County Council Meeting Minutes
February 5, 2013
County Council of Dorchester County
Regular Meeting Minutes
February 5, 2013
The County Council of Dorchester County met in regular session on February 5, 2013 with the following members present: Present were Jay L. Newcomb, President; William V. Nichols, Vice President; Ricky Travers; Rick Price and Tom Bradshaw. Also present were E. Thomas Merryweather, County Attorney 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 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; pursuant §10-508(A)(7) to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter; and 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.
Voting in favor of the closed Executive Session were all Council members.
INVOCATION AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Councilman Price led the invocation and Brandi Oliver, Miss Outdoors; Cara Cameron, Little Miss Outdoors; and Ridge Brohawn, Little Mr. Outdoors, led the pledge of allegiance.
CALL FOR ADDITIONS OR DELETIONS TO AGENDA
The Council approved the following additions to the agenda: a request to advertise two Correctional Officer positions at the Detention Center; a discussion regarding interested party status for a new regional medical facility; change order requests for the replacement of a roof on a County owned building; and the scheduling of a bid opening for a design/build team to provide services for an incubator facility.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES- JANUARY 22, 2013
The Council approved the minutes of January 22, 2013.
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 $16,308,168.31.
EXECUTIVE SESSION SUMMARY
The County Council of Dorchester County convened in an Executive Session at 4:30 p.m. on February 5, 2013 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)(4) to consider a preliminary matter that concerns the proposal for a business or industrial organization to locate, expand, or remain in the State; pursuant §10-508(A)(7) to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter; and 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.
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 announced that the Council convened into an Executive Session on January 31, 2013 immediately following a budget work session to discuss personnel matters.
He also announced that the Council convened into an Executive Session at 4:30 p.m. on February 5, 2013 to discuss the following items: 1) discussed a matter with staff and legal counsel regarding a request for proposals; 2) received information from staff regarding improvements to a County owned property leased to a local business-agreed to discuss in open session; 3) discussed with Emergency Services Director a matter regarding public safety and personnel matters; 4) discussed a matter relating to emergency medical services billing; 5) deferred the request of the Warden to downgrade a position at the Detention Center by a 5 to 0 vote; 6) agreed to fill two vacant Correctional Officer positions by a 5 to 0 vote – agreed to consider a request to advertise these positions in open session; 7) approved the request of Emergency Services Director to hire two individuals to fill two vacant 911 Dispatcher positions at the 911 Communications Center by a 5 to 0 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.
PROCLAMATION-NATIONAL OUTDOOR SHOW MONTH
The Council presented a proclamation declaring the month of February 2013 as National Outdoor Show Month. The following individuals accepted the proclamation: Buddy Oberender; Bud Foxwell; Susan Windsor; Megan Newman; Lori Huber; Jen Curran; Marlene Meninger; Brandi Oliver, Miss Outdoors; Cara Cameron, Little Miss Outdoors; and Ridge Brohawn, Little Mr. Outdoors.
UPDATE-CENTER FOR ALLIED HEALTH AND ATHLETICS PROJECT-CHESAPEAKE COLLEGE
Dr. Barbara Viniar, President, Chesapeake College, provided an update of the plans on the Center for Allied Health and Athletics project. She said she had previously provided Council with proposed drawings for the building. She noted that a full set of drawings with the exact rendering of the exterior of the building should be available by March or April of 2013 and will be placed on the College’s website once finalized.
REQUEST TO USE FUND BALANCE-INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS-CHESAPEAKE COLLEGE
The Council approved the request of Dr. Barbara Viniar, President to use $487,000 of Chesapeake College’s June 30, 2012 unrestricted fund balance for the following information technology infrastructure projects: 1) replacement of the campus wireless network (estimated cost of $281,000); 2) replacement and upgrade of the uninterruptable power supply system (estimated cost of $73,000); and 3) upgrade network infrastructure (estimated cost of $133,000).
Councilman Newcomb provided an update on the condition of Jane Baynard, County Manager, who is currently on medical leave.
LEGISLATIVE SESSION - INTRODUCTION
BILL NO. 2013-1 AN ACT OF THE COUNTY COUNCIL OF DORCHESTER COUNTY, MARYLAND PURSUANT TO ARTICLE 25A, SECTION 5(S) OF THE ANNOTATED CODE OF MARYLAND REPEALING AND REENACTING SECTION 65-6(A) OF ARTICLE IV, ENTITLED INTERNATIONAL RESIDENTIAL CODE OF CHAPTER 65, ENTITLED BUILDING CODE OF THE DORCHESTER COUNTY CODE PROVIDING FOR REGULATIONS FOR ACCESSORY STRUCTURES FROM 300 SQUARE FEET UP TO 500 SQUARE FEET.
E. Thomas Merryweather, County Attorney, explained that Bill No. 2013-1 is to repeal and reenact Section 65-6(A) of Article IV, entitled “International Residential Code of Chapter 65,” entitled “Building Code of the Dorchester County Code” providing for regulations for accessory structures from 300 square feet up to 500 square feet. Steve Dodd, Planning and Zoning Director, explained that the legislation establishes foundation requirements for these types of structures. Mr. Merryweather noted that these proposed changes were developed in response to a residents’ request.
The Council agreed to proceed with publication of the public hearing on this matter.
DISCUSSION REGARDING INTERESTED PARTY STATUS FOR NEW REGIONAL MEDICAL FACILITY
Councilman Travers noted that staff has made numerous attempts on behalf of the Council to invite a Shore Health representative to meet with them regarding the future of health care in Dorchester County, particularly in light of the proposal to construct a new regional medical facility in Talbot County, Maryland. Councilman Travers stressed that the Council sought to have a conversation with this representative prior to the deadline for the submission of requests for interested party status which is February 11, 2013.
The Council agreed to seek interested party status through the Maryland Health Commission to garner rights to participate in proceedings regarding the University of Maryland Medical System’s application for a Certificate of Need to construct a new regional medical facility.
Wendell Foxwell, a Dorchester County resident, expressed concern that orthopedic surgery is no longer performed at the Dorchester General Hospital.
Donald Gray, resident, expressed his understanding that the original deed for the property on which the Dorchester General Hospital is located states that the property must be used for a medical facility. Councilman Travers said, at his request, staff at the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office and the Register of Wills have been attempting to locate the original deed. He said portions of the property were transferred to United Charities in 1906 and 1913 and that the facility was transferred several times thereafter until it was transferred to Shore Health Systems.
Mr. Gray expressed his opinion that the medical services currently offered at Dorchester General Hospital should remain even if a new regional medical center is built in Talbot County.
MARYLAND ENVIRONMENTAL TRUST CONSERVATION EASEMENT-ANNA FARM, LLC
The Council approved a written request from Ann Gutierrez Carlson, Conservation Easement Planner, on behalf of Anna Farm, LLC for approval of a proposed conservation easement donation on 226 acres on Route 16 to the Maryland Environmental Trust and Eastern Shore Land Conservancy, Inc. The Council acknowledged that the easement may provide a 15 year tax credit on the land and that the impact to the County’s property tax base will be $2,395.10.
REQUEST FOR LETTER OF SUPPORT-DORCHESTER REGIONAL TECHNOLOGY PARK AND INCUBATOR FACILITY-ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Pursuant to the request of Keasha Haythe, Economic Development Director, the Council agreed to send letters to Governor Martin O’Malley, Senator Barbara Mikulski and Senator Benjamin Cardin requesting their support for the Dorchester Regional Technology Park and Incubator projects.
BOARD APPOINTMENT/REQUEST TO OBTAIN LEGAL COUNSEL-BOARD OF BUILDING APPEALS-PLANNING AND ZONING
Pursuant to information provided by Steve Dodd, Planning and Zoning Director, the Council requested that he provide recommendations for its consideration to replace Tracey Wright on the Board of Building Appeals based on the fact that Mr. Wright is an employee with Middle Department Inspection Agency, Inc. (MDIA), the County’s contractor for building code enforcement. The Council recognized that there is a potential conflict of interest since any appeal filed will be against a decision made by MDIA staff. The Council also approved Mr. Dodd’s request to hire Walt Gunby as legal counsel for the Board of Building Appeals at an hourly rate of $150.
REQUEST TO AMEND COUNTY SCHEDULE OF FEES AND TO HOLD PUBLIC HEARING-PLANNING AND ZONING
The Council approved the request of Steve Dodd, Planning and Zoning Director to hold a public hearing to amend the County Schedule of Fees to change the buffer mitigation fee from $.40 square foot to $1.50 square foot and to set a Board of Building Appeals Application fee of $500 per case pursuant to Chapter 65 4(H) of the County Code which provides that a local jurisdiction can set an appeal fee at a level necessary to cover direct and incidental costs for the appeal.
The Council recognized its August 21, 2012 decision to amend the County Schedule of Fees to include the buffer mitigation fee to $.40 square foot subject to Critical Area Commission approval as part of a text amendment to the County’s Zoning Ordinance and Subdivision Regulations for refinements to the County’s Critical Area Program. The Council also recognized that the Critical Area Commission has advised that it will not accept the reduction until County staff can demonstrate that vegetation has been planted on at least 25 acres of land and has survived at least two seasons. The Council requested that Mr. Dodd prepare a proposal to use existing County land for this purpose for its review and consideration. The Council acknowledged that there must be a tidewater buffer on the property; that once planted the property will have to placed into an easement; and that there may be County owned land on Cassons Neck (approximately 12 acres) that can be utilized for this purpose. The Council suggested that Mr. Dodd contact Scott Eberspacher, Recreation and Parks Director, regarding the possible use of County owned property on Maple Dam Road.
FY14 RURAL LEGACY PROGRAM APPLICATION APPROVAL REQUEST-PLANNING AND ZONING
The Council approved the request of Rodney Banks, Assistant Planning and Zoning Director, to submit applications for the Marshyhope Rural Legacy Focus Area and Nanticoke Rural Legacy Focus Area to the State for FY 2014 Maryland Rural Legacy Program grant funds with the Marshyhope area being the priority application for the year and the Nanticoke Rural Legacy Area being priority two.
REQUEST TO SOLE SOURCE AND PURCHASE DAILY COVER TARP-LANDFILL/PUBLIC WORKS
The Council approved the request of Tom Moore, Public Works Director, to sole source and purchase from J & M Industries, Inc. one 96’x100’ Durashield 12000 FR tarp at the cost of $6,145 which has been approved by the Maryland Department of Environment as vendor specific. The Council acknowledged that funds from the rental of equipment account of the Landfill budget will be utilized to purchase the daily cover tarp.
REQUEST TO ADVERTISE FOR PROPOSALS-DESIGN AND EXECUTION OF MURAL-CHESAPEAKE COUNTRY SCENIC BYWAY-TOURISM
The Council approved the request of Amanda Fenstermaker, Tourism Director, to advertise a request for proposals for the design and execution of a heritage-related mural along the Michener Chesapeake Country Scenic Byway for the caboose at the City of Cambridge’s former railroad station on 200 Trenton Street. The Council acknowledged that this will be the first in a series of five murals for the County and that the project is funded through a national Scenic Byways Program grant and in-kind services.
SENATE BILL 156-COURTS-SERVICE OF PROCESS-INCREASE IN SHERIFF’S FEES-DISTRIBUTION TO RENTAL ALLOWANCE PROGRAM FUND
The Council agreed to send a letter of opposition to Senate Bill 156 entitled “Courts-Service of Process-Increase in Sheriff’s Fees-Distribution to Rental Allowance Program Fund” which will raise service of process fees $10 for items served by a sheriff with the additional revenue being used to fund the Maryland Rental Allowance Program, to be administered by the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development. This opposition was based on Council’s concerns that the proposed legislation will increase costs for taxpayers and local businesses and that the additional revenue will be used for a purpose other than public safety.
FY12 EMERGENCY SOLUTIONS GRANT APPLICATION-HOMELESSNESS PREVENTION-DELMARVA COMMUNITY SERVICES
The Council approved the request of Santo Grande, President/CEO, Delmarva Community Services, to accept a Department of Housing and Community Development award from the Emergency Solutions Grant Program in the amount of $57,750 with no County match. The Council acknowledged that the funds will be used to support homelessness prevention and rapid re-housing assistance activities administered by Delmarva Community Services.
CHANGE ORDER REQUESTS FOR ROOF REPLACEMENT OF A COUNTY OWNED BUILDING
The Council approved the request of Tom Moore, Public Works Director, to execute the following six change orders for the replacement of the roof of the County owned building located at 903 Woods Road, Cambridge, which is leased to Interstate Corrpack, contingent upon RBCI Corporation, the contractor, providing written confirmation that all subcontractors have been paid prior to any additional distribution of funds: 1) haul debris to Landfill; $17,500; 2) additional full depth gypdeck, $33,000; 3) remove partial depth gypdeck for a savings of $21,000; 4) replace portion of gypsum deck with steel deck, $175,134; 4) wall roof intersection, $9,949; 5) remove existing plywood and siding down to steel frame, $8,625; and 6) remove and replace wood blocking at roof edge of Area 8, $2,939.
The Council acknowledged that the following line items were reduced in order to cover the $226,147 in change orders: administration, $3,269; hauling and disposal of debris, $17,500; and floor replacement $10,350. The Council also acknowledged that the 50% local share of the project has increased from $549,236 to $607,750, therefore Interstate Corrpack has provided a check in the amount of $58,514 to cover its share of the costs associated with the change orders. Additionally, the Council recognized that due to fact that the project cost is now at the limit of Economic Development Administration funds ($1,215,500) Interstate Corrpack will be responsible for any further costs above this newly revised total project cost. Furthermore, the Council recognized that the Economic Development Administration has reviewed and approved the change orders.
REQUEST TO ADVERTISE CORRECTIONAL OFFICER POSITIONS AT DETENTION CENTER
The Council agreed to advertise two vacant Correctional Officer positions at the Detention Center pursuant to County policy.
SCHEDULING OF A BID OPENING FOR DESIGN/BUILD TEAM INCUBATOR FACILITY
Because neither the request for proposals nor an addendum for a Design/Build Team to provide services for the Dorchester County Eastern Shore Innovation Center referenced a bid opening pursuant to County Purchasing Policies and Procedures, the Council instructed that a public bid opening be held on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 at 10 a.m. in Room 110 of the Dorchester County Office building. The Council further instructed that all parties who received notification of the request for proposals and the addendum be made aware of this date and time.
COUNCIL’S CORRESPONDENCE/TELEPHONE POLL CONFIRMATIONS
Councilman Newcomb announced that in the interim between meetings Council, by means of a poll, took the following action(s): 1) Agreed, by a 5 to 0 vote, to send a letter of support for House Bill 106 entitled “Sustainable Growth and Agricultural Preservation Act of 2012-Repeal” to repeal the Act that was adopted by Senate Bill 236 during the 2012 Maryland General Assembly Legislative Session, which established standards, procedures and regulations that apply to development within designated tier areas; 2) agreed to provide $5,000 annually for ten years for space for County employees in the Soil Conservation Department at a specific location by a 5 to 0 vote in lieu of renting space at the Dorchester County Office Building; and 3) by a 5 to 0 vote, agreed to reschedule the next budget work session from February 14, 2013 at 4:30 p.m. to February 12, 2013 at 4:30 p.m.
Mr. Gray advised Council that he viewed several passengers being unloaded from County vehicles at a local high school. He expressed his opinion that employees should not be allowed to use County vehicles for personal use, particularly in light of potential liability issues and rising fuel costs. Councilman Newcomb noted that the Council members have discussed with Sheriff James Phillips their concerns regarding personal use of County vehicles and that if Mr. Gray has any concerns about the use of vehicles assigned to the Sheriff’s Office he needs to contact Sheriff Phillips directly. Councilman Newcomb advised that the Council members cannot address his concerns regarding the possible use of work vehicles by County employees unless he provides a tag number or a vehicle identification number.
Based on concerns expressed by Mr. Gray about the condition of the road that leads to the Elliott Island Boat Ramp, including possible potholes in the road surface, the Council acknowledged that Mr. Moore will have staff view this area.
Councilman Bradshaw said the Clean Chesapeake Coalition members discussed House Bill 106 to repeal the Sustainable Growth and Agricultural Preservation Act (Senate Bill 236 which passed during the 2012 legislative session) including possible amendments. He expressed his understanding that Governor Martin O’Malley and other State representatives may not be in favor of the passage of this legislation.
Councilman Bradshaw noted that he provided each Council member a copy of a letter the Frederick County Board of Commissioners sent to the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee Chairman and members opposing Senate Bill 281, House Bill 294 entitled “Firearm Safety Act of 2013” which, in his opinion infringes on the second amendment rights of citizens. He asked the Council to consider sending a letter of opposition to the legislation. The Council members requested that the legislation be forwarded to them for their review and consideration prior to making a decision on whether to send a letter in opposition. Councilman Price noted that a 15 minute debate was held during a Maryland Association of Counties Legislative Committee meeting with the end result being a decision by the members to allow each local jurisdiction the opportunity to choose whether to support or oppose the bill.
Bruce Coulson, resident, expressed his understanding that regulations to obtain a permit to carry a gun in the State of Maryland are more stringent than those in the State of Delaware.
Councilman Newcomb noted that Tom Moore, Public Works Director, was advised to proceed with the placement of oyster shell recycling bins at County recycling stations, which the Oyster Recovery Partnership will collect and use as part of their recovery effort.
Councilman Newcomb announced that a budget work session is scheduled for February 12, 2013 at 4:30 p.m. and that the next regularly scheduled County Council meeting is February 19, 2013 at 6:00 p.m.
With no further business to discuss, the Council adjourned.
ATTEST: DORCHESTER COUNTY COUNCIL:
Jane Baynard, County Manager Jay L. Newcomb, President
William V. Nichols, Vice President
Approved the ______day of _______________, 2013.