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November 21, 2013
Daily Gate City

County hires broker for 401K plan

by Cindy Lutzi

MONTROSE – The Lee County Board of Supervisors agreed Tuesday to hire Scott Overland of Cedar Rapids Bank and Trust as broker of record for county employees’ 401K plan.

Lee County Benefits Clerk Nikki Sugars introduced Overland as having been recommended by Pension Inc., the company that administers the county’s investment plan.

The change came on the heels of Merrill Lynch’s recent announcement that it is withdrawing from the public pension 401K business as of March 31. Merrill Lynch has been Lee County’s investment plan provider.

In its place, Great West will be the new provider of county 401K plans.

Overland has about 15 plans available and will meet with the county’s 90 employees to discuss their best option.

He will be available by phone or email all the time.

Overland said he always been interested in the history of finances and has studied that history. He also considers himself to be an optimist.

Through his research and investment experiences, Overland believes that fear and greed drive markets into some of their most extreme swings.

“I’ve seen maximum greed in the late 1990s and in 2008-2009 maximum fear,” Overland said. “I like to stay somewhere in between.”

He provides perspective to investors in order to avoid the extremes, Overland said.

Supervisors also will enter into an agreement with Mediacom for Internet services as recommended by IT supervisor Luan Schmidtt.

Mediacom’s proposal will bring a 30 Megabyte per second fiber optic connection to all Lee County buildings, including those in Keokuk. Fort Madison will have 100 Mbps capability in order to handle internal and external traffic as it will serve as the service hub. Installation costs will be built into a monthly bill of $4,000 and stretch over a 72-month contract period. With 90-day installation promised, the budget will have to be adjusted to accommodate a monthly fee increase from $2,070 to $4,000, according to Schmidtt.

A bid from Danville Telephone Company, the Internet provider for LeeComm/Lee County Correctional Center, did not meet the levels Mediacom will furnish, according to Schmidt’s numbers. Also, Danville wants $44,000 to $45,000 up front for installation.

Lisco of Fairfield entered a bid, but for fiber optic to Fort Madison only.

Schmidtt noted that the South Lee County Courthouse and Fort Madison Administrative Offices communicate via Voice over Internet Protocol to save on long distance charges. Telephone land lines are still in use for local calls and as backup during power outages.

Truck replacement:

Lee County Engineer Ernie Steffensmeier said that after reviewing bids to replace a 2003 belly dump air-suspension trailer, he prefers the $31,800 bid by Highway Trailer Sales of Kansas City and salvage price of $5,800 from Truck Repair, Inc. of Fort Madison.

Other bids included Transwest Trailer, Belton, Mo., $31,565 with trade-in; Rees Mack Sales, Lawton, $35,120 with trade-in; and Siouxland Trailer Sales, Sioux City, $33,400 with no trade-in.

The county’s trailer was damaged during a turn when the axle twisted and bent the frame. The trailer was loaded at the time.

Steffensmeier prefers air-suspension to spring-suspension.

Supervisor Ernie Schiller directed Steffensmeier to turn in an insurance claim.

Other business:

Supervisors granted a tax exemption to Shirley Weiler of Argyle.

Approved a step increase for Lee County Health Department registered nurse Becky Fader. Her pay will increase from $25.80 to $26.32 per hour.

Acknowledged Sue Sorensen as the Lee County Sheriff’s representative to the compensation board.

(Article cited from the Daily Gate City Newspaper)