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County Commission Minutes 08/14/02

A regular meeting of the County of Dukes County Commissioners was held on Wednesday, August 14, 2002 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
                                Robert Sawyer
                                E. B. Collins
                                Leonard Jason, Jr.
Absent:                 Daniel Flynn
                                John Alley
Roger Wey

Also Present:           Carol Borer, County Manager     
                                Marsha Smolev, Executive Assistant      
                                Noreen Flanders, County Treasurer               
                                Joseph Sollitto, Clerk of the Courts (7:55 PM)                          
Chairman Leland called the meeting to order at 7:36 PM.

Commissioner Collins Moved that the Minutes of the Meeting of
July 24, 2002 be approved as written.   Commissioner Sawyer Seconded the Motion.  The Minutes were approved.  Commissioner Jason Abstained.  

The County Manager reported that a Union Contract had been agreed upon at the last mediation session.  Mrs. Borer asked the County Commissioners if they wanted to authorize her to sign it once it was ratified.  She noted that neither she nor Commissioner Collins had been able to attend the meeting, but Mr. Michael Gilman, Counsel, had represented the County.  Attorney Gilman refused to sign a document presented to him that asked the County, in effect, to relinquish authority over the Airport to the Airport Commission.  Commissioner Jason noted that the Airport documents named a Sally Adams and asked who she was.  Mrs. Borer explained that the Airport had hired Attorney Adams to represent the Airport Commission.  Commissioner Sawyer noted for the record, that it seemed inappropriate and ‘a waste of money’ for two attorneys to represent the County in the same negotiation.  He added, ‘something’s wrong here.’

        Commissioner Jason Moved to authorize the County Manager to sign
        the Contract after the Union ratifies it.  

Commissioner Collins preferred seeing the final document before it was signed.  Commissioner Jason withdrew his Motion and it was decided that Mrs. Borer would forward the final draft so Commissioner Collins could read it before it was signed.

Mrs. Borer explained that the Commissioners’ Annual trip to Cuttyhunk was scheduled for August 21.  This year, rather than a Commissioners’ meeting, Mrs. Borer suggested a ‘round table discussion’ with Gosnold Selectmen so knowledge could be shared.  Also, this would give the County Commissioners the opportunity to ask how they could better assist the Selectmen of Gosnold.  Commissioner Sawyer agreed that was an excellent format.

The County Information Booth at the Agricultural Fair was described in a Press Release.  Commissioner Sawyer wanted to be sure there would be information from Islanders for Universal Access.  Andy Krickl was contributing brochures, and also would attend the Cuttyhunk trip to look at accessibility issues on that Island.

Mrs. Borer reported that the white building on the New York Avenue property was demolished and backfilled.  The cesspools near the cabins were to be demolished and the County had a permit to demolish the Dick’s Bait and Tackle shop.  The contractor was ready to move the cabins as soon as the Sheriff’s Department completed a foundation for one that they would receive.  There was still no agreement with the Martha’s Vineyard Commission about reimbursement for the septic system.  Mrs. Borer and Attorney Cini were working with the MVC to resolve the issue.

Mrs. Borer told the Commissioners that David Kann would be retiring.  The Proclamation Committee, Commissioner Sawyer reported, would prepare a Proclamation to honor him at one of the next Commissioners’ meetings.  Commissioner Jason also reminded the Commissioners that Bob Murphy had served the SSA Financial Advisory Board for 23 years and should be acknowledged.  Discussion followed about when the new Law goes into effect.  Commissioners Sawyer and Collins asked Mrs. Borer to get a copy of the new Legislation.

The County Manager explained that before an RFP could be drafted for leasing property at the New York Avenue site, the property had to be declared available for disposition.

        Commissioner Jason Moved to declare the following property available
        for disposition by the County of Dukes County with the restriction that
        the property be utilized for agricultural and horticultural purposes:

        20,000 square feet of land, more or less, which is a portion of Map 4
        Parcel 87 (Oak Bluffs Tax Assessor Map) numbered lots 428, 430, 436, and
        438, each containing 5,000 square feet – at 114 New York Avenue, Oak
Bluffs, MA.

Commissioner Sawyer asked for clarification, adding that he didn’t understand why the phrase ‘available for disposition,’ was included.  Mrs. Borer explained that according to Procurement Law, this was the way it had to be done.  

Joseph Sollitto arrived at 7:55 PM.

Discussion continued with Commissioner Sawyer questioning the 20 year plus option for another 20 years.  Commissioner Jason said that was how County leases were written.

        Commissioner Sawyer Seconded the Motion.

He continued to question the wording, saying the County was not disposing of the land, but rather, leasing it, and why enter into an agreement for 40 years? The discussion continued.  Commissioner Collins noted a point of order, that nothing in the Motion was relative to a lease, and that should be a separate discussion.  

        Commissioner Collins Moved that the Motion be Amended to add ‘for the
        purpose of leasing said property to be used for agricultural and
horticultural purposes.  Commissioner Jason Seconded the Motion to
Amend.  Commissioners Collins, Jason and Leland voted Affirmatively.
Commissioner Sawyer Abstained.  The Motion to Amend carried.

Commissioner Jason added that the intention was to cooperate with the neighborhood and act in good faith since these issues were raised by the neighborhood.  Commissioner Sawyer didn’t disagree, but he questioned the 40 year commitment to a lease.  Commissioner Jason noted that leases were done that way at the Airport Business Park.

        Chairman Leland called for the Vote.  Commissioners Jason, Collins and
        Leland voted to Approve the Motion.  Commissioner Sawyer Abstained.  
        The Motion Passed.

Commissioner Collins voiced concern about the need to discuss the terms of the lease.  Mrs. Borer said the RFP need to be drafted, advertised and finalized.  Commissioners Sawyer and Collins asked to review the RFP before it was advertised.  Commissioner Collins said his concern was that in years to come, if the property was not being used as specified by the lease, there would be no recourse if the lease was for 40 years.

Mrs. Borer noted that she had sent a letter to the Editors of the newspapers in answer to an Editorial in the MV Times last week.

County Treasurer Flanders presented documents for the Commissioners to sign since they already authorized borrowing in anticipation of revenue.  She explained that the Airport needed cash to cover construction projects until grant funds were received.  Hence the Commissioners needed to sign the note for $750,000 for 90 days.  The bid that was accepted was from Eastern Bank for 1.95 for 90 days.  The Commissioners signed the note in the presence of County Clerk Sollitto as required.  He signed and sealed the documents.  

        Commissioner Collins Moved to Adjourn. Commissioner Sawyer
        Seconded the Motion.  The meeting Adjourned at 8:18 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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