COMMISSIONERS SPECIAL MEETING
The special meeting of the Hancock County Commissioners was brought to order by Commissioner Clark at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday August 17, 2021. Commissioner Wombacher, Commissioner Paradis, County Administrator Scott Adkins and Deputy County Administrator Rebekah Knowlton were also present, as well as several Department Heads. The meeting was held using a hybrid format and Department Heads and members of the public were able to attend in person or via Zoom.
Adjustments to agenda:
MOTION: Move to approve the amended agenda as presented with the exception of removing item 4(a). (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Public Comment: none
MOTION: Move to approve the minutes of the August 3, 2021 Regular Meeting as presented. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: Move to hire Monica Cease of Ellsworth as Finance Director at an annual salary of $55,000 effective August 28, 2021. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
K Barbee Business Services / ARP Consultant:
MOTION: move to accept and file the report by Ms. Barbee as presented (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Barbee reported that two applicants had been approved for funding through the ARP/Revenue Loss Grant and there are currently four more applications in process.
MOTION: Move to acknowledge the award of an ARP/Revenue Loss Grant to H.O.M.E. of Bucksport, ME in the amount of $10,000 as awarded by the Grant Awards Committee. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: Move to acknowledge the award of an ARP/Revenue Loss Grant to Friends in Action of Ellsworth, ME in the amount of $10,000 as awarded by the Grant Awards Committee. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Hazard Pay Project / Review of details & authorize-
The Commissioners reviewed a spreadsheet regarding a one-time stipend representing hazard pay for Hancock County employees, covering the emergency period of the Coronavirus pandemic. CA Adkins explained the rationale and formula applied for distribution of the funds.
MOTION: Move to approve the Hazard Pay Period of March 2020 through June 2021 and to authorize payment from ARP funds as presented and recommended in the Hazard Pay Project Plan dated August 17, 2021 by the County Administrator (Paradis/Wombacher- after discussion motion and second were withdrawn)
MOTION: Move to approve the Hazard Pay Period of March 2020 through June 2021. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Ellsworth City Manager/Police Chief Glenn Moshier requested that hazard pay be spread throughout all first responders in the County. The Commissioners agreed to revisit the issue for hazard pay throughout the county. CA Adkins said this was one way the Commissioners could recognize the County’s workforce and their contribution; he also referenced the pay disparity that exists. CA Adkins will refine the list and amounts and bring the information back to the Commission at the next meeting for approval.
Sheriff’s Office Accessible Entrance RFQ recommendation-
The Commission agreed to choose an architect for the project today and work with him to develop an idea of the project’s cost.
MOTION: Move to approve the selection of Sealander Architects as the design team for the Sheriff’s Office Accessible Entrance project as recommended by the County Administrator and County Facilities Director in their memo dated August 10, 2021. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Commissioner Clark, CA Adkins, and Facilities Director Walls will meet with Architect Sealander to develop his role and expectations.
Broadband Consultant – discussion / decision-
There was some discussion on the challenges of bringing broadband throughout the County, given the broad scope of the project. Barbee and CA Adkins have met with several potential consultants but have not yet had a chance to discuss the meetings’ outcomes. They will bring back a recommendation for a broadband consultant at a future meeting.
MOTION: authorize Kitty to issue the letter dated August 17, 2021 to the towns regarding ARP funds (Clark/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: Move to approve the snow removal bid request for Fletcher’s Landing Road (Paradis/Wombacher – after discussion the motion and second were withdrawn)
Commissioner Clark suggested that it may be better to work with Waltham for snow removal. UT Supervisor Billings will talk with the town of Waltham to determine if there was interest in contracting with them to plow the Fletcher’s Landing Road.
MOTION: Move to table this item to the first meeting in September. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Supervisor Billings reported that he received a report and request from Acadia ATV that funds be released from the state for the ATV Club Trail Maintenance Grant. Billings traveled the roads and is recommending the Commissioners approve the request.
MOTION: Move to approve the Acadia Area ATV Trails Grant fund request as presented and recommend by the UT Director. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Supervisor Billings received an email from Airline Trail Riders indicating they are interested in the grant for their organization; this will be on the next agenda.
The Commissioners will review the job descriptions for Legal Secretary I, II, and III at a future meeting, once HR has reviewed them.
MOTION: Move go out to bid for a Utility Terrain Vehicle (UTV) by sealed bid as recommended. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: I nominate Brian Dunn of Otis to the Airport Advisory Committee for District 1, with a term expiring 12/31/2024. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: I nominate Nathanial Fenton of Lamoine to the Airport Advisory Committee for District 3, with a term expiring 12/31/2024. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Remote Meeting Policy-
The Commissioners reviewed and approved the draft Remote Meeting Policy and scheduled the public hearing for the second meeting in September.
MOTION: Move to approve the draft of the Remote Participation Policy as presented and to schedule a public hearing (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
MOTION: Move to schedule the public hearing for the Remote Participation Policy for the second meeting in September (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
The Commissioners reviewed the Deeds and IT Departmental budgets.
The initial budget figures are as follows:
Deeds (Dept. 9)
Information Technology (Dept. 14)-
The initial budget figures are as follows:
MOTION: Move to go into Executive Session as permitted by MRSA Title 1§405 6(E) to consult with legal counsel regarding the Commission’s rights and duties when hearing abatement requests and in particular what actions need to be taken by the Commission, if any, in light of the Court’s decision in the Knowlton appeal. (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Time in: 10:58 am
Time out: 12:19 am
Back in regular session, the Chair reported that the Commission would go back into deliberations on the Knowlton matter at the September 8, 2021 meeting.
MOTION: Move to adjourn (Paradis/Wombacher 3-0, motion passed)
Deputy County Administrator