Board of Supervisors - July 1, 2008 Workshop Meeting

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The Wise County Board of Supervisors met in a Workshop meeting on Tuesday, July 1, 2008 at 6:00 p.m. in the Board of Supervisors meeting room located in the Wise County courthouse.  The following were present:

Honorable Robert R. Adkins – Chairman
Honorable Virginia Meador – Vice-Chair
Honorable Fred Luntsford
Honorable Ronald L. Shortt
Honorable J. H. Rivers
Honorable Dana Kilgore
Honorable Robert E. Robbins – members of said Board and
Shannon C. Scott – Assistant County Administrator
Karen T. Mullins – County Attorney
Annette Underwood – Executive Secretary


Honorable Steve Bates
Glen A. Skinner – County Administrator


T. G. Branson led in prayer.


All led in the pledge of allegiance to the flag.


The following item was reviewed for addition to the agenda:

  • Resolution authorizing the signing of checks by the Acting County Administrator effective July 23, 2008


Bill King, representing Thompson & Litton, provided a history of the Blackwood landfill regarding the bidding processes and the construction that has taken place over the years.  He noted that without landfill closure, more landfill space is required by January 1, 2010.     

Mr. King said that the closure of the landfill permanently isn’t an option he would recommend.  The cost for closure would be approximately $7 million + which would force the county to have all its garbage shipped out with no place to take its C&D waste.

The County could do a 14 acre expansion which would hold all of the county’s waste and give another eleven years of space at the current waste production rate.  This would require de-activating the transfer station.  The current contract with the company that transports the county garbage will end in 2011.  To renew this contract, the County can expect a major increase due to the rising fuel cost.  For the County to continue shipping its waste out, a six acre landfill expansion would be sufficient for C&D waste for approximately eight more years.
If the County decides to expand the landfill, the Board must allow time for design and construction of future cells.  A permit application must go to DEQ by December of this year to get the permit in time to start construction.  Construction must being in June 2009 to be completed by December 2009 since the current cell is expected to be full by the end of 2009.

With the options that are before the Board, Mr. King recommended expanding the landfill as the most economical option for the County due to the projected rising costs of fuel, and the high cost of closing the landfill.  He further suggested that the county start the permit process and hire an engineering firm for further study.

With these options before the Board and many questions to be answered, Assistant Administrator Scott suggested that the Board have a work session to discuss more fully the future of the landfill and the transfer station.  This would allow more time for questions and answers which will give the Board more insight on both the transfer station and the landfill.  He explained that the County has three (3) major items upcoming in the next twelve months which include the high schools, the ongoing sewer projects and solid waste.  All of these items being important and expensive, Mr. Scott asked the Board to gather all the information possible to give more insight on the solid waste issue before making a decision.

It was agreed that the Board have a work session on Thursday, July 10 at 12:00 Noon in the conference room of the County Administrator’s Office to discuss the future of the landfill.


A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizens’ input on the proposed addition of seven (7) E-911 road names.

There was no one to speak in opposition to the proposed names.

There being no public comments the public hearing was closed.


A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizens’ comments on the proposed amendment to the Service Availability Ordinance #2-2006.  The following individuals spoke regarding the proposed amendment:

Paul Profitt, resident of the Wise/Norton Road: 

  • Opposed the non-user fee 

  • People on fixed income could not afford to pay this fee

Laura Miller, resident of Wise:

  • Non-user fee for new customers only

  • Do not force individuals to hook on if their septic system is working 

  • Increase in water bill would be more than those on fixed income could afford

  • Charge according to consumption

Jerry Hall, resident of Josephine:

  • Has good septic does not need sewer service

  • Paid for water from PSA and never received a hook up due to rocky area

  • Did not get money back for approximately three or four years later

  • Opposed Non-user fee

Attorney Mullins explained that State and Federal agencies will not grant funding for sewer infrastructure if the Non-user fee is not in place.  This fee is a yearly fee and cost is based upon the cost of the project.

Wayne Watts explained the mechanics of the grant funding noting that the Non-use fee is a requirement for receiving federal and state grant funding.

Hugh Kiser, a resident of the Esserville area:

  • Opposed the mandatory sewer hook up

  • Those having good septic systems do not need sewer service

  • The elderly on fixed income cannot afford the sewer service

Shane Fields, a resident of Josephine: 

  • Voiced his support for doing away with straight piping

  • Cleaning up the rivers is necessary

  • Opposed the Non-use fee for those not needing sewer service

  • The elderly cannot afford the extra cost

Evelyn Adams, a resident of the Stephens area:

  • Opposed Non-use fee

  • Those on fixed income cannot afford extra cost

  • The elderly must do extra work to make ends meet without additional expense

Harold Greear, a resident of Mill Creek:

  • Suggested doing a survey on those that would benefit from the sewer service and those that would not

  • There must be a fairness in cost to customers

  • Use VCEDA funding for sewer installation

  • Keep public apprised of projects such as this in advance

  • Post pone action on the sewer for further study

There being no further public comments, the public hearing was closed.

Mr. Scott noted that from the comments being made, the Board of Supervisors need to have a day time work session on sewer to better prepare the Board members to answer questions of their constituents regarding this suggested mandatory sewer and availability ordinance.  The Board discussed possible dates.


A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizens comments regarding a proposed amendment to Building Code Ordinance #2-1975.

There being no public comments on the proposed amendment, the public hearing was closed.


There was no one to speak during public expression.


Highway Residency Administrator T. G. Branson noted that work is continuing on various projects within the County.

Board members provided Mr. Branson with needs in their districts for VDOT review and response.


  • First quarter appropriations

  • Set public hearings:

    1. August 7, 2008 @ 6:00 p.m. on a proposed Conditional Change of Zoning

    2. August 7, 2008 @ 6:00 p.m. on proposed rezoning


Dennis Horton representing the Junction Center for Independent Living, provided Board members a handout on requirements for the Universal Design in building construction.  Mr. Horton explained that the proposed resolution is asking for the Board’s support to promote the Universal Design concepts in building construction to create housing that will be accessible for those individuals with physical challenges.


  • Pump & Haul Permit for Shaw Group and Dominion Resources

  • Set public hearing (August 7, 2008 @ 6:00 p.m.) on a proposed ordinance approving a tax exempt status for HIS Ministries.

  • Annual Maintenance Contract on courthouse tower clock

  • Authorize Treasurer to destroy paid tax tickets on Personal Property & Real Estate  (January 2002 thru December 2002)

  • Authorize receipt of Civil War Gun & items donated to Wise County courthouse

  • Budget amendments #88 thru #90

  • Appointments

  • Closed Session (Personnel)


Assistant County Administrator Shannon Scott explained that the Board previously authorized and advertised for architectural services to assist the County with the “Needs Assessment” for the interior of the courthouse.  The County is now in receipt of those RFP’s.

Mr. Scott asked the Board to appoint a committee to review any and all architectural RFP’s for the Needs Assessment for the courthouse interior.  This committee could also include a Board member.  He recommended the following individuals to sit on that committee:

  • Robert M. Mullins – Building Official

  • Arthur Sturgill – Maintenance Supervisor

  • Carl R. Snodgrass -  Experienced with buildings

  • Karen Mullins – County Attorney

  • Shannon C. Scott – Assistant County Administrator

Chairman Adkins asked Supervisor Robbins to serve on the Needs Assessment Committee.


Mr. Scott asked that after the appointed committee has reviewed the RFP responses for architectural services for the courthouse interior needs, that the Board authorize him, the members of the committee along with Attorney Mullins, and a representative of T&L to negotiate a successful price with the chosen architect.

He further asked that when and if a price can be successfully negotiated, that he be authorized to sign a contract which would allow the work to begin as soon as possible.

Mr. Scott was asked to bring the negotiated price back to the Board for consideration prior to any contractual commitment being made.


Mr. Scott stated that the Board at the May 08 meeting authorized a contract to be signed with Thompson & Litton for the architectural work on the courthouse exterior.  The next step is to select a contractor to work with Thompson & Litton.

The request for RFP’s from contractors was advertised with several inquiries being made but  only one contractor attended the pre-RFP conference.

Mr. Scott asked the Board to appoint the following committee of which a Board member can also be appointed, to review the RFP’s for the exterior courthouse work:

  • Robert R. Mullins – Building Official

  • Tony Honeycutt – Assistant Maintenance Superintendent

  • Carl R. Snodgrass – Experienced with buildings

  • Karen T. Mullins – County Attorney

  • Architectural representative from Thompson & Litton

Mr. Scott noted that he would like to take advantage of the summer months to get the outside work started and completed.

Chairman Adkins asked Supervisor Luntsford to serve on this committee


Mr. Scott asked that after review of all RFP’s for the above referenced work, and after a contractor has been chosen with which to negotiate, that the members of the committee along with the County Attorney and the Assistant County Administrator be authorized to enter into a negotiated contract with the chosen contractor after proper ranking and negotiating has been completed.
After discussion on the courthouse exterior project, it was the consensus of the Board to authorize the committee, the County Attorney and the Assistant County Administrator to negotiate a contract with the contractor on the exterior of the courthouse and report back to the Board with recommendations for price consideration prior to any contractual commitments being made.


Board members expressed their appreciation to those citizens attending the meeting at the J. J. Kelly High School regarding the State Air Pollution Control Board public comment periods for or against Dominion Resources Virginia City Hybrid Energy Center.

Board comments were as follows:

Supervisor Robbins:

  • Power plant was given permit which will bring revenue into the county for schools and other major projects that is needed throughout the county

  • Funding in the amount of $55.7 million has been awarded for the Dental School

  • Retirement of Charles McConnell from Redevelopment & Housing Authority

  • Spay and neutering clinic being provided for cats by PAWS

Supervisor Kilgore:

  • The County has a problem and a need which is sewer infrastructure.  Straight piping needs to be eliminated, and sewer infrastructure is needed for land development for businesses and homes.  There are three (3) options in which this can be accomplished:

    1. It can be ignored and do nothing which will eliminate future land development, and proper sewer service will not be available for failing septic systems

    2. Real estate taxes can be raised county wide or

    3. This ordinance can be adopted which will allow for federal and state grants to help with financing the sewer infrastructure

Ms. Kilgore stated that even though the Board is not in favor of the Non-user fee, it is a requirement for receiving grant funding.  It’s the Board’s understanding that this fee will be based on each project cost and will not exceed $50.00 per year within any one project.  It is not the Board’s intent to place a hardship on anyone.

Supervisor Rivers:

  • Keep the citizens informed as much as possible on County projects

  • Without sewer the County cannot move forward

  • Options for paying for the infrastructure needs to be considered

  • The permitting of the power plant is a good thing for Wise County

  • Fourth of July celebration at Bullitt Park

Supervisor Meador:

  • Ask citizens to participate in the Fourth of July celebrations within the county

  • Ask that the County Administrator’s position be posted in the publication for VACo

Supervisor Shortt:

  • The power plant coming to Wise County is a good thing

  • Dominion will be a good corporate citizen

  • Appreciated citizens’ input in the public hearing for the Service Availability Ordinance

  • Sewer is an important issue and needs to be addressed in the most economical way that would benefit the County and its citizens without making a hardship on anyone

Chairman Adkins:

  • Spoke briefly on the Dominion project


There being no further business the meeting adjourned at 8:25 p.m.

ATTEST:                                              WISE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERIVSORS


_______________________________            ______________________________________
Glen A. Skinner, Clerk                           Robert R. Adkins, Chairman

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