Board of Supervisors - June 14, 2018 Regular Meeting

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The Wise County Board of Supervisors met in a Regular Meeting on Thursday, June 14, 2018 @ 6:00 p.m. in the School Board Education Center located on Lake Street in Wise.  The following members were present:

Honorable Dana G. Kilgore – Chair
Honorable Robert E. Robbins, Jr. – Vice-Chair
Honorable J. H. Rivers
Honorable John Schoolcraft
Honorable Fred Luntsford
Honorable Bobby Cassell
Honorable Steve Bates
Honorable Robert R. Adkins – members of said Board and
David L. Cox – Interim County Administrator
Karen T. Mullins – County Attorney
Annette Underwood – Executive Secretary

PRAYER

Bob Adkins led in prayer.

PLEDGE

All led in the pledge of allegiance to the flag.

MINUTES

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

AGENDA

A motion was made by J. H. Rivers, seconded by John Schoolcraft, to approve the agenda as presented to include items in red.  The motion was unanimously approved.

ROADS AND HIGHWAYS

Supervisor Cassell  stated that in District 1, in the area that work is being done on the West Norton Bridge,  the recent rains have made ruts in the road, the road is breaking off, and the pavement is cracking.   Also, the ditch lines have been filled with debris and need to be cleaned out.

Supervisor Bates stated that he has been getting calls from citizens living on Birchfield Road above his home, that  the main road is breaking off and the pavement is cracking.  This problem has gotten worse due to all the rain in recent weeks.

Jackie Christian, VDOT Assistant Residency Administrator, said a VDOT crew is working daily on these problems that have been caused by the heavy rains.

IN RE:  PUBLIC HEARING – SECONDARY SIX-YEAR PLAN

A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizens’ comments regarding a joint public hearing between VDOT and the Wise County Board of Supervisors on the proposed Secondary Six Year Plan for FY 2019/20 through 2023/24 in Wise County and on the Secondary System Construction Budget for FY 2019/20.

Jackie Christian, VDOT Assistant Residency Administrator, reviewed by line item, the secondary system construction program.

There being no public comments regarding the proposed Plan, the public hearing was closed.

IN RE:  PUBLIC HEARING – WISE COUNTY FY 2018/19 BUDGET

A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizens’ comments regarding the proposed County FY 2018/19 Budget.

Cathy Music and Paul Clark thanked the Board for level funding the school system’s budget, and taking care of Wise County Teachers.

Matt Slemp, representing the Sandy Ridge Rescue Squad, reminded the Board that he has repeatedly come before the Board since 2013 requesting additional  financial  assistance for the Sandy Ridge Rescue Squad.  He explained that a nearby squad has fewer calls than his squad but they get additional funding from the County.  His squad is “flat broke” and he and his father have been using their personal funds to keep the doors open.  There are no volunteers anymore, and at this point, he has no incentives to offer for recruiting new members.   At this time, he is taking steps, if the County cannot offer more assistance, to close the doors.

Board Chair Kilgore stated that the County is not able to respond to this need at this time.

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

IN RE:  CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL FORENSICS TEAM

Several members of the Central High School Forensics Team were present for the reading of the resolution from the Board of Supervisors honoring the Forensics Team for winning the  2018 State Group 2A Championship

PUBLIC  EXPRESSION

Master Naturalists Chris Allgyer & Paxton Allgyer, came before the Board with an overview of the Maple Project and the process for making maple syrup.  2018 was the third year of the Maple Project conducted by the High Knob Master Naturalists.  This was a demo project at the Powell River Project and has ranged from 35 to 45 taps.  Both sugar maple and red maple trees are tapped there.  Buckets were used in 2016 and switched to tubing 2017.  Mr. Meeks and five High Knob Master Naturalists, and the lease holder of the forested property were involved this year.

Phil Meeks, Extension Agent for Wise County, noted that there has been at least a couple of how-to-workshops on maple production through the Extension Office each year before tapping season begins.  It is believed that this can be a good cottage industry for Wise County, even for those who don’t own land.  The U.S. Forest Service does do maple leases in other areas.

IN RE:  CONSENT AGENDA

A motion was made by Bob Adkins, seconded by Bobby Cassell, to approve the consent agenda as follows:

IN RE:  RESOLUTION – SECONDARY SIX-YEAR PLAN & SECONDARY SYSTEM CONSTRUCTION BUDGET

Adopted the resolution approving the Secondary Six-Year Plan and Secondary System Construction Plan

RESOLUTION #                  2018

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

IN RE:  RESOLUTION PPTRA BUDGET

Approved the PPTRA budget as presented

RESOLUTION #         2018

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

IN RE:  ARC CONTRACT

Approved the renewal of ARC’s Contract for one year

The motion to approve the consent agenda was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  POLICY FOR DEMOLITION OF UNSAFE BUILDINGS OR STRUCTURES

Attorney Mullins noted that she has provided the Board with a proposed policy  outlining procedures that addresses properties that have been condemned and are considered blighted and a danger to the public.  She explained that blighted properties are a part of the Comp Plan that is in the final stages of being approved by the Board.  There is a section in the Comp Plan that calls for a Committee to  provide a formula for reducing blighted areas.  Several individuals that have condemned property have been notified and have cleaned up their property.  The process for removal of condemned properties can become very complicated, and costly.

After discussing the need for a committee as noted in the proposed Comp Plan, it was agreed that the full Board should serve as the committee.

Chair Kilgore suggested setting a date for a Workshop meeting to address the process for removal of these blighted properties after close session.

Supervisor Rivers felt that getting the property owners involved and hold them accountable for removal or upkeep of their property would help the County in its efforts to remove blighted property.

IN RE:  SURPLUS SCHOOL FUNDS

Supervisor Rivers felt that the County should allow the school funds to be carried over, which would allow work on the schools capital improvement projects to move forward.    Supervisor Schoolcraft agreed that the schools should be level funded this year.

Supervisor Rivers stated if there are surplus monies left over at the end of this year; the Board should allow those funds to be carried over.  According to the list of capital improvement projects for the schools that have been provided to the Board, the school system needs these funds to address those needs.  It is vital that the buildings are kept in good condition for economic development , and better facilities for the students.
 
Supervisor Bates was in favor of allowing the money to be carried over this one time, which would allow the schools to get things that are needed for the schools and/or buy more buses while the funds are available.  The funds may not be there next year.  Having good schools is very important for economic growth.

Beth Shupe, Wise County Public School Director of Business and Finance, explained  that with the extra money that came in today and  after payroll  and accounts payable there will be about $300,000 or $400,000 left and possibly $500,000.  That is for this current month.  With the $1.5M federal revenue that came in, the local appropriation has not been drawn down as quickly as in the past, which allows the County to draw interest on those funds.   She explained the different funding sources received by the school system, and the restrictions that are on some of the funds.

Chairwoman Kilgore stated that the Board will need to have a public hearing on this increase in funding that was not included in the School FY 2017/18 budget because that amount is 1% over the County’s FY 2017/18 adopted budget.

IN RE:  COUNTY FY 2017/18 BUDGET  INCREASE (1%)

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Bobby  Cassell, to set a public hearing for June 28, 2018 @ 5:00 in the School Board Education Center to receive citizens’ comments on a change to Wise County’s FY 2017/18 budget in the amount of $2.64M, which is an amount greater than 1% of the adopted Wise County FY 2017/18 budget.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  ORDINANCE------ TECHNOLOGY ZONE INCENTIVE ORDINANCE

A motion was made by John Schoolcraft, seconded by Robby Robbins, to set a public hearing for Thursday, June 28, 2018 @ 5:00 PM in the School Board Education Center to receive citizens’ comments regarding a proposed Technology Zone Incentive Ordinance.   The motion was unanimously approved.

  IN RE:  EMERGENCY SERVICES FUNDING

Supervisor Luntsford voiced his concern that nothing has been put in the budget for emergency services.  This need has been discussed several times but nothing has been done.  He suggested setting aside funds to be earmarked for emergencies.   After talking with the Commissioner of Revenue regarding the proposed collection of severance tax money for 2018/19, there may be a surplus after meeting all budgeted requirements for those funds.  He suggested that any severance tax funds beyond that which has been budgeted, be earmarked with 25%  for condemned/demolition buildings , and 75% to emergency services.

Chairwoman Kilgore noted that she wanted the tax increase to go for public safety and school debt for Resource Officers.  The County pays for Resource Officers not the school system.  For the emergencies fund, it would need to be broken down and distributed accordingly.

Supervisor Luntsford said that Fire & Rescue have been level funded for years, and their costs keep going up.  He said he didn’t want the 75% emergency fund to be watered down to the point that Fire & Rescue would not see any additional funding.   This will be a one-time stipend for Fire and Rescue in the FY 18/19 budget.  Hopefully, the FY 19/20 budget will include more funding for Fire & Rescue.

Finance Administrator Cox noted that in the financials, the Board can make a motion to assign funds to emergency services or demolition of buildings.

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Bobby Cassell , that any surplus severance tax funds coming from the general fund that is beyond the year’s budgeted projection, be assigned with 75% for emergency services and 25% for a condemned/demolition building fund in the FY 2018/19.  The motion was unanimously approved.

Greg Mullins, Superintendent of Public Schools, informed the Board that he has spoken to Delegate Kilgore who sits on the committee that was put together at the state level to look into school safety concerns.  The primary information coming in from across the state that the committee is hearing is for the schools to fund a Resource Officer in every school, which would have the most impact on school safety.  This is information that will be forthcoming.

He also noted that the school system is doing some things to the school infrastructure to make the schools safer.

IN RE:  APPALACHIA FIRE DEPARTMENT HOMELAND SECURITY GRANT

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by John Schoolcraft, to authorize the County to be fiscal agent for the Homeland Security Grant for Appalachia Fire Department.  The motion was unanimously approved. 

IN RE:  SMART SCALE FUNDING APPLICATION

A motion was made by J. H. Rivers, seconded by Steve Bates, to ratify adding Tacoma Mountain Road improvements to the Smart Scale application for possible funding.

Aye-      J. H. Rivers                                          Abstain:               Robby Robbins
                John Schoolcraft
                Fred Luntsford
                Bobby Cassell
                Steve Bates
                Bob Adkins
                Dana Kilgore

IN RE:  APPOINTMENT – SOCIAL SERVICES BOARD

A motion was made by Steve Bates, seconded by Bob Adkins, to appoint Darlene Moore to fill the unexpired term of Gail Bryant on the Social Services Board for a term to end July 31, 2018.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  APPOINTMENT – BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS

A motion was made by J. H. Rivers, seconded by John Schoolcraft, to recommend Deborah  S. Kilgore for re-appointment to the Board of Zoning Appeals for a term of five (5) years.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  APPOINTMENT – LONESOME PINE YOUTH SERVICES BOARD

Robby Robbins nominated  Kara Mullins and Evan Blanton to the Lonesome Pine Youth Services Board for a term to expire upon graduation.  J. H. Rivers made a motion that nominations cease.  Fred Luntsford seconded the motion.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  APPOINTMENT – MECC  ADVISORY BOARD

A motion was made by Robby Robbins, seconded by Dana Kilgore, to re-appoint Bonnie Elosser to the MECC Advisory Board for a term of four (4) years.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  APPOINTMENT – RECREATIONAL AUTHORITY

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Bobby Cassell, to table the appointment to the Recreational Authority until the August meeting.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  CLOSE SESSION

A motion was made by Robby Robbins, seconded by John Schoolcraft, 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.

Following close session, a motion was made by Robby Robbins, seconded by Bob Adkins, to reconvene the regular meeting.  The motion was unanimously approved.

IN RE:  RESOLUTION CERTIFICATION FOR CLOSE MEETING

A motion was made by Robby Robbins, seconded by John Schoolcraft, to approve the resolution certifying that only public business matters lawfully exempted from open meeting requirements as were identified in the motion convening the close meeting were heard or discussed by the Board of Supervisors.  The motion was unanimously approved by roll call vote.

RESOLUTION #           2018

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

IN RE:  POSITION – FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT ASSISTANT

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by John Schoolcraft, to authorize filling the vacant position of Financial Management Assistant  in the County Administrator’s Office.  The motion was unanimously approved.

BOARD COMMENTS

Board members invited citizens to attend the different events taking place in each of the districts.

IN RE:  RECESS

A motion was made by Robby Robbins, seconded by Steve Bates, to recess the meeting until Thursday, June 28, 2018 @ 5:00 p.m. at the School Board Education Center.  The motion was unanimously approved.

ATTEST:                                                                     WISE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

 

_________________________________                        ___________________________________
David L. Cox, Interim Clerk                                                           Dana G. Kilgore, Chairwoman

 

 

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