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County hires first HR director

Douglas County has hired a human resource director, a newly designed position for the county.

At a special board meeting Friday, Feb. 16, the Douglas County Commissioners approved hiring Lee Katzmarek as the new director.

Heather Schlangen, county coordinator, requested permission to hire the new director, who will work within the county coordinator's office, at an annual salary of $78,270 plus a starting vacation bank of 40 hours.

The commissioners took action to create the position at the Jan. 16 regular meeting.

In other action

Also at the special board meeting Friday afternoon, without any questions, comments or reasons given, the commissioners approved a notice of intent to not reappoint Josh Brummond as the county's Veterans Service Officer. The resolution stated that Brummond would not be reappointed to a second term.

In addition, the board reviewed and approved a separation agreement between the county and Brummond.

When contacted by the Echo Press for further information, Chairman Owen Miller said he could not comment. Brummond was also contacted and declined comment.

Area veterans have expressed dissatisfaction with the Veterans Service Office and its volunteer driver program. At a September board meeting, commissioners discontinued a $40 stipend for volunteers who drive veterans to their appointments at Veterans Affairs clinics in St. Cloud, Minneapolis and Fargo.

The county commissioners and a group of veterans have been working together toward a resolution and were to meet during a workshop at the Tuesday, Feb. 20 county board meeting.

Celeste Edenloff

Celeste is a reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press and has lived in the Alexandria Lakes Area since 1997. She first worked for the Echo Press as a reporter from 1999 to 2011, and returned in June 2016 to report on the community she calls home. Besides writing articles for the Echo Press, she has a blog, “Newspaper Girl on the Run.” Celeste is on a continuous healthy living journey and loves to teach bootcamp fitness classes and run. She has participated in more than 200 races with her husband, Al, covering the 5K, 10K, 10-mile and half-marathon (13.1 mile) distances.

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