The Taylor County Board of Supervisors met in regular session at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday, March 16, 2023.
Supervisor Fitzgerald called the meeting to order. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited. Supervisor roll call: Fitzgerald, Watson, Beggs, all present. Also present: Corey Leftwich, Josh Good, Rob Welch, Gareth Stauffer, Jared Hershberger, and Justin Savage.
Watson motioned to approve the minutes from March 9th and March 14th with amendments, as well as approve the agenda for today’s meeting. Beggs seconded. MC 3-0.
There were no committee meetings to report on.
Welch gave updates in public comments about progress being made regarding the windmills.
Savage advised the Board there are no utility permits to present. He discussed the Agrivision driveway entrances and how it relates to County liability with the culverts currently in place. Options such as adding a guardrail to reduce liability were discussed, as well as potentially extending the box culvert. The Board advised they are not in favor of building a retaining wall or utilizing a guardrail, but that they would like to see the box culvert extended.
Savage presented the Contractor’s Performance Bond for project FM-C087(70)—55-87 for the pavement marking project. Beggs motioned to approve the Contractor’s Performance Bond as presented. Watson seconded. MC 3-0.
Savage requested the Board approve a moratorium to allow the County time to develop an ordinance for battery storage as well as for solar energy. He recommended these be standalone ordinances that allow them to be utilized with other projects such as wind and ensure that appropriate safety measures are taken. Clint Spurrier joined the meeting to answer questions about a potential moratorium. Spurrier advised that the most appropriate route would be to create an ordinance related to those topics, but that a moratorium may be available to discuss and potentially approve at the next regularly scheduled meeting. Spurrier left the meeting.
Fitzgerald presented a complaint he received to the Board regarding the field entrance near 110th, east of Garden Avenue being damaged. Savage advised he will research the concern. Savage left the meeting. Cole Walters joined the meeting.
Walters presented the Invitation to Qualify grant to the Board. He advised that SICOG has determined an unserved and underserved area to request to be served by the grant, which would allow companies to bid on providing internet service to those communities. Watson motioned to approve Taylor County’s participation in the Invitation to Qualify grant as presented. Beggs seconded. MC 3-0. Walters left the meeting.
Leftwich presented the Dissemination Agent Agreement to the Board, which allows Northland Securities to continue filing annual financial statements for the Law Enforcement Center Bond to the appropriate agencies. Beggs motioned to approve the agreement as presented. Watson seconded. MC 3-0.
Leftwich presented the previously discussed pay raise for the Deputy Auditor, Holly Cavin, with the Board. Since Holly had reached the end of her probationary period, it was recommended that her pay be adjusted to match that of the other deputies in the Courthouse. Watson motioned to approve her pay raise to $45,082.90 annually. Beggs seconded. MC 3-0.
Beggs motioned to go into closed session under Iowa Code 20.17(3) to discuss Sheriff’s Union negotiations and arbitration, with Josh Good present for technical support. Watson seconded. MC 3-0.
The Board returned from closed session to review and approve claims to be paid. Justin Savage joined the meeting.
The Board discussed budgets for FY24. After discussion on ways to reduce the budget, the Board advised they would like to see what the levy rates would be with wages reflecting the following: 4.5% for Courthouse employees, a cost-of-living increase of 3.5% for Secondary Roads, an increase of $2,000 then a 4.5% raise to the Attorney’s Secretary, and a $2,500 increase then a 5% raise to the Sheriff. The Board agreed to reconvene to discuss budgets next week.
The Board discussed canceling the 28E agreement via Resolution 2023-11, that made possible Taylor County’s participation in Workforce. Since Workforce is being dismantled, Beggs motioned to approve Resolution 2023-11 as stated. Watson seconded. MC 3-0.
The Board reviewed topics for discussion in future meetings. Beggs motioned to adjourn the meeting. Watson seconded. MC 3-0.
Ronald Fitzgerald, Chairman, Board of Supervisors
Corey Leftwich, Auditor