CC Notes – October 17th 2016
All Commissioners were in attendance for the regularly scheduled monthly business meeting of the County Commission on October 17th except for Commissioner Hyder. She is still rehabilitating from severe back issues and should be with us next month. The meeting began with public comments. Craig Clark and Sandra Dutcher both spoke against the windfarm planned for the Crab Orchard area.
The first resolution of the evening concerned the management and compensation of the Emergency Medical Services Director and the Fire Department Chief. The current Chief/Director of the departments, Jeff Dodson, is retiring effective December 31, 2016. The setup has proved inefficient, and the Budget Committee recommended that the management of the two departments be separated back into two positions as it was prior to 2010. The Fire Chief would be placed at Grade 12 and the EMS Director would be placed at Grade 13 on the pay scale, as per the recommendation from the third party company that did the county’s recent compensation study. The motion passed 17 – 0.
A position in the Soil Conservation department was accidently paid on a 35 hour work week. The position was verified by the Finance Department to be a 40 hour per week job and a resolution was unanimously approved to correct this error. Permission was also granted for the Election Commission to receive grant funds of $5,800 to upgrade existing voting machines. This is a 100 percent state/federally funded grant that required no local matching funds.
$10,000 was approved to help purchase radios for Lake Tansi Security Enforcement. The county had previously approved assisting the Fairfield Glade community with radios. The money will go through the Sheriff’s Department to get better pricing on the equipment. The vote was unanimous.
An amendment to the Cumberland County Commission Rules was next on the agenda. The Rules Committee recommended the placement of an appointment of a vacant seat be placed after the public comments on the full County Commission agenda. This rule was recommended to ensure full representation for all districts when the commission appoints a new member. The resolutions passed 17 – 0.
The final resolution of the evening concerned selling the Youth Center as surplus property. The Commission declared the buildings and property formerly used as the Youth Center on Hayes Street as surplus property as it was no longer being used according to legal agreements. The property will now be sold using the County Mayor and Attorney as authorized agents. The resolution passed unanimously.
The Board of Education sales tax receipts are at $1,582,220 for the year against an $8,831,338 annual budget. September receipts were down $3,925 from projections at $749,552. Property taxes for the new fiscal year are yet to come in. The Hotel/Motel tax is solid at $192,861 collected against an $810,000 annual budget, which is 23.8%. Ambulance collections continue to be a concern as only $584,007, or 16%, of the annual $3,650,000 budget has been collected. August receipts were $281,187 and the next month looks to be even lower. In the past when this has happened, it was due to billing falling behind. I intend to find out more about this situation at the next Budget Committee meeting. Prisoner boarding is at $46,694 with only one month collected (the state seems to almost randomly pay this bill) against a $300,000 budget. That is 15.56% collected so far.
Thank you for allowing me to serve the 4th District and Cumberland County. If you have any questions or comments, please contact me at any time.
Board of Commissioners
4th District Representative