County Council Meeting Minutes
December 19, 2006
County Council of
Regular Meeting Minutes
December 19, 2006
The County Council of Dorchester County met in regular session on December 19, 2006 with the following members present: Present were William V. Nichols, President; Jay Newcomb, Vice President; Effie M. Elzey; Ricky Travers; Rick Price. Also present were E. Thomas Merryweather,
The Council adjourned from a Regular Session and convened in a closed Executive
Session pursuant to §10-508(A)(1) to discuss employment issues; pursuant to §10-508(A)(4) to consider a matter that concerns the proposal for a business or industrial organization to locate, expand, or remain in the State; and pursuant to §10-508(A)(7) to obtain legal advice.
Voting in favor of the closed Executive Session were all Council members.
INVOCATION AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Councilman Nichols led the invocation and Councilman Price led the pledge of allegiance.
CALL FOR ADDITIONS OR DELETIONS TO AGENDA
The Council approved the following additions to the Regular Session Agenda: Replacement Vehicle-Sheriff’s Office, Request to Advertise-Environmental Planner-Planning and Zoning, and Request to Advertise Vacancy-Council’s Office. The Council also announced that Brad Broadwell, Economic Development Director, would be giving a report on the closing of Icelandic.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES-December 12, 2006
The Council approved the minutes for December 12, 2006 as presented.
APPROVAL OF DISBURSEMENTS
The Council approved vouchers as presented with Councilman Travers abstaining for Simmons Center Market and Councilman Newcomb abstaining for Old Saltys Restaurant.
FINANICAL REPORT: CASH AND INVESTMENTS
Councilman Nichols reported total cash and investments as $12,179,642.41.
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT UPDATE-ICELANDIC
Brad Broadwell, Economic Development Director, made a statement concerning the closing of Icelandic. A copy of that statement is attached.
Councilwoman Elzey expressed her appreciation to Mr. Broadwell and Jane Baynard,
COMMENDATION-POP WARNER CHEERLEADERS
The Council presented commendations to the following members of three Pop Warner Cheerleading teams:
Pee Wee Cheerleaders
Ashley Simmons, Katelyn Robinson, Gabrielle Travers, Nellie Travers,Victoria Brohawn,Melissa Atkinson, Serenlty Molisani,Carlie Marshall,Danielle Bennett,Taylor Short,Caraline Shellabarger, Ashlea Burall, Aliza Coffman, Calyn Shellabarger, Gabrielle Estrella, Ellie Marshall, Brooke Davidson, Coree Young, Tiffany Anderson, Cierra Robinson, Brooke Webster. The Coaches for the Pee Wee Cheerleaders were: Kathy Yorton, Ann Atkinson, Donna Travers, Whitney Vanschaik, Debbie Marshal, Jade Kenny.
Junior Pee Wee Cheerleaders
Brianna Dorsey, Aubree Hodde, Sophia Felty, Amy Cannon, Keri Olivero, Josie Shenton, Brianna Gray, Jackilynn Bowers, Katelyn Hernandez, Julia Jester, Danielle Castle, Kaylee Dorsey, Alyssa Warfield, Tori Henry, Allison Shenton, Taylor Marshall,Taylor Creighton, Amanda Tilghman. The Coaches for the Junior Pee Wee Cheerleaders were: Marcia Pliescott, Lisa Tilghman, Christy Creighton, Michelle Dorse, Karen Bowers, Lauren Shockley, Kim Castle and Wylie Gray.
Samantha Lord, Nada Nhung Tran, Shayla Woods, Courtney Whirley, Ekira Taylor,
Chachè Linthicum, Caitlin Lee, Courtney Bennett, Taylor Swafford, Katie Malkus, Colby Plummer, Abbi Lord, Destiny Hudak, Brianna Todd, Courtney Harris, Haylee Tyler,
Mr. Moulds stated that the Hoopers Island Light Station was a Caisson style light house, one of only three constructed by the
Mr. Moulds stated that the light house uses its mass and weight to anchor onto the bottom of Chesapeake Bay and that a frame was built with timbers in the bottom, the mud mined out and the interior filled with concrete which means that the light house will not be able to be moved.
Ms. Chabot advised the Council that pictures of the Sharps Island Light Station were reviewed and that Ms. Baynard advised her that it would prove to be too costly to salvage the light station due to is detoriated condition. She told the Council about some features of the Hoopers Island Light Station including cast iron casting on the outside of the structure, a fog horn, solar panels and living quarters. Ms. Chabot stated that the lantern glass was in good condition. She said that she and Mr. Moulds conversed on the inspection trip with representatives from the U.S. Lighthouse Society who were impressed with the condition of the light house.
Ms. Chabot stated that the Federal government has specific goals that need to be met in order for an entity to purchase the light house including preservation and making the light house available to the general public for education, recreation, cultural and historic preservation purposes.
Ms. Moulds stated that the representatives of the U.S. Lighthouse Society expressed an interest in submitting a proposal in partnership with the County. He explained that the U.S. Lighthouse Society was a non profit historical and educational organization. Mr. Moulds stated that the local chapter of the national U.S. Lighthouse Society organization was the Chesapeake Chapter which focuses on the lighthouses and light ships of
Mr. Moulds stated that several factors were discussed concerning the joint submittal of a proposal to purchase the property of
Mr. Moulds stated that the U.S. Lighthouse Society was involved with the operation of the Thomas Point Lighthouse and had indicated that based on their experience with the last light house as well as others that the operating costs would be between $20,000 to $25,000 and that a split would be discussed between the County and the Society.
Mr. Moulds stated that the Society would provide electronic security for the light house, would be responsible for restoration of the light house and would provide its available restoration resources and expertise.
Ms. Chabot stated that she and Mr. Moulds were asking for direction from the Council as to whether they should pursue the ownership of the lighthouse by the County or discuss a partnership arrangement with the U.S. Lighthouse Society. She stated that the following must be completed in order to pursue ownership: 1) a resolution must be passed by the Council; 2) a statement must be prepared identifying the property requested and the fact that the light house will be used for education, recreation or cultural uses and/or historic preservation; 3) designation of an authorized representative; and 4) assurance that administrative expenses concerning the transfer of the property would be paid for by the County.
In response to a question from Councilman Newcomb as to the cost of repairing the light house so that it could be viewed by the general public, Mr. Moulds stated that there would be initial concerns with stabilizing the structure, closing the interior including broken windows, assessing the environmental potential for lead paint and the possible clean up of the lead. He said that the cost of the restoration of the light house would be based on how many volunteers and donations are received and that grant funding would also be pursued for the restoration.
Ms. Chabot stated that if a partnership was created between the County and the Society, the Society would oversee the restoration. In response to a question from Councilman Newcomb, Ms. Chabot stated that the Society would like a contribution of $25,000 each year from the County.
In response to a question from Councilman Travers concerning whether the light house is structurally sound, Mr. Moulds stated that the conditions of the light house is surprisingly good; that there are corrosion issues with the cast iron but that very little wood ha been degraded. He said that there would also need to be some ceiling work and the structure would need to pressure watched. He stated that the initial challenge would be stabilizing the light house before restoration would begin.
Based on a question from Councilman Newcomb concerning an underwater inspection, Mr. Moulds stated that an underwater inspection would be one of the tools in establishing a baseline of the condition of the light house. He said that the Society was impressed with the overall condition of the light house.
Ms. Chabot stated that based on the unique features of the light house her recommendation for the Council’s consideration is to pursue ownership if a partnership can be developed with U.S. Lighthouse Society which has the resources and opportunity to raise funds for the restoration of the light house. She said that the Heritage program can work with the Society as well to obtain grants.
In response to a question from Councilman Travers regarding overnight stays in the light house, Mr. Moulds stated that once the light house is stored overnight stays could be instituted.
In response to a question from Councilwoman Elzey as to handicap regulation compliance, Mr. Moulds stated that due to the fact that the light house is a historical structure the handicap accessibility requirements would be waived.
Ms. Chabot advised the Council that the Federal Government would like to see interpretation of the light house on land. She stated that interpretation could be placed at the Visitor’s Center or
Ms. Chabot stated that the next step would be to negotiate with the U.S. Lighthouse Society to determine if a partnership could be established and to then come before Council with the details for the Council’s consideration.
Mr. Moulds stated that the Society and the County are the only two organizations to express an interest in the Hoopers Island Light Station and that Holley Craighead, Grant Writer for
In response to a question from Councilman Newcomb as to a partnership with the Coast Guard, Mr. Moulds stated that one of the conditions would have to be that the Coast Guard will have opportunity to maintain the light house as an navigational aide and to maintain the light and fog horn but not the structure.
In response to a question from Councilwoman Elzey as to what step was taken by the last sitting Council in reference to the Hoopers Island Light Station, Ms. Baynard stated that the Council approved the submission of an expression of interest.
In reference to a question from Ms. Baynard as to whether or not the Society would be willing to initiate discussions after being informed that the County would like physical ownership of the property, Ms. Chabot stated that they were aware of that provision and were still willing to discuss a partnership.
The Council agreed to move forward with the process and allow Ms. Chabot and Mr. Moulds the opportunity to meet with the U.S. Lighthouse Society in reference to a possible partnership in the purchase, preservation and use of the Hoopers Island Light Station. Councilwoman Elzey suggested that the Light Station purchase could be in the memory of Thomas Flowers as he would have been in favor of the purchase.
BOARD APPOINTMENTS: LIQUOR BOARD, BUILDING CODE OF APPEALS, ELECTRICAL EXAMINER, RECREATION AND PARKS BOARD
Ms. Baynard reminded the Council Members that Liquor Board Appointments had not been made for District 1, District 3 or District 4; that the Liquor Board was meeting on December 20, 2006 and that if they did have a quorum of three members they would not be able to meet.
Councilman Travers reappointed Rudy Aaron as the District 3 representative. Councilman Price appointed Shirley Satterfield as the District 4 representative. Councilman Newcomb stated he was still considering an appointment. The Council agreed to the appointments of Rudy Aaron and Shirley Satterfield with Councilman Nichols and Councilman Newcomb abstaining. The Council acknowledged that the appointments will expire in November 2010.
Building Code of Appeals
Ms. Baynard stated that appointments have to made to the Building Code of Appeals Board. She advised that there are currently five members and that the list created by Council for potential members included Bob Powell as building contractor, Tracey Wright as electrician, Steve Marshall as plumber, Timothy Saunders as building contractor.
The Council deferred the appointment of members to the Building Code of Appeals until its January 2, 2007 meeting.
The Council appointed Edward Bradford as an electrician representative to the Electrical Examiner Board as a replacement for Denny Todd, who has already served the maximum of two terms on the Board. The Council acknowledged that Mr. Bradford’s term will expire on December 31, 2009.
Recreation and Parks
At the request of Scott Eberspacher, Recreation and Parks Director, the Council reappointed Lindsay Agee and Michael Mowbray to the Recreation and Parks Board. The Council acknowledged that Mr. Agee’s and Mr. Mowbray’s terms will expire on December 31, 2010.
PROPOSAL FOR COMPUTER LEASING PROGRAM
Don Keyes, Information Technology Director, advised the Council that he proposed entering into a three year Computer Leasing Program with Dell Corporation for new computer equipment to ensure up to date equipment was made available to County government and to allow the County to trade in used equipment as leased property rather than disposing of outdated equipment. He stated that equipment would be replaced every three years and there would be no disposal of the machines required. He advised the Council that if a newer, faster and more effective computer is developed Dell Corporation would switch out the old computer for the newer model at no cost. He said that the lease will remove risk of ownership liability from the County as well as eliminate disposal costs.
In response to a question from Councilwoman Elzey as to whether the recycling figures would substantially decrease if the leasing option was approved, Mr. Moulds stated that there the recycling of computers is a very small percentage of the recycling numbers and that there would be no significant decrease.
Mr. Keyes stated that the computers would allow for a standarization of equipment, would be able to run the same software and that the monitors would be flat screens to optimize space. He said that the County owned 150 workstations, not including laptops. Mr. Keyes stated that the Dell Corporation quoted a price of $858.58 a machine and that based on an analysis of prices the same machine with the same specifications would cost $1800 for other vendors.
In response to a question from Councilman Travers, Mr. Keyes stated that the $858 per computer would be a one time cost for that machine and that if within a three year period the computer failed there parts would be replaced or the entire computer would be replaced at no cost.
In response to a question from Ms. Baynard, Mr. Keyes stated that that the cost of the $858 per machine would be spread out over three years and that he would use money designated for upgrades from the existing Informational and Technology budget for the first year’s lease. He said that in the subsequent two years he would put the cost in his Capital and Operating Budgets.
In response to a question from Councilman Travers as to the average life of a computer, Mr. Keyes stated that life span of a computer based on national statistics was five years but that at problems started developing after three years.
In response to a question from Councilman Travers as to the participation of other counties in a computer leasing program, Mr. Keyes stated that leasing programs are becoming a normal part of business.
In response to Councilman Travers concern that the computers would not be compatible to the 911 computers, Mr. Keyes said that they would be compatible and that desktop computers would be included in the lease and upgraded as necessary, but that the servers in the 911 Services Department were not included as they must be considered separate from the lease as well as the County’s network servers. He advised the Council that he went to all of the County departments and inventoried what computers they had and what hardware they would potentially need in the future.
In response to questions from Councilman Travers concerning an increase in the lease amount and what would happen at the end of the leasing period, Mr. Keyes stated that the lease amount will not increase during the three year leasing period and that at the end of the year the County will have the option of renewing the lease in an amount to be negotiated based on the needs of the County at that time or paying a final fourth payment to own the machines.
In response to a question from Councilwoman Elzey, Mr. Keyes stated that he discussed the leasing program proposal with the Board of Education.
Ms. Baynard reminded the Council that since the lease would be a Capital lease a bill or other documentation would have to be drafted and public hearings will be held to authorize the Council to enter into the Capital Lease. She advised that there would be a 60 day enactment period and that Mr. Keyes was aware that the Computer Leasing Program would not be implemented until Spring at the earliest.
Mr. Keyes advised the Council that the proposal he received was good for thirty days but he was assured that if they received a letter of intent they would lock in the prices.
Council agreed to pursue a bill or other documentation to enter into a three year capital lease with Dell Corporation for a Computer Leasing Program to lease 125 workstations and five laptops at the cost per year of $40,167.53 for a total cost of $120,502.68 over a three year period. The Council acknowledged that funds in the FY07 Information and Technology Capital Budget designated for upgrades will be used to pay the first year’s lease payment. The Council also acknowledged that the next step would be the drafting of appropriate documentation, holding necessary public hearings in order for the Council to enter into this Capital Lease and a minimum of sixty days before the lease could be entered into.
REQUEST FOR SUPPLEMENTAL FUNDING-TOURISM
The Council approved the request of Ms. Chabot for supplemental funding in the amount of $6,000 from the FY 07 Contingency Fund for postage for the Tourism Department once all budgeted funds in that line item have been expended.
BID AWARD-FENCING AT CHRIST ROCK PARK-RECREATION AND PARKS
The Council approved the request of Mr. Eberspacher and awarded the bid for installation of fencing at the
BAY ORGANICS AMENDMENT-COMPOST SITE OPERATION-LANDFILL
The Council agreed to an extension of the agreement between the County and Bay Organics until June 30, 2007 to allow time for the Company to dispose of the product from the compost site at the Landfill. The Council acknowledged that the Maryland Department of Environment has agreed to the extension of the agreement.
BID PROPOSALS-AUDIO UPGRADES
Council approved a request to purchase a new audio system for the Orphan’s Court at the cost of $5,033 to be paid from the Transfer Tax Fund. The Council deferred the request to purchase a new audio system for the Council’s Meeting Room until the FY08 budget deliberations.
The Council confirmed the 2007 Maryland General Assembly Legislative proposed bills prepared by Delegate Adeline Eckardt amending the Liquor Laws of Dorchester County was correct and requested that a copy of the proposed bills be submitted to the Liquor Board for their consideration.
REPLACEMENT VEHICLE-SHERIFF’S OFFICE
Council approved the request of Sheriff James Phillips to purchase a new vehicle in the amount of $36,395 to replace the Deputy Sheriff’s vehicle that was totaled on November 19, 2006. The Council acknowledged that Local Government Insurance Trust declared the vehicle a total loss and will provide to the County $5,800 with the remaining balance of $30,595, to be paid from the FY07 Contingency Fund. The Council agreed that this will be a replacement vehicle against any replacement vehicles allowed in the Fiscal Year 2008 budget.
REQUEST TO ADVERTISE-ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNER-PLANNING AND ZONING
The Council agreed to the request of Steve Dodd, Planning and Zoning Director, to advertise the vacant Environmental Planner position in the Planning and Zoning Office due to the resignation of Wanda Cole at a Grade 14, Step A with an annual salary of $34,396.
REQUEST TO ADVERTISE VACANCY-COUNCIL’S OFFICE
The Council agreed to the request of Ms. Baynard to advertise for the vacant Executive Administrative Secretary position in the Council’s Office.
Bruce Coulson wished everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Councilwoman Elzey wished everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Councilman Price commended the participants and organizers of the Hurlock Christmas Parade and stated that he believed it was a success. He wished everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Councilman Nichols requested a list from each Council member by December 20, 2006 of items to bring to the attention of tomorrow to take to Governor Elect Martin O’Malley
With no further business to discuss, the Council adjourned.
Jay Newcomb, Vice President
Effie M. Elzey