Skip Navigation
This table is used for column layout.

CodeRED Emergency Notification Signup
Contact the County
Search Our Site

How to Get Here
Town Seal
DCC Minutes 02-23-2011
Dukes County Commission


Wednesday, February 23, 2011
5 p.m.
Dukes County Administration Building
9 Airport Road, Edgartown, MA

Commissioner Present: Chair Tristan Israel, Les Leland, Tom Hallahan, John Alley and Lenny Jason.

County Staff present: Russell H. Smith – County Manager, Martina Thornton – Ex. Assistant to County Manager, Noreen Mavro Flanders – County Treasurer, Carol Grant – Assistant Treasurer, T. J. Hegarty – Integrated Pest Management, Chuck Cotnoir - Emergency Management

*Others: Jonathan Snyder – DCC & Tisbury FinCom, Tad Crawford – DC Health Council, Peter Cabana & Nicholas Catt  – candidates for Cape Light Compact appointments, Chris Kennedy – Trustees of Reservations, Dr. Tsai – candidate for Associate Commissioner for Public Health, Bill Straw.
* Late arrival or early departure (see * in text)

1. Meeting was called to order at 5:00 PM

2. Minutes
Tom/Les moved to approve Minutes of 1-19-2011 meeting. All in favor.

3. Appointments

A. Appointment to Cape Light Compact and Cape & Vineyard Electric Coop
Peter Cabana introduced himself (civil engineer, 30 years in energy business, current representative of Tisbury in both organizations). He would like to explore potential development of solar panels at the land owned by County at the MV Airport. He will resign from his position in Tisbury should he be appointed as County representative.
Nicholas Catt introduced themselves (owner of Laundromat at the Airport, property management on properties at the Airport Business Park, on Advisory Board for Vineyard Power for one year now).  

Lenny/John moved to appoint Peter Cabana as the County’s representative to Cape Light Compact and the Cape & Vineyard Electric Cooperative. Discussion: Tom asked in the future to have background information on all candidates. So voted. In favor: Lenny, John, Tristan. Against: Les. Abstained: Tom. Motion passed.

Peter Cabana said there will be two advisory groups set up to advice Senator Wolf on the wind energy projects – one from Cape and one from Martha’s Vineyard. Peter was asked be on that group.  Tristan suggested for Peter to cooperate with Mr. Catt if needed.

B. Chairman appointed Associate Commissioners for 1 year:

- for Elderly – Chuck Cotnoir
- for Youth – Michael Joyce, Ana Thibodeau, Taylor Rasmussen, Justin Oslyn
- for Homeless – Connie Teixeira

C. Whole board appointments:

John/Lenny moved to appoint Marc Hanover as County’s representative to Steamship Authority (3 year appointment). All in favor.

John/Les moved to appoint Noreen Mavro Flanders, Dr. Weiss and alternate Michael Dutton to the Cape Cod Municipal Health Group (3-years). All in favor.

Les/John moved to appoint Sheriff Michael A. McCormack as the Point of Contact for the National Incident Management System (NIMS) (1-year). All in favor.

John/Les moved to appoint Charles Cotnoir as the County Emergency Management Director, to serve as the assistant to the Point of Contact for NIMS;  to serve as point of contact in emergency to the County’s SSA Board representative and to serve as County’s representative on the Medical Reserve Corp (1-year). All in favor.

John/les moved to appoint the Animal Shelter Board (3-year appointment): Diana Dozier, Mary Jane Pease, Duncan Ross, David Nash, Greg Orcutt, and Gail Croteau. All in favor.

John/Les moved to appoint to the Dukes County Regional Housing Authority (3-year appointment): Richard Skidmore for Aquinnah, Melissa Norton Vincent for Edgartown and Harvey Beth for Oak Bluffs. All in favor.

D. Interview of Dr. Tsai, candidate for Associate Commissioner for Public Health
Dr. Tsai introduced himself. He worked 10 year at the MV Hospital, last 5 years as Chief of the Emergency Room Staff. Now he is working off island, but would like to give back to the community. Chuck said that Dr. Tsai was the incident commander for the flu clinics. Beth Toomey, member of the Public Heath Committee, also recommends Dr. Tsai for this position. Tristan asked Lenny about the role of this position. Lenny said that it was to continue work of Dr. Klein, Susan Wasserman and Chris Knowles. Chuck said that during the last flu clinic Chris Knowles collected about 1000 e-mail addresses for the distribution of health related information, which needs to be put into the county website. Tristan asked if Dr. Tsai could help us to advocate for the services of the veterans at the local hospital.

Tristan appointed Dr. Tsai as Associate Commissioner for Public Health for 1 year.

E. Airport Appointment - cut off date for candidates
We had two candidates that made the deadline and two candidates that applied after the deadline. Tom pointed out that the cut off date was made public. Russell said that the Administrative Code is silent to it, it does not dictate a deadline and so it leaves the commissioners with an option to extend if they want to.
Les/Tristan moved not to extend deadline for applications. So voted. In favor: Les, Lenny, Tom, John. Against: Tristan. Motion passed.

Interviews of the two remaining candidates will be conducted at the Mach 9th meeting.

F. Appointment of the Commissioners’ representative to the DC Health Council

Tom/John moved to appoint Michael Loberg as County Commissioner’s representative to the Health Council.  Discussion: Tad Crawford clarify that since Tom Hallahan was unable to attend the meetings and Mr. Loberg was unable to serve under the consumer category on the Health Council, this is a good solution to both problems. All in favor.
The Commissioners held a minute of silence for late Sheriff Look.

*Tad Crawford and Dr. Tsai left.

4. Update on Pilgrim Resource Conservation & Development Council (RC&D) and mosquito testing – T.J. Hegarty
RC&D - T.J. was nominated by all three state councils to attend the National RC&D leadership training in Kentucky. He was also in Washington representing the state (see info in packets including 2010 Council accomplishments). He also attended National Association of RC&D Councils luncheon to present award for outstanding support for RC&D program to Massachusetts Farm Bureau Federation, Inc.  There is a $300K loan available form the Dept. of Agriculture for local farmers and fishermen. T.J. suggested inviting Irene and Dawn from RC&D to help develop the loan and make the towns and the MV/DC Fishermen’s Association aware of this opportunity.
Mosquito Testing – T.J. asked for moment of silence for Margaret Ann Laber, who worked at the Cape Cod Mosquito Control Project. See e-mail attached regarding the changes in the process of testing mosquitoes. T.J. will have meetings to assure that we can work out the difficulties and can have the testing done this summer. We have currently $2700.50 set aside for mosquito testing.

5. Trustees of Reservation (TTOR) – Chris Kennedy
There is massive erosion on Chappy side of Norton Point, loosing about 1 foot per day. This will continue for another 2-5 years at this rate. There is no vehicle access anymore but it is still open for public to walk on and go fishing etc. The Edgartown side of Norton Point is wider and growing. It is a shore bird paradise. There is a large turn colony. They will have to close about 1/3 of the beach closest to the breach in June and part of July (nesting season) for vehicle access.
There have been staffing changes in the TTOR. Chris stepped down as South Regional Director and is now the MV Superintendent. They will increase staffing for the summer (shorebird staff, patrol rangers, educators).   
        Fee increases – at Norton Point (was same for past 5 years) – see attached
The day passes would increase for residents to $30, non-residents $40 per day. Annual permits for residents would increase to $75, non-residents $125. This increase is over 20% and needs approval of County Commissioners. This would generate about another $45K per year, which will increase the County lease fee to $54K. Chris said that last year it was about $210K in annual revenue, most of it comes in June, July and August. Chris explained that the Norton Point is growing in popularity due to the breach and the fact that the permit for residents for Chappy is $180 (3x as much). There is more enforcement needed to protect the nesting birds. Tristan suggested public hearing in 2 weeks regarding the increase before the Commissioners vote.  

6. FY2012 BudgetDraft 2 – Tom presented the new coversheet of the 2nd draft on behalf of the Finance Committee (Tom, Russell and Jonathan Snyder). On March 9th Commissioners can bring specific questions. FinCom went through the budget line by line already. There is a new Dept. 1210 – reserve line with $20K for salary adjustments after the job description revisions (2/3) and 2 other projects (1/3). The total surplus of the budget is $483. The County Advisory Board (CAB) would like the budget level funded and the 2.5% increase of the town assessment justified. The next CAB meeting is on March 9th at 2.30pm.
He asked the Commissioners to mark these changes on their first version of the budget:
Page1 - projected revenue – misc. income should read $5K (not $1K),
Page 2 - new line #48902 - credit card processing fee revenue $2K.
Page 3 – Dept. 301 – Associate Commissioners – there should be $5K in FY2011 and $0 in FY2012 as we approved the extra money for the homelessness.
Page 7 – Dept. 610 – Administration Building – line 54620 office rent needs to be $13,500 to reflect the inflation clause.
Page 10 (new) – Dept. 1201 - $20K total of which $11-12K is for salary adjustments
Page 11 (old page 10) – Dept. of Economic Development - $20K of which $10K is for advertising and goes back to the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce. Russell said that the additional $10K is reserved for proposed joint project with the Martha’s Vineyard Chamber of Commerce to promote local products. The revenue from the sale of the license plates is for economic development. Tom said that the CAB suggested using it for a grant writer.  Tristan said that this will need discussion.
Russell explained the process of reviewing the job descriptions was not to have county employees be paid the same as town employees, they will still be paid less. The intent was to have a grade and step scale that is comparable and have the placement done cohesively on the scale. The two projects that Russell would also like to get done on the maintenance of the Administration Building are to hook up the generator ($5,500) and to fix the broken window in the Youth Task Force office ($2,500). It would be valuable in cases of emergency as located close to the Communication Center and the Airport where the supplies would come in. Chuck prepared 3-page explanation of why the generator should be hooked up. Commissioners agreed with the window repair and asked for discussion about the generator hook up at next meeting. The increases in the budget are mostly in the salary lines due to projected step increases, changes of health plans etc., other then that the expenses are down and the projected revenue is up. Tom asked for the regulations for the license plate revenue to find out what we can use it for.
Russell made a point that the 2.5% is important to the County since the County can not use overrides. Russell stated that of the towns’ assessments only $55K goes to the general operation of the County. This is the average over the last 14 years.

7. Manager’s Report
NACO County promotion project – they are offering to do 6 1-minute clips for free that we could put on our website to promote the county. Russell suggested using one clip for each town and why it is interesting to come here. Tom suggested involving the Chamber of Commerce in the process.
John/Lenny moved to agree to for the Manager go ahead with this project. All in favor.

Courthouse – the bids for the repair of windows are due this Friday.
Regional grant – towns agreed to cooperate with the County on planning for a regional grant to have one person do a service provided under the local Boards of Health regionally – like restaurant inspections or beach water testing. The proposal will go out tomorrow for $28K.

8. Old Business
Lenny asked about the results of proposal to do the accounting for the MV Commission. Noreen said she met with Jeff Wooden and discussed what his responsibilities are and what the County could do. He will meet with Mark London and their FinCom to see where the savings would be.

Les asked about the Courthouse gutters. Russell said he still has no timeline and plans to go before the Edgartown Historic Commission with the window repair proposal. Tristan asked Russell not to wait and go right away and have timeline by the next meeting.

9. Correspondence
Letter from Woody Williams regarding the unresolved veterans’ services on the island. Tristan asked Russell to write letters to Sen. Kerry and Brown and Congressman Keating and Senator Dan Wolf and have it ready for next meeting. Tristan appointed Carlene as contact person for this issue and would like to revisit this issue at every meeting to push towards solution. Tom suggested getting newspapers involved as well.

John/Les moved to adjourn the meeting at 6:42 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
  • 2011 Appointment sheet for 2-23-11
  • E-mail from Michael Loberg with application
  • Copy of ad for County appointments
  • Pilgrim RC& D materials
  • Two e-mails regarding mosquito testing
  • Trustees of Reservations FY2011 Operating Budget and e-mail regarding fee increases
  • FY2011 Budget – 2. draft cover sheet
  • Power Generator Justification
  • Old Business List
  • Copy of Letter to the Editor from Woody Williams
  • Letter from DOR on new equalized valuations
  • E-mail from Duncan Ross inviting Commissioners to the next All Island Selectmen’s meeting
  • Cape Light Compact December report
  • Sign-up sheet

The County of Dukes County PO Box 190, Edgartown, MA 02539
Phone: 508.696.3840    Fax: 508.696.3841
   Hours Vary by Department
Virtual Towns & Schools Website