MINUTES OF THE CRISP COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
MEETING HELD ON NOVEMBER 12, 2013
The meeting was called to order at 9:00 a.m. by Chairman A. James Nance, 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. Chairman Nance 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 read a tribute to the ones that have served our county in honor of Veterans Day. He then welcomed all in attendance.
Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to approve the regular meeting minutes of October 8, 2013 and the called meeting minutes of October 30, 2013, seconded by Mr. Felton, motion carried unanimously.
PUBLIC HEARING - SPECIAL USE PERMIT FROM MIKE RAINEY
Connie Sangster, Planning Director, reported that single wide mobile homes are allowed by special use in the district that Mike Rainey is requesting a mobile home. Chairman Nance opened the public hearing and stated that this is a request from Mike Rainey to locate a single wide mobile home in an RS-1 (single family residential zone). The property is located at 2013 Joe Wright Drive South. Mike Rainey is the property owner, and he has given Mr. Bratt, owner of the mobile home, the authorization to ask for this request. Ms. Sangster stated that she has sent letters to all the surrounding property owners, and she has not received anything for or against the request. Mr. Bratt stated that there was another mobile home on the lot; he tore it down and would like to put this mobile home there and there is also a storage building on the property. Chairman Nance asked if there was anyone present that wanted to speak in favor of the request, and Dennis Fraser stated that he was for the request. Chairman Nance asked if there was anyone that wanted to speak in opposition of the request; there was none. Ms. Sangster stated that they can make the decision today. Chairman Nance closed the public hearing. Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to approve the Special Use Permit to locate a single wide mobile home at 2315 Joe Wright Drive South, seconded by Mr. Mathis, motion carried unanimously.
ANNUAL FORESTRY REPORT
Marty Fore with the Crisp-Dooly Forestry gave out the annual forestry report to the commissioners. He stated that overall they had a pretty good year; they had a wet summer so that allowed them to take care of some other projects like rebuilding their nursery office. The fire counts for both counties were 56. Their drought scale from zero to 800 being dry are running over 600, so that is getting pretty bad because of the drought, and within the next few days they will be cutting off permits because of this and the prediction of wind gusts. He advised that the landowners have been working well with them, and he thanked Fire Chief Ray Lunsford and his staff for the tremendous job they do plus they work very well together. He advised that they are working on an in-kind match program to get some trees planted at the new elementary school. He reminded citizens to make sure they call and get a permit before they burn. The permit only covers legal materials, and illegal materials are anything that is man-made. Also, the landowner is responsible for their own fire; the permit is just stating that the weather is okay to burn that day. He also thanked the commissioners for their help to the forestry.
ADOPT NATIONAL HOSPICE PALLIATIVE PROCLAMATION
Christy Bozeman, CRR of United Hospice; Cherrie Thompson, Administrator at the Cordele Office; and volunteer Willie Dexter met with the commissioners regarding the adopting of the National Hospice Proclamation. Administrator Patton read the Proclamation proclaiming November 2013 as National Hospice Palliative Care Month and encouraging citizens to increase their understanding and awareness of care at the end of life and observe this month with appropriate activities and programs. Motion was made by Mr. Felton to adopt the National Hospice Palliative Proclamation -November 2013, seconded by Mr. Mathis, motion carried unanimously. Commissioner Henderson stated that having lost a loved one, you have no idea of the caring and understanding that they provide and how much it means to the family, and he is grateful. Commissioner Mathis stated that hospice used to be a word that nobody ever knew and now it is one that you have come to respect, and he appreciates what they do for the families. Ms. Thompson stated that it is a blessing to be able to take care of those and be a benefit to those families, and they appreciate the commissioners for acknowledging them. Chairman Nance advised that it takes special people to do this work and they become part of your family. Ms. Dexter stated that she has only been volunteering a short time, she got into this because of going through the death of a brother, and until you go through that, a family really does not know all that they are going to be involved in. It has been very rewarding.
APPROVAL OF FY 2014 LOCAL MAINTENANCE & IMPROVEMENT GRANT PROJECTS
Carl Gamble, Public Works Director, reported that the Local Maintenance & Improvement Grant Projects (LMIG) for this year will be for $418,023.06; since the citizen's voted in the TSPLOST, the county will only will have to come up with a 10% match compared to the counties that did not vote in the TSPLOST. They will have to put in a 30% match. The county's match will be $41,802.31. The projects that will benefit from LMIG will be Old Hatley Road from I-75 to the intersection of Penia Road to level, resurface, and stripe with an estimate of $287,350.00; Landfill Road from U.S. 41 going west for 3700 feet to patch, level, resurface and stipe with estimated cost of $102,400; Landfill Road from Hwy 33 going west for 550 feet to repair the base, level, resurface and stripe with estimated cost of $14,100.00; Drayton Lane from U.S. to Drayton Road to level, resurface, and stripe with estimated cost of $119,500.00; and Drayton Road from the CSX Railroad for 700 feet to repair, patch, level, resurface, and stripe with an estimated cost of $20,340.00, making a total cost of $543,750, and with our match plus the what the estimates are over the projects, the county estimated cost from SPLOST will be $125,726.94. He advised that these are five very viable projects. Motion was made by Mr. Mathis to approve the FY 2014 LMIG projects and use the associated county funds to complete the projects, seconded by Mr. Felton, motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE HEALTH CARE PLAN CHANGES
Administrator Patton reported that we have been working on our healthcare plan coverage. He went through the changes that will begin January 1, 2014 and stated that most of the changes are made to be in compliance of the national healthcare act, and since the changes will go into effect in January, we will need to hold an open enrollment in December. The changes are 1) spouses with available healthcare coverage from their employee will be ineligible for coverage on the county's plan; 2) we will be adopting tiered plan rates as currently we only have two choices, employee only coverage or family coverage; 3) we will be adopting a wellness program; 4) remove pre-existing exclusions; 5) family maximum out-of-pocket must be implemented; 6) employee only maximum out-of-pocket is compliant at $6,350; 7) ensure that employees are being covered as of the 91st day after the 90 day waiting period; 8) out of network preventive coverage will no longer be covered; and 9) remove the provision where the employees who retire at age 62 and over with a minimum of 20 years of service can get an 18 month extension of coverage in addition to normal COBRA coverage. The committee's recommendation is to adopt the changes presented. Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to adopt the proposed health plan changes, seconded by Mr. Farrow, motion carried unanimously. Administrator Patton advised that a good many counties are dropping family coverage altogether as they just can't afford it and are only covering their employees, and also that our dental plan is separate from our healthcare plan, and the dental insurance will be going up also in January.
APPROVE DOT FY2014 CAPITAL CONTRACT
Administrator Patton reported that this is the annual contract between the Department of Transportation and Crisp County for our mass transit program. There is an almost $4,000 match, and the company that provides the service will pick up that match, like they have done in the past. This will be at no cost to the taxpayers of the county. Motion was made by Mr. Mathis to approve the DOT FY2014 Capital Contract, seconded by Mr. Farrow, motion carried unanimously.
APPROVE PROCLAMATION RECOGNIZING THE LIFE OF ILA CAPE
Chairman Nance stated that the Commissioners wanted to recognize the life of Mrs. Ila Cape, who at 107 years old was the oldest citizen in Crisp County. Commissioner Farrow read the Proclamation Celebrating the Life of Mrs. Ila Cape born on April 15, 1906 and died on October 28, 2013. Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to Approve the Resolution Celebrating the Life of Mrs. Ila Cape, seconded by Mr. Mathis, motion carried. Mrs. Caroline Mitchell and Mrs. Mary Stewart, daughters of Mrs. Cape, thanked the Commissioners for the Proclamation and appreciated the Commissioners remembering their family.
APPROVE FY2013 BUDGET ADJUSTMENTS
Mrs. Leverett reported that this is an annual action to basically clean up the budget after the end of the year and making sure that everything is equal and fair throughout the budget and in accordance with the Georgia State Code. The General Fund original budget was $14,891,443 with a reduction of $1,921,134 when we separated out the Special Service District, and a final budget adjustments of -$263,594 leaves the General Fund with a final budget of $12,706,715; Law Library original budget was $30,000 with a budget adjustments of $23,500 bringing final budget to $53,500; Jail Maintenance Fund original budget was $231,300 with budget adjustments of -$32,600 leaves final budget at $198,700; DATE Fund original budget at $25,000 with budget adjustments of $8,400 leaves final budget at $33,400; E911 Fund original budget at $818,459 with budget adjustments of -$46,800 leaving final budget at $771,659; Northside Water and Sewer/CDBG10 original budget of $300,000 with budget adjustments of -$166,550 leaves final budget at $133,450; Special Service District original budget at $1,951,134 with budget adjustments of -$34,275 leaving final budget at $1,916,859; Hotel Motel Tax Fund originally did not have a budget fund at the beginning of the year because we weren't having any revenue, now we have some so we have a budget adjustment of $4,700 making final budget at $4,700; SPLOST 2000 original budget at $635,000 with budget adjustments of -$310,125 leaves final budget at $324,875; SPLOST 2005 original budget of $300,000 with budget adjustments of -$110,600 leaving final budget at $189,400; SPLOST 2011 original budget at $3,500,000 with budget adjustments of -$549,200 leaving final budget at $2,950,800; TSPLOST at no original budget with budget adjustments of -$370,825 leaving final budget at -$370,825; Water Distribution Fund original budget at $509,150 with budget adjustments of $139,175 leaving final budget at $648,325; Landfill Fund original budget at $1,339,428 with budget adjustments of $222,350 leaving final budget at $1,561,778; CDBG RLF original budget at $20,500 with budget adjustments of $687,850 leaves final budget at $708,350; Asset Forfeiture Fund original budget at $50,000 with no budget adjustments at this time leaves final budget at $50,000. County-wide total original budget is $22,650,280 with total budget adjustments of -$798,594 leaving county with a final county-wide budget for FY2013 of $21,881,686. Mrs. Leverett stated that when they set this budget, they had the budget balanced with zero dollars coming out of prior year surplus funds but in order to balance the budget after the revenue shortfalls, we had to use $1.2 million of surplus funds. Administrator Patton advised that we receive between $70,000 and $80,000 for the TSPLOST every month, and we have to build this fund up so that is the reason you don't see an expenditure in that line item as the first project we will do is to replace a bridge which will be somewhere between $800,000 and $1 million. Motion was made by Mr. Mathis to adopt the FY 2013 budget adjustments as presented, seconded by Mr. Felton, motion carried unanimously. Chairman Nance asked what is the recommended fund balance, and Mrs. Leverett stated it was four months of operating expenses and we have zero months. Administrator Patton stated that in January they will be bringing amendments to this year's budget.
Mrs. Leverett reported that for the General and three major Special Revenue Funds combined, these funds are reporting October revenues received at $1,550,865 and expenditures at $1,112,783. Year to date totals of $3,061,985 in revenue and $5.5 million in expenditures leave us with a -16% shortfall of $2.4 million at 10/31/13. For the month of October, the Water Fund recorded monthly revenues of $43,207 and expenditures of $34,772; YTD revenues of $188,306 and YTD expenditures of $161,140, leaving the Water Fund with a small net gain of $27,166. Water consumption billed for the month was 4,994,000 gallons and the USDA Bonds are current at $1.5 million. In the Landfill Fund, we are reporting accrued revenue for the month of October at $102,570 and accrued expenses of $92,745 bringing year to date totals to $444,967 in accrued revenue and $482,526 in expenses increasing the net loss in the landfill fund to $37,559. The total tonnage received for the month was 3047.17 tons. Approximately 39% of that was received from Advanced under their commercial contract and 16% under the residential contract. The GEFA loans are current at $4.6 million; also our current monthly average on tonnage is lagging behind last year by about 50 tons a month. In the Cash report, the General Fund and Special Revenue Funds combined are reporting cash on hand of $4.8 million; the proprietary funds at $2.3 million and the SPLOST funds $8.3 million, leaving a County Wide total at 10/31/13 of $15.4 million, about $2.0 million short of this time last year. For the 2000 SPLOST ISSUE, as of October 31, 2013 we have spent $16.9 million leaving us with $763,475 to complete the various projects associated with this issue. For the 2005 SPLOST ISSUE, total expenditures to date of $19.7 million leave us with just over $5.0 million to complete the projects budgeted under this issue. Distribution No. 21 for the 2011 SPLOST Issue in the amount of $300,366 was, once again, down about 2% from the month of September and 4% from October of 2012. It brings the issue to date collections to just over $7.0 million and the monthly average down to $334,331. We have expended $6.2 million. Following that is the detail list of all the SPLOST Expenditures for the month of October. We spent $445,031 in SPLOST dollars during the month. Projects benefiting were, the Crisp County Airport, County Roads, County Buildings, the Crisp County Sheriff's Department, the Recreation Department, the Darton Project and the Cities of Cordele and Arabi. Next is an updated spreadsheet on the Local Option Sales Tax Distributions, and even with our extra percentage point, this month's distribution of $144,166 is down as well, 1.89% from last month and 2.43% from October of 2012. We have six active CDBG Revolving Loan Fund Accounts with a total balance due of $1,255,150. The last report included is preliminary revenue by fund and expenditures by department report. The summary report shows the expended percentage of appropriations for each individual department and the total for each fund. Expenditures should be at 33% or below. As of this report, overall, the General and Special Revenue Funds combined are at 35%; the Water Fund is at 29% and the Landfill fund ended the month at 30%.
Administrator Patton reported that 1) he attended several meetings and events this month; 2) he attended the ACCG Fall 8th District meeting in Americus. They discussed Georgia Counties priorities for the upcoming General Assembly, funding for Juvenile Courts, Tax Reform Clean up, and telecommunications Infrastructure: Siting and Funding; 3) he attended IDA prospect meetings. A new prospect for an old location that has been closed for several years. Potential for up to 128 employees and over a million dollars sales tax revenue per year; 4) the Darton College project is beginning to take shape, footings have been poured and conduit, water/sewer piping has been laid before pouring the floor; 5) they had several meetings to discuss litigation matters; 6) he met with our consulting engineers to correct issues found at the Landfill. We are making progress with most of the issues at the Landfill. The weather has hindered us with completion of some of the issues; 7) he attended our Veterans Day Ceremony at the Veterans Memorial State Park; and 8) while not an integral part of our health plan he wanted to make note that our dental plan has increased its rates somewhat.
GO INTO EXECUTIVE SESSION
Motion was made by Mr. Mathis to go into Executive Session to discuss personnel and pending litigation, seconded by Mr. Farrow, motion carried unanimously.
COME OUT OF EXECUTIVE SESSION
Motion was made by Mr. Felton to come out of Executive Session, seconded by Mr. Henderson, motion carried unanimously.
DISCUSS LANDFILL GARBAGE FEES
Administrator Patton advised that the county may have to start charging for garbage going across the scales at the landfill as we have all kind of garbage in the dumpster outside of the landfill and it is not all county residents' garbage going into this dumpster. In a county that he has worked in previously they charged $5 a pickup to go across the scales, and being able to bring in garbage for free, he doesn't know of any other county that does that. Commissioners discussed this issue but no action was taken.
Motion was made by Mr. Henderson to adjourn the meeting at 11:05 a.m., seconded by Mr. Felton, motion carried unanimously.