Published On: Thu, Nov 21st, 2013

Commissioners set policy for county burials

The Pierce County Board of Commissioners met Tuesday, Nov. 12, and took action on county burials and discussed the sale of used machinery and a new or used road grader.

The board discussed cremation costs and regular burial costs for county burials. After an extensive research from other counties, the board found that most counties use cremation and some counties do nothing. Board members reported that they had talked to the two morticians in the county and found they preferred cremation.

As a result of the findings, the board adopted a motion to approve Resolution 2013-21 to change the county burial policy to read cremation only, for a maximum fee of $2,435 paid to the county morticians.

After discussion on what to do with the used 1995 Caterpillar excavator (backhoe), the board authorized County Clerk Shannon Wragge to advertise for the sale of the used backhoe, a 1994 Ford Fairlane pickup and a 1983 Drott excavator. Bids for all of the used machinery will be opened on Dec. 9 at 9:30 a.m.

The board also instructed Wragge to advertise for a new or used motor grader with less than 2,000 hours on it with trade-in of a Caterpillar motor grader.

Bruce Zimmerman and sons Ryan and Aaron came to the board to ask Commissioner Terry Wragge to pull the shoulders in on 849 Road west from 546 Avenue and, if the road holds, they asked that crushed concrete or gravel be put on the road.

Wragge agreed to pull the shoulders in, but would give no commitment to put gravel on the road. Wragge said they would look at the road in the spring of 2014 and then make a decision on what to do. Wragge said that because the road is pure sand, he does not believe anything would help, except hauling clay onto the road. That option, said Wragge, would be very expensive, as clay would have to be purchased and hauled in from a long distance.

County Treasurer Chris Bahr came to the board with Certification of Distress Warrants. Wragge said distress warrants numbers are up to 41, which is greater than last year. She said, dollar-wise, it amounts to approximately $37,000 this year as opposed to $25,000 last year.

Wragge explained that distress warrants are delinquent personal property taxes that are uncollectable by the treasurer. She said the warrants are then turned over to the county sheriff for collection. If the warrants are not paid, the sheriff can seize the personal property in question and sell it to satisfy the warrant.

In other business, the board:

— met in Board of Equalization session with Assessor Peggy Wragge with no action taken.

— approved holidays, meetings and claim payment dates for 2014.

— appointed Charles Hoffmann of Pierce and Larry Schafer of Plainview to the Pierce County Planning Commission and also appointed Delford Kroeger of Plainview to the Pierce County Board of Adjustments.

— approved the underground crossing for Lyle Lingenfelter for a natural gas line in Part SW¼ of 7-25-1.

— approved an underground crossing for Roger Tacey for an electrical line on Part SW¼ of 5-27-2.

— approved an underground crossing for Knievel’s, Inc. for an electrical line in Part NW¼ of 7-25-2.

— approved county burial application No. 2013-3.

— discussed replacement of rooftop and heating units on the courthouse roof and approved hallway Option 1 and Option 2 for a total of approximately $8,000.