May 30, 2017

The Okanogan County Board of Commissioners met in regular session on May 30, 2017 with Commissioner Jim DeTro, Commissioner Chris Branch, and LaleŮa Johns, Clerk of the Board present.

Commissionersí Staff Meeting
HR Tanya Craig, Fair Staff Josh Freel and Kim Spivey, HR Debi Hilts, and Perry Huston

Motion Settlement Agreement
Commissioner Hover moved to approve a settlement agreement motion was seconded. Commissioners discussed their wish to adopt the agreement by resolution. Commissioner Branch moved to table the motion to adopt the agreement. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.

Ms. Hilts provided her recruitment update explaining who was retiring and recruitment process for filling those positions. Commissioners would like HR to provide exit interview/surveys of employees leaving county employment.

Director Huston updated the board regarding the draft letter for Grizzly bear comments. The reply must be sent in by May 31.

Commissioner DeTro stated he learned during his attendance at the WIR meeting in Sun River Resort Oregon that the Feds will not be allocating any funds toward endangered species. A workshop on government coordination was held at the WIR meeting too, which helped local government learn about government coordination. There is a guidedance document that is circulating from Randy Philips.

Commissioners discussed tourism and what direction they wish to go in for consistency with county tourism.

Director Huston discussed the need to set up a meeting with Dept. of Ecology, Sage Park. Commissioner Hover asked about having a joint meeting with Chelan County when Ms. Park comes. It could be a circuit meeting where they meet individually with the many agencies and counties of interest. It was thought the meeting with Okanogan County would happen during one of Director Hustonís future study sessions.

BPA may be meeting with Upper Beaver Creek to observe the situation there regarding the log dam issues.

Motion Executive Session RCW 42.30.110(1)(i)
Commissioner Hover moved to go into executive session at 9:40 a.m. for 10 minutes inviting Perry Huston and attorney Albert Lin to discussion pending litigation to which the county may be a party. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.

Commissioners extended the executive session at 9:50 a.m. for another 10 minutes.

Commissioners ended executive session at 10:00 a.m. no decisions were made.

Update-Assessor- Scott Furman
Assessor Furman explained the property assessment process and when the commissioners increase the collections how that affects the total collections. He explained there were 13,000 parcels revalued this year with notices in Brewster and Coulee Dam going out May 31. The market has seen an upswing in the last year or two. There is a shortage of quality housing. Land is selling for higher than ever. Irrigated land values are increasing to follow the market. It appears irrigated acre values look around $10,000 per acre. Land values of unirrigated lands are being watched.

Mr. Furman explained the tax calendar being met. The appraisal staff is appraising new construction and it appears to be quite a bit. He explained it usually runs about 60 million mark with the highest being about 90 million. It is picking up. Commissioner Hover asked about tax base value and when it goes up. The levy rate can go up or down based on two things. The amount collected is still the same. He further explained how school district rates can go up due to voter approved O&M levies. It used to be 14% of their total budget but it is now allowed at 24% of their total budget making it easier to fund education by putting the burden at the local level.

Bid Opening- Highway 7 South Bridge Project- Public Works
Josh Thomson Amanda Moody and member John Graham taking notes.

At 10:45 a.m. Commissioner DeTro stated the time for receiving bids is past. Two bids were received for Highway 7 Bridge. Commissioner DeTro opened the bids.

North Central Construction Inc. Moses Lake
Bid Bond and power of attorney attached all other information required appeared to be as well.

Total Bid $2,553,056.25

Subcontractor list was provided.

Selland Construction Inc. Wenatchee
Bid Bond and power of attorney attached all other information required appeared to be as well.

Total Bid $2,331,581.75

Subcontractor list was provided.

The apparent low bid appeared to be Selland. Bids will be reviewed by Public Works and a recommendation provided in the near future for commissioners approval.

Engineer Estimate for this project was about $1,797,775

Bid Opening-Landfill Roll-Off Bins-Public Works
Josh Thomson Amanda Moody and several bidders taking notes.

At 11:00 a.m. Commissioner DeTro stated the time for receiving bids for roll off bins is past. One bid was received for Solid Waste Roll off bins. Commissioner DeTro opened the bids.

Solid Waste Systems, Inc., Spokane
Specs were called out.

Total Bid $66,542.04
Bids will be reviewed by Public Works and a recommendation provided in the near future.

Engineer Estimate was approximately $120,000.

Members of the public John Graham, Jeff Zwar, and Katie Haven taking notes.

Update Public Works-Josh Thomson & Ben Rough
HR Tanya Craig

Ben Rough stated he does need a formal response when he requests personal time off.

Mr. Rough explained that he asked Ms. Craig to attend this meeting as the Union had questions about temp employees receiving a COLAís the same as union employees. We may need a policy for public works to address this and a resolution adopting a salary schedule. A salary schedule specific for Public Works is recommended as they do not have one. What they do have is for union employees and they have nonunion employees that should be on a schedule. Ms. Craig stated the only salary schedule we have is for nonunion. Staff created a breakout for Public Works for Mr. Rough, but it doesnít identify those non bargaining employees and that causes some confusion. The commissionersí decision as to what that looks like. Non bargaining employees should not be reaping the same benefits as those in a union. A policy is needed for consistency for temporary employees. The wage temp employees receive is the step one wage from the union agreement. Mr. Rough explained how this causes a problem and how he sees it. He agreed they are not union and should not receive the same benefits as the Union employees receive but it is the only salary schedule they have to refer to. It does affect moral and those temps may not return due to no increases. Commissioner Hover asked what the union employees thoughts are on the temp employees. Ms. Craig referred to another union not this one, as those employees did have issues with temps being paid union wages when they didnít have to work for it or earn their stripes.

Engineer Thomson explained there is a huge difference between what the actual benefits are to being represented that are not allowed for Temp employees. No one has asked for this, stated Mr. Rough.

Commissioner Hover said the question to be asked is what the cost to getting the task done is. Commissioner DeTro explained there are some temps that say that is all they want to do. The number of people affected is around 10 temps. Budget impact would be the difference between cola for hourly is it going to be a plagerization of current contract or will it be CIP. It would be around $3000, stated Mr. Rough. The temps never have step increases. Mr. Craig said the options discussed was formally adopt a schedule and have a section for temps. Or add the temps to nonbargaining pay scale. Commissioner DeTro would like a synopsis of the options to be drafted for commissioners to review.

Rental Rate for Office and storage space
Clerk of the Board and Mr. Rough previously discussed the issue of setting a consistent rate. The conclusion was that he facilitate a uniform rental rate the county would use which would be adopted by resolution. A group would work on drafting something for the near future. Commissioner Hover is for adopting a set schedule for charging what we charge. The auditor would see we are not just pulling the numbers out of the sky.

Jeff Zwar and Katie Haven left the meeting at about 11:45 a.m.

Mr. Rough discussed In House CDL Endorsements. He doesnít want to offer help to employees to get their CDLís only to lose them due to another job opportunity. Engineer Thomson explained how one could earn an amount towards the cost of the CDL which would help keep employees on staff. If they decide to leave the cost of the CDL would need to be paid at the remaining value.

Engineer Thomson provided updates regarding the items on his agenda.

He explained he is working on funding that will need to be reviewed for eligible road issues.

He further explained he is identifying funding for Peter Dan road. He will call three consultants to provide public works services that are under the threshold. He only has signing authority for $5,000 he would obtain commissioner approval if over that. This would be for development of the concept for the solution. He would like to get a temporary one lane road by the slide but it was too wet when they tried.

Upper Beaver Creek meeting is happening sometime in the afternoon.

Levees were discussed. Public Works is responsible for three levees. Commissioner Branch asked if there was any movement on the Okanogan levee property. It isnít being worked on at the moment replied Mr. Rough he will look at it. Commissioner Branch said another thing would be that many have limited or no ownership and that is a problem. Engineer Thomson stated there is no funding for levee maintenance.

Federal Safety funds and plan is due. Engineer Thomson will complete tomorrow.

RTPO meeting in Olympia and Engineer Thomson received a request from Soo Ing-Moody for him to go in her place. He asked the board for permission. The board was in favor of him going.

Engineer Thomson stated there was support on several proposed speed limit changes that are scheduled for future consideration. Commissioner Hover had some concern about the consent agenda wording for resolutions 91-2017 and 92-2017 which actually direct the engineer to report on the speed limit changes. He stated he received calls as folks thought the resolutions were adopting speed limit changes without a public process, which is not the case. He asked the Clerk of the Board to be more careful with the wording on future consent agenda items. The Clerk of the Board acknowledged the request.

Engineer Thomson didnít have a lot of updates on current projects listed.

WATV map coordination continues. Commissioner Branch did send out a message to DNR and Forest Service on these propositions.

Commissioner Hover asked about the Okanogan River being over flood stage. He would like to be prepared for the worst as there is still a lot of snow and high temperatures which could cause significant issues. Engineer Thomson asked how the commissioners felt about him working from home a few days when necessary. The commissioners have no problem with that.

Member of the public left at 12:15 p.m.

Citizens Comment Period
members of the public Katie Haven, John Grisham Jeff Zwar

Ms. Haven 135 McFarland Creek Rd. explained she hoped to hear about that road and the plans for the issues happening. Only 8 people live on that road and has been suffering damage because the culvert has been plugging and the public works has been on site to address those issues. There was a pile of dirt was left on the road on Friday and that was an issue because there was barely another way out on a forest service road that was barely passible as it was washing out too. It is critical for the residents up there to have a road out. Commissioner Hover stated he did discuss the issue with Public Works but they made the call to get the crew together to provide for those issues. He did not direct them to do anything specifically. Ms. Haven stated the river bank has washed into the creek. No one has ever seen the creek like this and now everyone is thinking about what they need to do if this becomes normal on McFarland Creek. It is a real concern she wanted to relay in regards to access roads. The Forest service road used to be well maintained and now it is really bad. The road is an emergency road for fire.

Commissioner Hover stated the board is aware of the amount of road damage happening. The forest service did tell him they were going to fix the alternate road the residents have been using.

Mr. Zwar member of the public explained his problems. He has lived on McFarland creek for 45 years. He appreciates the work done by the county. He also said it isnít just a problem from the 2014 Carlton fire. He explained the hunter hungry project of the forest service which would demonstrate the effectiveness of prescribed burns. He explained the creek has a consistent flow throughout the year. About 7 years ago the creek started to continuously flow through his ranch. Mr. Liu told him he intended on burnout that watershed every few years, and Mr. Zwar is concerned about his steep watershed area. This isnít on one time thing. The main culvert and up on his place there are at least two other issues with water over the road. A 12 foot culvert was installed up there about two weeks ago that is not full length. There is another culvert up by his spring is crushed causing water over the roadway causing about 200 feet to be submerged. That needs to be addressed in a permanent fashion. The neighbors up farther from him by a switchback where the bank has sluffed off there are some warning cones there, but the neighbor is building another road to avoid that section. A contractor came and assessed the issue at the bottom of the road with a different solution than the county engineer. The contractor with over 40 yearsí experience suggested to Mr. Zwar a different sized culvert of 48 inches be installed. Commissioner Hover explained many of the culverts were installed when there was no water issues. Mr. Zwar showed the board photos of the issues he spoke about.

Commissioners thanked them both for their comments. The two members of the public left the meeting.

Discussion- Noxious Weed Signing Authority-Anna Lyon
Ms. Lyon explained signing authority for weed board as they sign for her travel expense claims. There doesnít appear to be any directive from the county commissioners to authorize that. She would like a resolution from the board to allow the weed board to sign off on her travel vouchers for her travel for county weed business. She is required to travel both in county and out of county. She would like the commissionersí approval to allow her board to sign for her travel claims rather than the commissioners. Commissioner Branch explained ultimately the commissioners do approve the vouchers. He doesnít have a problem with it. Commissioner Hover stated he likes to see the travel sheets and he is not in favor of that as the commissioners have direct oversite of that. It is his way of knowing what that department head is doing. It isnít a control thing. Ms. Lyon explained that Finance Manager Hall needs Ms. Lyonís claim for expenses signed by the commissioners prior to Ms. Lyon submitting to Ms. Hall for payment.

Ms. Lyon explained the state is addressing the RCW 17.10 that will clarify how the Noxious Weed board and County Board of Commissioners governs the actions of the Noxious Weed department head. Ms. Lyon does sit on the legislative committee who is addressing the RCW and she hopes it will be submitted for next cycle for approval.

Bid Award-Legal Newspaper Designation
Teresa Myers, Omak Chronicle, member of the public John Grisham

Commissioners reviewed the bids of both papers. The Clerk of the Board explained both paperís bid appeared to be qualified per the bid requirements. Commissioner Hover considered the county does not publish many foreclosure notices and stated that Sound Publishing cost for those publications was considerably higher than the Chronicle, but overall the cost to publish was going to be less with Sound Publishing. The circulation numbers of the Chronicle was 1120 more than Sound. The savings comparison matrix of the Clerk of the Board was reviewed and discussed. The commissioners appreciated the spreadsheet that showed the overall comparison of the two papers as provided by the Clerk of the Board. Commissioner Branch stated it is easier when the publication can be submitted at a later time.

Motion Bid Award Legal Newspaper
Commissioner Hover moved to award the County Legal Newspaper contract to Sound Publishing in partnership with Methow Valley News for the contract year beginning July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018. Motion was seconded all were in favor, motion carried.

Executive Session RCW 42.30.110 (1) (g)-Commissionersí Conference Room
Commissioner Hover moved to go into executive Session at 2:45 p.m. for 15 minutes to discuss the performance of a public employee inviting HR Tanya Craig. Motion was seconded all were in favor, motion carried.

Executive Session ended at 3:00 p.m. no decisions were made.

Motion Grizzly Bear Comment Letter
Commissioner Branch moved to authorize the Grizzly Bear Comment letter and directed staff to send. Motion was seconded all were in favor, motion carried.

Commissioner Branch exited the meeting before the consent agenda was approved.

Approve Consent Agenda
Commissioner Hover moved to approve the consent agenda items 1-5, as presented. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.
1. Meeting Minutes May, 23 & May 24, 2017
2. Agreement- Thompson Pit- Shale Material- Public Works
3. Contract- Legal Printing 2017-2018-Newspaper
4. Resolution 91- 2017-Speed Limit Changes-Indian Dan and Robinson Cyn Rds
5. Resolution 92- 2017-Speed Limit Changes- Lost River, Old Carlton, and Texas Creek

Commissioner Hover adjourned the meeting at 5:00 p.m.