MINUTES OF THE BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS REGULAR MEETING HELD ON OCTOBER 14, 2003
The meeting was called to order at 9:00 a.m by Chairman J. R. Dowdy, Jr., with Commissioners James D. Harris, A. James Nance, Joyce C. Pheil, and Ferrell Henry in attendance. Others present were County Administrator Gene Crapse, County Attorney Guy D. Pfeiffer, Finance Director Sherrie Leverett, and secretary Linda Finch. Mr. Nance gave the invocation.
MRS. PHEIL’S COMMENTS
Chairman Dowdy welcomed Joyce Pheil back after her illness, and Mrs. Pheil ask for the opportunity to say thank you for all the acts of love and concern that has been shown her family since her illness, all the cards, food, phone calls, flowers, but especially the prayers, as for almost fifty days her life was in danger and had it not been for the prayers offered up on her behalf, she really doesn’t think she would be sitting here today, and please continue to pray for her.
WELCOME NEW ADMINISTRATOR GENE CRAPSE
Mr. Henry recognized our new Administrator, Gene Crapse, as this is his first official meeting, but he has been with the county about a month now, and we are excited about having Mr. Crapse from Tattnall County, he has several years of experience and had a residence here before he ever drew a paycheck, which speaks well of him, and we are excited about having him here and hope it will be a long and rewarding experience for all of us.
Motion was made by Mr. Nance to approve the September 9, 2003 minutes, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
REZONE REQUEST APPROVED FOR JOHN S. PATE, JR.
Ms. Connie Sangster, Assistant Planning Director, reported that this is the rezoning request decision for John S. Pate, Jr .for Southern Pines Subdivision as we had the public hearing last month, and she then read the eight standards for the checklist rezoning request. Motion was made by Mr. Harris to approve the rezoning of Southern Pines Subdivision from RR to RS1, seconded by Mr. Henry and motion carried unanimously.
PUBLIC HEARING - GREATER ABUNDANCE FAMILY WORSHIP CENTER
Ms. Sangster stated that Greater Abundance Family Worship Center has an existing church now and they want to relocate this church on the property, which is on Dorris Street. She advised that they will purchase this property based on the approval of a Special Use Permit today to locate a church in a RD (Two Family (Duplex) Residential) Zone District. Minister Joanne Dennard stated that they want to use this property for a church, they have a small tabernacle now with about fifty in attendance, they have done some renovations to the building and plan on doing further renovations. Ms. Sangster read the eight standards, and stated that she has not had any calls for or against this request. Chairman Dowdy asked for any public comment, there were none, so he closed the public hearing. Motion was made by Mr. Nance to approve the Special Use Permit to locate a Church/Place of Worship in an RD Zone District, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
PUBLIC HEARING - LOVE STUFF, LLC
Ms. Sangster reported that this request is for Special Use Permit to locate a sexually oriented adult use retail store to be located in a HC (Heavy Commercial) Zone District, property located at 105 Floyd Road. She stated that part of the stipulation is that we have a survey that shows the distances from churches, libraries, schools, etc. and as of last Thursday she did not have the survey and had to remind them of this requirement and all she has from the surveyor is a rushed up statement because he did not get the go ahead until Thursday; it is the Commissioners decision to have the public hearing, but yesterday she had two calls stating that there are two churches located in the vicinity that she was not aware of, nor was the surveyor. She stated that at this point the surveyor is not comfortable to certify that the proper distances have been met. John Pate stated there is a Chapel in the Truckstop across the interstate, and he voiced his concern that we don’t need this kind of thing in our community and especially if we have churches nearby. Chairman Dowdy reported that this is a public hearing and he will give anyone an opportunity to either speak for or against this request, we do need the surveyor to certify these things, but we will go ahead with the public hearing. Ms. Sangster stated that someone said there was a church located in the campground area, it may meet the distance but the surveyor was not comfortable certifying this without doing the groundwork, and that is part of the application process. She advised that the only other question she has is, there is a residence behind this property and across the road it is rural residential also, and she would be more comfortable having a more thorough survey. Ross Winter and Roger Welk, owners of the proposed retail store were present, and Mr. Winter stated that they were not aware of the inadequacy in the survey until this moment, and he feels they should not be penalized based upon this, also concerning the church in the Truckstop, they were not aware of this, but he knows they are well beyond 300 feet of anything, they meet or exceed any requirements set forth by the by-laws and regulations and therefore there is no reason to defer or delay this request. He stated that they have done their research to make sure they are in a proper location, and as far as their store is concerned, they are not a pornography shop, their store caters to couples, they have a soft window front, mannequins that are properly dressed and other items for adults are in a back room, and they protect the right of the state of Georgia on children as they allow no children in the facility. He advised that they are not classified as an adult store based upon percentage of inventory which is less than 20% adult oriented, and they are in a rural area that meets the zoning requirements. Speaking in opposition of the request was Lamar Perlis, owner of Perlis Truckstop across the interstate from the proposed store, and informed Commissioners that he has held several meetings with the Department of Tourism, Department of Agriculture, an architect in Atlanta and others planning a Welcome Center for this interchange, it is a long range plan, and if it materializes, will be an official State of Georgia Welcome Center, and this is in direct conflict with what we are doing here with this type of business. A big issue he said is the zoning does and should allow this county to grow in the fashion that it desires, if this is against the way the county wants to grow, then we must find the legal means of preventing this. Also speaking was Rev. Antwoine Yowe, member of the Crisp Area Ministerial Alliance, and on behalf of the Alliance, they trust that the Commissioners will make the right decision. Ms. Sangster passed around pictures of some of the stores they already have, and Mr. Winter stated that they do not represent what the adult market represents and will operate within normal hours, and it will be no more than Spencer or Victoria Secret Stores, and the landlords, Louis and Larry Perlis, researched this before they granted them the lease. Mr. Welk reported that after completion of his service career, he was a car salesman in the Washington D.C. area, and he had to get out of there, he had an opportunity to move on and that is what brought him here; they found this location, had several talks with the Perlis family to the point that he is in the process of purchasing a home here, it will be a family run business, and will be a store that anyone would feel comfortable walking through the door. Clark Henderson stated that his son lives immediately adjacent to this location, and that if this type of business didn’t cause problems, they would not have taken this type of business out of Times Square in New York and other areas; a problem here is the location and the fact that it will pull certain people off the interstate. Mr. Winter said their billboard campaign is very simple and just says “ Love Stuff Novelties”, and is done in very good taste, plus they have already spent a good deal of money renovating this store. Lamar Perlis thinks this is counter productive to tourism, and wishes they would find another place for this. Janet Pate stated she just found out about it and wonders how many other people in the county know about it. Rev. Dennard stated that she came here because she plans on raising her children in a small community for peace of mind, she thinks we don’t need to be taught how to love anyone, and we fight against things we can’t see. Mr. Winter asked if they did meet all the requirements based upon the Ordinance, and Ms. Sangster stated that she doesn’t have the distance from the north side of the road. Mr. Pfeiffer stated that this application is in a posture that this Board could actually vote on it today and recognizes that a Special Use Permit can be granted at the same meeting, unlike your others that require you to wait until the next meeting. He stated that it is a mandatory requirement in the Ordinance that there be a survey that certifies the distances, you have before you a statement from a surveyor that based on the information they have received, they can’t do that at this time, and prior to receipt of that survey, this Board cannot vote on the Special Use if they are going to enforce their own Ordinance, and actually the survey is suppose to be with the application. He suggested as Ms. Sangster stated that if in fact they are going to grant the Special Use Permit, they may want to consider special stipulations as to items #3 & 9, but they first need the survey that certifies that it is not within 300 feet of a church or residence, which seems to be the issue. Mr. Winter said he was not informed of this until just now, and Ms. Sangster advised that when he came in for the application that was the deadline, and she made a comment to him that she was suppose to have the survey then, but would give him sufficient time to get it at least two weeks before the Commission meeting. Bruce Drennan, Director of the IDC, whose primary job is to attract industry, feels that this would have a very negative impact. Chairman Dowdy stated that the Commissioners have certain rules and regulations that we have to abide by and we are not going to mistreat anyone in any way, all we want to do is go by the regulations, he is sorry there was a misunderstanding, and we can close the public hearing and defer the decision until the next meeting as, according to our Legal Counsel, we can’t take action until we get the necessary paperwork done, and just because you can look and say “I know it is over 300 feet”, that is not sufficient for us, we need it from a surveyor; if they will do that, we can defer it until the November meeting. Mr. Winter said 30 days is a time line of money such as cost of utilities, rent, phone, etc. and he was under the impression that when they sought this location out, and looking at the county plat, they are more than within the guidelines than the county has set forth. Ms. Sangster showed Mr. Winter a copy of the letter from J. B. Faircloth & Associates, he read it, and stated that in reference to what churches, and Ms. Sangster stated that is what someone needs to identify, if there are actually a church in the campground and in the Truckstop. Mr. Pfeiffer said that the Chairman could close the public hearing and take public comment at the next meeting if he wanted to. Mr. Perlis ask them if they would market the merchandise and exclude the back room, and Mr. Winter replied no, it is a complete package. Motion was made by Mr. Nance to close the public hearing, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously. Motion was made by Mr. Henry that in light of need for additional information, to defer the decision until the November meeting, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried.
APPROVE RED RIBBON WEEK PROCLAMATION
Administrator Crapse reported that the Board of Commissioners by Proclamation would like to support Red Ribbon Week on behalf of the Red Ribbon Committee, and then read the Red Ribbon Week Proclamation proclaiming October 23 thru October 31, 2003 as Red Ribbon Week which supports the Red Ribbon Campaign and encourages all to make our community aware that “Real Life is Drug-Free”. He showed the ribbons, that have been provided by the Chamber of Commerce for our employees and to other organizations throughout Crisp County, to wear during this week, and advised that each of the Commissioners also have been provided a ribbon at this time. Alice Worley thanked Commissioners for their continued support, and replied that they are hoping that the whole community will get together this year as never before and support drug-free community. Motion was made by Mr. Nance to approve the Red Ribbon Week Proclamation, seconded by Mr. Henry and motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE RESOLUTION COMMENDING JOHN S. PATE, JR.
Chairman Dowdy stated that Commissioners have already approved the Resolution for Mr. Pate, and ask Mr. Henry to present the Resolution. Mr. Henry stated that John Pate was a great help to him when he became a Commissioner, and, on behalf of the Commissioners, it is his pleasure to present this Resolution commending John S. Pate, Jr. as County Administrator from March 21, 2002 to August 1, 2003 to Mr. Pate. Mr. Henry read the Resolution. Mr. Pate thanked Commissioners for the opportunity to serve the citizens of Crisp County and hopes that someday he can find a way to serve again.
2003 CDBG BLOCK GRANT
Don tenBensel, Middle Flint RDC Director, reported that he and Mr. Harris recently traveled to Savannah to pick up the 2003 CDBG Block Grant in the amount of $450,000.00 for street improvements within the central part of the Newtown neighborhood. He advised that in the budget for this project, there is $8,500.00 for property acquisition, $383,740.00 for street improvements, $29,760.00 for contingencies and $28,000.00 for administration and audit; there is one special condition where prior to initiation of the design, the engineer must identify the design standards being utilized for both street and drainage construction and must also address any downstream impacts resulting from the proposed drainage construction, and that is being taken care of. He advised that the general conditions state we have to do an environmental review, and that street improvement design and construction will be in accordance with at least the minimum D.O.T. standards. Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to approve the Resolution Authorizing the Acceptance of a $450,000 FY 2003 CDBG Block Grant from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs which authorizes the Chairman to sign all of the needed grant papers, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE ENGINEERING CONTRACT FOR 03 GRANT
Mr. tenBensel stated that the engineering contract is for $27,500.00, which was agreed upon by the Commissioners a few months ago, and the contract is with Hodges, Harbin, Newberry & Tribble. Motion was made by Mr. Henry to accept the Engineering Contract for the 03 Grant with Hodges, Harbin, Newberry & Tribble in the amount of $27,500.00 and giving Chairman Dowdy the authority to sign the necessary paperwork, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE ADMINISTRATION CONTRACT FOR 93 GRANT
Mr. tenBensel stated that the second contract is with Middle Flint Regional Development Center for the administration of the 03 Grant Project in the amount of $27,000.00, and it is the standard contract that they have used year after year. Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to accept the Administration Contract with Middle Flint RDC in the amount of $27,000.00 for the 03 Grant, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
UPDATE ON THE 01 GRANT
Mr. tenBensel stated that on the 01 Grant, the Newtown Sewer Phase II, the contractor has just submitted a draw of $65,600.00, now we have $8,293.30 yet unobligated, and, according to the engineer, when they do the final change order there will be some reductions in his actual cost because of some things that they worked out and that will be around $12,000.00 yet to spend. He advised that we have until December 31 to spend that money, and he will be working with the County Administrator to try to get that money obligated. Mr. Newberry, engineer, said the contractor was at the point now he is going back and cleaning and dressing up the project, and if Commissioners hear about any problem area, please let them know.
UPDATE ON 02 GRANT
Mr. tenBensel stated that on the 02 Grant, the Youth and Family Resource Center, Mr. Gamble and his crew have completed the building site and are ready to turn it over to the contractor. Mr. Pfeiffer stated that he has the copies of the contract from WBM Construction from Metter, which was the low bidder, for $428,960.00, which includes the proper performance and payment bonds attached to the contract, and he would recommend that the county accept the contract authorizing the execution of the contract. Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to accept the Contract with WMB Construction for $428,960.00 and authoring the Chairman to execute the contract, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
Mr. tenBensel stated that in regards to the 04 CDBG Grant, Commissioners have decided to try to get into resolving the water and sewer problems in the Omar Heights and Meadow Park areas, and he would like to suggest that Commissioners consider approving some up front money as we need two things: 1) an engineering evaluation of the two private water systems, he has a proposal from Hodges, Harbin, Newberry & Tribble in the amount of $900.00 on this, who Commissioners have already accepted as the engineers for the application, and 2) a formal appraisal of the two water systems as a business, he has called all over and only gotten one bid from Slappey Appraisal in Americus at $1,595.00 each, as this is an odd situation. He also stated that when you apply for the funds you have to put up a match and leverage, and this money can count as leverage, which is far less that what they normally put in as leverage, and without this he really can’t do the application, because we need to know how much we will have to pay for the water systems. Motion was made by Mr. Henry to find the money and move forward with this project, seconded by Mr. Nance and motion carried unanimously.
UPDATE ON APPEALS PROCESS
Tim Quick, Chief Appraiser, Floyd Hudgins, W. M. Davis, Cecil Bagwell and Sammy Hill, Assessors, met with Commissioners to give a status report on the tax digest and the appeals process. Mr. Quick stated that after the revaluation for the 2003 tax digest, they sent out approximately 8,000 to 9,000 property assessment notices, of those notices as of the first 45 day appeal period ending there were 1067 total appeals. He advised that of those, 147 have been resolved or withdrew their appeal, 380 have been reviewed, 55 appeals have been processed in the office and have to be sent another 21 day notice time period to accept or appeal, 77 reviews to be scheduled for the Board of Equalization, they have already forwarded 80 appeals and BOE has set hearing dates, 282 of the 21 day notices have been mailed, and 46 are waiting review from the commercial contractor that did these appraisals. He informed Commissioners that based on the returns of taxpayers that are continuing to file their appeals, they are finding that about 20% of the ones that were mailed second notices are actually filing appeals, and based on this, of the first 282 that will be up in November, they are expecting probably 50 to 60 appeals, and of the 484 still outstanding, they are expecting possibly 100 appeals from this mailing. He stated that the taxpayer by law has the right to appeal their property value, if they make an adjustment to that, then they are required to send them a 21 day notice and must afford them the 21 day time to appeal that value, and based on these figures, and if everything holds true, there is probably a total of less than 300 that will actually go to the Board of Equalization. Mr. Henry stated that it was unfortunate that we had to go this process but this is the process, and he hopes in the future that we can put all our resources and references together and not let this happen again as far as where we are today. Mrs. Pheil asked if they had an explanation about how we got this late, and Mr. Quick stated that there were several reasons: 1) magnitude of what they did, 2) expertise of the staff, which they have only two qualified appraisers, they did hire out the commercial and industrial properties to an independent appraisal firm, but he promised Commissioners that they have worked as diligently as they possible could to get as far along as they have. Mr. Quick said there has not been a complete property revaluation since he came on board in 1998, he cannot tell from the records that are available how long before that property was revalued, but just from talking with people it appears that it was somewhere around 1996; the way to avoid this happening again is to hire experienced people in the appraisal business, and they have tried to do this. Mrs. Pheil asked if it was not practical to do a certain number of properties per year instead of having it all come up in one year, and Mr. Quick said you can do that to the point that your sales indicate that the studies show that a particular neighborhood needs adjusting, if sales indicate that all your properties are now valued at 30% instead of 40%, you cannot go into a particular neighborhood and adjust it this year and next year adjust another neighborhood, the law will not allow you to do that nor he doesn’t think the taxpayers will allow this, you have to take all of those into consideration and do them all at once. He stated you can look at individual classes of property and see which classes need revaluing and just revalue that particular class if you have the data to back that up, and he and this Board agreed that all the properties are valued at their fair market value. Mrs. Pheil asked how long he thought it would be before he had all of his information complete so Mrs. Adkins can start collecting some money, and Mr. Quick replied that because they are legally bound to give these folks this time frame, we cannot expect to have a digest until the appeal period has run it’s course, and based on the assumption that they will have an additional 300 appeals to go to the BOE, he assumes at least a month. Mrs. Adkins stated when we get the digest, she can take it to Atlanta and, based on their approval, she can send bills within the week, it is a long process, it has been diligently worked, and she hopes people will not be too anxious because the law does not allow her to take money until she gets a digest. Mr. Harris replied that he hopes Crisp County does not go through this again next year, and Mr. Quick promised that he and the Board are working as diligently as they can to make sure this doesn’t happen again. Mr. Henry said that Commissioners understand the additional requirements on revaluation, we certainly are not the only county in the State of Georgia with a late digest, and thanked the Board and Mr. Quick for their hard work. Mr. Nance stated he would like to be in the percentage that is not late, and he appreciates the job they do. Mr. Hudgins stated that they have had a real problem in getting good help to stay with them and do the job, and hopefully they can work that out. Chairman Dowdy thanked them for coming in, and stated that we can get a digest before all these things are settled if we are in the percentage that the law allows, and Mr. Quick stated that the regulations state in the year of revaluation, we can have 5% appeals not settled to get a digest approved.
APPROVE RESOLUTION FOR SHORT TERM WORK PROGRAM
Administrator Crapse reported that this is a routine action to forward the draft plan of the Short Term Work Program to the state and region for review, the draft plan was reviewed in a public hearing which included the engineer and Solid Waste Department head, plus Charles Jones, Landfill Attorney, has reviewed the Resolution and approved it for submission to the Board, and he recommends the Board approve this Resolution. Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to adopt the Resolution Authorizing Submission of Transitional Update to Short Term Work Program, seconded by Mr. Henry and motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE RESOLUTION TO ESTABLISH A SECOND BOARD OF EQUALIZATION
Administrator Crapse advised that this Resolution is action that will allow us to expedite the appeals that go through the Board of Equalization, it is within the statue where the number of parcels exceed 10,000. He advised that this Board is appointed by the Grand Jury, Judge Forrestor has granted an order to call the Grand Jury in to appoint the second board at 9:00 a.m. on October 27th, and once those members are appointed, they will be sworn in by the Clerk of Court, charged by the Judge, and if they have had the school already, they can go to work immediately, but if not, there is a school the first week of November that they can go to. He stated that by the times the appeals process is completed, we will be able to move straight into those appeals that go to the Board of Equalization and essentially double the output, and he would recommend that the Board approve this Resolution. Motion was made by Mr. Henry to adopt the Resolution To Establish A Second Board of Equalization and giving Chairman Dowdy the authority to sign the Resolution, seconded by Mr. Nance and motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE RESOLUTION FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF TRAVEL EXPENSE
Administrator Crapse reported that at the September meeting, the Board indicated that they wanted to stay with the state regarding reimbursement to employees for business travel expense, they have confirmed that the state rate is $.28, this Resolution establishes the rate for the county and provides that the rate be updated annually to be consistent with the state rate but not to exceed the federal rate. Motion was made by Mr. Henry to adopt the Resolution setting the mileage reimbursement rate for county employees, seconded by Mrs. Pheil and motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING SIGNATURES
Administrator Crapse reported that this is a Resolution to allow him to sign checks and it doesn’t change the system just allows his name to be on the signature card. Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to adopt the Resolution authorizing Administrator Crapse’s name on the signature cards, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING SIGNATURE STAMPS
Mrs. Leverett reported that this Resolution would authorize the county office to use a facsimile stamp of Commissioners on accounts payable and payroll checks provided that have a detail listing of that run of checks, and Commissioners will sign off on the report before we will be able to use the signature stamp. Mr. Crapse said it is done individually by Commissioner, so they could opt in or opt out. Motion was made by Mr. Nance to adopt the Resolution authorizing signature stamps for Commissioners if they so desire, seconded by Mr. Henry and motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE CHANGES IN THE HEALTH PLAN
Administrator Crapse reported that the proposed changes to the County’s Joint Health Plan are included in the meeting packets along with some backup data showing general trends, impact and similar cost in another county. The changes they are addressing today are as follows: 1) Employee will begin contributing $10/pay period for employee health coverage; 2) Employee payment for dependent coverage will increase by 5% ($4.48/pay period for dependent coverage); 3) Total cost to an employee with dependent coverage will be about $25.00 a month because of before tax deductions; 4) Employer payment for dependent coverage will increase by 5% ($7.48/pay period for dependent coverage about $12,000 annually); 5) The effective date for the contribution changes will be November 1, 2003; 6) The co-pay on mail order prescriptions will go from $20 generic & $30 brand name to $40 generic & $60 brand name; 7) A formulary program will be implemented that will change the co-pay on local provider prescriptions from $20 generic & $30 brand name to $20 generic, $30 preferred brand name & $45 non-preferred brand name; 8) The effective date for the prescription co-pay changes will be January 1, 2004; 9) Maximum out-of-pocket amount per calendar year will change from $2500 In-Network and $5000 Non-Network to $2500 In-Network and $10,000 Non-Network, The out-of-pocket amounts do not cross apply, so the maximum exposure to the employee will be $12,500 per person covered; 10) Services for In-Network or Non-Network will be applied regardless of mileage to obtain In-Network services; 11) Services provided by Non-Network provider will not be covered at the In-Network rate even if an In-Network provider refers the covered person; 12) The effective date for the out-of-pocket and In-Network provider changes is with the plan year, November, 2003; 13) Due to the changes in plan coverage the “open season” for electing plan changes should be extended until October 31, 2003. He advised that also in their packet was a budget impact statement, a caparison of another county plus some articles about how heath care is impacting everyone, hopefully we can address this earlier next year, and as much as he doesn’t want to, he feels like it is necessary that he recommends these changes so that we can insure that this plan stays solvent. Also, he advised that if there is any savings from this plan, he would like to see it returned to the county employees. Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to approve the insurance changes and allowing any savings in the plan be returned to the employees, seconded by Mr. Henry and motion carried unanimously.
Mrs. Leverett stated that they have the August report before them, the General Fund expenditures are at about 15 % of it’s budget, which is within the percentage it should be, but the revenues are not there yet and still down under 10%. She advised that they have made two draws on the GEFA Loan at present, and SPLOST revenue is still coming in on an average of $267,000 monthly.
APPROVE 2003 BUDGET ADJUSTMENTS
Mrs. Leverett stated that they have the 2003 budget adjustments before them, and she needs approval for these, a lot of this is housekeeping from confusion from the new chart of accounts to grant activity that went on during the year that was not included in the original budget, plus there is some reallocation of funds from department to department. Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to approve the 2003 budget adjustments, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
Administrator Crapse stated that each has a copy of his written report, a few things they may not be aware of is: 1) we have already talked about the bid opening for the State Patrol, 2) environmental assessment goes to the IDC today on the tower so the RBEG grant can go forward, 3) YDC has announced that they will begin to fill the anticipated 75 jobs soon, 4) he has a meeting on October 29th with Hershey Meter Company about the water meter issues, 5) Commissioner Henry, Carl Gamble, Sherrie Leverett and himself met to try to develop a vehicle utilization, retention, and replacement strategy for developing a policy along with input from the Department Heads and Constitutional Officers that have SPLOST vehicles, so that they can come up with a policy for the Board, 6) Commissioners Pheil and Henry had previously begun to work on some financial policies that need updating, and he would like to continue this process with the Finance Director and asked Commissioner Nance to join that effort in developing an updated policy for presentation to the Board, 7) County’s centennial celebration will be in August, 2005, and with the Board’s permission, he would like to establish a centennial committee to plan the county’s 100th Birthday Celebration, he knows Commissioner Pheil is a history buff, he would like her as well as any other Commissioner to be a part of this committee, 8) he is working with City Manager Burnette to set up an initial meeting of the City-County Planning Committee, 9) Public Safety Appreciation Dinner is in a couple of weeks, let him know, and he will rsvp for all that want to go, and 10) he expressed his sincere thanks to all the Commissioners, to John Pate and all the Department Heads for help, guidance and understanding for his first terrific month here.
Hal Newberry, engineer, stated that earlier in the year we had a lot of rain that slowed down work at the landfill, things dried out and they expected to see a lot more production on the construction of the two cells, but it really hasn’t moved the way they thought things would. He said the contractor has had a lot of problems with his equipment, and there were some other things that they were unhappy about with the way construction was proceeding. He advised that last Thursday, he, George Gay, and Mr. Crapse, had a meeting with the contractor, the meeting was very blunt and frank, and he thinks the contractor understands that they are not happy and expect to see some changes. He said one thing they expect him to do is to give them a weekly report on the status of the work, the contract time will end November 7th, his schedule that he gave them gives them a completion date of about the middle of December and they don’t think he can do it then unless he really puts a lot more effort into it. Administrator Crapse ask if we were going to run out of capacity before this job is complete, and Mr. Newberry said we do have airspace but when you get up higher and it is more difficult to get it up there.
GO INTO EXECUTIVE SESSION
Motion was made by Mr. Harris to go into Executive Session to discuss personnel and real estate, seconded by Mr. Nance and motion carried unanimously.
COME OUT OF EXECUTIVE SESSION
Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to come out of Executive Session, seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
ONE WEEK VACATION FOR MR. PATE
Motion was made by Mr. Henry to give Mr. Pate one week’s vacation pay at the pay rate he was making when employeed by the Commissioners, seconded by Mrs. Pheil and motion carried unanimously.
DISCUSS SPLOST REALLOCATION
Mr. Pfeiffer reported that he has a letter of opinion from Richard Woodward regarding the allocation of SPLOST proceeds to build the State Patrol Building. He advised that we need to find out how much RBEG Grant we are going to receive so we can do the portion of the tower in SPLOST that is not in the RBEG, plus the E-911 computer equipment; we can then take the eighteen projects and adjust those. He stated that Mr. Woodward advised that this does not require a public hearing to reallocate the funds, but it will require an action by this Board, and also require an amendment to the contract between the county and the City of Cordele and Town of Arabi. Commissioners authorized Mr. Pfeiffer and Mrs. Leverett to get together and come up with a Contract Admendment for Cordele and Arabi, so that we can approve it at our next regular meeting. He stated that after this, the funds will be available for Commissioners to accept the State Patrol Contract.
Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to adjourn the meeting at 12:18 p.m., seconded by Mr. Harris and motion carried unanimously.
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