Commissioners Regular Meeting

Commissioner Shea called the meeting to order at 9:05 a.m. on Tuesday July 10, 2007in the conference room at the County Courthouse in Ellsworth, with Commissioners Brown and Lawson in attendance.

Adjustments to the Agenda:

MOTION: move to add item 10-A, a request to reschedule the Tax Appeal request of Robinson, Biskind, and Cohen v. the Town of Brooksville to the September Commissioners Regular Meeting. (Brown/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: move to add: item 4-c, a discussion regarding the 2006 Audit.
(Shea/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)


MOTION: move to approve the minutes of the June 6, 2007 Commissioner Special Meeting and the June 12, 2007 Commissioners Regular Meeting. (Lawson/brown 3-0, motion passed)


Monthly Report:

  • The Commissioners had no questions regarding the Emergency Management Monthly report as submitted via e-mail prior to the meeting.
  • Commissioner Shea questioned the buzzer system.  Director Pinkham explained that some employees had expressed interest in having emergency buzzers installed in County offices.  Commissioner Shea asked if federal funding would be available to help with the cost of this system.  Director Pinkham did not think so.

The following was discussed in regards to the Emergency Preparedness Plan:

  • Commissioner Shea would like to schedule a Department Head meeting to discuss the installation of a buzzer system.  Chief Deputy Bishop was in charge of obtaining prices for the system.
  • Lanyards, cards, and ink to make the ID cards have been ordered.
  • Director Pinkham stated that Ellsworth Fire Chief, Jon Marshall felt one or two more Knox Boxes installations would be alright, but was not overly concerned as access to the Courthouse can be gained through the Sheriffs Department.  Director Pinkham stated a Knox Box at the Andrew Peters Office Building would be of importance.
  • Commissioner Lawson inquired if phone numbers in the Emergency Preparedness Plan had been corrected.  The Clerk will work with Director Dunno for the suggested changes.
  • Director Pinkham stated the responsibility in updating the Emergency Preparedness Plan lies with the Commissioners Office.
  • First Aid Kits will be available on each floor.  The cost of which will come from the Commissioners budget.

The Commissioners signed the Emergency Preparedness Plan as presented.  No motion was made.

  • Commissioner Lawson asked Director Pinkham’s opinion regarding the Southwest Harbor Emergency Plan. She was concerned that an emergency shelter had been arranged at the Fire Department.  Director Pinkham stated he had spoken with the Town of Southwest Harbor and reported the faults he found with their plan.  He stated, he has no authority to update their plan.
  • Commissioner Lawson questioned the boat moorings. Director Pinkham stated that the Coastguard Auxiliary is assigned the task of finding moorings in each harbor.  They would survey the existing moorings to see what size vessel they could accommodate.  In the event of an emergency, we can ask to use private moorings.


Approval: MeDOT Cooperative Agreement:

  • Airport Manager Cossette discussed a new procedure initiated by the MeDOT that included State funding for cooperative agreements for airport aviation improvement projects.  This agreement allows the County to incur project related costs prior to having a fully executed State Reimbursement Agreement.

MOTION: move to approve and execute the Agreement between the MeDOT regarding Cooperative Agreements. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

Discussion: Projects going out to bid:

  • Airport Manager Cossette discussed Pavement Crack Sealing and Remarking projects for Runway 4-22 and Taxiways A, B, H and J.
  • The demolition of buildings and site clean up on the newly purchased airport property was discussed.
  • Bid specifications for this project along with the prior mentioned projects will be on file in the Commissioners Office.
  • Manager Cossette asked to schedule bid opening for projects 1 and 2 for 9:00 a.m. on August 14th.  He asked that the Commissioners authorize him and one Commissioner or the County Clerk to open bids for the demolition project, upon opening he will review them for completeness and compliance and prepare a written recommendation to the Commissioners.  He further asked the Commissioners to authorize Commissioner Shea to execute the contract based on his recommendation.
  • Commissioner Shea commented that the pavement form the land purchase will be coming up and be recycled. The Grange Hall is interested in using some of that area for parking.
  • Airport Manager Cossette commented on the entrance change and the area being fenced off depending on where the entrance is located.
  • Commissioner Brown asked if any hazardous materials were in the Harding building.  Airport Manager Cossette stated that the septic tank will be emptied and filled. There is also some asbestos positive floor tile.  The tile would be removed by an abatement company before the general demolition begins.

MOTION: move to authorize the Airport Manager and one Commissioner or the County Clerk to open bids on the Demolition project. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)


Treasurer Crowley commented that the request for carry forwards for the 2007-2008 Unorganized Territory budget will be submitted at the August meeting.

MOTION: move to approve Payroll Warrant #07-23, #07-24, #07-25, and #07-26 in the amount of $240,884.54. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: move to approve Expense Warrants #007-019, #007-020, and #007-021 in the amount of $1,498,350.36. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: move to approve Unorganized Territory Warrant #12 in the amount of $11,975.81. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

  • Commissioner Shea would like an explanation as to why the UT Supervisor line was overspent at the August meeting.

Approval of the 2007 Tax Anticipation Notice:

MOTION: to approve the bid of Bangor Savings Bank for a Five Hundred Thousand Dollar TAN at 3.69% for FY07: (Lawson/Brown, 3-0, motion passed)

VOTED:   That pursuant to Title 30-A, Section 932, the Hancock County Commissioners are hereby authorized to borrow from Bangor Savings Bank a principal amount not to exceed Five Hundred Thousand Dollars ($500,000), at an interest rate of 3.69% to be drawn on an “as needed” basis, with principal and interest due December 31, 2007, the proceeds of the loan to be used for financing the governmental activities and obligations of the County in anticipation of funds to be raised by taxation in fiscal year 2007 (ending December 31, 2007), said load to be evidenced by the 2007 Tax Anticipation Note (The “Note”) of the County executed and delivered on behalf of the County by the Treasurer and counter-signed by a majority at least of the County Commissioners; and upon such further terms and conditions as have been prescribed by the lender and approved by the Treasurer and a majority of the County Commissioners; said Note to be entitled “County of Hancock 2007 Tax Anticipation Note”.  (3-0)

VOTED:  That all actions heretofore taken by the municipal officers of the County of Hancock relating to the tax anticipation borrowing from Bangor Savings Bank, be, and they hereby, ratified, approved and confirmed. (3-0)

VOTED:  That pursuant to the requirements of the Tax Reform Act of 1986, and Section 265 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, the County hereby designates the Note to be a “qualified tax exempt obligation” of the County, and that the County shall not issue in 2007 an aggregate total amount of qualified tax exempt obligations in excess of $10,000,000.  Further, the County does not reasonably expect to issue tax-exempt obligations in an excess of $5,000,000 during 2007. (3-0)

VOTED:  That, subject to appropriations, the County shall take any and all actions required under the Tax Reform Act of 1986 and the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, to maintain the tax exempt status of the interest on the Note, and to maintain the status of the Note as a “qualified tax exempt obligation” of the County, and that the Note may be subject to such further terms and conditions as may be agreed to by a majority at least of the County Commissioners and the Treasurer of the County to carry into effect the full intent of the foregoing votes. (3-0)

Audit Discussion:

  • Commissioner Shea stated that the Audit had not been formally approved; the reason being the Sheriff had inquired about one of the Auditors comments.  We are now awaiting a response from the Auditor.  This item will be readdressed during the August Regular Meeting.


Monthly Report:

  • Unorganized Territory Supervisor Bunker verbally presented his monthly report.
  • Commissioner Brown commented that he traveled with UT Supervisor Bunker to Nicatous and was pleased with what he saw.

Hazardous waste:
UT Supervisor Bunker presented the Commissioners with a request to participate in the 2007 Household Hazardous Waste collection.  The Commissioners agreed this was a beneficial project and agreed to participate in the program.

MOTION:  move to approve the trash contract in the amount of $3,310.00 between the Town of Deer Isle and Eagle Island. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: move to approve the trash contract in the amount of $700.00 between the Town of Cherryfield and Township 10. (Brown/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: move to approve the Fire Contract in the amount of $1,500.00 between the Town of Cherryfield and Township 10. (Brown/Shea 3-0, motion passed)

  • Commissioner Lawson inquired as to whom would be responsible for contacting insurance companies in the event of fires in the UT and questioned if section 3.5 was in every fire contract?  Mr. Bunker stated that he couldn’t remember.  Mr. Bunker stated once he is made aware of a fire, he will contact the Fire Department involved for information.
  • Commissioner Brown was of the opinion that the responding Fire Department should be responsible for contacting the home owner regarding insurance information.
  • The Commissioners would like to see language added to future contracts stating that the Fire Department is responsible for contacting the home owner regarding insurance, once the insurance company has paid their portion, a bill can be presented to the Commissioners for the remaining portion.

UT Supervisor Bunker presented the Commissioners with information regarding the Urban-Rural Initiative Program Certification for 2007-2008.

MOTION: Move to accept DOT Urban Initiative Program in the amount of $12,732.00 (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)


Jail Board Report for June 2007:

  • The Jail Board Report for June 2007 was down.
  • Sheriff Clark reported the new Somerset County Jail may be available by September 2008.  He stated, there are currently15 empty beds in the Hancock County Jail.

Discussion: Grade increase for Assistant Jail Administrators:

  • Sheriff Clark explained that due to wage increases for Jail Sergeants in the latest Union Contract, the Assistant Jail Administrators are being paid less than the Jail Sergeants.  He requested to raise the Assistant Jail Administrators to a grade 14 on the wage scale.  This would be an increase of $1.89.  Commissioner Shea stated this could not be done in the current budget year.  Sheriff Clark explained that the AJA’s are on call a week at a time and if they are called into the jail during off hours, they are given 8 hours of comp time.
  • Commissioner Lawson suggested increasing the AJA’s to a Step 13.  Sheriff Clark suggested utilizing the reserve account to fund the increase.  Commissioner Shea stated the reserve account will be highly stressed after paying the new union contract wages.
  • Commissioners Shea stated that due to the implementation of the new wage scale for Union employees, we do not have the funds to increase the Assistant Jail Administrators wage.  He suggested planning it in the FY08 budget.

Comp time sell back for Assistant Jail Administrators:

  • Jail Administrator Dannenberg requested that the Commissioners allow the two Assistant Jail Administrators to sell back their comp time per the recently approved Union Contract.
  • Commissioner Brown stated that since the AJA positions are not connected to the Union, he is opposed to the request.
  • Jail Administrator Dannenberg stated that the AJA’s earn 8 hours of comp time when they are called in during their on call time.  Commissioner Brown asked if they were alternating weeks.  The answer was yes. The Jail Administrator is on call 24/7.
  • Commissioner Shea suggested developing a policy as soon as possible, for non-exempt, non-union employees that mirrors the new SO/RCC Union Contract which states; Compensatory time may be accumulated up to 100 hours.  Compensatory time may be used or bought down at any time during the year.  Not more than forty-(40) hours may be carried over annually.

MOTION: move to develop a policy as soon as possible for non-exempt, non-union employees that mirrors the new SO/RCC Union Contract which states; Compensatory time may be accumulated up to 100 hours.  Compensatory time may be used or bought down at any time during the year.  Not more than forty-(40) hours may be carried over annually. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

Drug Task Force Forfeiture to Ellsworth Police Department:

  • Mt. Desert Police Chief Jim Willis, chairman of the Drug Task Force Advisory Board, attended the meeting. Chief Willis requested that $10,300.00 in forfeiture funds from the sale of the Sorrento property be given to the Ellsworth Police Department as payment for their assistance in the seizure of this property.
  • Chief DeLeo explained that if a municipal Police Department significantly contributed to an investigation that lead to a seizure of significant proportion, that municipality would share in proceeds of the seizure as a reward in contributing to the case.
  • Sheriff Clark stated that discussions had taken place to reward participating agencies.
  • Per an Agreement the MDEA receives 10 % of the proceeds.  Chief DeLeo asked for a 10% of share as well.
  • Chief DeLeo explained that an account has been established with City of Ellsworth for forfeiture funds.  These funds are used exclusively for the Police Department with Council approval prior to expenditure.
  • The City of Brewer received funds because they had an officer on the Federal Task Force that participated in this particular seizure.
  • Forfeited Funds are used by the County to fund the DTF in the upcoming year.

MOTION: move to grant the forfeiture request of Ellsworth Police Chief John DeLeo in the amount of $10,300.00. (Lawson/Shea 3-0, motion passed)


Monthly Report:

  • Director Dunno presented the Commissioners with her June 2007 Activity Report via e-mail prior to the meeting.
  • Director Dunno stated she is considering sending an employee to Spillman training in Utah.  She stated that due to other job considerations, Doug Ashmore has been unable to bring the CAD System online as timely as she hoped.
  • Commissioner Brown was concerned that the CAD System is not available and suggested contacting CBE.  It was explained that as CBE is not currently contracted to work on the Spillman System in Hancock County, additional charges would be incurred.
  • Commissioner Lawson asked if CBE could do training, Director Dunno did not think so.
  • Director Dunno stated Penobscot County is using a CAD system but she was unsure if their system has been updated.
  • Commissioner Brown suggested having the CAD system on line before BAC meets.
  • Commissioner Shea asked if we wanted to contact CBE to see if they can continue with the CAD installation.  Director Dunno preferred to investigate this a little more.
  • Commissioner Lawson asked if we should meet with the City of Ellsworth.  Director Dunno felt that the problem is an Ellsworth employee working on a County project, he has limited time.

RFP needs to be made next year that all work is done through CBE or current company.

New Rules from State ESCB:

  • Director Dunno explained that according to new state guidelines, a form must be submitted to the State when any employee is released from duty.  If the employee was released due to unsatisfactory service, that employee will not be considered for hire at a different facility.

Progress on Supervisor Position for 2008:

  • Director Dunno discussed her reasons for needing a supervisory position within the RCC.  She provided a draft job description of this new position to the Commissioners and explained an existing employee would be promoted to this position.
  • Director Dunno would like to invite RCC Directors from other counties to sit in on the interviewing process and choose the best qualified candidate. Commissioner Shea stated Director Dunno would be the best person to choose who would fill this position.
  • The Clerk will check with Attorney Greif to see how the position of Supervisor, which might be a non-union position, would be affected regarding the Union if a current Union member is hired for this position. 

9-1-1-installation update:

Director Dunno stated that new equipment will be arriving in September.  This is in conjunction with the possible change from Verizon to Fairpoint.

Increase Dispatcher Jennifer Grant from Step A to Step C:

Director Dunno stated Jennifer came to the Hancock County RCC/9-1-1 Center with previous experience.  She also stated her pleasant surprise at how well Jennifer is doing.

Motion:  move to increase Dispatcher Jennifer Grant from a Step A to Step C (Lawson/Shea 2-0, motion passed)

Recess: 12:15 until 1:00


MOTION: move approval to reschedule the Tax Appeal of Robinson, Biskind, and Cohen v. the Town of Brooksville to the September Commissioners Regular Meeting. (Brown/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)

Commissioners Business resumed:

RCC organizational discussion:

  • Commissioner Shea began the discussion by stating that there has not been a quorum of the RCC Board of Directors in quite some time.  He suggested dissolving the Board of Directors and having the Commissioners take a more active role in advising the RCC Director.  He also suggested appointing a Technical Committee for advisory purposes.  Commissioner Lawson agreed with his suggestions.
  • Commissioner Brown requested that the Towns be notified of the Commissioners concerns and to inform them of the Commissioners intentions.
  • Commissioner Shea stated that without the Board of Directors, the RCC would never have gotten off the ground.  Commissioner Lawson agreed, and stated they were necessary and useful at one time.
  • Commissioner Brown stated that changing the Board of Directors would not get the program off the ground.  He stated 4:30 p.m. meetings are not a good time to meet and agreed that the Commissioners should take a more active role.
  • Commissioner Shea stated his vision would include the Commissioners approving policy making decisions and the Technical Committee would handle the more technical aspects of the program.  He suggested sending a letter to the Board of Directors advising them of this plan.  Commissioner Lawson agreed and stated she would like to write this letter together with the Clerk.

MOTION: move to notify the Towns, Member Organizations, and the current RCC Board of Directors that the Commissioners are contemplating reorganizing the RCC and hope to make a decision at their August meeting. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

Director Dunno recommended that recognition be given to those who have served on the Board of Directors.

Appoint: County Representative to the HCPC Executive Board:

MOTION: move to reappoint Janet Michaud and to appoint Mr. Steve Walton of Franklin as the County Representatives to the Hancock County Planning Commission Executive Board. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

Approve: Sheriff’s, Chief Deputy’s and Deputies’ Bonds:

MOTION: move to approve the Sheriff’s, Chief Deputy’s and Deputies’ Bond as presented. (Shea/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)

Signatures: SO/RCC Union Contract:

MOTION: move to approve the 2007-2009 SO/RCC Union Contract as presented. (Shea/Lawson 2-1, motion passed) Brown apposed

Commissioner Brown stated he feels we have excellent employees, but has concerns with the Union Contract.

11:30 a.m.: Land Purchase Discussion – Executive Session

MOTION: move to go into executive session at 1:45 to discuss land purchase. (Brown/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: Move to come out of executive session at 2:20pm (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

1:00 p.m.: Tax Appeal Hearing: The Amanda Trust, Andrea C. Brower Trustee v. the Town of Dedham.

Commissioner Shea called the hearing to order 1:05pm.  The participating parties were not in attendance.

Commissioner Shea declared the hearing closed at 1:20.

Motion: No testimony was given at the hearing, so the Commissioners took no action.
(Brown/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)

The tax appeal for the Amanda Trust will be rescheduled to August 14th at 1:00pm

2:50 p.m.: Recess
3:00 p.m.: Back in Session

3:00 p.m.: Tax Appeal Hearing: Howard S. Brower v. the Town of Dedham

Commissioner Shea called the hearing to order at 3:00 pm and swore in the participating parties.

Commissioner Shea declared the hearing closed at 3:54pm.  Deliberations will be held during the Regular Commissioners Meeting held in August.

Treasurer Crowley addressed the Commissioners regarding the Treasurer’s office hours as discussed in the June meeting minutes.  She stated that a policy should be created addressing uniformity with regards to Courthouse hours of operation. 

  • Treasurer Crowley stated that her Deputy is very conscientious about her hours and keeping the office open 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. for public use.
  • Treasurer Crowley explained that upon hire, the former Clerk advised her that the office hours were 8:30-4:00 Monday through Friday as per the Hancock County Personnel Policy. After speaking with the current County Clerk, she was advised that, per the minutes September 17, 2001, the Deputy Treasurer’s work week was increased from 35 to 40 hours contingent that the Treasurer’s office remains open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  She advised the Commissioner’s that she was not aware of this until recently and has always been very conscientious with regards to the operating hours of her department. 

4:25 p.m.

MOTION: move to adjourn (Brown/Shea 3-0, motion passed)

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