Audio recordings of the meeting are available upon request

Commission Chairman, Steven E. Joy called the regular meeting of the Hancock County Commissioners to order at 8:03 am on Wednesday, December 28, 2016 in the conference room of the County courthouse located in Ellsworth, ME with Commissioners Brown and Blasi in attendance.

Adjustments to the agenda:

MOTION: To add MainePers to 6(b) and move Executive Session 6(c) to agenda (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

8:00 Dave Fowler- Hancock Wind Community Benefit Agreement discussion

Dave Fowler, acting as a “transition representative” explained his history with the topic, and indicated that he was in attendance to come to an agreement about how the Community Benefits payment is formulated. He said he recalls originally it was not based on capacity of the units. He said it was based on good faith that if the unit is generating more electricity that Hancock County would also get a benefit on the Community Benefits side. He said the language in the agreement is ambiguous. They have a limiting factor in the agreement of 3.0, even though the potential is 3.3. Commissioner Brown asked what the permit called for- 3.0 or 3.3; the initial permit was for 3.0 then amendment for 3.3.  Fowler said even though it’s a 3.3 machine, it’s a 3.0 output, that’s the installed capacity; that it comes down to stability, you’re obligated to stay within parameters, and it’s a mechanical issue. Commissioner Joy expressed the need to go back to the minutes of the early meetings to determine what language was used.


Treasurer Eldridge informed the Commission about this week’s expenses- she anticipates that the expenses this week will be around $300,000-$325,000.


MOTION: to accept the resignation of Dana Austin effective December 30, 2016 (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

Discussion: Commissioner Joy said we are finally seen the impact of low pay, he is leaving to take a position with a $5/hr pay increase. Still owe him for accrued vacation time.

MOTION: approval to advertise for a full time deputy (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION:  approval to expend $7,500.00 from capital reserve account G1-3021-36 for K-9 Dual Purpose (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: approval to expend $2,003.64 from capital reserve account G1-3021-36 for Installation of K-9 equipment into cruiser (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to approve the expenditure of capital G1-3014-30 2017 Ford Explorer $4,058.91and G1-3011-70 for Ford Explorer Balance $23,299.09 total of $27,358.00 (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)


MOTION: to approve the expenditure of $1,994.00 from capital reserve account G1-3012-60 for Waldo 2 tower site FCC licensing fees (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed) 


MOTION: to approve an increase of Notice to Creditors to $60.00 per notice from $50.00 (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

Discussion: Registrar Coughlin said this is an increase of $10 per notice; it is reflected in the 2017 revenue. She said as far as she knows it has not been increased in years.

County Administrator:

Administrator Report: CA Adkins updated the Commission on the 2017 budget books, as they are being prepared. He reported that he and Rebekah would be meeting with Acadia Benefits regarding the wellness program. On the Bull Hill TIF payment, we still have not received the payment. There was some discussion on the CB funds appropriated for Hancock County Recovery & Workforce Program and how they would be distributed. They agreed to send half now after receiving a letter of request, and the other half in 6 months. CA Adkins spoke about the need to bring Madden from RKO for a pre-audit process. There was support from the Commission for CA Adkins to meet with Madden. Commissioner Joy would like RKO to perform the 2016 audit, and send an RFP beginning with FY 2017. Commissioner Blasi would like an RFP beginning with a 2016 audit. Commissioner Brown was concerned about the time that would take. He stressed the importance of having an audit before beginning the budget process, he agrees with Commissioner Joy.

MainePers discussion:

Commissioner Brown was not offered membership in MainePers, he is eligible to sign up now, at a cost to him, and a cost to the County. Commissioner Brown said he is not sure he wants to sign up for MainePers, and would ask that the County “buy him out”, thereby potentially paying less.  The estimated (estimated by MainePers) expense to Commissioner Brown is $6,369.54, and the estimated expense to the County is $8,736. Commissioner Brown will attempt to communicate again with MainePers to make further inquiries.

MOTION: to enter Executive Session under MRSA Title 1 §405 6(a) personnel matter- County Administrator performance review. (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

Back to regular session at 11:21 reporting the following: the County Administrator has successfully met the County Commissioners’ expectations for his first 7 months in service.

MOTION to adjourn, 11:30 a.m. (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed)

Respectfully submitted,

Rebekah Knowlton

Executive Assistant to the County Administrator









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