If the coronavirus takes Crow Wing County’s snowplowing crew members off the roads, will the snow still be cleared this winter?
An agreement the county board approved Tuesday, Nov. 10, with two area construction companies aims to prevent a gap in services should county maintenance staff be unable to report to work. Anderson Brothers Construction Co. of Brainerd and Pillager-based Hengel Ready Mix and Construction both agreed to provide workers with Class A commercial driver’s licenses for emergency work if COVID-19 sidelines county employees.
In addition to providing snowplowing, these backup workers may also perform emergency road maintenance or repair or other services required to maintain the safety of county infrastructure, the agreements stated. The agreement requires the work be performed by qualified employees with enough skills, training, expertise or certification to perform the job in question.
The agreements extend through May 1, 2021, at which time the terms will be reviewed and modified if necessary. For Anderson Brothers, labor rates range from $38.89 per hour for a laborer to $51.65 per hour for a snowplow operator. The agreement with Hengel listed the cost of a snowplow operator at $75 per hour with the highest cost coming with heavy equipment operation at $150 per hour.
In other business Tuesday, the board:
Heard from Merrifield resident Troy Scheffler during open forum, who again appeared dressed as a clown. With him were two other men in costume who did not identify themselves. Scheffler shared his opinion on COVID-19 and one of his associates delivered papers to Chairman Steve Barrows that were described as a civil complaint.
The complaint, filed in U.S. District Court, alleges violations of the Drivers Privacy Protection Act, invasion of privacy, defamation, retaliation for exercising First Amendment rights, unlawful withholding of material data requested by Scheffler surrounding the prosecution of Nisswa Mayor Fred Heidmann and a Fourth Amendment violation involving unlawful search of Scheffler’s data. Defendants include Crow Wing County, Sheriff Scott Goddard and Capt. Joe Meyer.
Scheffler is seeking compensatory damages in excess of $75,000, punitive damages in excess of $75,000 and other relief.
Reappointed Craig Nathan to the Crow Wing County Housing and Residential Authority.
Accepted a grant from the state for community services to provide mental health screenings to eligible youths in the child welfare and juvenile justice systems. The board previously accepted a grant for 2020 totaling $45,609.
Authorized the county engineer to advertise for sealed bids for a number of road projects planned for 2021.
Authorized the county administrator to advertise for sealed bids until 10 a.m. Dec. 9 for all legal printing and publishing for Crow Wing County.
Accepted a $500 donation from American Legion Post No. 443 to Crow Wing County Veteran Services.
Scheduled a public hearing to consider adoption of the 2021 county fee schedules for 5:15 p.m. Dec. 15.
Approved a lawful gambling application for an exempt permit for the Garrison Bay Lake Area Lions Club for an event to occur May 15, 2021, at JJ’s Birds Nest in Garrison Township.
Approved replacement staffing for a property assessor in training because of a promotion.