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County Commission approves liquor license transfer, fireworks display permit, and SRO position

The Lincoln County Commission met Tuesday, April 23 in the Lincoln County Boardroom. Commissioners heard agenda items including a public hearing, employee handbook updates, and a new SRO position.

The first order of business was read by Deputy Auditor, Cristen Standley for a public hearing to consider an application for the transfer of a Retail (On sale) Liquor License to operate outside a municipality from Canton Barn to Tyler Tjeerdsma of Loft Hospitality Group, Inc., at Lot A and M.k. Tract 1, an addition in the E ½ of the SE ½ of the SE ¼ of Section 11, T98n, R49W. Tjeerdsma was present at the meeting to answer any questions the commission had on the subject. 

“We plan to continue to run the Canton Barn as Tim and Kelly did in the past as a wedding and event venue, no change in business practices,” he said. 

With no questions from the commissioners, the motion was approved.

Emergency Management Coordinator, Harold Timmerman requested board action to approve a fireworks public display permit application from Mark J. Foster. 

“I would ask for approval pending weather conditions like high wind or fire danger and Mark knows this, he works with Harrisburg Fire to have a truck out there while he does this,” Timmerman said. Motion approved.

Human Resources Director, Traci Humphrey joined the meeting for board action to approve employee handbook updates.

“In the facts and vetting, I go over some key changes including language changes to reflect our new software, general language changes, specifically when it comes to grammatical errors, general reading as well as using more Federal Labor Law language rather than what we had created ourselves. The last one is also clarification on policy, we made some changes at the beginning of the year to do employee anniversaries at the time of anniversary dates, so we wanted to clarify what is an anniversary date and also make sure that we note that in the handbook,” she said. Motion approved. 

Humphrey next requested board action to approve safety manual updates. 

“The Safety Committee and I have been meeting since I started here, they were meeting prior to that as well, and we found that our officially approved safety manual hasn’t been updated for several years. There was one made in 2022, but it was never brought in front of you. The Safety Committee and I reviewed that and we’re asking for your formal approval to have this updated one,” she said. Motion approved.

Sheriff Steve Swenson joined the meeting for board action to approve the purchase of a 2024 Chevrolet Silverado to replace a damaged 2020 Dodge. 

“We had a Dodge Durango damaged in a car crash that was not our fault. In my opinion, the vehicle is totaled, it has $19,000 worth of damage which State Farm has issued us a check for. We can either fix it, it has 146,000 miles on it, so it’s my opinion that we don’t fix it and apply this to a replacement vehicle,” he said. 

Karl’s Auto Group has a 2024 Chevy Pursuit Silverado in stock for $50,116. Commissioner Poppins asked if the $50,000 price tag would be a benchmark for vehicle prices moving forward. “Yes, they’ve quit making the Dodge Charger, which was a fairly reasonably priced vehicle, but the Durango’s are $44,000, but the reason I’m asking for the pickup, just for the record is, they’re in stock and we have three on order right now and they have been since September of last year,” he responded. Motion approved.

Sheriff Swenson also requested board action to approve an agreement with the City of Harrisburg for police services. “We’ve been working with the City of Harrisburg on an SRO position for the South Middle School. The issue is we have one SRO for the Harrisburg School District and that’s just the schools in the City of Harrisburg including the one over by Baker’s Crossing, he’s trying to police 3,000 kids and be their mentor, it just can’t be done, so we’ve asked the City of Harrisburg to support us hiring an SRO. They pay 70 percent, which is the school year and they’ve tentatively agreed to that, so I want to see where the Commission would be at adding that position. It would cost us nothing in 2024 because we put that person in place at the beginning of this school year and next year 30 percent of the cost of a deputy and we’re going to need to add a deputy next year anyhow,” he said. Motion approved.

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