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Lincoln County Commissioners address medical cannabis licenses

The Lincoln County Commissioners met Tuesday, June 27 in the Lincoln County Boardroom. With Chairwoman, Landeen and Commissioner Schmidt absent, the remaining members discussed agenda items including medical cannabis licenses, termination of contracts and federal grants, Commissioner Jibben joined via phone.

Chief Civil Deputy State’s Attorney, William Golden joined the meeting to discuss a medical cannabis license.

“This is the time and place for a hearing on the Shangri-La medical license, they got a medical license over a year ago and they were supposed to go ahead and pay the second half of their payment for that of the $50,000 on March 1 of this year. They were contacted and informed that they had not paid at that point in time and our office has sent letters on May 1 and as well on April 21 we’ve had several telephone conversations with them about this, and I believe the Auditor’s Office has had several conversations with them as well, so we are bringing it in front of the board to revoke their license for failure to pay,” Golden said.

Golden explained that this is technically an administrative hearing and the applicant has the right to appear, present witnesses or make arguments on their behalf.

“It would be incumbent upon the county to show that they didn’t pay for their license at this point in time and so the board is actually sitting in a quasi-judicial role at this time,” Golden said.

With no one on the phone or present at the meeting, Commissioner Poppens moved forward with the meeting.

“The time and place for them to give their evidence and your evidence that they have not paid can be entered into the record,” Poppens said.

“I would just like to make my record, I would ask for the Auditor to just verify that they haven’t received any payment at this point,” Golden stated.

With no payment received, a request for a motion was asked. Arends made a motion to rescind the license, seconded by Jibben. Motion passed.

Highway Superintendent, Terry Fluit joined the meeting to get board action on a letter to terminate an agreement with the South Dakota Department of Transportation.

“This is for structure 42-020-201 on County Road 105. We were awarded a grant in 2021 of about $517,000 to do this project, because at that time, it pegged out at about $650,000. By the time we got all the work done on it and went to bid last year, it came in about $350,000-400,000 above cost estimates, so we rejected all of the bids and went back to the state and we reapplied for the difference of that fund to get more grant money. We found out in April that we were denied that request, so the next step is to terminate this agreement and we’re going to rescind the $517,000 on this structure, and we will reapply for a preservation grant in 2024,” he said.

Motion by Arends, seconded by Jibben. Motion passed.

Fluit requested approval from the board to apply for a Safe Streets for All Action Plan Grants from the Federal Government.

“This came out from the bipartisan infrastructure law back in 2021, this is some of the discretionary funding that we can apply for directly to the Feds. We are looking to apply for an action plan grant and we have discovered that we need this grant and we need to have a safety action plan that we need to have for the County before we can apply for an implementation or a Build Grant,” he said.

Motion by Arends, seconded by Jibben.

Linda Montgomery joined the public comment portion of the request.

“I was reading over this last night, and I guess I’m always a little leery when we are looking at government grants and what we have to do for those grants and why we’re doing them. In your facts and vetting, it says that the county will be 100 per cent responsible for all ineligible product and RSI product costs, including the product cost in excess of $44,601.51 on the county roads. I know that I am naïve on this, but do we really need the grant? I saw your budget that you guys put out a couple of weeks ago, that it seems like is it really a benefit to us getting more entangled with the federal government about our roads and other issues. I understand, and I’m glad your brought it up that we need it before a build grant, I don’t know, I just wanted to voice my concern about once again, getting involved with federal grants and what that will end up costing us as a county and what rights we may lost with this grant,” Montgomery said.

The Commission thanked her for her time. Motion passed.

Human Resources Director, Traci Humphrey requested board action to make proposed revisions to the employee handbook.

“As of June 27, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act will go into effect and this act has additional protection, so we wanted to update our employee handbook to reflect those new productions and act,” she said.

The act states additional protections for pregnant persons who have medically necessary accommodations due to their pregnancy, childbirth or other related situations. Motion passed.

Auditor, Sheri Lund requested board action on temporary alcoholic beverages which would amend resolution 2107-20.

“Currently, our resolution 2107-20 states that within the temporary license issued pursuant to this resolution to this Resolution may allow the sale of alcoholic beverages on public property or property owned by a nonprofit corporation during a special event in a publicly-owned facility. This puts a restraint on some people requesting a temporary license because not all of the events are being held on public property, so what I would like to do is amend the resolution and remove item number nine so that we don’t have to worry about the public property portion,” Lund said.

Commissioner Arends had a few questions about the proposal.

“Didn’t we originally include this so we could allow this to occur at the 4-H facility?” Arends asked.

“I’m not sure about that, but I know that it doesn’t prevent us from having it at the 4-H facility because of this,” Lund responded.

Motion made by Arends, seconded by Jibben. Motion passed.


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