Board of Supervisors - September 1, 2005 Workshop Meeting

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The Wise County Board of Supervisors met in a Workshop meeting on Thursday, September 1, 2005 at 6:00 p.m. in the Appalachia High School Auditorium.  The following were present:

Honorable Fred A. Luntsford - Chairman

Honorable Ronnie Shortt - Vice-Chairman

Honorable Robert R. Adkins

Honorable Steve Bates

Honorable Virginia Meador

Honorable John W. Peace II

Honorable Leland Branham

Honorable Robert Robbins - members of said Board and

Glen A. Skinner - County Administrator

Shannon C. Scott - Assistant County Administrator

Karen T. Mullins - County Attorney

Annette Underwood - Executive Secretary



T. G. Branson led the Board in prayer.



All led in the pledge of allegiance to the flag.



For review and approval.



The following items were presented for addition to the agenda:

Add to Roads and Highways

(1) Resolution "Watch for Children at Play" signs

Add to consent Agenda Under Budget Amendment

No. 20:  Source of revenue - ARC Grant - $50,000.00
               Virginia Tourism Authority Grant - $50,000.00

            Expenditures - Virginia Heritage Music Trail - The Crooked Road ($87,830.00)

Add to new Business

(1) Ordinance Creating Wise County Office for Economic Development

It was the consensus of the Board to add these items to the agenda.



General Registrar Tom Chester presented to the Board information regarding the new voting machines and a brief demonstration on the use of the machine.  He explained the sensitivity of the machine to temperature and other climatic logical extremes.  Mr. Chester expressed his appreciation to the Wise County School Board for making available an excellent storage facility for the voting machines.  He further noted the possibility for the need of a generator or other emergency back-up on election day should there be a power outage at one or more precincts.

Mr. Chester explained that training sessions have been held for those individuals assisting at the polls and it has been suggested that a video be made showing the operation of the new machine and have it shown on Channel 97 to further educate the public.

Sometime in the near future, Mr. Chester said he would need a letter from the Board declaring the old voting machines as surplus property to allow proper disposal of the machines.



Kristine K. Morris, MRC Coordinator, stated that the Southwest Virginia Medical Reserve Corps is a cadre of volunteer health care professionals and community members trained to respond to any type of public heath disaster that may affect the communities of southwestern Virginia.  The MRC will assist citizens in the regions of the Cumberland Plateau, LENOWISCO and Mount Rogers by responding to medical emergencies such as bio-terrorism incidents, large communicable disease outbreaks and natural disasters.  There is initial MRC orientation and annual training, and opportunities for elective training and drills available throughout the year.



Jim O'Quinn, Project Coordinator for VCEDA Board, presented a power point presentation regarding the proposed Coal-Fired Power Plant development in Southwest Virginia.  He reviewed the benefits of the new coal plant regarding increased jobs, boost in the economy and economic development as well as tax revenues.



A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizen's comments regarding six (6)  proposed E-911 road name additions.

There was no public opposition to the proposed road names.

There being no comments, the public hearing was closed.



Frank Kibler, representing LENOWISCO Planning District, provided information regarding the LENOWISCO Comprehensive Hazard Mitigation Plan.  The Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP), administered by FEMA, provides grants to States and local governments to implement long-term hazard mitigation measures after a major disaster declaration.  The purpose of the program is to reduce the loss of life and property due to natural disasters and to enable mitigation measures to be implemented during the immediate recovery from a disaster.

HMGP funds may be used to fund projects that will reduce or eliminate the losses from future disasters.  Projects must provide a long-term solution to a problem, and a project's potential savings must be more than the cost of implementing the project (cost-benefit analysis).  Funds may be used to protect either public or private property or to purchase property that has been subjected to, or is in danger of, repetitive damage.

Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) chose to approach plan development in the western part of the state at PDC level.  PDC's were encouraged to develop regional plans including district localities.

LENOWISCO received $100,000 in FEMA and VDEM funding, to be matched by $35,000 in local cash/in-kind from three Counties and City.  Wise County has participated both in plan development and with local funding.

Dewberry has been selected to develop LENOWISCO's plan.

A full draft of the plan has been forwarded to VDEM and FEMA for review, and LENOWISCO has recently been advised of the Plan's approval.

Mr. Kibler noted that the Plan is being presented to the counties and City for adoption during the month of September.  He asked the Board to favorably consider the Resolution Adopting the LENOWISCO Comprehensive Hazard Mitigation Plan, which will complete the participation process.

Larry Bush, a resident of the Exeter area, voiced his opposition to re-mining in Wise County.  He expounded on the fact that early strip mining has made our county a wasteland by destroying our trees, polluting our streams and air.  He asked the Board to consider adopting a resolution opposing re-mining in Wise County.

Pete Ramey, a resident of the Exeter area, voiced his opposition to mountain top removal mining and the lack of environmental restrictions on re-mining.  He stated that all our natural resources are being depleted, the blasting is damaging homes and schools, and the dust is polluting the air and endangering citizen's health.  He asked for the Board's assistance in controlling the proposed re-mining.

There being no further comments, the public expression period was closed.



Highway Resident Engineer T. G. Branson provided the Board with an update on construction throughout the County.

Board members provided needs in their districts



(1) Set public hearing (6:00 p.m. October 6) on a request for a Special Use Permit to establish a family cemetery

(2) Set public hearing (6:00 p.m. October 6) on seven (7) proposed E-911 road name additions

(3) Budget Amendments

No. 12:  Source of revenue-Miscellaneous revenue, Sale of impounded cow - $125.00 Expenditure-(3501) Animal Shelter (505105) Animal Supplies ($125.00)

No. 13: Source of revenue-Miscellaneous Revenue-Sale of equipment to Carter Machinery, Inc. $5,000.00 - Expenditure (4204) Refuse Collection (507010) Capital Outlay $5,000.00

No. 14: Source of revenue-Prior year fund balances - $1,500.00 Expenditure (1204) Legal Services (505401) office supplies - $1,500.00

No. 15: Source of revenue - Prior year fund balance - $4,044.00 Expenditure (1204) Legal Services (505308) General Liability Ins. ($4,044.00)

No. 16: Source of revenue - Prior year fund balance ($45,169.20)Expenditure (9400) E-911 County Dispatch (503005) Maintenance Service Contracts ($45,169.20)

No. 17: Source of revenue - Prior year fund balance $1,500.00 Expenditure (3501) Animal Control (503004) Repair & Maintenance ($1,500.00)

No. 18: Source of revenue - Prior year fund balance -($9,567.65)Expenditure (4205) Refuse Disposal (505801) Dues & Assoc. Membership ($9,567.65)

No. 19: Source of revenue-Prior year fund balance - $8,000.00 Expenditure (1209) Commissioner of the Revenue (503005) Maintenance Service Contracts ($8,000.00)



Bill Smith, who was recently hired as Director for the Crooked Road Project, briefed the Board on his endeavors to establish this office and assuming administrative responsibilities for this regional tourism development project. Mr. Smith stated that he will be working from an office in Abingdon to allow close affiliation with Diana Blackburn, who is the director of the "Round the Mountain artisans" program for Southwest Virginia.  Abingdon is more central to the project, since it extends all the way to Franklin County on the east, and the Breaks Interstate Park at the west.

The funding source for the Crooked Road Project was discussed with the County of Wise being asked to serve as Fiscal Agent.



(1)  Resolution-Transfer of Ownership and Control of Adelphia to Comcast

(2)  Resolution Dedicating Support and Proceeds from the Sell of Surplus Vehicles

(3)  Crooked Road Project - Wise County as Fiscal Agent

(4)  Resolution - Acknowledging Past, Present, and Future of VCEDA

(5)  Memorandum of Understanding - Department of Social Services

(6)  Resolution- Adopting the LENOWISCO Hazard Mitigation Plan

(7)  Appointments



Administrator Skinner reported that Attorney Mullins is doing some research on the existing Economic Development Department and the proposal that has been put forth to create such an office.  A report will be forthcoming at the next meeting.  He explained the need to refine and focus this proposal to include a heavy dose of entrepreneurial development, assistance to existing industry and business, assistance to our municipal governments as they assist in downtown development work that is now on-going in several towns as well as a formal working relationship to both UVA-Wise and MECC, major economic drivers for our county.

He further commented that several years ago the county launched a very successful Community Certification Program that brought together several individuals to critically look at the County and what we needed to so as a community to be economically viable.  That exercise resulted in Wise County being "certified" under that particular program.  Mr. Skinner asked that the Board consider revisiting that exercise since it has been several years and again seek to identify the County's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and refine what we wish to accomplish with the economic development program. 

There were several organizations mentioned that could possibly be of assistance in using their resources to make this economic effort viable.

Robby Robbins commented that in view of New Orleans misfortune, the County should put forth some effort to assist in that crisis.



The County Administrator made a report on the following:

(1)  Custom Communications Update

(2)  The Government channel 97 can now be seen on channel 15

(3)  The School system has channel 10 in A.M.



Board members made brief comments with the following requests:

(1) The William's Road sign has been torn down and needs to be re-installed

(2) Draft a proclamation honoring Bill Robbins for his accomplishments

(3) Hold the October Workshop meeting in Coeburn

(4) Asked County Administrator to consider ways to conserve gasoline and still provide needed services



There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:10 p.m.


ATTEST:                                WISE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS


___________________            ________________________

Glen A. Skinner, Clerk                Fred A. Luntsford, Chairman

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