to approve the October 8th, 2021 minutes.  The motion was seconded by Dunnell.

The October Treasurer’s Report was unavailable for review.  

A motion was made by Sindelir to approve the bills as listed on the agenda.  The motion was seconded by Krause.

Old Business

Personnel policy waivers – continue or suspend – consensus of the board was to continue with the waivers.  

Special Reports

NRCS Partner updates – Michael Steinhauer, Resource Conservationist – Steinhauer’s report included CSP payments for 69 contracts, the upcoming EQIP deadline of November 19th, and CSP renewals.  

New Business

Personnel policy, 2022 wages and benefits and 2022 budget   

A motion was made by Sindelir, with a second by Krause, to increase the supervisor per diem rate to $125 per day, effective the first day of the 4th quarter (October 1, 2021).
Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.


Grant Extension Amendment for FY19 Local Capacity  
A motion was made by Dunnell, with a second by Dohmen, to authorize the FY19 Local Capacity grant extension amendment to extend the end date of the grant until December 31, 2022. 
Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.

Authorize return of unspent funds – Bostic CWF Grant   
A motion was made by Dohmen, with a second by Sindelir, to authorize the return of unspent Bostic Watershed Clean Water funds to the Board of Water and Soil Resources due to the project coming in under budget.  Total amount authorized will be based on the grant Financial Report, to be signed-off by the District Manager. 
Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.

Authorize Duane Fadness forest stewardship plan cost share application    

A motion was made by Dunnell, with a second by Sindelir, to authorize Fadness’s forest stewardship plan cost share application in the amount of $300 + $6.50 per acre, with total acres not to exceed 40.
Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.

Extend abandoned well sealing cost share applications  

A motion was made by Sindelir, with a second by Dunnell, to authorize the extension of all active abandoned well sealing contracts until December 31, 2022.  

Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.

Employee Assistance Program – MCIT vs Medica 

A motion was made by Dunnell, with a second by Dohmen, to rescind the portion of the October 14, 2021 motion which stated the SWCD would purchase the Employee Assistance Program through Medica. 
Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.

*A similar employee assistance program is already available through MN Counties Insurance Trust.

AIS Program Purchases  
A motion was made by Krause, with a second by Sindelir, to purchase 2,500 towels and 6 vests with AIS program funding.  Total cost is approximately $3,861.70 with Roseau SWCD covering one-half of the cost.
Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.

Landscape Stewardship Plan for Rainy-Rapid Watershed
A motion was made by Krause, with a second by Dohmen, to authorize a budget of up to $300 for the purchases of meeting supplies including food and refreshments as part of three landscape stewardship planning workshops to be held over the course of the next six months. 
Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.

Cost share violation
No action was taken.

Training and Travel Requests

MASWCD Annual Convention
A motion was made by Sindelir, with a second by Krause, to authorize travel expenses for staff and supervisors who wish to attend the MASWCD convention in Bloomington on December 12-14. Affirmative: Sonstegard, Dohmen, Krause, Sindelir, Dunnell Opposed: None Motion carried.

Staff Reportsthe board reviewed staff reports as presented with the agenda.  

Committee Reports
AIS and Keep it Clean

General Information and Discussion

Communication: letter from Peterson Company LTD regarding audit – see board packet.  

Abandoned well sealing cost share rates – general information on possibly raising current cost share rates for well sealing was presented. Action will be taken at the December board meeting.      

Koochiching SWCD Forester and stewardship plan writing for LW County – Trask notified the board that the Koochiching SWCD Forester was currently writing plans in Lake of the Woods County.     

Cost share program – tabled discussion

The next regular board meeting has been set for December 9th, 2021 at 5:00 p.m. in the Boardroom of the County Government Center.  

Adjourn: Dunnell Seconded: Krause

Meeting adjournment time: 8:00 p.m.

Secretary:_________________________________ Date:_____________________