Cass County Board: Board tackles 1st of year actions

WALKER--Cass County commissioners selected Scott Bruns to serve as 2019 board chair and Neal Gaalswyk as vice-chair at their Wednesday, Jan. 2, meeting in Walker.

Cass County courthouse in Walker, MN. Brainerd Dispatch file photo.

WALKER-Cass County commissioners selected Scott Bruns to serve as 2019 board chair and Neal Gaalswyk as vice-chair at their Wednesday, Jan. 2, meeting in Walker.

Commissioners Bruns and Gaalswyk, Sheriff Tom Burch, Recorder Katie Norby and County Attorney Ben Lindstrom, all re-elected officials, were sworn into office by Judge David Harrington. The county board approved its meeting rules of business, which set regular meetings for 9 a.m. the first Tuesday of each month at the courthouse in Walker and 9 a.m. the third Tuesday of each month at the land department building in Backus.

Exceptions will be made for the third Tuesday in May through September when the board will change the meeting time to 6 p.m. and will have meetings at various locations throughout the county. Sites for these meetings will be announced in the next month. All meetings are open to the public.

The county board will meet additionally at 2 p.m. June 10 at the courthouse in Walker for the state statute-set Board of Equalization meeting.

People wishing to appeal the value set on their property-from which taxes are computed -- must first appeal to their city or township board of adjustment before appealing to the county Board of Equalization.


Anyone who wishes to speak at a regular county board meeting must submit detailed information about their item to the county administrator one week prior to the meeting date to have it added as an agenda item.

People wishing to speak before the board, but not on the agenda must make known, before the agenda is approved at a meeting, they wish to speak during the citizen comment period.

Citizen comments have a three-minute limit.

The board set the mileage rate Tuesday at 58 cents per mile to match the IRS rate for employees and committee appointees who use their own vehicle when use of a private vehicle is authorized or a county car is not available. Reimbursement for use of a personal motorcycle is 55 cents per mile.

If an employee uses a personal vehicle when a county car is available, the reimbursement rate drops to 20 cents per mile.

Though it is rare that the county or a conference does not pre-pay airfare for a county official or employee to fly to a conference out of state, the county does reference the IRS rate of $1.26 per mile to reimburse for airplane costs if the person attending pays their own fare, according to Administrator Joshua Stevenson.

Cass County reimburses employees only with itemized receipts for meals outside the county at up to $20 per day.

The county reimburses with itemized receipts at up to $55 per day for meal and incidentals when overnight travel is involved in most of Minnesota. Higher meal and incidental expense rates involving overnight trips to the following counties are paid up to the following daily rates:


Olmsted, $61; Dakota, $71; St. Louis, Hennepin and Ramsey, $76.

Cass pays for lodging with itemized receipts for a night prior to and during an approved conference.

The board set dishonesty and faithful performance of duty bonds at $50,000 through Minnesota Counties Intergovernmental Trust for the following county officials: administrator, attorney, auditor-treasurer and deputies, county commissioners, county recorder and registrar of titles, highway engineer, sheriff, surveyor and health, human and veterans services director.

The Walker Pilot-Independent submitted the low bid to publish in 2019 the county's financial statement, delinquent tax list, expiration notice, board minute summaries and legal notices.

Pine Cone Press Citizen submitted the low bid to win the contract for second publications.

The five county commissioners, administrator, chief financial officer and county engineer will be Cass' 2019 delegates to the Association of Minnesota Counties. Each commissioner serves on a different AMC policy committee.

Cass' AMC dues in 2019 will be $15,223.

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