October, 2020 Minutes

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Stephenson Soil and Water Conservation District Board Meeting

Minutes of the Meeting of the Board of Directors
October 21, 2020

Call to Order: Chairman Jim Hutchison called the meeting to order of the Stephenson Soil and Water Conservation District Board at 8:10 am on October 21, 2020.  The board met in the Blackhawk room at the Stephenson County Farm Bureau.


Roll Call: Present at the time the meeting was called to order were board members Jim Hutchison, Barb Klinger, Seth Wenzel, and Matt Schlachter; District employees Lorna Chezem, Administrative Coordinator and Aaron Dinderman, Resource Conservationist. NRCS employee Abby Mielke, Soil Conservationist

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Approval of Minutes: Seth Wenzel moved to approve minutes of the September SWCD board meeting, seconded by Matt Schlachter. Voting aye: all. Motion passed.


Bills to be Paid: Jim Hutchison moved to approve the bills as listed on the monthly budget sheet for October; seconded by Matt Schlachter. Voting aye: all. Motion passed.


Review and Approval of Employee Time Sheets: Employee time sheets were passed. Barb Klinger   moved to approve the timesheets; seconded by Seth Wenzel. Voting aye: all. Motion passed.          


Action Items:

Stephenson County Board Report:  William Hadley/No Report


Freeport City Council Report:  Randy Bukas, City Manager/No Report


Conservation Plans & CPO’s:  Aaron/Lorna

  • List was passed of last-minute signers for CRP signup 53/54. Barb Klinger moved to approve the CRP Conservation Plans & CPO’s listed; seconded by Jim Hutchison. Voting aye: all. Motion passed.         


Contribution Agreement:  Lorna/Aaron/Abby

  • FY21 Administrative Agreement intent to participate was passed to those present and chairman Jim Hutchison signed; it will be sent in to AISWCD.
  • FY21 CRP Contribution Agreement was discussed in length. The fact that many changes had been made during the middle of the FY20 agreement; and that our final invoice was only a fraction of the payment expected. The payment schedule for some of the practices could be adjusted at a higher rate to make up for some of the time spent and the final invoicing. Barb Klinger agreed to talk to Rebecca at AISWCD about this. A plan of work will be submitted for the FY21 CRP agreement.


CRP Update:  Aaron/Abby – No other discussion; see above


EQIP Update:  Abby

  • EQIP is at a standstill; no sign-up has been announced to date.


CSP Update:  Abby

  • Payments will continue to be made throughout October. There are approximately 40-50 payments that need to be completed by the November 6 deadline in Stephenson.
  • No cut-off date has been announced for new applications.
  • 4 or 5 contracts will need to be renewed by the end of the year.


Programs / SWCD Updates:  Lorna/Aaron

  • Employee Contracts were passed for each employee to sign and chairman Jim Hutchison to sign. These will be filed in the employee file.
  • SWCD Personnel Policy was reviewed. Barb Klinger made a motion to remove the cap for sick leave; seconded by Seth Wenzel. Voting aye: all. Motion passed.
  • Fall Fish Sale Recap – 19 people ordered 4,040 fish plus 66 pounds of fathead minnows. Sales totaled $4,303.75 after paying the bill to Andry’s of $3465,25 that left a profit of $838.50.
  • New Administrative Assistance Grant and CRP Grant Intent/Pre-proposal forms was discussed under contribution agreement.
  • FMP and Annual Financial Review Paperwork – the financial review and comptrollers report was passed for the board members to review. Barb Klinger made a motion to accept the review and comptrollers report, seconded by Jim Hutchison. Voting Aye: all. Motion passed.
    • The Certification of 3/5 majority vote form was given to Chairman Jim Hutchison to sign.
    • The letter that goes to the comptroller’s office was given to Chairman Jim Hutchison to sign.
    • The engagement letter was given to Chairman Jim Hutchison to sign.
  • CPP Projects – Aaron passed two new projects for the board to review a well decommissioning and a cover crop. Barb Klinger made a motion to approve both projects; seconded by Matt Schlachter. Voting aye: all. Motion passed.


Approve Reports as E-Mailed: Barb Klinger moved to approve the reports as e-mailed from: Lorna Chezem, Abby Mielke, and Hanna McWhirter; seconded by Matt Schachter. Voting aye: all. Motion carried.


Informational Items:


  1. Thank-you from Extension for sponsoring 4H awards
  2. NACD contribution request – board members asked Lorna to check to see when this was paid and the amount.


Other Business:

  1. Abby told the board that the building lease had been signed so we will not have to relocate but many major changes have been proposed – moving walls, etc. Abby will keep the board members informed of the changes/progress.
  2. Amy Schultz joined the meeting briefly and gave the directors an update about her activities for CAP/Ag in the Classroom. She has gotten some interest from Jr. High students to participate in the poster contest and has had 1 student interested in entering a photo. Amy has been making many Ag bags for various schools but still is only allowed in 3 schools for in person lessons.



Having no other business, Chairman Hutchison adjourned the meeting at 9:46 am.

Barb Klinger, Treasurer/Secretary                      Notes recorded by Lorna Chezem

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