WATAUGA COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
TUESDAY, JUNE 17, 2003
The Watauga County Board of Commissioners held, on Tuesday, June 17, 2003, a regular meeting at 7:00 P.M. in the Commissioners Meeting Room of the Watauga County Courthouse.
PRESENT: James Coffey, Chairman
Jimmy Hodges, Vice-Chairman
David Blust, Commissioner
Keith Honeycutt, 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 regular meeting to order at 7:02 P.M. welcoming those in attendance. A moment of silence was observed.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Chairman Coffey called for additions and/or corrections to the June 2, 2003 regular meeting minutes.
Commissioner Honeycutt, seconded by Vice-Chairman Hodges, moved to approve the June 2, 2003 regular meeting minutes as presented.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Chairman Coffey called for additions or corrections to the June 17, 2003 agenda.
County Manager Nelson requested to add after number eleven on the agenda a Subdivision Performance Guarantee and a discussion on the High Country Council of Governments Comprehensive Economic Development Plan under Miscellaneous Administrative Matters.
Commissioner Blust, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to approve the June 17, 2003 agenda as amended.
PUBLIC HEARING: TO ALLOW PUBLIC COMMENT ON CALDWELLCOUNTY’S REQUEST FOR A RESOLUTION OF SUPPORT FOR RECLASSIFICATION OF THE YADKIN RIVER WATERSHED
Chairman Coffey declared the public hearing open at 7:05 P.M. to allow for comment on the Caldwell County’s request for a resolution of support for reclassification of the Yadkin River Watershed.
Mr. Wayne Green, Ms. Deborah Greene, Mr. Dale Hayes, and Mr. Gordon Harris spoke.
Mr. Joe Furman, Planning and Inspections Director, stated that ultimately the General Assembly determined stream classifications. Mr. Furman stated that the Board had four options 1) support the resolution as drafted by Caldwell County, 2) object to the reclassification, 3) support the resolution at a lower classification, or 4) take no action.
There being no further public comment, Chairman Coffey declared the public hearing closed at 7:39 P.M.
Commissioner Blust, seconded by Commissioner Trivette, moved to not support the resolution due to adequate protection under the current subdivision ordinance.
TRANSFER STATION/MAINTENANCE FACILITY PROJECT UPDATE
Ms. Lynn Croy of Draper Aden Associates reviewed the cost projections and construction schedule for the County Sanitation Department’s transfer station and maintenance facility. Ms. Croy also reviewed drawings of elevations, floor plans, and the master plan of the site.
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Blust, moved to approve the design and to initiate the bid process.
LAW ENFORCEMENT/DETENTION CENTER PROJECT UPDATE
Mr. Jack Hemphill reviewed the cost projections and construction schedule of the new law enforcement center and emergency management/dispatch center. Mr. Hemphill reviewed drawings of elevations and an overall site plan of the project. Mr. Hemphill stated that the review did not include the necessary renovations to the rear of the courthouse to include a detention holding area. A decision on the addition to the Courthouse needed to be made in the not to distant future.
Commissioner Blust, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to give approval to enter into the final design phase of the project.
AVERY COUNTYPROPOSAL FOR EMS SERVICE TO BEECHMOUNTAIN
Mr. Robert Wiseman, Avery County Manager, stated that he was present on behalf of the Avery County Board of Commissioners regarding EMS service for the Avery portion of Seven Devils and the Watauga portion of Beech Mountain. Mr. Wiseman stated that the Avery Board did not accept the offer made by Watauga County. The offer by Watauga County would have continued the cooperative arrangement for each county to serve a portion of the other and Avery County to be paid a $500 per transport subsidy for the number of transports that was greater than the number provided by Watauga County.
The Board agreed to continue to work toward a resolution through a committee comprised of the County Managers, EMS representatives, Mountain Alliance representatives, and Boards of Commissioners representatives.
A. Fiscal Year 2004 Contracts – Mr. Chris Turner, AppalCART Director, reviewed the Fiscal Year 2004 contracts with the Watauga County Parks and Recreation and the Project on Aging. The contracts included a .50¢ per hour increase with the mileage charges having remained constant at the current levels.
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Trivette, moved to approve the AppalCART contracts with Parks and Recreation and the Project on Aging contingent upon the County Attorney’s review.
B. Progress Report on Site Selection for a New AppalCART Facility – Mr. Turner reviewed progress on finding a new site for a proposed AppalCART facility. Mr. Turner proposed to borrow the required local match for the new facility from the NCDOT State Infrastructure Bank. Payments on the debt would be incorporated into AppalCART’s operational expenses with the local share to be divided among Appalachian State University at 77.1%, Watauga County at 12.4%, and the Town Boone at 10.4%. Mr. Turner’s proposed increase for Watauga County was $6,944 for the next ten years to cover the debt service on the local match. Mr. Turner also presented a draft resolution which would give AppalCART permission to procure property in its name for the new facility.
After discussion, the Board, by consensus, agreed to table further discussion until a future meeting.
COVE CREEK PRESERVATION AND DEVELOPMENT LOAN REPAYMENT PROPOSAL
Ms. Amy Shelton, Chair of Cove Creek Preservation and Development (CCP&D), requested permission from the Board to grade an area in front of the gym of the old Cove Creek School building to build a walkway to the field from the school.
By consensus, the Board agreed to grant permission for the walkway to be built contingent upon Robert Marsh’s approval and upon all building codes being met.
Ms. Shelton requested a modified repayment schedule of a loan from the County Economic Development funds. CCP&D requested to pay $25,000 in June of 2003 and requested the County forgive part of the loan in lieu of the building improvements that the group had made to the building.
Commissioner Honeycutt, seconded by Vice-Chairman Hodges, moved to accept the $25,000 payment for the current year and requested that CCP&D come to the Board next year with any additional proposal they may have.
REVIEW AND REQUESTED APPROVAL OF WATAUGA COUNTY EMS PLAN
Mr. Reggie Hassler, Chairman of the Watauga County EMS Advisory Committee, stated that G. S. 143-517 required that all counties develop plans to insure that Emergency Medical Services were provided to its citizens. The Watauga County EMS Advisory Board, in conjunction with the required medical supervision from the County’s medical director, Dr. Alan Brandon, had been working on this plan for over a year. Mr. Craig Sullivan, Watauga Medics Director and EMS Advisory Committee member, along with a committee made up of representatives from the rescue squads and first responders had worked to develop this plan.
Commissioner Blust, Seconded by Commissioner Trivette, moved to accept and approve Watauga County’s EMS System Design and Plan as presented by Mr. Hassler.
Finance Director, Doris Isaacs, presented the following budget amendments for Board approval:
Account # Description Debit Credit
173492-336000 NCDOC-CDBG $400,000
174920-449900 Residence Rehab $186,000
174920-449901 Clearance Activities $8,500
174920-449902 Relocation Expenses $160,000
174920-449903 Planning $3,500
174920-449904 Code Enforcement $2,000
174920-449905 Grant Administration $40,000
The amendment recognized grant funds awarded through the NC Department of Commerce to relocate or rehabilitate residences of qualified individuals.
Account # Description Debit Credit
433300-361000 NC Parks Trust Fund $250,000
433980-398121 Transfer From Cap. Reserve $415,000
436130-457000 Capital Outlay-Land $417,750
436130-457001 Capital Outlay-Land Improve. $247,250
The amendment recognized grant funds and funds transferred from Capital Reserve to begin the Brookshire Park project.
Account # Description Debit Credit
283101-312201 Taxes Ad Valorem-02-03 $3,200
284340-469901 Pay. To Fire Dist.-Foscoe $3,200
283101-312206 Taxes Ad Valorem-02-03 $1,500
284340-469906 Pay. To Fire Dist.-Zionville $1,500
283101-312209 Taxes Ad Valorem-02-03 $2,000
284340-469909 Pay. To Fire Dist.-M. Camp $2,000
283101-312207 Taxes Ad Valorem-02-03 $2,500
284340-469907 Pay. To Fire Dist.-Cove Creek $2,500
283101-312210 Taxes Ad Valorem-02-03 $2,000
284340-469910 Pay. To Fire Dist.-Deep Gap $2,000
283101-312002 Taxes Ad Valorem-02-03 $6,200
284340-469912 Pay. To Fire Dist.-B. Rock $6,200
243101-312010 Taxes Ad Valorem-02-03 $3,200
244340-469905 Pay. To Fire Dist.-Creston $3,200
The amendment recognized additional fire tax district revenue and payment to volunteer fire departments.
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to approve the budget amendments as presented.
SUBDIVISION PERFORMANCE GUARANTEE
Mr. Joe Furman presented a letter of credit that served as a performance guarantee for the completion of road improvements for the Waterstone development. This was pursuant to Section 92 of the subdivision regulations.
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Honeycutt, moved to approve the subdivision performance guarantee as presented by Mr. Furman.
MISCELLANEOUS ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS
A. Health Department Change Order – County Manager Nelson stated that a reductive change order in the amount of $1,200 was necessitated by the work done by the Watauga County Maintenance Department as recommended by Robert Marsh in waxing the tile floors in the new Health Department building prior to occupancy.
Vice-Chairman Hodges, seconded by Commissioner Blust, moved to approve the change order for the new Health Department Building as presented by the County Manager.
B. Discussion of Citizens’ Request for Reconsideration of Long Ridge Mobile Home Park Approval – County Manager Nelson presented a letter from citizens regarding the Long Ridge Mobile Home Park which requested that the Board reconsider the decision to affirm the Planning Board’s approval of the project. County Attorney Eggers-Gryder stated that she stood behind her opinion of the June 2, 2003, Board meeting.
C. Boards and Commissions – County Manager Nelson gave a second reading of the recommendations from Mr. Alex Jernigan, Regional Ombudsman, to reappoint Mr. Ted Hagaman to the Watauga County Long Term Care Joint Community Advisory Committee.
Commissioner Blust, seconded by Commissioner Trivette, moved to appoint Ms. Evelina Idol and Mr. Ted Hagaman to the Watauga County Long Term Care Joint Community Advisory Committee.
The County Manager gave a first reading of five recommendations for the Juvenile Crime Prevention Council (Wendy Tonker, Melissa Johnson, Celeste Holland, Karee Teague, and David Swartz). The Board appoints seven members to the Council but had not yet submitted recommendations for two of the appointments.
This was the first reading of the above recommendations and therefore no action was required until the next meeting.
F. Announcements – County Manager Nelson announced upcoming meetings and events.
The County Manager discussed Senate Bill 672 regarding Public Health reorganization.
By consensus, the Board directed the Manager to draft a letter to the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners stating opposition to Senate Bill 672.
The Manager discussed House Bill 541 regarding the provision of Medicaid relief for the counties of North Carolina.
By consensus, the Board directed the Manager to draft a letter to legislators in support of House Bill 451.
The Manager presented information on ADM School Capital funds.
By consensus, the Board directed the Manager to draft a letter to our Representatives thanking them for having included the ADM School Capital Funds in the state budget for Fiscal Year 2004
The County Manager stated that he had received easement documents from the Town of Boone on June 6 and had delivered them to Ms. Darnell on June 9, 2003. Ms. Darnell had asked that he return the week of June 23rd for her answer.
The County Manager stated that he had received a letter from Mr. Rick Herndon, Director of Planning and Development at the High Country Council of Governments, regarding the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS). The Board directed the Manager to add to the wish list for Watauga County.
The following spoke during public comment: Ms. Deborah Greene, Mr. Dale Hayes, and Ms. Pam Williamson.
Commissioner Blust, seconded by Commissioner Trivette, moved to adjourn the meeting at 9:41 P.M.
James Coffey, Chairman
Anita J. Fogle, Clerk to the Board