A Few More Student Observations….

Eau Claire City Council


      After spending my day on Tuesday boxed up in my cubicle making final changes to my project, I met with Kristina to go over it. She flipped through all of my papers, for what seemed like hours, without saying a word or making a facial expression. But after a few minutes she actually told me she liked it very much and only offered a few changes, which was great! I actually did a little more than what I was supposed to do for my project by also changing the employee description layout. When she initially gave me the assignment she gave me lots of documents, one of them being the employee job requirements sheet and the layout was terrible. So I just went ahead and reformatted the whole thing by simplifying it and separating it into categories, which was actually more for my personal benefit. So meeting with her it was actually nice to hear that she loved that I reformatted it and that she wanted to use it.It just really feels great that I can create something using a little imagination and some templates and someone wants to use it. Even though creating something all along was my goal, it’s just good to know she really liked everything. She also decided to add a few things to what I was doing. Instead of this project only really benefiting the OA (Office Assistant) 3s, it will now also benefit the OA 5s. If the OA 5s also complete this process they will receive a certificate or some type of recognition that says they show mastery in that area. I think that by adding this aspect to the new manual and also giving OA 5’s recognition for their work will help improve the overall cohesiveness of the office environment

Bri Betts

     Today we completed our first project. The project was to compile exemption options for local governments under the Stormwater & Erosion Control Ordinance (17.05). The ordinance basically says that there are certain minimum requirements that you have to follow and if you don’t follow them you can get fined or even a lawsuit. The towns have their own ways of doing things that have worked for decades and they want to have exemptions made for them. We made a list of possible exemptions (below):

Stormwater Ordinance Exemption Options
Structural Exemption Questions
1) Urbanized Area Exemption?
-NR 216.023 #2. Less than 1,000 people
2) What kind of permits are already being acquired that might be sufficient to meet the intent of our County Stormwater Ordinance?
3) Definition for designation of a small MS4?
-Eau Claire County is greater than 10,000 people, but its population density is less than 1,000 people/mi2. So, specifically, how is that determined? Minimum requirements?
Application Change Proposals
1) Use of a single application or simplification of process.
2) In-Kind Replacement
-If not structural changes are made, is a phone call or e-mail sufficient?
Fee Change Proposals
1) A refund or partial refund to users who complete the application correctly the first time.
2) The towns have an annual fee based upon the number of average number of permits issued each year (perhaps 75% of fees). This annual town fee acts as a reserve for the County. Then the fee is waived for permits. LCD can then charge for each resubmitted or amended application that must be made.
a. Different classifications of an annual Stormwater Management Fees can be made according to the location and population of the area.
b. Classifications can also be made according to whether the project is an individual’s project or one for the town.
3) Another source for fee compensation?

… Karen Daniel-Hamberg

     In addition to the trip to meet with the Amish, we have also gone on a couple of other learning excursions. At both places, landowners were not up to code in their respective situations. The first was a business owner who did not keep up with rainwater runoff expectations. The second was a farmer whose barnyard runoff system was not up to par. We learned how they were not in compliance with State or County ordinances. It was very interesting seeing the confrontation between officials and landowners. The two situations were very different in this regard. In the meeting with the business landowner, he was not willing to comply and is therefore taking the matter to the courts to fight the County’s judgments. The farmer was willing to work with the County to make the changes necessary. It was interesting to see the two different perspectives.

… Ben Swegarden

     Today I found out that I will be moving to the Health department on June 17. Since my time has been cut short in Human Resources my supervisor gave me a new project that will be easier completed in a shorter amount of time. I will be creating a Performance Evaluation Program Review. My task will be to develop a training program for supervisors on how to evaluate based upon this competency model. This evaluation should fit different departments and not just one specific department. I will have to research and write a lot for the project, and I am responsible for presenting my findings to the HR director and possibly to other administration.  I also sat in on a meeting with the employees in HR along with another intern. In the meeting the director went over what HR needed to start planning for, such as: new employee orientation, training work session that takes place on MLK day, and even the Christmas party. There was talk of making the Christmas party a dinner murder mystery. The murder mystery was at last year’s party and it was a hit. They also discussed who they could have as a speaker on the training work session. It is important that a speaker touch base on civil rights. The other intern is in charge of planning the orientation.

… Brittany Williams