Commissioners Regular Meeting

Commission Chairman, Percy L. Brown, Jr. called the meeting of the Hancock County Commissioners to order at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 7, 2009with Commissioners Lawson and Joy in attendance.

Adjustments to the Agenda:

MOTION: to add an update on the runway 422 safety area project and to move the sheriff’s department items up on the agenda, under the airport. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)


MOTION: to approve the minutes of the March 10, 2009 commissioners regular meeting. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)


  • As the report was submitted later than usual, Director Pinkham gave a brief overview of the EMA monthly report.
  • Director Pinkham stated that he is preparing to submit the quarterly expenses, for usage of the building, to Emergency Management. He explained that the reimbursement should be for overhead, not square footage and stated the quarterly sum of $3,075.00 is out of line. The square footage for the office is 1025 sq. feet. Rather than calculating the footage as a rental it should have been looked at as overhead. Deputy Director Feury stated that the amount that should have been charged is approximately $3,000.00 for the entire year.
  • Commissioner Joy stated we could include maintenance and cleaning in the amount submitted. Ms. Feury stated it had to be figured on a reasonable cost.
  • Commissioner Brown asked about the cost of the cleaning staff and how the revenue shortage affected the maintenance department revenues. It would end up as uncollected revenues.
  • CFO Roy stated that York County is the most expensive county for EMA revenue. According to his calculations the correct amount should be $5.436 cents per square foot. The actual cost is $5,571.90 per year, or $1,392.98 per quarter. The fuel cost is split 60/40 between the county and jail buildings.
  • Deputy Director Feury disagreed with this calculation as the EMA department does not have a kitchen facility, dryers or running water in the department. She suggested having Bangor Hydro come in and conduct an energy audit for the department.
  • Commissioner Brown asked if $5.00 per square foot would be within proper limits. Director Pinkham felt that the amount would be closer to $3.00 per square foot. Deputy Director Feury stated the county needed to look at county wide expenditures in order to calculate a reasonable cost for the bill, stating the bill can be adjusted in another quarter.
  • CFO Roy will supply a reasonable figure to the commissioners and EMA by the end of the meeting and anticipates that the amount will be close to the $5.00 per square foot.

The commissioners rescheduled their May regular meeting to May 1, 2009 at 9:00 a.m.


  • Assistant Airport Manager, M. Allison Navia, presented the commissioners with a site map of the proposed ARFF building.
  • Rick Malm, of Lewis and Malm Architects, presented the commissioners with the concept design and an overview of the proposed ARFF building.
  • Bid drawings will be presented at the May commissioners regular meeting.
  • Airport Manager Cossette discussed deadline due dates for grant application submission, bids and start of construction.
  • Commissioner Brown would like to see drawings prior to the bids going out.

MOTION: move conceptual approval for the aircraft rescue & fire fighting facility. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to ratify approval of repairs to the 1985 John Deere 644 loader at a cost of $9,900.00. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

  • A request for expenditure from capital reserve accounts form was submitted with the above request.

MOTION: to enter into executive session under MRSA Title 1 §405 (6C) in order to discuss a land purchase offer and to discuss a budget increase for the terminal building roofing replacement project. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)

10:20 a.m.

Commissioner Brown brought the hearing out of executive session.

MOTION: to authorize the airport manager to make an offer to purchase 16.88 +/- acres of land adjacent to the airport in Trenton, Maine. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to authorize the Airport Manager to proceed on the airport roofing project and allow the airport manager to put it out to bid. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to authorize the chairman to sign all grant applications. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

  • Airport Manager Cossette updated the commissioners on the airport safety area project. Preliminary plans are in hand and permits have been applied for. Mitigation projects are being worked on.


MOTION: to approve the hire of Lance Hutchins of Orland as a part-time/on-call corrections officer at $12.00 per hour, effective April 21, 2009. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

  • Sheriff Clark requested permission to purchase a jail van in the 6 month budget in order to reduce the biennial budget by $13,000.00. Funds may be available in unanticipated jail revenues. As second suggestion was to pay for this purchase from the Unanticipated Governmental Budget Modifications account. He stated that funds raised prior to the jail consolidation law can be used to purchase the van.
  • CFO Roy stated that $6,500.00 has been budgeted in the 6 month budget toward this purchase. He suggested that if jail revenues are anticipated to be higher than budgeted, these funds can be used toward the purchase of the new van.
  • Commissioner Brown questioned the need of a new van with the implementation of the statewide jail transportation system. He questioned the prudency of the expenditure at this time. He did not mind going out for bid, but was uncomfortable due to the current scrub issue.
  • Sheriff Clark reminded the commissioners that they swept the jail budget in 2008 and stated he would be in a better position by purchasing the van now and eliminating the purchase from the biennial budget. He would rather remove funds himself rather than having the state decide what needed to be scrubbed from his budget.
  • Commissioner Lawson questioned whether the new vehicle will be a 2008 or 2009. She suggested that the vehicle should have an extended bed.
  • CFO Roy stated that the commissioners have full control over the expenditures of the contingency funds and undesignated funds.
  • Commissioner Joy asked what the van would be used for. The answer was inmate transports, doctor’s appointments, etc. Transports to other facilities will be taken to the hub in Bangor and transported from there.
  • Commissioner Joy did not feel that there is pressure to grant the request today. He requested tabling the request until the May meeting.
  • Sheriff Clark stated that his question was in how to fund the vehicle. CFO Roy reiterated that jail revenues may be in excess of $25,000 to $30,000 so far, for the year, and stated that if not used this year will be put toward the 2009-2010 budget revenues.
  • CFO Roy stated that he learned yesterday that the court surcharge will be applied per the state, to the Hancock County budget.

MOTION: to approve specifications for a jail transport van as presented and to put it out to bid. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

Discussion: CFO Roy suggested going out to bid on the jail van, expending the budgeted $6,500.00 from the sheriff’s vehicle account, wait to see what the jail revenues look like in June and if need be take the difference from excess revenues or the unanticipated governmental budget modifications account 3010-20. Commissioner Joy added the caveat that bidders should be informed that the vehicle will not be purchased until June.

MOTION: approval of the Stonington law enforcement contract. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to accept an asset forfeiture of up to $1,001.00 in the matter of David Butler vs. State of Maine. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

Recess: 11:05 p.m.

Back in session:


  • Commissioner Joy stated that it was his assumption that both the Treasurer and the CFO are checking the warrants prior to commissioner approval. He was correct.

  • CFO Roy stated that when reviewing the warrant he noticed a warrant for tires. He stated that a law enforcement discount is available from Cooper, Firestone, and Bridgestone. He noticed that this discount has not been utilized. A credit of $378.00 will be issued to the Sheriffs Department for this purchase. He explained that tires are purchased in bulk and installed when needed.

MOTION: to approve Payroll Warrants #09-10, #09-11, #09-12 and #09-13 in the aggregate amount of $275,340.29. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve Expense Warrants #009-06, #009-08 and #009-09 in the aggregate amount of $764,548.87. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve the Unorganized Territory Warrant #9 in the amount of $10,259.42. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to reconsider a transfer approved at the March 3, 2009 Commissioners Regular from the sheriff’s training account in the amount of $1,700.00. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

Discussion: The previous motion rescinded a transfer approved at the February 3, 2009 commissioners’ regular meeting.

MOTION: to approve a request to transfer $18,860.00 from account G1-3010-10-Sheriff Training to account R10-400-Training. To approve the transfer of $11,792.00 from account G1-3011-60-Sheriff Laptop to account R10-100-Misc. Income and to approve the transfer of $33,473.64 from account G1-3013-50-DTF to account R12-108-DTF. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

  • CFO Roy requested $9,988.00 to pay for the 2nd pick-up/cruiser approved in the March meeting. The current amount available in account G1-3011-70 is $25,245.00.
  • Commissioner Brown suggested funding of the pick-up trucks, approved in the February 3rd meeting, from the sheriffs’ cruiser account and one from the town cruiser account. He suggested taking as much as needed out of the town cruiser account and leave the funds in the sheriff’s vehicle account to rollover to next year. Chief Deputy Bishop stated that excess funds will roll over into next years vehicle reserve account not unanticipated surplus.
  • CFO Roy stated the sheriff would like the funds spent from his vehicle account and the difference taken from the outside contracts vehicle account.

MOTION: to fund the expenditure of $9,988.00 from account G1-3011-70 toward the purchase of the new cruiser. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

  • Financial Manager, Philip Roy updated the commissioners on Time Trak, Bangor Payroll and Trio services and the new cash receipting module. Implementation of the Time Trak system is scheduled to begin May 1, 2009.
  • Commissioner Joy asked if personal information such as vacation and sick time can be obtained at the Time Trak clock. The answer was yes. He stated that employees should be shown the positive changes associated with the program.
  • Bangor Payroll electronic payroll has proven itself to be a success. Entering accounts payable into TRIO is working successfully and a full accounting of the bills is taking place. Cash receipting is up and running and departments are doing well. The Register of Probate will be closing out her checking account today and a close out of funds is being done every day. The Register of Deeds has been very patient in working with the Financial Services Department in regard to the deeds surcharge account and is reporting these funds on a daily basis, monthly deposits are being made and the checking account will be balanced at the end of each month.
  • Treasurer Planchart explained that the Deputy Treasurer has been removed as a signatory on the Airport, UT and General County accounts and the county clerk has been added in her place.
  • A time slot, on the May agenda, was requested in order for the auditors to make their presentation of the 2008 county audit.
  • Treasurer Planchart updated the commissioners regarding the need for a credit card policy. She also requested standardizing the mileage/meals report.
  • CFO Roy presented the commissioners with a credit card purchase form which details purchases. Receipts for services must be attached to the form when requesting reimbursement. This form will be distributed to all departments following the meeting.
  • Chief Deputy Bishop asked why this was not discussed in a department head meeting prior to requesting its use from the commissioners.
  • Commissioner Lawson requested an accounting of all county credit cards and which employees they are assigned to. CFO Roy will report that information to the commissioners by the May regular meeting..
  • CFO Roy stated that the county does not have a credit card policy in place. He requested the Chief Deputy, someone from the Finance Department and a Commissioner create a policy for credit card use. Commissioner Joy volunteered to serve on this committee.
  • CFO Roy stated that there are several gas card services available and that he will be reviewing this with the sheriffs department in the near future.

12:20 p.m.

Recess for lunch

1:00 p.m.

Back in session

Commissioner Brown opened the grievance hearing regarding the courthouse unions request to the commissioners to cease and desist and to comply with the collective bargaining agreement regarding the initiation of a $5.00 per week increase in employee health insurance contributions.

Attendees included the county commissioners, Teamsters Agent Kenneth Eaton, Shop Stewards Lincoln Ehrlenbach, Judith Dannenberg, and Deborah Burns. CFO Philip Roy and County Clerk DePrenger were also in attendance.

MOTION: to enter into executive session under Title 1 ss. 405 (6D) in order to discuss a grievance. (Lawson/Joy 2-1, motion passed, Brown opposed)

Commissioner Brown brought the hearing out of executive session.

1:28 p.m.: Back in session

MOTION: move that we regretfully deny the grievance and uphold our right to implement the $5.00 increase now because that implementation was only delayed, not abolished. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed).

Commissioners business continued:

  • Commissioner Lawson gave a brief update regarding the Hancock County Adult Drug Treatment Court program.


MOTION: to affirm the hire of Jonathan H. Mahon of Ellsworth as the RCC Director, effective April 21, 2009. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

  • Director Mahon presented the commissioners with monthly statistics for 911 and computer aided dispatch calls. Commissioner Brown requested that they receive the statistics, by e-mail, prior to the meeting.
  • Director Mahon updated the commissioners with regard to the new dispatcher hiring process. Interviews will be held on April 16th.
  • Commissioner Brown reported that the Town of Bucksport has decided to continue to dispatch their emergency services through the town dispatch center. They will not be utilizing the services of the Hancock County RCC at this time. He stated that the town looked at utilizing the RCC for their entire dispatching services, not just evening service. Unfortunately, the committee charged with researching the issue decided to keep their dispatch in-town. The majority of residents, when polled, preferred to keep the service in the town as well.

MOTION: to decline the leave of absence request from dispatcher Jason McFarland and instead offer him a part-time position. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

  • Commissioner Lawson suggested discussing an updated part-time pay range for the future.

  • The RCC Board of Directors will meet on Monday, May 11th at 4:30 p.m. Restructuring of the board was discussed.


  • CFO Roy stated that the registry revenues are increasing and it is in good shape.


  • Jail cook, Annette Smith, asked the commissioners to consider the following question: If, upon retirement, I elect to keep my current health insurance active for a period of time, but at a later date after retirement I desire a retirement health insurance buy-out, would a buy-out be possible? Jail Administrator Dannenberg stated Ms. Smith looking at her options; she may or may not wish to take the buy-out.
  • Commissioner Lawson stated that upon retirement she can keep her health insurance and pay 50%, her request is to possibly go on health insurance upon retirement but at some later point take a health insurance buy-out.
  • Commissioner Brown was not sure the commissioners should go down that road. Commissioner Joy requested numbers associated with the policy vs. a buy-out.
  • CFO Roy will run numbers about possible buy-out scenarios. The commissioners will take this information under advisement and discuss it with Mrs. Smith, in private, at another time.

2:15 p.m.: Break

2:17 p.m.: Back in session


2:20 p.m.

MOTION: to enter into executive session under MRSA Title 1 ss.405 (6A) in order to discuss a FICA issue with Assistant Jail Administrator Franklin Burke. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

2:35 p.m.

Commissioner Brown declared the meeting back in session.

MOTION: to authorize the chairman to sign a Loan and Repayment agreement with Franklin M. Burke, Jr. (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to rescind the previous agreement with Mr. Burke. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to enter into executive session under MRSA Title 1 ss. 405 (6A) in order to discuss labor issues and EMA overhead cost. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

Commissioner Brown called the meeting back in session.

MOTION: to write a letter to EMA telling them that the actual cost of EMA overhead is $7.62 but, that the commissioners plan to charge $4.99 per square foot. Total $5,114.75. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

3:15 p.m.

MOTION: meeting adjourned. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

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