KENT COUNTY, MARYLAND
Board of County Commissioners
April 22, 2003
The Honorable Board of County Commissioners met today with the following present: Roy W. Crow, Scott D. Livie, and William W. Pickrum, presiding.
T. Edward Robinson, County Administrator, was also in attendance.
Minutes of the previous meeting were approved.
W. Roger Williams, Treasurer, reported a balance of $ 4,794,850.00.
ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND
Sue Willits, Emergency Planning Coordinator, reported that neutralization of the mustard agent at Aberdeen Proving Ground is scheduled to begin April 23. She advised that the project will ramp up to accommodate an around the clock processing and trucks will transport the agent to Delaware for disposal. Mrs. Willits reported that this project has been planned for many years and is the fruition of many communities' efforts.
BAYSIDE PUBLIC LANDING AND PARK
Carter Stanton, Director, Public Works, reported that the concrete slab at the top of the boat launching ramp at Bayside Landing and Park has been poured and will be open on April 24.
Mr. Stanton reported that at the April 14 meeting, the Public Landing and Facilities Board approved the use of the Bayside Public Landing and Park for the Maryland Watermen's Association Fishing Tournament on June 13 -15. The Commissioners concurred.
BETTERTON VOLUNTEER FIRE COMPANY
Request was received from the Betterton Volunteer Fire Company to initiate proceedings to finance a new 2003 Sparton Pumper Truck in the amount of $248,000 with tax exempt status. The Commissioners approved the request and a public hearing will be scheduled once agreement has been provided in compliance to Internal Revenue Services provisions.
BOARD OF EDUCATION
Correspondence was received from Frances Miller, Assistant Superintendent of Administrative Services, advising that the Board of Education approve the administrations's request for Budget Adjustment #6 relating to changes to the current expense; unrestricted budget. Discrepancies were found in request for Budget Adjustment # 5 and revisions are to be provided. These provisions will also affect budgetary figures in Budget Adjustment #6, therefore, discussion on this request will be tabled.
The Commissioners received correspondence from Eric and Leslie Miller, Galena, advising of the positive influence the Millington Elementary School teachers have made with their two children resulting in advancement of their reading and overall work skills. Mrs. Miller requested the long term results of the learning skills taught at Millington Elementary School when considering the Board of Education budget.
BOARD OF ELECTION SUPERVISORS
In follow-up to last week's meeting, the proposed lease agreement for office space for the Board of Election Supervisors was again reviewed. Lease options for 2 years, 3 years and 5 years were proposed as well as a subletting clause. As recommended by Mr. Wright, Chairman of the Board of Election Supervisors, the Commissioners approved and Commissioner Pickrum signed a five year lease agreement with KRM Development Corporation for office space at 135 Dixon Drive as amended.
At 1:00 p.m., the Commissioners held a budget work session with Wayne Morris, Director, Department of Water and Wastewater Services. The County Administrator and the Budget and Accounting Director were also in attendance.
The Commissioners agreed to meet with representative of Financial Management Services relating to a feasibility study for public service rates.
DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES
In follow-up from March 18, the Commissioners approved and Commissioner Pickrum executed a contract modification agreement by and between the Commissioners and Community Services Administration, Department of Human Resources, modifying The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), contract for Kent County to include an additional $1000.00 for procuring a photocopier needed to facilitate the distribution of foods. This program is administered by the Kent County Department of Social Services.
DEPARTMENT OF WATER AND WASTEWATER SERVICES
Wayne Morris, Director, Department of Water and Wastewater Services, appeared to report on the following issues:
Piney Neck/Skinners Neck/Wesley Chapel - The Commissioners approved and executed a Public Works Agreement for Ronald and Diana Higgins for their property located by Tax Map 51, Parcel 122.
Allen's Lane - Mr. Morris advised that he had discussed the request from Allen's Lane residents for wastewater services with the Rock Hall Town Manager and will be attending a meeting on May 9 to discuss funding options. He reiterated the need for supporting documentation from the Health Department as funding most likely will be based on failing septic systems resulting in a health hazard.
Quaker Neck Service Area - In follow-up to Maryland Department of the Environment letter of March 20 denying the Water and Sewer Plan Amendment, Mr. Morris met with State representatives. Discussion was held as to the options, such as partnering with Mr. Lawrence, to proceed with the proposed expansion of the sewer service area in Quaker Neck. Mr. Morris advised that if partnership with Mr. Lawrence was initiated with the County, the County would be responsible for operating and maintaining the treatment plant.
Kennedyville Service Area - Mr. Morris reported that the Kennedyville pumping station had an overflow due to equipment malfunction. He noted that thirteen pumps were not part of the SCADA alarm system. He advised of a product that would monitor the pumping station via upper cell phone bandwidth. Mr. Morris reported the system cost was $895 per pump station with a $22 monthly monitoring fee. Mr. Morris requested approval of a 60 day trial of the product. The Commissioners concurred.
In response to Memo dated February 13 from Warden Ronald Howell requesting approval for purchase of 2003 Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor, the Commissioners agreed to request Warden Howell to seek availability and costs of an used vehicle due to budget restraints. Jim Wright, Purchasing Coordinator, will be requested to follow up on this request and report back to the Commissioners.
The Commissioners received a copy of correspondence from Robert Rust, Director, Emergency Management, directed to Gregg Clanton, Galena, requesting approval to place an antenna atop the grain tower in order to expand the public safety radio system coverage in the Massey/Golts area.
Ed Birkmire, Chairman, Local Emergency Planning Committee, Robert Rust, Director, Emergency Management and Sue Willits, Emergency Planning Coordinator, appeared to present the Guide to Terrorism Preparedness for Kent County. Mr. Birkmire advised that the guide was an effort of many County agencies as well as local businesses. He reported of a public meeting scheduled for May 5 at 7:00 p.m. in the Commissioners' hearing room. Mr. Birkmire noted that the County has had a plan in place and is confident that the County can address all emergency issues. He advised that the Kent News will be distributing the guide with the upcoming newspaper delivery and volunteers will be distributing the guide to businesses and public areas. Mrs. Willits stated that the brochure enforces methods to be informed should an emergency arise such as the three minute steady tone indicating the need to tune into the local radio stations WCTR and WKHS. The Commissioners thanked the Mr. Birkmire, Mr. Rust and Mrs. Willits for their efforts.
John Hall, Extension Office Director, Elizabeth Hill, Faculty Assistant, 4-H and Youth, and Jean Austin, Family and Consumer Science Educator, appeared to discuss the FY 04 budget.
Mrs. Austin and Mrs. Hill provided documentation describing Kent County Extension Program Highlights. Mrs. Austin provided an update and shared the successes of the Diet, Health, and Food, Family Finance and Child Care Providers programs. She advised of goals to train volunteers to provide mentoring roles for basic financial skills. Mrs. Austin provided a 5 minute financial checkup used in her programs. Commissioner Livie inquired as to programs targeting the high school students to promote financial literacy. She stated that no programs were available at this time. Mr. Hall noted that Mrs. Austin has ties with the University of Maryland which provides accessible data and programs.
Commissioner Pickrum inquired as to the impact of the Tyson processing plant closing. Mr. Hall advised that some poultry processing is moving to South America. Commissioner Pickrum inquired if any action was required to encourage retaining the processing here. Mr. Hall advised that most agricultural processing was done in the mid-west, not locally.
Mrs. Hill provided an update on 4-H programs and youth development. She described programs such as Youth Safety and Basic Finance.
Mr. Hall stated that the budget did not include any increases and requested the same level of funding. Mrs.Merritt inquired as to any additional impact by the State. Mr. Hall reported he anticipated a 5% decrease in funding from the State. The Commissioners thanked Mr. Hall, Mrs. Austin and Mrs. Hill for the update.
GALENA VOLUNTEER FIRE COMPANY
In response to the Commissioners' letter of support for the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program application submitted by the Galena Volunteer Fire Company, correspondence was received from R. David Paulison, U.S. Fire Administrator, advising that all decisions for applications will take place by June 4, 2004.
The Commissioners received electronic mail from Kathy Edler requesting the Commissioners to use another health insurance carrier than Local Government Insurance Trust (LGIT).
The Commissioners receive correspondence from Edward Norris, Colonel, Maryland State Police, and Bruce Tuxill, Major General, The Adjutant General, advising that all requests for Homeland Security should be submitted to the Maryland Emergency Management Agency and although requests exceed funding, every effort will be made to accommodate the request.
At 10:35 a.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Livie, seconded by Commissioner Crow and made unanimous by Commissioner Pickrum to go into executive session with M. Susanne Hayman, County Attorney, for legal counsel in accordance with State Government Article, Section 10.508 of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
Items of discussion included litigation and legislation.
The executive session adjourned at 10:55 a.m.
The Commissioners received a copy of correspondence from Robert Rust, Director, Emergency Management, directed to Governor Robert Ehrlich, Jr., supporting HB 780 and
SB 549 that will provide financial assistance for essential 9-1-1 services.
At 11:30 a.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Livie, seconded by Commissioner Crow and made unanimous by Commissioner Pickrum to go into executive session to discuss potential litigation in accordance with State Government Article, Section 10.508 of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
The executive session adjourned at 11:35 a.m.
LOCAL MANAGEMENT BOARD
In follow-up from March 4, the Commissioners received a response from Norman Conway, Vice Chairman, Committee on Appropriations, replying to funding concerns relating to the Local Management Board stating that Local Management Board funding was cut approximately $4 Million, or a 10% cut to every jurisdiction.
At 11:05 a.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Crow, seconded by Commissioner Livie and made unanimous by Commissioner Pickrum to go into executive session to discuss personnel matters in accordance with State Government Article, Section 10.508 of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
The executive session adjourned at 11:30 a.m.
At 1:30 p.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Crow, seconded by Commissioner Livie and made unanimous by Commissioner Pickrum to go into executive session to discuss personnel matters in accordance with State Government Article, Section 10.508 of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
The executive session adjourned 1:45 p.m.
PROGRAM OPEN SPACE
The Commissioners received correspondence from James W. Price, Director, Program Open Space, (POS) relating to unencumbered funds remaining in the following projects: Worton Park Playground ($4.50); Toal Park Phase II (1,034.38); and Millington Pool-Drain Project ($1,080). These funds will be reverted to the County's POS general fund for either acquisition or development.
PUBLIC WORKS COMPLEX
In response to Commissioner Crow's inquiry relating to landscaping at the Public Works Complex, Carter Stanton, Director, Public Works, forwarded a landscape plan as suggested by the University of Maryland.
QUAKER NECK PUBLIC LANDING
Mr. Stanton reported that at the April 14 Public Landing and Facilities Board approved for the slips at Quaker Neck Public Landing to deepened using grant funding previously approved. The Commissioners concurred.
In response to Commissioner Crow's inquiry as to placing a "No Wake " sign on the Sassafras River, near Turners Creek, Carter Stanton, Director, Public Works, reported that homeowners must request the sign in writing.
SHARP STREET PUBLIC LANDING
Mr. Stanton reported that at the April 14 Public Landing and Facilities Board approved the re-deck some of the timber on the Sharp Street Pier. Mr. Stanton advised that the project was grant funded.
The Commissioners reviewed Memorandum dated February 14 from Sheriff John Price requesting approval to purchase three new parole cars in the Fiscal Year 2004 budget. Due to budget restraints, the Commissioners approved to purchase two of the three vehicles requested by Sheriff Price to be funded in Fiscal Year 2004 budget.
Correspondence was received from Heidi L. Manning, Chestertown, inquiring to purchase property identified on Map 36, parcel 70 located on Bayshore Road that was acquired by the County through tax sale. Additional information will be provided to the Board before any action is taken.
The Commissioners received correspondence from Hannah Lee Byron, Director, Maryland Office of Tourism Development, requesting a letter of support for a grant application to Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network to print a brochure that would include Kent County sites but focuses on Fort McHenry historical data relating to the Star Spangled Banner and the War of 1812. A copy of this correspondence was forwarded to Bernadette Van Pelt, Tourism Director.
U.S. COAST GUARD STATION
Jeff Troester, Director, Parks and Recreation, appeared to discuss the Still Pond U.S. Coast Guard Station identified as surplus property. Mr. Troester forwarded correspondence from William Huie, Program Manager, Federal Lands to Parks , Southeast Region, National Parks Service, advising that the application for conveyance of the U.S. Coast Guard Station had been approved and Kent County is requested to take possession within fifteen days. The Commissioners approved Mr. Troester assuming custody on behalf of the County for documentation purposes. He noted that Echo Hill Outdoor School uses the portable pier and requested approval to draft an agreement for Echo Hill to continue using the pier for the season. The Commissioners concurred. Mr. Troester advised that notification will be made to the Sheriff's Office and Local Government Insurance Trust as the County will now be liable and responsible for the property.
WATERSHED RESTORATION ACTION STRATEGIES
The Commissioners received correspondence from C. Ronald Franks, Secretary, Department of Natural Resources, inviting participation in the Department of Natural Resource's Watershed Restoration Action Strategy (WRAS). A copy of this information was forwarded to Gail Owings, Director, Planning and Zoning Administration, for her attention.
WORKFORCE INVESTMENT BOARD
The Commissioners appointed Beverly A. Churchill for a three year term beginning July 1 and Errol D. Alexander, PhD to fill an unexpired term ending June 30, 2005 as members of the Workforce Investment Board.
There being no further business to claim their attention, the Board adjourned to meet again on Tuesday, April 29, 2003.
Please contact Joyce Laskey or Janice Fletcher at (410) 778-7435 or by e-mail with any questions or comments.