Meeting Minutes

Meeting Minutes
posted: 12/01/10

County Council Meeting Minutes

November 9, 2010

County Council of Dorchester County

Regular Meeting Minutes

November 9, 2010


The County Council of Dorchester County met in regular session on November 9, 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; Jane Baynard, County Manager and Donna Lane, Executive Administrative Specialist.





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  §10-508(A)(7) to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter.     


Voting in favor of the closed Executive Session were all present Council members.





The Council observed a moment of silence for the veterans for their service.


Councilman Travers led the invocation and Mr. Holden led the pledge of allegiance.




The Council approved the addition of a request to advertise full time and part time vacancies in the Emergency Medical Services Department to the agenda.   



The Council approved the minutes of October 19, 2010.


The Council approved vouchers as presented.



Councilman Newcomb reported total cash and investments as $12,221,144.87.



Councilman Newcomb announced that the Council, at its October 19, 2010 meeting, discussed personnel matters in the Emergency Medical Services Department which was reported in the Executive Session Summary during the October 19th regular session.  He explained that during that discussion the Council, based on the County Manager’s recommendation, agreed to offer Scott Wheatley a temporary position as Interim Emergency Medical Services Manager in the Emergency Medical Services Department contingent upon his acceptance.  Councilman Newcomb noted that Mr. Wheatley accepted the offer and that effective October 20, 2010 he assumed that interim role.   He said Mr. Wheatley is also the Quality Assurance Officer for the EMS Department and that the Council has every confidence in Mr. Wheatley in his new interim role with Dorchester County.


Councilman Newcomb acknowledged that Mr. Wheatley is present.


The County Council of Dorchester County convened in an Executive Session at 4:30 p.m. on November 9, 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  §10-508(A)(7) to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter.   

Motion made, seconded and carried to conduct a closed session pursuant to the above.  All present 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.


Action taken at the closed session: 1) discussed an Ethics Commission opinion regarding the Local Management Board Director’s participation on committees and boards – took no action; 2) approved a request from the Maintenance Director to hire an individual to fill a vacant Custodian position by a 3 to 2 vote; 3) approved a request from the Public Works Director to hire an individual to fill a vacant Motor Equipment Operator IV position and a Motor Equipment Operator III position in the Landfill Division by a 5 to 0 vote; 4) Council deferred a request from the Public Works Director to hire an individual to fill a vacant Motor Equipment Operator III position in the Highway Division by a 5 to 0 vote; 5) discussed personnel issues with the Interim Emergency Medical Services Director-agreed to several operational recommendations to be implemented by Director by a 5 to 0 vote; 6) received information relating to an employee grievance-took no action; 7) discussed with legal counsel a matter relating to emergency medical services billing; 8) agreed to execute an agreement relating to a foreclosed property that will be deeded to the County by a 5 to 0 vote; 9) acknowledged that a telephone poll was conducted regarding emergency medical services billing; and 10) discussed a matter relating to an economic development item–agreed to send clarification correspondence to City of Cambridge and the State.

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.




The Council presented a proclamation declaring November 2010 as Hospice-Palliative Care Month.  Cynthia Howard accepted the proclamation on behalf of Coastal Hospice.




The Council and Mr. Wheatley presented commendations to Wayne Sides, Terry Hickman, R.J. Helmer and Rose Murphy for receiving recognition from the Medical Staff Quality Committee of Shore Health System for providing exemplary pre-hospital care to a patient transported to Easton Memorial Hospital on July 4, 2010.   Mr. Sides, Mr. Hickman, Mr. Helmer and Ms. Murphy accepted the commendations.




The Council presented a proclamation declaring November 20, 2010 as “Anna Ella Carroll Day” in recognition of the service she rendered during the late Civil War as a military strategist.  Earl Brannock, Irene Harper, Sandy Saunders, Mabel Potter, Claude Gootee, Gene Newcomb, Susan Bautz and Delegate Adelaide Eckardt accepted the proclamation.  Councilman Newcomb noted that the attendees for the Anna Ella Carroll Day Proclamation are recording the presentation.




Tim Ailsworth, Executive Director for Local Government Insurance Trust (LGIT), presented a LGIT training grant award in the amount of $300 to the Dorchester County Highway Division to reimburse staff for its attendance at the Greater Chesapeake Damage Prevention Training Conference which was held in October 2010.  Mr. Ailsworth acknowledged that Michael Sanderson, Executive Director, Maryland Association of Counties, was present.   He explained that LGIT was formed by local government entities within the State of Maryland in 1987 and provides primary and excess liability, automobile, environmental and property insurance to its members.  He noted that Dorchester County achieved a savings of 22% in its annual insurance premium for the current year.   Mr. Ailsworth said that in addition to providing an employment hotline to its members, LGIT also offers a link on their website which provides useful information to Human Resource Directors including legal updates.  

 PUBLIC HEARING-ACCEPTANCE OF ROAD-ANNIE LANE                                                                                               

E. Thomas Merryweather, County Attorney, advised that a public hearing is being held pursuant to Chapter 40 of the Dorchester County Code to accept Annie Lane, consisting of 8.2 miles, into the County’s road system.  He expressed his understanding that the road has been completed, subject to a Public Road Construction Agreement between Dorchester County, Maryland and Cedar Point Investments, LLC and Oakley Chase, LLC, and has been built to County standards.  He noted that the developer will have to execute a Deed of Dedication to transfer the road into the County system if the Council chooses to accept the road and sign a release of the prior road construction agreement.    Chuck Weber, Public Works Director, confirmed that the road has been built to County standards.  He noted that Bill Wallace of Blackwater Management, LLC, is present on behalf of the developer.


No public comment was made.


The Council agreed to accept Annie Lane into the County road system and to execute an Acceptance of Roads and Release agreement.


REQUEST TO USE EGYPT ROAD PARK-BOY SCOUTS                                                        


The Council approved the request of Sean O’Connor, Vice Chief of Program, Choptank Chapter, Order of the Arrow, Boy Scouts of America, and Mike O’Connor, Assistant Cub Master for Boy Scout Pack 209, and agreed to allow the Choptank Chapter of the Nentego Lodge to host a camporee the weekend of April 15-17, 2011 at Snow’s Turn Park on Egypt Road.   The Council acknowledged that the approval is contingent upon the following conditions: 1) that the Boy Scouts contact the Dorchester County Board of Education seeking permission to use Maple Elementary School or Cambridge South Dorchester High School for parking for attendees; 2) that the Boy Scouts accept responsibility for all costs and delivery of portable toilets to and from site; 3) that the Boy Scouts provide a Certificate of insurance for the event and agree to hold the County harmless in any incident that should arise; and 4)  that Egypt Road Park be returned in the same condition as it is found prior to the event.


Additionally, the Council agreed to allow the Boy Scouts to have a campfire on Saturday, April 16, 2011 provided that they contact the Dorchester County Forestry Board and local volunteer fire company so they may view and monitor the area that evening during the lighting of the campfire.  The Council acknowledged that only three to four vehicles will be parked in the park area.  The Council further acknowledged that the Recreation and Parks Board, at its September 2010 meeting, voted in favor of allowing the Boy Scout troop to use this park contingent upon the Boy Scouts obtaining final approval from the County Council.         





The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber to award the bid for the renovation of the Back Creek Dock Marine Facility electrical service and security lighting to 1st Electric of Willards, Maryland, the lowest bidder, at the cost of $7,700, contingent upon the approval of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.  The Council acknowledged that the funding for the project will come from a Maryland Department of Natural Resources Waterway Improvement Fund grant. 




The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber to advertise for bids to supply crushed stone to the Highway Department for the calendar year of 2011 (January 1, 2011 through December 31, 2011). 




The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber to accept a grant award from the Maryland Aviation Administration in the amount of $1,177 which represents 2.5% of the $47,100 total project cost for the runway obstruction removal project at the Cambridge Dorchester Airport.  The Council acknowledged that the local share of 2.5% ($1,177) has been identified in the FY 2011 Capital Budget under the Runway Extension project and the remaining 95% will come from a Federal Aviation Administration grant.




The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber to execute a change order (Change Order No. 1) to the contract between the Dorchester County Council and American Paving Corporation to increase the amount of tonnage to extend paving and line striping on Maple Dam Road from 4.0 miles to approximately 5.6 miles in order to utilize the remaining project funding at a cost of $94,855.80 by shifting $30,357.80 from the current contract and using approximately $64,498 which was originally designated for contracting with the State Highway Administration (SHA) for construction management and material testing.  The Council acknowledged that the additional road mileage is within the State Highway Administration’s prior approved project area.  The Council further acknowledged that funding for the project is from a Maryland Department of Transportation American Recovery and Reinvestment Act Grant.


Councilman Nichols left the meeting.



The Council approved the request of Mr. Weber and agreed to amend the March 30, 2010 Construction Management Services Contract between the County and Andrews, Miller and Associates to increase the not-to-exceed contract amount by an additional $59,600 to cover resident inspection services for Contract #2- Technology Park Utility and Infrastructure Improvements.  The Council acknowledged that this will increase the contracted amount from $115,410.74 to $215,010.74.  The Council further acknowledged that funds for this expenditure is included in the approved Project Budget dated June 8, 2010 and that Contract #2 inspection costs will now consist of the $115,900 awarded to URS Corporation on July 6, 2010 for Construction Phase Services during the improvements and the additional $59,600 contract amendment with Andrews, Miller and Associates.




The Council approved the request of Amanda Fenstermaker, Tourism Director, to extend the FY 2010 Maryland Heritage Area Authority Operating Assistance Grant for the Heart of Chesapeake Country Heritage Area for three months to January 31, 2011 to manage the transition between the FY 2010 and the FY 2011 grants and to provide for continuous financial coverage of program expenditures.




The Council approved the request of Nancy Shockley, Local Management Board Director, to accept the 2010 Weatherization Agreement between the State of Maryland, Department of Housing and Community Development and Dorchester County for funding in the amount of $33,550 to provide weatherization services by using the funds as follows: $29,358 for weatherization services; $1,954 for administrative expenses and $2,238 for training and technical assistance.    The Council acknowledged that the funds are in addition to the $626,279 Weatherization funds received by the County from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which the Council approved at its July 2, 2009 meeting.  The Council further acknowledged that the term of agreement is from July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011.




Jane Baynard, County Manager, stated that Jay Meredith, Resident Engineer of the State Highway Administration, advised her that the State Highway Administration is considering altering the traffic pattern at Rosalyn Avenue and the Route 50 Intersection to allow only westbound and eastbound traffic on Route 50 to make left hand turns on Rosalyn Avenue.  She further explained that the current allowance to cross Route 50 on Rosalyn Avenue will be prohibited.  She noted that flex-posts will be placed in the intersection to limit access.    Ms. Baynard explained that the change is being made to assist with traffic flow and lessen collision risks because the intersection is so shallow.    Ms. Baynard noted that Mr. Meredith has asked if Council has any objections or concerns about the changes.


The Council members agreed to send a letter to the State Highway Administration noting that they have no objections with the proposed change in the traffic pattern at the Rosalyn/Route 50 intersection.




Ms. Baynard advised that in the interim between meetings the Council, by means of telephone poll, took the following actions: 1) approved a request from Michele Dinkel, Maryland Association of Counties Research Specialist, to permit Dorchester County Tourism staff to provide assistance at the registration desk during the Winter Maryland Association of Counties Conference on January 5th to 7th , 2011 with costs being funded from the Tourism budget by a 5 to 0 vote; and 2) approved the submission of a grant application to the Governor's Office of Crime Control and Prevention seeking funding for the Sheriff’s Office from the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant Program of $112,035 with no cash or in-kind match to purchase and install six License Plate Recognition and for  training by a 4 to 1 vote.



The Council approved the request of Scott Wheatley, Interim Emergency Medical Services Manager, to advertise for part time on-call and full time paramedic positions.



Tony LeCompte, a Dorchester County resident thanked the Council for sending a letter to the Maryland Department of Environment (MDE) to ask that MDE staff reconsider its exclusion of the property owned by Mr. LeCompte into the Woolford Madison sewer extension project.  He said that he received another refusal letter and that he is still pursuing the matter, particularly in light of the fact that he only received an interim sewer permit and must discontinue use of that system upon the availability of public utilities.



Councilman Price noted that a resident has questioned whether a savings can be achieved if the size of the white line striping on the side of County roads is reduced.  Mr. Weber said line stripping on the side of roadways by the County has been discontinued.

 Based on a motion made by Councilman Price, the Council agreed to send a letter to the Maryland Department of Environment and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources requesting an update on the bacteria count in the waters between the Choptank River bridge and Green Point which resulted in the closure of oyster harvesting in that area.   


In response to a question from Councilman Travers, Ms. Baynard explained that Robert Tieder, Dorchester County Sanitary Commission Chair, met with City of Cambridge representatives on November 8, 2010 about extending the Sanitary District’s line down Bucktown Road to service approximately 22 houses.  She said that Mr. Tieder told her he received positive feedback from those representatives and will be attending a future City Council meeting to formally discuss the project and to request that the City Council schedule a public hearing.  


Councilman Newcomb commended and thanked the watermen and emergency medical service responders who answered a marine distress call earlier in the day in the Hoopers Island area. 


Councilman Newcomb noted that the last meeting Councilwoman Elzey is scheduled to attend is November 23, 2010 pending swearing in of the new Council on December 7, 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



                                                                                                Ricky Travers



                                                                                                Rick Price


Approved the ______day of  ____________, 2010.