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County Commission Minutes 12/12/01

A regular meeting of the County of Dukes County Commissioners was held on Wednesday, December 12, 2001, at 7:30 p.m. in the Conference Room of the County Administration Building, notice of such meeting having been posted as required by law.

Commissioners Present:  Leslie H. Leland, Chairman
                                Daniel Flynn    
                                Leonard Jason, Jr.
                                Robert Sawyer
                                John Alley
        E. B. Collins

        Absent:         Roger Wey
Also Present:  Carol Borer, County Manager      
                  Marsha Smolev, Executive Assistant    
                  Sheriff McCormack
                  Cynthia Mitchell, Health Council
                  Pat Fairchild, John Snow, Inc.
                  Nancy Kasen, John Snow, Inc.
 Joshua Sabatini, MV Gazette
Chairman Leland called the meeting to order at 7:37 p.m.

Commissioner Collins Moved that the Minutes of November 14, 2001
be approved.  Commissioner Alley Seconded the Motion. The Minutes were approved as written. Commissioner Flynn abstained.

Cynthia Mitchell was asked to introduce Pat Fairchild and Nancy Kasen.  She explained that they were working with the Health Council to develop the Island Health Plan. Nancy Kasen reviewed the three parts of the Health Plan: the feasibility study that was completed in October 1999; the business plan; implementation.  She reported that she met with stakeholders in each of the following categories: physicians, employers, and brokers and agents.  

Ms. Kasen reported that the13 physicians with whom she met were supportive of the Island Health Plan.  They believed it would facilitate more appropriate health care and that the care will happen sooner.  They voiced concern about more administrative overhead and remuneration.  

Brokers and agents, Ms. Kasen reported, also supported the Plan.  Key informant interviews took place with seven employers, three large and four small.  All of them voiced a moral obligation to offer health insurance and did so.  

Ms. Kasen went through the written report that was distributed.  It was mentioned that there are two possible health partners: Blue Cross/Blue Shield, and Neighborhood Health Plan.  The Health Council is focusing on choosing the health partner.  Commissioner Sawyer voiced concern about how to include seasonal workers.  There was discussion about this and the way the partnership would ‘flip’ people on Mass Health onto the Island Plan. Ms. Kasen explained the idea of ‘conversion,’ ‘rolling’ people out of an indemnity plan into a managed care product. Commissioner Flynn asked about people who use providers off-island.  Ms. Kasen said the Plan is not restricted to a local network.  Discussion continued.  Chairman Leland was concerned that not enough employers were interviewed.  Commissioner Sawyer said the numbers would grow.  Commissioner Collins suggested that a broader base would bring greater success.  

(Commissioner Jason arrived at 8:18 PM.)

Commissioner Collins asked if there was anything the presenters needed from the County Commissioners.  Pat Fairchild said they needed to keep going.  Mrs. Borer commended the Health Council for bringing the concept of the Health Plan to the forefront and asked that the County Commissioners be kept up to date.

Chairman Leland asked for a motion to appoint Burnet Sumner to the Dukes County Regional Housing Authority as they recommended.  

        Commissioner Collins Moved that Burnet Sumner be appointed to the
DCRHA. Commissioner Sawyer Seconded the Motion.  The Vote to appoint
Ms. Sumner was Unanimous.  

Mrs. Borer noted a memo that she included in the County Commissioners’ packages that explained the opinion by Joseph Sollitto Jr., County Clerk, stating that the Chronic Illness Network had to be appointed by the County Commissioners.

        Commissioner Collins Moved that the 23 people on the list be appointed
        to the Board of the Chronic Illness Network.  Commissioner Sawyer
        Seconded the Motion.  The Vote to appoint was Unanimous.

County Rodent Control Officer, TJ Hegarty, presented his report after distributing a handout about the Norway rat. The Sheriff thanked him for tackling the rodent problem under the County Jail. Commissioner Jason asked if any of the rats were found to be diseased.  Mr. Hegarty answered, ‘not yet.’

The County Manager began her report by recommending to the County Commissioners that they pass a 3.5% COLA for County employees.  The average COLA in the towns is 3.8%.  

        Commissioner Jason Moved that the Commissioners grant the employees
        A COLA of 3.5% as recommended by the County Manager, retroactive to
        July 1, 2001.  Commissioner Sawyer Seconded the Motion.  The vote
        Passed Unanimously.

The County Manager continued with the Revenue Report.  She mentioned that she will be working on coordinating renovations to the County Courtroom, including, painting, carpeting, and possibly even the woodwork.  The County Treasurer reviewed some lines in the Revenue Report explaining that revenues listed as under 58% were good, meaning more than half of each of those line item revenues had been met.  Commissioner Sawyer noted that Cape and Island License Plate revenues were down.  

Mrs. Borer mentioned that David Dube left Powers and Sullivan, the firm conducting our audit.  The audit is under way, but the supplemental budget will probably not take place until late January, because the audit is not yet complete.

Chairman Leland had no report.  Commissioner Sawyer reported that following a responsive report, the Emergency Medical Services Procurement Committee voted unanimously to pay the first quarter funds to the Hospital, as stipulated in the Contract. He noted that the Hospital’s cooperation has been excellent.

The Sheriff reported that he attended a Master Plan presentation at the Airport and was asked whether he intended to lease or purchase property in the Northeast Quadrant for the new Jail. The Sheriff responded neither, since it was County property.  He asked the County Commissioners where they stood on this issue, since it would have an impact on funding the project.  Commissioner Alley referred to discounted rates for community service, since the Jail would be for the good of the community.  Commissioner Sawyer voiced concern about the issue of the County having to pay to use land it owns.  Commissioner Alley said each parcel has a fair market value.  Commissioner Sawyer asked if there could be no charge and Commissioner Alley answered yes.  Mrs. Borer questioned the concept of the Sheriff purchasing land the County owned.  The Sheriff asked the County Commissioners for clarification.  Commissioner Collins asked who would eventually make the determination.  Commissioner Jason said a judge, if we cannot resolve it.  

Commissioner Jason Moved that the meeting adjourn.  Commissioner
Sawyer Seconded the Motion.  The meeting adjourned at 9:02 PM.

Complete text of meeting is available on tape at the County Commissioner’s office.


The County of Dukes County PO Box 190, Edgartown, MA 02539
Phone: 508.696.3840    Fax: 508.696.3841
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