MINUTES OF A REGULAR MEETING OF THE GILCHRIST COUNTY BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS, HELD MARCH 16, 1998.
The Gilchrist County Board of County Commissioners, in and for Gilchrist County, Florida, convened in a regular meeting held March 16, 1998, at 5:00 p.m., in the County Commissioner's Meeting Room, located in the Gilchrist County Courthouse, 112 South Main Street, Trenton, Florida, with the following members present to-wit:
Jimmie Sheffield, Chair
Sue B. Suggs
Others in attendance were: Joseph W. Gilliam, Clerk of Circuit Court, Samuel Mutch, County Attorney, Ron McQueen, EMA/County Coordinator, Sherree Pitzarell & Sam Ferguson, Deputy Clerks, Buddy Ellison, MIS Director, Nathan Martin, Road Superintendent, Lisa and Corbit Alday, Sumitt Professional Services, C. D. Moore, county resident.
Nathan Martin- County Road Department:
Mr. Martin spoke to the Board about the repair bill for the fuel truck. He anticipates the total will be about $10,000 from Ring Power. Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Durden to approve payment of the bill. The Board instructed Mr. Martin to find out if there is a warranty on the repairs. Mr. Martin stated that this bill does not include the work from Ring Power in Lake City. Commissioner Durden stated he thinks that problem has been resolved. The motion carried unanimously.
Mr. Mutch presented a memo regarding his role in a quasi-judicial hearing. There is a court case which provides that if the county attorney advises the Board in quasi-judicial proceedings, he can not advise the county staff. He can advise the Planning & Zoning Board but again, can not assist the staff. Commissioner Durden feels this would not create a problem. Commissioner Suggs stated the Board should be cautious. Mr. Mutch stated there are several attorney's that are experienced in and could possibly cost much less than the current firm is charging the county. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Durden, to authorize Mr. Mutch to prepare a RFP for attorney services for land use issues. The motion carried unanimously.
Mr. Mutch presented a memo regarding forfeitures, which is addressed to the Sheriff. He has also prepared instructions for the Sheriff and the deputies regarding forfeitures procedures.
Mr. Mutch has prepared an interlocal agreement for county line road maintenance and will send it to Ms. Marshall, Alachua County attorney, for her approval and presentation to Alachua County Board of County Commissioners.
Mr. Mutch spoke to Dave Wagner about the interlocal agreement with Alachua County for solid waste disposal. Mr. Wagner anticipates a fee of $36-$39 per ton, plus a $3 surcharge. Gilchrist County is the only local government outside of Alachua County that they serve. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson, to approve the interlocal agreement. The motion carried unanimously.
Mr. Gilliam spoke to the Board about the Law Library budget. This year's budget was adopted at $5910 and after 6 months into the fiscal year, there is a balance of $15.65. Most of the costs are fixed costs, such as subscriptions. Last year, the county spent $7231 for the Law Library budget. The budget needs to be amended in order to continue paying for the subscriptions. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson, to amend the budget by $2500, moving the funds from General Revenue reserve to the Law Library Fund. The motion passed unanimously.
When the budget was adopted this year, some expenses were broken out for easier tracking. Information System Network Support was omitted ($1766), which is a fee distributed throughout the Eighth Judicial Circuit whereby each county pays their portion, based on population. The funds are in the budget, however, they were moved to other line items. Budget entry 98-059 is submitted to move the funds back into the proper area to pay for network support. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Durden to approve the transfer. The motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Gilliam presented 7 SHIP applications, recommended for approval by the SHIP Loan Review Committee:
Applicant Income SHIP $ Total Cost Type Project
E. Crews VL 22,500 $35,000 New Construction
D. Chub VL 22,500 $54,400 Purchase/rehab
P. Lindsey L 17,500 $55,835 New Construction
J. Wilbert L 17,500 $52,400 Purchase/rehab
E. Crooms L 17,500 $46,830 Purchase/rehab
W. Mithcell L 17,500 $56,350 Purchase/rehab
P. Barton L 17,500 $63,623 Purchase/rehab
Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion to approve the loans as recommended by the SHIP Loan Review Committee. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush and unanimously approved.
There are two current SHIP recipients requesting that the county subordinate to a new first mortgage: Diane Avery and Thereasa Gee. In both cases, the recipients are consolidating debts with their first mortgage. The SHIP Loan Review Committee recommends that the county subordinate their position on the Avery loan because they have lived in the home for four years and the outstanding debt on the SHIP loan has been substantially reduced. Commissioner Durden made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson, to approve subordination to the new first mortgage. The motion carried unanimously.
The SHIP Loan Review Committee does not recommend that the county subordinate the Tereasa Gee loan because Ms. Gee has only had the house since September 1997, and very little equity has been paid on the loan. Commissioner Durden made a motion to deny the subordination request. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Suggs and unanimously approved.
Jim Ziegler, former park manager, has requested that he be paid for his unused leave time. He has not been paid because he has a good deal of personal property at Hart Springs, including cats which have been left in the mobile home at the park. In the past, the Board has withheld paying unused leave time until someone can check to make sure that all the county's property is accounted for and all the manager's personal property is removed. Commissioner Durden made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Bush to withhold paying the leave until it can be determined what damage, if any has been done to the mobile home. The motion carried unanimously. Mr. McQueen stated that it is his understanding that there are dogs stranded on the porch of the mobile home due to the flooding of the Suwannee River.
Prices were submitted for a utility body to install on the county maintenance truck. Commissioner Suggs stated she would call Pinellas County to see if they have any surplus.
Mr. Gilliam spoke to the Board about audit services, which will cost about $42,000 this year and recommended that the Board seek proposals for those services for the fiscal year beginning October 1, 1998. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Durden to authorize Mr. Gilliam to prepare a request for proposals for audit services. The motion carried unanimously. Commissioner Suggs made motion to draft a job description for a county engineer position. There followed discussion among Board members and the county attorney. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved.
Public Hearing- CDBG Block Grant for Neighborhood Revitilization:
The deadline for submission of CDBG applications has been extended from March 31st to June 30th, which will work out well for Gilchrist County. Even though this will delay the county project for about three months, the County has been trying to receive application points under the hazard mitigation strategy. Because of the President's declaration of disaster in this county, they will be able the access the grant through hazard mitigation. The grant application is being submitted for street improvements and drainage with a total of 661 possible points. According to Ms. Alday, grants have typically been awarded for that score. The hazard documentation will boost the points to 685. The delay will also allow time to access health and safety points, which will provide another 25 points. Ms. Alday reviewed the application and project, asking for a motion to submit the application. There were about 101 homes in the target area. There are 122 very low income beneficiaries and 180 low to moderate beneficiaries for a total of 241. This addresses the flooded area. The number of beneficiaries are reduced for the street improvement because there will not be as much street improvements as flood and drainage, however, all this will change a little because when the application is submitted, it will not be for drainage and street improvements, but hazard mitigation. This type of application allows more flexibility. The area map was presented to the Board, indicating two (2) lane ruts that have never received any improvements. The project includes clearing and widening of these "roads", and the addition of limerock and drainage. The Board discussed the anti-displacement policy. The road improvements will allow emergency access, such as fire and rescue to homes in that area. Commissioner Durden asked about the required county match for the grant. Some of the mitigation funds may be applied as a match for this grant. Ms. Alday stated that the County may be eligible for many grants due to the disaster declaration. They are waiting for the final information from the federal government and when it's available, they will hold a workshop with the Board. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve submission of the application, with the hazard mitigation changes. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Durden and unanimously approved.
Clerk's Report (cont.):
Mr. Gilliam stated that a budget amendment previously approved by the Board required a resolution, to increase the General Revenue fund by $279.47 (monies collected for the Florida Arts licenses plats), budget adjustment 98054. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Durden, to amend the General Revenue fund by resolution. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Durden and unanimously approved. A copy of resolution 98-12 is on file with the Clerk's Office.
Mr. Gilliam reported that the county paid $8221.75 for engineering services in 1997. So far this fiscal year, he has been paid $11,167.50. Commissioner Wilkerson stated that the county can not hire an engineer for that amount. Commissioner Suggs agreed and the Board decided not to seek proposals for a county engineer.
Mr. Buddy Ellison spoke to the Board about internet accounts. Several county agencies already have internet and he is working on providing the county a dedicated internet connection, that all the county agencies can use. A web page for each individual agency will be available. BellSouth has submitted a quote for approximately $800 per month, providing the entire package.
The life safety review, and ADA study from the University of Florida was presented to the Board by Mr. Gilliam. Mr. Gilliam recommends that the Board appoint a committee to develop a plan for the future use of the courthouse building. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to notice the School Board and the State Attorney's Office to vacate the second floors immediately. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Durden and unanimously approved. Mr. Mutch will prepare a letter.
Commissioner Suggs spoke to the Board about a resolution designating Florida as a rural agriculture state. Commissioner Suggs will be in Washington D. C. next week, for the Florida State Rural Development Council and would like to present the resolution to them. Commissioner Durden made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Bush to adopt the resolution, recognizing the state as a rural agriculture state. The motion carried unanimously. A copy of resolution 98-13 is on file in the Clerk's Office.
EMA/County Coordinator's Report:
Mr. McQueen reminded the Board that there will be a Growth Management conference in Tampa, April 20-22. Commissioners Suggs and Durden stated they would try to attend.
Following discussion, Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson, to adopt a resolution, declaring a state of emergency in the county, due to high flood waters. The motion carried unanimously. A copy of resolution 98-14 is on file in the Clerk's Office.
Last month, DCA provided the county with an award package on the availability of funds for local mitigation strategy and Mr. McQueen now has the contract documents. Mr. McQueen is going to meet with the cities to determine if they are going to do their own mitigation strategies or if they want to be included with the county. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Durden to approve the agreement with DCA. The motion passed unanimously. Following discussion, the Board authorized Mr. McQueen to advertise for a position to develop this program and to train to become a building inspector.
BellSouth provides the pay phone located in the courthouse, which requires a contract. Commissioner Bush made a motion to approve the contract. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Suggs and unanimously approved. Mr. Mutch stated that he would like the record to reflect that he did not make a recommendation to the Board regarding this issue do to a conflict of interest.
Mr. McQueen presented an interlocal agreement between Dixie and Gilchrist counties for each of their building departments to cooperate and coordinate with the other in responding to the needs of each county relating to building official duties on an as needed basis, because Dixie County has a need for an administrator building official. They do not have that position filled and their building inspector can not work without that position occupied. This agreement will be for approximately two weeks until they can fill that position. Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Bush to approve the interlocal agreement. The motion carried unanimously.
All documents for the CR340 road grant has been completed and Mr. McQueen is waiting for approval in writing. For an advance, we must send a copy of the contract, for up to 80% of the grant funds. Lee Mills suggests that all of CR 232 be bid (the county may be eligible for disaster funds to assist with this road). Mr. Mills also suggests that the landfill road be included. There are 31 property owners on the landfill road where right-of-way is needed. If the Board compensates one property owner, then all property owners need to be compensated. Quit Claim Deeds need to be signed and Mr. McQueen recommends that a $100 incentive be paid to those property owners. In addition, the county will take down any fences and install new fences, as well as install new drive-ways and culverts. Commissioner Durden made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Suggs to approve the $100 incentive and authorize Mr. McQueen and Mr. Mutch to proceed with the Quit Claim Deeds. The motion carried unanimously.
Mr. McQueen reported that the FEMA disaster team will come back at the end of this week or next week. FEMA will pay their portion (87 ½%) of the cost of leasing equipment, labor, etc. The county can hire temporary positions and be reimbursed up to 100% and one position should be an assistant for Mr. Martin to complete the necessary paper work required by FEMA. Temporary drivers are needed for moving rock and the rock can be purchased from Newberry at 100% reimbursement rate. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Durden to authorize Mr. McQueen to mitigate and put into place the guidelines set by FEMA, including the purchase and lease of rock and trucks, and the hiring of temporary drivers and other relevant positions. The motion carried unanimously.
There being no further business to discuss, Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion to adjourn at 8:00 p.m. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush and unanimously approved.
JIMMIE SHEFFIELD, CHAIR
JOSEPH W. GILLIAM, CLERK