MINUTES OF THE CRISP COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
MEETING HELD ON DECEMBER 12, 2006
The meeting was called to order at 9:00 a.m. by Chairman Ferrell Henry, with Commissioners James D. Harris, A. James Nance, Joyce C. Pheil, and Brad Faircloth in attendance. Others present were County Administrator Lester E. Crapse, Jr., County Attorney David Forehand, Finance Director Sherrie Leverett, and Secretary Linda Finch. Rev. Leonard Boston, pastor of the Spring Hill Baptist Church gave the invocation, and Administrator Crapse led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America.
Motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to approve the minutes of the meeting of November 14, 2006, seconded by Mr. Harris, motion carried unanimously.
COOPERATING AGREEMENT FOR NORBOARD EXPANSION EIP APPLICATION
Administrator Crapse reported that this is a cooperative agreement with the City of Cordele, because of the properties involved, Norboard, as well as Owens Corning, and there is a lot of interaction between the City and the County. Part of the property is in the city and part is in the county; the county is doing the work and the county needs to be the lead agency for the IDC and IDA on the grant, and that is why the need for the cooperative agreement. The City of Cordele has already signed the agreement, and he recommends the Board adopt the Cooperative Agreement in order to pursue the EIP grant for the Norboard expansion. Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to adopt the Cooperating Agreement between the City of Cordele and the County for Norboard expansion for the EIP Application, seconded by Mr. Faircloth, motion carried unanimously.
RENEWAL OF PERSONAL PROPERTY VERIFICATION PROGRAM CONTRACT
Tim Quick, Chief Tax Assessor, reported that the Board of Assessors was asked to rebid the contract for the personal property verification program. He advised that there are three companies in the state of Georgia that he is familiar with that does this type work; 1) Mendolla and Associates, 2) Traylor Business Services, and 3) Tax Management Associates. He contacted all three and ask for bids and what services they would provide. He stated that the companies were basically identical as to the services they would perform, the differences being how they charged for the services. Mendolla has their charges broken into six accounts, the number of accounts in each category, and prices for each for a three year program; their total fees for the 955 accounts would be $393,800. Traylor Business Services, our current vendor, has theirs broken into five accounts with the same 955 accounts, their total would be $400,300, plus a 5% reduction if the bill is paid within ten days. He has checked with Finance, and we are taking advantage of that 5%, so that brings their total cost to $380,332.50. Tax Management and Associates did not want to bid. He advised that we are in the third year of a three year program now; Traylor has performed 166 personal property verification audits, we have paid them $111,722, and they have discovered $39,833,997 that was not on the returns, and their projection stated that should be a return of $673,670.79. Administrator Crapse stated that he thinks this is a necessary thing that governments have to do, and they have asked the Tax Commissioner to keep this in a separate book so that we could track them. Looking at October 5th, we paid $111,722 to Traylor and when the Tax Commissioner went through this, we have actually recovered $117,345 out of that total of around $600,000, which means we are making money, but not much as some are in appeals and some we just have to write off, but we don't know exactly why the collection numbers are so far off from what has been discovered. Motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to renew the contract with Traylor Business Services in order for discussion purposes, seconded by Mr. Nance. Robert Powell, member of the Board of Tax Assessors, advised that their Board has met and reviewed all the bids, and recommend that Traylor Business Services be accepted. Their responsibility as a Tax Assessor is to properly appraise and value the properties in the county. Mr. Faircloth advised that looking at this from a business prospective, we are paying people $111,000 to double check our people, and our net return is $6,000 to $8,000 to date, and he has a hard time with this if this is all we get. Administrator Crapse reported that is why we started keeping these separately because there was no visibility as it was with all the other tax payments that came in until last year. He advised that as long as we are in a net positive mode, we are getting the benefit of a double check, if you don't ever do this at all, just image what might happen. He does think we need to try to find out why the margin is so different from what is projected to what is actually collected. Mr. Quick advised that this did not start out to be a profitable program, it was an equalization program to make sure that all was paying what they should. Also, he advised that on the $673,670.79 number, the county is only going to get about half of that because the school board and state are going to get a portion of that. He advised that initially, they checked to see if the city and school board would be willing to participate in this, at that time they were not, but now we have some history behind us, it may be advantageous for us to approach them again and see if they are willing to pay part of this fee. He recommends that the Commissioners go forward with the contract, as the contract is based on the money allocated by the Commissioners. Mr. Powell advised that with each personal property audit, a survey is sent out, time after time one of the comments on the survey is we have learned something from this, these forms are complicated and a lot of people don't understand the form, but these auditors have helped explain these forms, so they have had a tremendous amount of positive feedback from these audits and very few negative comments, and these people do their jobs. Mr. Faircloth and Mr. Nance withdrew their original motion and second, and motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to accept the contract with Traylor Business Serv ices, seconded by Mr. Harris, motion carried unanimously.
SECURITY SYSTEM FOR MIDDLE FLINT BEHAVIORAL HEALTH CARE BUILDING
Administrative Crapse reported that he has a letter from Middle Flint Behavioral Health Care for a security system for their building, it is a new and unfunded request. In their letter they indicate that they are troubled by state cuts and funding, and this security system that they are requesting is not a state requirement, it is simply a local request. The low bid was $3,245 from Pro Tech, and they are asking for the county's assistance in helping get this security system installed. He advised that the Board could provide all, or some, or none at all, and the funding could come from the General Fund contingency, or it could come from the 2000 SPLOST County Buildings. Mr. Henry advised that he supports this but it does concern him that when we have someone come in the middle of a budget year to request money. Administrator Crapse reported that what generated this was the building had been broken into. Motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to grant $3,245 for the security system at the Middle Flint Behavioral Health Care building from the 2000 SPLOST, County Buildings, seconded by Mrs. Pheil, motion carried unanimously.
GEMA LOCAL ASSISTANCE GRANT FOR SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT VEHICLE LAPTOPS
Administrator Crapse reported that the Sheriff's Department has requested that the county pay $39,377.50 in advance of receiving twenty car laptops on a total contract of $78,755. The money is to be provided by a GEMA grant. It is our policy not to pay the items until they are received, so he didn't feel comfortable with approving this without the Board's approval. This is a reimbursable grant, which means you have to send in your proof of payment to get the reimbursement, plus if we don't do this right away, we might be at the end of the line and have to wait a long time before we are able to get the laptops. Motion was made by Mrs. Pheil to approve the request of $39,377.50 to the Sheriff's Department for twenty car laptop computers, seconded by Mr. Faircloth, motion carried unanimously.
SELECTION OF THE THIRD PARTY OPERATOR FOR CRISP AREA TRANSIT 5311 PROGRAM - RMS
Administrator Crapse reported that the first of November we sent out request for proposals for a 5311 transit Third Party Operator; we received two proposals, one from our current provider, DCUTS, and one from Resource Management Systems, Inc. The proposals are in their packet, and he summarized the selection criteria that was in the RFP: 1) General experience in transportation service - DCUTS has been providing this service for six years and in two counties; RMS has been providing these services for ten years and in six counties; 2) Qualifications and experience of key personnel - DCUTS has at least six years experience, RMS staff has a total of seventy-five years in public transportation; 3) Fleet management capability, maintenance dispatching, training and supervising - DCUTS and RMS are about the same with the exception that RMS has a full time mechanic on staff on call 24 hours a day; 4) Competitiveness of price relative to level of service - DCUTS has a local match requirement of $35,426, there will be no requirement of any contribution from RMS; and 5) Financial stability - DCUTS does have $96,000 worth of long-term debt as of June 30, 2006, RMS has been profitable every year it has been in business and has no long-term debt. He advised that hopefully this selection will run consistent with the expanded budget for the state, which is eighteen months beginning January 1, 2007 and ending June 30, 2008. DCUTS does have the annual contract for the DHR contracts. Mr. Faircloth asked if the level of service is comparable to what we have been receiving, and Administrator Crapse stated that based on several counties he has talked to, they are pleased with their service from RMS, and they have agreed to everything in our proposal, including our operating hours. After discussion and based on the information, motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to accept the low bid from RMS for the Crisp Area Transit 5311 Program, seconded by Mrs. Pheil, motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE APPLICATION FOR BEER AND WINE LICENSE FOR JACKSON KRAUSE
Administrator Crapse reported we have received an application for a beer and wine license for 2007 from Jackson Krause, the location will be the old Striplings Store on Hwy. 300 South, and the store will be doing business as Salt Link Sausage Company. The Sheriff has completed the required background check and recommended approval of the licenses, also, there is a copy of the required $900 check that was submitted with the application; and he recommend the Board approve the licenses for Mr. Krause. Motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to approve the Beer and Wine License for Jackson Krause, seconded by Mr. Harris, motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE THE HOLIDAY SCHEDULE FOR 2007
Administrator Crapse reported that in their packet there is a list of the 2007 Crisp County holiday schedule, and he recommends the Board approve these days as the official holiday schedule for 2007 for employees of Crisp County. Motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to approve the 2007 Crisp County employee holiday schedule, seconded by Mr. Harris, motion carried unanimously. Motion was made by Mr. Harris to
close the operations of the county at 12:00 noon on the Friday before the 2006 Christmas Holidays, seconded by Mr. Faircloth, motion carried unanimously.
Mrs. Leverett stated that her report covers the financial status for the county as of November 30, 2006. The General Fund report of revenues and expenditures reports revenues of $510,744 for November and $3,758,494 year to date, monthly expenditures of $951,486 and year to date expenditures of $4,757,280. Those numbers bring revenues to 27.7% and expenditures to 35.06% of annual budget. Expenditures continue to exceed revenues by $998,786 through November 30th, which is normal for this time frame. Cash reserves remain adequate to support daily operations until property taxes are collected. For the Landfill Fund, we are reporting $95,071 I monthly revenues and $660,402 in revenues year to date, $81,206 in expenditures for the month of November and $624,081 year to date. Revenues ended the month at 38.23%, expenditures at 32.89% of annual budget leaving the landfill fund with a year to date net gain of $36,322. The total tonnage received for the month of October was 3,349.85 tons. Approximately 50% of that was received from Onyx under their commercial contract and 15% under the City of Cordele free residential contract. The tonnage for November was about 600 tons less than the Fiscal Year 2006 monthly average, 206 tons less than November of 2005 and 317 tons less than the previous month of October. The principal balance on the GEFA Loans is current at $4,089,096. The Water Fund recorded monthly revenues of $29,304, YTD revenues of $189,814. November expenditures totaled $25,752, YTD expenditures of $167,371 leaving it with a net gain at the end of November of $22,443. Water usage for the month was 4,261,000 gallons, and the USDA Bonds are current at $1,778,605. Cash on hand in the General Fund was $4,441,665, the Landfill Fund at $2,377,9905, the Revolving Loan Fund at $477,428, the SPLOST Funds at $4,303,939, and the Water Fund ended the month with $808,425 giving a county wide total of $12,409,363. Of that, $121,530 is reserved for debt service, $53,380 for customer deposits, $4,303,939 for capital projects and $455,000 of the RLF balance has been committed to project Golden. In the budget to actual report for the 2000 SPLOST Issue, as of November 30th, we have spent $13.9 million of the $17.6 million collected, leaving us with $3,713,386 to complete the various City and County projects associated with this issue. In the SPLOST budget to actual by category summary report for the 2005 Issue, to date we have total collections of $3,639,230, total expenditures for projects associated with this issue of $2,964,374. This month's revenue receipt of $451,758 brings our monthly average up to $404,359. In the monthly detail listing of all the SPLOST fund expenditures both issues, total disbursements were $624,110. November was a busy month for Splost dollars. The largest amounts distributed were $339,080 on county roads, $172,627 on the BBSB Complex, $55,861 in pro rate share to the City of Cordele and $41,941 in pro rata share and city streets for the Town of Arabi. In the CDBG Revolving Loan Fund monthly report, which includes the balance and status of all our CDBG Revolving Loan Fund Accounts, we have nine outstanding loans with a total balance due of $1,540,363. Six are current and two are seriously delinquent. (W did receive a payment from Ga. Stair and Rail on Friday, so we are happy to report that they are now actually current). To give you an update on the Verrick property, which we now own jointly with Ameris Bank, with Carl's assistance, the property has been secured with new locks, pictures have been taken and Eli (Ameris) is proceeding to engage an auction company as quickly as possible to handle the sale for us. The last report included in your packet is the revenues by fund and expenditure by department report for the period of July through November, 2006. The summary report shows the expended percentage of appropriations for each individual department and the total for each fund. As of November 30th, all departments and divisions should be within 42% of their annual allowances. Overall, as of November 30th, the General Fund was at 35%, the Water Fund at 30%, and the Landfill Fund at 33%.
Administrator Crapse reported that 1) he attended several meetings and events this month; 2) there were two new SPLOST expenditures approved this month, both for the Airport, one for engineering design for the T-Hanger Taxiway. This is a $50,628 project with $1,266 of local county funds; the other for $6,200 for upgrading the fuel system card reader that has failed several times this year and repair parts that are hard to get resulting in lengthy down time; 3) work on the Youth Ball Complex is still moving forward. The curb and gutter work will begin this week at the Complex. Sports lighting fixtures will be delivered to CCPC this week and the poles will be delivered December 18, 19 & 20. The final construction drawings are ready for bid. We just need to let the architect know what we want on the buildings. We have funding shortfalls, but we are beginning a community fund drive. This is our other "Big Ticket" item, besides the courthouse, and we should have funds to cover the overages in the final analysis, however, the Board will have to approve these expenses individually because they are over budget. Concession/Restroom/Scorer buildings are estimated at $153,775 & $133,400 respectively for the 5-side & 4-side buildings, or $287,175. The next most critical items are maintenance building and the dugout covers for a total of $116,550. I recommend the Board authorize going to bid on these items. By common consent, Commissioners authorized going to bid on the Concession/Restroom/Scorer buildings and the maintenance building and dugout covers. Our fund raising has begun to pay off; we wish to thank Veolia Environmental Services for their contribution of $1,000 for use at the Youth Ball Complex and the donation of 48 concrete promotional trash receptacles for use at the park as well; 4) the contractor has begun on the Northside project, and has materials on site. The first phase of water is scheduled to be done in 180 days. We are now working with the City of Cordele to purchase the water meters, to assure that they are correct and be reimbursed by the county; 5) yesterday we received two letters from EPD indicating that we need to take some corrective action due to "statistically significant increases" in several heavy metals at sites #1 & #2, turbidity greater than allowed or 5 NTU, and wells too dry for sampling. We are currently researching these areas and hope to come up with a proper response. This could be an unanticipated $20,000 expense if we can't modify the scope of what EPD directed; 6) we have requested a "Design Exception" to the new I-75 overpasses to allow for painted medians verses raised medians due to the economic impact on businesses at the interchanges; 7) last month the Board approved initiating a Map & Tex Amendment for property adjacent to the Airport and Youth Ball Complex, and we plan to have the public hearing in January. If the Board members would like to have a workshop to review the area and issues involved prior to the public hearing, I will be happy to schedule one at your convenience; 8) the registration cut-off for the ACCG Legislative Conference is December 22, 2006, so let Linda know today so that we can make the right reservations and not lose money; 9) the deadline for EZ grant submission is February 9, 2007. We have several applications in the works now. If you have ideas and need to know which "Strategy" to apply under, please check with me ASAP; 10) the City of Georgetown and Quitman County, population 2467 is the newest and smallest consolidate Government. It is the 37th such consolidation since New Orleans and Orleans Parish merged in 1802. Hope reigns eternal; and 11) the Community of Character Word for the Month of November is COMPASSION. To let someone know you care about them. Showing concern or sympathy for others.
THANK OUTGOING COMMISSIONER PHEIL
Chairman Henry advised that this is Commissioner Pheil's last meeting with them, it is interesting because the word of the month is compassion, and he thinks she has been a great example of compassion for this Board, he salutes her for her hard work, thanked her for her thorough hard work in examining and making sure that the correct things were done, and also salutes her for her hard work with the Solid Waste Authority. It has been a pleasure to work with her. Mr. Nance agreed and stated that she has made some positive things with the Solid Waste Authority, and did an outstanding job. Motion was made by Mr. Nance to adopt a Resolution for Mrs. Pheil thanking her for her years of service to the community, seconded by Mr. Faircloth, motion carried unanimously. Mr. Harris replied that he hated to see her go. Mr. Faircloth stated that he thinks our community will remember the big weight that was over our heads in the Solid Waste Authority and dealings that had gone on it the past, and she helped put that to rest and many of our citizens will be able to breathe a lot easier now due to the leadership that was demonstrated by Mrs. Pheil.. Chairman Henry also thanked her for her help in the new ball complex and the courthouse project. Mr. Harris also thanked her for her hard work on the alternative use of the golf course. Mrs. Pheil stated that she is proud of what this Commission has done and the way the community is going, and thanked all the Commissioners for their kind words to her.
GO INTO EXECUTIVE SESSION
Motion was made by Mr. Harris to go into Executive Session to discuss potential litigation and personnel, seconded by Mr. Faircloth, motion carried unanimously.
COME OUT OF EXECUTIVE SESSION
By common consent, Commissioners came out of Executive Session.
APPOINTMENT TO THE CRISP COUNTY AIRPORT BOARD
Motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to reappoint Wayne Castleberry and Chip Wells to five years terms on the Crisp County Airport Board, terms 1-1-07 - 12-31-11, seconded by Mr. Harris, motion carried with Mrs. Pheil abstaining because of her relationship with one of the applicants.
APPOINTMENT TO THE J.W. MANN SHOW BARN STEERING COMMITTEE
Motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to appoint John Woodard to fill the expired three year term of Ken Lewis to the J. W. Mann Show Barn Steering Committee, term 1-1-07 - 12-31-09, and appoint Tucker Price as the County Extension Agricultural Agent to this Board also, seconded by Mr. Harris, motion carried unanimously.
Motion was made by Mr. Faircloth to adjourn the meeting at 12:15 p.m., seconded by Mrs. Pheil, motion carried unanimously.