WATAUGA COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 3, 2003
The Watauga County Board of Commissioners held a regular meeting on Monday, February 3, 2003, at 9:00 A.M. in the Board Room of the Watauga County Courthouse.
PRESENT: James Coffey, Chairman
Jimmy Hodges, Vice-Chairman
Keith Honeycutt, Commissioner
David Blust, Commissioner
Allen Trivette, Commissioner
Rebecca Eggers-Gryder, County Attorney
Robert E. Nelson, Jr., County Manager
Deron Geouque, Assistant County Manager
Anita J. Fogle, Clerk to the Board
Chairman Coffey called the meeting to order at 9:00 A.M. welcoming those in attendance.
A moment of silence was observed.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Chairman Coffey called for additions and/or corrections to the January 13, 2003, special meeting and the January 21, 2003, regular meeting minutes.
Commissioner Honeycutt, seconded by Vice-Chairman Hodges, moved to approve the January 13, 2003, special meeting and the January 21, 2003, regular meeting minutes as presented.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Chairman Coffey called for additions or corrections to the February 3, 2003, agenda.
County Manager Nelson requested that Budget Amendments be added to the agenda after Tax Matters and be presented by Ms. Doris Isaacs.
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to approve the February 3, 2003, agenda as amended.
CALDWELL COMMUNITY COLLEGE AND TECHNICAL INSTITUTE FUNDING REQUEST
Dr. Sandra Anderson requested an allocation of $735,262 from the County’s capital reserve fund for community college projects. Dr. Anderson stated that these projects were reviewed by Dr. Ken Boham and Mr. John Cort at the last Board meeting and consisted of: 1] additional paving, 2] additions required by the Town of Boone’s zoning requirements (Requests 1 & 2 required additional in design services), and 3] purchase and installation of twelve modular units adjacent to the existing building on the campus. Dr. Anderson stated that Dr. Boham, out of town for a meeting, was willing to come to a future Board meeting and address any additional questions from the Board. Chairman Coffey recommended that, if approved, the funds be allocated only as expenses were incurred and the County received the bills for payment.
After discussion, by consensus, the Board agreed to table action on the Caldwell Community College funding request until the next Board meeting.
JOBLINK APPRECIATION WEEK IN WATAUGA COUNTY PROPOSED PROCLAMATION
Mr. Mike Wagoner and Ms. Melissa Soto discussed the JobLink program in Watauga County and requested the adoption of a draft proclamation naming JobLink Appreciation Week in Watauga County February 24-28, 2003. Ms. Soto then read the proposed proclamation
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Trivette, moved to adopt the JobLink Appreciation Week in Watauga County Proclamation as presented.
A. Monthly Collections Report – Tax Administrator, Kelvin Byrd, presented the Tax Collections Report for the month of January 2003.
B. Releases and Refunds – Tax Administrator Byrd presented the following Refunds and Releases for January 2003 for Board approval:
TO BE TYPED IN MINUTE BOOK
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Blust, moved to approve the Refunds and Releases Report for January 2003 as presented.
C. Tax Lien Report – Tax Administrator Byrd requested approval of the Tax Lien Report which would allow him to advertise the report of taxes that were liens on real estate in the County after March 1, 2003. Mr. Byrd stated the total outstanding tax bills as of January 31, 2003, was $1,819,652.79.
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to approve the Tax Lien Report as presented by Mr. Byrd.
Finance Director Doris Isaacs presented the following budget amendments for Board approval:
Account # Description Debit Credit
103300-343102 321 Speed Reduction Grant $61,754
103991-399101 Fund Balance Approp.-New $13,187
104312-412100 Salaries-Regular $16,333
104312-418100 Social Security Cont. $1,250
104312-418200 Retirement Cont. $1,633
104312-418300 Hospital Ins. Expense $2,625
104312-418600 Worker’s Comp. $350
104312-439500 Employee Training $750
104312-421200 Uniforms $3,000
104312-451000 Capital Outlay-Mobile Data Term. $6,000
104312-451001 Capital Outlay-In-Car Video $4,500
104312-451002 Capital Outlay-Traffic Radar $2,000
104312-451003 Capital Outlay-Mobile Radios $2,500
104312-451004 Capital Outlay-Portable Radios $1,000
104312-454000 Capital Outlay-Vehicle $25,000
104312-454001 Capital Outlay-Radar Trailer $8,000
The amendment recognized the award of the NC Governor’s Highway Safety Program funds to be used for the 321 Speed Reduction Project. The grant was accepted at the October 15th Board of Commissioner meeting. This grant was based on the federal fiscal year, which runs from October 1st to September 30th. Seven months of salary and fringes were budgeted for the current fiscal year. Three months of salary and fringes were budgeted in the next fiscal year budget.
Account # Description Debit Credit
213980-398100 Transfer From General Fund $388,381
219930-441100 Administration Building $63,381
219930-443200 Jail Project $50,000
219930-449210 Industrial Park $175,000
219930-461200 Recreation Facilities $100,000
The amendment recognized the reduction in funds for future capital projects due to rock removal expense at the Health Department building site.
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to approve the budget amendments as presented.
REVIEW OF DRAFT ORDINANCE TO REGULATE HIGH IMPACT LAND USES
Planning and Inspections Director, Mr. Joe Furman, reviewed the draft Ordinance to Regulate High Impact Land Uses including the changes requested by the Board at the Special Meeting on January 13, 2003.
After discussion, the Board requested Mr. Furman to revise the draft to include setbacks of 1500 feet (or the highest legal distance up to 1500 feet) for Asphalt Plants, Electric Generating Facilities, Chip Mills, Chemical Manufacturing Facilities, Chemical Storage Facilities, and Explosive Manufacturing Facilities when located near schools, adult care homes (to be defined and added to the definitions page of the draft ordinance), and day care centers.
By consensus, the Board requested Mr. Furman to report to the Board at their February 18, 2003, meeting.
MISCELLANEOUS ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS
A. Employee Assistance Program Contract Proposal – County Manager Nelson requested that the contract for the Employee Assistance Program offered by New River Behavioral Health Care be renewed. The contract included six visits at a cost of $25 per session for each covered employee during the fiscal year.
Commissioner Honeycutt, seconded by Commissioner Blust, moved to approve the Employee Assistance Program contract from January 1, 2003, through December 31, 2003, as presented.
B. Annual Pre-Budget Retreat Proposed Agenda – County Manager Nelson presented the tentative agenda for the Annual Pre-Budget Retreat, which was scheduled for Friday evening, February 28, 2003, and Saturday morning, March 1, 2003.
C. Boards and Commissions – County Manager Nelson stated that the Board of Directors for the Boone Rural Fire Protection Service District were appointed by the Commissioners per their representative districts to coincide with their term in office. Commissioner Blust appointed David Triplett.
County Manager Nelson stated that Ms. Sue Counts, Director of Watauga County Cooperative Extension Service, had requested that a member of the Board of Commissioners be appointed to the Watauga County Cooperative Extension Advisory Leadership System Board.
Commissioner Honeycutt volunteered to serve on the Watauga County Cooperative Extension Advisory Leadership System Board.
County Manager Nelson stated that Mr. Steve Loflin was nominated to replace Mr. Fay Binning on the Recreation Commission.
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Trivette, moved to appoint Mr. Steve Loflin to the Recreation Commission replacing Mr. Fay Binning.
County Manager Nelson stated that the Town of Seven Devils nominated Ms. Kathy Copley to serve on the Recreation Commission. This was the first reading for Ms. Copley and therefore action was not required until the next meeting.
The Board agreed to waive the local policy requiring two readings of nominations before a vote. Commissioner Honeycutt, seconded by Vice-Chairman Hodges, moved to appoint Ms. Kathy Copley to the Recreation Commission.
County Manager Nelson stated that the following recommendations were made for appointment to the Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC):
Mr. G.W. Barker (WATA) representing Media and replacing Mr. Justin Grimes
Mr. David Tucker (USDA) representing Agriculture and replacing Mr. Al Childers
Mr. Steve LaPointe (Fire/EM) as Chairman replacing Mr. Jason Williams
This was the first reading of the above recommendations and therefore no Board action was required until the next meeting.
D. Announcements – County Manager Nelson announced upcoming meetings that Board members may wish to attend.
At 9:51 A.M., Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to enter Closed Session to discuss Personnel Matters, per G. S. 143-318-11(a)(6)
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to resume the open meeting at 10:05 A.M.
ASSIGNMENT OF PARKS AND RECREATION INTERIM DIRECTOR
Commissioner Blust, seconded by Commissioner Trivette, moved to appoint Stephen Poulos as Interim Director of Watauga County Parks and Recreation with a 15% increase in salary. The appointment is to commence on the date that current Director, Ms. Deb Wynne, was called to National Guard active duty or the date of her retirement. The appointment was to continue until Ms. Wynne returned to work or until a permanent replacement is appointed. (Ms. Wynne announced her retirement effective March 31, 2003.)
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to adjourn the meeting at 10:05 P.M.
James Coffey, Chairman
Anita J. Fogle, Clerk to the Board