Board of Supervisors - November 12, 2015 Regular Meeting

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 The Wise County Board of Supervisors met in a Regular Meeting on Thursday, November 12, 2015 at 6:00 PM at the School Board Education Center.  The following members were present:

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

PRAYER

Robby Robbins led in prayer.

PLEDGE

All led in the pledge of allegiance to the flag.

MINUTES

A motion was made by Virginia Meador, seconded by Robby Robbins, to approve the minutes as presented.  The motion was unanimously approved.

AGENDA

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Robby Robbins, to approve the agenda as presented to include item in red.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  PARENT ADVOCACY & ADVISORY COUNCIL (PAAC)

Charlotte Barkley, representing PAAC, addressed the Board regarding the proposed closing of SWVA Training Center in Hillsville, Virginia that was established in 1975 to house individuals with intellectual disabilities.   A ten minute video giving a brief overview of the center with several individuals being shown as to their physical challenges was provided to give the Board a better understanding of the need for keeping the center open.  She explained that most residents in the Training Center have serious intellectual disabilities often accompanied by severe medical or behavioral problems, which in most cases require 24/7 care.  Moving the residents from familiar surroundings will have a negative impact on them, which has caused family members much concern if the residents are forced to leave the center.  This would not only be a challenge to the community but also a great loss of jobs.  Ms. Barkley asked the Board to consider adopting a resolution of support to keep the Center open. 

WISE COUNTY HOLIDAY ORNAMENT

Tourism Director Michael Wampler addressed the Board regarding the newly handcrafted holiday ornament for the Governor’s Mansion.  Earlier this year VACo submitted responses from County Administrators to assist in developing Christmas ornaments that will be used to decorate the tree in the ballroom of the Governor’s Mansion.   VACo asked that a creative way to showcase something unique about our community and that a local artisan handcraft the ornament.

 The High Knob Recreation Area of the Jefferson National Forest – Clinch Ranger District was the theme chosen to showcase our region.  The ornament submitted for Wise County was handcrafted and donated by Gary and Rhonda Wampler, local artisans who reside in Norton. 

IN RE:  SCHOOL FINANCING UPDATE

David Rose and Dan Siegel, representing Davenport and Company, provided the Board with an update on the Series 2012 Literary Loan Anticipation Note Rollover Refunding Opportunity.

In October and November 2011, Davenport assisted the County in the issuance of approximately $59.3M for the County’s School Construction Program with an approximate 5 year maturity, and also provided sufficient time and flexibility for the County to receive permanent 2% subsidized Literary Loan financing from the Commonwealth with the understanding that it would take in excess of 2 to 3 years to receive the permanent 2% funding.   In December 2012, the County refinanced the 2011 Notes through the IDA’s issuance of the $14.6M Taxable Literary Loan Anticipation Notes, which enabled the County to lower the interest rate on the Interim Financing from 3.00% to an all-in interest rate of 2.13%, and allowed the County to maintain the ability to redeem the 2012 Notes at any time without penalty beginning February 1, 2015.

The Department of Education recently restored funding to the Literary Loan Program.  The  Commonwealth’s budget for FY 2016 includes an appropriation of approximately $50M for the funding of Literary Loans.  The County could expect to receive its permanent 2% Literary Loan funding by FY 2019.

With the 2012 Notes scheduled to mature on February 1, 2017, the County, at the latest, would need to “roll” the 2012 Notes for approximately 2 to 3 years in order to safely ensure that the Interim Financing’s maturity coincides with the expected receipt of permanent Literary Loan funding.

Davenport recommends that the County move proactively to take advantage of the currently favorable interest rate environment and pursue the opportunity to “roll” the 2012 Notes in the short term (the “Rollover Refunding Opportunity”)

The current all-in interest rate on the 2012 Notes is 2.13%.  Davenport believes that, in today’s favorable interest rate environment, the County could potentially secure a similar interest rate.

The County could pursue the Rollover Refunding Opportunity through a “No Obligation Approach”.  Davenport, on behalf of the County, would distribute a RFP to solicit competitive financing proposals from local, regional, and national banking institutions, which would in no way obligate the County to move forward with the Opportunity, nor does it cost anything to send out the RFP.  Davenport and Sands Anderson would work “at risk” meaning both parties would be entitled to compensation only in the event of a successful transaction. 

Mr. Rose stated that he and Mr. Siegel would follow up with the Board at its December meeting as to what action the Board would like to take.

IN RE:  COUNTY FINANCIAL UPDATE

Treasurer Delores Smith gave a power point presentation on the decline in tax assessments, which has caused a decrease in revenue as projected in the current budget.  She provided a chart showing figures for tax years 2013 – 2015 on various categories.  In some categories, it shows that recent collections have been better than in past collections.  The chart showing how much taxes had been levied in the various categories of real estate, personal property, mobile homes, merchants capital, and machinery and tools, were reviewed and discussed.   She pointed out that machinery and tools tax levy has fallen $1.65M since 2013.  The assessment in 2013 was $3,384,983 and $1,727,467 in 2015.  In the three years noted, Wise County’s cash and investments position dropped from $45.476M in 2013 to $24.5M at this point in time.  She further noted that this reflects money coming in and going out for new school construction.

Finance Administrator David Cox provided a power point presentation on Revenue and Expenditures with an unfavorable projection on budgeted revenue at this point.  He noted the following concerns for FY 2017:

  • Continued decline in assessed tax base

  • Year to year declining revenues

  • Decline in coal severance

  • Regional Jail cost

  • Request for more fire and EMS funding

  • Increase in Composite Index

  • Comprehensive Services Act – Cost increases

  • Social Services Cost

  • State mandated costs

  • Other cost increases

The following recommendations were made to assist with increased cost:

  • Have Departments  begin planning for different levels of possible cuts (2% - 5%)

  • Cuts by departments in current & prior years be directly factored in to any FY 2017 cuts

  • Complete analysis in conjunction with Schools Finance Director on possible state & Federal cuts to education

  • Maintain hiring freeze

  • Prioritize & review all discretionary funding

  • Plan Budget Workshop in January 2016 to review all departments

Mr. Cox provided a list of goals and recommendations that he felt would help reduce and control spending.  He noted that economic development is crucial to maintain tax base and strategic planning is crucial for moving Wise County forward.

Supervisor Rivers asked Mr. Cox to do an analysis on travel expenses as it relates to mileage and fuel cost.  He also asked that Haz-mat be considered as a possible budget item due to the unforeseen financial struggles that has been brought on with the collapse of the training center building.

IN RE:  CONSENT AGENDA

A motion was made by J. H. Rivers, seconded by Dana Kilgore, to approve the consent agenda as follows:
 
IN RE:  RESOLUTION HONORING MASTER GARDNERS

Approved the resolution recognizing the Wise County Master Gardner Program for its success and honor the 5 Master Gardner volunteers who have been identified by Virginia Tech

IN RE:  RODA, OSAKA & STONEGA  ADMINISTRATIVE AGREEMENT

Authorized the execution of the Administrative Agreement for the Roda, Osaka, & Stonega Phase 1 Sewer Project

IN RE:  RODA, OSAKA & STONEGA ARC GRANT AGREEMENT

Authorized the execution of the ARC Grant Agreement for the Roda, Osaka & Stonega Phase 1 Sewer Project

IN RE:  RODA, OSAKA & STONEGA CDBG GRANT AGREEMENT

Authorized the execution of the CDBG Grant Agreement for the Roda, Osaka & stonega Phase 1 Sewer Project

IN RE:  RESOLUTION FOR COMPLIANCE ON THE RODA, OSAKA & STONEGA SEWER PROJECT PHASE II

Approved the resolution for compliance on the Roda, Osaka, & Stonega Phase II Sewer Project

RESOLUTION #               -2015

(Said resolution is on file in the County Administrator’s Office)

IN RE:  RODA, OSAKE & STONEGA ARC GRANT AGREEMENT PHASE 11 SEWER PROJECT

Authorized execution of ARC Grant Agreement for the Roda, Osake, & Stonega Phase II Sewer Project

The motion to approve the consent agenda was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  RESOLUTION MORAL OBLIGATION SUPPORT AGREEMENT –BANNER-BULL RUN PROJECT

A motion was made by Dana Kilgore, seconded by J. H. Rivers, to table the resolution approving a moral obligation support agreement with the PSA and related matters for the issuance of the water and sewer revenue bond until the December meeting.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  RESOLUTION OF SUPPORT FOR PAAC

Supervisor Kilgore made a motion to table the resolution of support as requested by the Parent Advocacy & Advisory Council (PAAC) for more information since this was a late addition to the agenda.  J. H. Rivers seconded the motion.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  ORDINANCE – TAX EXEMPT STATUS FOR HEALTH WAGON

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Steve Bates, to set a public hearing on December 10, 2015 at 6:00 PM to receive citizens’ comments on a proposed Tax Exempt Ordinance for the Health Wagon.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  RESOLUTION OPPOSING ODP RATE INCREASE

A motion was made by Robby Robbins, seconded by J. H. Rivers, to approve the resolution opposing a rate increase by ODP.  The motion was unanimously approved.

RESOLUTION #           -2015

(Said resolution is on file in the County Administrator’s Office)

IN RE:  PERSONNEL POLICY AMENDMENT

Finance Administrator Cox explained to the Board that as he continues to evaluate options to reduce County expenditures, he recommended that the Board amend the County Personnel Policy to eliminate the annual buyback of sick leave days.  Employees will still accrue sick leave days for use as provided for in the Personnel Policy and all other provisions of the policy would remain unchanged.

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Dana Kilgore, to amend the County’s Personnel Policy by eliminating the annual buyback of sick leave days as recommended by the Finance Administrator.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  BUDGET AMENDMENTS

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford,  seconded by Dana Kilgore, to approve budget amendment #5 as presented.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  APPOINTMENT  - BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS

A motion was made by Steve Bates, seconded by Bob Adkins, to recommend to the Circuit Court Judge that Bill Wampler fill the unexpired term of Otho Craft on the Board of Zoning Appeals.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  APPOINTMENT – BUILDING CODE & APPEALS BOARD

A motion was made by Dana Kilgore, seconded by Robby Robbins, to re-appoint Jimmy Hawkins to the Building Code and Appeals Board.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  APPOINTMENT – REDEVELOPMENT AND HOUSING AUTHORITY

A motion was made by Robby Robbins, seconded by Dana Kilgore, to appoint Helen Markham to fill the unexpired term of John Markham on the Redevelopment and Housing Authority.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  CLOSE SESSION

A motion was made by Virginia Meador, seconded by Robby Robbins, to go into close session as permitted by the Code of Virginia per the following Code Sections:
                Section 2.2-3711 (A)(6)  Investing of public funds
                                          (A)(7)  Consultation with legal counsel
                                          (A)(1)  Personnel

The motion was unanimously approved.

After closed session, a motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Robby Robbins, to reconvene the regular meeting.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  RESOLUTION CERTIFICATION FOR CLOSE MEETING

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by J. H. Rivers, to approve the resolution certifying that only public business matters lawfully exempted from open meeting requirements as were identified in the motion convening the closed meeting were discussed or heard by the Board of Supervisors.  The motion was unanimously approved by roll call vote.

RESOLUTION #          -2015

(Said resolution is on file in the County Administrator’s Office)

IN RE:  MICRONICS TECHNOLOGY

A motion was made by J. H. Rivers, seconded by Dana Kilgore, to approve the letter of intent with Micronics Technology for the commitment for development with Wise County per letter as amended.  The motion was unanimously approved.

BOARD COMMENTS

There were brief comments from Board members.

ADJOURN

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by  Ronnie Shortt, to adjourn the meeting at 9:44 PM.  The motion was unanimously approved.

ATTEST:                                                                   WISE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

 

__________________________________                     _______________________________________
Shannon C. Scott, Clerk                                                                 Robert R. Adkins, Chairman

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