Commissioners discuss audit report


LUSK – The Niobrara County Commissioners met with auditors during the regular meeting on Tuesday to discuss the annual report.

Local officials were also in attendance at the meeting as everything was reported to be in order. One major challenge the county will face in the future along with other places across the country is keeping up with inflation in order to maintain employees. 

The auditors did note some checks were backdated and had to be fixed in order to keep the books clean. There was discussion about recognizing where some grants come from as even if it may come from a state agency it may still be from the federal government. 

The commissioners also discussed the process of specific grants which need to be signed by the sheriff’s department with Sheriff Cary Gill and Detention Lieutenant Jim Frye. County Clerk Becky Freeman said grants received by the sheriff’s department need to be presented to the commissioners to be documented properly in the minutes. 

In other business, the Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) held its regular meeting and discussed when the next ALICE active shooter training will be. Emergency Manager James Santistevan said the plan is to have it at the fairgrounds on May 11 at 5:30 p.m. Santistevan said they can also host another training if some people cannot attend the initial one. 

Santistevan also discussed homeland security grants for the courthouse’s new generator. The county has received $64,000 so far and currently has two years to use it. The second grant would be accepted in May or June and would go in effect in September. Santistevan said he could apply for a $40,000 grant to help pay for the generator. 

The next LEPC meeting is July 19. 

The commissioners also met with Dru Bower of Dru Consulting to discuss updates to the Newcastle BLM risk management plan as the county is a cooperating agency. Bower said there was little progress this month and a cooperating agency meeting is expected to be held in the fall. Bower said a draft of the document will not be available to the public but cooperating agencies can review it and provide input. 

Chairman Pat Wade said the recent meeting he attended seemed to be a waste of time since the responses seemed to be predictable. Bower said there was no report or recording of the meeting for her to review from the information as well. Wade said in the survey he participated in he focused on multiple use and cultural use as well as property rights which seemed to be respected by others at the meeting.  

In action items, the commissioners approved the Wyoming Choice Gas supplier delegation agreement and index price with the option to fix for one year, a ratified catering permit for an extra day of the Tucker Greenough Memorial Pool Tournament on April 10, a Memorandum of Understanding between the county and the Wyoming Commissioners Association for the Congressional Tour Initiative, a crisis response agreement between the county and the Wyoming Department of Health, a resolution for the termination of the special prosecutor a, a 24-hour catering permit for the Lusk Liquor Store on May 11 for the Wyoming Banker’s Association Meeting and a cooperative agreement with the Department of Family Services. 

The next regular meeting is May 3 at 9 a.m. 

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