DUKES COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
December 6, 2006, 5 p.m.
Call to order
Chairman John Alley called the meeting to order at 5:00 p.m. A quorum was present. Commissioners Robert Sawyer, Paul Strauss, Nelson Smith, Lenny Jason, and Les Leland were present as well as County Manager E. Winn Davis, and Jennifer Caton, Executive Assistant.
Other representatives or visitors present included Michael McCormack, Sheriff; Noreen Mavro – Flanders, Treasurer; Dianne Powers, Register; Joseph Sollitto, Clerk of the Courts; Joanie Ames MVTV; David Vigneault, DCRHA; Laura Barbera, DCRHA; Chris Kennedy, Trustees of Reservations, Chuck Cotnoir, Emergency Management; Nora Nevin, Richard Knabel, Paddy Moore, Tad Crawford, Jim Hickey, Jerry McCarthy, Friends of Sengekontacket; Max McCreery, Friends of Sengekontacket; and John Bugbee, Town of Tisbury.
There was a Moment of Silence for George Wey, father of Commissioner Roger Wey.
Certification of Vote – Jos. Sollitto, Esquire
The Commissioners certified the votes for Dianne Powers, Register of Deeds; and the Martha’s Vineyard Commission.
Proclamation of Childhood Cancer Awareness Week 1/2/07 – 1/9/07
Robert Sawyer / Nelson Smith MOVED The Dukes County Commissioners recognize that the week of January 2, 2007 through January 9, 2007 as Childhood Cancer Awareness Week, SO VOTED, (6-0-0) unanimous.
Acknowledgment of Service of Commissioner Nelson Smith and Robert Sawyer
John Alley presented Nelson Smith and Robert Sawyer with Certificates of Appreciation, hats, pens, and cake.
MVOL Partnership Discussion
There was discussion about how partnering with MVOL would fit into the goals that were set regarding communication.
Robert Sawyer expressed concern regarding the 30-day cancellation policy, lack of open competitive process, and the exclusivity of the contract. He would like to change the cancellation policy to one week. He does not have a problem with the general arrangement, but does not see how it benefits the County to have an exclusive arrangement.
Les Leland raised the question of the value of joining MVOL, when the County has their own website.
Winn Davis explained the biggest promotion would be the beaches and over-sand beach permits. This promotion is free. It is just a matter of cross-linking sites.
Lenny Jason said he thinks it is a good proposition and an opportunity for better communication. He does not see how it hurts the County.
Nelson Smith / Lenny Jason MOVED to enter into Phase 1 of the MVOL Partnership Proposal, SO VOTED, (4-1-1) and Robert Sawyer abstained and Les Leland opposed.
John Alley left the meeting at 5:17PM
Interview of Tisbury Nominee to DCRHA
Laura Barbera was interviewed for the Dukes County Regional Housing Authority.
John Bugbee asked if it is the policy of the Commission to interview individuals that are recommended by the Towns.
Robert Sawyer said it is not the first time the County has interviewed candidates recommended by a Town for the Housing Authority. It is a policy of the County to conduct interviews not just for the Housing Authority, but also for all appointments.
Nelson Smith and Lenny Jason MOVED to appoint Laura Barbera to the Dukes County Regional Housing Authority, with the term ending 12-31-2010, SO VOTED, (5-0-0) unanimous.
Chris Kennedy, TTOR, on Norton Point Beach
Chris Kennedy gave a report to the Commissioners on the past years activities managing Norton Point Beach. He also provided the written “2006 Norton Point Beach Report” (see attached).
Hap Hamel of Friends of Sengekontacket
Hap Hamel presented a letter that he had written to the County Commissioners (see attached). He requested the support of the Commissioners in endorsing a Beach Management plan that had been submitted by the Wood’s Hole Group. In addition he asked that a Coordinator be appointed to work with who ever is selected to develop the Beach Management Plan.
There was a brief discussion on why the Martha’s Vineyard Commission is not developing or carrying out the Beach Management Plan. Hap Hamel said that they will be involved with the plan, but not the lead agency.
Lenny Jason asked to receive a copy of the Beach Management Plan.
Winn Davis said that he would email the Commissioners the plan.
There was a brief discussion on how the coordinator would be chosen. Lenny Jason pointed out that the Barrier Beach Task Force should recommend a person. Then the County would make the approval.
Winn Davis pointed out that they are in position and ready to proceed now, without a coordinator. He also said that by contract he is the Project Manager and is in authority to sign off on expenditures.
Nelson Smith commented that he did not see anyone from the business community represented in the BBTF. He said he hopes that the Beach Management Plan does address the economic issues of the beach. He said it should not be managed just for the preservation aspects, although it is primary.
Robert Sawyer recommended that the request of Friends of Sengekontacket be taken under advisement and addressed in January with the new board.
National Incident Management System Appointment
Robert Sawyer said there had been a request that the Sheriff Michael A. McCormack be appointed as the single point of contact within the County’s jurisdiction to serve as the principal coordinator for NIMS implementation.
Sheriff Michael McCormack explained that the appointment would make him the point person in the event of a national incident. It would also ensure that NIMS was implemented at the County level.
Ted Stanley recommended the Chiefs of Police from the Towns be solicited for their opinions.
Sheriff Michael McCormack responded that he is the President of the Chiefs of Police Association. The Association had just met yesterday. This request arose out of that meeting. It was agreed that the Chiefs would be contacting their selectmen to appoint them as the single point of contact for their Towns. He would be the coordinator for the County.
Sheriff Michael McCormack also explained that he would like to ask Chuck Cotnoir, Emergency Manager to be his Assistant Coordinator.
Paul Strauss / Nelson Smith MOVED that the County Commissioners vote to appoint Sheriff Michael A. McCormack as the single point of contact within the County’s jurisdiction to serve as the principal coordinator for NIMS implementation, SO VOTED, (5-0-0) unanimous.
Emergency Manager’s Report- Chuck Cotnoir
Chuck Cotnoir gave a report on the Meals-Ready to Eat (MRE) and water that he received through FEMA. He was able to distribute them to the Towns (not to be used, prior to permission from FEMA). The distribution was done based on census population. The challenge he faced was storing the materials. He said that the County and Towns share a storage issue for emergency supplies. Another problem is supplies like MREs have to be temperature controlled. He also mentioned he would be attending a meeting to see if there is grant money available to build storage units.
County Manager’s Report
NACo. Board of Directors Position
Lenny Jason asked that this topic be tabled until the new Commissioners can participate in the discussion.
Update on Mass Health Funding
Winn Davis reported that the funding for the Commonwealth Care Program had been restored.
Youth Task Force Grant
Paul Strauss / Lenny Jason MOVED to accept the $10,000 Grant, with the condition that there would be no administrative cost, SO VOTED, (5-0-0), unanimous.
Winn Davis reported that after Cindy Doyle asked for representation from the County, that Jennifer Caton would be that person.
Veterans’ Services Grant
Farm Neck has given the Veterans’ Agent Department for the Active Duty Care Package Project a $2,000 grant.
Lenny Jason / Paul Strauss MOVED to accept the $2,000 Grant with the condition that there would be no administrative costs, SO VOTED, (5-0-0), unanimous.
Paul Strauss expressed that at some point the Commissioners should acknowledge Jo- Anne Murphy’s efforts and success in her role as Veterans’ Agent.
Charter Study Commission Update
Winn Davis reported that if the votes are certified, then the first meeting will be held on 12-14-06 at 5PM at the Vineyard Transit Authority Building.
Winn Davis circulated the provision in the Barnstable County Charter for funding opportunities. He explained that he had met with Senator Robert O’Leary and Robert Sawyer to discuss how to find funding sources that would have the least impact taxpayers.
Robert Sawyer expressed that he and Senator Robert O’Leary feel it is important to build a funding source into the Charter Commission’s recommendation.
West Tisbury Assessors’ Action
Winn Davis reported that the West Tisbury Assessors voted to remove the tax appeal of Ms. Ames and Mr. Revere to the Tax Appellate Board.
DCRHA & County Engineer Update
Winn Davis reported at the last meeting David Vigneault requested to use the County Engineer on Housing Authority projects. There have been ongoing conversations regarding the collaboration.
Wreaths Honoring Military Services Announcement
Winn Davis announced that on Thursday December 14, 2006 at 12 Noon, at Oak Grove Cemetery, 6 wreaths would be laid to honor the six branches of the military. This would be a national event.
Winn Davis gave the Commissioners an update. He said that they have responded to Ms. Witte’s letter and now are waiting on a response from the FAA.
· Letter from Ted Stanley
Robert Sawyer commented regarding the appointment the County makes to the Martha's Vineyard Commission. The Mass General Law states the County Commission shall appoint a County Commissioner with the right to appoint a designee.
Lenny Jason said the law was very clear, that they wanted a County Commissioner to serve. At some point there was no County Commissioners that wanted to serve, so “a designee” was added to the law.
· Letter from Public Employee Retirement Administration Committee.
Noreen Mavro-Flanders explained the letter from the Public Employee Retirement and Administration Commission. She confirmed that the County is on track.
Paddy Moore commented that she had been working with NACo for the last two years. She had found them to be very helpful. She urged the Commissioners to take advantage of the opportunities to be more involved with NACo.
· The next meeting of the Dukes County Commissioners will be Wednesday, December 20th, at 5 p.m. at the Administration Building. (If needed)
· The Dukes County Health Council meets January 25th, 2007 at 7:30 a.m. at the West Tisbury Public Safety Building.
Les Leland requested that the executive sessions be taped.
Robert Sawyer announced that the executive session should only take a few minutes. He explained that anyone who wanted to join the Commissioners for coffee and cake were more then welcome, they could wait in the other room and then rejoin.
Paul Strauss expressed that he would like to be sure about what the written law were regarding taping executive sessions.
Nelson Smith / Lenny Jason MOVED to enter into executive session at 6:15 p.m. to discuss pending litigation and not to reconvene into open session, SO VOTED, (5-0-0).
Respectfully Submitted by:
JOSEPH E. SOLLITTO JR., Clerk of the Courts