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Minutes January 19, 2011


4:00 P.M.
The Board of County Commissioners of Madison County, Florida met this day in Regular Session with the following members present: Justin Hamrick (District 1), Wayne Vickers (District 2), Renetta Parrish (District 3), Alfred Martin (District 4), and Roy Ellis (District 5). Also present were County Attorney George T. Reeves, County Coordinator Allen Cherry, and County Clerk Tim Sanders.
            The Chair, Honorable Renetta Parrish, called the meeting to order and called the roll.
Upon a motion by Commissioner Martin, seconded by Commissioner Vickers, the Board voted unanimously (5-0) to approve the agenda as amended: At the request of the Chair, add to New Business item No. 6. Discussion regarding letter concerning proposed Community Covenant.
Under “Petitions From The Public” Mr. John Ovenden of The Madison Florida Voice asked the Board for direction on whether he is eligible to publish legal advertisements for Madison County. The County Attorney advised eligibility is determined by Chapter 55, Florida Statutes. Mr. Reeves also stated the Tax Collector presently contracts with the local newspaper, which is the sole weekly publisher in the county.
At 4:10 P.M. the Chair turned the Board’s attention to a Public Hearing regarding an application made by Nestle Waters to vacate Lots 44, 45, and 46, Block A, in RIVER HIGHLANDS, a subdivision in section 24, township 1 north, range 10 east. County Planner Jeanne Bass located the subject properties on the video screens for those in attendance owned by Nestle and noted the lots are contiguous with and situated on the north boundary of a 60.6 acre parcel also owned by Nestle. The County Planner also noted the request did not go before the Planning and Zoning Board.
            The floor was opened to the public for comment. Nestle Waters Natural Resource Manager Ken Koptiuch stated the purpose of the request to vacate said subdivision lots was to extend a level of protection over the property as part of their springs management program to protect the ground water system, as well as, to make one contiguous parcel as compared to four separate parcels. Commissioner Ellis expressed concerns that all the subdivision lots have been sold with the assumption by the owners of one dwelling per lot, and also the precedent of converting said subdivision lots to forestry use and lower property values. Attorney for Nestle Waters, Mr. Austin Peele, explained the partial vacation of the subdivision plat subject to Board action and noted the request does not affect access in the subdivision, nor are any owner’s rights affected in the subdivision. He stated the protection of the water resource is the interest of the company and requested approval by the Board. Mrs. Marianne Greene suggested placing the subject lots in Conservation classification. Mr. Jerry Anderson, a property owner in RIVER HIGHLANDS, stated he opposed the request and pointed out Nestle could do their tree management program within the subdivision framework. Mr. Koptiuch located on the map the present well location at the northeast corner of the 60.6 acre tract and its relationship to the subject three subdivision lots to the north and west. Mr. Peele noted a Conservation Easement must be approved by the State with conditions that are very onerous.
            There being no further comments, the Chair turned the Public Hearing back to the Board. A motion was made by Commissioner Ellis and seconded by Commissioner Vickers to deny the request to vacate said lots in a platted subdivision. Motion carried 5-0.
Also under “Petitions From The Public” Madison County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Ted Ensminger announced his resignation effective in two weeks. He stated he has been given the opportunity to serve as Director of Sales for Honey Lake Plantation. 
The minutes of the Regular Meeting held on January 5, 2011 were presented for review. Upon a motion by Commissioner Vickers, seconded by Commissioner Martin, the Board voted unanimously to approve said minutes as presented.
Upon a motion by Commissioner Martin, seconded by Commissioner Vickers, the Board unanimously approved the Consent Agenda (1. Budget Amendment Request for Emergency Medical Services/Communications Building Grant; 2. Contract Amendment #1 to the Fiscal Year 2010/2011 contract between the Madison County Health Department and Madison County Board of County Commissioners).
Road and Bridge Department Field Specialist Lonnie Thigpen reported the Road Department has been without a totally operable excavator for three years and sold this piece of equipment at the latest surplus sale. He stated the following two used excavators, reasonably priced and in good condition, have been located and worthy of consideration to purchase:
1.      2005 Caterpillar Model 320CL excavator with 3500 hours of usage from Ring Power Corporation at a cost of $89,500.00
2.      2005 John Deere Model 200CLC excavator with 4700 hours of usage from Flint Equipment Company at a cost of $58,000.00.
Mr. Cherry reported with the purchase of one of these machines the department’s end-loader could go back to the dealer with a $65,000 buy-back reimbursement to the County, which would offset the purchase of an excavator. Mr. Thigpen also reported that with needed reconditioning, the total price for the John Deere model is $59,100.00. Upon a motion by Commissioner Martin, seconded by Commissioner Vickers, the Board voted unanimously to approve the purchase of the recommended John Deere excavator.
Solid Waste/Recycling Coordinator Jerome Wyche presented an information paper on the paving of interior areas of the County’s Collection Sites. In it he explained a phased, cost-saving approach to paving the various sites throughout the County by paving contractors in the vicinity with work in progress. Mr. Wyche also presented a quote from Scruggs Company to pave the entire surface of the new Lovett Live Oak Bottom Collection Site in conjunction with the Flowers Road paving project in the amount of $32,936.40. He explained as other road-paving projects in the county occur, the collection site paving could be piggy-backed with the larger road-paving project. A motion was made by Commissioner Martin and seconded by Commissioner Vickers to approve the recommendation of the Solid Waste/Recycling Coordinator to pave the new Live Oak Bottom Collection Site at a cost of $32,936.40. Motion carried 5-0. Commissioner Ellis asked Mr. Wyche to prepare a cost analysis of paving all Collection Sites.
Mr. Cherry referred to the County’s proposed EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY (EEO) PLAN FOR THE PERIOD OCTOBER 1, 2010 – SEPTEMBER 30, 2012. He reported the policy must be approved every two years and that as in the past, Veterans Service Officer Oliver Bradley is designated as the EEO Coordinator. Upon a motion by Commissioner Ellis, seconded by Commissioner Martin, the Board voted unanimously to approve said EEO Plan.
Madison County Memorial Hospital (MCMH) Finance Officer Patrick Halfhill gave the Board an update on the construction of a new hospital. He reported the architectural firm of Clemons, Rutherford & Associates (CRA) is close to an overall design with plans to forward the architectural documents to USDA and ACHA in two to three months for approval. MCMH Board Chairman Ben Harris stated the timeframe for bidding for contractor selection will be based upon said approval by USDA and ACHA and hopefully in August.
Mr. Halfhill also described the overhaul of the hospital’s IT system, which is funded by the hospital’s USDA loan at a cost of $1,600,000. He stated the system is not limited to finance, but also patient care with electronic medical records, and will provide a better cash flow and financial basis for the hospital with an increased 20% reimbursement by Medicare.
At 5:10 P.M. the Chair directed the Board’s attention to adoption of an ordinance for a Large Scale Amendment to the Comprehensive Plan requested by the Suwannee River Water Management District (SRWMD). County Planner Jeanne Bass reported the SRWMD has made application to amend the Future Land Use Map of the Comprehensive Plan by changing the future land use classification by ordinance (AN ORDINANCE OF MADISON COUNTY, FLORIDA, AMENDING THE FUTURE LAND USE PLAN MAP OF THE MADISON COUNTY COMPREHENSIVE PLAN, AS AMENDED; RELATING TO AN AMENDMENT OF MORE THAN TEN ACRES OF LAND, PURSUANT TO AN APPLICATION BY THE SUWANNEE RIVER WATER MANAGEMENT DISTRICT (“SRWMD”), UNDER THE AMENDMENT PROCEDURES ESTABLISHED IN SECTIONS 163.3161 THROUGH 163.3215, FLORIDA STATUTES, AS AMENDED; PROVIDING FOR AMENDING THE FUTURE LAND USE PLAN MAP OF THE COMPREHENSIVE PLAN BY PROVIDING FOR CHANGING THE FUTURE LAND USE CLASSIFICATION FROM CONSERVATION TO AGRICULTURE-1 (1 DWELLING UNIT PER 40 ACRES) OF CERTAIN LANDS WITHIN THE UNINCORPORATED AREA OF MADISON COUNTY, FLORIDA; PROVIDING SEVERABILITY; REPEALING ALL ORDINANCES IN CONFLICT; AND PROVIDING AN EFFECTIVE DATE) from Conservation to Agriculture-1 (1 dwelling unit per 40 acres) for the following described property: the West half of section 13, township 2 north, range 10 east, containing 320 acres, more or less. She noted the potential impact to the County by granting this land use change is a potential increase from 0 to 8 dwellings on the 320 acre tract. Ms. Bass reported the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) received the transmittal from the First Public Hearing held on December 15, 2010 with no objections. She also noted the Regional Planning Council has no objections to the proposed land use change.
Mr. Terry Demott of the SRWMD stated the proposal is part of the District’s divestment of property that does not serve water resource purposes and an attempt to place properties back on the tax rolls. He also reported a prospective buyer of the property plans to produce vegetables and other agricultural products on the subject property. The Chair opened the public hearing for public comment. Hearing none, the public comment portion of the hearing was closed. A motion was made by Commissioner Martin and seconded by Commissioner Vickers to approve said Ordinance. Motion carried 5-0.
Discussion followed on the proposed Community Covenant in Madison and the County’s participation. The Chair referred to an email from Jacquelyn E. Smith, District Director for Congressman Ander Crenshaw, and read it for the record. In the correspondence Ms. Smith reports that the Covenant is an enduring program with expectations of commitment and support. North Florida Community College President John Grosskopf reported the college was originally supportive of the initiative, but currently without development of a plan for the program, the college can be supportive in spirit only. Veterans Service Officer Oliver Bradley reported the proposed Covenant is not associated with the Veterans Administration, but is actually run through the Department of Defense and the U. S. Army to support active duty personnel.
To clear up any misunderstanding, Ms. Rae Pike presented an email response from Maria Lloyd, Army Community Covenant, Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management (ACSIM), Soldier and Family Readiness Division, the Pentagon, to Ms. Jacquelyn Smith. In it Ms. Lloyd noted 650 communities have signed covenants across the country pledging community support without financial liability. Also in the email, Ms. Lloyd advised the establishment of a coalition is sufficient to execute a Community Covenant signing. Ms. Pike also reported the Governor’s Office is moving forward with the signing event scheduled for February 5th. And in response to the Chair, Ms. Pike stated after the covenant signing a plan will be formed to work on the community’s initiatives. Since there is a Regular Meeting of the Board on February 2nd before the proposed signing date, the Board by consensus agreed to re-agenda the matter. The County Attorney suggested the Pentagon directly provide the Board with information on the Community Covenant for said meeting in February.
The Clerk referred to information in the Commissioner’s Packet regarding a proposed INVITATION TO BID (FOR) REMOVAL SERVICES OF DECEASED INDIVIDUALS, which included applicable Florida Statutes and a letter to the Commissioners from Sheriff Ben Stewart. Commissioner Hamrick asked the Sheriff if he would accept the responsibility of the removal services with a transfer of budgeted funds from the Board’s General Fund to his Fine & Forfeiture Fund. The Sheriff stated he would be glad to perform the duties, either with Sheriff’s Office personnel or with a third party as currently contracted. The Clerk reported the budgeted amount for the current 2010-2011 fiscal year for said services is $5,500. A motion was made by Commissioner Ellis and seconded by Commissioner Hamrick to transfer the responsibilities and remainder of said removal services budget to the Sheriff from the General Fund. Motion carried 3-2 with Chairperson Parrish and Commissioner Martin opposed.
Upon a motion by Commissioner Ellis, seconded by Commissioner Vickers, the Board voted unanimously to declare February 13-19, 2011 as HAZARDOUS MATERIALS AWARENESS WEEK in Madison County and join the North Central Florida Local Emergency Planning Committee and numerous municipalities, counties and school boards, in publicly promoting community hazardous materials safety.
The Clerk stated the following two requests stem from considerations from the past budget process. First, Mr. Sanders reported the Board approved a budget line item of $2500 to continue to lease property from Robert and Robena Searcy for an airport. Mr. Sanders stated the original term of a three-year lease expired, but an option for an additional three-year lease is available in the LEASE AGREEMENT if agreeable to both parties. The Clerk asked the Board for its approval to send a letter to the Searcys to sign to continue the lease with the same terms and conditions. Upon a motion by Commissioner Ellis, seconded by Commissioner Vickers, the Board voted unanimously to amend the agenda to consider said request. A motion was then made by Commissioner Ellis and seconded by Commissioner Vickers to approve said request by the Clerk to forward the letter of agreement to the Searcys. Motion carried 5-0.
The Clerk also reminded the Board of the reduction in budgeted computer maintenance costs made by the Property Appraiser with the idea of purchasing a GIS Data Management System from the same 911 software provider for Emergency Medical Services (EMS). Mr. Sanders reported the total cost of the new system, which will tie in with EMS is $80,094.16, and that funds are available in E-911 reserves. The Clerk also reported it is understood that there will be a yearly savings of $7,358.50 in maintenance costs with the Property Appraiser’s new system and that the Property Appraiser’s office is without a maintenance contract with their present system at this time. Upon a motion by Commissioner Vickers, seconded by Commissioner Ellis, the Board voted unanimously to amend the agenda to consider said purchase. A motion was then made by Commissioner Vickers and seconded by Commissioner Ellis to approve the purchase of said Property Appraiser software and support from AK Associates at a cost of $80,094.16. Motion carried 5-0.
The Clerk also presented the December 2010 Statement of Actual and Estimated Revenues And Statement of Expenditures, Encumbrances and Appropriations as of November 30, 2010.
The Chair asked that a congratulatory letter be sent by the Board to EMS Director Juan Botino and his staff for an outstanding Compliance Monitoring site survey conducted by the Bureau of Emergency Medical Services. The Board by consensus approved said letter signed by the Chair.
There being no further business to come before the Board, the Chair adjourned the meeting at 6:30 P.M.
                                                                        Board of County Commissioners
                                                                        Madison County, Florida
By: ____________________________
                                                                               Renetta Parrish, Chair
Tim Sanders, Clerk to the Board of
County Commissioners

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