County Council Meeting Minutes
April 13, 2010
County Council of Dorchester County
Regular Meeting Minutes
April 13, 2010
The County Council of Dorchester County met in regular session on April 13, 2010 with the following members present: Present were Jay L. Newcomb, President; Effie M. Elzey Vice President; William V. Nichols; Ricky Travers; and Rick Price. Also present were E. Thomas Merryweather, County Attorney;
The Council adjourned from a Regular Session and convened in a closed Executive Session pursuant to State Government Article §10-508(A)(1) to discuss the appointment, employment, assignment, promotion, discipline, demotion, compensation, removal, resignation, or performance evaluation of appointees, employees, or officials over whom it has jurisdiction and pursuant to §10-508(A)(4) to consider a preliminary matter that concerns the proposal for a business or industrial organization to locate, expand, or remain in the State.
Voting in favor of the closed Executive Session were all Council members.
INVOCATION AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Councilman Travers led the invocation and the pledge of allegiance.
CALL FOR ADDITIONS OR DELETIONS TO AGENDA
The Council approved the following additions to the agenda: Veterans of Foreign Wars request for a noise variance, consideration of a Empower Energy Efficiency And Conservation Block Grant Award Increase from the Maryland Energy Administration, discussion regarding Emergency Services Director as part of the FY 2011 budget deliberation process and the removal of the storm water management legislative public hearing pending clarification due to the passage of State legislation.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES-MARCH 25, 2010 and MARCH 30, 2010
The Council approved the minutes for March 25, 2010 Budget Work Session as presented.
The Council also approved the minutes for March 30, 2010 Regular Session as presented.
APPROVAL OF DISBURSEMENTS
The Council approved vouchers as presented.
FINANICAL REPORT: CASH AND INVESTMENTS
Councilman Newcomb reported total cash and investments as $11,476,907.20.
EXECUTIVE SESSION SUMMARY
The County Council of Dorchester County convened in an Executive Session at 4:30 p.m. on April 13, 2010 in a closed session at Room 110, County Office Building, 501 Court Lane, Cambridge, Maryland, pursuant to the State Government Article §10-508(A)(1) to discuss the appointment, employment, assignment, promotion, discipline, demotion, compensation, removal, resignation, or performance evaluation of appointees, employees, or officials over whom it has jurisdiction and pursuant to §10-508(A)(4) to consider a preliminary matter that concerns the proposal for a business or industrial organization to locate, expand, or remain in the State.
Motion made, seconded and carried to conduct a closed session pursuant to the above. All members of the Council voted in the affirmative to conduct the closed session for the purposes stated above and to discuss the topics listed above.
Councilman Newcomb noted that the Council agreed to add one item to the executive session agenda.
Action taken at the closed session: 1) received information on the potential expansion of a local business requested additional information; 2) approved a request to proceed with a grant application relating to the potential expansion of a local business by a 5 to 0 vote; 3) received information from staff regarding an economic development initiative and agreed to discuss in open session; 4) deferred the request of the Public Works Director to fill a part time Airport position by a 5 to 0 vote and requested additional information; 5) confirmed the request of the Public Works Director and Human Resources Director to hire four individuals through a temporary employment agency as seasonal grass cutters for the 2010 season by a 5 to 0 vote; 6) received confirmation of the results of a telephone poll to uphold a personnel disciplinary action taken; 7) reviewed the discussion at prior budget work sessions to include an Emergency Services Director position in the
proposed FY 2011 budget – agreed to place a request to advertise in open session by a 3 to 2 vote.
The above information is being provided to the public pursuant to and in compliance with Section 10-509(b) and (c) of the State Government Article.
COMMENDATIONS-CAMBRIDGE SOUTH DORCHESTER HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR CLASS PLAY
The Council presented commendations to the participants of the Cambridge South Dorchester High School Senior Class Play entitled “Annie Get Your Gun.” Donna James and Mike James, Directors, and members of the Senior Class Play accepted the commendations.
PROCLAMATIONS-ADMINISTRATIVE PROFESSIONALS WEEK
The Council presented a proclamation declaring April 18 to April 24, 2010 as Administrative Professionals Week. Diana Travers and Ruth Bradley accepted the proclamation.
PROCLAMATION-CRIME VICTIM’S RIGHTS WEEK
The Council presented a proclamation declaring April 18 to April 25, 2010 as Crime Victim’s Rights week. Robbie Hanson, Commissioner, City of Cambridge, accepted the proclamation. He acknowledged that the following individuals were also present: Maurice Nelson, Deputy States Attorney; Christine Killmon, Field Supervisor, Parole & Probation; Dorchester County Sheriff James Phillips; Circuit Court Judge Brett Wilson
District Court Judge John Norton and Kenneth Malik, Chief, Cambridge Police Department.
The Council adjourned to Legislative Session.
A public hearing was held on BILL NO. 2010-10 AN ACT OF THE COUNTY COUNCIL OF DORCHESTER COUNTY, MARYLAND GRANTING TO INTERSTATE CORRPACK, LLC A TEN (10) YEAR COUNTY REAL PROPERTY TAX CREDIT FOR PROPERTY LEASED BY INTERSTATE CORRPACK, LLC LOCATED AT 903 WOODS ROAD, CAMBRIDGE, DORCHESTER COUNTY, MARYLAND
Mr. Merryweather explained a public hearing was being held on a proposed bill to grant to Interstate Corrpack, LLC a ten year County real property tax credit for the property leased by the business located at 903 Woods Road.
Keasha Haythe, Economic Development Director, advised that the property tax credit will assist the company in expanding its current facility in Dorchester County to incorporate the manufacturing of a new recyclable container.
Paul Zimmerman, Corporate Controller, Interstate Resources, noted that Interstate Corrpack is a subsidiary of Interstate Resources. He introduced Jim Krahn, General Manager of the Dorchester County plant. Mr. Krahn explained that the technology to manufacture a new recyclable wax alternative corrugated container was developed at the Cambridge facility. He said the new product and expansion will allow the company to compete with larger International companies.
In response to a question from Councilman Travers, Mr. Zimmerman and Mr. Krane confirmed that they are aware that the property tax credit is contingent upon the retention of 90 jobs at the facility.
The roll call on the enactment of bill no. 2010-10 was as follows: Nichols-aye; Newcomb-aye; Elzey-aye; Price-aye; Travers-aye.
Mr. Merryweather told Mr. Zimmerman and Mr. Krane that they will have to obtain a copy of the recorded bill from the Council’s Office staff and follow through with the local Assessment and Taxation office to implement the property tax credit.
Councilman Nichols said that he would like to introduce the following three items for possible legislation: 1) expand the County’s current nepotism policy to include Department Heads by adding the provision that individuals that are related, i.e., brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers or spouses, cannot be at the Department Head level in County Government at the same time; 2) require that members of the County’s Boards and Committee’s cannot vote on any issue presented by an entity that that member conducts direct business with; and 3) require that any individual elected to County Council cannot conduct business with the County under any circumstances during their term of office.
The Council adjourned to Regular Session.
PUBLIC HEARING-RESOLUTION-ENTERPRISE ZONE-TOWN OF HURLOCK
Mr. Merryweather said a public hearing was being held regarding the submission of an application to the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development to re-establish an Enterprise Zone in the Town of Hurlock. He explained that the County’s
Economic Development staff having been working with Town representatives on the application.
Ms. Haythe clarified that the acreage to be placed is the zone is 837 of which 240 is industrial, 597 is residential acreage. She noted that the residential acres will be excluded.
Ms. Haythe said that any business in an Enterprise Zone, including new and existing business, can take advantage of a real property tax credit of 80% which is then reduced over a certain time period. She noted that the Town’s Enterprise Zone designation lapsed during a change in the town’s administrative and that the town is requesting the re-instatement of that designation and including Nelson Street, on which there are commercial and industrial businesses.
There was no public comment.
The Council agreed to execute a Resolution consenting to and making application for 837 acres within the Town of Hurlock to be designated as an Enterprise Zone by the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development.
FY11 ANNUAL TRANSPORTATION PLAN-DELMARVA COMMUNITY SERVICES
Santo Grande, President of Delmarva Community Services introduced Jerome Stanley , Operations Manager and advised that they are before the Council to seek permission and approval to submit a grant to the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) for FY 2011 annual transportation plan funds.
Mr. Grande said that they are also asking for funds in the amount of $54,000 with a local match of $6,000 for a total of $60,000 to prepare a new transportation development plan for Dorchester County. He explained that although a new plan is typically prepared every five years, no plan has been developed for Dorchester County in approximately seven years. He noted that the State of Maryland is responsible for hiring an external consultant to develop the plan which is then approved by the County Council. Mr. Grande explained that the County is responsible for paying the match. He asked that the Council allow Delmarva Community Services to submit the funding request to develop the plan but noted that the Council had the final decision on whether to proceed if funding is approved.
Councilman Price said he has heard positive comments from residents about the transportation services Delmarva Community Services provides as well as concerns about empty buses. He questioned what was being down to promote transportation services.
Mr. Grande explained that, based on concerns from residents, a public hearing is being held in July 2010 regarding the current routes and possible changes. He said that during the Spring and Fall ridership increases because several seasonal businesses are at peak employment.
Councilman Newcomb questioned how many individuals utilize the company’s transportation services to travel to and from work. Mr. Grande said that out of the 200,000 individuals who rode Delmarva Community Services buses last year 90,000 were general public riders which includes those traveling to and from work and 120,000 were individuals in need of service including seniors, disabled persons and those who needed medical transportation. He expressed his opinion that ridership will increase because health reform legislation has passed.
The Council approved the request of Mr. Grande to submit the FY 2011 Annual Transportation Plan for operating funding from the Mass Transit Administration and the Federal Transit Administration for transportation services from the following programs: 1) the Statewide Specialized Transportation Assistance Program in the amount of 138,683(State and Federal) with a $46,721 local cash match for a total of $185,404; 2) Section 5311 Operating Assistance funding in the amount of $602,242 (State and Federal) in operating with a $146,114 local match for a total of $748,356; and 4) the Americans with Disabilities Act in the amount of $55,877 (State) in operating funds with a local match of $6,394 for a total of $62,271. The Council also approved Mr. Grande’s request to submit the FY11 Annual Transportation Plan for capital funding from the Mass Transit Administration and the Federal Transit Administration for transportation services in the amount of $54,900 (Federal and State) for equipment with a $6,100 local cash match for a total of $61,000 to purchase seven Motorola radios, expanded transportation software and 5 Mobil computer terminates and for facilities in the amount of $175,500 (Federal and State) for facilities with a $19,500 local cash match for a total of $195,000 for parking lot upgrades and mechanic shop expansion. The Council acknowledged that the local match may be supported, in part, by the County’s budget appropriation to Delmarva Community Services and that the company will provide any remaining match funds.
The Council further acknowledged that although Mr. Grande was submitting a request for funds in the amount of $54,000 with a local match of $6,000 for a total of $60,000 to prepare a new transportation development plan for Dorchester County, the Council had the final decision on whether to move forward with the plan as the County will be responsible for paying the local match.
LETTER OF SUPPORT REQUEST-MD HERITAGE AREAS AUTHORITY GRANT-HOOPERS ISLAND LIGHTHOUSE-U.S. LIGHTHOUSE SOCIETY
Henry Gonzalez, Vice President of the U.S. Lighthouse Society and Manager of Hoopers Island Lighthouse and the Thomas Shoal Lighthouse in Annapolis, said he was present before Council to ask for a letter of support for the Society’s application to the Maryland Heritage Area Authority for FY 2011 $21,000 for design and planning work to restore the Hoopers Island Lighthouse. He noted that U.S. Lighthouse Society will provide the match and that letters of support are needed from local representatives and State representatives. He explained that there was corrosion on the lighthouse and that he anticipates within three to four years they will sandblast the structure, conduct a structural
inspection, make repairs and recoat it. He said that Society members also intend to replace the veranda roof that covered the main deck which was removed by the Coast Guard in 1960 when the lighthouse was demanned.
Councilman Newcomb encouraged Mr. Gonzalez and the Society members to focus on Dorchester County when promoting the lighthouse. Councilman Travers asked that local businesses be utilized to provide materials and labor whenever possible during the restoration project. Mr. Gonzalez said that it is their intention to support local businesses and noted that a bank account was recently opened at the BB&T bank in Cambridge for the U.S. Lighthouse Society. He said the lighthouse will not be moved.
The Council agreed to execute letter of support for the U.S. Lighthouse Society’s application to the Maryland Heritage Area Authority for funding in the amount of $21,000 for design and planning for the restoration of the Hoopers Island Lighthouse. The Council acknowledged that the U.S. Lighthouse Society will be responsible for the management and oversight of the project and that no financial match is required or requested from the County.
NOISE VARIANCE REQUEST-QUOTA INTERNATIONAL
The Council approved the request of Pat Jones, President, Quota International, for a noise variance for the annual Derby Day Celebration being held on May 1, 2010 at the Minnette Dick Hall. The Council acknowledged that the event begins at 5:00 p.m. and will conclude at 12:00 p.m. midnight with a live band.
NOISE VARIANCE REQUEST- VETERANS OF FOREIGN WARS
The Council approved the request of Brian Sturgis, Commander, Veterans of Foreign Affairs Choptank Memorial Post 7460, for a noise variance for an outdoor event on April 24, 2010 at the VFW at 115 Sandy Hill Road. The Council acknowledged that music will be played from 6:00 p.m. until 11:00 p.m.
REQUEST FOR SIGNAGE-CHRIST ROCK PARK-RECREATION AND PARKS
The Council approved the request of Scott Eberspacher, Recreation and Parks Director, on behalf of the Recreation and Parks Board, to install signage at Christ Rock Park noting that there will be no overnight parking permitted at the site. The Council acknowledged that FY 2010 Recreation and Park budget funds will be used to purchase the signs.
TRAVEL REQUEST-EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT
A motion to approve the request of Wayne Robinson, Emergency Management Director, to allow him and Steve Garvin, Emergency Planner, to attend the Maryland Emergency
Management Association Conference in Ocean City, Maryland from June 1, 2010 until June 4, 2010 died due to lack of a second.
CRITICAL WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM GRANT APPLICATION REQUEST-ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
The Council approved the request of Ms. Haythe to prepare a grant application through the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development for funding from the Critical Workforce Development program to provide deferred payment home loan assistance to newly recruited teachers that live and teach in Dorchester County for its review and consideration before submission.
BEULAH LANDFILL CELL 5 CONSTRUCTION BID AWARD-LANDFILL-PUBLIC WORKS
The Council approved the request of Chuck Weber, Public Works Director, to award the bid for the construction of Cell 5 at the Beulah Landfill to Dixie Construction Company, the lowest bidder, at the cost of $1,408,893 from the Landfill Enterprise Fund.
2010 MARINE FACILITY PORTABLE RESTROOM CONTRACT SERVICES BID AWARD-PUBLIC WORKS
The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber to award the bid for 2010 Marine Facility Portable Restroom contract services to Harmon’s Septic Care from Cambridge at a cost of $3,485, to be funded 100% through the Department of Natural Resources Waterway Improvement Grant. The Council acknowledged that the service contract is based on a monthly fee of $47.50 per location and a $25 to $32.50 charge depending on location for any additional service call requested. The Council further acknowledged that portable toilets will be located at the Hoopersville, Elliott Island, Shorters Wharf, Ragged Point, W. Tedious Creek, Crocheron, Golden Hill, Wingate, Kirwans Wharf, Tylers Cove, Taylors Island Ramp and Madison County marine facilities. The Council recognized that a portable toilet is not being placed at Transquaking as has been done in previous years due to reoccurring vandalism.
CONTINGENCY FUNDING REQUEST-SNOW COSTS-PUBLIC WORKS
Based on a request from Mr. Weber the Council agreed to transfer $200,000 from the FY10 Contingency Fund to various Highway Division accounts to address costs related to snow events that occurred in December 2009, January 2010 and February 2010.
FY11 LETTER OF AGREEMENT-MID-SHORE MENTAL HEALTH SYSTEMS
The Council, based on a request made by Joseph Newell, Mid Shore Mental Health Systems Executive Director, agreed to designate Mid Shore Mental Health Systems, Inc. to act as the agent in oversight, planning and development of the Public Mental Health System in Dorchester County and agreed to enter into a FY 11 Letter of Agreement.
MUNICIPAL TAX COLLECTION AGREEMENT-TOWN OF HURLOCK-FINANCE
The Council approved the request of Michael Spears, Finance Director, to enter into a Municipal Tax Collection Agreement with the Town of Hurlock for the collection of the Town’s real property tax by the County’s Finance Department. The Council acknowledged that the municipal real property taxes will be added to the County’s real property tax bill. The Council acknowledged that taxes are collected for five other municipalities within the County and simplifies the tax sale process.
MAINTENANCE OF EFFORT WAIVER-BOARD OF EDUCATION
The Council confirmed its decision to seek a 2.02% Maintenance of Effort waiver for funding for the Board of Education for FY 2011 amounting to $350,786. The Council acknowledged that because there are currently several bills regarding maintenance of effort allocations in the Maryland General Assembly, a placeholder was sent to the Maryland Department of Education noting the Council’s desire to seek a waiver.
COLLABORATIVE SUPERVISION & FOCUSED ENFORCEMENT FY2011 GRANT RENEWAL-LOCAL MANAGEMENT BOARD
The Council approved the request of Nancy Shockley, Local Management Board Director, to execute the renewal agreement for the FY11 Collaborative Supervision & Focused Enforcement Grant (CSAFE) in the amount of $29,260 with no local match for the period of July 1, 2010 through June 30, 2011. The Council acknowledged that these funds will support overtime pay for additional police officers assigned to CSAFE areas.
COURT HOUSE SECURITY SYSTEMS UPGRADES-CIRCUIT COURT
The Council agreed to waive bids and approved the request of Brett Wilson, Circuit Court Judge, to contract with Reed Security in the amount of $13,998.67 to replace the existing computer workstation, upgrade card access software and install a large monitor in the first floor security command center in the Courthouse. The Council acknowledged that Transfer Tax Funds will be expended for this upgrade.
CONFIRMATION-REPAIR PAYMENT REQUEST-SANITARY COMMISSION
The Council confirmed its decision to deny the request of Robert Tieder, President, Sanitary Commission, on behalf of the Sanitary District to pay for repairs made on February 12, 2010 to a valve box in the Suburban and Spring Drive area, which they allege was damaged by a County snow plow. The Council acknowledged that Local Government Insurance Trust, the County’s insurer, has denied a claim to pay for those repairs. The Council further acknowledged that the invoice for the repairs has been
included with the snow expenses and sent to the Federal Emergency Management Agency for possible reimbursement.
TELEPHONE POLL CONFIRMATIONS
Ms. Baynard noted that in the interim between meetings the Council, by means of telephone poll, took the following actions: 1) denied the waiver of outstanding landfill finance charges for Kelly Transport & Refuse, LLC by a 5 to 0 vote and authorized
2010 MARINE FACILITY TRASH CONTAINER CONTRACT SERVICES-BID AWARD
Based on a recommendation made by Mr. Weber, the Council agreed toward the 2010 Marine Facility Trash Container contract services to Waste Management of Maryland to provide trash containers at County marine facilities for the period being May 1st to October 31st at a cost of $11,127.20. The Council acknowledged that two (2) 8-yard trash containers will be located at Hoopersville, Ragged Point, Tylers Cove, Taylors Island Boat Ramp, Madison, and Trenton Street during the same time period at a rate of $262.60 per month per site with a charge of $49 for each additional service request. The Council further acknowledged that one (1) 8-yard container is to be located at Crocheron and Elliott’s Island at a rate of $131.30 per month per site with a charge of $49 for each additional service request. The Council recognized that Waterway Improvement Grant funds will provide 100% of the cost for these contract services.
EMPOWER ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND CONSERVATION BLOCK GRANTAWARD INCREASE-MARYLAND ENERGY ADMINISTRATION
The Council accepted an increase in the amount of $16,692.00 to the EmPOWER Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant for a grand total of $199,692. The Council recognized that the original grant award of $183,000 was accepted at the Council’s March 6, 2010 meeting.
EMERGENCY SERVICES DIRECTOR
The Council agreed to advertise for an Emergency Services Director to oversee the Emergency Management, Emergency Medical Services and 911 Departments with a start date of July 1, 2010 contingent upon there being funding in the FY 2011 budget for the position. Councilmen Price and Nichols opposed.
Councilman Mike Nordstrom, Town of Hurlock, on behalf of Mayor Joyce Spratt and the Town Council, thanked the Council for its support for the Town’s application for Enterprise Zone designation and expressed appreciation for the assistance Ms. Haythe provided them in preparing the application.
At the request of Councilman Price, he noted that an individual recently provided the Town of Hurlock with a presentation on a proposal to build a horseshoe complex including a restaurant, lounge and day care center in the Town.
In response to a question from Wendell Foxwell, a Dorchester County resident, Councilman Newcomb advised that a second request was submitted on behalf of the County for federal funding to pay for costs associated with snow removal in December. He said that the first request was denied.
Based on a question from Mr. Foxwell, Councilman Newcomb said that there is a payment plan to pay real property taxes which includes interest charges.
After a motion made by Councilman Price to install signs on the Green Point Road property prohibiting parking in the access lane and overnight parking failed, the Council agreed to refer the request to the Traffic Safety Committee.
Councilman Newcomb advised that a response had been received from the State Highway Administration regarding the flooding issues on Route 335. He said that according to the SHA representative there are no funds available to raise that roadway and that the project will be placed on a waiting list.
Councilman Newcomb noted that the Council will meet on April 20, 2010 to introduce the budget only with the next regular County Council meeting scheduled for April 27, 2010.
Based on recommendations from Councilman Newcomb, the Council made the following appointments to the Sanitary Commission: Leonard Greenhawk to fill the unexpired term of Stephanie Tolley, which expires December 31, 2014 and Don Heintzelman as the sixth Commission member , and Don as the sixth member, pursuant to State legislation that
will become effective June 1, 2010. The Council acknowledged that Mr. Heintzelman can attend meeting for observation only and cannot vote until June 1, 2010.
With no further business to discuss, the Council adjourned.
ATTEST: DORCHESTER COUNTY COUNCIL:
Jane Baynard, County Manager Jay L. Newcomb, President
Effie M. Elzey, Vice President
William V. Nichols