MINUTES OF A REGULAR MEETING OF THE GILCHRIST COUNTY BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS HELD MONDAY, AUGUST 17, 1998.
The Gilchrist County Board of County Commissioners, in and for Gilchrist County Florida convened in a regular meeting on Monday, August 17, 1998, at 5:00 p.m., in the County Commissioner's Meeting Room, located in the Gilchrist County Courthouse, 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, Kim Yozgat, County Attorney, Ron McQueen, EMA/County Coordinator, Sherree Pitzarell, Deputy Clerk, and Sam Ferguson, Finance Director.
Public Hearing- Comprehensive Plan Amendment CPA 98-1, Public Use for Sheriff's Complex (small scale amendment):
Mr. McQueen reported that the Planning and Zoning Board has recommended approval to change the use of Ag 2 to Public Lands for the property near Walker's Curve for the Sheriff's Complex Building. This involves less than 10 acres. Mr. McQueen explained that the firing range was approved for a special exception under the A-2 classification, which is a proper use for that type of activity. Commissioner Durden made a motion to approve the land use change by ordinance. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved. A copy of ordinance 98-14 is on file in the Clerk's Office.
Commissioner Suggs stated that Tommy Andrews in here on behalf of the FFA Alumni. The Alumni will need a permit from the Suwannee River Water Management District and if they apply under the county's name, it will only cost $100. However, if they apply on their own, it will cost much more. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to apply for the permit on their behalf. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson. Commissioner Durden filed a conflict of interest form, disclosing that he is a member of the FFA Alumni Board of Directors. Vote of the Board was as follows:
Commissioner Suggs stated that the Alumni is also interested in obtaining a tax exemption for a public use facility. The county attorney is going to make a recommendation on that issue at the next meeting. The Alumni also needs a building permit, and Commissioner Suggs feels that the county may have the ability to waive the permit, however, the county attorney will also research that issue and report back to the Board.
Mr. McQueen presented a resolution for the Board's consideration, requesting the Suwannee River Water Management District to waive all permit fees above $100. Gilchrist County qualifies because of it's population and millage cap. Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Durden to adopt the resolution. The motion passed unanimously and a copy of resolution 98-40 is on file in the Clerk's Office.
Public Hearing- Comprehensive Plan Amendment CPA 98-2, amends text of plan regarding policies for urban development areas, rural areas, and solid waste disposal:
Mr. McQueen reported that the Planing and Zoning Board has recommended that the Board approve CPA 98-2, which will change the comprehensive plan regarding landfill designations. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to adopt the ordinance. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Durden and unanimously approved. Mr. McQueen stated that this ordinance will not be assigned a number until it is reviewed and returned from the state.
Mr. McQueen announced that he had anticipated that the Planing and Zoning Board would approve the special exception application filed by the Sheriff for the Complex Building to be approved at their last meeting, therefore, a meeting of the Board of Adjustment had been scheduled for this evening. However, the Planing and Zoning Board tabled action, pending further information from the Sheriff, therefore, the Board of Adjustment will not need to convene this evening. Commissioner Durden made a motion to wait until the Planing and Zoning Board makes a recommendation before convening as the Board of Adjustment. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson, and unanimously approved.
Commissioner Durden spoke to the Board about a grader in need of a motor. The quote to replace the motor is $11,975.62. The department is currently short on graders and the need is critical. This will be a new engine and will have a warranty. Commissioner Durden made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson to approve the purchase. The motion passed unanimously.
According to Commissioner Durden it is time to blast the pit in order to dig more rock. It will cost $15,445 to blast again and it will be a larger blasting operation than the last time the pit was blasted. Funds are available to do this work if money is moved within the transportation budget. Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Bush to approve the expense. The motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Suggs stated that she contacted Mr. Mutch about the article that was in the Gilchrist County Journal regarding the radio tower, submitted by Ben Dickerson. Commissioner Suggs asked that the record reflect that she does not have an objection to the tower being redone, however, she is offended by some people thinking that she does not care about the county. Pinnacle Towers applied for the permit for the tower; Pinnacle Broadcast applied for the permit to install the prefab building. She has a problem with the wattage at a 100,000 watts, however, the Board has no control over that issue and she has a problem with the fact that Women in Broadcast was denied a permit by the Board out near Shady Grover and circumvented the system in place and took advantage of the Board and county. Commissioner Durden stated that the county is prohibited from discussing the wattage issue. The tower at the Shady Grove area was denied because of the height.
Commissioner Wilkerson stated that the manager of Otter Springs contacted him and wants to install speed limit signs on the private road leading up to the springs, which is paved. Mr. McQueen suggested that he purchase the signs through Woodland Crafts.
Mr. McQueen reviewed a letter from Jim Martin regarding a potential revenue shortfall for 911 funding and asked the Board to petition the legislative delegation for additional funding.
Mr. Gilliam distributed information to the Board regarding employees who drive county owned vehicles. Davis, Monk & Co. has reviewed the types of uses and has made recommendations. The first category is vehicles used by employees commuting from home to the work site. For this category of use, the Board needs to limit personal use to traveling to and from work and the employee should be receiving a taxable benefit of $3 per day. It is their opinion that this category applies to all employees except three. The second category, emergency vehicles, applies to three employees (i.e. EMS director, EMA Coordinator and EMA assistant coordinator). These vehicles should be clearly marked and are called qualified non personal use vehicles and are not charged the taxable benefits. The third category is vehicles for approved personal use. The Board should set up guidelines to determine what extent the person uses the vehicle, and they would be required to keep a mileage log to document their personal use. The percentage of time the employee uses the vehicle for personal use would be computed on a scale based on the fair market value of the vehicle. At the end of the year, the personal use is included on the employee's W-2 as income. It is Mr. Gilliam's recommendation that a committee be appointed to develop the employee's vehicle use policy. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to appoint Commissioner Durden, Mr. McQueen, Mr. Gilliam, and Mr. Yozgat. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Durden. Mr. Yozgat recommends that the department heads be consulted as to who drives a county vehicle home and a justification as to why that particular employee should be driving a county vehicle home. He also stated that there is an insurance liability concern. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Representative Jane Gayle Boyd has requested the county's legislative issues by September 1st. The Board identified the following issues for legislative consideration: courthouse renovations, jail construction funding, 911 funding, child support mandate-year 2000 compliance, high risk retirement for paramedics, EMT's, and firefighters, and funding for CR 232.
Mr. Gilliam spoke to the Board about some changes which will soon occur in the child support program. New legislation will create a central depository, where all support payments will go and be disbursed. A new change went into effect in July, whereby in cases transferred in from other states, the Clerk's Office will no longer receives any processing fees or clerks fees. By September 1st, the Clerks must sign a cooperative agreement between the Department of Revenue, stating that the fees will be processed in a timely manner and agreeing to other statutory guidelines. There will be some federal funds available, however, they have not determined how the Clerk's will be reimbursed. They are however, certain that the funds will flow to the Board of County Commissioners. Mr. Gilliam would like the fees transferred to his budget to fund the child support clerk. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to return the fees back to the Clerk's Office. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Durden. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Summit Professional Services:
Mr. Mosely reported that the Economic Development grant was denied as the grant application was submitted. It is DCA's opinion that with the closing of the Williston Seed plant and the opening of a plant in Gilchrist County, the project is a relocation, rather than a new or expansion project. They were favorable regarding the Overstreet Mulch portion of the application. Summit has revised the application for Overstreet Mulch and would like the Board's approval to resubmit the application. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson to resubmit the application. Vote of the Board was unanimous
Mr. Mosely reported that grant applications for FERDAP funds are being accepted until 10-16-98. Commissioner Suggs recommends that Waters Lake Park be targeted for those funds. Mr. Mosely stated that the Field of Dreams project needs to be closed out before the county can apply for funding. The grant is for $50,000 with no match. Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Bush to authorize Summit to submit an application for improvements to Waters Lake Park. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Mr. Gilliam reported that funds are needed in the Fine and Forfeiture Fund (about $8000) to pay bills for the balance of the fiscal year. There is currently about $33,000 in general fund reserve. In addition $1864 is needed to fund the mailing of the special assessment notices. Commissioner Suggs reminded the Board that funds are also needed ($3300) to pay for the three new toilets at the county jail. There followed discussion regarding the installation cost of the toilets. Commissioner Durden made a motion to transfer the funds from reserve to cover the above referenced expenditures, plus $300 for the installation cost. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush and unanimously approved.
Mr. McQueen stated that a lady living next to the Philpot Park called and reported there are problems with people staying at the park late at night. She suggested that if the county placed a barricade with a lock she would be glad to lock the park every evening and unlock it each morning. Commissioner Durden stated that the park should be fenced and closed to the public. Commissioner Durden made a motion to cap the well, remove the pump and restrooms, and close the park at night, subject to the county attorney's review. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Suggs and unanimously approved.
The interlocal agreement with Alachua County has been corrected and reviewed by the county attorney. This agreement was previously approved by the Board, subject to the review and corrections.
Mr. McQueen reported that every other year, the county is required by the state to compile a report regarding extremely hazardous substances located in the county. This program is called the threshold planning quantity and is completed by the local planning council, Emergency Management & DCA. In the past, there were three generators of hazardous waste in the county and Emergency Management has completed the work, however, there are now 28 generators. The county has a grant for $8000 to perform the work and he feels it can be performed in house. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve the grant agreement. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson, and unanimously approved.
Wacasassa VFD has requested to purchase new tires for one of their tankers, which was donated by the University of Florida. The total cost will be $3452, which requires full board approval and should be paid from the district wide funds. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve the expenditure. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Durden. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
DEP funds four grants for the county: recycling, small county, litter control, and waste tire. The four total over $130,861. Each year, the funding level has dropped. Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion to apply for these grant. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush and vote of the Board was unanimous.
Commissioner Suggs reported on the DOC inspection at the jail. DOC is going to determine whether they can assist the county with their jail facility. There general opinion was that the jail was not currently sufficient and a plan of action is needed as soon as possible.
Commissioner Suggs made a motion to adjourn at 9:00 p.m. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Durden and unanimously approved.
JIMMIE SHEFFIELD, CHAIR
JOSEPH W. GILLIAM, CLERK