MINUTES OF A REGULAR MEETING OF THE GILCHRIST COUNTY BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS HELD OCTOBER 4, 1999.
The Gilchrist County Board of County Commissioners, in and for Gilchrist County, Florida, convened in a regular meeting on Monday, October 4, 1999, at 9:00 a.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:
Randy Durden, Chair
John Rance Thomas
Sue B. Suggs
Others in attendance were: Joseph W. Gilliam, Clerk of Circuit Court, Sam Mutch, County Attorney, Ron McQueen, EMA/County Coordinator, Sherree Pitzarell, Deputy Clerk, Sheriff David Turner, Jeff Jordan, Warren Emmenecker, Jeff Jordan, Bell VFD, Lee Schaltenbrand, Spring Ridge VFD, Lee Mills, County Engineer
Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion to approve the minutes of the meeting held July 19, 1999. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Suggs and unanimously approved.
Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve the bills. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush and unanimously approved.
Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve the budget entries 99097-99098, 99100, 99102, and 99107-99115. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved.
Mr. Mutch reported that the animal control ordinance is not quite ready for advertising. At the last animal control committee meeting, they agreed to modify section 6, changing the language regarding the issuance of citations by the animal control officer. Mr. Mutch added that they are also checking into a state requirement for the vaccination of ferrets. This ordinance provides an exemption for hunting dogs engaged in hunting. This ordinance also provides for the continuance of an animal control committee, established by resolution. Commissioner Suggs moved to advertised the ordinance for public hearing for October 18th at 6:00 p.m. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved.
Chairman Durden stated that signs have been installed at the county parks and boat ramps, however, there is still a problem with over night parking.
The county has been served with a foreclosure action, whereby Cliff Bradley is the first mortgage holder and the county, through the SHIP program is in second place. The SHIP recipient was David Stickles. The Board discussed the possibility of purchasing the loan from Mr. Bradley (redemption). Mr. Mutch will find out the amount of the pay off.
Mr. Mutch stated the revised Impact Fee ordinance will come into October 1st. There have been a number of people who began the building permit process prior to October 1st, however, they have not completed all requirements to get their permit. In the interim, the Impact Fee ordinance has come into effect and they do not feel they should have to pay the higher rate. Chairman Durden stated there has been a lot of confusion about the impact fee and he recommends that anyone who has applied for their permit prior to October 1st, they should pay the old rate for the impact fee. One factor has been the health department issuing permits for septic tanks. Mr. McQueen stated that the Building Department does not issue a permit until the health department issues a septic tank permit. Following discussion, Commissioner Suggs made a motion to allow people until October 18th to make application to the health department for a septic tank permit and they must have all permits by November 1st to fall under the old rate for impact fees. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush. The motion passed unanimously. The Board agreed to advertise this action in the local paper in order to make the public aware.
In the case of Ginnie Springs vs. Gilchrist County, Ginnie Springs contends that the Board did not follow their pervious ordinance, which is no longer in effect. Judge Beauchamp has ordered each party to prepare a memorandum of law which addresses the arguments. The memorandum must be submitted by October 11, 1999.
Mr. Mutch submitted a draft of the personnel tuition reimbursement policy. Mr. Mutch will add a statement that if the employee leaves county employment within 2 years of course completion, they will reimburse the county for the funds spent on the course and course materials. Mr. Mutch suggests that the employee sign a note agreeing to this requirement. The Board agreed that each request must come before the Board, prior to the employee beginning the course. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve these changes. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and unanimously approved.
The economic development plan needs to be incorporated into the Comprehensive Plan. The North Central Florida Regional Planning Council has not responded to the Board's request.
Mr. Mutch stated he sent a letter to Karen Cranford regarding a fence placed too close to a cul-de-sac used for a school bus turn around. Commissioner Suggs stated her father built the turn around for the school bus 16 years ago. Mr. Mutch would like to see the property.
Mr. Mutch has prepared an amendment to the subdivision regulations, which will require all roads within a subdivision to be paved by the developer. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to send this language to the Planning and Zoning Board for public hearings. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and unanimously approved. This will not apply to minor subdivisions (5 lots or less). The density does not create a problem for minor subdivisions. The motion passed unanimously.
Commissioner Wilkerson made a motion to send proposed language to the Planning and Zoning Board to regulate set back requirements for fences. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Thomas. This will be an amendment to the Land Development Regulations. Commissioner Thomas asked if this applies to a person who is replacing an existing fence that is in bad shape. Mr. Mutch will address this issue with the Planning and Zoning Board. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Commissioner Suggs made a motion, seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson to approve the annexation proposal from the city of Trenton and authorize the chair to sign. Motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Mutch submitted a contract for the purchase of the fire truck by the Town of Bell from the county. This contract was prepared by their attorney. Mr. Gilliam stated that $1250 will be deducted from each of their quarterly reimbursements until the balance is paid. This does not include the $5000 downpayment. Commissioner Suggs moved to approve the contract. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved.
Mr. Mutch has reviewed the auditor's contract and recommends approval. Mr. Gilliam stated the audit review committee met with the auditors to negotiate a fee. The first year's fee will not exceed the fee of the previous year (98-99). The base amount is $37,000 with a flat fee for auditing grants, making the first year contract a total of $43,200. The second year fee will be $44,064 and the third year will be $44,945. Following discussion, Commissioner Wilkerson moved to approve the contract with Davis, Monk & Company. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Suggs and unanimously approved.
Commissioner Suggs reported that the landing zone issue will come before the Board on November 1st for Board approval. According to Commissioner Suggs, the landing zone protocol will be approved by Shandscare and Dr. Cox, prior to presentation to this Board. Jeff Jordan spoke to the Board about a recent incident involving a landing zone issue, when a helicopter was requested and not sent. Lee Schaltenbrand stated that it should not take a tragedy to correct a problem. Mr. Schaltenbrand added that he heard the volunteer fireman requesting a helicopter over the radio and feels one should have been sent. Commissioner Suggs stated she heard the volunteer fireman beg for a helicopter.
Chairman Durden announced that he will not be able to attend the Value Adjustment Board meeting due to a conflict in his schedule. Chairman Durden appointed Commissioner Wilkerson to chair the meeting and appointed Commissioner Bush to be his replacement. Commissioner Thomas will also serve on this Board.
Mr. Gilliam reported that there are end of the year budget adjustments that need to be made by the constitutional officers, as well as the Board's departments. The Sheriff does not have the final figures ready at this time and is not asking for a budget amendment, however, he would like the Board's permission to move some funds from one line item to another. He will be able to provide the Board with the actual figures at the October 18th meeting. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to allow the Sheriff to move funds within his budget to close out the fiscal year. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved.
Mr. Gilliam reported that the final salary figures for the constitutional officers are lower than what was proposed. The Property Appraiser is requesting to move the approximate $1200 into another area of his budget and the other constitutional officers would like to do the same, rather than reducing their approved budgets. Commissioner Thomas moved to approve the request. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush and unanimously approved.
Mr. Gilliam stated an agreement has been signed between the County and GCRA in regards to their FRDAP grant application. GCRA will provide all funds necessary to cover the costs prior to reimbursement. They have agreed to abide by the County's policy for purchasing. If the grant is approved, the funds will become available next year.
The legislative delegation will be here October 28th at the Trenton library from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Any requests for funding needs to be identified prior to that date. Commissioner Suggs stated that she is concerned about a possible bottle neck effect with the four lane project on state road 26 and the legislators need to be aware of the potential for problems.
Mr. Gilliam announced that he has decided to keep the SHIP administration in house with the Clerk's Office. Mr. Gilliam added that the recent audit went well.
Commissioner Suggs spoke to the Board about the bill for the repair and painting of the Wacasassa VFD fire truck. It was understood that initially the paint job would not cost over $2000. Mr. Martin was told that the total cost would be somewhere over $900. N & J contends that the paint job cost over $5000. Mr. Mutch will send the owner of N & J's a letter outlining the Board's understanding of the estimate.
Sheriff Turner submitted a check in the amount of $23,852.71 for housing federal inmates for the quarter ending 9-30-99.
Sheriff Turner submitted information regarding the recently established school safety hotline.
EMS/County Coordinator's Report:
Mr. McQueen submitted information to the Board about the wild fire reimbursement from the Department of Community Affairs. A check in the amount of $59,269 has been received. Of that total $3878 will be paid to the Sheriff to cover his expenses (labor and equipment). In addition, the City of Fanning Springs will receive $5726 and the Town of Bell will receive $6842. The balance of the funds will be distributed to the Board's departments and the district wide fire budget. These funds are unanticipated revenues, which will require a budget amendment. During the Hurricane Floyd evacuation, it was discovered that portable fuel tanks are needed. Mr. McQueen has found two 600 gallon tanks on a mobile system at Starke, and he would like to purchase them if an east cost county (they have first priority) does not purchase them. The Sheriff has agreed to use a portion of his reimbursement for this expense. The cost of the fuel tanks are $3500 each. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve the reimbursements as presented by Mr. McQueen. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush and unanimously approved.
Commissioner's Committee Report:
Chairman Durden read a letter he received from Shirley Frey, on behalf of the Friends of the Library, regarding the appointment of a citizen's member to the Three Rivers Regional Library System. This letter infers that the current citizen representative has served a sufficient period of time and that a new representative be appointed. The Board agreed to review the appointment in December when the committee appointments are made.
Commissioner Suggs reported that the Spring Ridge VFD is progressing with the expansion of their fire station. They are building two additional bays. The department is asking for assistance to complete the renovations, which should total approximately $5000. Mr. Schaltenbrand stated their building could easily be used to house another EMS facility because it will have sleeping quarters and a kitchen. Mr. Schaltenbrand added that they have spent about $10,000 on the construction so far. The funds spent to date are monies raised by various fund raisers sponsored by the fire department. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve an allocation of $5500 from the district wide fire fund. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Thomas. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Commissioner Suggs stated that because of the condition of the Wacasassa Fire Department station, the Board should think about building a new fire station, perhaps using grant funds at the Southeast Community Center. There may be USDA funds available for such a purpose. Commissioner Suggs moved to establish a budget line item of improvements other than buildings in the district wide budget. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
The copier was delivered to the Bell Library from the Department of Agriculture, according to Commissioner Suggs. McCrimmons does not service Lanier products. Ms. Frey called Lanier, and it will cost approximately $700 to have it cleaned and serviced. Their maintenance contract is $1800-$2000 per year. The capability of this machine is more than what the library needs, however, it is Commissioner Suggs understanding that the Chamber is looking for such a machine. Their current machine may be suitable for the library. Chairman Durden stated that Chamber recently signed a contract to purchase a new copier. Following discussion, Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve spending $700 to have the machine cleaned and serviced, moving the funds from the general reserve. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved.
The Board discussed the notice which will be placed in the local paper regarding the extension for applying for building permits under the old impact fee rate.
Commissioner Suggs reported that she received a call from Nell Yelvington. She said that they will be surrendering a half acre of land, which is more than the other residents along that road. She is willing to sign the easement for $400. Chairman Durden would like to table the issue for a couple of weeks.
Commissioner Bush asked if the McDonald's have to clean the property where the Roberts house was moved from. Mr. McQueen stated the McDonald's should have the property cleaned and will make that a stipulation prior to releasing electricity to the house.
The Board recessed for lunch at 11:45 a.m. and reconvened at 1:25 p.m.
Motor Grader Bids:
Mr. Gilliam announced that two bids were received for a new motor grader. The bid request called for a five year lease purchase of a new (2000 year model) motor grader, with a buy back provision. Highland Tractor Company submitted a bid for a John Deere grader and Ring Power submitted a bid for a Caterpillar grader. The cash purchase price quoted by Ring Power is $128,758 and the cash quote from Highland Tractor is $126,500. The bid specs did not specify a trade in and Highland Tractor did not provide one. Ring Power offered one, but it should not be considered since it was not a part of the bid requirements. Highland Tractor guarantees the out of pocket expense for repairs by the County will not exceed $5000 over a five year period of time. Ring Power offers a guaranteed maximum total cost to the county for repairs not to exceed $1500 for five years, up to 7500 machine hours. Highland Tractor will re-purchase their grader for $90,000 at the end of five years and Ring Power will re-purchase their grader for $100,000. The total cost places Ring Power about $11,000 less than Highland Tractor. Commissioner Wilkerson moved to accept the bid submitted by Ring Power. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Commissioner's Committee Reports (cont.):
Chairman Durden reported that all signatures for the right-of-ways on the landfill road have been secured except two. Where the county owns property across from the Yelvington property, the road curves slightly. Chairman Durden asked Mr. Mills, county engineer, if it would be cost effective to straighten the road. Mr. Mills stated that based on the information provided to him, it should not be a problem to straighten the road. The Board will be able to let him know something by the end of this week.
Discussion of Road Maintenance & Improvements:
Mr. Martin reported that 30 loads of material (mostly rock) was placed on CR 232 and used 240 man hours to fill holes and repair drive-ways.
Commissioner Wilkerson reminded the Board that they need to order a dump truck, and the funds are budgeted in the new year budget. Commissioner Wilkerson stated that he and Mr. McQueen are working on a position description for a road superintendent.
Mr. Mills advised the Board that the contracts have been received from DOT for the Small County Road Assistance Program. Chairman Durden asked Mr. Mills if work could begin on CR 236 while the Board is determining what to do on CR 232. Mr. Mills replied that soil borings and data design sheets need to be done prior to bidding the projects. The project will provide re-surfacing for CR 236, however, 30 days must pass after construction before the striping is done. On the east end of CR 232, the worst section is the mix in place area. Mr. Mills recommends that the road be mixed in place with a substantial amount of limerock layered. For a 20 year life expectancy on the east portion of CR 232, it would cost approximately $1,200,000. This price includes widening on each side. Approximately 50% of the cost could be funded with impact fees. The Small County Road Assistance Program will provide $330,000 (which includes engineering) for the east side and $413,000 for the west side of CR 232. CR 236 should be repairable with the funds provided by the state. Commissioner Bush made a motion to rebuild the east side of CR 232, based on the information submitted by the engineer for a twenty year road. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson. The motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Mutch and Mr. Martin went to 7489 N. E. 15th Street to look at a school bus turn around area. The owner, Steven Smith has a contract for deed with the Cranfords. Someone has fenced off the area making the bus turn around difficult. The county owns this easement area by maintenance, according to Mr. Mutch. According to Commissioner Suggs, her aunt and uncle, Linny and Ralph Smith owned the property when the bus turn around was made. Mr. Mutch is sending a letter to the Smith's asking them to remove the fence by the 18th or the county will remove it. A copy of the letter will be hand delivered by the Sheriff to the occupants who are renting the property.
Commissioner Wilkerson spoke to the Board about hiring another person to work in the Road Department. This position would be certified to work inmates. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to advertise and hire a person for the road department to supervise inmates. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson. The Board discussed taking the funds for the clerical position to fund this position, with a starting salary of $14,500. Mr. Mutch stated that he is concerned about the lack of records being kept on county road maintenance. Commissioner Thomas amended the motion to hire the person for $8.56 per hour. Commissioner Wilkerson seconded the amended motion. Vote on the amended motion was as follows:
Vote on the original motion was as follows:
Chairman Durden stated he would like to see a position description for a road superintendent by November 1st. Chairman Wilkerson stated he could have it ready by the October 18th meeting.
Mr. Gilliam stated the Sheriff needs to know when the road department can be moved to the Walker Curve property. Chairman Durden will meet with Lee Mills to work on a set of plans for a new facility. Commissioner Suggs reminded the Board that the Department of Corrections is available for the planning and construction of state/county facilities.
Commissioner Suggs stated that the Levy County Road Department called again about the Shady Grove Road issue. They will provide the equipment and labor and the county's share would cost approximately $15,000. They want Gilchrist County to furnish the lime rock base (6 inches) and pay $15,000 towards the cost of road materials. Commissioner Bush asked how many loads of rock would be required. Mr. McQueen presented a cost break down as follows: $16,420 for asphalt, $840 for sand, $245 for the spreader truck and 6 inches of lime rock. The total length of the project is approximately 3900 feet. Commissioner Suggs may be able to negotiate the cost down to $15,000 plus the cost of lime rock. There are not sufficient funds in the road department budget to cover this expense. Chairman Durden stated that until the cost for CR 232 is determined, the Board should not make a commitment to Levy County. Commissioner Suggs stated she will speak to the Levy County Commissioner and attempt to negotiate the cost. The Board agreed to postpone a decision until the mid month meeting in November.
Total charges year to date since October 1, 1998 is $410,124 and collections total $218,717. These figures may be adjusted once all the September run reports are entered. A total of 1419 runs were entered to date.
Ms. Walker stated that last week two junior varsity football games were held on the same night in Trenton and Bell and a call was received from one of the Trenton coaches wanting to know where the rescue unit was at. According to Ms. Walker, both units were responding to calls. Ms. Walker stated it is her understanding that they are to respond to normal calls, and the availability of an ambulance can not be guaranteed. The Board agreed with Ms. Walker. Commissioner Suggs stated she will attend a school board meeting and advise them that the presence of an ambulance at a sporting event is a courtesy unless they want to pay to have one present.
The Board discussed collections and write-offs and Ms. Walker will meet with Mr. Gilliam to discuss procedure.
Ms. Walker would like to carry forward funds from the old year budget to the new year budget for the lease purchase of an ambulance. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve the carry over of $15,000. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Ms. Walker reported that the EAD grant has been approved, however the funds have not yet arrived. This grant is for the purchase of electronic automatic defibulators and will require a 10% match by the county. Ms. Walker is expecting to be able to purchase at least two of these machines and possibly more.
Ms. Walker spoke to the Board about sending one of her EMT's to paramedic school. The employee is currently attending classes. Commissioner Suggs moved to pay the cost of the school and books for Tom Smith to attend paramedic school, providing that he signs a two year contract to work for Gilchrist County. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Commissioner Bush asked if anyone spoke to Ms. Walker about Dr. Cox and his performance as EMS medical director. Ms. Walker is pleased with Dr. Cox's services. He conducts in-service with the department once a month and is available 24 hours a day. He also oversees the run reports each month and he critiques them, reporting back to Mr. McQueen and Ms. Walker.
Clerk's Report (cont.):
Mr. Gilliam received a letter from Chief Judge Cates requesting that Thomas Norlie be added to the list of the county's conflict attorneys. This does not require Board approval but the Chairman has to sign approving the appointment.
EMA/County Coordinator's Report:
Mr. McQueen presented agreements for the Board's execution for the Small County Road Assistance Program. Commissioner Suggs moved to approve the contracts. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson. The motion passed unanimously. Each agreement requires a separate resolution authorizing the Chairman and Clerk to execute the reimbursement agreement. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to adopt a resolution authorizing the execution of an agreement for the CR 232 project from state road 47 to the Alachua County line. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Bush. Vote of the Board was unanimous. A copy of resolution 99-60 is on file in the Clerk's Office. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to adopt a resolution authorizing the execution of an agreement for the CR 232 project from state road 47 to U. S. 129. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson, and unanimously approved. A copy of resolution 99-61 is on file in the Clerk's Office. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to adopt a resolution authorizing the execution of an agreement for the CR 236 project from U.S. 129 to CR 341. The motion passed unanimously. A copy of resolution 99-62 is on file in the Clerk's Office.
Mr. McQueen distributed the building department report, which indicates a total of 50 permits were issued during the month of September. Permits were issued for 17 new mobile homes and 9 new houses. Twenty-six impact fees were collected during the month of September.
Mr. McQueen met with the Trenton Code Enforcement Board regarding the citation issued on the county's property. The fine is $250 per day. The Code Enforcement Board gave the county 15 days to haul off the junk Mr. McGee placed on the county's property. Mr. Mutch stated the Board can move the items off the property, charging Mr. McGee and place a judgement against his property if he fails to pay the cost of removing the junk. Commissioner Suggs moved to give the property to the city of Trenton. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson. The motion failed by a 4-1 vote with Commissioner Suggs casting the only vote in favor of the motion. The Board discussed the possibility of selling the property, instructing Mr. McQueen to bid the property.
The contract package was rejected by the local union. Mr. McQueen prepared a letter dictated by Mike Grogan, the county's labor attorney and read it to the Board. This action by the union freezes the raises for EMS employees.
The contract between DCA and the County for Mr. McQueen's position has been received and the total allocation has been increased to $105,806. Commissioner Suggs made a motion to approve the contract. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and unanimously approved.
Mr. McQueen thanked the Bell Volunteer Fire Department for their assistance during hurricane Floyd at the evacuation shelter.
In regards to the Bradley/Stickles SHIP foreclosure, the pay off is slightly over $15,141 (to Mr. Bradley). In addition, SHIP funds are owed by the Stickles to the county. The total owed is $32,641. The value of the property is $29,900 and the cost to redeem the property would be $15,000. The appraisal was made prior to improvements to the property. Commissioner Bush made a motion to buy out Mr. Bradley's interest. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Suggs. Vote of the Board was unanimous.
Commissioner Bush reported that Mr. Sifferlin has overspent his budget in salaries for the old fiscal year. Mr. Sifferlin wants to move funds from one line item to salaries. The Board agreed to hold off until the old year bills come in.
There being no further business to discuss, Commissioner Suggs made a motion to adjourn at 4:45 p.m. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Wilkerson and unanimously approved.
RANDY DURDEN, CHAIR
JOSEPH W. GILLIAM, CLERK