TV District plans to go digital

Board Chairman of the Conrad TV District board of directors and board member Jerry Walth met with commissioners at the last regular business meeting.

The purpose of the visit was to request that the county enter into an agreement with Lacan, a firm working with analog TV conversion to digital TV.

By itself, the TV District does not have the authority to enter into such an agreement. They would like to have an agreement under the umbrella of the county.

The cost to digitalize the transmitting would be $79,000. A federal grant of $71,000 would leave the remaining $8,000 to be funded by the district.

The TV District currently has about $54,000 in funds. They would also use its current funds to purchase and install the necessary towers which would be in addition to the equipment and conversion from analog to digital.


After some discussion, Commissioner Joe Christiaens moved to proceed with the conversion to digital, pending approval by the county attorney and verification that the county nor the district needs to submit a request for proposals. Commissioner Sandy Broesder seconded that motion and it carried.


In other business, the commissioners approved the county funds transfer for a Medicaid match agreement with the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services, Addictive and Mental Disorders Division. The county receives Medicaid funds from the state and agrees to remit them to the department.

Currently, the money received is $6,153 per fiscal year.

Commissioner Broesder moved to allocate the Secure Rural Schools funding portion of the Forest Reserve Act as 85 percent to Title I and 15 percent to Title II of the program.

By designating 15 percent to Title II, the county will receive its full payment in lieu of taxes (PILT).

If the county were to choose the Title III program, the money would be counted as a prior payment of PILT money and the full payment of PILT would not be received.

Commissioners approved draw number eight for the Neighborhood Stabilization Program for $32,173.44 for additional expenditures at the Brady project and two projects in Conrad.

A job description for a part-time (job share) for the accounting and recording clerk in the Clerk and Recorder’s office was approved as was the same for a part-time clerk in the Treasurer’s office.

In other related business, a mutual aid agreement for contingency staffing was approved.

The agreement is for staffing at the Pondera County Health Department, including the Sanitarian.

Under this agreement, terms were laid out for which the county health and sanitarian departments of Pondera, Glacier, Teton and Toole counties will assist each other during emergency situations.

A wildlife extension grant invoice was approved for the amount of $560 to cover labor expenses of the U.S. Wildlife Service in Sheep Creek restoration – Dupuyer Creek.

The invoice will be submitted to the Wildlife Service for payment to the county and upon receipt, the county will pay the funds to the contractor of the project.