Commissioners Regular Meeting
Commission Chairman Steven E. Joy called the meeting of the Hancock County Commissioners to order at 9:01 a.m. on Tuesday, December 4, 2012 in the conference room at the county courthouse located in Ellsworth, Maine with Commissioners Brown and Lawson in attendance.
EMPLOYEE APPRECIATION: Commissioner Fay A. Lawson was recognized for her 10 years of service to the citizens of Hancock County.
Adjustments to the agenda:
MOTION: to add item 7c, to accept the resignation of Lori Bartlett as RCC Clerk, effective November 7, 2012. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve the minutes of the November 6, 2012 commissioners' regular meeting, November 13, 2012 commissioners' special meeting and November 28, 2012 Informational Meeting. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve the Rocky Mountain Trail Riders ATV Club agreement. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
Discussion: Commissioner Joy stated that the vote was 2-1, and the agreement can be terminated at any time.
Deliberations: Smith v. Town of Trenton tax appeal:
A front foot valuation was received from the Town of Trenton and distributed to the Smiths. Commissioner Lawson questioned the earlier valuation and questioned the partial revaluation.
MOTION: to deny the Smith v. the Town of Trenton tax appeal on the basis that we did not find that the taxpayer presented credible, affirmative evidence that the assessor's valuation was manifestly wrong, by demonstrating (1) the property was substantially overvalued and an injustice resulted; (2) there was unjust discrimination, or (3) the assessment was fraudulent, dishonest or illegal. (Joy/Lawson 2-0, motion passed) Brown abstained.
Discussion: Either party may appeal from the decision of the county commissioners to the Maine Superior court within 30 days, in accordance with Maine Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 80B.
MOTION: to affirm the request to change the District Attorney's Office, office hours, from 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday to 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
Healthcare Broker of Record discussion/decision: Cross Insurance, Acadia Benefits and the Franklin Group made presentations on November 13, 2012. Commissioner Joy stated that he preferred to obtain the services of Acadia Benefits as the county's broker of record beginning in 2013. Commissioner Lawson agreed. Commissioner Brown stated that he preferred to remain with the Franklin Group and questioned the cost per vendor. Commissioner Joy felt that Cross Insurance and The Franklin were “captive” to the companies that they represent. He felt that the Acadia Group are true brokers who could look at all options.
MOTION: to contract for broker of record services with Acadia Benefits for 2013. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to appoint Commissioner Joy as Director to Maine County Commissioners Association (MCCA) and the MCCA Risk Pool. (Brown/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
Office of Financial Affairs:
motion: to approve General Fund and Airport Payroll Warrants #12-43, #12-44, #12-45, #12-46 and #12-47 in the aggregate amount of $249,591.58. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve General Fund and Airport Expense Warrants #12-41-, #12-42, #12-43 and #12-44 in the aggregate amount of $527,565.63. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve Jail and UT Fund Payroll Warrants #13-17, #13-18, #13-19, #13-20 and #13-21 in the aggregate amount of $115,924.47. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve Jail and UT Fund Expense Warrants #13-17, #13-18, #13-19 and #13-20 in the aggregate amount of $122,702.61. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
Discussion: this includes jail and UT’s.
Financial reports to include the jail and airport updates were presented. The jail is running ahead of schedule with regard to expenditures for health insurance. The sheriff and jail administrator are being notified each month of the expenditures in this account. Reports are sent to the BOC monthly that includes the information. Commissioner Joy requested that a telephone call be placed to make sure that the BOC knows that funds may be due to the county by the BOC should the health account be over expended. The airport budget is on track.
MOTION: to approve October health insurance expenditures in the amount of $182,902.87. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve a request for transfer of budgeted funds in the amount of $50.84 from account G1-3015-20 to account E18-70-125 for the purchase of HCFFA Cascade system parts. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve a request for transfer of budgeted funds in the amount of $35.85 from account G1-3015-20 to account E18-70-125 for the purchase of HCFFA Cascade system parts. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve a capital expenditure in the amount of $1,158.75 from account G1-3011-01 for probate server related purchases and installation thereof. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
Discussion: Originally approved in the August 29, 2012 CBW.
MOTION: to approve a capital expenditure in the amount of $2,100 from account G1-3011-01 for the purchase of parts related to the fiber optic project. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)
Discussion: Originally approved in the October 2, 2012 CRM and should be operational hopefully by next week or the week after.
MOTION: to approve a capital expenditure from account G1-3022-10 in the amount of $20,000 for the purchase of a 2013 Chevrolet Tahoe for the Emergency Management Agency. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
Discussion: Originally approved in the September 4, 2012 CRM. This will be reimbursed at 50%. Once it is reimbursed the commissioners will be asked to place the funds in a capital account for a future vehicle purchase. $6,180 of the vehicle purchase will come from the operating account.
MOTION: to approve a capital expenditure from account 40-70-800 in the amount of $1,250.81 for the purchase of airfield signs and lighting supplies. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
Discussion: Originally approved in the August 7, 2012 CRM.
MOTION: to approve a capital expenditure from account G1-3014-10 in the amount of $2,341.47 for the purchase of 2 computer monitors for the CFO Asst and a laptop for the CFO. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve a capital expenditure from account G1-3011-70 in the amount of $50,162 for the purchase of 2-Chevrolet Tahoe administrative vehicles. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
Discussion: Town Contract expenses vs. revenues were discussed.
The jail audit has been completed; a reinstatement of a prior year in the UT audit and the addition of TIF funds caused the UT audit to be amended. There are no deficiencies in either audit.
CFO Roy was presented with a memorandum which serves as guidelines/conditions pertaining to his outside employment as a Somerset County Commissioners. CFO Roy verbally acknowledged the memorandum.
Karen Frink of Hoyle Tanner & Associates along with Charles Earley of Lewis & Malm Architecture were in attendance to present design considerations, the process so far, final concept floor plan and elevations and a breakdown of eligible and ineligible space as it relates to the project budget of the new terminal building design project. Airport Manager Rogers presented a brief overview of the project. The FAA ineligible cost are approximately $350,000. Airport Manager Rogers stated that, per FAA requirements, an environmental assessment for the building expansion area would be forthcoming. Said assessment would be conducted by Hoyle Tanner & Associates.
MOTION: to authorize out-of-state travel for the maintenance director or his designee to drive to Pease Airport in New Hampshire to pick up an air compressor. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to authorize the chairman to sign Change Order #1 for AIP 33, Wildlife Fencing Project. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to authorize the chairman to sign the warranty deed with MDOT, when it’s ready, for the conveyance of airport land in exchange for compensation in the amount of $16,020 to be paid at the time of signing. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to remove administratively, Eugene Hersom III from the airport employment rolls. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
10:45 a.m.: Break
10:50 a.m.: Back in session
EMERGENCY Management Agency:
The Emergency Management monthly report was distributed prior to the meeting and is available, upon request, in the commissioners' office. Director Sankey stated that the Safety Enhancement Grant sponsored by Maine Municipal Association has been awarded. A NIMS refresher course will be offered at Ellsworth City Hall on January 9, 2013 at 2 and 6pm. Schedule conflicts will be accommodated with a follow-up training. The recent after-action review related to the Celebrity Summit cruise tender grounding was held on November 19th. A formal report will be issued by the U.S. Coast Guard in the near future. Director Sankey stated that there is no government agency that is going to come to the rescue to save individuals and there is no bureaucratic action that is going to take over, it is up to the individuals to have protocols in place and to follow through on them when it comes to natural disasters like hurricane Sandy. EMA capabilities were discussed.
The RCC monthly report was distributed prior to the meeting and is available, upon, request, in the commissioners' office. All dispatch fees are paid in full for the year. Dispatcher interviews have been scheduled and advertising for an RCC clerk will begin shortly. The Region 4 radio frequency on Cadillac Mountain has not been in use for some time. The sheriff is working with OIT Augusta to bring the frequency up to standard. A discussion followed regarding the ownership of the frequency. The Hancock County Sheriff’s Department is a department of the County of Hancock, therefore the frequency is owned by the County of Hancock. RCC Director was asked to change the licensing frequency name to the County of Hancock. The Bull Hill communications tower is being erected today. The Blue tower (west tower) is having serious coverage issues to communities on the west side of the county. Brown’s Communications is looking into the problem. CFO Roy stated that approximately $50,000 is being requested through Community Benefits for communications outside the UT’s that would benefit Hancock County. Permission was granted to host an intern from Ellsworth High School. Director Wellman requested to purchase a new computer for the dispatch center and to utilize the replaced computer for the RCC clerk. She was requested to present numbers for the purchase at the next meeting. The commissioners were not opposed to the purchase.
MOTION: to remove administratively: Freda Keyser, Venetia Hunt and Jason McFarland from county employment rolls. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to acknowledge the resignation of part-time clerk Lori Bartlett, effective 11/7/12. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve the hire of Daniel Trenholm of Ellsworth as a full-time custodian at Step 3C $10.50 (CU wage scale), effective December 8, 2012. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to grant the Facilities Directors request for reimbursement of $425 in college tuition as prorated from his hire date. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)
Discussion: to be paid from account 06-07-600 Training & Registration.
The Maintenance Department monthly report included a brief summary of recent activity, including the completion of repairs to the courthouse front steps and plaza. Repairs and modifications to the Andrew Peters Office Building entrance and reinforcement of the handrail leading to the main entrance of the courthouse were discussed. Building and grounds fall preparations, shrub trimming and leaf clean up has been completed. Commissioner Joy stated that, in the future, he preferred to have on-site help perform this work with jail trustee help. The RFP for the superior courtroom painting project is almost completed; it will be published in the coming weeks.
MOTION: to remove administratively, Jeffrey Turcotte from the part-time/on-call patrol deputy employment roll. (Lawson/Joy 3-0, motion passed)
Lt. Pat Kane Clark requested acceptance of Quirk Auto’s bid for a new Chevrolet Tahoe with trade-in of a GMC Yukon, to be paid from Town Contract ruiser account. The dollar amount, per hour, of the Tremont contract is approximately $60. Commissioner Joy stated that vehicles’ are being traded in sooner and questioned why this was being done earlier than in the past. The 100,000 mileage threshold allows for a higher trade-in value. CFO Roy stated that the sheriff has stated that at least 3 vehicles should be purchased in 2013. Lt. Kane will present a comparison similar to the one produced by Lt. Cote a few years ago noting specifics of the cruiser fleet. Commissioner Brown didn’t see a problem with the purchase, just how the process is approached. He preferred to budget for the purchases rather than to utilize funds from a capital account. Commissioner Brown stated that if a lot of money is being built up in the town contract account, maybe some of those funds should be kicked back to the towns.
MOTION: to accept Quirk Auto’s bid for a new Chevrolet Tahoe with trade-in of GMC Yukon to be paid from Town Contract Cruiser account. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve the hire of Shelly R. Melanson of Ellsworth as a part time on call corrections officer effective 12/08/12 at $12.00 an hour. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve the hire Jeanine M. Curtis of Ellsworth as a part time on call corrections officer effective 12/08/12 at $12.00 an hour. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to remove administratively, S. Winter, J. George, C. Hurinenko, E. Marcel, L. Chauvin, K. Teirney, M. Strout and E. Richardson from the part-time/on-call corrections officer employment roll. (Joy/Lawson 3-0, motion passed)
Lt. Kane requested approval of a side letter agreement from the SO/RCC union which would increase pay to double time for officers working under the High Visibility OUI Enforcement grant. The side letter implied that an officer could be paid two times their rate of pay for working the OUI detail, Commissioner Brown was concerned that the pay would be based on double time of the time and one half overtime rate. It was clarified that the double time rate would be based on the approved base wage. Commissioner Brown preferred to have an attorney look at the agreement and stated that the document needed to be clarified to say based on the base rate. Commissioners Lawson and Joy agreed.
MOTION: to table the signing of the side letter agreement to the December 14th special meeting. (Lawson/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
12:21 p.m.: Break for lunch
1:06 p.m.: Back in session
Dan Walters, Geospatial Liaison for Maine, Massachusetts and Rhode Island USGS NSDI Partnership stated that the Maine GeoLibrary is coordinating a five-year program to collect new orthoimagery for the entire State of Maine. The program includes base imagery at two feet and one meter, with acquisition buy-up options for local governments and organizations, including both increased resolution orthos (three or six inches) and LiDAR land elevation information. York and Cumberland County’s are already participating and Androscoggin, Kennebec, Knox, Lincoln, Sagadahoc and Waldo counties are in the target acquisition area for 2013. The cost to Hancock County to participate in the base program is $30,000 plus $18,500, more or less, every three to five years. Commissioner Joy requested to see a one foot example. No action was taken on the request.
UT Special Projects Coordinator monthly report is available, upon request, in the commissioners' office. Commissioner Joy stated that the commissioners needed to come up with a procedure on how to spend approximately $245,000 in Community Benefit funds. The following suggestions were made:
- Starting or helping to fund a dental reimbursement program for all Hancock County residents. $25,000
- Working with a drug rehabilitation program to sponsor housing for drug rehab. $7,500 annually.
- Funding for communications outside the UT that would benefit Hancock County $50,000
- Funding for walking/bike/health programs in conjunction with local hospitals. $10,000
- Funding a perpetual care grant program for small cemeteries to apply for up to $2,000 ($26,000)
- Funding a community boat ramp at Little Deer Isle. $25,000.
- Micro Business loans for companies outside the UT for only Hancock County. $25,000
- Fund grants for food cupboards or soup kitchens at $2,000 each, set aside $20,000.
- Funding for a UT vehicle to be used for sign work and inspections of roads. All paid by CBF. Possibly a used pick-up from the Sheriff's Office. $5,000.
Commissioner Joy stated that there is little job creation in this proposal. Commissioner Lawson stated that she would prefer to see the funds going to the “living.” Commissioner Brown stated that the cemetery program is not for lawn mowing, but for stone restoration and that sort of thing. Commissioner Joy stated that the commissioners may have to advertise for public opinion regarding programs from Community Benefit funds.
CFO Roy suggested setting aside$7,500.00 for the next five years and to dedicate it to drug court housing. A public hearing will be scheduled in January in order to hear public comment/suggestions for community benefit funds.
The following tax appeal hearings will be scheduled/rescheduled at the December 14th CSM.
Stewart v. the Town of Deer Isle, Fiandaca v. the Town of Frenchboro, Charpentier v. Town of Frenchboro. and Harland Trust / Quansoo Trust v. Town of Sedgwick. Clerk DePrenger distributed the Old Point v. the Town of Lamoine tax appeal paperwork and stated that at the January meeting, the commissioners will be asked to decide if they have jurisdiction to hear the appeal.
Clerk DePrenger requested to purchase recording equipment from Canfield Systems. The purchase includes an audio processor, controller for the audio processor, a BIAMP Logic Box which sends communication from one point to another, 3 20" gooseneck microphones with light halos, 3 desk mounts for the microphones, a ceiling microphone, 2 microphone jacks, a digital recorder with transcription software and component that would allow video conferencing capabilities.
MOTION: to approve the purchase of recording equipment for the commissioners meeting from Canfield Systems, Inc. in the amount of $8,570. (Brown/ Joy 3-0, motion passed)
Discussion: permission was granted to over expend the commissioners computer account for this purchase.
MOTION: to approve the 2013 Holiday Schedule. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve the 2013 Buy-out/Buy-down policy as presented. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to enter into executive session under MRSA Title 1 §405 6(A): to discuss a formal complaint regarding the assignment of duties associated with the treasurer position. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
Commissioner Joy called the meeting back into regular session at 4:09 p.m. with nothing to report.