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Commissioner's Minutes - January 8, 2008

MINUTES OF THE SPECIAL MEETING OF THE COOK COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

Grand Marais, Minnesota

January 8, 2008

The Board met in special session this 8

th day of January, 2008, at the Courthouse in Grand Marais,

Minnesota.

The meeting was called to order at 8:30 a.m. with the following members present: Commissioners

Hall, Fenwick, Martinson, Johnson, and Sobanja. Absent: None.

County Board Chair Martinson led the Board in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

Commissioner Martinson requested nominations for the position of Cook County Board Chair for 2008.

Motion was made by Sobanja, seconded by Hall, and carried to elect Commissioner Bruce Martinson as

the County Board Chair in 2008.

Commissioner Martinson requested nominations for the position of Cook County Board Vice-Chair for

2008. Motion was made by Johnson, seconded by Hall, and carried to elect Commissioner Fritz Sobanja

as County Board Vice-Chair for 2008.

Motion was made by Johnson, seconded by Hall, and carried to amend the agenda for the meeting as

presented.

Braidy Powers, Auditor-Treasurer, appeared before the Board. Powers reported that he received two bids

from local newspapers to serve as the County’s legal paper for 2008. The County Board reviewed both

bids. Following discussion, Commissioner Johnson moved the adoption of the following resolution and

upon seconding by Commissioner Hall was adopted by unanimous yea vote of all members present:

RESOLUTION NO. 2008-01

A Resolution Designating the Official Newspaper

BE IT RESOLVED, by the Cook County Board of Commissioners, that the Cook County Star be

and the same is hereby designated as the official newspaper of Cook County for the year 2008

and;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Cook County Star be, and the same is hereby designated,

as the official newspaper in which all County publishing and the notice of calls for bids and the

notices of list of taxes on real estate in said Cook County, Minnesota, remaining delinquent on the

first Monday in January, 2008 be published.

Shae Kosmalski, County Highway Engineer, appeared before the Board. Kosmalski proposed that the

Cook County Board take action to designate the Cook County Web Page as an “Official Publication” for

the County. Kosmalski reviewed the statute that allows the County to designate the web site as such, and

noted that this type of advertising format has become the norm for most government agencies including

many other Minnesota Counties. Kosmalski reported that the Information Systems Department also

supports the request. Motion was made by Hall, seconded by Fenwick, and carried to designate the Cook

County Web Page as an Official Publication for County business beginning in January 2008.

The County Board discussed mileage reimbursement rates for 2008. Auditor-Treasurer Powers noted that

the current Federal mileage rate in 50.5¢ , and that Cook County has historically established a truck

mileage rate that is 20% higher. Motion was made by Johnson, seconded by Sobanja, and carried to

establish the 2008 mileage reimbursement rate at the IRS maximum allowable amount, and to establish a

truck mileage reimbursement rate that is 20% higher than the IRS car rate.

The County Board discussed meal reimbursement for 2008. Auditor-Treasurer Powers reported that the

current meal reimbursement is as follows: $10.00 for Breakfast, $12.00 for Lunch, $15.00 for Dinner.

The Board discussed whether said rates provided sufficient reimbursement. Motion was made by

Johnson, seconded by Sobanja, and carried to keep the meal reimbursement rates the same in 2008 as they

were in 2007. This motion carried by the following vote: Ayes- Hall, Johnson, Martinson, and Sobanja.

Nays – Fenwick.

The County Board considered designation of the County Agriculture Inspector, as required by Minnesota

Statute. Commissioner Hall moved the adoption of the following resolution and upon seconding by

Commissioner Fenwick was adopted by unanimous yea vote of all members present:

RESOLUTION NO. 2008-02

WHEREAS, provision is made in Minnesota Statute 18.231. Subdivision 1, as is indicated

in the attached copy of this statute and the regulation thereunder, for the appointment of

one or more County Agriculture Inspector (s) upon request of the Commissioner of

Agriculture;

WHEREAS, the Commissioner of Agriculture now requests that such appointments be

made by the Board of Commissioners,

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that Sharon Kosmalski, whose address is 609 4

th

Ave East, Grand Marais, Minnesota, 55604 and telephone number is 218/387-3695 is

hereby appointed from January 1, 2008 to December 31, 2008 at an annual salary of

$3,276.42

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the County Agriculture Inspector may attend the

annual short course and other regional or district conferences held during the year.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that a copy of this resolution shall be forwarded to the

MN Dept. of Agriculture, 625 Robert St. North, St. Paul, MN 55155.

The Board reviewed the list of Commissioner department liaison assignments for 2008. Motion was

made by Fenwick, seconded by Hall, and carried to keep the liaison assignments in 2008 as were agreed

upon for 2007, with one change, so that Commissioner Martinson would be the liaison to the Maintenance

Department and Commissioner Sobanja would be the liaison to the Highway Department.

The County Board reviewed the 2007 list of Commissioner appointments to various Boards,

Commissions, and Committees. Commissioners Hall and Fenwick agreed that Hall would serve as the

alternate to the North Shore Collaborative and Fenwick would serve as the delegate. Commissioners

Martinson and Johnson agreed that Johnson would serve as the representative to the Rainy River Basin

Plan Committee and Martinson would serve as an alternate rather than Commissioner Fenwick. Following

review, motion was made by Fenwick, seconded by Sobanja, and carried to approve the list of

Commissioner appointments to Boards, Commissions, and Committees for 2008.

Commissioner Fenwick noted that the Arrowhead Regional Development Commission requested that the

Cook County Board of Commissioners pass a resolution to formalize his appointment to the ARDC Board

of Directors. Commissioner Johnson moved the adoption of the following resolution and upon seconding

by Commissioner Hall was adopted by unanimous yea vote of all members present:

RESOLUTION NO._2008 – 03

BE IT HEREBY RESOLVED, that the Cook County Board of Commissioners re-appoint

Cook County Commissioner Robert Fenwick to serve as its representative on the Arrowhead

Regional Development Commission Board of Directors for 2008.

The Board discussed the list of Temporary Committees that various Commissioners attended. Several

changes and updates were noted. Motion was made by Fenwick, seconded by Sobanja, and carried to

approve the Temporary Committee list as revised.

The Board discussed meeting dates for the Cook County Board of Commissioners in 2008. Motion was

made by Fenwick, seconded by Hall, and carried to designate the second, third, and fourth Tuesday of

each month as regular County Board meeting dates, noting that the five Commissioners also attend the

District One AMC Quarterly meeting and the Annual AMC meeting each year.

At 9:00 a.m. a Public Hearing was convened to discuss assessment of tax payers for the resurvey costs for

Sections 7 & 18, all in Township 62N, R4E. Present for this public hearing were Contracted Surveyor

Wayne Hensche as well as Roger Kelly, affected property owner. Hensche reviewed the survey that was

conducted in Sections 7 & 18. Hensche also noted that his original cost was estimated at $25 per acre,

but the final cost was only $22.49 per acre. Hensche further noted that Roger Kelly had, in good faith,

already surveyed his own property. Hensche intends to pay Kelly’s portion of the assessment out of his

own earnings from the project. Auditor-Treasurer Powers was present for this discussion and noted that

the County Board has historically assessed such surveys based on a per acre cost rather than a per parcel

cost. Following discussion, motion was made by Hall, seconded by Sobanja, and carried to assess tax

payers in Sections 7 & 18, T62N, R4E at a per acre cost of $22.29. This motion carried by the following

vote: Ayes – Hall, Johnson, Martinson, and Sobanja. Nays – None. Abstained – Fenwick, as he is an

affected property owner in the area. A motion was then made by Hall, seconded by Sobanja, and carried

to establish terms of the assessment at 5% interest over a ten-year payment period beginning January 8,

2008. This motion carried by the following vote: Ayes – Hall, Johnson, Martinson, and Sobanja. Nays –

None. Abstained – Fenwick.

The County Board reviewed citizen appointments to various County Boards, Commissions and

Committees. Motion was made by Fenwick, seconded by Johnson, and carried to appoint David Tuttle to

the Cook County Board of Adjustment. Motion was made by Fenwick, seconded by Johnson, and carried

to re-appoint Lloyd Speck to a new 3-yr term on the Board of Adjustment. Motion was made by Sobanja,

seconded by Johnson, and carried to re-appoint Joan Abrahamson and Bruce Carmen to new 3-year terms

on the Community Center Board of Trustees and to appoint Marie Nordahl to an unexpired term as a

student representative.

The County Board considered three applications for the Grand Marais/Cook County Economic

Development Authority. Following discussion, a motion was made by Hall and seconded by Fenwick, to

appoint Keith Kuckler to the EDA, but this motion failed by the following vote: Ayes – Fenwick and

Hall. Nays – Johnson, Martinson, and Sobanja. The Board then discussed the application of Donald

Davison to serve on the EDA, as well as his status as a private attorney who also contracted with the City

of Grand Marais to provide legal services. EDA Director Matt Geretschlaeger was present for this

discussion, stating that he believed the counsel that Davison could provide to the EDA would be

beneficial. A motion was then made by Sobanja, seconded by Johnson, to appoint Donald Davison to a 6-

year term on the Grand Marais/Cook County EDA. This motion carried by the following vote: Ayes –

Johnson, Martinson, and Sobanja. Nays – Fenwick and Hall.

Motion was made by Sobanja, seconded by Johnson, and carried to appoint Clair Nalezny and Bob

Sopoci to 3-year terms on the Cook County Extension Committee. Motion was made by Sobanja,

seconded by Johnson, and carried to re-appoint Heather Kemp to a new 3-year term on the Grand Marais

Library Board. Motion was made by Fenwick, seconded by Hall, and carried to appoint Ted Mershon to

serve on the Cook County Personnel Committee.

Tim Nelson, Planning Director, appeared before the Board to discuss applicants for the Cook County

Planning Commission vacancies. Following discussion, motion was made by Hall, seconded by Fenwick,

and carried to re-appoint Richard Olson to a 2

nd 3-year term on the Planning Commission and to appoint

John Barton to a new 3-year term.

Correspondence-Memos

A. Materials for 1/10/08 meeting of MN Rural Counties Caucus. Information.

B. Arrowhead Regional Corrections Newsletter, Dec. 2007. Information.

C. Materials for 12/21/07 meeting of Arrowhead Regional Corrections Board. Information.

D. Materials for 12/19/07 meeting of Arrowhead EMS Ass’n. Information.

E. Ely Area and Cook County Lodging Tax Reports through 11/07. Information.

F. Cook County Soil & Water Conservation District meeting minutes for 11/1/07. Information.

G. Materials for 12/20/07 meeting of Cook County Hospital District. Information.

H. Materials for 12/18/07 meeting of Cook County Extension Committee. Information.

I. Materials for 12/20/07 meeting of Cook County Firewise Committee. Information.

J. 2007 Report from Flute Reed Partnership. Information.

K. Letter from NE Service Cooperative, 12/26/07, re: BC/BS Claims through 11/07. Information.

L. Email from Jeff Kroll, Arrowhead Soil Survey project leader, 12/19/07, re: Cook County Soil

Survey. The Board continued to discuss whether they would support a soil survey of Cook

County conducted by the Natural Resources Conservation Service. Following discussion, it

was agreed to place this issue on a future County Board agenda and invite Cook County Water

Plan Coordinator David Stark to attend and discuss this issue at greater length.

M. Cook County Board of Commissioner meeting minutes from 11/20/07 through 12/6/07.

Motion was made by Fenwick, seconded by Johnson and carried to approve the County Board

minutes as presented.

Janet Simonen, Personnel Director, noted that Sharon Bloomquist had formally submitted her resignation

from the position of Senior Center Coordinator as of January 15, 2008. Motion was made by Fenwick,

seconded by Hall, and carried to accept Bloomquist’s resignation with regrets. Sharon Bloomquist was

present at the meeting and introduced Mary Flynn, the new Senior Center Coordinator, and Bev Green the

new Senior Center Activity Assistant.

Simonen reported that the Personnel Committee met and reviewed several job descriptions. The

committee recommended that the new Conservation Technician position be given a B22-1 rating; the

revised Fiscal/Income Maintenance Supervisor position be given a C43-1 rating; and the updated

Administrative Office Assistant/Case Aide position be given a B21-1 rating. Motion was made by

Fenwick, seconded by Sobanja, and carried to approve the Personnel Committee recommendations as

presented.

Simonen reported that the Cook County SWCD had completed its interviews and recommended that

Tristan Beaster be hired as the new Conservation Technician at the B22-1 step 1 level for a 35-hour

workweek. Simonen further noted that this position was funded 100% by grant funds. Motion was made

by Sobanja, seconded by Fenwick, and carried to appoint Beaster as the new Conservation Technician by

the following vote: Ayes – Fenwick, Hall, Martinson, and Sobanja. Nays – None. Abstained – Johnson,

citing conflict of interest.

Commissioner Hall moved the adoption of the following resolution and upon seconding by

Commissioner Johnson was adopted by unanimous yea vote of all members present:

RESOLUTION NO. 2008-04

BE IT RESOLVED, that the following claims totaling $ 1,162,302.97 having been audited and

found to be true and correct claims against Cook County, are approved and the Auditor-

Treasurer is hereby authorized to draw warrants in payment of said claims:

Per Deims to be Paid on January 18, 2008 Payroll

Cook County Commissioners

Fenwick/Robert 780.00

Martinson/Bruce 825.00

Sobanja/Fritz 1,050.00

Per Deims to be Paid on January 18, 2008 Payroll

Cook County Soil & Water Conservation District

Hall/James 568.34

Sivertson/Don 100.28

Per Diems to be Paid on January 2, 2008 Payroll

Cook County Commissioners

Hall/Janice 590.00

Johnson/James 675.00

Revenue Fund

A M E M 100.00

A R D C 1,400.00

Arrowhead Regional Correction 17,154.75

Como Oil Co 917.35

Cook County News Herald Inc 28.00

Dalco 81.69

Duluth Area Family U M C A 75.00

Fenwick/Robert 445.17

G & G Septic LLC 253.25

Hicken/Molly 106.70

M A A O 75.00

Martinson/Bruce 840.58

Mid America Business Systems 8,017.30

MN Assn of Townships 15.00

MN Counties Ins Trust 259,675.00

Sawtooth Lumber Inc 49.45

Sobanja/Fritz 861.92

St Louis County 60.00

Stringer Business Systems Inc 1,141.58

Swanson Law Office, P.C. 395.00

West Payment Center 63.90

Wilson/Don 320.00

Road & Bridge Fund

Kosmalski/Sharon 25.00

Building Fund

M Con Inc 6,120.00

Soil & Water Conservation Fund

MN Counties Ins Trust 2,313.00

Early Payables

Arrowhead Electric Cooperative 75.29

Centurytel 88.72

MN Dept of Public Safety 50.00

Public Utilities Commission 332.35

Sturm/Rick 204.25

W D S E TV 20.00

Centurytel 34.21

North Shore Oil Co 24,706.46

Back Office Services Inc 90.00

Clutter/David 35.92

Hedstrom Lumber 248.46

Johnson/Peggy 18.49

Johnsons Foods 390.88

Ludolph/Andrew 8.99

Luenzmann/David 5.98

McIntire/Dale C-Linda Ann 772.00

Pederson/Barbara 28.60

Ridgeway II/James 44.04

Schwecke/Douglas 9.68

Arrowhead Electric Cooperative 819.97

F S H Communications LLC 127.80

Holiday 101.03

Nelson/Tim 80.51

Office of Enterprise Technology 2,849.42

Public Utilities Commission 6,429.72

Qwest 185.54

Arrowhead Electric Cooperative 196.26

Como Oil Co 6,060.70

Cooper/Neal 412.20

Johnson/Francis 52.00

Office of Enterprise Technology 24.72

Public Utilities Commission 871.30

Office of Enterprise Technology 68.87

MN Comm of Finance-Treas Div 402.00

Boreal Access 19.95

Cook County Snowmobile Club 45,360.00

Desant/John E 3,575.00

G M P C S Personal Communication 154.65

Isak Hansen Deputy 074 46.50

Lutsen Trailbreakers 16,848.00

Qwest 531.60

Superior Timber Wolves Sports 6,739.20

Verizon Wireless 27.96

Qwest 219.01

Arrowhead Electric Coop 1,699.16

Boreal Access 34.90

Roy Aero Service 4,300.00

Goodell/M Louise 134.68

Anders/Leon 24.00

Artica Inc 9.21

Bonoff/Barry 106.26

Edlund/Dyle E – Beth J 64.56

Farley/Matthew 11.00

Feiock/W Anthony-Carl 45.90

Fenwick/Robert 25.96

Fitzgerald Trustees/HS-DS 15.78

Havens/Keith 5.12

Margitan/Marie 6.90

Nelson/Gary 18.00

Oyler/Alan 13.90

Raitho/Raymond-Pamela 39.76

Schmidt/David L 35.94

Schueler/Frank 510.16

Warren Family Partnership 26.04

Eigeroy Acres Homeowners Assn 201.00

Centurytel of Minnesota Inc 43.34

Cook Co Grand Marais Joint Ed 1,988.59

Cook County North Shore Hospital 7,777.50

E C S U 93,394.00

Larsen/Irma 61.53

Office of Enterprise Technology 2,685.39

North Shore Oil Co 24,641.25

Office of Enterprise Technology 23.63

Office of Enterprise Technology 91.61

Arrowhead Electric Cooperative 3,055.56

Verizon Wireless 353.84

Ely Area Joint Powers Lodging 3,216.62

Grand Marais/City of 6,075.84

Gunflint Trail Assn 1,722.36

Lutsen Tofte Schroeder Tourism 6,951.94

Cook County Flex Acct 1,344.40

MN Comm of Revenue 420.79

MN Comm of Revenue 1,270.43

MN Comm of Revenue 4.78

Arrowhead Pharmacy 3.00

Baker/Shari 788.81

Berg/Ilena R 112.62

Bloomquist Construction 70.00

Bob Barker Co Inc 349.00

Bucks Hardware Hank 55.22

Como Oil Co 5,183.08

Cook County Council on Aging 2,823.17

Cook County News Herald Inc 479.50

Cook County North Shore Hospital 3,359.00

D S C Communications 19,281.83

Dalco 959.35

David J Smith Trucking 1,275.00

E S C Systems 1,111.10

Edwin E Thoreson Inc 3,752.58

Ege/Duane 2,968.03

Falk/Mark 128.89

Franz Reprographics 594.28

Fryberger Buchannan Smith L T 831.25

G & G Septic LLC 1,749.54

Gestel/Bernard 30.00

Goodell/Donald F 30.00

Grand Marais Auto Parts 99.97

Graybar Inc 338.84

H D Supply Facilities Maintenance 243.81

Haarmeyer/Nancy 48.13

Hall/Janice 307.58

Ikon Office Solutions 1,099.51

Iverson Reuvers LLC 528.00

Jay Carlson Excavating 1,280.00

Johnson/James 641.28

Kuckler/Keith 304.92

Lake County Sheriff 5,450.00

Leef Services 12.78

M O W A 295.00

Mackenzie-Asche/Danna 968.12

McLean/Bonnie 36.79

Marsars Water Rescue Systems 2,849.88

Mathew Bender & Co 67.55

MN Counties Ins Trust 1,787.00

MN County Attorneys Ass 340.00

MN State Auditor 1,299.75

Mobile Vision 339.22

Nalezny/Clair T 49.40

Nelson Machine Products 2,836.40

Northern Door & Hardware Inc 26.63

Northern Wilds Media 738.00

Northland Fire & Safety Inc 2,260.75

Olmsted County Sheriffs Office 80.00

Olson/Richard 413.70

Overhead Door Co of Duluth 377.00

Parker/Samuel 511.39

Pedersons Disposal 243.94

Phillips/Donald 282.18

Pitney Bowes 1,551.85

Priority Dispatch 11,400.00

Quill Corp 797.08

Radisson Hotel Duluth 160.46

Ratwik Roszak & Maloney P A 16.85

Routh/Mary 46.49

Scannell/Timothy 583.88

Software House International 22,588.65

Sopoci/Robert 34.85

Speck/Lloyd 496.43

Sturm/Rick 215.25

Suck/Stanley 118.79

Superior Lumber 54.29

Superiorhealth Pharmacy 21.82

Tomteboda Resort Motel & Cabins 348.08

Tuttle/David 449.52

Twin Ports Paper & Supply 79.82

Verizon Wireless 11.23

Violence Prevention Center 30.00

Voyageurs Communications 29,903.83

W Labor 2,730.00

West Payment Center 1,987.85

Whittet/Kathi 30.00

Wiinanen/James 54.00

Xerox Corp 49.83

Xerox Corp 508.61

University of MN Duluth 1,350.00

E R Perry Signs LLC 266.20

Ege/Duane 300.26

G & G Septic LLC 1.46

Pedersons Disposal 61.43

CCLNS Joint Powers Area Board 9,000.00

Cook County News Herald Inc 36.00

Lutsen Mountains Corp 10,560.25

Devil Track Resort Co Inc 18,199.90

Petty Cash/Aluminum Redemption 252.40

U S Department of State 1,251.00

University of MN 200.00

MN Comm of Transportation 100.00

Northland Bituminous Inc 385,848.97

Cook County Flex Acct 1,520.75

Braidy Powers, Auditor-Treasurer, appeared before the Board with several issues. Powers presented

copies of the 2007 Special Law describing the Fire Aid approved for Cook County as well as a list of

estimated direct costs and future mitigation costs of the Ham Lake Fire that was developed by Cook

County and provided to State lawmakers. Powers reported that County Department Heads will need to

discuss how to use the funds that the County will be receiving. No action was needed at this time.

Commissioner Johnson noted he would attend the Minnesota Arrowhead Association meeting on

January 10, 2008. Commissioner Sobanja noted he attended a Personnel Committee meeting on

January 2, 2008. Commissioner Hall noted that she would be attending a January 25, 2008 Conference

on behalf of the Community Health Board.

Commissioner Fenwick noted that he would be attending two out-of-state meetings by virtue of his

position as Past President for the Association of Minnesota Counties. Cook County would pay for the

costs of travel, hotel, meals, and registration for the NACo Legislative Conference in Washington in

March and the annual NACo meeting in Kansas City, Missouri in August. Motion was made by

Johnson, seconded by Sobanja, and carried to authorize payment for the costs involved for Fenwick to

attend the two NACo meetings on behalf of AMC as well as Cook County.

Commissioner Johnson noted that the Northern Counties Land Use Coordinating Board did not bill

Cook County for Membership dues in 2007 and so will bill full 2008 dues this year, in the amount of

$5,000. No action was needed at this time.

The Commissioners reviewed the 2008 WTIP Radio interview schedule.

Commissioner Sobanja reported that the City of Grand Marais is in the process of drafting a purchase

agreement for property on which to construct a new library. Sobanja said that the City will be asking

whether Cook County will be contributing to the cost of construction. Commissioner Fenwick

suggested that the current City/County Cooperative Agreement regarding the Library be reviewed to

see what obligation currently exists. Fenwick asked that the County Auditor and Attorney review the

current library agreement. Commissioner Sobanja inquired whether the City of Grand Marais could

borrow money from the County in order to purchase the property in a timely fashion. No action was

taken regarding that proposal.

Commissioner Martinson noted that the Duluth News-Tribune was ending its home and retail business

delivery to Cook County on Mondays through Saturdays as of January 14, 2008. Martinson believed

this was a quality of life issue. No action was taken.

Commissioner Martinson inquired whether the County Attorney should be attending the Cook County

Planning Commission meetings. This discussion was tabled to a future County Board meeting.

At 10:55 a.m. a motion was made by Hall, seconded by Fenwick, and carried to close the regular

meeting of the Cook County Board of Commissioners to discuss Local 49 Labor Contract negotiations.

Present for this discussion were all five Commissioners in addition to Personnel Director Simonen and

Auditor-Treasurer Powers.

At 11:45 a.m. a motion was made by Fenwick, seconded by Hall, and carried to end the closed session

and reopen the regular meeting of the Cook County Board of Commissioners.

There being no further business, motion was made and carried that the meeting be adjourned

______________________________

BRUCE MARTINSON,

 

BRAIDY POWERS

Auditor-Treasurer

Chair

Cook County Board of Commissioners

_____________________________

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