Beltrami County Veterans Services Officer Scotty Allison announced his long-term plan to retire in 2022. During the county’s work session Tuesday afternoon, Allison described the process of certifying a new veterans services officer, which he estimates will take about a year to train.
According to the latest estimates, there are over 2,800 veterans living in Beltrami County, and the VSO works with them through the appeals process to ensure they receive the compensation they’ve earned serving in this country’s military. The new trainee will likely be hired next June.
Other items on the Beltrami County Board of Commissioners’ work session agenda:
- An overview of the various types of grants Beltrami County Health and Human Services receives through the state and other sources. Public Health, for instance, receives the majority of their funding through grants.
- Update to the changes in the License Center. Beltrami’s license center is one of the few in the state open to the public. In the past four weeks, they have processed 1,154 driver’s licenses. Compared to last year over the same time period, they processed 543 driver’s licenses.
There were no items on the regular agenda, and one citizen addressed the board, concerning the reports of “busloads” of protesters were coming to Bemidji after the May 30 demonstration. The citizen cited an incident out of Oregon that a multi-racial family, traveling in a painted white school bus, were held by a militia for several hours amid these rumors. NPR reports that this rumor of buses of full of antifa protesters sent many small towns across the country into a panic.
During the discussion following the meeting, County Administrator Kay Mack said the budget process was due to begin soon. The first meetings with department heads will be held July 1. Commissioners Craig Gaasvig and Richard Anderson are expected to serve on the budget committee.
The board will also review other county ordinances concerning the removal of unruly citizens in board meetings and consider having such rules in place in Beltrami County. During the last board meeting, a handful of outspoken citizens spoke over the majority of the board’s work session and regular meeting.