County commissioners follow up on issues from past months

It was a quiet meeting, Tuesday November 1, as the Haakon County Commissioners followed up with action on issues from previous months.

The commissioners decided to not have county employees fill out time cards. Commissioner Rita O’Connell reported that the person she spoken to in regards to time cards stated that they were a good policy to have, but he did not say if they were required or not. Auditor Shirley Dennis informed the board that she found out elected officials do not have to submit time cards. Commissioner Don Eymer noted, “We have run a long time without them.” Commissioner Mel Smith was also not in favor of having the time cards. He stated he could not see where the current system had been abused. He added if time cards were used a friend could punch the clock for them anyway. When President of the Board Lawrence Schofield called for a vote on the matter, Commissioners O’Connell and Obie Brunskill voted in favor. Eymer and Smith voted against the measure. Schofield broke the tie with a vote against the time cards.

Kenny Neville, highway superintendent, informed the commissioners that he had looked at the land where Rob and Molly Lytle wanted a trail cut and possibly a road across two miles of prairie. Neville reported the project would take more time and money then he had first anticipated. The commissioners decided to send a letter to the Lytles noting this decision and stating they are welcome to come to the next commissioners meeting to discuss the matter further if they so desire.

Neville asked for approval to appoint a foreman for the highway department and a raise for that person. Neville stated that when he is on vacation, on business as the president for the South Dakota Highway Superintendents Association, and for county projects that are far apart, a foreman would insure that work continued. The commissioners approved the action that would cost Neville’s budget an approximate $1,000-$1,500 more annually. The money will come out of the existing 2005 and 2006 budgets.

Virgil Smith, Haakon County’s weed supervisor, met with the commissioners to discuss his budget, a four-wheeler, and the purchase of chemicals.

Due to a misunderstanding between Dennis and Smith, Smith and the weed board were unable to purchase weed spray when they needed to this fall. They wanted to use the chemicals on the Canadian thistle that is in Haakon County. The time for effective treatment is passed, but they were given permission to purchase the chemicals now for next year.

The commissioners also gave Smith approval to trade the weed board’s four-wheeler for a spray applicator.

The commissioners entered into an executive session to discuss legal matters with State’s Attorney Chip Kemnitz and Dennis in attendance at 1:20 p.m. Kemnitz and Dennis left the executive session after approximately 20 minutes. The commissioners came out of executive session at 2:12 with no action taken.

In other business the commissioners:

•approved last month’s meeting minutes and payment of bills;

•declined to close a section line as requested by Clark Morrison;

•approved signing an agreement with Pennington County and Rapid City concerning hazardous materials;

•approved for county employees to have the day after Thanksgiving off;

•approved a raffle for the Milesville Fire Department;

•approved for elected officials and county commissioners to attend a district meeting in Custer in late November; and

•approved an automatic supplement for grant purposes and also approved a transfer of funds from the contingency fund in the amount of $18,594.91 for salary and supplies since January for the emergency manager budget.