County officials gain valuable knowledge and insight from each other and from content leaders at a variety of events hosted by NDACo throughout the year, including three major events:
Annual Conference & Expo
Held every October, the conference is open to all county officials, and features workshops, keynote speakers and exhibits from vendors and partners.
County Officials Academy
In election years, NDACo offers an introduction to county government for newly elected officials and as a refresher for veteran officials.
A full-day review of significant changes in laws and funding affecting counties, held after the close of each session of the state legislature.
H.R. Conference for Local Government
Every even-numbered year (non-legislative years) NDACo partners with cities, schools, parks and other local government entities to offer a two day conference on Human Resources.
There is power in numbers. The County Employers Group combines all counties together as one large employer, rather than 53 separate, smaller employers. Working together as an employers group provides significant savings through reduced workers compensation insurance premiums. Plus, the CEG’s highly successful safety program and claims management program have produced lower injury rates and faster return-to-work times, preventing further losses of time, money, and resources.
All employers, including county governments, are required by federal law to conduct annual tests for controlled substance and/or alcohol use among their personnel whose work involves the use of a Commercial Drivers License. NDACo helps counties come into complete compliance with the law (the Omnibus Testing Act of 1991) by pooling counties together and handling administration of a single compliance program.
NDACo saves counties money on purchases by contracting or partnering with a host of vendors and suppliers. Some of these arrangements are part of our membership in the National Association of Counties, while others are a result of our direct negotiations. Following is a partial list of some of the organizations with which we have discount arrangements:
Outlook Vision Services, Nationwide Retirement Solutions, ND Insurance Reserve Fund, Abacus Cost Services, Special Operations Team Reimbursement Fund and the U.S. Communities program of the National Association of Counties.
The Human Resources Service Program for our counties works with counties on a variety of projects including updating employee handbooks, assisting counties with interviewing/hiring, job description development, grievance/discipline process development, drafting/reviewing employee policies and handbooks, and training on HR topics through ILG. NDACo is a founding member of the North Dakota Human Resources Collaboration for Local Government. To learn more about the Collaborative, please visit www.hrndgov.org.
County officials can improve their job skills and meet legislatively mandated training requirements by taking courses offered by the Institute of Local Government, a subsidiary of NDACo. ILG organizes and conducts classes and workshops with input from our member associations. These classes are offered at the events listed above and throughout the year through webinars. Webinar courses are recorded so they can be taken later for those who cannot attend the live event.
NDACo and the ND Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation Division of Juvenile Services formed a partnership to help counties apply for and administer federal and state grant programs for juvenile delinquency prevention and enforcement. The program assists with a variety of delinquency and youth development activities involving other government and community-based organizations.
NDACo’s original purpose—legislative lobbying—remains a priority service today. NDACo’s reputation as a fair and forward-thinking representative of local government has earned respect among legislators and the media. Our legislative staff uses a powerful interactive Web-based tool to track major bills of interest to counties and alert officials to major developments.
The services of NDACo are often requested by county, city, and state government, and even private companies and other associations. To serve those needs without interfering with our status as a non-profit association, NDACo created a subsidiary corporation called NDACo Resources Group. NDACo Resources Group (NRG) performs technology support for NDACo and for many counties, including network and server administration, managed services, video surveillance, and offsite backup and disaster recovery. Working with NRG for tech support ensures counties that they will receive the most competitive purchasing prices, thanks to NRG's partnerships with Microsoft, Hewlett Packard and other vendors. NRG’s list of services continues to grow as they seek ways to benefit counties and the other clients they serve.
Sharing information is vital to counties. NDACo keeps counties informed, not only about NDACo activities, but also with important news about other counties, the National Association of Counties, and other current affairs affecting county government. To keep county leaders informed, NDACo produces several publications, including an Annual Report, County Budget Memo, County News, County Officials Directory, Leader Letter, Salary & Fringe Benefit Survey, a Web site and other electronic and printed communications.
Properly and legally managing the enormous number of records stored in county offices is a tremendous challenge. NDACo maintains links to the ND Information Technology Division on-line Records Retention Schedule for each department of county government, which can be found HERE.
NDACo and the ND Dept. of Transportation have formed a partnership dedicated to improving traffic safety, with the ultimate goal of "Zero Deaths." Learn more about how this program can help your county employees and county residents buckle up and drive safe.
Those accused of Driving Under the Influence of drugs or alcohol can hire a defense attorney who specializes in the field. Such specialized help often makes it difficult for State’s Attorneys to effectively prosecute these cases. With funding provided by the ND Department of Transportation, NDACo created a program which creates a specialized resource prosecutor to help local prosecutors deal with the complexities of DUI cases. Some ways the Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor can help is by providing training and technical assistance on the methods of evidence gathering, including newly emerging technology and trial techniques. This resource is available to all state, local and county law enforcement personnel.
County emergency services respond to crises and save lives every day. As more people use wireless telephones as a primary means of communication, it is vitally important that wireless technologies, including global positioning satellite (GPS) are coordinated throughout the state. North Dakota’s statewide wireless 9-1-1 coordination is provided by NDACo. With the cooperation of county emergency services across the state, North Dakota was among the first states to provide Phase II wireless 9-1-1 service in all 9-1-1 jurisdictions, which means most cell phone callers dialing 9-1-1 can be located by GPS, greatly aiding dispatchers and emergency responders in reaching individuals in crisis.