Get Adobe Flash player



BE IT REMEMBERED, that the White County Commissioners held a regular meeting on December 3, 2007, at 8:00 a.m., in the White County Courthouse, 2nd floor, Commissioners’ conference room.

Commissioners’ present was: President John C. Heimlich, Vice President Steve Burton and Board Member Ron Schmierer. Also present was the White County Attorney George Loy, White County Auditor Jill Guingrich, and the Commissioners’ Assistant Donya Tirpak.

Commissioner Heimlich called the meeting to order.


  • Commissioner Burton made a motion to approve the minutes as presented fro the regular meeting on November 19, 2007, seconded by Commissioner Schmierer. Vote: Unanimous


  • Commissioner Burton made a motion to approve the payroll for December 3, 2007, as presented, seconded by Commissioner Schmierer. Vote: Unanimous


  • Commissioner Schmierer made a motion to approve and pay the claims as advertised for December 3, 2007, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous


Commissioner Heimlich said that the Holiday Schedule for 2008 has already been approved for the Courthouse and the Highway Dept. In the past the Recycling Department has always followed the Highway Department and today Dawn wanted to talk to the Commissioners about it.

Dawn Girard, Recycling Director, appeared before the Commissioners saying that before she started with the department she was told that they use have the same holidays as the courthouse and about three years ago they were switched to the highway’s schedule.

Comparing the two schedules, she said that the courthouse gets an extra holiday on the election years and the highway dept. takes Lincoln’s Birthday off whereas the courthouse doesn’t. She said that the Sheriff and Health depts. take off the same as the courthouse.

Dawn said that the Recycling Department services the public like the Sheriff, Health and Courthouse and when a notice is in the paper that the courthouse is closed the public tends to think that her department is closed as well.

This is why she is presenting to the Commissioners to allow the Recycling Department to follow the same holiday schedule as the courthouse.

Commissioner Heimlich presented minutes from 1999-2000where a discussion was held with the Commissioners about longevity and payroll issues and at that time the Council voted that the Recycling Dept. be treated the same as the Highway Dept.

Commissioner Schmierer and Commissioner Heimlich said that they never knew that the Recycling Dept. was the same as the Courthouse.

Commissioner Schmierer said that he felt that this was something that really doesn’t even need to be worried about and he felt that it should be left alone the way that it is. He said that the Recycling Dept. should continue to stay with the Highway Dept.

The Commissioners said that the Recycling Departments 2008 Holiday Schedule will remain the same at the Highway Depts.


Margie Michalski, 5271 E. Willow Court, Monticello, said that she owns property (northwest of the Krintz’s garden patch,) adjacent from the Lakeview Home. Between the two properties she said there is a ravine and she would like to purchase a small section of that ravine from the county so she could have access to take a golf cart down to the lake.

Mrs. Michalski said that her husband’s health is not good and they have two flights of stairs to get down to the lake. She would like to be able to use the land for him to have access.

The Commissioner discussed whether or not you could obtain access to the lake from the ravine. Mrs. Michalski said that she does not want to change anything down there but she would have to clean it up a little bit to get the golf cart down there.

White County Attorney George Loy explained that if the county would sell her the land then they would have to go through a process of having it appraised and then putting it out for bid to the public.

Commissioner Schmierer asked if the county could grant her an encroachment to allow her to take the golf cart down there. Attorney Loy said that the county could grant her an easement but then you’re dealing with liability issues.

The Commissioners said that they will go out there and take a look and see what might work the best.


Gwynn Rusinek, Office Manager for the Health Department, appeared requesting permission, once again, to “bridge” money over from the Tobacco Master Settlement account to pay for the Public Health Coordinator’s position. Gwynn also presented a letter from the State authorizing her to do this with the funds.

Commissioner Heimlich asked about a letter that came in last week detailing a change in the Public Health Coordinator’s position.

Gwynn explained that the letter received from the State last week stated that the “deliverables” do not have to be done now by a certain date.

Commissioner Schmierer said that when he read the letter from the State he understood it to say that you have to perform the “deliverable” before you can receive any money.

Mr. Ed Gutwein explained that this grant is still a “deliverable-based grant. After you get deliverable one done and it is approved by the State, then you get approved.

Commissioner Schmierer said that he has no doubt that Mr. Gutwein can get the deliverables done; he said he’s just afraid that the State will find some error and won’t pay the county for it. He hates to have someone go out to work and the county extends the pay out and then the county can’t get it back. In the years that Mr. Gutwein has been employed, Commissioner Schmierer said that none of his salary has been paid with county money, it’s all been paid with the grant. This is the way he intends for it to stay.

Even though the State sent a letter saying that it was okay to bridge (borrow) the funds, Commissioner Burton said that he does not want to put the county in exposure and if the State decides to change the grant ($45,000) the county can’t repay it.

Mr. Ed Gutwein discussed the last Commissioners meeting where discussion was made on making a new contract where the position would be payable on approval of the deliverable. This will remove the county from being at risk.

The Commissioners agreed that this would be a lot easier. They asked Mr. Gutwein to get a copy of a contract from other counties (Clinton) that are paying their employees this way. Mr. Gutwein said that he will get the contracts.


Terry Beasy, Manager, appeared before the Commissioners to update them on the status of the bio-diesel project at Liberty Landfill.

He explained that there have been some severe changes in the economics associated with the plant. He said that the economics of alternate fuel are upside down with prices right now. He said that several small producers in the Iowa area have already filed bankruptcy. The project, for now, is on hold until the economics of the project become more favorable.


Commissioner Heimlich said that from the beginning the goal of the Commissioners were to have every employee (eligible) on the single health insurance plan rather than on a dual plan. All employees are now on the HRA insurance plan and no one has signed up for the buy-up- plan.

Commissioner Heimlich said that Amy Carpenter had asked him how he was going to handle new hires. Since the new hires will be in the HRA group and they start their position in the middle of the year, is the county going to prorate the amount of money that the county puts into their HRA account. So the question was, do we prorate the amount for 6 months or do we give them the full amount for 12 months.

Commissioner Schmierer said that he didn’t think that the county has a choice other then to prorate it.

  • Commissioner Schmierer made a motion to cancel out the dual medical plan since every employee is enrolled in the HRA medical plan and discontinue the buy-up-plan, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous

  • Commissioner Schmierer made a motion that the amount that is put into a new hire’s HRA is prorated, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous


Emergency Management Director Gordy Cochran saying that the State sent out some paperwork last week saying that they want the counties to now adopt an ordinance specifying what the duties are for the EMA and his powers.

This is something that will need to be addressed after the first of the year.


  • Commissioner Schmierer made a motion to appoint Dave Diener to the Wage Board Hearing for a Twin Lakes School Project, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous

There being no further business to come before the board, their meeting was adjourned.

_____________________________ _____________________________ _____________________________

John C. Heimlich, President Steve Burton, Vice President Ron Schmierer, Member

ATTEST: _____________________________

White County Auditor Jill Guingrich