BY LYANN OLSON
Fiesel explained that the commissioners would be the “judge” at the hearing. They would need to gather statements, evidence, listen to testimony.
Commissioner Nelson stated he was in favor of making a motion to hold a hearing.
In response Sheriff Cude stated, “I am very leery about all this nonsense. To have a hearing is absurd. These are all reckless allegations. I’m tired of it. It’s not worth the heartache. I love this county, I love the people here, but I’m about done with it [the dramatics, fighting, etc.].
Chairman Ryberg asked Sheriff Cude if he’d like to resign.
Sheriff Cude responded that he would resign with a severance pay of six months, “too keep me on my feet until I can find another job.” He left the meeting.
Commissioner Nelson made a motion, second by Commissioner Dave Sellie to hold a public hearing. The motion carried.
Sheriff Cude returned a few minutes later with a letter of resignation in hand effective immediately, requesting six months of severance pay.
“To leave a job on a day’s notice, I still have to feed my family. And I’ve already lost job offers based on all of this,” stated Sheriff Cude.
After going into executive session for negotiations related to the sheriff’s proposal, the commissioners countered with 60 days of severance pay from Sept. 5 including retirement, complete release of liability for the county, no further appointment for Burke County, and health care (% of a family plan) paid through Dec. 31, 2014. The motion was carried.
After some discussion, Sheriff Cude said, “I guess, write it up.”
The commissioners requested Fiesel to write up a severance package for Sheriff Cude to sign, adjourning until 1:30 p.m.
At 1:30 p.m., Fiesel requested the board give her more time to draft the agreement.
“Three hours was not enough time,” stated Fiesel. “I would like a week to get it done to feel comfortable. I want to get it done right so we aren’t open to more liability for the county.”
The commissioners granted her request, recessing the special meeting until Friday, Sept. 12 at 9:00 a.m.
SHERIFF CUDE RESPONDS
Monday morning, Sept. 8, Sheriff Cude responded to the county’s offer of a severance package.
“I’ve thought long and hard over the weekend. While I appreciate the offer, I will respectfully decline the severance package, out of regard for the community,” stated Sheriff Cude.
Sheriff Cude still intends to resign at the special meeting, stating, “My resignation has nothing to do with the petition or the hearing.”
The Burke County Commissioners met in regular session Tuesday, Sept. 2. Commissioner Nelson was absent.
While looking over the submitted bills, the commissioners questioned the overtime bills submitted by the deputies. One deputy had over 40 hours of overtime with no explanation where all the extra hours came from.
“I can handle five or six hours, but 40 hours is a tremendous amount,” stated Commissioner Sellie.
“We might as well nip this in the bud now,” stated Chairman Ryberg. “If we don’t nip it now, we’ll just be fighting it.”
The deputies’ overtime was rejected at this time, sending it back to have the hours justified.
[At the special meeting, Sept. 5, Sheriff Cude addressed the bills, stating that if he had known they weren’t done correctly, the bills would have not been submitted. His supervisor takes care of the overtime slips, and they will be redone correctly with the needed information.]
Ken Tetrault, road foreman, informed the board that Oasis Petroleum did remove the center approach, so he no longer had a problem with the two previous approach permits. Oasis submitted a third request to make an approach wider on Burke County 11. The board approved all three permits.
Oasis Petroleum pledged about 9700 ton of gravel to help out between Burke County 7 and State Highway 40. It will be short of the two inches of gravel top on that road, due to the wider road in places.
Layne Nelson’s gravel pit in the southern part of Burke County is ready for a crusher. The county has committed for 15,000 yards with Kandiyohi Township wanting an additional 5,000.
Tetrault has talked to O’Neils on Burke County 1 to testing for gravel in four different areas. Dan Peterson has also been in contact with him.
“It would be nice to find something in that portion of the county,” stated Tetrault.
The first round of mowing is just about done, and ready to start the second.
Tetrault was contacted by Ward County. They are redoing the bridge on Ward County 1. By the railroad track, two approaches on the Burke County side are holding water which needs to be drained as soon as possible. An 18” equalizing culvert is needed to get water from one side to another. The commissioners were okay with it.
The department is working on the old blade to get it ready for the Historical Society.
When 3000 lb. road restrictions were put on due to the recent heavy rains, only one complaint was heard, as a farmer was hauling peas. Ryberg told the caller to notify the Sheriff’s Department.
The fall application of dust control will take place Sept. 4 if the weather holds. Tetrault has received a couple complaints on the west side of the county. He has asked the guy if they could up the rate a little, to have it last longer.
This is the third year of dust control. Complaints have been about pot holes, as the blades don’t go over the dust control.
Jeff Ebsch, Brosz Engineering, reported King’s Highway chip sealing has been completed.
And he was very happy to report that the courthouse parking was “finally turning black.”
The deadline was Aug. 31, and the county could access liquidated damages. As long as the company finishes by the end of the week, the commissioners were pacified.
Burke County Road 7 is moving along, pipes installed. A double culvert will be put in with dirt work starting this week.
Amber Fiesel was contacted about a railroad crossing being blocked for over an hour. She did contact the railroad company. The sheriff department needs to start citing them.
Fiesel asked the commissioners if Darla Juma, representative of the Burke County Victim Witness Assistance Program & Domestic Violence Program, could use the break room by her office on the 2nd floor on Tuesdays. This was fine.
Fiesel received a letter from the Attorney General regarding the sheriff. A special meeting was set for Friday, Sept. 5 to have a full board.
A public hearing will be held Oct. 7 at 11:00 a.m. on weather modification.
BY LYANN OLSON
Schneider grew up in the rural farming community area of Kief/Drake as a minister’s son. His educational background includes attending Minot High and Minot State, earning a bachelor degree in Criminal Justice and a minor in business management and history.
He has 12 years of law enforcement, working in the Minot Police Department, Ward County Sheriff’s Department and most recently with the City of Surrey, the last two years as the Chief of Police. He also assisted the Rugby Police Department by training the deputies. “Basically, they had to start over,” said Schneider.
The write-in candidate admits, “I don’t know everything. If elected, I would like help from Barry Jager. Barry [Jager] and Sue [Christiansen] ran a tight ship. And I want to express my thanks to Barry and his family for all his years of service to the sheriff’s department.”
Schneider wants to get involved with the schools, let the students get to know the law enforcement of the county and not be afraid to approach them.
Emphasizing community involvement, the Lieutenant would like to work with business owners, doing more building checks. Along with this, he would like to initiate a program which involves doing farm/home checks when Burke County citizens go on vacation, “We will make checks twice a day.”
In the same order, he would like to start in each community, a watch program. “I also plan to attend all city council meetings, rotating with the deputies if elected,” stated Schneider. “I also am willing to work with the commissioners. I’m open to listening to them and want to work as a team.” Schneider wants a secretary
back in the office, “My office will be open during business hours. The public can get ahold of me on my cell phone and I will be glad to go to them.”
Schneider and his wife, Ashlie of five years, along with their children, Keagen 6 and Reese 3, temporarily live in Surrey. A candidate has six months after being elected to move within the county.
Schneider will be actively campaigning going door to door in each community, meeting the people of the county during the next few weeks.
Early on a recent August morning I awoke well before the sun had even thought about rising, earlier than I prefer to wake, closer to the time I prefer to go to sleep.
I had remembered to set the timer on the coffee maker the night before so the only sound in the house was the odd assortment of groans and gurgles required to produce a pot of hot coffee.
To those of us that drink coffee it is musical.
Incidentally, the same noises are required of me to tie my shoes or any other task that requires bending at the waist.
I awoke early because the day that always seemed like one of those far off days had arrived and it was time.
It was time to take our daughter and a few of her belongings that she had deemed “essential” to a college campus eight hours away.
Drive eight hours, unpack those essential belongings, carry them up eight flights of stairs to a room half the size of the one in which those essential belongings had once adorned, and then leave our daughter to be educated.
Leave her to sleep in a room where a father can’t peek in and take comfort in knowing that she is sleeping safe and sound as I have done most every night since the day we brought her home.
When I went out to load one last box of essential belongings into the pickup, it was dark and the stars were bright and it made me think of the night we brought her home from the hospital.
It seemed like yesterday that I was unloading the last of the essential belongings a new parent gets issued, when I paused and looked up at the stars and said to nobody and everybody, “I need some help.”
Somehow over 18 years has passed since that night, and somehow we managed to raise a girl who is above all things a good person.
So early on an August morning I looked up at those same stars through the same eyes that see different now and said to nobody and everybody, “Keep her safe.”
So we loaded up and headed west towards the future, with thoughts of the past so thick it was hard to see sometimes. Thankfully by the time those thoughts were getting to me the sun was up and I had an excuse to hide my teary eyes behind sunglasses.
It seemed to hit hardest when we got within 100 miles of Bozeman.
In a last ditch attempt to drag Sierra’s childhood out a little longer I started to gradually let up on the accelerator and contemplated taking a wrong turn while she was napping.
It’s not wrong for a parent to entertain such selfish thoughts. You sort of get attached to these people when you spend 18 years completely entangled in their every moment.
Apparently teenagers are not of this same mindset as it didn’t seem all that trying of an experience for Sierra to part ways with us.
Perhaps it’s a built in mechanism to keep them from being content to live in our basements.
For a little girl who would cry when I didn’t get her ponytail straight, she never shed a tear as she hugged us and ushered us to the parking lot.
I am happy she wasn’t content to spend the rest of her life in our basement, and I am impressed with her strength, motivation, and drive to move onto the next chapter in her life.
But come on…are just a few tears and a little blubbering as you bid ado to Dear Old Dad too much to ask for?
Kicked to the curb by college…so it goes.
Early on a recent August morning things changed.
I’ll keep you posted.