County Council Meeting Minutes
July 6, 2010
County Council of
Regular Meeting Minutes
July 6, 2010
The County Council of Dorchester County met in regular session on July 6, 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,
The Council adjourned from a Regular Session and convened in a closed Executive Session pursuant to the State Government Article pursuant to 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; pursuant to §10-508(A)(7) to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter; 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 Price led the invocation and the pledge of allegiance.
CALL FOR ADDITIONS OR DELETIONS TO AGENDA
The Council approved the addition of a Local Management Board earned reinvestment funds recommendation.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES- JUNE 22, 2010
The Council approved the minutes of June 22, 2010.
APPROVAL OF DISBURSEMENTS
The Council approved vouchers as presented with Councilman Travers abstaining for payments made to Simmons Center Market.
FINANICAL REPORT: CASH AND INVESTMENTS
Councilman Newcomb reported total cash and investments as $2,148,180.61.
EXECUTIVE SESSION SUMMARY
The County Council of Dorchester County convened in an Executive Session at 4:30 p.m. on July 6, 2010 in a closed session at Room 110, County Office Building, 501 Court Lane, Cambridge, Maryland, pursuant to the State Government Article pursuant to 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; pursuant to §10-508(A)(7) to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter; 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 after its June 22, 2010 Regular Session meeting, the Council re-adjourned into Executive Session to discuss the following personnel item: Continued review of
Councilman Newcomb said the County Council of Dorchester County convened in an Executive Session at 4:30 p.m. on July 6, 2010 to discuss the following items: 1) discussed a request for reinstatement by a former County employee-acknowledged there are no vacant positions and agreed that the individual can apply for future vacancies as long as he meets the requirements of the position being applied for by a 4 to 0 vote; 2) received clarification from Human Resources and Finance staff regarding County pay policy-took no action; 3) approved a request from the Economic Development Director to hire an individual to fill a vacant Administrative Associate position by a 4 to 1 vote; 4)discussed with staff a request for clarification regarding special events; 5) deferred discussion regarding a proposal for a volunteer and rider observer policy for Emergency Medical Services; 6) approved requests from County EMS employees regarding a compensation concern by a 4 to 0 vote and agreed to an issue regarding a probationary EMS employee who has obtained paramedic certification by a 4 to 0 vote; 7) approved a request to hire specific individuals as on-call Emergency Medical Technicians-Basic Life Support, Emergency Medical Technicians I and Emergency Medical Technicians-Paramedic; 8) discussed a personnel item relating to EMS – took no action; 9) discussed the submission of a grant application from the Economic Development Administration for a local business- requested additional information; 10) deferred a discussion with legal counsel a complaint regarding private property maintenance; 11) discussed a Economic Development request from a local business, took no action.
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 – RELAY FOR LIFE ORGANIZERS - GAIL SKINNER, CANDACE CHRISTOPHER, HOLLY GILPIN, JOANN NABB, CHERYL MACLAUGHIN
The Council presented a commendation to Gail Skinner for her many years of organizing and participating in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life Event. Ms. Skinner accepted the commendation.
The Council presented a commendation to Candace Christopher and Holly Gilpin for their collaborative efforts in organizing Dorchester County’s 2010 Relay for Life event. Ms. Christopher and Ms. Gilpin accepted the commendations.
The Council presented commendations to Joann Nabb and Cheryl MacLaughlin for organizing the first American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life event in Dorchester County. Ms. Nabb and Ms. MacLaughlin accepted the commendations.
COMMENDATION- RETIREMENT – GENE SKINNER
The Council presented a commendation congratulating Gene Skinner on his retirement and recognizing his 35 years of dedicated service to Dorchester County. Mr. Skinner accepted the commendation.
COMMENDATION - ORGANIZATIONAL EXCELLENCE – WESLEY CHAPEL
The Council presented a commendation to the Reverend and congregation of Wesley Chapel Church for receiving the 2010 award for Organizational Excellence from the Heart of Chesapeake Country Heritage area for its ongoing restoration efforts of the historic Wesley Chapel. Reverend George Ames, George Ames, Jr., Mr. Lee accepted the commendation.
MUTUAL AID AGREEMENT – BLACKWATER WILDLIFE REFUGE – SUZANNE BAIRD
Jane Baynard, County Manager, introduced Suzanne Baird, Refuge Manager, Blackwater Wildlife Refuge, and advised that Ms. Baird has provided a Mutual Aid Agreement for Council’s consideration. She explained that in the past County and Refuge staff has partnered together during emergency events and that the agreement may be initiated in the future in order to formalize resource sharing.
Ms. Baird stated that historically in order for Refuge staff to be able to respond to local emergencies the President of the United States had to declare an event a national disaster. She said that the mutual aid agreement, which was reviewed and approved by the Federal Solicitor’s Office, eliminates that restriction. Ms. Baird noted that, pursuant to the agreement, a written request will have to be submitted to the Refuge before staff can respond to an emergency. She explained that the agreement also contains a provision for reimbursement. She said that historically no request for financial reimbursement has been made nor did she foresee there will be a request in the future for reimbursement, unless an extended response is required.
In response to a question from Councilman Newcomb, E. Thomas Merryweather, County Attorney, said that he was concerned about the inclusion of the reimbursement provision in the agreement, particularly in light of current budget constraints. Ms. Baird noted that the agreement does not require reimbursement but instead reserves the right to request payment for either party. She reiterated that she does not anticipate there will be future requests for reimbursement for responses to emergency events.
The Council agreed to enter into a Mutual Aid Agreement between the U. S. Department of the Interior Fish and Wildlife Service, Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge and the County for providing mutual aid and assistance in emergency situations.
Ms. Baird introduced Ray Paterer, the new Visitor Services Director who replaced Maggie Briggs who retired in January 2010. She said that recently Art Cantebury was hired as Fire Management Officer and Matt Whitlock was hired as the new Supervisor Wildlife Biologist for the Refuge.
The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber to enter into a contract #2 with URS Corporation to provide Construction Phase Services during the utility and infrastructure improvements in the Dorchester County Technology Park for a not-to exceed fee for services of $115,900. The Council acknowledged that funds for the cost for services are included in the approved Technology Park budget dated June 8, 2010 as part of the estimated $175,594 for inspection costs for contract #2 construction. The Council further acknowledged that URS Corporation will provide the following pursuant to this contract: project management, periodic inspection by office support staff, construction administration including shop drawing review and bi-weekly progress meetings, record drawings, schedule analysis, project closeout and management of grant responsibilities.
FY 2012 WATERWAY IMPROVEMENT GRANT APPLICATION – PUBLIC WORKS
The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber to submit grant applications for FY 2012 for the following five projects to the Department of Natural Resources under the Waterway Improvement Fund Program: 1) Countywide Maintenance in the amount of $99,000 for general maintenance repairs at County marine facilities; 2) Taylor’s Island Boat Ramp Repair Project in the amount of $60,000 for replacement of the ramp; 3) Elliott Island Jetty Replacement and Dredging Marina Repair in the amount of $99,000 for replacement and improvement of the jetties and boat basin; 4) Elliott Island Marina Dredging in the amount of $460,000 for dredging to improve water depth in the marina and moorings; and 5) Lodgecliffe Canal Dredging, Jetty Extension and Horn’s Point Demonstration Site for Beneficial Reuse of Dredge Material Project in the amount of $1,216,600 for re-submittal for funding for the Lodgecliffe Canal Project.
The Council also approved Mr. Weber’s request to submit a grant application for a Service Contract Grant with the Maryland Department of the Environment for trash removal and portable toilet services for FY11 in the maximum amount of $25,000.
CULVERT PIPE BID AWARD – PUBLIC WORKS
The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber to award a bid for supplying and delivering Aluminized Type 2 Metal Pipe and HDPE Plastic Pipe to Lane Enterprises, the lowest bidder. The Council acknowledged that funding will come from the FY11 Highway Division budget.
REQUEST TO ADVERTISE FOR GASOLINE, DIESEL FUEL AND HEATING OIL BIDS – PUBLIC WORKS
The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber to advertise for bids for supplying gasoline, diesel fuel and heating oil to the Department of Public Works, Highway Division, the
REQUEST FOR PAVING – HOOPERS ISLAND VOLUNTEER FIRE COMPANY – PUBLIC WORKS
Mr. Weber presented a request on behalf of Marcus Flowers, Hoopers Island Volunteer Fire Company, for County Highway Division staff to pave sections in front of and alongside the Fire Department. He advised that they have offered to pay for the blacktop. The Council requested that a formal written request detailing the work to be performed and payment be submitted by the Fire Department for its review and consideration.
CLEAN AND LIEN CONTRACT RENEWAL REQUEST – PLANNING & ZONING
The Council agreed to waive bids and approved the request of Rodney Banks, Assistant Planning and Zoning Director, to extend a contract with J. Neal Transport and Excavation, Inc. to conduct property clean-up under the Clean and Lien Program for one year, commencing July 2, 2010 and ending July 2, 2011.
LETTER OF SUPPORT – COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT HOUSING ORGANIZATION – DELMARVA COMMUNITY SERVICES
Based on a request from Santo Grande, President, Delmarva Community Services, the Council agreed to execute a letter of support for the organization’s application to the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development for certification as a Community Housing Development Organization.
Mr. Grande introduced Andy Hollis who was recently hired as Assistant Chief Operating Officer for Delmarva Community Services.
COMMUNITY ACTION AGENCY BOARD APPOINTMENTS – DELMARVA COMMUNITY SERVICES
The Council approved the recommendation of Mr. Grande and agreed to appoint Joseph Coyne and Martin Mullaney as representatives for the southern portion of the County to the Delmarva Community Services Community Action Agency Board, which was recently established. The Council also confirmed the appointment of William Batson, Robert Batson and Gloria Henry as representatives for the northern end of the County for the Board.
CERTIFICATION OF LOCAL BALLOT QUESTIONS – ELECTIONS
The Council members recognized that August 16, 2010 is the deadline for the County Attorney to certify ballot questions for the 2010 Gubernatorial Election and agreed that at the present time they have no ballot questions to pose.
GRANT APPLICATION REQUEST - GOCCP OVER-TIME FOR EX PARTE ORDER ENTRY – SHERIFF’S OFFICE
The Council approved the submission of a grant application by the Sheriff’s Office to the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention for a project entitled “Overtime for Ex Parte Order Entry” in the amount of $1,278 with no cash match for the grant period of July 1, 2010 through June 30, 2011. The Council acknowledged that these funds will support the Court’s mandate of entering protective orders by providing funds for overtime support of this program.
GRANT ACCEPTANCE – GOCCP BODY ARMOR REPLACEMENT – SHERIFF’S OFFICE
The Council accepted a grant award from the Governor's Office of Crime Control and Prevention entitled “Body Armor Replacement”, which funds were applied for by the Sheriff’s Office, in the amount of $9,619 with a cash match of $9,619 for the purchase of four tactical vests and 17 sets of body armor. The Council acknowledged that the cash match will be provided from a Federal Grant and the grant period is from July 1, 2010 through June 30, 2011. The Council acknowledged that no County funding is required.
GRANT ACCEPTANCE – GOCCP HOPE COMMUNITY PROJECT – LOCAL MANAGEMENT BOARD
The Council approved the request of Nancy Shockley, Local Management Board Director, and accepted a grant award in the amount of $29,260 from the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention under the Collaborative Supervision & Focused Enforcement Initiative entitled “Hope Community Project” with no cash match for the grant period of July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011. The Council acknowledged that the funds will be used to fund overtime support for the project which entails foot and bicycle patrols to reduce crime in designated areas in the County.
WORKER’S COMPENSATION REQUEST –
Samuel Horseman, a member of the Dorchester County Volunteer Firemen’s Association, read a letter from Ronnie Reynolds, President, which she submitted on behalf of the VFA members asking Council to reconsider its decision to change the insurance broker from ISG to Mullaney Insurance for the VFA’s Workers’ Compensation policy. He noted that it is the members’ understanding that the change will not result in a cost savings.
Mr. Horseman expressed his opinion that the current insurance agent is performing her duties satisfactorily.
Councilman Nichols noted that the Council has received correspondence from the Injured Workers Insurance Fund (IWIF), the policy carrier, that the policy had been terminated in the prior fiscal year due to non payment. He noted that the County Council, which is responsible for payment of the policy, did not receive invoices in order to avoid the termination. He expressed concern about that termination and that the fact that during the lapse of coverage an individual may have suffered an injury and not been covered by Workers Compensation. Becky Dennis, Human Resources Director, said that there were no injuries reported during the lapse in coverage and expressed her opinion that the policy could have been immediately reinstated if there had been injuries reported.
Keith Adkins, Vice President of VFA, said he was not aware that the coverage had lapsed and requested a copy of the correspondence referenced by Councilman Nichols. He said that it was his understanding that additional funds were required due to the adjustment of the membership covered.
Mr. Horseman advised that they have changed the policy to coincide with the County’s current fiscal year (July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011). He noted that VFA members asked Council to pay an additional $15,000 in Workers Compensation insurance costs in FY 2010. Councilman Newcomb explained that after the FY 2011 budget was adopted the Council agreed to pay the additional monies from that fiscal years’ contingency fund.
Calvin Stack, a VFA member, said that he was President of the Association in 2009 and that John Stichberry of the Hurlock Volunteer Fire Department had been in charge of the Association’s financial records during the same year. He said that when they turned the accounts over to the new President in September 1, 2009, the books were balanced and there was no payment due for Workers Compensation policy. Mr. Stack explained that he is in charge of reporting injuries for the Rescue Fire Company and has, in the past, had to call the current ISG agent at 2 a.m. to report a claim and obtain a claim number to provide to the hospital that was treating an injured member. Ms. Dennis noted that IWIF has an 800 number that can be accessed 24 hours a day to report a claim and obtain a claim number. She explained that an individual has 72 hours to report a claim.
The Council confirmed its prior decision that the Council, as the funding source, will assume the billing and claims management in order to manage costs due to budget constraints. The Council acknowledged that based on this decision, the broker of record will be changed to Mullaney Insurance with the policy remaining with the Injured Workers Insurance Fund. Councilmen Price and Travers opposed.
The Council approved the request of Allen Nelson, Vice Commodore of the Cambridge Power Boat Regatta Association, and agreed to waive fees for ambulance services for the Cambridge Power Boat Regatta being held on July 22nd through July 25th, 2010. The Council acknowledged that there must be one dedicated ambulance that must remain on-site for the entire event.
LETTER OF SUPPORT - AFRICAN-AMERICAN HERITAGE GRANT – HERSHEL JOHNSON
Based on a request made by Herschel Johnson, the Council agreed to execute a letter of support for the grant application submitted by The Friends of Stanley Institute, Incorporated for Maryland Historical Trust Grant Funding under the African American Heritage Preservation Program to provide support for the acquisition, construction, and capital improvement of Christ Rock United Church. The Council acknowledged that the County cannot provide funding including a local match nor serve as applicant for the grant.
LETTER OF SUPPORT - MD AG EDUCATION & RURAL DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE FUND GRANT – HABITAT FOR HUMANITY
The Council, at the request of Nancy Andrew, Habitat for Humanity Deputy Director, agreed to execute a letter of support for Habitat’s grant application for funding from the Maryland Agricultural Education and Rural Development Assistance Fund to pay for the affiliate’s LEED certified construction manager who will oversee the construction of at least two LEED certified homes during FY 2011. The Council acknowledged that one of the homes will be constructed in Dorchester County.
PROPOSED 2011 STATEWIDE LEGISLATIVE DISCUSSION – MACO
The Council agreed to submit to the Maryland Association of Counties a request to encourage legislators to submit proposed legislation to require all convicted offenders of drunk driving to use an ignition interlock device.
LEASE RENEWAL – SANITARY DISTRICT OFFICE
The Council agreed to renew a lease between the Council and the Sanitary District for office space located on the second floor, Room 209, of the County Office Building, for May 31, 2010 through May 31, 2011 at the annual rate of $3,849.57.
EDA GRANT APPLICATION REQUEST FOR BUILDING REPAIRS – ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
The Council approved the request of Keasha Haythe, Economic Development Director, to submit a grant application to Economic Development Administration funding through the Global Mitigation Fund Grant in the amount of $607,750 with a $607,750 match for the repairs to the roof of the building owned by the County and leased by Interstate Container located at 903 Woods Road, Cambridge. The Council acknowledged that the match will be provided by Interstate Container and there will be no County funding required. This approval is contingent upon you providing E. Thomas Merryweather, County Attorney, with information regarding the modification of the lease between the County and Interstate Container regarding the term of the lease in light of EDA’s intention to place a lien on the subject property if the grant funds are awarded.
Ms. Baynard stated that in the interim between meetings the Council took the following actions: 1) agreed by a 5 to 0 vote to permit a member of Public Works Department to attend a one day workshop on Environmental Site Design in Wicomico County on July 13, 2010. The Council acknowledged that the $30 registration fee would come from the Engineering Budget and 2) agreed by a 4 to 1 vote agreed that in light of the current economic climate that no County staff will attend this year's Summer MACo conference to be held on August 18-21 in Ocean City; and 3) agreed by a 5 to 0 vote to include language in the BOE categorical budget approval letter seeking in some fashion the return of any anticipated fund balance for FY 2011 in preparation of the FY 2012 Budget.
EARNED REINVESTMENT SUMMER SUPPLY RECOMMENDATIONS-LOCAL MANAGEMENT BOARD
The Council approved the request of Ms. Shockley to allocate funds in the amount of $1,943.49, which are available from the Governor’s Office for Children, to support summer enrichment programs that provide academic enrichment, individual and or group goal setting leadership development, recreational activities and other youth development activities as follows: 1) $794.42 to New Beginnings Youth Center for program supplies; 2) $466.72 to the Empowerment Center for program supplies; and 3) $727.35 to the YMCA specifically for Camp Seagull for program supplies. The Council acknowledged that these funds will be awarded by June 15, 2010 and must be expended by August 1, 2010.
There was no public comment.
Councilman Price noted that residents have expressed concern that they have to include their bank account numbers on the application for the use of the Beulah Landfill despite being established customers. Ms. Baynard said it was her understanding that if an individual already has an account with the landfill and does not have credit issues they do not need to provide their bank information. She said she will obtain clarification.
The Council agreed to send a letter to Governor Martin O’Malley requesting that funding be restored for the replacement of the Dover Bridge and construction commence as soon as possible based on the age and disrepair of the bridge and the fact that it is used by emergency service personnel in the northern part of the County.
Based on an inquiry from Councilman Travers regarding erosion on Riverside Drive, Council requested that Mr. Weber provide options and proposed costs to address the erosion problems on that road for its review and consideration.
Councilman Newcomb noted that several residents have asked if there are reduced landfill tipping fee rates for seniors. The Council requested that Mr. Weber provide a summary of the landfill tipping fees charged by surrounding counties, including whether there are different rates for seniors for Council’s review.
With no further business to discuss, the Council adjourned.
Effie M. Elzey, Vice President
William V. Nichols