Board approves buying GPS gear

NEW ULM – Brown County commissioners unanimously approved a resolution Tuesday to buy Watonwan County’s half of GPS (Global Positioning System) survey equipment the two counties bought in 2010 and shared since that time.

The two county boards bought and shared $15,757 worth of GPS equipment three years ago. It was used for surveying construction projects. It saved many staff hours by establishing benchmarks and allowing one-person surveying, ac.

Watonwan County recently proposed to buy its own GPS receiver and asked Brown County to buy its half of the shared equipment. The equipment was valued at $3,939.41, using an eight-year depreciation schedule on the original purchase price.

In other action, commissioners approved:

Buying a belly dump trailer from Boyer Ford, which was the low bidder, for the highway department, which already has a truck tractor to pull a low boy trailer and could be used to pull a belly dump trailer.

State bids and quotes for 42- and 40-foot trailers are $56,951 from RDO, $55,672 from Titan Machinery; $54,379 from Boyer Ford; and $55,720 from Nuss Truck & Equipment.

The trailer will be bought with funds not spent in the original budget from the last three years, $64,000 including $18,900 originally budgeted for a used belly dump. The trailer could pay for itself in two to three years.

The county highway committee looked into availability and cost of used trailers. It reported there are not many available, and the cost is more than half the amount of a new one.

Appointing commissioner Jim Berg to serve on the SHIP (Statewide Health Improvement Program) Community Leadership Team (CLT). The SHIP team requested one commissioner for each of four counties involved in the project be part of the CLT.

Approving a $17,514.80 final payment for County Ditch (CD) 5 clean out and tile outlet repair, northwest of Sleepy Eye in Prairieville Township. The project included cleaning out 58,580 feet of open ditch and repairing 20 tile outlets at a total cost of $84,296.

Approving a $9,208.60 final payment for CD 28 clean out and tile outlet repair. The project included cleaning out 36,810 feet of open ditch and repairing 10 tile outlets at a total project cost of $51,172.

Accepting the resignation of part-time facilities assistant Darcie Helget and increasing the position to a full-time job effective Jan. 3, 2014. The facilities manager requested the part-time position be increased from 25 to 40 hours a week to improve building maintenance because it has become more common for part-time employees to have more than one position.

Re-electing Commissioner Dennis Potter as 2014 chair and Commissioner Scott Windschitl as vice chair.

(Fritz Busch can be e-mailed at

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