MINUTES OF THE CRISP COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
MEETING HELD ON MARCH 12, 2013
Chairman A. James Nance called the meeting to order at 9:00 a.m., with Commissioners Wallace Mathis, Clark Henderson, Sam Farrow, and Larry Felton in attendance. Others present were County Administrator Tom Patton, County Attorney Rick Lawson, Finance Director Sherrie Leverett, and Clerk Linda Finch. Commissioner Farrow gave the invocation, and Administrator Patton led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America. Chairman Nance welcomed all in attendance.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to approve the minutes of the February 12, 2013 regular meeting and the February 29, 2013 called meeting, seconded by Mr. Mathis, motion carried unanimously.
ADOPT RESOLUTION RECOGNIZING CRISP ACADEMY'S LADY WILDCATS FOR WINNING THREE CONSECUTIVE STATE TITLES
Coach Gina Mitchell introduced the members of the Crisp Academy Lady Wildcats. Chairman Nance stated that it was remarkable what this team had accomplished, and he thought it was important for the county to recognize them for what they had done, and he knows they will all have a bright future. He read the resolution stating that the Crisp Academy Wildcats had made history with a victory over Citizens Christian, which gave them a record of 31-2 for the entire season, and a combined three years of 80-12. This championship game, held on March 2, 2013, marked Crisp Academy Lady Wildcat's 100th win over the last four years and crowned them as State Champions for 2011, 2012, and 2013. The resolution also declared March 2, 2013 as Crisp Academy Lady Wildcats Day in Crisp County and recognized and extended sincere best wishes for all future endeavors to them. Motion was made by Mr. Mathis to adopt the Resolution Recognizing Crisp Academy's Lady Wildcats for Winning Three Consecutive State Titles, seconded by Mr. Farrow, motion carried unanimously.
INTRODUCTION OF NEW 4-H DIRECTOR ANNA MCINTYRE
Melinda Miller, 4-H Program Development Coordinator for Southwest District, stated she was here today on behalf of Dr. Laura Johnson, District Director, and she came to introduce Anna McIntyre officially, Crisp County's new 4-H Director. She reported that this is Anna's twelfth day here, she comes well trained from the University of Georgia who was a College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences senator and student ambassador, and one of the top students in the entire University. She was recognized as one of UGA's amazing students this past year; she has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Ag Communications, special certificate in Ag Leadership and Communications, and a minor in Horticulture. She also was a summer camp counselor and served in leadership roles in Georgia 4-H. Ms. Miller stated that she is excited for Anna to lead the Crisp County 4-H program, and with the support and assistance of Janie Wright as Program Assistant and Jesse Bryan as the Secretary and also the support of the county commissioners. Ms. Miller stated that Justin Lanier, County Extension Agent, has been named the Crisp County Extension Coordinator. Ms. McIntyre thanked the commissioners, stated that she is from Ball Ground, Georgia, and she feels like she is home because she is working with 4-H as that is something very familiar with her even though she is five hours away from her home and where she first started. She stated that it is an honor to be here, Crisp County has an excellent record as it is well known throughout the state, and she never dreamed that she would have the chance to contribute to a program such as Crisp County. Chairman Nance and Commissioners welcomed Ms. McIntyre to Crisp County and advised that they look forward to working with her.
ADOPT RESOLUTION IN HONOR OF RETIRING PROBATE JUDGE BELINDA GRIFFIN
Retiring Probate Judge Belinda Griffin thanked the Commissioners for this honor, and stated that she couldn't have done anything over the years without her staff; she appreciates them and each of the Commissioners and past Commissioners that she has had the opportunity to work with. She has experience in other counties that often times their elected officials are feuding with the Board of Commissioners, and that has not been the case in Crisp County and she has always been proud and honored that we have a good working relationship, which has meant a lot to her over the years. She stated that it has been her honor to serve, and she will continue to do what she can for the citizens of Crisp County. This is her 28th year as Judge and 35th year in the Probate Court. Chairman Nance stated that it has been a privilege to work with her as a professional as well as on a personal level over the years, and they appreciate the hard work she have done for the county. Chairman Nance read the Resolution honoring Mrs. Griffin as she has served the citizens of Crisp County with dignity, honor, fairness, and integrity and worked well with the Board of Commissioners cooperatively and professionally. The Resolution also publically commended and genuinely expressed their gratitude to The Honorable Belinda Fold Griffin, Probate Judge of Crisp County. Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to adopt the Resolution Commending The Honorable Belinda Folds Griffin For Her Service As Crisp County Probate Judge, seconded by Mr. Mathis, motion carried unanimously.
COMMENTS FROM JOHNNY JACKSON
Mr. Johnny Jackson stated that he lives at 144 Wanda Road, and in January he received his homeowner's insurance bill, which went from $1200 to $2900 a year, as his ISO ratings went from 6 to 10. He called several insurance companies, and they gave him the same ratings. He talked with Fire Chief Ray Lunsford, and because of where he lives, this area has an ISO rating of 10 now. He and Mr. Lunsford were talking about the need to cover that area, which would take a fire station on Farmers Market Road or in that area for the ratings to go down. He thinks there will be a lot of people surprised in that area when they get their homeowners insurance bills this year since they base the high ratings on the unprotected areas now. He stated that anything the commissioners can do will be helpful for them in that area. Commissioner Mathis stated that was unfortunate this has happened but they are going to continue the process of getting a station in place in that area. Chairman Nance agreed that they are aware of this; it is on their radar and has been for some time.
PUBLIC HEARING - SPECIAL USE PERMIT GRANTED FOR MARK JOHNSON
Connie Sangster, Planning Director, reported that she has a request from Mark Johnson for a Special Use Permit for a Guest House to be located on the same property along with the principal dwelling. Property is located at 358 Cannon Branch Road and is zoned RS2 (Single Family Residential). She stated that Mr. Johnson has a home in Cannon Branch and would like to build a guesthouse; when he came in he stated he wanted to build a pool house, but the regulations state that if the house has a stand-a-lone bathroom, kitchen, and bedroom it meets the definition of as a single family residential structure. That is what they have to look at and define this as a guesthouse. She stated that he does meet all the guidelines per the Unified Development Code for a guesthouse. Chairman Nance opened the public hearing. Mr. Johnson stated that he classified this as a pool house, and it will be used when they are at the pool instead of people going in and out of their main house and also when his wife's family comes down they will have their space to stay. Ms. Sangster advised that he did contact the architectural committee of Cannon Branch, and she received a letter from them stating that they have no objection to this guesthouse as long as he goes by the guidelines. Chairman Nance asked if there was anyone there to speak for or against the request. There were none. Ms. Sangster read the Review Checklist for a Special Use Permit. Chairman Nance closed the public hearing. Motion was made by Mr. Mathis to approve Mark Johnson's request and grant the Special Use Permit for a guest house, seconded by Mr. Felton, motion carried unanimously.
BOB ROBERSON AND ASSOCIATES, INC. SELECTED AS ADMINISTRATIVE CONSULTANT FOR CDBG PROJECTS
Mrs. Leverett reported that the selection of an administrative consultant for the CDBG projects is a requirement of the Department of Community Affairs, and basically every five years we have to solicit proposals from qualified firms to administer our CDBG and or CDBG/EIP projects that run through the county. We advertised for this consultant and received two responses, one from Bob Roberson and Associates and one from Associates in Local Governments Assistance. The respondents were evaluated and based on the criteria and the evaluation; they would like to recommend that Bob Roberson and Associates be selected as our consultant on the CDBG/EIP projects. Commissioner Henderson moved, seconded by Mr. Felton, that based upon a review of the proposals received, the scoring of the six criteria on the scoring worksheet, and following discussion of the proposals, Crisp County hire Bob Roberson and Associates, Inc. as administrative consultants, to design, and to complete CDBG projects for Crisp County as proposed. The motion passed unanimously.
Mrs. Leverett reported that the first page of the financial report shows the monthly and YTD activity for the General and three major Special Revenue Funds. Combined, these funds are reporting monthly revenues at $1.8 million and monthly expenditures of $1.9 million bringing YTD totals to $9.4 million for revenues and $10.3 million in expenditures and leave expenditures exceeding revenues by about 6% at 2/28/13. As of this report we have received about 64% of the 2012 Ad Valorem Tax Revenue projected. In the Water Fund, we recorded monthly revenue of $37,531; YTD $339,473. February expenditures totaled $42,436; YTD, $316,365 leaving the Water Fund with a net income of $23,108. Customer usage for the month was 4,410,000 gallons and the USDA Bonds are current at $1,569,193. In the Landfill Fund, we are reporting $88,956 in accrued monthly revenue; $911,729 year to date; $119,280 in monthly expenses; $889,996 year to date leaving the Landfill with a net gain of $21,734. The total tonnage received for the month of February was 2582.27, which is way down from the previous month and Feb., 2012 by around 1000 tons in both cases. Approximately 37% of that was delivered under the Advanced Environmental commercial contract and 17% under the residential contact. The GEFA Loans are current at $4.8 million. In the cash on hand report, we ended the month with just over $6.0 million in the General and Special Revenue Funds combined, $2.5 million in the proprietary funds and just over $8.0 million in the SPLOST funds giving us a county wide total at 02/28 of $16.6 million. For the 2000 SPLOST issue, as of February 28, 2013, we have spent $16.7 million of the $17.6 million dollars collected, leaving us with $920,000 to complete the various projects associated with this issue. For the 2005 Issue, total collections remain at $24.7 million. To date we have total expenditures of $19.6 million leaving us with a little over $5 million to complete the projects included in this issue. Following that is the same schedule on the new SPLOST. Distribution no. 13, representing January retail sales, in the amount of $274,603 is down from last month and this time last year. Because we had begun to see an upward trend in these numbers, we contacted DOR to inquire about this drop. We were told that there were some issues with late reporting on several very large retail vendors, state wide, and that the additional tax collected would be distributed as soon as possible. To date we have collected just over $4.3 million in revenue under this issue and expended $3.5 million. Following that is an updated schedule on our LOST receipts. This month's distribution of $131,781 is down 26% from last month over 8% from Feb. of 2012. Projects benefiting from SPLOST dollars were the Crisp County Airport, Crisp County EMS, the Jail Expansion, the Darton Project, the CCSO and the cities of Arabi and Cordele. In the CDBG Revolving Loan Fund monthly report, we ended the month with a total outstanding balance of $1.9 million for all these accounts. She stated that they would like to remind everyone that it is time to renew their annual business license if they are operating a business in the unincorporated area of Crisp County. The next report is the revenues by fund and expenditures by department preliminary report for the nine-month period of July 2012 through February 2013. All departments and divisions should be at 67% of their annual allowances. Overall, the preliminary numbers indicate the General Fund and Special Revenue Funds at 65%, the Water Fund at 46% and the Landfill Fund at 66%.
ADOPT RESOLUTION FOR TSPLOST BANK ACCOUNT
Mrs. Leverett reported that the TSPLOST falls under the same accounting regulations where we have to separate these funds from our General Fund. We had to wait until the money came in to set up an account, and we now have a new account for the TSPLOST monies. She has a resolution to authorize the signatories, which include the chairman, finance director, deputy finance director and county administrator for this account, even though they will not be writing checks on this account as everything will be done electronically, but she does need a resolution authorizing the signatures. Motion was made by Mr. Mathis to set up a new TSPLOST Bank Account and authorize the signatories to sign the account at Colony Bank, seconded by Mr. Henderson, motion carried unanimously.
DISCUSS SPECIAL ELECTION
Administrator Patton stated that with the retirement of the Probate Judge, it will require a special election to fill this position, and the recommendation of the Election Board is to hold the special election concurrently with the municipal elections in November. Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to hold the special election for the Probate Judge to concur with the municipal election in November, seconded by Mr. Farrow, motion carried unanimously.
PUBLIC HEARING - CDBG 09q-y-040-1-5204
Chairman Nance opened the public hearing at 10:00 a.m. Mrs. Leverett reported that the public hearing is to close out the Community Development Block Grant, CDBG, 2009, Big Tex Project. She stated that we requested a budget adjustment on this grant and transferred the grant to a Revolving Loan Fund with the county, and Big Tex has now paid the EIP Grant in full. The project is considered over because of this. A public hearing is required after the completion of the CDBG. Mr. Mathis stated that in appreciation of Big Tex, they came to our community, they have made a great business, hired a good many people, and they are now shipping all up and down the east coast and other areas of the United States. This is a wish to have an economic development project come and be fruitful and even pay their loan back early. This also puts more money back into the county's RLF, Revolving Loan Fund, for the county can use to help other businesses. They have also been a great corporate citizen as they have made some monetary donations to different civic organizations. Chairman Nance agreed that they have been a good corporate partner and it is good to be on the receiving end for our Revolving Loan Fund. Administrator Patton stated that he has already been approached about a RLF from the IDA and IDC on a project right now. Mrs. Leverett stated that as with all of our previous CDBG projects, once we close them out, citizens are advised that all the quarterly reports, project accomplishments, and paperwork involved with employment records are available for viewing, if they wish. Chairman Nance asked if anyone in the audience had any comments or questions, hearing none, he closed the public hearing.
APPROVE TO SET ASSIDE MONEY FOR ALL-STAR TRAVEL FUNDS
Chris Green, Chairman of the Recreation Advisory Board, and Eric Bozeman, Recreation Department Director, met with Commissioners advising that they had sent a letter to Mr. Patton for the Commissioners' approval, and were hoping to be on the agenda. Mr. Greene handed out a copy of the letter which included a way of coming up with funds for All-Star travel teams to go to District or State. He stated that our community has always come together to raise those funds in order for that to be done, but the rate now is set at $100 per day for travel monies for fourteen kids, and that makes it real difficult to take care of meals for those children and other necessities that they might have. Whenever we built the baseball/softball complex, the county had agreed to outsource the concessions and 20% of the concession revenue comes back to the county, and the Advisory Board is requesting is that the 20% that comes from the concession stand revenue be put into a line item for All-Star travel for District and State. He stated that in 2011, the 20% that came back to the county was $6,542.53, and in 2012, it was $5,586.09. Also, last year during budget time, Mr. Bozeman had requested $10,000 to go into a travel fund for All-Star participation in support for our children, which we probably would not spend that much in a year's time, but what they wanted was a little bit of a cushion so that if all of our teams won at District and went to State, those extra funds would be needed. He stated that basically they are asking that the 20% be put into a line item to start being able to pay for that part and still raise money in our community, as we always have. Chairman Nance stated that he thinks the Board took that $10,000 out of the budget. Administrator Patton stated that they have taken care of this year and suggests that we take this up in the next round of budget hearings; he thinks it is important that we support these programs that are beneficial to everyone in the county as this would be a means of doing that by marking the 20% concession to the travel funds. Mr. Henderson stated that he thinks we can do that administratively also, and Mr. Patton said that is what they have done for the rest of this year. Mr. Henderson stated that of all the money that we spend, he thinks this would be an excellent expenditure of those funds to help those children do something that they wouldn't be able to do otherwise. He can't think of a better way for spending that small amount of money on kids. Mr. Mathis stated that the Recreation Department has many line items and to attach one source of income to this as an offset is really unnecessary, it is only going to be used when they need to travel because the kids are good enough to go and participate, and they are doing this to represent Crisp County, their improving themselves by doing this. He stated it is kind of wrong for us to get kids to participate in the program, achieve a level of skill that lets them go to another county and represent us; we need to work on approving an expense account for travel. If the revenue isn't there, they will still have to go. To single out this revenue for this bill is kind of redundant as we should look at the budget as a whole, and it will have to be what it takes. We should work up a way to fund it without just saying we are going to dedicate this funding to that. Chairman Nance and Mr. Henderson stated that they like this idea as they have been dealing with this for many years, and we have never really addressed it. Mr. Henderson stated that his point is if you have something that is specifically designated for that purpose, it will be used for that purpose because if you just throw it in the pot, then when you need the money to go to travel you doesn't feel like you have the money for that. Mr. Greene stated that the reason they wanted this to be specific to a line item is if parents and people visiting our community know the money they are spending at the concession stand is earmarked to support children to go to District and to State, they will actually spend more in the concession stand. Administrator Patton stated that we need to designate a line item and make sure that Commissioners approve that line item. Mr. Felton stated he likes the idea of the Advisory Board as this has been going on for a while as year after year we have to get out and raise money for the kids to travel, and the kids are representing Crisp County and Cordele. As a County Commissioner we should be responsible for these kids, and we really shouldn't even be having this conversation at all because we don't won't to spend $6,000. Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to accept the Recreation Advisory Board recommendation that we implement a line item in the Recreation Department budget for the funds that was generated as a result of the concession stand sales and those funds to use for the All-Star travel teams or otherwise designated to be used to begin next fiscal year, seconded by Mr. Felton, motion carried unanimously. Mr. Bozeman went over the events that are going on at the recreation department, and the good turnout of kids that are playing in their programs, especially the new track program that they started last year. They are also working on some interesting ideas for summer. Mr. Felton thanked Mr. Bozeman for the good job he is doing at the recreation department.
COUNTY ADMINISTRATOR'S REPORT
Administrator Patton reported that 1) he attended several meetings and events this month; 2) he attended ACCG DB Board of Trustees meeting in Atlanta for a round of discussions on our Defined Benefit plan for FY 2014; 3) he had several meetings with Bob Robinson to coordinate the application for CDBG-13. Conducted the door to door surveys that are required; 4) he was on Phil's noon day show; 5) he worked with our EMC during the severe weather even. Kudos to everyone involved, we stayed ahead of events as they happened; 6) he worked on several property tax inquiries from citizens; 7) he worked on finalizing the RFP for curbside solid waste collection; 8) he met with Darton College project manager to coordinate a meeting with Norfolk Southern Railroad to discuss transfer of Property along their rail line for follow on growth of the college; and 9) he was the guest speaker at the Lions Club.
GO INTO EXECUTIVE SESSION
Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to go into Executive Session to discuss personnel and potential litigation, seconded by Mr. Felton, motion carried unanimously.
COME OUT OF EXECUTIVE SESSION
Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to come out of Executive Session, seconded by Mr. Mathis, motion carried unanimously.
REAPPOINT BOARD MEMBERS TO THE CRISP-TURNER JOINT DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY & SOLID WASTE AUTHORITY
Administrator Patton stated that Marlene Kimbrel has agreed to serve on the Crisp-Turner Joint Development Authority for another four years term expiring 3/9/17; also Angus Campbell and Mark Crenshaw have both agreed to serve on the Solid Waste Authority for another four year term expiring 2/13/17. We also have two openings on the Crisp-Dooly Joint Development Authority and one opening on the Crisp-Sumter Development Joint Authority, which we will be advertised for appointments at the next meeting. Motion was made by Mr. Mathis to reappoint Marlene Kimbrel to another four-year term on the Crisp-Turner Joint Development Authority, term expiring 3/19/17, and reappoint Angus Campbell and Mark Crenshaw to four-year terms on the Solid Waste Authority, terms expiring 2/13/17, seconded by Mr. Henderson, motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE BID FOR OLD HATLEY BRIDGE CULVERT WIDENING
Carl Gamble, Public Works Director, reported that they did advertise for bids for the Old Hatley bridge culvert widening project, and they received three bids, Southern Concrete, Ed Smith Construction, and Griffin-Folsom Construction. He advised that Griffin-Folsom Construction was the apparent low bidder of $55,900, Ed Smith Construction bid was $79,054, and Southern Concrete bid was $84,685.80. He stated that Griffin-Folsom Construction is a certified bidder with the Department of Transportation. Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to approve the low bid for the Old Hatley bridge culvert widening from Griffin-Folsom Construction for $55,900.00, seconded by Mr. Felton, motion carried unanimously.
Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to adjourn the meeting at 12:29 p.m., seconded by Mr. Mathis, motion carried unanimously.