October 7, 2014

Commission Chairman, Steven E. Joy called the meeting of the Hancock County Commissioners to order at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, October 7, 2014 in the conference room of the Hancock County Courthouse, located in Ellsworth Maine with Commissioners Brown and Blasi in attendance.


Adjustments to the agenda:

MOTION: to add item 2c, Commissioners appointment to the RCC Advisory Board. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

Commission Business:

Old Business:

MOTION: to approve the minutes of the September 12, 2014 commissioners' regular meeting and budget workshop, September 16th and 24th commissioners budget workshops and September 24, 2014 Public Hearing. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)


Commissioner Blasi stated that he requested, on behalf of the commissioners, a cell phone inventory and stated that the inventory should be sent back and get the phone number for each phone.  CFO Roy stated that per an agreement with Sheriff Clark made approximately three + years ago, phone numbers would not be publically released, he explained that patrol deputies who work at night may sleep during the day and he was hesitant to release their numbers due to the agreement with the sheriff.  When asked by Commissioner Joy, Commissioner Blasi acknowledge that the CFO's explanation did what he wanted it to do.

Commissioner Joy stated that the County Administrator job description was compiled from job descriptions from two other counties.  He stated that it covers most of the areas that he would see the administrator do.  Commissioner Brown stated that the job description was “pretty much boiler plate” compared to what he has seen and “I think I can work with this.”  Authority still comes from the commissioners and elected officials, the commissioners can direct the individual as to where they want him/her to go.  Oversees vs. Supervises was clarified although supervision of the airport was questioned by Commissioner Brown.  Knox County Regional Airport is under taxation and is a department of Knox County.  Commissioner Blasi read the following statement, “This position would create an unnecessary bureaucracy.  Instead of funding this, the same County Administrator salary amount should be used for other contingencies such as to pay for fire and Emergency Medical Services contracts to cover the Unorganized Territories.  These are services that the county is responsible to provide for UT residents.  If the County expands operations, departmental managers should be hired accordingly.  The decision to budget for a county administrator should be tabled until after the November 4th election.”  Commissioner Joy stated that he was asking Commissioner Blasi if he had any comments about the job description.  Commissioner Blasi responded "that was it" to which Commissioner Joy stated "that was a grandstand about the position itself, I'm talking about the job description."  Commissioner Blasi responded "that was my comment."

MOTION: to accept the County Administrator job description with a caveat that if we do go out for an RFP for a County Administrator that the job description can be tweaked, but this is the base that we want to go into this with if, in fact, we want to hire a county administrator. (Brown/Joy 2-1 motion passed, Blasi opposed) Discussion: In the future the airport will be discussed for inclusion/exclusion in the job description.  Commissioner Joy stated that it is his belief that supervision is a helping hand for all departments, this position will have to work with all departments to help them. He is not seeing it as a disciplinary position.  The county administrator needs to be the person with continuity as the commissioners may change every few years.  Commissioner Brown stated that he still preferred to have the conversation regarding supervision of the airport.

MOTION: to nominate Castine Selectman Peter F. Vogell as the elected official representative to the RCC Advisory Board. (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: Commissioner Brown turned contact with Mr. Vogell over to Director Wellman.

Office of Financial Affairs:

MOTION: to approve September General Fund and Airport Payroll Warrants #14-35, #14-36, #14-37 and #14-38 in the aggregate of $204,475.13. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve September General Fund and Airport Expense Warrants #14-38, #14-39, #14-40, #14-41, #14-42 and #14-43 in the aggregate of $639,650.73. (Blasi/Brown 3-0, motion passed) Discussion:

MOTION: to approve September Jail and UT Fund Payroll Warrants #15-09, #15-10, #15-11 and #15-12 in the aggregate of $86,898.48. (Blasi/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve September Jail and UT Fund Expense Warrants #15-09, #15-10, #15-11, #15-12 and #15-13 in the aggregate of $284,224.26. (Blasi/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

Update on AR: The outstanding BHB&T funds are associated with the sheriff’s department, for a detail in the amount of $220; Sheriff's Administrative Assistant, Michelle Cote believes it has been paid and is a double posting.  CFO Roy stated that towns have until the end of October to pay their county taxes.

MOTION: to approve September expenditures in the health insurance account in the amount of $146,731.30. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve a request for expenditure from capital reserve account G1-3015-20 in the amount of $762.91, to reimburse the City of Ellsworth for Clean and Calibrate Fit Test Machine. (Joy/Blasi 3-0 motion passed)

MOTION: to approve a request for expenditure from capital reserve account G2-3030-20 in the amount of $1,092.10, for AIP37-Arconas Invoice #00019912 (50% due) Local Share of 50% of furnishings. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve a request for expenditure from capital reserve account G2-3010-30 in the amount of $1,688, for re-tread of four grader tires, Stratham Tire, Inc. Inv#8090652. (Blasi/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve a request for expenditure from capital reserve account G2-3030-20 in the amount of $656.88, for AIP37, No Frills Oil Co, Inc. INV#436307 to purchase two, 1,000 gallon LP tanks on blocks with regulator. (Blasi/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve a request for expenditure from capital reserve account G2-3030-20 in the amount of $11,958.21, for AIP37, Nickerson & O'Day, Inc Requisition #013, Local Share Only. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve a request for expenditure from capital reserve account G2-3010-90 in the amount of $1,092, for Airport Line Striper Bid Awarded to: Franklin Paint Co, invoice covers the paint and the Type 1 beads. (Blasi/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve the purchase six ballistic vests from reserve account G1-3022-00 in the amount of $6,785. (Blasi/Joy 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: the approximate price per vest is $1,100.  There are eighteen total vests that need replacement, next year five move vests will be replaced and so on; normally vests last 5 years.  50% of these funds will be reimbursed from the State.

CFO Roy stated that the OFA has two un-deposited checks from a former employee of the jail in the amount of $224.41 each. Commissioner Blasi asked if they were overdue.  CFO Roy asked to dispose of the checks and make the promissory note null.  In contacting the bank last Thursday, CFO Roy stated that there are not enough funds in the account to cash the checks.  Commissioner Brown questioned if this was considered negotiating a worthless instrument.  CFO Roy stated that a majority of the funds have been received.  Commissioner Brown suggested turning the checks over to the Chief Deputy for payment.  4-predated checks were cashed with 2 left.  Commissioner Joy questioned if the former employee had been contacted in January, February, March etc.  CFO Roy did not directly answer the question.  The county’s cost to pursue the funds would be for labor.  Commissioner Brown stated that in his opinion it is a criminal offense and an attorney does not need to be contacted.

MOTION: to turn it over to the sheriff’s department to pursue it under criminal law. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

Regarding the AR; CFO Roy suggested taking two of the top five individuals, Blake Thomas and Peter D. Fagonde, to Small Claims Court due to non-payment of court ordered action for unpaid jail housing.  Commissioner Brown questioned why this was not written off.  CFO Roy replied because it was court ordered payment.  Funds are owed because the court can order up to $25 a day for every day of stay in the jail; all funds go to the county.  The existing DA has not pursued any funds so far, in her tenure.  Sheriff's Administrative Assistant, Michelle Cote, suggested contacting the person’s probation officer rather than costing the county more funds to pursue it through court.

MOTION: to authorize the CFO to try to collect these funds, whether it is through small claims or through the probation officer, of all five outstanding accounts. (Joy/Brown 2-1, motion passed, Blasi opposed) Discussion: Commissioner Blasi requested breaking out the motion to separate Small Claims Court as he and Commissioner Brown were uncomfortable with going to Small Claims Court.

CFO Roy stated that the jail and UT Audits have been completed and the drafts are being done by Runyon Kersteen & Ouellette, the General Fund Audit is being reviewed again by Kathy Tyson, as reported last time, and we should have it released in final draft form next week and in final form by the end of the month; we should have all three of them by the end of the month.  Commissioner Joy questioned if we have heard anything back from the State on the UT audit and if they are requesting anymore information?  CFO Roy responded no, not to my knowledge, I think we have supplied them with everything that they wanted.  Commissioner Joy instructed CFO Roy contact them by phone adding "if it’s important to come, it’s important to get it done."


Columbia Air Services - BHB, LLC is seeking to expand "Parcel A" as described in their operating lease agreement for the purposes of installing a pedestrian walkway to their parking lot.  A draft lease was presented for approval along with a map depicting the old and new lease boundaries.  The increase in their lease lines, to include the walkway, would stay in the boundaries of their lease, an additional walkway would connect almost to the sidewalk of the terminal building.  The expansion from 61,453 sq. ft to 71,700 sq. ft for parcel A, at .12 cents per foot correlates to a $1,200 annual increase in their fixed payment.  Manager Madeira stated that in the future, Columbia Air Services may have to install a handicapped spot; the new lease line may accommodate that future change.  The annual income from Columbia Air is approximately $140,000.  Commissioner Joy stated that having a walkway that connects to the terminal building, at their expense, makes sense.  Manager Madeira agreed and supported the request.  The “gray” walkway is not presently installed; the airport would have to fund this expense.  Commissioner Blasi stated his confusion as to which “gray” area was to be reworked and requested to see the language describing the gray area in the agreement.  The present Columbia lease does not address the additional land, the new lease does request the additional land for the walkway or “gray area.”  Funds are deposited in the FBO account 40-400.  Commissioner Joy explained the progression of the project 1) ask for an expansion of lease and 2) explain what/why they want the expansion.  The airport currently has granite curbing that should be maintained in its present condition.  Commissioner Joy presented an example of the curbing with a proposed handicapped parking space; he then questioned who maintained the area.  Manager Madeira stated that currently, it is the airport’s responsibility.  Manager Madeira stated that if something is in the lease area/boundary, it is Columbia’s responsibility to maintain.

MOTION: to amend the lease between Columbia Air Services and the County per the lease that has been presented today. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to authorize the chairman to sign the lease between Columbia Air Services and the County per the lease that has been presented today. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve the chairman to sign the contract with Hi-Way Safety Systems, for the Pavement Remarking Project scheduled for this fall. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: this project will be fronted this year by the airport and will be reimbursed by the FAA next year.  Commissioner Blasi questioned where the money to front the project comes from.  CFO Roy replied, from the airport fund.  The FAA inspection date has been moved back to November 6-8.  Commissioner Blasi requested that this project be listed separately on the AR.  CFO Roy stated that he preferred not to list it separately, Commissioner Joy agreed with CFO Roy.

Regarding the airport monthly report; account E40-20-100 is already overspent, Fairpoint fiber is scheduled to be installed in the near future.  Commissioner Blasi thanked Manager Madeira for this notification.  Manager Madeira has been working with Hoyle Tanner in creating a new hanger in former Taxiway Delta.  The cost may be rolled into the long term lease.  The full scale airport emergency exercise went well.  Excavation and box cutting is complete between taxiway C and taxiway A, the project will be completed by the end of October.  Regarding the supplemental windcone & replacement of obstruction polls north of runway 22, the problems with the windcones will be fixed and the entire structure may be replaced.  The specs called for incandescent lighting but the company installed LED lighting.  Commissioner Brown questioned when the TSA contract with Securitas ran out, approximately August 2015, Manager Madeira will check on this information.  Securitas is at the airport per TSA order/directive.  Commissioner Blasi stated that the pavement in front of the row of hangers is a mess and questioned if anyone else thought…..(he didn’t complete his sentence.)  Commissioner Joy stated that it is an impervious surface now and it is being looked into for repairs during 2015.  Manager Madeira stated that he thought that there would be more problems if the pavement were ripped up rather than fixing the pavement.  The Town of Trenton ramp project was briefly discussed, to that end, the land is the responsibility of the County of Hancock.

Registry of Deeds:

MOTION: to approve the purchase of a copier for the Registry of Deeds from Capital Account #3012-10. (Blasi/Joy 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: The current copier located in the Registry of Deeds will move to the Registry of Probate at no charge.  Commissioner Brown questioned if the copier or equipment line would be deleted.  It was Register Curtis' intention to use the equipment account for the purchase.  The Registry of Deeds does not need a new copier, they are donating their copier to the Registry of Probate because Probate does not have any money and this was discussed during the budget process.  CFO Roy stated that the Deeds maintenance agreement would not change, but Probates will change by approximately $100 per year.


Director Walls stated that the commissioners have been apprised of the items included in the monthly report; Electrical update: the sheriff’s corridor and 2nd floor halls are complete, the District Court roof warranty is in hand and in order, the Peters/DA heating project is going well and should be completed in a couple of weeks.

Director Walls stated that Peters/DA ramp cost should be taken out of the Building capital reserves account, there are two projects: 1) to replace the ramp with a more permanent, more suitable structure and 2) to provide a pad for the dumpster as it is sliding down the hill due to snow and ice.  There is no money in his budget for these two projects.  The cost for the ramp would be $2,275 from Cirard Masonry and $2,250 for the pad.  Commissioner Joy was concerned with where the water and ice was coming from on the ramp and was in favor of replacing the ramp as employees have fallen in past years.  Commissioner Brown questioned how to prevent the ramp from freezing.  Director Walls stated that there is a steel plate at the end of the ramp that freezes and there is a gutter over the current ramp.  Commissioner Brown suggested installing a heated walkway; a heat track system will be budgeted for FY15 which should take care of snow and ice melt.  A heat track lasts approximately 10 years.  Commissioner Joy preferred the above ground heat track as the ramp would not have to be broken up to be fixed and could be thrown away and replaced if needed; it could also be put on a timer.  Commissioner Joy preferred to complete the project this fall for the winter.  Funds would come from the Building Capital Account 3011-00.  The cost for the entire electric mat/heated walkway would be approximately $1,300.  A hot water heater may be needed for in ground heating.  Hydronics will be installed and monitored during the winter.  Solar panels may be able to heat the walkway.

MOTION: to pay for the project from account 3011-00. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)


More information has been requested regarding the Brooksville tower; RF’s and Propagation Maps have been requested.  Commissioner Brown and Director Wellman will continue to seek further information.  Upgrades for the radio system is needed, the cost will be $625 to $650 to bring it up to the next level.  The warranty will expire in January but, is extended annually.  Once the current issues are fixed, the next level upgrades will be completed.  The equipment usually lasts approximately 10 years; Hancock County was the 2nd agency in the country to install our particular radio system.  Funds should be put away annually to replace the system which cost approximately $100,000.  Director Wellman touched again on UT emergency response.  Director Wellman stated that the airport exercise went well and that she was impressed at the level of cooperation between the participants.

MOTION: to accept the resignation of Rachel Allen as part-time RCC Administrative Assistant. (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: this employee is still a part-time dispatcher and continues to do QA work.  This is a part-time position that works less than 30 hours per week.


MOTION: to approve the hire of Darren Nadeau of Winterport, Jodi Bickford of Winter Harbor and David Davis of Bucksport as a part-time, on call, as needed, Corrections Officers at the rate of $12 per hour, no benefits included.  This position averages 29 hours per week. (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: this would bring the part-time roll to 6 individuals.  CFO Roy stated that we may now be required to document hours worked under the Affordable Health Care Act in 30 day intervals, rather than annually due to having over 100 employees.

MOTION: to approve the promotion of Matthew Saucier of Old Town from part-time to full-time corrections officer at Step 9A, $14.62 an hour, effective October 11, 2014. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: This officer is not yet certified.

Unorganized Territory:

Regarding the Monthly Report; signs are disappearing in the UT.  UT Supervisor Billings spoke with the Aurora Fire Chief regarding the fire truck and response.  It was suggested that a commissioner and the UT Supervisor meet with the chief and fire department members to discuss the issue further.  Forestry has been contacted regarding a fire truck at a cost of $63,000 with a 3-4 month turn around.  Hancock Wind was approved in September, but will not be on line until April 1, 2017 and TIF funds would not be received until the fall of 2017.  The fire truck agreement was separate from the TIF agreement.  CFO Roy stated that Hancock Wind will be commercially online in the fall of 2015, Community Benefit Funds would be received shortly thereafter along with the first ½ payment of the fire truck the second ½ payment will be received the next year, TIF funds would be assessed in April 2016.  Commissioner Blasi questioned if Hancock Wind's request to amend the DEP Permit would change the TIF agreement with Hancock County, CFO Roy and Supervisor Billings responded, no this does not change the TIF agreement with Hancock County; the footprint of the TIF is also not affected.  The height of the turbines vs. the per watt payment was discussed.  By increasing the height of the towers and reducing the number of towers, the County of Hancock should see an increase in the original proposed revenues.  The Hancock Wind TIF agreement included 17 towers, per Supervisor Billings.

The following snow removal bids were opened on September 30, 2014 at 9:30 a.m. by Commissioner Joy with Clerk DePrenger and Supervisor Billings in attendance:

Fletchers Landing Township:

Barry's Trucking: $16,250, Liability Insurance was not included.

R.F. Jordan & Sons: $14,500, Liability Insurance was not included.

Township #9:

City Line Sand & Gravel: $3,995, Liability Insurance was not included.

Bids were not submitted for Townships 22 and 28, therefore, the previous contractor was contacted to provide service. Supervisor Billings was assured that Mr. Perry would provide service at the same rate as last year.  Equipment lists and liability insurances are in place at this time.

MOTION: to award the 2014-2015 Snow Removal Bid for Fletchers Landing Township to R. F. Jordan & Sons in the amount of $14,500. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to award the Township 9 Snow Removal Bid to City Line Sand & Gravel in the amount of $3,995. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to award the snow contract for Townships #22 & 28 in the amount of $13,000 to Randy Perry of Cherryfield pending receipt of liability and workers comp insurance. (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

Regarding Rural Broadband; Contact regarding options with MMA has been discussed, the law has changed to allow areas serviced by dial up to be included in the Dial-Me-Up grant through Connect ME.  Cable providers were questioned.  Fairpoint has a broadband component and are tied into work with Direct TV.  Time Warner offers TV, Broadband and Telephone services.  Commissioners Joy and Brown suggested contacting representatives from each company in order to make presentations to the commissioners; a workshop will be scheduled to hear presentations.

Commissioner Joy stated that transportation within the TIF may need to be revisited.  Supervisor Billings stated that the State Board of Education was contacted regarding the bus route for Fletcher’s Landing Township.  When RSU 24 was formed, the transportation could be provided through Eastbrook transportation.  Commissioner Joy questioned if RSU 24 could be contacted and contracted to continue the service.  A public transportation system could contract with the State Board of Education to provide transportation.  The County could also purchase a bus to provide the service.  Commissioner Brown questioned why the UT State people are not addressing this issue with the State Board of Education.  FLT children are riding the bus at least 2 hours more than they should each day.  CFO Roy stated that a public service bus could be contracted with to perform the service.  Supervisor Billings was charged with looking into the issue in order to solve the problem.  Downeast Transportation and the Island Explorer will be contacted.

The November Commissioners Regular Meeting was rescheduled to November 7th at 8:30 a.m.

Sierra Communications Server Presentation:

Dylan Sauce of Sierra Communications presented the commissioners with a quote in the amount of $13,125 to update the Admin Network Server.  The current server was purchased in 2005, servers usually last 5-6 years.  The quoted server has plenty of room to expand.  If the RCC were relocated, they could still utilize the Admin Network server from a different location.  Due to the age of the current server, labor costs were increased in the quote because of extended steps needed to move information.  The purchase would be made through the Technology Reserve account 3011-01.  The server would be updated once a need becomes apparent.  Updates, after installation, are included in the Managed Services Contract.  Version upgrades are not part of the Managed Services Contract.  Commissioner Blasi questioned how long this project could be stalled; due to the age of the current server, Mr. Sauce recommended replacement as soon as possible.  Exchange is the mail component of the server.  The previous server was a Small Business Server.  The quote was explained line by line.  Sierra Communications is an authorized technician for Dell.

MOTION: to upgrade the HC Admin Server and to pay for it out of the Courthouse Technology account #3011-01 in the amount of $13,125. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: Commissioner Brown questioned the single source provider.  Confidentiality, security and the existing service provider was considered when questioning single sourcing.  The Sierra contract expires in March 2015.  Commissioner Joy questioned if the upgrading of the server would have a ripple effect on the software of current users.  Transferring of programs when purchased with the computer was explained.  Commissioner Brown questioned if all software in Hancock County was standardized?  CFO Roy stated that there are old versions of software being used within the county.  Commissioner Brown was okay with the purchase of the server, but wanted operating systems standardized in the future.  An inventory of county systems will be provided by Sierra in order to help with this transition.

MOTION: to authorize the chairman to sign the HC Admin Server quote. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

The question of utilization of “the Cloud” vs. purchasing multi licenses was discussed.  A minimum quantity of 5 is required for volume licensing; typically the cost is $400 per PC.  Home licenses cost approximately $125 per computer.

MOTION: to adjourn. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)



C. DePrenger

County Clerk


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