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01-24-2022 Minutes

January 24, 2022

North Platte, Nebraska

 

Meeting of the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners. Present were Commissioners Joe Hewgley, Kent Weems, Micaela Wuehler, Chris Bruns, Jerry Woodruff and County Clerk, Rebecca Rossell.  Woodruff offered prayer. Bruns called the meeting to order at 9:00 A.M.

 

Chairman Bruns announced the Open Meeting Act with amendments is posted for public review and the county board will comply with the open meeting requirements.

 

Motion by Weems, seconded by Woodruff to approve the minutes regarding the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners meeting held on January 18, 2022.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Weems, seconded by Hewgley to receive and order filed the treasurer’s receipts.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Woodruff, seconded by Weems to receive and order filed the Condition of the Treasury of Lincoln County, Nebraska from July 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Woodruff, seconded by Wuehler to adopt Resolution No. 2022-02 authorizing the County Treasurer to invest funds for Lincoln County for 2022.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Woodruff, seconded by Weems to receive and order filed the fee report submitted by the County Sheriff in the amount of $3906.24.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Wuehler, seconded by Hewgley to authorize the Chairman to sign an Escrow Agreement with Mid-Nebraska Community Foundation, Inc. for the West State Farm Trail.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

The Lincoln County Board of Commissioners recessed at 9:15 A.M. and the Lincoln County Board of Equalization convened.

 

Chairman Bruns announced the Open Meeting Act with amendments is posted for public review and the county board will comply with the open meeting requirements.

 

County Assessor, Julie Stenger appeared along with Alex Gurciullo, County Treasurer.

 

Motion by Weems, seconded by Woodruff to approve the minutes regarding the Lincoln County Board of Equalization meeting held on January 18, 2022. Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

No certificates of correction or refund submitted by the County Assessor.

 

Motion by Hewgley, seconded by Weems to approve the motor vehicle tax exemption application submitted by American Red Cross as recommended for approval by the County Treasurer.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Wuehler, seconded by Weems to approve the motor vehicle tax exemption application submitted by Maria Evangelical Church, Hershey, Nebraska, as recommended for approval by the County Treasurer.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

The Lincoln County Board of Equalization adjourned at 9:22 A.M. and the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners reconvened.

 

A public hearing was opened at 9:30 A.M. to receive comment on the application for an amendment to the Lincoln County Comprehensive Plan 2013 Future Land Use Map from Transitional Agriculture to Residential Acreage on property located in Section 22; Township 14 North; Range 32 and Section 23; Township 14 North; Range 32 of the 6th P.M., Lincoln County, Nebraska.

 

Lincoln County Planning Director, Judy Clark, reported that the Lincoln County Planning Commission had approved the amendment and planning staff has no objections.

 

Commissioner Weems asked if this would impact zoning on neighboring properties.

 

Clark replied that it would not.  It will just make it easier in the future if any other person would want to have an administrative subdivision.

 

Commissioner Bruns stated his concern is with the industrial zoning in this area which is close to the proposed Rail Park.  As the Rail Park is developed he wants residents to know the proximity of this project.  He also recognizes we have a housing shortage in the county.

 

The public hearing was closed at 9:39 A.M.

 

Motion by Wuehler, seconded by Weems to approve the application for an amendment to the Lincoln County Comprehensive Plan 2013 Future Land Use Map from Transitional Agriculture to Residential Acreage on property located in Section 22; Township 14 North; Range 32 and Section 23; Township 14 North; Range 32 of the 6th P.M., Lincoln County, Nebraska.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

A public hearing was opened at 9:42 A.M. to receive comment on the application by Brad Betts to rezone certain property from a TA-1 Transitional Agricultural District to R-1 Rural Estates Residential District located 3657 North Trinity Road on property described as Betts 2nd Administrative Subdivision on part of the SW ¼ of Section 23; Township 14 North; Range 32 West of the 6th P.M., Lincoln County, Nebraska.

 

Judy Clark, Lincoln County Zoning Director, commented that this is to rezone the Bett’s property only. The owner’s intent is to only do a one lot split.

 

Commissioner Weems questioned if this property or adjacent property would have to go before the Planning Commission again if they would want to subdivide further.

 

Clark responded yes.

 

The public hearing was closed at 9:44 A.M.

 

Motion by Weems, seconded by Woodruff to approve the application by Brad Betts to rezone certain property from a TA-1 Transitional Agricultural District to R-1 Rural Estates Residential District located 3657 North Trinity Road on property described as Betts 2nd Administrative Subdivision on part of the SW ¼ of Section 23; Township 14 North; Range 32 West of the 6th P.M., Lincoln County, Nebraska. Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.0

 

Clark told County Board members that if they had not approved the last two items, the application for the administrative subdivision would not have met county regulations.  This application proposed is for a lot split.

 

Janet Winder, who lives at 3737 North Trinity Road, stated that they have lived there since 1975 and would like to see the property stay agricultural.  They are concerned about other houses going up in the future and how this will affect their property in the future.

 

Commissioner Weems commented that he had heard reassurances from the Planning Commission that they would have to go through additional processes to build additional houses.

 

Brad Betts stated they had talked with her husband, Larry, several times and told him that he was trying to sell some of his land to his brother-in-law.

 

Motion by Woodruff, seconded by Hewgley to approve the application by Brad Betts for Betts 3rd Administrative Subdivision located at 3657 Trinity Road in a TA-1 Transitional Agricultural District.  The property is described as Betts 2nd Administrative Subdivision in the SW ¼ of Section 23; Township 14 North; Range 32 West of the 6th P.M., Lincoln County, Nebraska.

 

Commissioner Weems commented in the process of zoning changes there has to be give and take.  The Planning Commission takes their role very seriously.

 

Commissioner Wuehler stated that change can be hard, but it can also be necessary.  Good neighbor relationships are important to our community.

 

Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Brian Cox of Nebraska Cooperative Extension introduced himself to the County Board.  He is the Engagement Zone Coordinator for Zone Three which includes 8 counties.  His role is to work with the extension educators as well as community leaders and the University of Nebraska.  He is working on an update to the interlocal agreement with the counties.

 

Discussed the possibility of a study concerning parking around the Lincoln County Courthouse.

 

County Clerk, Rebecca Rossell, reported there is a line item in the current budget, in the Keno Fund, for a courthouse parking study.

 

Commissioner Bruns feels that parking is going to be an even bigger issue in the future in this area.

 

Rossell commented that when the current jail was built, the employee parking lot was used to build the new Sheriff’s Office and Detention Center.  She would like to see if there is a viable solution so the public can access parking.

 

Commissioner Hewgley gave back history on the parking issues in the past and commented that parking solutions have been offered to the employees.

 

Commissioner Bruns stated there is a parking problem, and it is not just employee parking.  He would like to see if there is a possible solution and if that solution could be working with the City of North Platte.

 

Commissioner Hewgley also brought up issues with the Handicapped Accessible parking on the south side of the courthouse.  He would welcome a parking study.  He suggested that the Building & Grounds Committee look at the issues initially to begin the process.

 

Commissioner Bruns requested the Building & Grounds Committee to do research on possible solutions, consultants and have conversation with the City of North Platte on this topic.

 

Motion by Hewgley, seconded by Woodruff to adopt Resolution No. 2022-03 appointing county depositories for 2022 for county funds with the following financial institutions:  Adams Bank & Trust; Equitable Bank; FNBO; First State Bank; NebraskaLand Bank; & Western Nebraska Bank.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Woodruff, seconded by Wuehler to approve the creation of U.S. Notes with standing funds to being interest income by the County Treasurer.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Weems, seconded by Woodruff to approve and authorize the Chairman to sign a special designated liquor application submitted by K & L Enterprises/Wild Bills Bowling and Brigham’s Taproom for an event on March 5, 2022 at Harbor Lights.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Discussion was held on the 2022 salaries/wages for the following department heads:  Lincoln County Highway Supt., Noxious Weed Supt., Veterans Service Officer, and Region 51 Emergency Management Director.  Discussion centered on the NACO salary study, the pay of other counties in our array for these positions and the duties of each office in comparison to the counties in our array.

 

Motion by Woodruff, seconded by Hewgley to set the Lincoln County Highway Supt. salary for 2022 at $72,000.00.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Hewgley, seconded by Woodruff to set the Lincoln County Noxious Weed Supt., salary for 2022 at $48,000.00.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Woodruff, seconded by Wuehler to set the Veterans Service Officer salary for 2022 at $51,000.00.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Weems, seconded by Woodruff to set the Region 51 Emergency Management Director’s salary for 2022 at $60,000.00.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion was made by Wuehler and seconded by Woodruff to not appoint Carla O’Dell as Lincoln County Highway Supt. effective immediately.

 

Commissioner Hewgley asked for justification for Commissioner Wuehlers motion.

 

Commissioner Wuehler replied that she listened to the CD recording from last year, done research and had feedback from constituents.  The feedback was concerning condition of the roads and a culture of inappropriate and unprofessional behavior towards employees of the Lincoln County Dept. of Roads.

 

Commissioner Hewgley asked what recording she listened to.

 

Commissioner Wuehler responded that it was the one from last year’s appointments.  There were positive remarks but the board can’t keep addressing the same situation with no improvement.

 

Commissioner Weems stated that historically his issue has been lack of initiative in the department.  In fairness, the County Board had control at times and personnel items can be a real challenge.

 

Commissioner Woodruff commented that he had various positions on the highway superintendent in the three years he has been on the board.  He also has had numerous contacts about the toxic work environment, turnover and lack of initiative.  The issues have not changed in three years.

 

Commissioner Bruns reported that current highway superintendent had done a lot of good things in many regards, but there is room for improvement in the process and product of this department.

 

Commissioner Hewgley asked if she would be notified immediately that she is no longer in this position.

 

The motion was amended by Wuehler and seconded by Woodruff to not appoint Carla O’Dell as Lincoln County Highway Supt, effective as of 2:00 P.M. today.  Upon roll call vote Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Hewgley voted “nay”.  Motion carried.

 

Motion by Weems, seconded by Woodruff to reappoint Todd Herndon as Lincoln County Noxious Weed Supt. for 2022.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Woodruff, seconded by Weems to reappoint Paul Cooper as the Veterans Service Office for 2022.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Motion by Woodruff, seconded by Weems to reappoint Brandon Myers as the Region 51 Emergency Management Director for 2022.  Upon roll call vote Hewgley, Weems, Wuehler, Bruns and Woodruff voted “aye”.  Nays, none.

 

Hear concerns from Elected Officials, Department Heads or their representative.

 

Approved the following claims as presented for payment:

 

The meeting was adjourned at 12:13 P.M.

 

Advance notice and the agenda for the January 24, 2022 board meetings were sent to the county board and all others requesting the same.  Advance public notice (includes agenda) of the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners meeting and the Lincoln County Board of Equalization meeting was posted at the Lincoln County Courthouse, City Hall and the Lincoln County website on January 21, 2022; and was also emailed to the media on January 21, 2022.

 

The agenda for the meetings to be held on Monday, January 31, 2022 will be kept

continually current and open for inspection at the office of the Lincoln County Clerk.  The regular meeting of the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners will be at the Lincoln County Courthouse in the Commissioners Room at 9:00 A.M.  The regular meeting of the Lincoln County Board of Equalization will be at the Lincoln County Courthouse in the Commissioners Room at 9:15 A.M.

 

 

Rebecca J. Rossell

Lincoln County Clerk

 

 

 

 

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