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DCC Minutes 07-28-2010
Dukes County Commission
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
5 p.m.
Dukes County Administration Building
9 Airport Road, Edgartown, MA

Commissioner Present: Carlene Gatting, Tristan Israel, Lenny Jason, Melinda Loberg and Tom Hallahan.

Not present: Les Leland, John Alley

County Staff present: Russell H. Smith – County Manager, Martina Thornton – Ex. Assistant to County Manager, Sarah Kuh – Vineyard Health Care Access Program Director.
Others: Peter Temple, Exec. Director and Sam Feldman, board member of MV Donors Collaborative, Joanie Ames of MVTV.

1. Meeting was called to order at 5:10 PM

2. Minutes

Tristan/Melinda moved to approve the Minutes of 6-9-2010 meeting. So voted. In favor: Tristan, Lenny, Melinda, Carlene. Abstained: Tom (was not present at the meeting).

Tristan/Melinda moved to approve the Minutes of 7-14-2010 meeting with changes as proposed by Melinda . So voted. In favor: Tristan, Lenny, Melinda, Tom. Abstained: Carlene (was not present at the meeting).

3. FY2011 Budget
Russell explained that the continuation of a public hearing was scheduled at 5:15 PM on August 11th and advertised in the paper. The FY2011 budget already approved by the County Commissioners included the move to 75/25 split of health insurance between the county and the employees. We held the employees harmless. The budget had a $3,667 surplus. The new change is to give employees the annual step increase in FY2011 which was not part of the initial plan. It would done by moving each employee from the “whole” amount to the next higher step on the new scale. For all the county employees together across all the departments the change represents about $8K increase in expenses. We added $3K to the projected license plate revenue and $3K to the projected alarm fees revenue as in both cases actual revenue exceeded the projection for FY10. This would bring the budget down to about $300 surplus. The second change is to include the second town approved warrant article amount $61,136 to the Vineyard Health Care Access Program budget. This will increase the revenue of the VHCAP as well as expense equally, leaving the budget in balance. Sarah explained that she has two budgets – the county VHCAP budget and a budget that includes all the grants and other sources of revenue, which she presented to the commissioners. Her position was partially funded through grants until September 2009. There was no money after that in the county budget to pay her for the difference and so she was only paid for 35 hours. She asked to increase her hours in the county budget from 35 to 40 per week for FY2011 as that is the number of hours she works. The difference would be covered by the additional money from the towns. She lost a 30hour position couple of years ago that she was not able to replaces, so she is planning to hire help with the additional funds. Russell pointed out the county supports the program with $26K which is only 10% of her budget. We also provide her with a building with expense of $3,300. Tom suggested to have the number of hours for Sarah established aside from the budget process based on the need of the program and then work on the budget to reflect it, which would be a cleaner process. Lenny suggested dealing with it in a supplemental budget once it is known how much funds the towns will contribute.

4. Proclamation of a Philanthropy Date
MV Donors’ Collaborative asked county to designate a day as philanthropy day to acknowledge all the people that give money, time and expertise to the island non-profit organization to help run the programs and towns. Sam Feldman said that the MV Donors’ collaborative has worked for 7 years now to advocate proportional philanthropy (which means that if you stay on the island for 2 months 2/12 of your philanthropy should go to island non-profits) and supports the island non-profits including grant writing. The non-profits spent in 2008 over $70 million – 13% of our economy. Peter Temple added that philanthropy will play even bigger role in the future of the island as the Island Plan presented by the MV Commission is planning that much of the work that needs to be done to make the island sustainable will be done by non-profits.

Tristan/Melinda moved to do a proclamation of a philanthropy day on Martha’s Vineyard. Discussion: Russell read the proclamation:                               
WHEREAS, the Island of Martha’s Vineyard lies seven miles off the coast of Massachusetts, and
WHEREAS, the Island represents an isolated, separate system as it pertains to public services and public servants, and
WHEREAS, many of the residents and visitors consider the Island a unique and special place because of its historical, cultural and natural attributes, and
WHEREAS, many of the residents must rely on the local services, local governance and local resources to address their needs, and
WHEREAS, the Island is blessed with many individuals who give of their time and expertise to fulfill the needs of the Island, and
WHEREAS, without the generous outpouring of philanthropy, both financial and otherwise, the Island would be a much lesser place, and
WHEREAS, the towns would cease to function without the volunteers who people the town boards and committees, and
WHEREAS, the regional organizations would cease to function without philanthropy, the support of the local business community and the volunteers to man their boards and run the organizations, and
WHEREAS, many of the public services, both social and recreational, would cease to function without the generous and caring stewardship of our residents, seasonal residents and visitors, and
WHEREAS, the County of Dukes County would like to acknowledge the individuals who give so freely of their time, skills and money to support our community, now

THEREFORE,  the County of Dukes County declares August 13, 2010   PHILANTHROPY DAY for Martha’s Vineyard, in recognition of the people whose caring and generosity have made the Island, and keep the Island , a wonderful place to live or visit.      
So voted. All in favor.

5. County Manager’s Report

Deeds Excise Fund Resolution
Russell explained that the auditor recommended in the Management Letter a formal adoption of the revenue distribution from the Deeds Excise Fund as part of the budget process. A resolution was presented that would divide the revenue from the deeds excise fund – 60% to the County and 40% to the Registry as has been done historically and is in line with the statute. The resolution would set the split for FY2011 and each subsequent year unless otherwise voted by the commissioners.

Tristan/Melinda moved to adopt the resolution as presented. Discussion: Carlene would like the resolution to mirror the statute in saying that we will not give more then 60% to the County and no less then 40% to the Registry. Martina explained that the purpose of the resolution would be to set the exact number for the budget. Carlene asked for Noreen to meet with the auditor and get an explanation why we could not keep it as it is in the statute. Motion was tabled.

CodeRED is a reverse 9-1-1  - emergency notification system that will allow the emergency services and towns on the island to notify people in the community about certain emergency situations. Individuals and businesses with a street address on Martha’s Vineyard can register their phone numbers including cell phones and e-mails to receive these emergency notifications. You can go on the county website under the  News or under the Public Safety section where there is more information about the system and how to sign up. It only takes couple of minutes.

Right of Entry to Army Corps of Engineers
They would like us to give them a five year Right-of-Entry to lots owned by the County on Norton Point and West Tisbury Great Pond to survey the beach and look for unexploded ordinances. Russell spoke with Edgartown about their experience from last year. The contractor kept the public access to the beach open until they found ordinances and needed to dispose of it.

Tom/Lenny moved to grant the Right-of-way. Discussion: Carlene asked why do they need 5 years to do this and if there is protection of the endangered species being accounted for. Russell said that the contract talks about it in letter e) that they will minimize the impact on nesting birds etc. They hire the Mass Audubon Society to monitor the nesting birds in the area to avoid any disturbance and go by the state guidelines. Tristan asked if the Trustees of Reservation know about this. Russell said that they also get notified. The Army Corps hire a contractor to do this. Lenny said that we do not have much choice as we can not do it ourselves. So voted. All in favor.

Tom acquired about the necessity/function of the helicopter fly bys and who is responsible for this operation. Russell said that it is most likely a joined operation and you will find out from the police chiefs.

Lenny/Tom moved to adjourn the meeting at 6.15 p.m. All in favor.

Respectfully Submitted by:

JOSEPH E. SOLLITTO JR., Clerk of the Courts

Documents presented at the meeting and part of the official records:

  • Agenda
  • FY2011 Proposed Budget 7/27/10 draft
  • VHCAP FY2011 Budget
  • Philanthropy Day Proclamation
  • Draft Resolution #02-2010 regarding the Deeds Excise Fund
  • Proposed contract regarding Right-Of-Entry for the Dept. of Army
  • Letter from SSA dated July 14th regarding the end of mailing minutes of their meetings and that they will provide it per request electronically.

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