COMMISSIONER AGENDAS & MINUTES
COMMISSIONERS REGULAR MEETING
Commission Chairman, Percy L. Brown Jr., called the meeting of the Hancock County Commissioners to order at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, October 6, 2015 in the conference room of the county courthouse located in Ellsworth Maine with Commissioners Blasi and Joy and County Administrator (CA) Conlogue in attendance.
Adjustments to the agenda:
MOTION: to strike item 4b, to add item 4g request a motion to approve a private hanger lease, to add the minutes from the September 29th CBW for approval and appoint a District 7 nominee to the RCC Advisory Committee. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
Kathleen Tyson of Runyon Kersteen Ouellette presented the Jail Service Fund Audit and Unorganized Territory Audit for the year ended June 30, 2015. An audio copy of the discussion is available, upon request, in the County Commissioner’s Office. There was one Journal Entry for the Unorganized Territory compared to two in the prior year. There were six Journal Entry’s for the Jail Service Fund and one “past immaterial not posted Journal Entry” compared to eight Journal Entry’s in 2014. Three of the Journal Entries were related to late health claim expenses that the County would not have known about when the audit was being conducted; these items came in during July and August for services rendered prior to June 30, 2015. In addition to significant health claim expenses in the jail, there were also Journal Entries for “booking Accounts Receivable from the State of Maine for the claims that the County has made to the State for the deficit in the Jail Services Fund for 2015. With regard to the jail financial statement, the audit report was clean.
Commissioner Blasi asked if there was any sign of an $11,000 discrepancy in the jail fund; Auditor Tyson needed more specific information in order to answer this question. Auditor Tyson stated that from 2014 to 2015 there was a dramatic shift in “cash and Due From Other Governments” cash has gone down a considerable amount and Due From Other Governments has gone up; The cash used in operations to pay the various expenditures of the Jail Services Funds, at year end is booked as a receivable from the State of Maine based on the claim of $121,157 that the County made to the State. Last year the County had the “cash in hand” this year the County is waiting on the State to pay. The Unassigned Fund Balance did not change dramatically is due to the receivable from the State being booked as a revenue; if the funds are not received the Unassigned Fund Balance of the Jail will revert to a $121,000 deficit. This is an area of risk for the jail and the County as a whole because the jail is not a standalone entity and if the funds do not materialize the deficit is going to have to be absorbed somehow through the County. Budget vs. Actual results were, for the most part, very close to what the budget was; the big ticket item was Personnel Services Benefits which were over budget for FY15, the vast majority of that is related to health benefits that are provided for employees of the jail. There were no Material Weaknesses in Internal Controls over the jail operations. Journal Entry approval was an important matter with the UT and the Jail, this was due to a change of staffing in the Treasurer’s Office and has been rectified between the Deputy Treasurer and Treasurer. Commissioner Blasi suggested a checklist or tally sheet showing that Journal Entries have been checked systematically by the Treasurer; a cover sheet on the Journal Entry or the Treasurer’s initials on the Journal Entry itself was suggested by Auditor Tyson.
Commissioner Blasi stated that he thought the Treasurer should draft the manager’s responses; Auditor Tyson stated that this was completely up to the county on how they want to handle this, typically the Manager/Administrator is the “point person” for the responses, it varies from government to government and is up to the Commissioners.
The UT Financial Statement is an Audit Report that includes the General Fund of the Unorganized Territory and TIF Fund of the Unorganized Territory, it is a clean, unmodified audit report with no significant overages against the expenditure budget other than snow removal was slightly over the budgeted amount of $71,000. The audit showed a positive change in the Fund Balance of $37,080 however there was a transfer of $150,000 from the operating budget to Reserves and significant amount of money was spent from the Road Reserve Account ($276,700).
The $150,000 was part of the budget document, therefore it was part of the amount raised in expenditures for that year. The Journal Entry involved this transfer. It could have been 2 different entries but Auditor Tyson “netted” the transactions. The prior period adjustment was from 2014, it was brought to their attention by the County prior to starting the audit, for Local Road Money from the State that was erroneously credited to the County Account instead of the UT. The adjustment credited the UT the $12,000 that was missed in 2014. This did not show up as an audit entry because it was discovered and corrected by the County prior to when the audit began.
Commissioner Blasi requested an example of fully depreciated equipment; the auditor did not have a listing of those expenses and stated that the UT Supervisor should be contacted for the list. Auditor Tyson stated that it is acceptable that the listing is not part of this audit. The term “town way” was questioned.
The inter fund loan is no different than a Due To/From, all cash is held in the General Fund of the UT, when the TIF District has a balance of unspent funds, the balance of those funds are in the General Fund cash. It is an inter fund receivable in the TIF Fund and a Payable in the General Fund. The TIF Fund balance showing in the audit is $85,651.
Auditor Tyson was very pleased with how this audit went and welcomed any internal control questions; she wished the parties well and announced her retirement effective December 31, 2015. Hank Farrah will be the new primary on the Hancock County account.
Treasurer Eldridge stated that the name of the firm was Runyon Kersteen Ouellette and stated that this was used as a signature on the audit as well, she asked if there was an actual owner that approves the audit. Auditor Tyson stated that Runyon Kersteen Ouellette is a firm name (a professional service corporation) but the firm as a whole takes responsibility for the audit even though they are performed by individuals.
Treasurer Eldridge requested clarification regarding keeping a ledger of Treasurer’s Office mail while not memorializing other department mail. Auditor Tyson stated that she will review her write-ups and reconnect with the treasurer later with an answer to her question.
Civil Process Supervisor Paul McPhail was recognized for his 20 Years of Service to the citizens of Hancock County.
MOTION: to approve the minutes of the September 1, 2015 commissioners' regular meeting and September 18th, 25th, 29th and 30th Commissioner’s Special Meetings. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
CA Conlogue presented an updated version of the Appointed/Exempt Employee Policy in which the prior Appointed/Exempt Employee Policies have been repealed and sections were consolidated; it will also be incorporated into the Personnel Policy. There were three minor revisions; highlights included the accrual of sick time at the rate of 1.846 hours per week with a maximum of 720 hours beginning January 1, 2016. Commissioner Joy stated that he was not quite ready to approve this item and requested the opinion of the Personnel Director; he wanted to know who it affects and how it affects them. Regarding vacation usage, the term “earned” was changed to “granted,” CA Conlogue stated that if vacation time is earned employees can take it after the fiscal year, if it’s granted the commissioners can control when it can be taken/used. Commissioner Joy preferred to discuss the policy at the next meeting, Commissioner Brown agreed. Commissioner Blasi was ready to pass the policy. It will be discussed at the next scheduled meeting.
CA Conlogue requested authorization to proceed with legal action against the State of Maine for unpaid obligations to the Hancock County Jail.
MOTION: to proceed against the State of Maine for unpaid obligations to the Hancock County Jail. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: Commissioner Brown stated that a Notice of Clam has already been sent to the State for $120,000, the funds are owed to the county, it is a deficit, it was promised under the old law and was not paid to us, it is ours and we want it. Commissioner Joy would like to have the shortfall in the jail discussed with legal counsel; the two issues are 1) past due funds that are obligated under the old law and 2) the new funds which were approved in the 15/16 budget that were not funded by the State. The State owes every county. Steps taken will include contact with Erik Stumpfel Esq. to begin legal action against the State in the form of a Notice of Claim.
MOTION: to appoint John E. Harris of Mariaville as the County Commissioners appointee to the Washington Hancock Community Agency Board, for a term of three years. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to move the Regular Meeting to November 6, 2015 at 8:30 a.m. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
Dave Fowler First Wind – Bull Hill TIF discussion
Commissioner Joy questioned if Hancock County is going to see the same TIF projection as was done with the Bull Hill TIF or going forward would it follow the Maine Revenue Services (MRS) decision. TIF revenues have been greatly diminished; Mr. Fowler stated that Sun Edison/First Wind was completely unaware of the MRS decision until Hancock County brought it to their attention, it is brand new to them and the first time MRS has done this on a project. The methodology of the cost is still consistent, the formula has been changed, MRS may be contemplating an income approach vs. a cost approach. Commissioner Joy stated, as First Wind was bought out was it born out that it does have a 30% lesser value because of the credits that are not transferrable to Sun Edison. Mr. Fowler stated that it is an argument that can be had; the market value is still the same with or without the credit, how we get funded is a matter of funding. The 30% discount was not seen in the purchase, it was based on market value. The sale of First Wind was above market value. It looks like the numbers have changed drastically from the Bull Hill Project to the Hancock Wind Project. Commissioner Joy stated that if this is what they are going to do from now on, we have to react on it. MRS has stated that First Wind submitted items to them but they could not share the information with us; it was a request for information from an income approach. MRS is trying to justify the 30% by using a different approach to get consistent values. Supervisor Billings stated that MRS was asked for a copy of the Property Record Card but no information was contained on the card, when asked for the spreadsheets used to determine the values on the Property Record Cards we were told it was proprietary and confidential and we could not have the information. Supervisor Billings asked First Wind/Sun Edison through Mr. Fowler to release the information so that we can see how they were arriving at their number. Mr. Fowler asked if the information would continue to stay confidential and stated that he would have to “check into that.” Commissioner Joy stated that he thought the commissioners could discuss it in executive session so it would not have to be public information. Mr. Fowler stated that the initial value proposed in the spreadsheet to Hancock County for Bull Hill was in the $69 million dollar range; as builds came in at $70 million.
Hancock Wind is under construction with completed construction in late fall of 2016. The flashing lights have not been replaced at Bull Hill as they are still waiting on FAA mitigation. In 2013 the total value was $81 million, in 2015 it is $56 million, and it dropped $24 million in three years or a reduction of 31% of total value. Mr. Fowler stated that it is the 30% discount that MRS has taken in depreciation. This lowers the Hancock County TIF agreement by 42% over the 30 year period, we will only get 42% of what was originally projected.
Mr. Fowler stated that he has heard that MRS will level out at 30% as a floor. Commissioner Blasi stated that First Wind could attempt a tax appeal per a statement by Erik Stumpfel Esq on September 25, 2015. Mr. Fowler did not present the depreciated 30% scale to Hancock County originally. In the future, this will be looked at closely. The county’s fight is with Maine Revenue Services, it was clarified that the discussion today was to ask for help and to ask Sun Edison to release the information to the county attorney in order to help us; if the commissioners can confirm that it will be kept confidential, it would help with Mr. Fowler’s request. MRS did this without any comparable sales, it can be discussed in executive session, confidentially with the county’s attorney.
Commissioner Blasi stated that, as written in the September 25, 2015 minutes, only the tax payers can pursue the tax appeal process; Commissioners Brown and Joy agreed that they (the taxpayers) would not pursue that.
MOTION: to approve September General Fund and Airport Payroll Warrants #15-35, #15-36, #15-37 and #15-38 in the aggregate of $207,675.08 . (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve September General Fund and Airport Expense Warrants #15-42 #15-43, #15-44 and #15-45 in the aggregate of $794,861.83 . (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: this included the Axtell contract payment.
MOTION: to approve September Jail and UT Fund Payroll Warrants #16-09, #16-10, #16-11 and #16-12 in the aggregate of $94,988.39. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: Commissioner Blasi asked if one of these warrants had a check being withheld for the DA, Commissioner Brown stated it was not in this warrant and has been released. Commissioner Brown stated that he does not have the authority to sign a warrant that goes over or to okay that warrant, he asked the County Administrator to speak with the District Attorney about the expenditure and it turned out to be a matter of $20 that the account would be over expended, therefore he authorized the release of the check.
MOTION to approve September Jail and UT Expense Warrants #16-10, #16-11, #16-12 and #16-13 in the aggregate of $72,022.01. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
Treasurer Eldridge presented the financial reports and an update on AR. Commissioner Blasi questioned AR 225 Atlantic Landscape, Michelle Cote is still looking into this. Commissioner Joy suggested sending another notice to MDOT for funds owed; the State doesn’t technically owe us until the FAA pay’s their portion. The project was closed out a month ago, a letter will be generated authorizing the State to pay their portion. Commissioner Joy was curious with mechanism of how the Town of Bucksport is dealing with their valuation, the impact will be approximately $100,000 spread out over every other town. Commissioner Blasi asked when the status report will show when town taxes have been used up; town taxes are based on the budget. Commissioner Blasi asked “how do we know when we’ve used them all up and Community Benefit funds need to plug the hole?” It was built into the budget to defray taxation. If the $90,000 is not expended, we won’t expend it will show up in Undesignated Funds. Commissioner Brown asked if the Treasurer was anticipating any Undesignated Funds for FY15, her answer was not that I’m aware of. Commissioner Brown stated that at the Public Hearing Commissioner Blasi referred to utilizing unexpended Community Benefit Funds (from account number 3-3025-00) for the FY16 budget. FY15 Community Benefit funds have been targeted toward the FY15 budget due to the lack of Undesignated Funds from FY14. Treasurer Eldridge stated that she will know the Undesignated Fund Balance after she meets with the County Administrator.
Commissioner Brown stated that the DA’s travel account was over expended by $20 he originally questioned purchase because it was an expenditure of over $1,000 which has to be approved by the CA. Commissioner Joy questioned if another Workers Compensation bill is due for the year; the last one was received yesterday in the amount of $14,900. The 2014 WC audit bill ($7,630) was received in 2015 which caused the Workers Comp lines to be over expended. Workers Comp is audited annually. Commissioner Joy asked if this was accounted for in the FY16 budget; the answer was no as we have not received the new numbers from WC yet, the budget will have to be adjusted in November/December. Commissioner Brown questioned the cost of copiers/printers; CA Conlogue stated that he will be working to cancel the printer contract. Copier usage is up which drives the cost of the copiers.
$1,417,344 was budgeted in the Health Account for FY15. $243,413 was budgeted as employee contributions and buyouts, the total minus employee contributions and buyouts is $1,173,931. The cost average is approximately $90,000 per month. CA Conlogue spoke with Scott McKee of Acadia Benefits regarding the Stop Loss for FY15, which should be at approximately $1.2 million. The conservative approach for FY16 would add $125,000, a more aggressive approach would add $100,000. CA Conlogue has added $75,000 and brought the FY16 health care amount to $1,523,000. The aggregate STOP Loss for FY15 is now $1,384,000. Commissioner Joy questioned theoretically why we had to fund over the Stop Loss, as we need to know what it is so we can budget to it. Commissioner Joy questioned the total for FY14, CA Conlogue stated that there is a $30,000 GAP/shortfall between the numbers. If there were any surplus it was eaten up by the deficit in the budget. Commissioners Brown and Joy requested a specified lock box/separate account for these funds.
MOTION: to approve September expenditures in the health insurance account at $9,107.46. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
The commissioners discussed the cost of the jail control panel and where it was paid from.
MOTION: to approve Capital Expenditures in the amount of $47,919 from account G11-3120-00 for the jail control panel. (Joy/Brown 2-0-1, motion passed, Blasi abstained) Discussion: Commissioner Blasi abstained from the vote because funds were spent for this purchase from accounts that were not designated for this expense.
MOTION: to approve capital expenditure in the amount of $23,195 from account G2-3010-15 for 50% of the contract price for the new airport entrance sign, INV#56022. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
Commissioner Blasi asked the following questions:
Does our Trial Balance balance as of 9/30/15? Yes
Have all County checking account statements for the prior month been reconciled, without error? No
Are the due to/from accounts in balance? Yes
Do revenue and expense accounts reconcile to the control accounts? Yes.
Commissioner Brown stated that after speaking with former Treasurer Planchart, she stated that she never said that there are missing funds (from reserve accounts); the auditor has stated that there was not any signs of any missing funds and the matter is closed.
The airport monthly report included an update from an FAA investigation closing last winter’s runway incursion event with airport maintenance personnel.
Regarding the update on the airport entrance sign; the approved sign permit from the Town Trenton was received on 9/1/15, Bangor Neon was instructed to proceed with manufacturing on 9/2, per bid specifications, 50% of the payment was issued between 9/14 and 9/18 and delivery and installation is expected by the end of October or early November.
Regarding the 2014 airport auditor letter to the FAA re: County Fees; Kathy Tyson of RKO submitted a letter to the airport manager on 9/21/15 confirming the audit procedures relative to the Administrative fee that was charged to the airport in 2014 which contained a $4 difference. The FAA NE Region Compliance Officer confirmed receipt of the auditor’s letter on 9/21. Commissioner Blasi stated that he does not agree with what “we” are assessing the airport that it should be much less as discussed in the budget workshop. Commissioner Blasi stated that the airport manager has shown the commissioners the negative impact the fee will have on the airport funds, not the taxpayers, the airport should pay as much as its able to but Commissioner Blasi stated that he believes that it is impaired, he stated that he believes that “we” are impairing the operations of the airport by doing this; he referenced minutes where the manager stated that if the commissioners keep doing this “we” are pushing it onto taxation.
Regarding fiber service at the airport: Fiber service at the airport is not operational but should be shortly.
Morris Yachts has declined the café in the terminal building. Manager Madeira is researching other options.
Commissioner Blasi requested an update on the Terminal Building warranty items; Manager Madeira stated that all the items need to be completed and he will stay on Nickerson & O’Day until all items are corrected.
MOTION: to approve the Airport General Consultant Agreement (AGCA) with Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc. dated September 15, 2015. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: AIP40 is ongoing with Hoyle Tanner.
There was a significant reduction in the Scope and Fee cost from Jacobs for the Land Lease Agreement recently worked on by the airport manager.
MOTION: to authorize the chairman to sign the approved contract with: Harold MacQuinn, Inc. in order to conduct repairs to Ramp Road. (Joy/Brown 3-0, motion passed)
Manager Madeira requested to put private hangar land Parcel “P-16” out to for random drawing selection. Currently there is not an ordered list for hanger leases. Hangers are 40’ x 44’ and will hold one single engine airplane. Hangers have to be put out to the public per FAA requirements. Article 4, Rents & Payments includes updated per square foot numbers with a starting rate of ¢.36 per square foot. Commissioner Joy preferred a refundable bidding fee/a bid to lease the hanger which would be given back to bidders who do not win the bid. Manager Madeira did not know the FAA legality associated with this suggestion. Article 4 Section B included an impact fee which covers a Scope and Impact fee with Jacobs to conduct all permitting requirements. Commissioner Brown did not agree with the 5year term and suggested that Manager Madeira run this by the county attorney. Commissioner Blasi clarified that the lessee constructs the hanger. Manager Madeira will return with a 20% down change in the document and a change in the 5 year “loan.” CA Conlogue suggested deleting the 5-year loan associated with the permit cost. Attendee Bob Bouffard stated that the airport advisory committee should be involved with the decision; the commissioners would need to make appointments to this committee in order to comply with the resolution passed in 1990. Commissioner Joy suggested sending out a proposal to the Hanger owners/stakeholders for their input and discuss the final proposed version with the county attorney.
MOTION to table the request to put Private Hangar Land Parcel “P-16” out to for Random drawing selection. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to accept the resignation of Mr. Theodore Cooke, Lead ARFF effective end of business day on 9/25/15. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: Currently we are working one person short but are okay at the moment.
Manager Madeira requested approval of a private hanger lease assignment from Mr. Robert A. Bouffard to Mr. Frederick Cahn for P8. The lease was renewed in 2007 and is a 20 year lease with a 5-year incremental increase of .02¢. The right to assign leases was questioned; Manager Madeira will research the question and return later in the day. Escalators are built into the leases.
11:54 a.m.: Break
12:26 p.m.: Back in session
MOTION: to remove administratively, Ramsey Abraham II from the employment rolls. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to approve a one year extension of the courthouse/jail snow removal contract with R.F. Jordan under the current terms of $42 per hour plowing and $50 per hour sanding. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed) Discussion: an appeal to the action was discussed.
Assistant Facilities Director, David Linnell stated that the north side of the jail has open seams and nail heads showing. He could not guarantee that it is not leaking as currently there is leakage around the vent pipes. Roof Systems has proposed to remove all lose material and seal the roof in order to get us through to next spring. The patch would cost less than $2,500, it has not been put out to bid; the district court roof is in the exact same shape but there have been no leaks so far. The warranty of the original jail roof has “lived its longevity.” Commissioner Joy would like to see the cost of the patch in both places (jail and district court roof). Recently there was a blocked drain in the district court roof causing rain to be pushed through into the building. Director Linnell will attend another meeting to provide more accurate numbers. Charleston Correctional Facility may provide roofing labor for nothing; safety rules would be followed.
County truck repairs have been made and will get them through the winter.
A small boiler could be converted to propane and we would be completely off of oil or it could be converted to a condensing gas boiler at 300,000 BTU’s. This would gain efficiency either way. It heats the hot water throughout the facility in the summer months when the boilers are shut down. Currently the circulators are shut off. Commissioner Brown suggested finding out the water load which may reduce the size of the unit, a booster is currently being used in the jail kitchen. They would likely pay for this under capital expenses this winter; the 5-year plan will be checked for this project. The cost of the conversion to purchase a condensing boiler is approximately $6,000; employees can install it, to switch the boiler over to propane would cost approximately $3,000-$4,000. Commissioner Brown was concerned with the size of the boiler.
Commissioner Blasi asked if the cost of the roof would be paid for through the budget. Commissioner Brown stated that they would have to make a decision on the reserves included in the budget. The approximate cost to fix the roof correctly is approximately $100,000 for a metal roof; he did not have a number for a shingled roof.
Manager Madeira stated that the current lease language says lessee shall not assign this agreement without previously obtaining the consent of the lesser. ……such consent shall not be unreasonably withheld. A qualified party has to meet minimum standards; this means it has to be used for aeronautical storage. Commissioner Joy requested to remove the assignment language and change it. The dirt is owned by the county but the building is owned by the lesser. The commissioners could allow the reassignment but it should be brought up to current rates; a 20% escalator was suggested. On all future leases the clause should be added and they reserve the right to modify future leases. With regard to this particular lease assignment, Manager Madeira questioned if the clause should be added to this agreement and if they “had a leg to stand on” with this particular lease. Commission Joy is OK with this assignment and Commissioner Blasi agreed.
MOTION: to approve a private hanger lease assignment from Mr. Robert A. Bouffard and Mr. Frederick Cahn for P8. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
Jail update. JA Tim Richardson had nothing to report; he is still awaiting estimates for fence repairs but the panel is up and running with no issues. Commission Blasi asked if it is true that Penobscot County is looking to board out but we cannot take any more prisoners. Commissioner Joy asked if he had heard any news in regards to the money following the prisoner. The jail is okay financially at this time according to Jail Administrator Richardson; he is looking to increase our rates for Federal inmates but questioned if we want any more at this time. We are maintaining now.
Calls for service were up in September, Civil Process changes with the seasons but is up from years past. Papers served should balance to the number served last year. Commissioner Joy questioned if this was a private enterprise at one time. The total amount of papers served was included in a distributed spreadsheet.
MOTION: to approve the hire of Brian “Buddy” Archer of Ellsworth as a full-time patrol deputy at Step12A $17.38 per hour, effective October 24, 2015. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to accept resignation of Alan Brown effective October 9, 2015. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
Shane Campbell will transfer to the position as MDEA Agent in October.
MOTION: to approve Robert Maddocks of Ellsworth as Sheriff’s Department Chaplain. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
Regarding the purchase of cruiser, Chief Deputy (CD) Kane stated that the lowest bid came from Darlings of Ellsworth and included a trade-in of a 2011 pick-up in the amount of $15,000; the difference was $17,000. CD Kane requested the purchase of a cruiser with funds coming from account 10-01-142 in the amount of $12,879.41 and $4,120.59 would come from account 10-10-200. Shane Campbell will not take a vehicle with him as he will be assigned a vehicle by Maine Drug. Commissioner Blasi questioned if we had a firm agreement with Darlings; we do and the vehicle is on the lot. Commissioner Brown questioned whether the commissioners wanted to move ahead with the purchase. Commissioner Joy stated that he understood the newer vehicle trade-in but thought this did not do anything for anyone else.
MOTION: to approve the purchase of a cruiser with funds coming from account 10-01-142 in the amount of $12,879.41 and $4,120.59 from account 10-10-200. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: to appoint Lt. David Kerns as the District 7 Chiefs nominee to the RCC Advisory Committee. (Brown/Blasi 3-0, motion passed) (This was changed later in the meeting to Lt. Kevin Edgcomb)
CA Conlogue requested commissioner approval of P. Linscott as a PHI. This would not preclude training one or two PHI’s in the future (from the treasurer’s office). Commissioner Blasi stated that he thought it would be more advantageous to appoint one from each office now. CA Conlogue would prefer to appoint one at a time for now. Treasurer Eldridge stated that it was her opinion Deputy Treasurer Atwater should be appointed to do the financial side of the work. Commissioner Blasi suggested training a financial person for the financial side of things; CA Conlogue stated that he definitely wanted the Deputy Treasurer as a PHI but for now she is at her limit work wise and for now he would like to have P. Linscott as a PHI. Commissioner Brown agreed. Commissioner Blasi requested a definite date for training for a financial person and stated that in January he expected the CA to recommend a treasurer’s office employee to be recommended as a PHI. CA Conlogue stated that it may be in January or February.
MOTION: to approve Pam Linscott as a PHI for Hancock County. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed)
Commissioner Blasi accepted his portion of the Commissioners Priorities for the County Administrator as written. Commissioner Brown has met with CA Conlogue at least once a week to go over events that have happened and identify issues; CA Conlogue shares his progress regarding priorities during those meetings.
Commissioner Blasi assigned the following priorities for the 4th quarter of 2015:
5-Year Plan – (clarified as the 5-Year Capital Account Plan) preliminary work has begun but other items have taken priority, this will be addressed when able.
Security screening for the Courthouse – a reply was not received from CA Conlogue’s reply to the Court Officer.
Airplane Excise Tax billing and collection – they will go out by the end of this month.
6-month Undesignated Fund report – Commissioner Brown stated that you would have to close the books to do this. Commissioner Joy was unsure why the monthly financial reports were not good enough for Commissioner Blasi’s request.
Commissioner Joy clarified his request to review current county services to include the idea of supplying clam wardens, dog catchers, patrol for different towns etc.; he mentioned legislative help in increasing Civil Process and Registry of Probate fees.
Commissioner Joy stated that he can no longer attend MCCA meetings through the end of the year, CA Conlogue and Commissioners Brown and Blasi volunteered. Commissioner Joy will sign a written Proxy. Commissioner Blasi agreed with Commissioner Joy regarding the role of county government but didn’t know how municipalities would yield their authority and that he thought it was a reasonable concept; Commissioner Joy preferred to ask towns what they wanted the County to take over.
The League of Towns has requested an update on County government, unfortunately their next meeting is scheduled during a BAC meeting; CA Conlogue will write up a response to the League of Towns and forward it to the commissioners for their input.
CA Conlogue stated that he has received a letter from the Army Corps of engineers regarding the Acadia Sea Farms Inc. oyster farm project; they stated that they are in agreement with the Permit Plan. The airport Certification Safety Inspector from the FAA New England Region agreed with the Army Corps of Engineers. The Department of Marine Resources has not responded. At this point the congressional delegation could not do much with this. A liability issue would only occur if something happened on the airport.
MOTION: to add a budget alternative proposal to the administrators section. (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed).
Commissioner Brown state that we are currently 7.33% over the FY15 budget and made the following recommendations:
Apply $200,000 in Community Benefit funds to budget
Leave McFarland in DA’s budget (saves $16,661)
Do not fund DA clerical position and refrain hiring of new detective until July 1st
This would bring the proposed budget to a 2.5% increase but it does not include the overlay.
$86,000 in maintenance could be taken from the Contingency account to drop us below the cap.
Commissioner Joy stated that the DA has stated that he needs a clerk, not a detective. He preferred to go to the BAC for their comments adding that a position can be eliminated in the SO and a position can be eliminated in the DA’s office and save money. Mr. McFarland is currently being supervised by the sheriff’s department. The Director of Standards and Compliance is a new position that was not in place prior to 2015. The use of the DA Detective between the SO and DA’s office was discussed. Commissioner Joy suggested proposing the plan to the individuals involved. CD Kane saw it as a compromise. CA Conlogue was instructed to speak with the parties involved in order to gain their opinions.
Commissioner Brown suggested creating a revenue and expenditure account for health insurance in order to see clearly the revenues, expenditures and balance of the account.
The Town of Trenton $20,000 check has not been shown as revenue in the capital account 3025 at this time; CA Conlogue will research this question. The $2,000 spent out of this account was for convention costs. Commissioner Joy stated that we host the MCCA Convention once in 20 years, we would not normally overspend this account. Government creep was discussed.
MOTION: to appoint Lt. Kevin Edgecomb of Mt. Desert as the District 7 Chiefs nominee to the RCC Advisory Committee. (Joy/Blasi 3-0, motion passed).
CA Conlogue will follow-up on the First Wind/Sun Edison questions from earlier in the day.
MOTION: to adjourn. (Brown/Joy 3-0, motion passed)