The regular meeting of the Hancock County Commissioners was brought to order by Commissioner Clark at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday February 4, 2020 in the conference room of the County courthouse located in Ellsworth, ME with Commissioners Blasi and Wombacher in attendance.

Adjustments to / approval of agenda:

MOTION: add advertising for Airport Manager’s job as item 5e (Blasi/Clark 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: approve agenda as amended (Blasi/Clark 3-0, motion passed)

Public Comment: none

Employee recognition:

The commission recognized Deputy Jeffrey McFarland for 30 years of service to the County of Hancock.

Meeting Minutes:

MOTION: Approve the minutes of the January 21, 2020 Commissioners’ Special Meeting as presented in the packet (Wombacher/Clark 3-0, motion passed)


Monthly report-

UT Supervisor Billings reported that the county has been invited to participate in the Maine Bicentennial Parade.  A committee has met and is working on gathering interest and ideas.  The commissioners said they were in support of Hancock County participation.

Kitty Barbee / UT TIF loan materials-

The commission reviewed loan materials provided by Barbee.  There was some discussion about whether the program would handle grants in addition to loans.  UT Supervisor Billings and Barbee said they would report after a phone meeting with the State to discuss specifics of the TIF.  The commission agreed to continue to develop the loan application and process.


Monthly report-

Airport Manager Brad Madeira reported there were no aircraft incidents or workplace injuries in January.  Although there were 7 snow removal days, the airport continued to operate.  The lighting project will continue in the spring and should be completed within 2 weeks.

Update regarding Genair, Inc. Small Claims Court case-

Madeira reported that a letter was submitted to the court on January 10, 2020; defendant is claiming he did not receive a copy of the statement and has asked for dismissal.

 MOTION: Authorize the revised Airport Rescue Firefighter/Maintenance Worker Job Description as presented (Blasi/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Follow up request to go out for bid for a new Airport Pickup Truck-

Airport Manager Madeira presented a bid specifications sheet for a 4-wheel drive pickup truck with plow.  This was first discussed in 2018 but action has been delayed because the type of vehicle required was not available until now.

MOTION: allow the Airport Manager to seek bids for the purchase of 4-wheel drive pickup truck with plow with specifications included (Blasi/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: with deepest regret accept the resignation of Airport Manager Brad Madeira effective February 14, 2020 (Clark/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: advertise to fill the position of Airport Manager (Blasi/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)


MOTION: Approval to promote Robert Lisee of Ellsworth to temporary full time corrections officer at the part time rate with benefits of sick and holiday comp, effective February 8, 2020 (Clark/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: Approval to hire Trisha Cary of Ellsworth as a part time on call as needed corrections officer, at the part time rate of pay with no benefits, effective February 8, 2020 (Wombacher/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: Approval to sign a one year contract with Lisa Parkin, RN of Bar Harbor to assist with the jail’s Medical Assisted Treatment. To be paid from “25-40-401/Nursing Contractual” (Wombacher/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

This is covered under the MAT contract with no cost to the County. 

Discussion of EMDC funding

JA Richardson reported the MAT grant covers a portion of the cost of counseling; this frees up roughly $500 that can be used by EMDC for recovery counseling.  Richardson said EMDC indicated this was enough to cover the cost.  There was some discussion about the $7,500 that was approved at the previous meeting.  It was unclear if this was needed in addition to the $500 each month.  Richardson will clarify what funds are needed before the next meeting. 

Clothes washing machine repair / purchase- 

The current machine needs repair; oil is leaking from the machine.  The estimated cost for repair is $2,397.47.  The cost of a new machine is $11,504.00.  The budget holds $8,000 for storage; these funds will not be required for that purpose.  The commission agreed a new machine should be purchased.

MOTION: purchase from Yankee a new Milner washing machine at the cost of $11,504.00; $8,000 will come from account 24-48-80. The balance will come out of the jail’s building account (Clark/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)


Third floor storage- Facilities Director Walls estimated the cost of labor and materials would be $3,500 for walls and partitions.  The commission will continue discussion at the next meeting and make a final determination on a contractor.  The commission agreed to install a shower/changing room in the exercise room on the third floor. 

MOTION: to construct the fitness center and changing room configuration in the third floor gym area (Blasi/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Walls submitted a quote from Nichols Plumbing for $4,306.00, with an additional cost of $1,732.00 for a shower with faucet installed. Commissioner Clark expressed concern about additional costs associated with the project.  There was some discussion about developing a materials list and total cost.  Walls said he thought the cost would be within $7,500.  CA Adkins suggested the commission approve the motion with the understanding that the cost of the project will not exceed $7,500.  The commission discussed whether this project should be put out to bid or gather quotes from several vendors.  Walls said he thought Nichols’ quote qualified as sole source and was in the County’s best interest.  Since Nichols is the regular plumbing repair vendor for the County and the estimate from that vendor has already been made public, the commission agreed to contract with Nichols for this job.

MOTION: contract with Nichols to do the bathroom plumbing at a price not to exceed $6,038.00 (Clark/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Commissioner Clark said Walls should continue to develop an estimate of the entire project.

Mold and Radon testing in the basement- after some questioning about air quality in the basement, testing was performed and some mold was found but was taken care of.  Detected radon levels were high; Facilities Director Walls is researching mitigation solutions, including improving ventilation. 

MOTION: amend the gross maximum price (GMP) to Penobscot Company for a total of $439,070 for RCC Expansion Project (Wombacher/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

Break 10:34 a.m. - 10:41 a.m.

After a phone meeting with Tina Mullins from Dept. of Economic Community Development, UT Supervisor Billings reported that if the business is in the UT, the funding is allowed; if a UT resident wanted to build a business in Ellsworth, this would not be allowed.  It’s important to look at where the business is licensed.  The commissioners have the authority to develop the criteria however they choose; the statute is loosely defined.  Commissioner Blasi expressed concern about issuing loans that are not repaid.  Barbee said to follow the process and do everything possible to mitigate risk and keep the loan from going bad.  Billings said loans that are repaid can be put into the UT general fund.


Monthly report: RCC Director Conary reported that Hancock County is among the top ten PSAPs in the state in terms of call volume.  HCRCC is the 10th busiest PSAP, with 17,266 incoming 911 calls.  Commissioner Blasi asked if this rise in call volume translated to additional funding from the state.  Conary said no, but the increase allows for the addition of another 911 console.  Director Conary recommended tying off the existing cabling in the ceiling because of the vast amount and the difficulty of identifying it, even though much of the cable has been removed.  All new cabling is being labeled.  Conary continues to work with the console company for an appropriate design. 

MOTION: Approval to hire Anastasia Dayoff-Osage of Franklin as full time dispatcher, at step 9C effective February 1, 2020 (Blasi/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Dayhoff-Osage has worked for the County as a FT dispatcher in the past and is fully trained.

MOTION: approval to transfer $50,000 from G 1-3012-60 to R 07-910 for purchase of the AVTEC Radio Console (Wombacher/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)

On January 21, 2020 the Commissioners approved a motion to accept the amount of $439,329.00 as the guaranteed maximum price for the RCC Expansion Project and today signed a contract in the amount of $439,070.00.  The action taken on January 21, 2020 has been superseded by the action taken today; the amount agreed to is less. 


MOTION: accept the Treasurer’s warrant memo report for the month of January as presented (Blasi/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

The Treasurer’s memo listed the following:

January GF, Airport, and Jail Payroll Warrants #19-52, #20-1, #20-2, #20-3, and #20-4 in the aggregate amount of $474,579.26;

January GF, Airport, and Jail Expense Warrants #19-91, #19-92, #19-93, #20-1,  #20-2, #20-3, #19-94, #19-95, #19-96, #20-4, #20-5, and #20-6 in the aggregate amount of $1,285,663.64;  

January UT Payroll Warrants #20-26, #20-27, #20-28, #20-29 and #20-30 in the aggregate of $1,070.60;

January UT Expense Warrants #20-12 and #20-13 in the aggregate of $23,090.87

MOTION: Sign the recapitulation of taxes for 2020 (Wombacher /Blasi 3-0, motion passed)


MOTION: authorize the Registrar of Deeds to scan in the old road documents for placement on the County and Registry of Deeds websites (Blasi/ Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

The commissioners signed the final versions of the Meeting and Agenda Policy and the Appointed / Exempt Policy.  Both policies had been approved at previous meetings.

The commission discussed the disposal of old computer hardware.  They determined that once the machines are made secure they could be available to employees for a small fee to cover the cost of cleaning the existing data from the machines.

MOTION: to adjourn 11:45 (Blasi/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Respectfully submitted,

Rebekah Knowlton,

Deputy County Administrator




Official Website of Hancock County, Maine.                              Copyright 2021 All rights reserved.