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Crow Wing County Board approves fee changes

Fee changes were approved by the Crow Wing County Board Tuesday, including changes to the sheriff department’s firing range.

The changes were approved after a public hearing. There were no changes in general fees. The changes were in geographic information systems (GIS) and the sheriff’s department.

In GIS, changes removed black and white maps and color maps were separated into aerial and parcel. Changes reduced the cost on 6-inch and 12-inch digital color images that look like photographs but have distortions, such as camera tilt or topography removed. The images may be used as maps. A 9-inch image option was added. For example, costs decreased for a 2010 12-inch digital section image from $75 to $50. A 22-inch by 34-inch aerial map decreased from $23 to $13.

Land Services added a $100 stormwater permit fee where one had not previously existed. It also raised the fee for a letter noting the absence of a wetland from $100 to $250 as a way to match the private sector and not compete with for-profit businesses by charging a lower fee. In 2012, the county provided the service for five landowners.

An increase in the E911 address fee brought it from $55 to $74. The county reported the fee hadn’t changed since 1999 and the updated cost covers a replacement sign and maintenance. This year, the county reported it replaced 30 signs and installed 221 new ones. The county also instituted a fee of $100 per application plus $25 per lot for minor subdivisons that split land into three lots for fewer that are less than 10 acres in size.

For the sheriff, changes to jail fees were reported to be minimal with the increase to cover the cost of court-ordered drug and alcohol urinalysis. Other changes related to the civil process, the sheriff’s department reported the increases are related to the rise in fuel and staffing costs. A deputy standby charge for more than a half-hour is a new fee at $60 per hour. Other fees, such as service of civil process, went to $75, for a $5 increase or more.

The other change removed a $375 fee to use the firing range. This change had commissioners looking for more details in a previous meeting. Sheriff Todd Dahl said they haven’t been charging the fee since 2010 as the other agencies they work with, such as the law enforcement program at the Central Lakes College, provided targets and the Brainerd police and fire departments provided use of training rooms.

Dahl said the county would like to take the lead by providing some annual certifications and instructors because it’s in the best interest of law enforcement and that will be provided at a minimal fee such as $50 per person.

Other fees remained unchanged, and range from a $5 computer recycling fee at the landfill to a $2,450 fee for a combination on/off and Sunday liquor license.

In other business, the board:

Approved a resolution for the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to buy the last land parcel of 117 acres in the Little Nokasippi River Wildlife Management Area (WMA) by Fort Ripley. Gary Drotts, area DNR wildlife manager, said there was a request by the Fort Ripley city and township for a directed sale of a parcel south of the cemetery to allow egress for funeral processions. The smaller parcel was not included in the WMA but Drotts said they are trying to see if a sale or donation may work as part of the process.

Commissioner Phil Trusty took the opportunity to thank Drotts for his work with the city and townships to keep people informed. In turn, Drotts thanked the board for its support of the Mississippi Northwoods project by French Rapids near the Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport. Drotts said he can’t emphasize enough how proud he was to be a resident of the state and county and that project wouldn’t have been possible without county assistance. “It’s a great asset,” Drotts said, adding he was happy to be part of it.

Approved a new on-sale and Sunday liquor license application for JCI Investments doing business as Hassies.

Approved right-of-way acquisition for reconstruction of County Highway 3 from Highway 37 to Highway 1 and as needed for the bridge replacement on Daggett Brook on Highway 23.

Reappointed Gary Griffin, Land Services supervisor, with the authority and duties of the county assessor for a four-year term starting in 2013.

Authorized a public hearing to consider a land exchange with the county getting 40 acres in Ross Lake Township for 40 acres in Nokay Lake Township, allowing the county to consolidate public land.

Met in closed session for labor negotiations. The board later announced an agreement for a two-year contract to move a bargaining unit to performance-based pay with a 15 percent reduction in minimum pay rates and a 2.5 increase in the maximum pay rates, a half-day on Christmas eve and a two-year pilot program to cash out up to one week of paid time off per year.

RENEE RICHARDSON, senior reporter, may be reached at 855-5852 or Follow on Twitter at

Renee Richardson
Richardson is a Pacelli High School graduate from Austin, Minn., who earned an applied science degree from the University of Minnesota, Waseca, with an emphasis in horse management. She worked extensively in the resort industry. She received an associate’s degree from Central Lakes College, where she was editor of the Westbank Journal student newspaper, as well as a summer intern at the Dispatch. She graduated from St. Cloud State University summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in mass communications and interned at the St. Cloud Times covering business while attending SCSU. She's been with the Brainerd Dispatch since 1996.
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