RECORD OF THE PROCEEDINGS

OKANOGAN COUNTY

JANUARY 29, 2018


The Okanogan County Board of Commissioners met in regular session on January 29, 2018, Chairman Commissioner Jim DeTro, Commissioner Chris Branch, and Laleña Johns, Clerk of the Board, present.

Commissioners convened the board at 9:00 a.m.

Executive Session RCW 42.30.110 (1) (i) Potential Litigation
Commissioner Hover moved to go into executive session at 9:30 a.m. for 20 minutes inviting David Gecas, Dan Higbee, and Tanya Craig to discuss potential litigation to which the county may become a party. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.

Commissioners exited executive session at 9:50 a.m. no decisions were made.

Commissioners asked Mr. Worden to come and discuss the state funding bills for the E911 communications. When Mr. Worden arrived he stated he met with Senator Steele and explained to him what our issue was as he is involved with the funding board. The federal budgets have not been disclosed yet. Commissioner DeTro stated they knew our request was to include the $400,000, but it was unclear whether that funding was taken care of outside the $5 million dollar budget consideration. Mr. Worden replied yes it was in addition to that capital operations allocation request. Commissioners discussed proposed legislation and the chances of the bill passing which include the various funding requests for capital operations projects.

Review Commissioners Agenda & Consent Agenda
Commissioners reviewed the consent agenda items.

Briefing Among Commissioners – Discuss Individual Weekly Meetings & Schedule
The commissioners discussed their individual activities and schedules

Update – Human Resources/Risk Management – Tanya Craig and/or Debi Hilts
The update was cancelled by Ms. Craig.

Commissioner Branch exited the meeting at 10:55 a.m. due to a telephone call.

Update – Public Works – Josh Thomson, Ben Rough
Engineer Thomson provided his agenda. He discussed the various items listed there.

Road Log
Gravel Crushing Project
Engineer Thomson discussed the project and noted contractor showed up a month early. They found some clay that must be removed beforehand. It appears a water line was broken that came off the landfill well. Engineer Thomson explained there is an agreement with the cat shelter to provide water to the shelter. The broken pipe cannot be repaired now due to the soil conditions. The water main also supplies water to the Sheriff’s Range. They have been informed the water is off. There are three users of the well and there is no group B system designation.

Elmway & Mazama Levees
Radio Communications for Public Works
Engineer Thomson explained why radios would help public works.

Secretary of State Grant Document Preservation
Engineer Thomson discussed the Grant and said only one award per agency would be granted. He further explained that Public Works would be considered its own agency and therefore if he applied other county departments could still apply. The grant is 100% reimbursable.

Consent Agenda Items
Engineer Thomson discussed the items on the commissioners consent agenda. He gave some additional information and asked the board if there were further questions.

The Engineer said Cattle guard renewals were starting to come through. He said several are listed on the consent agenda. Commissioner Hover asked about other agencies (Forest Service) being required to clean out the guards and how that is handled. The standard maintenance routine for the guards is that they be cleaned and maintained annually. Commissioner Hover asked if there are requirements for the owners to perform regular maintenance on the guards? Engineer Thomson explained Public Works cleans them out, but he will need to review the documents to determine the level of maintenance required.

Member of the public Salley Bull arrived at 11:25 a.m.

Ben Rough provided his agenda and he discussed the various items listed there.

Mr. Rough discussed the status of the open positions.

Under the Solid Waste grant, we can claim reimbursement for costs associated with the ecology. He will further explore as to what can be reimbursed.

Mr. Rough explained a loss that occurred when a duplicate gas card was found to have unauthorized charges to it in the amount of $11. Because the card was duplicate, the department did not know right away that it was missing.

Mr. Rough provided a snow grooming update. The trails are being groomed reliably in part because there is now staff coverage. The new groomer is working well.

Mr. Rough discussed why the upcoming supplemental appropriation was needed. He said a new budget line was created in 123 to replace the code that was not accurate. The bottom line is the same but how it is captured in Eden is different.

CDL reimbursements were discussed. The union does support it and they hope to memorialize via MOA.

Engineer Thomson is working with Ms. Craig to draft a policy that would address Public Works crews assisting people when stuck in the snow. Commissioners are in favor of considering a policy that would allow the county to assist when people are stuck in the snow. He has been working with Ms. Craig on the policy.

Continued Public Hearing – Lake Management District
Leah McCormack, Randy Clough, Anna Lyon, Dan Higbee, Angie Hubbard,

Commissioner DeTro opened up the hearing to staff. Director Huston gave his staff report.

He explained the issue of determining the assessment on agriculture or undeveloped lands on the lake. What constitute development? There are a number of parcels that do not have a house but do have sheds, parking lots, and appear to be used for something like recreation lots. The other question is lots that are later subdivided and how to apply the assessment on those. There is nothing in statute that speaks specifically to that. But, language could be created to specifically call out how that is to be done. Commissioner Branch suggested when land is sub divided in the area you are placed on the tax rolls and it would be easy to justify that way. The concern of the Canadians was the use of 24D which isn’t’ something we would use anyway.

Mr. Ford Waterstrat commented that discussions with Canada on the proposed district are still needed. It was stated that on the eastside of the lake burlap can be used on the north east side next to the border to reduce weeds as well. On the other side there is about 600-800 feet where there are no residents. It has taken some time to get everyone in place so he could talk to them. Most of the Canadians he spoke to said they had no problem with our proposed treatment of milfoil on the lake. The right people have to say it is okay though.

Anna Lyon explained she discussed the administration and management of the district with her weed board and they were in favor of helping with the situation. Director Huston stated an interlocal agreement with the weed board to manage the district would be needed or the commissioners could manage it.

The commissioners discussed ways to collect additional fees and what that system would look like. Commissioner Branch said people testified that there were many more beneficiaries than those parcels adjacent to the lake and they suggested looking into a means to collect a fee relative to boats for invasive species. Director Huston explained those plans he looked into had built in a more robust fee collection. Ms. Lyon doesn’t know who would have the authority to do that. Director Huston reminded the board of his suggestion about creating a Parks & Recreation District that would perhaps have a mechanism for collecting fees. He will continue to look into that.

Commissioner Hover stated the hearing has been published twice and yet there are still questions about who should be in and who shouldn’t. There are many questions still evolving about how it would work, so he asked if the board was willing to put that forth on the ballot. No parcels may be added without going back out for public hearing, no clear plan is demonstrated on who would manage the district, and so if we were to start over again, what things need to be in place in order to come up with the precise plan knowing what the issues are. Director Huston reminded the board the decision is to put the issue on the ballot then let the voters to decide. A resolution that lays out all the answers could be drafted in terms of developed versus undeveloped lots and how the agriculture lots would be handled. Everything could be built into the resolution as to how things are to be applied.

Commissioner DeTro asked if the board is comfortable to put the issue on the ballot. Commissioner Branch replied he would like to include Veranda Beach due to boat ramp access and the boat traffic related to the resort. He discussed planned developments and how those might be handled. Would they be assessed as a whole? Commissioner Branch suggested it could be assumed every residence on Veranda Beach has a boat. Determine the number of units then apply a multiplier so the development itself would be assessed. It is done with water systems.

Mr. Waterstrat said some lots are not large enough for sewer systems and water, but may have the ability to hook into a community system. Director Huston explained many of the lots are used in some way or another even if there is not a residence built. He suggested including them into the district then deferring the assessment until triggered. He suggested defining development as having a structure.

Commissioners discussed how Veranda Beach would be charged if those properties were part of the district.

Commissioner Hover is not comfortable moving it forward yet, he would like to have a study session devoted to developing the plan refining the map on how we do this. Commissioner Branch said it needs to be clear.

Mr. Waterstrat commented that initially they wanted to make it a fair assessment and process for everyone on the lake. The other part they are interested more in lake quality. It has more failing septic system and more effluent which creates blue green algae. If they have a plan for the whole lake the cost of the herbicides is given a discount. He thanked the board for the work and thought that has gone into the proposed so far. He is concerned about Veranda Beach being a voting block if they vote against it.

Staff will be directed to create a map that includes PD and Veranda Beach, do outreach to Veranda Beach and Noxious Weed board. Discuss/create a more refined budget which will be calibrated based on the first year’s collections. A new resolution to consider the new proposal would be drafted.

The commissioners discussed agriculture lands that are in the ag classification. Also discussed were the undeveloped lots would be those without a house. The board would like to include everything, but defer some of the assessments until the lot is developed.

Mr. Waterstrat recommended creating an advisory board with members from the different sides of the issue.

Motion Denying Proposed District on Ballot
Commissioner Hover moved to not move forward with putting the proposal to form the district on the ballot as it is. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.

Motion Staff Direction
Commissioner Hover moved to direct staff to perform the outreach and schedule a work session to create a more precise plan for the district. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.

Commissioner DeTro closed the hearing.

Commissioner Branch commented that the particular scheme must be perfected. Commissioner DeTro agreed. All the ideas should be aired before putting it to a vote, so we don’t set it up for failure.

 Update Planning – Perry Huston
Angie Hubbard, Dan Higbee Isabelle Spohn member of the public taking notes.

OCC 20
Director Huston discussed SSB 6091 and how our code might be updated to accommodate the new rules. Existing wells connected to a building: follow WAC 173-548 if they have a well log in hand then process per any other building permit. That is not what title OCC 20 says.

Building permits title 19.27.097
In WRIA 48 we will have to take an extra look at the well logs, but legislation directs us and it is distinct ESSB 6091 and review WAC 173-549.

There are rumblings by land owners who have heard something different from DOE regarding domestic uses. We would adhere to 3,000 gallon per day exemption, but title 20 requires something different.

Title 20 draft was stripped out of any language having to do with water leaving only permit processes relative to RCW 36.70B regulatory language.. If we do not use the Public Hearing processes with appeals for land development permitting then we could do away with much of title 20 and adopt another for the interim.

Director Huston explained with the possibility of applying for grants they could provide funds to do the following: water rights, reconcile wells to houses, buildable lands analysis, and permit tracking software. Does the board want to apply for grants? Yes, the commissioners were in favor of applying for grant funds. It is unknown how many hours would be spent on the grant research and writing. It may be expensive if we pay someone, but keeping it in house may be costly too in time. Commissioner Hover asked about what specifically would be removed from Title 20. Director Huston explained what notification requirements would remain.

Commissioner Branch discussed the reliance on ecology in our determination for water adequacy for development. Commissioner Hover said the climate has changed with ecology and now they are actually following the rules. Commissioner Branch would like our basic goals and objectives to be in our comp plan tying in water, power grid, and critical areas those speak to the density zone map. A resolution will be drafted outlining the changes for commissioners’ review.

Mt. Hull restoration project resolution is still being drafted and reviewed.

Director Huston discussed the resolution that would place the fairgrounds under current expense. The Clerk of the Board will prepare it for commissioners’ consideration tomorrow.

Discussion – Grant Application
Laurie Thomas, Cari Hall, Risk Manager Tanya Craig, Perry Huston

Commissioner Hover asked if the county applies for the Document Preservation Grant do we need to show we are spending the funds collected per RCW 36.22.170. Auditor explained there is an expense line that off sets the revenue line but nothing has been spent in the last several years. It has never been an issue with our audits because of the way the RCW is written. It isn’t a huge amount of money ($8,000 annually) but it could be used to preserve documents for other departments. The commissioners want to ensure the funds are receipted and used accordingly. The expenditure line currently has $0.00 budget to it for 2018. The auditor is careful to ensure the funds are handled properly. The RCW is ambiguous. The funds have not been used in many years.

Commissioner Hover stated he has to take the auditor’s advice on the issue. It would be good for county departments to apply for the Grant and utilize it. He said Engineer Thomson inquired and found out Public Works is considered a separate entity.

Distribution of the $5.00 recording fee, collected per RCW 36.22.170, was discussed. $2.00 goes to the state archive and is distributed to the counties accordingly. It is not known how much of that comes back. Whatever that is goes to the MARC fund. Auditor explained what she has been doing with the funds is to primarily digitize and scan all the old books in the auditor’s office and then send the original books off to archives. There are a few left to do. In the past money was provided to and others to preserve old files. This year both the Clerk ($20,000) and Treasurer ($10,000) asked for funds. Commissioner Hover said departments should know they can ask her for use of the funds for their preservation projects. There is one line in MARC for professional services and if there isn’t enough budgeted there, she asks them to wait until the following year. Commissioners Hover just wants everyone with a need for preserving documents to be able to use the funds for their preservation needs. Departments must work with the Auditor in order

Ms. Craig explained the Grant application has three types of application with up to $45,000 available. Auditor Thomas said if the county applies for the grant we should take care of the Clerk’s office first. Commissioner Hover stated the county has no grant writer to write the grant. Ms. Hall said the application is very simple and a grant writer should not be necessary. Commissioner Hover asked if a temporary employee could be hired to file and scan for the several departments that have a need. The grant is a reimbursable grant and preservation work must be completed within 14 months by May 9, 2019. Reimbursement would be submitted at that time.

Commissioner Branch asked if the county had a grant policy and whether it spoke to how handle the application. Yes, the policy requires departments to receive commissioners’ approval on all new grant applications.

Commissioner Hover asked the Clerk of the Board to work with the Clerk’s office to help them apply for the grant and then to help the Clerk manage it if awarded.

Motion - Voucher Approval - Commissioners
Vouchers certified and audited by the Auditing Officer as required by RCW 42.24.080 and those expense reimbursement claims certified as required by RCW 42.24.090 have been recorded on a list, and made available to the Board. As of this date, the Board did vote, by unanimous vote, to approve the regular vouchers in the amount of $826,184.02. Warrant numbers as cited on the attached blanket voucher list. Motion seconded and carried.

Motion Public Health Voucher
Commissioner Hover moved to approve the Public Health Vouchers in the amount of $8,117.98 Warrant numbers as cited on the attached blanket voucher list. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.

Review Meeting Minutes
Commissioners reviewed meeting minutes.

The board adjourned at 5:00 p.m.