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            The Board of County Commissioners met in special session at 12:00 noon at Park View Assisted Living with all members present.


            The meeting was called to meet with the City Council and consultants John Pinegar and Doug Smith. The consultants presented the Heavy Rail Improvement Strategic Plan they did for Grant and Stanton County and the City of Ulysses. Following the presentation, the commissioners moved to their meeting room at the courthouse.


Following further discussion with John Pinegar and Doug Smith, Carl Higgs made the motion that Grant, Stanton, Morton and Stevens County initiate discussions to consider establishing a regional economic development effort looking at a number of issues including railroad infrastructure.  Marty Long seconded the motion and it passed unanimously. Mr. Pinegar commended Tom Fuhrmann, Appraiser, and Linda McHenry, County Clerk, for their prompt assistance when information was requested from them during development of the plan.


            Lance Babcock, Sheriff, and Don Button, Emergency Management Coordinator, presented vehicle quotes for the commissioners’ consideration. Marty Long made the motion to approve the purchase of a Ford F150 truck for the Sheriff’s Department at a cost not to exceed $23,879.43 and a Ford Expedition for Emergency Management at a cost not to exceed $22,441.19. Carl Higgs seconded the motion and it passed unanimously. The vehicles are being purchased through the State’s Partner Program.


            J.D. Neufeld, Civic Center Manager, received approval to purchase a new computer if he has adequate money in his budget. The commissioners also approved an additional $400 charge for new Formica for the splash board around the sink in the kitchen at the Civic Center.


            The decision was made to go with a three-month run-out period for health insurance claims incurred by county employees through December 31, 2006.


            The sheriff and county clerk met with the commissioners. Compensation of elected officials was reviewed and wage adjustments were talked about to bring elected officials closer to appointed department head wages and to bring them more in line with other elected officials across the state. Wage adjustments were not made in 2006 as was discussed so this will be a 2-year adjustment. Marty Long made the motion to give the Sheriff a 9.29% increase, the Clerk a 10.27% increase, and the Register of Deeds a 12.71% increase. Carl Higgs seconded the motion and it passed unanimously.


            The commissioners adjourned to meet again in regular session on January 2, 2007.


Linda McHenry, County Clerk                          Madison Traster, Chairman