County agent will relocate to Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center

During the Harney County Court meeting on Nov. 21, David Bohnert, from Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center and Dustin Johnson and Shana Withee, OSU Extension agents, were present to discuss a cooperative project with Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, EOARC and OSU Extension.

The project would require the relocation of the Harney County Agriculture Agent to the Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center. The court was in support of this plan, seeing many benefits to the proposal. With the change, Johnson would be conducting research at the refuge one-third of his time.

The court felt this would be beneficial to agriculture in Harney County. The county extension office would remain at the courthouse.

The court heard a presentation from Bob Elvers, of Science & Management Consulting, on the fall grazing of cheatgrass. Elvers is a consultant to the Dean of Agriculture at the University of Nevada, Reno, and is conducting a major research project on this subject. The court agreed to write a letter in support of this continued research.

Harney County Road Supervisor Eric Drushella told the court that he is continuing to review the bids on the East Steens Road project. The court received an official protest regarding this project, and Drushella will discuss the issue with county counsel  and project engineers before awarding the bid.

Mike Howes, representing the Harney County Contractor Committee, was present with a proposal for the building development program, permitting program, plan review and inspections. The court will discuss the proposal and have another meeting with the group to decide what is best for the community.

One bid was received and opened for a sports utility vehicle for the Harney County Sheriff’s Department. The bid, from Burns Ford, Inc., was for a 2013 police-rated explorer, for $29,265.88. The bid was accepted.

Sheriff Glerup stated that he would like to prepare a fee schedule for civil services, for the court’s approval. He stated that his office will be doing more foreclosure sales, and hopes to implement a fee schedule for civil services provided. Sheriff Glerup and county counsel will provide a draft schedule for the court’s approval.

The court met with landowners from the meadowlands area, regarding issues with road maintenance and access issues. A lengthy discussion ensued. The group agreed to put together a committee, to continue to work towards a resolution. Judge Steve Grasty volunteered to meet with the committee regularly.

Dan Hoke was appointed to the Harney County Commission on Children and Families.

The court signed an order denying vacation of a road near Princeton.

Kenneth H. Delano, Jr. was appointed Harney County Surveyor.

After advertising for interest in vacant fair board positions, the court received letters of interest from the following individuals: Lloydene Hill, Vern Brown Jr., Pamela Sherburn, Valri Purdy, Kevin Pryse, Linc Reed-Nickerson, Dawn Crafts, Karen Moon, Brian Farrally, Julie Burri and Joe Maher.  The court will meet with these individuals, the current fair board, manager and directors on Dec. 7.

Proposals were received from ASI (A Systems Integrator), Chaves Consulting, Black Mountain Software, Springbrook Software and Tyler Technologies for county general ledger and financial software.  Judge Grasty, County Treasurer Nellie Franklin Treasurer and Human Resource Administrator LaDene Hurd will open them together and begin the review process.

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