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Cass County Board: Board named final authority for Pine River sanitary district

WALKER – Cass County Board approved changes to the Pine River Area Sanitary District By-laws Tuesday, setting the county board as final authority to appoint sanitary board members and setting pay for those members.

The new provisions call for the local government units to recommend and the county board to appoint anyone filling a vacancy created on the sanitary board by the death of a member or removal or resignation from the sanitary board.

The county board authorizes each sanitary board member to be paid $130 per month and mileage reimbursement at the federal law rate. The chair shall be paid $140 per month.

Further, all sanitary board members shall be paid $75 per special meeting attended and $20 for each week of on-call duty.

Based on a recommendation from Barclay Township, the county board appointed Marvin F. Ryan to represent that township on the sanitary board.

Recorder Katie Norby reported her office collected $559,319.85 in fees during 2011 from recording of abstracts, torrens and UCC documents, down from $579,890.97 in 2010. The highest fee collections in the last 17 years were in 2006 at $737,530.07.

The largest number of abstracts recorded were 18,080 in 2003. The largest number of torrens were 1,528, also in 2003. The largest number of UCC documents were the 1,400 filed in 1996.

Norby obtained board approval to purchase a record book scanner, hydraulic table, computer, monitor and portable computer stand for up to $48,000. The recorder’s office expects to scan 300 old record books into digital format with this machine.

Sheriff Tom Burch obtained board approval to host a regional Motorola training for emergency service personnel on the new radio program. The $5,400 cost will be reimbursed by the Regional Radio Board.

Cass County’s sentence to serve program had 25 male participants the fourth quarter of 2011. The men worked 1,792 hours, completing an estimated $13,850 worth of work. They paid off $2,890 worth of fines the court ordered against them by doing this work.

Their services were for county, city and non-profit entities.

In all of 2011, 127 men worked 6,112 hours on sentence to serve and paid off $12,305 worth of fines by their work.

The Eddy Foundation donated $1,000 to the sheriff’s recreation fund. Marjorie M. Frank donated $10 to the boat and water safety program.

The county board approved a 2012 renewal contract with Medical Examiner Michael B. McGee at a $250 monthly salary. In addition the county will pay $2,000 per complete autopsy with basic toxicology or $1,000 per external examination with basic toxicology.

Cost per hour, including travel time, for court related preparation, consultation and testimony in Cass County Court will be charged at $300 per hour.

Cass County must provide transportation for deceased bodies separately to the Ramsey County morgue where McGee is based. He does not provide those transportation services.

County Engineer David Enblom reported the county’s townships will receive $429,952 from state gas tax receipts in 2012. This is a $27,974 increase over the 2010 allotment.

Land Commissioner Joshua Stevenson reported the county sold $207,797.79 worth of timber from county land at a January auction. Aspen sold for $20.45 per cord. Red pine saw logs sold for $45.76 per thousand board feet.

Due to the failure of many roads to freeze enough for getting equipment to and hauling logs out of logging sites this winter, the county board approved a plan Stevenson presented to allow loggers to extend their permits, but with the requirement that they pay an extension fee.

Cass County will not require the balance due on the sale to be paid in full before an extension can be purchased for qualified sales. All sales that qualified for a winter extension require payment in full before any cutting begins.

The board approved paying the annual $37,500 contribution to Cass County Economic Development Corporation and half of the $5,000 each allocation to the fairs at Pine River and Pillager. The balance of the fair payments will be made after July 1.