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COMMISSIONERS REGULAR MEETING

The regular meeting of the Hancock County Commissioners was brought to order by Commissioner Clark at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday January 5, 2021.    Commissioner Wombacher, Commissioner Paradis, County Administrator Scott Adkins and Deputy County Administrator Rebekah Knowlton were also in attendance, as well as several Department Heads.  Due to Covid-19 social distancing requirements, the meeting was held remotely via Zoom.

Vote: to elect a Chairman-

Commissioner Clark opened the floor for nominations.  Commissioner Wombacher nominated Commissioner Clark for Chairman for 2021.  Nominations ceased and the vote was called.  Commissioner Clark was elected Chairman for 2021, without opposition.

Adjustments to / approval of agenda:

MOTION: Move to approve the amended agenda as presented (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Public Comment: none

Commissioners:

MOTION: Approve the minutes of the December 15, 2020 Commissioners’ Special Meeting (Wombacher/Paradis 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: Approve the minutes of the December 29, 2020 Commissioners’ Special Meeting (Wombacher/Paradis 3-0, motion passed)

Airport:

Airport Manager Leroy Muise updated the Commission with his monthly report.  Manager Muise has continued his attempts to make contact with Silver Airways regarding payment due with no result. 

MOTION: Move to accept and file the Airport Manager’s report as presented and authorize the County Administrator and Airport Manager to research collections of Silver with legal advice (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION:  Move to authorize the Chair to sign the Phase I Archaeological Assessment contract with Jacob’s Engineering not to exceed the sum of $8,249.00 as presented (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

UT:

MOTION: approve the Small Animal Clinic contract for the year 2021 as presented (Wombacher/Paradis 3-0, motion passed)

Probate:

MOTION: Move to pay the Deputy Register of Probate a stipend of $1,325.40 as this amount is consistent with County policy and further thank Ms. Jordan for her work in keeping this office operational (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

RCC:

MOTION: Move to accept and file the RCC Monthly report as presented (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: accept the contract as presented for RCC with the City of Ellsworth for $31,562.76 for 2021 (Wombacher/Paradis 3-0, motion passed)

Maintenance:

Facilities Director Dennis Walls submitted his monthly report, as well as the Capital Improvement Plan.

MOTION accept and file the Director’s monthly report as presented (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

The Commissioners discussed having Facilities Director Walls revise the Capital Improvement Plan to include projected costs and combine that with the 10 year plan.

MOTION: Move to accept and file the Facilities Director’s monthly report as presented and request that the Director provide preliminary cost estimates for the items contained in the submitted capital improvement plan  (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: Move to approve and issue the RFP for the Sheriff’s Office Roof Project as presented (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

The roof was last replaced in 1986.  Director Walls said that recent weather events have made it clear that it needs to be replaced.

UT Supervisor Millard Billings joined the meeting and updated the Commissioners with his monthly report.  Following up on previous business, there was some discussion about scheduling the meeting to discuss marijuana in the Unorganized Territory.  The meeting was scheduled for January 19, 2021 at 10 a.m.

Sheriff:

Bids for vehicles were opened during the December 15, 2020 CSM.  The bids were for 2 vehicles, but Sheriff Kane now wants to purchase 4 Tahoes from Quirk in Augusta, at a cost of $134,825.16; this amount reflects the trade-in of 2 vehicles.  Commissioner Clark suggested supporting local business by purchasing 2 from Quirk in Augusta with the trades and 2 from Darlings with no trade in.

MOTION: buy 4 Tahoes at $39,565.52 which is $158,262.08 minus $23,436.92 for the trade-ins, for a net total of $134,825.16 from Quirk (Wombacher/Paradis 2-1, Clark opposed)

Commissioner Clark said his opposition was in reference to his desire to purchase locally; he is in support of the purchase of 4 vehicles.

Treasurer:

MOTION: approve the warrant memo as issued (Wombacher/Paradis 3-0, motion passed)

The Treasurer’s memo listed the following:

December GF, Airport and Jail Payroll Warrants #20-48, #20-49, #20-50, #20-51, and #20-52 in the aggregate amount of $503,267.04;

December GF, Airport and Jail Expense Warrants #20-67, #20-68, #20-69, #20-70, #20-71, and #20-72 in the aggregate amount of $1,355,999.45;

December UT Payroll Warrants #21-22, #21-23, #21-24, #21-25, and #21-26 in the aggregate amount of $1,372.55;

December UT Expense Warrants #21-11 and #21-12 in the aggregate amount of $18,331.12

MOTION: Move to accept and file the financial reports as presented (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Commissioners:

The Commissioners reviewed the Travel and Subsistence Reimbursement Policy.

MOTION: Roman Numeral XX Section 1 Mileage Rate- the first sentence will be as follows: Employees who are properly authorized to use their personal vehicles in the performance of their duties will be reimbursed at the mileage rate as established annually by the Commissioners (Clark/Paradis 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: Move to set the mileage rate for FY2021 to .50 which is the mean of the State of Maine and IRS mileage reimbursement rates (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: Move to authorize the Treasurer and Deputy County Administrator to issue checks up to $1,000 (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: Move to pay travel expenses for Commissioners living over 5 miles from the County Seat, consistent with past practice (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

The Commissioners reviewed the Community Benefits / TIF reports and the process used for utilizing the funds.  UT Supervisor Billings explained the appropriate uses of TIF funds versus Community Benefit funds. 

Regarding the previously filed abatement appeal, CA Adkins reported that Applicant Meisel and the Town of Eastbrook have reached an agreement and the abatement appeal has been withdrawn.

Commissioner Clark expressed frustration with the MCCA Board of Directors.  After discussion, Commissioner Clark agreed that it would be beneficial to keep a representative from the County and attend meetings if desired.

MOTION: Move to appoint the Chair to represent Hancock County in the MCCA and the Risk Pool Board of Directors and further appoint the County Administrator to be his proxy, with the discretion of attending meetings as he sees fit, and be the primary point of contact with the Risk Pool for 2021 (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Commissioner Clark said he believed it is a conflict of interest to have a Commissioner sit on the Board of any organization that requests funds from the County.  As EMDC is in the 2021 budget to receive funds, he suggested not having a County Commissioner be a board member of EMDC, or have EMDC withdraw their request for funding.  CA Adkins said he would contact EMDC to determine options.

MOTION: Move to appoint Commissioner Wombacher to review and sign warrants with the Chair (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

The Commissioners reviewed the Storm Related Staff Reduction and Courthouse, Annex, and Airport Closure Policy.  They agreed to amend the policy to remove the provision that a consensus is reached among the Commission.  Rather, the County Administrator simply needs to consult with the Chair. 

MOTION: item C be changed to eliminate the words “and a consensus is reached” (Clark/Paradis 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: Move to approve and sign the Earned Paid Leave Amendments to the Personnel Policy described in the memo from the Deputy Administrator as presented (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: approve the extension of FFCRA Leave provisions through March 31, 2021 as proposed (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

The Department of Agriculture, Conservation, & Forestry received a zoning change petition in the Town of Osborne.  As part of the process, the Commissioners have been asked if they wish to submit comment.

MOTION: Move to check the “No comments on the proposal” box and authorize the County Administrator to sign the ZP 781 form (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Regarding Covid-19 and the risk of exposure, the Commissioners agreed that the County offices should continue to be closed to the public and that the County should encourage the use the drop box rather than appointments.  The Commissioners further agreed that it was appropriate to allow the County Administrator to amend provisions in the policy regarding the County’s Covid response without official action of the Commission, but in consultation with the Chair.

MOTION: Move to authorize the County Administrator to amend the policy concerning Covid response as he sees fit, in consultation with the chair (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

MOTION: to adjourn 11:17 a.m. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)

Respectfully submitted,

Rebekah Knowlton

Deputy County Administrator

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