DUKES COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
September 27, 2006, 5 p.m.
Call to order
Chairman John Alley called the meeting to order at 5:03 p.m. A quorum was present. Commissioners Robert Sawyer, Paul Strauss, and Leslie Leland, were present as well as County Manager E. Winn Davis, and Jennifer Caton, Executive Assistant.
Other representatives or visitors present included: Sheriff Michael McCormack, Dukes County Sheriff; Chuck Cotnoir, Emergency Management; Noreen Mavro-Flanders, Treasurer; and Joanie Ames of MVTV
Adoption of Minutes:
Commissioner Leland/ Smith MOVED that the Commissioners vote to accept the Minutes of Regular Meeting September 13, 2006 as amended, SO VOTED (4-0-0).
Add Leslie Clapp’s name as present and addition of pagination. On page five there should be more of an explanation of the variable rate proposal for the Steamship Authority. Also on page five there should be a notation that there is still a problem with the wait times from 8am to 9am on the SSA lines. On page 8, second paragraph, clarification that all projections show the highest population growth will be in that particular age group.
County Manager’s Report:
County Prescription Discount Cards
Winn Davis announced the Prescription Discount Cards arrived 2 weeks earlier than expected. They are available to all residents of the County at the County Administration Building.
Courthouse Roof Update
Winn Davis gave an update of the leaking Courthouse Roof. He said that the manufacturer has responded and hired an installer called North Star Construction. They came this morning and estimated the cost of repair to temporarily secure building is $1,500. They were only allocated for $1,000. They would be getting approval for an additional $500. This would secure the building until the permanent repairs can be done. There is agreement with everyone that the entire roof membrane needs to be removed and replaced.
Health Employee Update
Winn Davis reported that he met with the Oak Bluffs Board of Health. He explained that they are involved in discussions regarding sharing an employee for Public Health.
Winn Davis reported that the County employees in supervisory capacities would begin a management-training program through the Employee Assistance Program.
State Beach Parking Tickets Update
Winn Davis announced that there was still a problem with people parking on the beach sand. He said that the County has a legal obligation to protect the sand dunes. No parking on the sand dunes would continue to be enforced.
Paul Strauss stated that he has been aware of the parking on the sand and would like to see it rectified. He pointed out that sand dunes are migratory in nature. He would like to see if there is anything that could be done to prevent the dunes from migrating into the road.
Winn Davis responded that the Oak Bluffs conservation would have to be involved and it would be something that could best be dealt with over the winter.
Sheriff Michael McCormack reinforced that the only reason why there is ticketing on State Beach is to protect the dunes.
Youth Task Force Update
Jennifer Caton reported that there was a Youth Task Force meeting today, which had participants from all of the island community. The purpose was to address the issue of substance abuse among the youth.
Les Leland said he wanted to discuss the parking tickets further. He asked what the standard was in determining if someone was parked on the dune.
Sheriff McCormick explained that at least 2 wheels have to be off the pavement.
Les Leland mentioned that he received some complaints regarding the use of the County Engineer for ticketing purposes.
Winn Davis said that every County employee has a responsibility to protect the County's assets especially if the law is being violated. He explained that the County Engineer’s job is not to patrol the beach and write tickets, however in his travels, if he sees a violation it is incumbent upon him to deal with it. It is also more efficient to have him deal with it, instead of calling someone else to deal with the violation.
Les Leland expressed that it could be just as efficient to have the Engineer make a call to the Sheriff's Department instead of writing the ticket.
Sheriff Michael McCormack clarified that the County Engineer performs certain amount of hours of service each town and the County. The Engineer is a contract employee and does not include the time writing tickets in his billing hours.
Winn Davis pointed out that the County Engineer often works more hours than he bills for.
Paul Strauss said he was inclined to agree with Les Leland. He said the law enforcement officials should have the duty of writing tickets.
Robert Sawyer said he was comfortable with the decision of Winn Davis and the Sheriff.
Public Hearing on Dress Code Policy (see attached)
John Alley opened the public hearing on the Dress Code Policy.
Robert Sawyer said that the word “written” should be added to the third paragraph in the first sentence. It should read: “Each department will adopt an individual written code developed by the department head which is consistent with the above expectations and approved by the County Manager.”
John Alley closed the public hearing.
Commissioner Leland / Sawyer MOVED to accept and add the Dress Code Policy to Section 21.1 to the Personnel By-Laws with the addition of the word “written” be added to the third paragraph first, effective October 1, 2006, SO VOTED (4-0-0).
John Alley opened the public hearing on the e-mail policy. (See attached)
When no comments were made, John Alley closed the public hearing.
Commissioner Strauss / Leland MOVED to accept and add the Email Policy to Section 21.1 to the Personnel By-Laws as written to be effective October 1, 2006, SO VOTED (4-0-0).
Leslie Leland asked for an update on the Request for Proposals.
Winn Davis explained that there were RFPs for carpentry, painting, electrical, janitorial, and trash removal. He said they had received two to four bids on every item. He is currently verifying the information provided on the bids and would be coming back to the Commissioners with recommendations.
Robert Sawyer said that he wanted to state for the record that he has heard from the public that they did not understand or have accurate information regarding County programs. He feels the County is delinquent in letting the public know what is available through the County. He said he would like to see an aggressive public relations program to communicate to the public about the wonderful programs and departments of the County.
Paul Strauss suggested that public communications be incorporated into a job description.
Winn Davis pointed out that Lt. Rose had put together a DVD that highlighted the different programs offered by the Sheriff's Department. He said he was hoping with the help of Lt. Rose that they County could do something similar.
Paul Strauss expressed the importance of continuity in communications.
Noreen Mavro Flanders said the community in general does not understand the value of programs, such as the Communication Center. It costs almost $700,000 a year. This is an expense the towns would have to pay, without the Sheriff's Department.
Robert Sawyer said that he has never known media or the newspapers to turn down a press release. He said if you submit an article, they would print it. He also added that it also does not cost anything, except time.
Paul Strauss said that it was important for the County to decide internally to have an active communications program. He said there should be a communications specialist, one point person to actively communicate with the media and the public.
Noreen Mavro Flanders said that at 7pm there would be an Advisory Board Meeting. She distributed a report of transfers that would be presented to the Advisory Board. She explained that the first item on their agenda would be a COLA, which was already voted on by the Commissioners. The second was transfers, for paying unpaid bills from Fiscal Year 2006 that came in late.
· The Dukes County Advisory Board meets September 27th at 7:00PM at the Dukes County Administration Building.
· The Dukes County Health Council meets September 28th at 7:30AM at the West Tisbury Public Safety Building
· The Martha’s Vineyard Airport Commission Meets October 4th at 5:30 at the Martha's Vineyard Airport Terminal Conference Room
· The Dukes County Retirement Board meets October 10th at 9AM at the Dukes County Administration Building
· The Dukes County Commissioners meet October 11th at 5:00PM at the Dukes County Administration Building
Letter from Jeffrey C. Wooden
With no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 5:56 p.m.
Respectfully Submitted by:
Jennifer Caton, Executive Assistant