Joint meeting of the
Dukes County Advisory Board on Expenditures
Dukes County Commission
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Dukes County Administration Building
9 Airport Road, Edgartown, MA
Commissioner Present: Lenny Jason, Carlene Gatting, Tom Hallahan (Skype)*, Melinda Loberg
Commissioners absent: Tristan Israel, John Alley
Advisory Board: Arthur Smadbeck (Edgartown – 35.96%), Jeff Kristal (Tisbury – 14.86%), Skipper Manter (West Tisbury – 14.20%), Walter Vail (Oak Bluffs – 14.87), Frank Fenner (Chilmark – 15.83%)
County Staff present: Russell H. Smith – County Manager, Martina Thornton – Exec. Assistant, Noreen Mavro Flanders – County Treasurer, Carol Grant – Assistant Treasurer, Chuck Cotnoir – Emergency Director, Sean Flynn – Airport Manager, Elaine Graves – Airport Financial Administrator, Dianne Powers – Register of Deeds
Others: Jonathan Snyder – Fin Com, Remy Tumin – MV Gazette, Joanne Ames - MVTV
County Advisory Board (CAB) meeting was called to order at 2:10 p.m.
FY2012 Budget Transfers
Russell presented CAB with a request for FY2012 budget transfers (see letter attached) and explained the reasons.
Dukes County Commission (DCC) meeting was called to order at 2:15 p.m.
Discussion regarding transfer of $4K to the IPM supply line and increase of projected revenue for this department. T.J. said he is still servicing Oak Bluffs customers at higher rate which was against what the CAB recommended at their last meeting in fall of 2011.
Skipper/ Walter moved to approve the transfer of $3500 to go from Martina’s salary line to the temporary employee line in the Commissioners’ budget (Dept.300) and $400 to transfer from Associate Commissioners’ budget to Dept.300 to cover the membership in the Mass Municipal Association (MMA).
Walter/Jeff moved to approve the $4K transfer to IPM program and the increase of revenue. Discussion: Noreen explained that T.J. needs more money in a supply line because he did a big project in West Tisbury and depleted inventory. The increase in expenses will be offset by the extra revenue he is bringing in. Right now the supply line is a negative $1,500.
Vote taken on both motions together. All CAB members in favor.
FY2013 Draft Budget
Russell presented the latest draft of the FY2013 budget. The Maintenance of Effort for the Sheriff’s Department that we turn over to the Retirement System to cover the Sheriff’s retiree unfunded liabilities. The amount decreased from $501,702 to $307,540 as this is the remainder of the payment (the payment scheduled is ending in FY2013). DCC voted to decrease the assessment to the towns by the difference.
There are some other changes since the last time commissioners saw the draft:
The $11K for the Treasurer’s server was removed from the coversheet as this expense is already included in the Treasurer’s budget.
Dept.2200 – Emergency Management – increase in expense by $2K due to the narrow banding requirements.
Dept.301 – Remove $400 that was budgeted previously for RC & D membership (organization dissolved).
Dept. 300 – Increase by $425 to cover the membership to the MMA.
Lenny/John moved these changes. So voted. All DCC members in favor.
FY2013 Budget discussions with CAB (see attached)
Russell said that there is an increase in retirement line across the budget. He explained the major changes in each department:
Dept.300 – increase in health insurance line (in case the new county manager required a family plan);
Dept. 301 - $1000 for efforts to fight homelessness;
Dept. 310 – Carol explained that there are more costs associated with the on-line acceptance of payments for parking tickets;
Dept. 600 – added $800 for the service contract for the new copier;
Dept. 1210 – reserved $10K for a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) and will be distributed to departments once the percentage is set;
Dept. 1500 – the number in the budget represents the total of the 1st and 2nd warrant articles that are coming before the towns;
Dept. 2200 – increase in expenses due to the narrow banding requirements;
Dept. 3200 – the cost of labor to do the mosquito testing is included in the budget, the revenue projections are conservative, and so far Oak Bluffs share is included in the budget as we are expecting a positive vote at the town meeting. The mosquito income from the towns’ boards of health is shown on a separate line;
Dept. 3300 – Veteran agent – decrease due to change in health insurance;
Dept. 3400 – Registry of Deeds Maintenance of Effort – required;
Dept. 3500 – Sheriff’s Maintenance of Effort – remainder to pay off Sheriff’s retiree unfunded liability.
Skipper questioned the following:
COLA – Martina said that the Personnel Board is reviewing different formulas and approaches and is planning to give the DCC recommendation soon. Skipper said that he will not vote on a blank $10K reserve for COLA, he would like to see the COLA included in each department to see how it affects the budget and to be able to compare it to last year’s budget. Noreen said that there was a 2% COLA given for FY2012 but the budget that was distributed does not show the change in each department and the percentage of change compared to last year is therefore misleading.
Carlene/Lenny moved to adopt a policy that the County Cost of Living Adjustment will be calculated based on the average of the six island town’s COLA given in the prior fiscal year. Discussion on what is a difference between average versus median. Art asked if Gosnold will be included in the calculations. The answer was no.
Carlene/Lenny rescinded their motion. So voted. All in favor.
Carlene/John moved to adopt a policy that the County Cost of Living Adjustment will be calculated based on the median of the six island town’s COLA given in the prior fiscal year (Median being the average between the two middle numbers). So voted. All in favor.
The Personnel Board should be informed that they are to stop working on the COLA.
Russell will re-do the budget to show the actual COLA for FY13 in each salary line.
Dept. 300 – Skipper questioned if there is a need for two full-time employees in the county administration stating that one person can do both jobs and with Russell leaving there is an opportunity to review it. It would be hard to scale back from full-time position once a new person comes in. You can always increase hours if needed. Russell said that Martina took a lot of the administrative functions of the office, but aside from managing 3-4 people the majority of his time is spent on projects (2/3 to ¾). If one person would be left with both jobs the projects would come to a stop. Carlene said that the new county manager should have executive management level skill set including grant writing skills if kept at full-time. Lenny said that DCC should make the decision if a full-time manager is needed and he knows how time
consuming the job is. Melinda said that the difference between full- or part-time is small and it could turn out to be a good investment. Noreen agreed that the grant writing skills would be worth the extra and the towns asked for it. Skipper disagreed, it would be better to hire a professional grant writer. Melinda said that the Search Committee will work on the job description. Walter said that if the manager’s performance is being evaluated on an annual basis there should be knowledge if there is extra time to do more or if the hours could be reduced. Lenny said that Russell accomplished a lot since he started (renegotiated contract with the Trustees of Reservation bringing $45k annually, the 75/25 insurance split was established, job descriptions were revised, new scale put in place. He increased revenue and cut expenses.) Russell said that it would be hard to find a professional with the desired skill set that is willing to work for 20 hours per week.
Dept. 301 – Skipper questioned if the hand held devises will be used this year and if that will reduce the work load of the Parking Clerk. Carol said that only Oak Bluffs wants to go ahead at this time. Melinda suggested having Memorandum of Understanding between the county and the towns for the services county provides.
Dept. 610 - $800 added for a copier maintenance service. We changed the trash company and saved about $300.
Dept. 3200 – Skipper asked if the mosquito trapping is included in T.J.’s 40-hour work week and the $51,080 salary line. Russell said yes, T.J. will not get any additional money for doing the mosquito trapping. Last year the sub-committee of county commissioners requested that the mosquito work be included in the regular work week. After Oak Bluffs voted out of the IPM program it was included and money collected from the Boards of Health partially offset the shortfall. In FY2013 budget the revenue is listed on a separate line.
Skipper asked if there are any plans to start funding the OPEB. Melinda deferred the question to the Finance Committee. Jonathan Snyder said he would be in favor of funding but no action was taken yet. The towns would have to agree to the funding. Melinda said that it could be funded from the residue of the towns’ assessment that was originally for the Sheriff’s Maintenance of Effort and that the County will be now returning to the towns. Skipper suggested a separate warrant article and start with a small amount ($5K per year). Frank said next year would be a good year to address this. Russell said that the County OPEB liability is about $2million and the Airport’s is about $3million. Jonathan said that Tisbury’s is $13-20million. The Finance Committee will look into this for next year.
There were no questions regarding the Airport’s budget.
The public hearing on budget was scheduled for April 4th at 7pm. There will be also transfers for FY2012 budget on the agenda.
Skipper/Frank moved to adjourn the CAB meeting at 3:40pm.
The CAB members, Sean Flynn, Elaine Graves, T.J. Hegarty, Jonathan Snyder, Noreen Mavro Flanders, Carol Grant and Dianne Powers left the meeting.
Airport – Jeff Kristal withdrew his name as candidate based on the State Ethics Commission opinion he obtained. Dan Flynn said he was an Airport Commissioner and held several other position that would be beneficial to him if he was appointed. He is aware of the potential for a conflict of interest and he knows what steps he would need to take in order to operate within the parameters of the law. He was an Airport Commissioner while his son was the Assistant Airport Manager. He did not seek a written opinion from the State Ethics Commission at this time. Melinda read letters from Jim Coyne, Denys Wortman and Richard Michaelson as they were unable to come to the meeting. A ballot vote was taken.
John/Lenny moved to appoint Connie Teixeira, James Coyne and Denys Wortman as Airport Commissioners for a 3-year term. All in favor.
Commissioners thanked Dan Flynn for applying.
*Tom was disconnected for the remainder of the meeting.
Health Council Appointments
Terre Young mentioned people who were on the Health Council for years and are now leaving – among others Tad Crawford, and thanked all for serving on the council. She read a list of new members to be appointed for a 2-year term: Reapplying: Cynthia Doyle
James H. Weiss
James J. Ferritter, Jr.
New candidates: Diane Jetmund
Joyce Stiles – Tucker
Gertrude Cleave Carter
John/Lenny moved to appoint all candidates as presented for a 2-year term to serve on the Dukes County Health Council. All in favor.
Diane Jetmund and Joyce Stiler-Tucker introduced themselves.
Creation of a Search Committee for a new county manager
Melinda appointed Carlene, Tristan, Noreen, Skipper Manter as CAB representative and Michael Joyce as the County Personnel Board representative. She charged the committee with refining the job description and bringing it back to DCC for endorsement. After that the position will be advertised and the search committee will come back to DCC with the 3 finalists. Lenny suggested having 5 finalists.
The next meeting was scheduled for March 21st at 9am and John Alley will be chairing the meeting. (that meeting was later canceled).
John/Carlene moved to adjourn the meeting at 4:10pm.
Lenny/Carlene moved to go into an executive session pursuant to MGL Chapter 30A, section 21(a)3 and section 21(a)10 - Energy procurement discussion and not to reconvene for a regular meeting. Roll call vote was taken: Melinda Loberg – yes, Lenny Jason – yes, Carlene Gatting – yes, John Alley – no.
Respectfully Submitted by:
JOSEPH E. SOLLITTO JR., Clerk of the Courts
Documents presented at the meeting and part of the official records:
- FY2012 transfers and FY2013 budget changes
- FY2013 draft general fund budget
- FY2012 supplemental and FY2013 budget for the Airport
- IPM revenue update
- Letter from Denys Wortman
- Letter from James Coyne