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Supervisors seek sharing details

T-R FILE PHOTO County Engineer Paul Geilenfeldt spends a lot of his time between Marshall and Jasper counties. At Tuesday’s regular meeting, the Marshall County Board of Supervisors asked him to put together a sharing agreement detailing his work for Jasper County and how long it might last.

Marshall County Engineer Paul Geilenfeldt was asked to put together a sharing agreement to bring back to the next Marshall County Board of Supervisors meeting.

Seeking more details and clarification on the time he has spent helping Jasper County this year, Geilenfeldt asked to be on the agenda at the regular Tuesday meeting. Geilenfeldt said he was asking the Jasper County human resources director if they had received any applications for the county engineer position. They have 21 people interested in the job, but Geilenfeldt said most of them are not qualified.

“He said they have a couple in there they think they could use,” he said. “At any rate, it’s still going to take quite a bit of time and I’m OK with discussing this further but I think we need an agreement because as of now, Marshall County hasn’t been compensated anything for my services for Jasper County. I haven’t been compensated anything.”

Jasper County began to have more success in their search for an engineer but they also widened the net beyond Iowa.

“You have to be licensed in Iowa to even be considered for the job,” he said.

The lack of compensation — to him and to Marshall County — has been recognized by the Jasper County Board of Supervisors, Geilenfeldt said.

“They think it’s time, but they obviously don’t know how long it’s going to go,” he said. “In my head, I think it could still go another three, four months. It all comes down to who they hire.”

Geilenfeldt said he wants to know if the supervisors are interested in him trying to get more details of sharing his services worked out. He would like to see a sharing agreement put into place if this continues.

Supervisor Dave Thompson said he knows there has been a lot of discussion about sharing Geilenfeldt with Jasper County.

He said if they move forward with an agreement which includes sharing costs, he wants all of Marshall County’s costs covered. Thompson also wants to make sure the numbers are such as to incentivize Jasper County to hire their own engineer. Looking at agreements between other counties, Geilenfeldt said it is possible one county could save at least $30,000 annually through sharing an engineer.

“This has gone on longer than I anticipated,” Thompson said. “My concern is it’s multi-full. We need to make sure this isn’t putting too much a burden on you or any of your additional staff or any of your home life. I know you’ve been called out even on holidays on this. I want to make sure if we’re going to pursue this that you’re comfortable with it, you’re not having any trouble getting your duties done here.”

Thompson said Geilenfeldt’s primary responsibility is Marshall County, but it is nice to be able to help others out. He recommended the supervisors put an absolute deadline on the sharing that would be fairly close to the end of the year.

Geilenfeldt said since he began helping Jasper County, there has been more work for his staff.

In other business:

• The board approved Deputy Sheriff Sergeant Ben Veren be moved to the position of chief deputy sheriff.

• Placed Supervisor Steve Salasek on the board of polling location redistricting. The county needs to have redistricting and polling locations set by Sept. 30. The redistricting is based on 2020 Census information, which will be available in August.

• Buildings & Grounds Director Lucas Baedke told the supervisors he wanted more clarification on what will be discussed at a special meeting on Friday with contractor First Onsite. Thompson said he wants more information about the work on the Marshall County Courthouse stays on schedule. Baedke said from First Onsite, he is seeking more details on schedule and who to talk to when something goes wrong.

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Contact Lana Bradstream at 641-753-6611 or

lbradstream@timesrepublican.com.

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