CUSTER COUNTY— The Custer County Board of Supervisors held their regular meeting via WebEx on Tuesday, May 12. A majority of the meeting focused on approving and forgiving CDBG loans. CEDC Executive Director Andrew Ambriz spoke to the board about the recommendation that Sandhills Motors in Arnold be approved for a loan to be able to move the operation to Broken Bow.
District 5 Supervisor Don Olson had concerns of using the loans to take a business out of a smaller community and moving it to a larger community, “That is the opposite of what the program was designed for.” Supervisor Olsen stated that he does not want to use the funds to help an existing business, but wants the funds to be used to create new business for the county.
District 7 Supervisor Doug Stunkel noted that potential business owners had ample time to apply for the loan, but did not. He stated that it is obviously not ideal, but the CDBG board made the recommendation after going over all the possibilities.
Supervisor Olsen also stated that he was concerned that if the regulations changed on the forgivable loan, the Custer County tax payers would be on the hook to pay back the forgiven part of the loan. Ambriz noted that he had discussed with a number of people regarding the loans and was confident that the state would have to pay back the federal government if the regulations changed.
A motion was then made by Supervisor Olsen to deny the loan to Sandhills Motors which failed 3-4 (YES to deny the loan: Dist. 1 Bobby Myers, Dist. 4 Dwain Bryner, Dist. 5 Don Olson; NO to deny the loan: Dist. 2 Tammy Kleeb, Dist. 3 Barry Fox (Tie Breaker Vote), Dist. 6 Matthew Eggleston, Dist. 7 Doug Stunkel).
Supervisor Eggleston then made the motion to approve the loan to Sandhills Motors which passed 4-3 (YES to approve the loan: Dist. 2 Tammy Kleeb, Dist. 3 Barry Fox (Tie Breaker Vote), Dist. 6 Matthew Eggleston, Dist. 7 Doug Stunkel; NO to approve the loan: Dist. 1 Bobby Myers, Dist. 4 Dwain Bryner, Dist. 5 Don Olson).
Other decisions made by the Supervisors include approving to advertise to fill the Weed Supervisor position recently vacated, approving the Region III match request for behavior services, and approving the Blue Cross/Blue Shield renewal application.
A date has also been set for the Custer County Courthouse and Judicial Center to re-open to the public. After discussions took place on being able to safely conduct business it was decided that Monday, May 18 would be the date where the public would be able to access both buildings. While those two buildings will opening back up the Driver’s License Examiners Office will remain closed. According to Custer County Clerk Connie Gracey, all CDC guidelines will be used and masks and hand sanitizer will also be available.