County can't sell license bureauA decision that would affect the lives of seven families in Douglas County has been postponed. Douglas County commissioners will review discontinuation of the license bureau service at their next meeting on December 11.
By: Crystal Dey, Alexandria Echo Press
A decision that would affect the lives of seven families in Douglas County has been postponed. Douglas County commissioners will review discontinuation of the license bureau service at their next meeting on December 11.
New information has been presented that commissioners would like to look into further before making any decisions.
If the county wishes to discontinue the appointment of the license bureau deputy registrar, a letter of discontinuation needs to be sent to the state and control of the service reverts to the commissioner of public safety. The county is not permitted to sell the business.
The state will decide if the area will be allowed a license bureau. The city would be offered the opportunity to run the bureau and then the potential for a private business would be awarded.
PLANS FOR THE LANDS
Parks Superintendent Al Lieffort along with Hoisington Koegler Group, Inc. (HKGI) team members met with commissioners to begin a four-phase plan to improve on the Douglas County parks and trail systems.
HKGI will begin with an assessment based on community input gathered from a focus group planned for January. A framework will be developed from this feedback.
HKGI will be paid $35,000 for the plan. Blue Cross Blue Shield will contribute $20,000, and cost to the county will be $15,000.
“Active Living will be a critical part of this,” Lieffort said.
One focus of the plan will be on the economic impact on the community. HKGI said that locations close to trails have higher property values. Users of the trail also eat, lodge and shop in the area.
“We need to have places for people to recreate,” said Commissioner Bev Bales. “Not everybody can live on a lake, not everybody can have a big yard or live on a farm.”
HGKI asked commissioners what they would like to see included in the plan. Commissioners Jerry Johnson and Dan Olson said they would like to see the Kensington ski area, Andes Tower Hills, connected to the trail. Commissioner-elect Jim Stratton inquired on city involvement. Lieffort said there are key city personnel involved in the process.
Douglas County commissioners approved plans to maintain the Lake Oscar outlet and repairs to two county ditches.
The Lake Oscar Outlet Operation Plan restricts flow to the existing 18-inch tile when floods are occurring downstream. If water levels in Lake Oscar exceed the outlet elevation of 1,379.5 feet, water may be allowed to flow through the 30-inch culvert.
County ditch 13 in Millerville is clogged and holding back water. It will cost approximately $3,650 to clean. Repairs to the main ditch and branches are currently being completed. Tile on county ditch 23 in Ida Township will be replaced next year. The estimated cost to replace the tile is $26,000.
Drainage and Ag Inspector Tom Anderson presented the board with an estimated assessment for legal drainage systems resulting in more than $124,609 in tax generated revenue on 2013 special assessments.
COUNTY HEALTH INSURANCE
Commissioners approved an increase in the insurance rates for employees. A single monthly premium paid by the employer will be $542. Family rates under the $300/$900 deductible plan is $1,227 monthly; $630 employer paid, $597 employee responsibility.
The county picks up 53.5 percent on the family premium increase. The premiums are a 14.24 percent increase over 2012 rates.