Kent County County Commissioners met October 16.
Kent County County Commissioners met October 16.
Here is the minutes provided by the commissioners:
A meeting of the County Commissioners of Kent County was called to order at 6:00 p.m. with the following present: William W. Pickrum, presiding, Ronald H. Fithian, and William A. Short. The meeting convened with the Pledge of Allegiance. Commissioner Pickrum asked the audience to remain standing for a moment of silence for those who have lost their lives due to a recent accident in Cecil County and for those who have lost their lives due to Hurricane Michael.
Shelley L. Heller, County Administrator, and Thomas N. Yeager, County Attorney, were also in attendance.
Correspondence dated October 12, 2018, addressed to the Commissioners from Amy Moredock, Director, Planning, Housing, and Zoning. The letter notified the Commissioners of a Planning Commission meeting scheduled for November 1, 2018. There will be a site plan review for #18-58 Morgan Creek Land Holdings, LLC, Election District 2, map 28, Parcel 1.
Correspondence dated September 28, 2018, addressed to Commissioner Pickrum, from Grenville Whitman, Rock Hall resident, regarding the County's FY2019 budget specifically $8,000.00 allocated to the Waterman's Association and $9,000,00 allocated to the Clean Chesapeake Coalition. To clarify Mr. Whitman's inquiry the Board and Ms. Heller explained the budget process.
Correspondence dated October 4, 2018, addressed to the County Commissioners, from The Officers and Members of the Rock Hall Volunteer Fire Company, thanked the Commissioners for providing funding to the fire company. The funding will support training, equipment, tools, and staffing.
On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the regular session minutes from the October 16th meeting.
On motion by Commissioner Fithian and seconded by Commissioner Short, the Commissioners unanimously approved the following:
Chestertown Rotary Club, Raffle Only, October 20, 2018
Betterton Still Pond Lions Club, Combination Multiple Gaming Device Raffle, November 3, 2018
Eastern Shore Rabbit Rescue and Education Center, Raffle Only, November 3, 2018
Kent County Public Schools:
Dr. Karen Couch, Superintendent, and Jane Towers, Supervisor of Finance, Kent County Public Schools (KCPS), were present to discuss several matters. Wendy Costa, Member, and Joe Goetz, Member, Board of Education (BOE) were also present.
Dr. Couch and Ms. Towers submitted the Board of Education of Kent County, Maryland Audited Financial Statements FY2018 for approval. Ms. Towers reviewed the FY2018 Assets, Liabilities, and Fund Balances budget. The Commissioners discussed areas of the financial statements. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the FY2018 Audited Financial Statements as submitted.
Dr. Couch and Ms. Towers submitted the BOE FY2019 Final Budget for KCPS for approval. Dr. Couch noted several savings under the new budget. The Commissioners discussed areas of the budget. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the Budget for FY2019 as submitted.
Dr. Couch submitted an Unrestricted Budget Amendment #1 FY2019 for approval. Dr. Couch explained the reason for the unrestricted fund is to move $62,275.00 from fund balance to Maintenance for facility repairs in the amount of $47,275.00, and to Instructional Supply for textbooks in the amount of $15,000.00. On motion by Commissioner Fithian and seconded by Commissioner Short, the Commissioners unanimously approved the Unrestricted Budget Amendment #1 FY2019 as submitted.
October 21-27, 2018 is Economic Development Week. Commissioner Fithian read the Proclamation. Jamie Williams, Director, and Emily McCoy, Administrative Assistant, Economic Development; Susan O'Neill, Executive Director, and Janice Palmer, Executive Assistance, Upper Shore Regional Council, were recognized as active members of the Maryland Economic Development Association (MEDA). The Economic Development office and Upper Shore Regional Council are important components of the State's economic success. MEDA is a non-profit organization whose mission is to enhance the knowledge and skills of its members, and to encourage partnerships and networking among people committed to bringing jobs and capital to Maryland.
Commissioner Pickrum commended Ms. Williams on the contents assembled on the Economic Development web page. Commissioner Pickrum also stated that the County website encompasses a plethora amount of information about Kent County. Commissioner Short noted the outreach efforts of Ms. Williams and her staff. The Department shares information to keep citizens abreast of new and upcoming information in the County on multiple social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Jamie Williams, Director, Economic Development, presented a correspondence dated September 6, 2018, from Charlotte Davis, Executive Director, Rural Maryland Council, indicating an approved grant application for $200,000.00 for the Chestertown Business Campus, along with a Grant Agreement for Disbursement of FY 2019 Rural Maryland Prosperity Investment Fund (RMPIF) Awards. The grant will be used for the roads associated with the new Dixon Headquarters building. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the RMPIF FY2019 Grant Agreement.
Office Of Finance:
Patricia Merritt, Chief Financial Officer, Office of Finance, presented the FY2018 Amended Budget. Ms. Merritt abridged the document and explained that it reflects the budget adjustments made throughout the fiscal year. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the FY2018 Budget
Amended Budget as presented and signed Resolution 2018-8 Adoption of FY2018 Budget Amendment.
Planning, Housing, And Zoning:
Amy Moredock, Director, Planning, Housing, and Zoning reviewed a 2011 Kent County Deferred Payment Loan Program, Housing Rehabilitation Mortgage Agreement between joint mortgagees, and The Board of County Commissioners for Kent County. Mr. Yeager reviewed the lien and determined it meets the requirements for release. A Certificate of Satisfaction was presented. On motion by Commissioner Fithian and seconded by Commissioner Short, the Commissioners unanimously approved the Certificate of Satisfaction.
Ms. Moredock presented a correspondence dated September 10, 2018, from Elizabeth Morris, Chairman, Kent County Planning Commission, addressed to Commissioner Pickrum. The Planning Commission adopted the 2017 Annual Report to the Maryland Department of Planning. Ms. Moredock reviewed the 2017 Annual Report to the Commissioners highlighting on, there has been an increase in single family dwelling permits, there has not been much activity on subdivision applications, however there is an increase for large accessory bu have been several site plan approvals namely: CreaFill, Massey Air Museum, Chestertown Animal Hospital, Tolchester Marina and Willards Agri Service. Ms. Moredock commended the Planning, Housing, and Zoning staff for the extra hours worked to support the department due to the vacancy of a community planner.
Mr. Wayne Darrell, Director, Emergency Services, presented a Contract No. MD. DOIT PBXIII CONTRACT-BPO 060B1400048, with Carousel Industries for the proposed VESTA 91-1 Hardware Refresh and VESTA SMS in the amount of $740,493.93. This system will replace the 911 telephone system at the County's primary and back-up 911 centers. The current system is contracted with Verizon and will expire in February 2019. The proposed telephone system will be an upgrade to the current system. The upgrade will be a five-year contract and prepare the 911 center for SMS (text) and Next Generation 911 core services. Mr. Darrell will work closely with the Emergency Numbers Systems Board to secure funding, On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the Contract with Carousel Industries in the amount of $740,493.93 as submitted.
Mr. Darrell presented a 2018 State Homeland Security Grant from Maryland Emergency Management Agency Grants Management System (MEMAGMS) in the amount of $76,333.84. The grant was approved for $20,314.60 for law enforcement and $56,019.24 for the Emergency Management Planner salary and benefits cost. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the 2018 State Homeland Security MEMAGMS Award No. 18-SR8851-02 as submitted.
Mr. Darrell presented a 2018 Emergency Management Performance Grant for $67,944.42 from the Maryland Emergency Management Agency. This is an annual grant that historically supplements salary and benefits cost of the County Emergency Management Director and Communications Chief positions. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the Subrecipient Agreement for the 2018 Emergency Management Performance Grant MEMAGMS Award No. 18-SR685101 in the amount of $67,944.42 as submitted.
Mr. Darrell provided the Commissioners with a staffing update for the Office of Emergency Services. Mr. Darrell indicated the three EMT-Basics are hired and will be a great improvement to the fire departments of Kent County, Commissioner Fithian made mention of the thank you letter submitted from the Rock Hall Fire Company. Mr. Darrell reported the new paramedic will begin their position on November 2, 2018. Mr. Darrell briefly reviewed the back-up 911 center and cooperative efforts with Queen Anne's County.
Michael Moulds, Director, Public Works, submitted a recommendation for the Kent County Detention Center Fuel Oil Pumping System Modification Bid. The project was advertised, and two bids were received. The bid was awarded to Joseph T. Richardson Inc. for the bid amount of $59,000.00. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the contract, including bid alternate #2, not to exceed $59,000.00
Mr. Moulds presented an agreement for renewal for the Worton Spray Irrigation Field. The current agreement will expire on January 1, 2019. The property is under an agricultural conservation easement. The proposed agreement includes an increase in the annual license fee of $3,000.00 in exchange for the Owner being responsible for the annual planting of cover crops to allow more flexibility in use of the spray fields throughout the year. The agreement for use of the spray irrigation fields for an additional five years to January 1, 2024 for an annual license fee of $13,000.00. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the five-year Extension Agreement for the Worton Spray Irrigation Fields with Franklin Dill and the Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation.
Mr. Moulds stated funding in FY2018 was approved for the purchase of a replacement utility vehicle for the water and sewer division. A purchase order was awarded to Hertrich Fleet Services Inc. for a 2018 Ford 350. Due to delivery delays and a change in the model year production, the procurement process ceased. The FY2018 funding reverted to the general funds. Being that the vehicle is scheduled for delivery, Mr. Moulds request that funds be transferred to the department from the general fund balance in the amount of $44,987.00. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved a general fund balance transfer in the amount of $44,987.00 to purchase a replacement utility truck for the Water and Sewer Division that could not be completed in FY2018 due to manufacturing delays.
Mr. Moulds reported that a Noxious Weed funding from the State of Maryland that was previously approved for $50,000.00 by Letter of Agreement PO1848 C-1, has now been increased to $60,000.00. Mr. Moulds signed the Amended Funding Agreement to increase funding. Commissioner Short stated the County has a great partnership with the State and due to the wet weather, it has been difficult to get out and spray. Commissioner Short questioned Mr. Moulds on organic herbicides as an alternate weed killer source. Mr. Moulds stated he would research the inquiry.
Commissioner Short stated he had several citizens approach him regarding the Fairlee project funding. At a previous meeting the Commissioners moved funds that was allocated for a project in Fairlee to an upcoming project in Millington. Commissioner Short wanted to clarify that the County does have the money to fund both projects, they just made the decision to reallocate the funds already approved from one project to another. The Fairlee project is still scheduled to happen, however, it has been decided that an engineer's perspective is needed for the project and that has put a halt to that project.
Marty Hale, Director, Human Resources, presented a recommendation to hire an individual for a Fall Program position in the Department of Parks and Recreation. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the hiring of the recommended individual, pending successful completion of County pre-employment requirements.
Mr. Hale summarize a request to correct to a position classification and salaries for the Office of Emergency Services. The FY2019 budget included three new EMT-Basic positions. It was initially categorized as a Grade 3 on the County position scale, however, when the job specifications were completed and evaluated, it was determined that the position should be a Grade 4. Mr. Hale recommends the salaries of the three hired EMT-B's be modified to a Grade 4. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the base grade change from a Grade 3 to a Grade 4 for the recently hired EMT-B positions. There is no negative fiscal impact because of the correction.
Shelley Heller, County Administrator, on behalf of Rosemary Ramsey Granillo, Director, Kent County Local Management Board (KCLMB), stated there is a member vacancy on the board of the KCLMB and a recommended candidate to fill the vacancy. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Pickrum, the Commissioners unanimously approved the appointment of Teverly Swinson as a member of the KCLMB, to filling an unexpired term ending October 31, 2020.
Ms. Heller presented two letters of support for small-grant applications for Kent Conservation and Preservation Alliance (KCPA). The support letters are addressed to Gail Owings, Executive Director, Eastern Shore Heritage Inc., and W.W. "Buck" Duncan, President, Mid-Shore Community Foundation Inc. On motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by
Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved the letters of support as presented.
Janet Christensen-Lewis, KCPA President, thanked the Commissioners for their support.
County Administrator Report:
Ms. Heller announced an upcoming Trunk or Treating event at Kent County Department of Social Services, on High Street, on October 315, from 4:00-5:00p.m.
Ms. Heller announced that there are two screenings of "Kissed By God". The first screening will be at Washington College on October 18th at 7:00 p.m. and the second screening is on October 25th at 7:00 p.m. at Kent County High School.
Ms. Heller reviewed a correspondence on behalf of the Commissioners dated October 2, 2018 addressed to M.J. Egbebadia, PMP, Maryland Department of the Environment, regarding the Sewage Sludge Utilization Permit Application, from Kennedyville to Betterton Wastewater Treatment Plant.
Ms. Heller presented a correspondence dated October 1, 2018, addressed to Commissioner Pickrum, from Cindy Stone, Director, Office of Community Programs, Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development. The letter confirms payment receipt for Housing Improvement Program (HIP) loans settled, repayment was for grants from Federal fiscal years 2007, 2009 and 2011 used by Kent County for the housing rehabilitation program.
Ms. Heller presented a correspondence dated October 10, 2018, addressed to Commissioner Pickrum, from Robert R. Neall, Secretary, Maryland Department of Health, thanking the Commissioners for their nomination of William Webb to serve as the Health Officer for Kent County Health Department.
Closed Session, Legal:
At 8:16 p.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Short, seconded by Commissioner Fithian, and carried unanimously to go into closed session to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter, and to consult with staff, consultants, or other individuals about pending or potential litigation in accordance with General Provisions Article, Section 83-305 (b) (7) (8) of the Annotated Code of Maryland, respectively.
Shelley L. Heller, County Administrator, Thomas N. Yeager, County Attorney; Michael Moulds, Director, Public Works; Lee Myers, Assistant Director, Human Resources; Sondra M. Blackiston, Clerk; and Sallie Henckel, Deputy Clerk were also in attendance.
Topic to be discussed: Legal advice on a legal matter; pending or potential litigation.
Reasons for closing: Legal advice from Counsel is confidential; matters related to pending or potential litigation are confidential.
At 9:02 p.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Short, seconded by Commissioner Fithian, and carried unanimously to adjourn the closed session and reconvene in open session.
The Commissioners abbreviated a discussion relative to pending or protentional litigation and on motion by Commissioner Short and seconded by Commissioner Fithian, the Commissioners unanimously approved to proceed with staff recommendations.
The Commissioners abbreviated a discussion relative to legal advice from Mr. Yeager. The Commissioners advised Mr. Yeager and Ms. Heller to report back with more information.
There being no further business to claim their attention, a motion was made by Commissioner Short, seconded by Commissioner Fithian, and the Board unanimously agreed to adjourn the meeting at 9:04 p.m. and agreed to meet again on Tuesday, October 30, 2018, at 6:00 p.m.