After new officials were sworn in at the courtroom upstairs on Jan. 3, 2017, new Supervisor Terry Graham and the rest of the Fremont County Board of Supervisors met for the year’s first meeting in their office downstairs.
The first thing they needed to do was pass several resolutions to reorganize.  The Board chose Earl Hendrickson to act as Chairman of the Board, and Randy Hickey to act as Vice Chair.  Meetings will continue to be held on Tuesday mornings at 9 a.m., and the County newspapers will remain the same:  the Sidney Argus Herald and the Hamburg Reporter.  
Committee appointments were made as follows:
Hendrickson:  Tourism Board; Welcome Center Board; West Central Development; Landfill Commission; Local Emergency Response; Southwest Iowa Juvenile Emergency Services Board; Loess Hills Alliance; REAP Commission and County Safety Committee.
Hickey:  DECAT Board; DHS Service Advisory Board; Emergency Management Commission; Waubonsie Mental Health; Regional Planning Affiliate Board; Board of Health; Clarinda Mental Health Center Advisory Board and Workforce Development.
Graham:  Loess Hills Authority; Hungry Canyons Authority; Hungry Canyons Alliance; Southwest Iowa Transit; Southwest Iowa Planning Council; Fourth Judicial 28E Board; Zion Recovery Board; FREDCO Board and Local Emergency Response.
All three supervisors were also appointed to the E911 Board.
Fremont County Emergency Management Director Mike Crecelius appeared before the board to request a salary increase.  Crecelius said that the Emergency Management Commission met on Dec. 13, 2016 and came up with a budget amendment; Crecelius was there to present the amendment to the Auditor and the Supervisors.  
The change would raise Crecelius’ salary from $37,247 to $42,362 starting immediately and running through the end of this fiscal term.  With the new budget year in June of 2017, his salary would then go up to $47,476.  Crecelius said he had spoken with the previous County Attorney, Corey Becker, who suggested it was in the County’s best interests to agree to the  amended salary.  Hickey agreed, saying, “if we don’t raise his salary as suggested, he would be eligible for overtime.  If you think about another 2011, when he was working 12-18 hours a day every day, for six months, you can see how that would hurt.”
While in the meeting, Crecelius reminded the Supervisors of an upcoming meeting in Omaha on Feb. 14, in which the Army Corps of Engineers would be discussing their draft Missouri River Recovery Plan.  Crecelius hoped one or more of the supervisors would attend to look out for the County’s interests or at least be informed about the Plan, as Corps actions had taken the County unaware in 2011.
Harvey Moyer appeared before the board to talk about purchasing the Shirley property across from the Church and Fire Station in Percival.   Moyer was advised that there are $28,000 in back taxes outstanding on that property, $18,000 of which is penalties.  The board agreed it would be easiest for the County to publish notice and wait out the 90 days, then take deed to the property themselves.  Once they had the deed then a decision could be made regarding price, what, if any back taxes might be forgiven, and method of sale of the property.  This property has been standing empty for some time, and is quite dilapidated, and the board agreed it would be nice to be able to get the property back on the tax rolls.
The supervisors agreed to the purchase of a vehicle from the Sheriff’s Office for $11,500 for use by the County Sanitarian.  The Sheriff’s Office will pay the $11,500, and the County will reimburse that office from County Betterment Funds.  The old vehicle previously used by the Sanitarian will be sold.
In other business:
n the supervisors, Crecelius and Alexsis Stensland of SWIPCO will meet next Tuesday after the supervisors’ meeting to discuss the Hazard Mitigation Plan;
n the board approved the nomination of Dr. Tom Largen and Theresa Hardy to serve on the Board of Health again, and reorganization of that board will take place next week, and
n discussion of union negotiations with the Sheriff’s Office and Roads Department was tabled pending receipt of the minutes from the Dec. 27 Compensation Board meeting.
The board will meet again on Tuesday, Jan. 10 at 9 a.m.