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LEC Rent Revisited

By Staff | Nov 6, 2015

The Board of County Commissioners met Tuesday morning with Rugby Ward 1 Councilman Neil Lotvedt to discuss a new figure for the city of Rugby’s portion of the Law Enforcement Center rent.

At a previous city council meeting, Commission members recommended the city add $14,200 per year in rental fees. Lotvedt said that with the city taxpayers contributing $26,500 for dispatchers, the 10 mills for the LEC ($81,000) and with city property taxes expected to increase, his “personal opinion” was that the city paying $14,200 when the N.D. Bureau of Criminal Investigation and the N.D. Highway Patrol pay $1,000 apiece for their spaces is “unfair.” Lotvedt presented a figure of $2,000 per year based on the square footage of space the Rugby Police Department uses at the LEC.

District 5 Commissioner Dave Migler said that when (then Ward 4 Councilman) Arland Geiszler was the head of the Joint LEC Board, an agreement was put in place that would allow for rental rates to be put in. The board also explained that mill levies the LEC had in previous years, with the exception of capital improvements, would no longer be in place with changes in N.D. Senate Bill 2144, and that dispatcher costs would be coming out of the county’s general fund starting in 2016.

Pierce County States’ Attorney Galen Mack said he was “100 percent” in favor of keeping the combined law enforcement structure in place, and added that “equities” of having such a structure rather than the tax need to be looked at. Mack also said the county has been asking for an increase in payment for dispatcher services for years and hasn’t received any.

Lotvedt recommended the county do a study of counties like Pierce that have 24/7 dispatcher services in addition to cities with 24/7 police coverage.

“We need to have all the facts,” Lotvedt said.

OTHER ACTIONS

Heart of America Correctional & Treatment Center Administrator Mike Graner informed the board that the facility is housing 20 male Department of Corrections inmates with more on the way; October saw 112 inmates; boarding contracts are up for renewal; and CBM Foods, the jail’s meal service provider, is requesting an increase in meals from $1.41 to $1.56 per meal.

Sheriff Josh Siegler informed the board that the department received a total of 49 calls: 3 medical, 4 fire, 2 traffic accidents, 7 assist calls. In the month of October four prisoner transports were conducted, there were five arrests, 10 citations, 19 papers and four warrants served.

The board approved an agreement with the Heart of America Medical Center that would allow the county to levy an annual tax for county emergency medical services.

The board authorized 2016 projects scheduled for Federal Aid.

The board approved an approach permit for North Dakota Pipeline Company, LLC in section 26, township 157 N, range 73 west.

The board approved a transfer of $100,000 from the Highway Distribution fund to the Road & Bridge fund.

The board approved the October minutes, bills, financial statements and treasurer’s checks.

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