10 W Fallon Ave Baker, MT 59313
Fallon County of Montana

Commission Minutes – July 10 – July 14, 2023

Commission Minutes – July 10 – July 14, 2023

MONDAY, JULY 10, 2023


PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Kevin Braun and Roy Rost, Members; Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder


The Pledge of Allegiance was held in the Commissioner’s Office to start off the week.


          Andrea Koenigsfeld-Expressed her concerns regarding the Golf Course. Andrea catches a lot of flak from the public regarding the grounds and feels some more changes need to be made. Andrea asked when the greens were going to be open, if there was a date. Commissioner Braun stated the Superintendent was instructed a couple of weeks ago to open as many as could be opened. Andrea wondered about using a portion of some of the greens. Noticed #7 must still have a leak. In Andrea’s opinion, all of the greens could be opened. Andrea also hears complaints regarding the roughs. They are spraying for mosquitos; Andrea was told the Superintendent was given briquettes to use as well.  It is felt he must not be using them because he would have been asking for more. Andrea stated she is in hopes the greens will be open for the Art DeGrand Memorial which will be held July 29th.

9:20 AM Andrea left the meeting.


Commissioner Braun made the motion to approve the June, 2023 Payroll and Withholdings in the amount of $660,155.14. Commissioner Rost seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for any other discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.


          Melissa excused herself as she is busy getting set up for an event.  Would like permission to hire Gabriel Kennel as the Seasonal Museum Aide.

Commissioner Braun made the motion to hire Gabriel Kennel as Seasonal Museum Aide. Commissioner Baldwin seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for further discussion; being none. 2 Ayes. 0 Nays. 1 Recused. (Commissioner Rost).  The motion carried.

9:47 AM PERMISSION TO RECRUIT LIBRARY TECHNICIAN/Beth Meggers, Director of Library Services; Julie Straub, HRM

     Would like permission to recruit a Library Technician. Commissioner Baldwin asked if this position was needed. Beth stated yes, it would only leave two of them in the library. Julie stated this is for a 30 hour per week position. Sienna will still be there, but Alivia will leave in August. Commissioner Baldwin asked if there is enough work to keep them busy. Beth responded, yes.

Commissioner Braun made the motion to recruit a Library Technician. Commissioner Rost seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for any discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously. 

9:50 AM Beth left the meeting.

          Planning Department-Placing a sign on the door to the Planning Office was discussed.

9:55 AM Julie left the meeting.

10:00 AM ROAD/SHOP UPDATES/Bobby Wiedmer, Road Superintendent; Mitch Overn and Carl Overland, Shop Mechanics

         Road/Shop Updates/Bobby left a message they will not be in because they are chip sealing and running short handed today.

10:26 AM Richard Menger, Sanitarian joined.

         Updates-Rich stated Baker Lake is down by about one (1) foot. This will help the wetlands areas. The lake is getting a lot of use.

10:30 AM PROJECT UPDATES/Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering                                                             

     1.Planning Items-Floodplain matter-Discussed landowner property west of Baker. Shannon stated they need to fill out a permit; and it will then need to be advertised for 3 weeks to comply with the National Flood Insurance Program. Discussed the floodplain map update with DNRC-Will need to contact them and find out where the DNRC is at with that. Upper and Lower Dam inspections-Shannon will do the one (1) year dam inspections. Relayed the lake is down about one (1) foot; no water will be added to the lower lake now.

          Discussed the mitigation study for the lake through FAA funding. Mary noted the Airport board needs to conduct the study. Shannon found information in the Planning Board Staff Report dated February 5, 2019. #3 in the Findings of Fact states the Zoning Administrator is not a wildlife expert. Given the location of the airport and this project in relation to the existing large water bodies (Baker Lake and the Baker Lake Watershed Reservoir), it would appear that the minimal increase in water surface area resulting from this project would not have an appreciable impact on the number or frequency of birds within the area covered by the AAA Regulations. A post construction study should be prepared to affirm this position and provide the assurances necessary to protect existing and future FAA grant funding for the Baker Airport. Commission could ask Roger if Craig has completed the study.

10:45 AM Rich left the meeting.

     2.Discuss/Decision Parking Lot Quotes/Two (2) quotes were received for FMC Parking lots/Wyrick Construction and Top Gun.

          Wyrick-Will mill and overlay on south lot and large reconstruction on north lot.

          Top Gun-Mill out and overlay-No base or reconstruction in their bid but they have included seal coat and restripe. Shannon will need to talk to David Espeland, CEO-FMC to correlate the parking lot and fuel tank maintenance projects.

10:55 AM Steve Zachmann, Mayor-City of Baker and Melissa Foster, FWP joined.

Shannon will need to review the quotes and ask further questions before making the recommendation to award.

10:57 AM Nic Eisele, Undersheriff joined.

Jon Paulson, Surveyor for Brosz is out flying the drone at Thielen’s today. The landowners have been contacted so are aware. Connor Beach gravel pit comps came back and are really close to specs; they would need to add some binder if required.

10:59 AM Justin LaCroix, Chief of Police-City of Baker joined.

11:00 AM Richard Menger, Sanitarian joined.

Commissioner Braun discussed the possibility of a gravel pit at Stark’s. Shannon stated the Road Superintendent could use the backhoe to do some test holes.

11:03 AM Shannon’s meeting was concluded.


          Melissa stated this is the 2nd positive CWD test of a mule deer; found on the south edge of Baker. There have been questions from the Public regarding how to proceed. CWD is always fatal and can be found in the meat. This can be transmitted in all ways and CWD remains viable for long periods of time. The animal does not always show signs of the disease; to date there have been no known human cases. The CDC makes the recommendation not to consume until it has been tested. They recommend getting tested no matter the appearance; test results are slow. They say to allow two (2) weeks for results and are very busy toward end of season, but they do the best they can. Disposal is recommended in a class 2 landfill because they are buried right away. Question-Can you treat the carcass, so it is less infected? Melissa stated, no; they like to have it buried so no scavengers get to it and spread the disease.  Maps were provided, viewed and discussed.  Melissa thanked all agencies for the support received throughout this process. Question-What should hunters do with carcasses until the test comes back?  Freeze it or process it and keep it separate from other meat; it is a learning curve. At this time the next step is to try to cull a few more; they have cut doe tags this year because the population is down. Melissa discussed management and people feel FWP is too heavy handed in this process. They hope this becomes a community effort.

          Melissa asked if anyone had any thoughts. Rich asked what the highest form of transmission is. Melissa responded, direct contact. Question-Do mothers always transmit to the offspring? Melissa does not know if they know that. Nic stated both of these cases have been calls of service. The Sheriff’s Office will take the calls of service but will not be part of the culling because they field a lot of calls pertaining to culling. The Sheriff’s Office is a proponent of education.

          Commissioner Braun asked about setting up testing sites. Melissa stated yes, they will; people can call or text her. Question-Will the State of Montana send some assistance. Melissa stated, no, not unless it gets out of hand. Rich stated he has not seen any with any signs. They want to educate residents/public. Melissa stated they have discussed doing a workshop on how to gut them.

11:27 AM Darcy Wassmann, County Attorney joined.

          Justin recommends visiting with landowners south of town and get the word out. News releases, Facebook and leaving information in local businesses was discussed.  Melissa again stated she really appreciates the support and help.

11:30 AM everyone left the meeting, except Darcy.

11:30 AM PUBLIC COMMENT – COMMUNITY FOOD FOREST GARDEN – DECISION REGARDING LOCATION ON COUNTY LAND/Lacey Berg, Community Food Forest Garden Organizer; Vaughn Zenko, SMART/EMEDA Executive Director; Darcy Wassmann, County Attorney; Steve Zachmann, Mayor-City of Baker

          The City of Baker had an agreement prepared for the city land Lacey had planned to use earlier. A copy of this agreement was sent to Darcy this morning to use as a guideline. Darcy has not had time to review it. Discussed the need to start planting; Darcy feels she can start planting as long as everyone is fine with that. Lacey would like permission to make the 911 call and permission to start planting. Permission was granted. The land will be leased to EMEDA, and the agreement will be between Lacy and EMEDA.  It is felt a 5-year renewable agreement would be best.  Discussed contacting the adjoining landowners so they are aware.  Discussed placement of a waterline; Lacey can get grant funding for the waterline at a later date.   

Commissioner Braun made the motion to sign the agreement leasing County Land to EMEDA and gave Darcy permission to complete the agreement.  Commissioner Rost seconded the motion. Commissioner Baldwin asked for discussion.  Legal Description is Block 2-Lake Addition in Section 13-7-59 per COS#82067. Commissioner Baldwin asked for further discussion; being none.  3 Ayes. 0 Nays.  The motion carried unanimously.

11:43 AM Lacey and Vaughn, Steve Z. and Darcy left the meeting.

11:46 AM Commissioner Rost made the motion to recess. Commissioner Braun seconded the motion.

Commissioner Baldwin asked for any other discussion; being none.  3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

          NOON RECESS

PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Kevin Braun, Member; Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder




          Richard Sparks phoned in and will send a letter of engagement for an appraisal of the Westmore property owned by Fallon County.

          Lisa Rieger, Dept of Revenue/Lisa wanted to remind the Commission of the meeting tomorrow night from 4-7 PM at the Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall.

1:30 PM SHOOTING RANGE UPDATES/Jim Leischner, Shooting Range Member

          1.Discuss/Decision plan for Range Manager/Shooting Match Supervisor Absence/Julie Straub, HRM

       Jim and Shane will both be gone August 7th and 8th. Jim would like to ask if Carl Overland can oversee the Shooting Range while they are gone.  Chances are he will not have to be there but if someone is needed, it would be great if Carl could assist. Carl is also a Board Member and knows all pertinent information. 

1:36 PM Commissioner Rost rejoined.

Julie explained Carl is a full-time Road employee and if needed at the Gun Range, the practice has always been, the employee would be paid their normal wage. Carl would complete a separate time sheet, notating that information. This will also need to be discussed with Bobby Wiedmer, Road Superintendent.

1:42 PM Julie left the meeting.

           UPDATES/There was a match held this past weekend at the Shooting Range and it was well attended.

1:44 PM Beth Meggers, Director of Library Services joined.


     The quote is for FY24 propane rate/for county use in those buildings currently using propane. Quotes were received from Plevna Propane and Prairie Fuels.

Prairie Fuels-$1.19 per gallon and includes remote monitoring, with auto refill.

Plevna Propane: $1.30 per gallon, up to 15,000 gallons, purchases above 15,000 gallons would be at the current market value.

Commissioner Braun made the motion to accept the bid from Prairie Fuels at $1.19 per gallon for FY24 (July 1, 2023 through June 30, 2024) to include remote monitoring and auto refill. Commissioner Rost seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for any discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

2:00 PM Jim left the meeting.

2:00 PM LIBRARY BUDGET MEETING/Beth Mueller, Director of Library Services

          Discussed various budget line items and whether to increase or decrease based on the past few years.

2:17 PM Beth left the budget meeting.

2:18 PM DISCUSS/DECISION TO WRITE OFF TAXES/OTHER UDPATES/Barbara E. Ketterling, Treasurer/Assessor

         Updates/Barb told the Young’s to contact the neighboring landowner to see if they were possibly interested in purchasing the land.  The Commission is not willing to forgive the taxes; they need to be paid. 

         Other properties will be discussed with the County Attorney.

2:30 PM Barb and Julie left the meeting.

2:45 PM Planning Department/Forrest Sanderson, Peaks Planning was phoned regarding the Red Butte Campground and the timeframes that need to be followed. Forrest stated a sufficiency review needs to be completed and a response submitted to the company working on the plan for the landowner, by Monday the 17th of July. The plan will be electronically submitted to Forrest ASAP. 

2:58 PM Forrest hung up the phone.


Commissioner Rost made the motion to approve the June, 2023 end of month claims in the amount of $490,347.39. Commissioner Braun seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for any discussion; being none.  3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.


          The Commission reviewed revenues received, reports, emails and other correspondence, board minutes and agendas.

1.Old Business (as needed)

          a.Moving Wells Fargo Trust to Bank of Baker (any decisions needed)

             We continue to wait to hear back from Wells Fargo Bank

          b.Hospital basement maintenance (any decisions needed)

             No further decisions have been made as of this time.

          c.Chamber of Commerce MOU for Recreation Department Services

             The County Attorney is working on this.

          d.EMS Medical Director (decisions as needed)

             This will be removed as Darryl Espeland agreed to remain the EMS Medical Director as long as needed.

          e.Decisions EMS billing practices/rates  

            No further discussion at this time.  

          f.Decisions regarding weapons policy

            No further discussion at this time.

          g.Approval of Fair Contracts (as needed)

              No contracts received this week.

Rental Agreement

The Commission signed a rental agreement for Parkview Apartment #220.


3.Review& Approve Encroachment Permits (as needed)

4.Review Board Minutes/Agendas (Boards other than Commission)

5.Review Department/office reports/sign journal vouchers (as needed)

6.Executive/Action items:

          a.Permission for EMS Program Manager to purchase desk from FY24 budget

             Permission granted to purchase the desk.

          b.Review Ambulance Specs/Decision to prepare to go to bid

              The Commission will contact someone for assistance.

          c.Permission for Public Health to purchase airline tickets to attend training in Missoula (using COVID funding)

             Permission was granted, using COVID funding and scholarship funding to pay for 1 employees’ room while attending mandatory training.  The costs were weighed heavily by the Director of Public Health, and it was found to be less costly because there would be less nights in a motel and less meals.  The Commission agreed there will be no further airline tickets purchased for future training.

          d. Approve Standard Lease between the State of Montana and Fallon County for Department of Revenue Rent

             Due to an error on the lease, it will be placed on the agenda again next week.

          e.Discuss DOT INFRA Grant for railroad crossing assistance

             This was sent to the EPEDC.

          f.Discuss/possible decision LATCF use of funding

             No decision was made.

          g.Sign MT Stockgrowers Predator Control MOU-FY24

              The decision was to put $15,000 toward predator control for the Stockgrowers. This was signed and will be returned.

          h.Sign MT Woolgrowers Predator Control MOU-FY24

              This was signed and will be returned.

          i.Attendance/Decision MACo annual conference

            Commissioner Braun and Commissioner Rost plan to attend the MACo conference in September.

         j. Approve/Sign Certificate of Final Acceptance for the General Aviation Fuel System

             This was signed and will be sent to the appropriate parties.

          k.Approve/Sign EBMS out of network changes to ELAP (ELAP provides repricing & assistance with balance billing for out of network providers)

              This was signed and will be sent to EBMS.

          l.Appoint applicant to the Library Board

Commissioner Rost made the motion to appoint Rebbeca LaCroix to the Library Board.  Commissioner Braun seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for any discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

         m.Approve quote for concrete project at Parkview

             *Note-Others were asked to submit quotes and no other quotes were received.

Commissioner Braun made the motion to accept the quote from Franks Arcs and Sparks for concrete job at Parkview in the amount of $8,200. Commissioner Rost seconded the motion. Commissioner Baldwin asked for any discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

         n.Approve and sign 3- year Standard Audit Contract and letter of engagement with Olness & Associates, PC

         The 3-year Standard Audit Contract and letter of engagement were signed and sent to Olness & Associates, PC.

4:27 PM Commissioner Braun made the motion to recess.  Commissioner Rost seconded the motion. Commissioner Baldwin asked for any other discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.


TUESDAY, JULY 11, 2023


PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Kevin Braun and Roy Rost, Members; Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder



          Dale Butori, DES/911 Coordinator met to get permission to purchase chairs for Dispatch. The chairs qualify for and will be paid for using ARPA funding.  Permission was granted.

9:15AM OUTSIDE MAINTENANCE UPDATES/Robbie Christiaens, O. Maintenance Supervisor; Derrick deHaan, O. Maintenance Assistant

          UPDATES/Continue to have issues with the Splash Park. Rain Drop (Splash Park Company that bid the project) has been less than helpful. If they cannot find the issue, they may have to turn them on and off manually. They and the crew are scraping and painting areas in need. Discussed a leak in the city park; they are asking for assistance from Robbie. Derrick stated there are more residents in Parkview and spends about 30% of his time there. Discussed placement of handicap signs at Iron Horse Park, will not paint will place metal signs. Weeds have been sprayed where necessary. They are getting quotes for various cement maintenance projects. Derrick would like to rock the front of the Museum; the Road Department would get the rock and Derrick feels the rock could come from the Maintenance budget. Discussed the parking lots at FMC will be receiving some maintenance and will be coordinating the propane fuel tank maintenance with that project as well. 

9:35 AM Robbie and Derrick left the meeting.

9:35 AM EMS PROGRAM MANAGER UPDATES/Brittany Renner, EMS Program Manager

          UPDATES-July 29th John Carlbom is bringing a class to Baker, and they will do a large emergency scenario. Brittany would like permission to have the Fallon County Times come and take some pictures. The Commission granted permission to purchase a desk from the FY24 EMS budget and to have the Fallon County Times take pictures while the scenario takes place.

The Commission discussed getting some assistance from Dale Butori, DES/911 Coordinator with the Ambulance specs. The classes are going very well. The Commission thanked Brittany for all of her efforts.

9:50 AM Brittany left the meeting.

9:51 AM Commissioner Braun would like to give Derrick deHaan an increase in wage.  This will be discussed further.

10:15 AM Commission Minutes approval week of June 26-29, 2023

          Last week’s minutes were not approved at this time; more time was needed to review.

Closed Session Commission Minutes Approval – June 26, 2023

Commissioner Braun made the motion to approve the Closed Session minutes from June 26, 2023.  Commissioner Rost seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for any discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

10:30 AM MUSEUM UPDATES/Melissa Rost, Museum Curator

          UPDATES/May-Finished up preschool programming; BHS CSI case was centered around the 1944 explosion at the Scheuffele Station; First graders came and did their dinosaur lesson; 3rd and 5th grade scavenger hunt; Plevna Kindergarten did a birthday party for Steer Montana; Melissa did a presentation and tour for the Homemakers Spring Council; they were closed 6 extra days due to no help; June-Heritage Fest-brought many activities and was well attended (460); MAM Board meeting in Lewistown; Daycare fieldtrip; summer reading for older and younger kids; closed 5 days due to no help; July-Grade 3-6 art camp; Grade K-2 art camp; Art show on Saturday; Transfer Water Works collection to Ekalaka; Home Waters STEM Camp; Mission to the Moon STEM camp; Rachel Rost helped organize and prep (50 hours); finished the reporting and submitted the videos for the oral history project; closed 3 days due to no help; August-Historical Society plans to take Steer Montana to the fairgrounds one day during the fair; Curt Williams working on the Lions Club Yellowstone Coach in hopes it is functional for the Fair Parade. Presented her numbers for google performance inclusive of website visits, searches, etc.

10:53 AM Melissa left the meeting.


        OFFICE HOUR DISCUSSION/Discussed the total differences, (per the spreadsheet provided by the Clerk and Recorder) would be approximately $8,811.57. Anna plans to ask the City of Baker for hours for Monday and Tuesday office hours as well. Wednesday is the only day she is not going to change.

        Anna has cut the budget quite a bit since she came on board.  She does not feel it is extreme, it is reasonable and is something they need to work towards. This allows more hours for the public and staff to prepare for court.  Commissioner Baldwin asked what her opinion was if the workload were to decrease.  Anna feels it should be full-time; she feels Justice Court should be open all hours.  Anna stated the Commission has the authority to set office hours.  Anna cannot leave town without having someone on call.  Commissioner Braun stated she would still need someone when she leaves town. Anna agreed. Question-When Anna goes to the City of Baker is she going to ask for 2 hours?  Anna stated 2 hours for herself and Teresa and 1 for Jill. Discussed the Sheriff coming before Justice Court more than before because they are not getting things done in District Court. Anna has no control over that.  Commissioner Braun stated, then that overloads her court creating pressure. Anna stated it would not be more pressure if the court was full time like it should be. Anna is trying to take baby steps to justify her request. Commissioner Baldwin asked about the case load.  Anna stated full time may happen anyway, if the JP’s go before the legislature. Discussed changing them to a court of record and what that would entail. 

          Anna encourages the Commission to allow these hours and she will keep her budget reasonable as always. Anna stated they deal with more in JP Court and wants to stay focused on Justice of Peace. Commissioner Braun would like to ask the County Attorney some questions and stated he is disappointed in the District Court side and also has taxpayer concerns.  Anna stated she has been here three (3) times and made note of the Commission’s next meeting discussing funding. Commissioner Braun stated he would still like to visit with the County Attorney, and they could make a decision tomorrow under old business. Commissioner Braun is thinking about the city hours as well.

11:16 AM Anna left the meeting.

11:30 AM SET UP TRAVELING EMT PROGRAM-DISCUSSION/DECISION/Brittany Renner, EMS Program Manager; John Carlbom, Whiteline Consulting

          John discussed the traveling EMT program and stated we are struggling like other EMT services. With the traveling EMT service, we could use them if we get into a bind but would not have to use them. Would be able to do more transfers, which brings in more income; there would be more help around the station, etc. Brittany feels this would be a cost savings over the service we are using currently. Brittany would like to be in charge of the interviews, etc. Discussed housing would be the con side.

          John has been assisting with inspections and just found a piece of equipment (in all ambulances) that has not been serviced and doesn’t know how long it has been like that. Made him wonder what has been being done all this time. Everyone needs to be responsible for checking equipment, restocking, cleaning, etc.  The job is not over after you come back from the call no matter what time it is. Equipment needs to be inspected to make sure it is operational; items need to be replaced when expired, etc.

          Discussed the traveling EMT program could be utilized after the 1st of October, due to the contract we already have in place. Discussed last minute scheduling; there would be a pool of people to choose from; scheduling and calendars were discussed.  Brittany will prepare the new month’s calendar toward the end of the month. John provided pay and other items offered to traveling EMT’s, from other services. John stated they always have to clean, stock, check everything over after each trip, this is a mini-ER. Commissioner Braun stated the graduating class needs to be visible to the public. John stated the traveling EMTS’s could be used long or short term.

11:50 PM Brittany and John left the meeting.

11:51 AM Commissioner Rost made the motion to recess.  Commissioner Baldwin seconded the motion. Commissioner Baldwin asked for any other discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.

          NOON RECESS

PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Kevin Braun and Roy Rost, Members; Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder



           Kim Bryan, Director of Public Health brought the schedule and costs for the upcoming mandatory training they have to attend.  Kim explained it was less costly to do the flight than to travel by car. Commissioner Braun explained, even if it is paid with COVID funds it is still taxpayer dollars and the county cars are supposed to be used for county employees to attend training. It is the perception to the Public that is concerning. Kim explained she did her research and does not do things willy-nilly.  The commission stated when they make decisions, they set precedence. Kim stated this is a mandatory training and they could forgo the training and lose the grant that pays her wages.  The Commission stated that is not necessary; expressed the Commission does not fly when they attend meetings across the state.

          Kim asked about dust control on road into her house and on county roads. The Commission stated they do not do dust control.

1:25 PM Kim left Public Comment.

1:30 PM SMART/EMEDA UPDATES/Vaughn Zenko, SMART EMEDA Executive Director

          SMART UPDATES/Discussed the Food Forest; county needs; 3 applications were received for the Grid United grant and were able to fund them somewhat. SMART currently only has time to fund raise; they need another employee; this person would be located and would man the Visitor Center. Discussed the amount of funding that has been brought forth through SMART is significant compared to the past.

          They have a landscaper working on the pocket park and received funding for the roof at the Old Baker State Bank building. Vaughn stated, it appears as though SMART receives all of the monies but there is a match for those grants. The Red Ants Pants received a $5,000 Women in Blue Jeans grant.  This is a photographic essay of women in agriculture. When he has all the pictures they will do an exhibit, some will be displayed at the visitor center and the full exhibit will go to the Museum.  They plan to finish this next March in time for Ag Week. They had over 385 attendees, over four (4) nights for the 1st Community play. They made $21,000 less expenses of $9,000. Discussed the many hours of rehearsals and the good feedback that was received. SMART started a digital project in which individuals can bring old VHS movies, etc. to be digitized; this will be completed as a free will donation. They are currently working on an old high school band concert. Discussed any assistance the county could provide since they need another employee if they are going to continue to assist with grants and other projects. Commissioner Rost asked if their budget had been reviewed. It was discussed this budget has remained the same for the last several years. Discussed putting some figures together for the budget to be reviewed before the Commission.

          Port Authority-EMEDA-Vaughn asked the reason for rejecting the mill levy request. Discussed it was felt doing this through the petition process would be best. Vaughn stated their attorneys told them they cannot do it through the petition process for a mill levy. The Commission was concerned about bringing it before the public for 15 years. Vaughn will readjust the request and get more clarity before bringing it before the Commission again. EMEDA feels they will proceed with modular and place them on the land donated to them. Head start sent them a letter and would like to be up and running by October. Census numbers indicate there are 235 youth ages 0-5 in Fallon County.

1:59 PM Vaughn left the meeting.

2:00 PM AUDIO/VIDEO RECORDING DEMONSTRATION/Josh Lewis, System Administrator; Alexander Nwadike & Chad Swason, AV Capture ALL; Commissioners Baldwin, Braun and Rost; Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder attended the demonstration. 

         The group feels this software would work well for us and appears to be user friendly. Josh has not contacted any other companies; the Commission feels it is not necessary.  Installation and training will be discussed at a later date.

Commissioner Braun made the motion to recess after attending the DOR meeting.  Commissioner Rost seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for any discussion; being none.  3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.





PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Kevin Braun and Roy Rost Members; Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder



           No one appeared for Public Comment.

9:30 AM EPEDC UPDATES/Terra Burman, Executive Director

          Terra discussed the Lakeview Drive Storm Drain grant.  The person they have been working with is out of the office so not sure when the grant funding will be received.  Terra is still in the learning process of her new position.  Terra asked if Melissa Rost had gotten permission to be on the Visit SE Montana Board. The Commission will keep her informed and will need to make the determination if this will be on her own time or whether it will be done through her Museum Curator position. Discussed grant needs; cannot really think of anything. Brenda sent her information regarding an overpass for the railroad, which was received from David Turch’s office. Discussed the upcoming final wetland mitigation report for the EPA. They received funding for an EDA fellowship internship for an individual to work on infrastructure grants. It is a two (2) year program and would focus on our area. EPEDC has a FADC position open, it is part time (20 hours per week). GNDC helps pay for the wages. Terra should be here every Wednesday and Lizzy should be here every other Thursday. Discussed collaborating with Vaughn, SMART/EMEDA. 

9:36 AM Terra left the meeting.

9:39 AM Kimberley Jensen, AP Clerk met to inform the Commission the In-State meal rates changed April 11, 2023, from $30.50 to $33.50 per day.  We normally receive notification when they change. Kimberly was looking to see if they changed in July but that was not the case. Kimberly wanted to know if the Commission wants her to compensate the employees from April 11th to the current date.  The decision was to compensate the employees even if it is less than $1.00. 

9:54 AM Rich Menger, Sanitarian joined.

          UPDATE/Rich changed out the 1st chlorine bottle for the golf course irrigation system. Rich feels 3 bottles should get us through an entire season, if not, it will be very close.

9:58 AM Rich left after his update.

10:00 AM FMC UPDATES/David Espeland, CEO; Marjorie Losing, CFO

            UPDATES/Marjorie presented the financials and stated May was a better month.  Marjorie also reviewed the FY24 budget. The Commission stated they will be completing portions of the FMC parking lots in the near future and have informed Shannon Hewson, Brosz Engineering, he will need to coordinate with the generator fuel system project.  David stated they will need to carefully plan the parking lot maintenance due to tenants and staff parking.

10:48 AM David and Marjorie left the meeting.


10:57 AM Commissioner Rost made the motion to approve the June 26-29, 2023, minutes. Commissioner Braun seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for any discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously. 


          1.Decision regarding Planner Administrative Assistant cell phone/Kimberly Jensen, AP Clerk

             Kimberly explained if we disconnect the cell phone 978-8111 from the Planning Department, we will lose that number (which coincides with the office phone number).  The Commission made the decision to disconnect the phone as of this time.

11:02 AM Steve Zachmann-Mayor and Kevin Dukart, City Clerk – City of Baker joined.

          2.Discuss/Decision City of Baker Planning Interlocal – Monthly Planning Board/Staff payment

             Discussed trying to get someone in the interim for items that have a time constraint for completion. They will wait to see if the county gets a planner and see what happens after that regarding a possible interlocal agreement between the City and County. For now, the County plans to ask Forrest Sanderson, Peaks Planning to contract plan in the interim. Steve Z stated the city may use Brosz Engineering for any GIS work.

          The decision was made to remove the Planning billing portion from the City of Baker monthly billing.

11:12 AM Steve Z and Kevin D left the meeting.

11:15 AM Commissioner Rost made the motion to recess. Commissioner Braun seconded the motion.  Commissioner Baldwin asked for any discussion; being none. 3 Ayes.  0 Nays.  The motion carried unanimously.

             NOON RECESS

PRESENT: Steve Baldwin, Chairman; Kevin Braun and Roy Rost, Members; Brenda Wood, Clerk and Recorder



           1.Budget meeting/Discussed accounting for possible upcoming legal issues for the county. Darcy increased her #390 to allow for office staff wages, supplies, office space, etc.

            Planning Department-Darcy reviewed the KLJ contract and discussed completing a termination letter, for planning, to be sent to KLJ. They would like Darcy to review the contract for Peaks Planning so the County is able to use their services in the interim. Darcy will try to have it all completed by Monday the 17th.

           Justice Court Hours-The Commission asked about the request to increase hours for Justice Court staff.  Darcy stated the Justice of Peace case load is just as busy as District Court. It is hard to get things scheduled.

           2.Chamber/Fallon County MOU for Recreation Services

              The Commission asked for a draft and asked that there not be a determined amount included. They want to support them (with funding), only if needed.

           3.County Land Title Search/Westmore/Cindy Irgens, Recording Clerk/

              Cindy discussed the Westmore properties and a few Commissioner Deeds that are not on record. The Commission feels it is in the County’s best interest to sell.  They have inquired about an appraisal and will be receiving a contract to sign for that. Darcy discussed waiting to order a title search until the appraisal is received.

           4.COS -180 days of completion for survey date/Cindy Irgens, Recording Clerk/

               Cindy asked what date to use per Statute; sometimes the surveyor signs more than 180 days prior to anyone else. Darcy will check into that.

          5.Speed Limit on coral creek road-move forward with the process.

              The Commission has had a member of the Public ask about this process for the Coral Creek Road. Darcy will look into the process. The Commission would like to move forward after that process is known.

          6. Whiteline Consulting training agreement/

               Darcy is going to look at making this agreement a little more formal

          7. Townsend Computers agreement/

               Darcy has received this agreement and will complete a final review for signing.

Other Outstanding Business

           8.Roads-October 1st is when the law pertaining to gates across a public road goes into effect. The Commission is also looking into a policy/permit system.  Darcy stresses the need for a good policy.

           9. Weapons Policy-Commissioner Baldwin discussed the legalities for a weapons policy for the safety of employees needs to be looked into. 

2:00 PM Darcy left the meeting.


          UPDATES-Irrigation system-They received 30 sprinkler heads and may have to change out more.  They have been cleaning and salvaging parts from them as well. Drag mat-The mat came in and finished using it on the greens, plus they have been seeded and sanded.

          Greens-The Commission asked if the greens can be opened. Kevin’s opinion is no but phoned Dave Solga. Dave was here last week, and they were not ready then; he feels it would be two (2) more months before they would be ready.  Mid-August may be too soon as well and feels September would be better. Discussed the tournament scheduled for the end of July and the Commission was asked if the greens would be open for that tournament.  The recommendation from David Solga, Kevin H and Doug would be no because they don’t want to set them back.  Kevin H recommends the Commission visit with Doug and go from there.

          Filter-The cost is $16,000 for the filter; discussed checking into the cap that may break when pulling it out rather than replacing the filter.

          Other-Sand was delivered yesterday.  Commissioner Braun asked if Kevin knew how much water was being put on. Kevin stated 1/10th of an inch per green.   Commissioner Rost asked if the weather changes the amount of water Kevin disperses. Kevin feels they are putting enough water on the greens. They are being watered 10 minutes, 2 times per day. Commissioner Braun stated we want to know how much water is being dispersed per square foot. Commissioner Rost stated that is information that will be needed. Commissioner Braun asked if they would be placing isolation valves this year before blowing down the system. Kevin stated they will be doing that this fall. Discussed parts for reels that are obsolete; Kevin would like to move the old reels to the old mower and put new reels on the green’s mower.  The Commission granted permission to order the reels.  Discussed needing a quote for the greens tarps and the plastic end for the filtration system.  The Commission discussed mowing the roughs.  Kevin stated they will be mowed next week; wants to get the greens and fairways in shape and will continue to work on the roughs.

2:50 PM-Kevin H left the meeting.

2:52 PM Julie Straub, HRM joined.

         Decision on Employee Assistance Program-The commission made the decision to approve the EAP program.  Disaster/Emergency Policy-The Commission is still looking through it.

3:00 PM-Julie left the meeting.

3:04 PM Commissioner Braun made the motion to adjourn. Commissioner Rost seconded the motion. Commissioner Baldwin asked for any other discussion; being none. 3 Ayes. 0 Nays. The motion carried unanimously.


ATTEST:                                                                                            s/Steve Baldwin, Chairman

s/Brenda J. Wood, Clerk and Recorder