Job 1 for County Board: Fill two positions
The Goodhue County Board spent part of its meeting May 7 in Kenyon talking about filling two positions: Veterans Service director and District 1 commissioner.
The board meets one a year in Kenyon so political science students of former Commissioner Dan Rechtzigel may attend as part of the school day.
Veterans service director
Lyman "Robby" Robinson resigned as Veterans Service Office director after being placed on leave on April 23 due to a complaint. Robinson left the office that day and has not returned, but officially his last day was May 2.
According to a document created by County Administrator Scott Arneson, the Veterans Service director "also acts as the county's legislative liaison, is in charge of risk management and serves as the department head for the county Extension Office."
Arneson explained in the Tuesday meeting that the specific duties of the position moving forward may vary based on who is hired.
"I think when the person's hired we'll look at the skill set. Somethings may make sense to stay there, somethings may not."
The main focus of the job is serving veterans. This means that candidates must be veterans themselves, according to state regulations.
Gross salary for this position is set at $75,400 for the new director. This is subject to change.
The opening will be posted soon.
Commissioner Ron Allen died on April 19, creating a vacancy in the District 1 seat. Allen's term would have expired Dec. 31, 2020, and Scott Safe was a temporary appointment while Allen was on medical leave.
Brian Anderson, the county's finance director and head of the county's election process explained: "Being the length of this unexpired term is more than one year, the Goodhue County Board is requested to set a special election to fill the vacancy."
The Legislature has set limits on when primary and general elections can take place. The county currently plans to hold a special primary election on Tuesday, Nov. 5, and the special general election on Tuesday, Feb. 11.
If two or fewer candidates file for the position, a primary election will not be needed and the special general election will be held on Nov. 5.
Councilmembers stressed that the election has to be later this year or early 2020 because of all of the steps required to hold an election. Anderson presented a list of 34 special election dates that must be met for an election to be official. These include:
• Opening candidate filing 84 days before the primary. (Filing will run Aug. 13-27 in this case.)
• Appointing the absentee ballot board members 47 days before the election.
• Distributing election day materials to cities and townships the Monday before the election.
District 1 includes Welch Township and the western half of Red Wing.
Bridges and culverts construction
Goodhue County's public works director Greg Isakson presented bids received for the Cannon Valley Trail bridge replacement and rehabilitation contract. According to the background presented by Isakson to the board, this project will consist of the replacement of three bridges and the rehabilitation of a fourth. ICON Constructors, Inc. was awarded the bid with a $1,123,553.25 bid amount. This is .40 percent% over the county's estimate.
The board unanimously accepted ICON's bid.
The next matter of business was accepting a bid to replace twelve corrugated metal centerline culverts in the county.
Isakson and the board were surprised that the three bids the county received all quoted a price that is 16.58% or more than the county's estimated total. Fitzgerald Excavating and Trucking, Inc., bid $235,532.50 (16.58% over the estimate) and was accepted by the board.