BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'

WORK SESSION

9:00 a.m.

December 11, 2007

Commissioners' Conference Room

APPROVED 12/1/2009

 

Commissioner Faye Stewart presided with Commissioners Bill Dwyer, Bill Fleenor, Bobby Green, Sr., and Peter Sorenson present.  County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, County Counsel Teresa Wilson and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.

 

1. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA

 

None.

 

2. PUBLIC COMMENTS

 

None.

 

3. COMMISSIONERS' REMONSTRANCE

 

Dwyer heard a professor say there is going to be a turn down in the economy.

 

4. EXECUTIVE SESSION as per ORS 192.660

 

None.

 

5. COUNTY ADMINISTRATION

 

a. Announcements

 

Van Vactor was in contact with the cities of Eugene and Springfield and both indicated a willingness to have staff evaluate the idea of when cities process an annexation, they also process at the same for the Metropolitan Wastewater Service and Willamalane.  He added that they inquired about the feasibility about scheduling a meeting for the three governments to discuss metropolitan planning for February.  With regard to the scheduling of Delta Sand and Gravel, he indicated that the city of Eugene is working on it.

 

b. REPORT/Update on Secure Rural Schools.

 

Van Vactor reported there was a lot of activity last week.  He said the house passed an energy bill but it didnít move forward in the Senate.  He said in discussions with their lobbyists in Washington, D.C, they remain optimistic that something will happen next week.  He stated there will be an effort on the part of the Senate to scale back the energy bill to where it could become acceptable to the Senate and House and the President in getting the bill signed.  He added that they have changed the formula.

 

c. WORK SESSION/Service Priority Guidelines and Budget Guidelines.

 

Van Vactor reported on the current policy with service priority guidelines.  (Copy in file).  He said the difference between the two is the alternative elevates the County goals the Board would be adopting in January.  He said with regard to the health and safety response, those guidelines would have to be for life and death.  He thought it would narrow the programs that would qualify.   He believed it would have the net effect of creating a greater range of money available in each of the categories one through seven.  He said with the existing criteria last year, they didnít get far down the list.  He noted with the goal setting process the Board would go through in January with a new administrator and after input from the advisory committees and the Management Team, it would be the right circumstance to develop County goals for the 08/09 Budget.  He thought the broader community goals could be a two year process and he thought in a two year process things might clear from the federal government on Lane Countyís funding level.

 

Jennifer Inman, Senior Budget Analyst, asked the Board if they were interested in alternative service guidelines instead of the current one.  She distributed the guidelines they discussed last week. (Copy in file).

 

Dwyer wanted to utilize colors to give them a greater understanding of what they are doing.  He also wanted the leveraging listed, who would assume the responsibility and what would go away.

 

Sorenson said by looking at the new guidelines, he favors the alternative.  He commented that leveraging was another way of describing revenue generation.  He viewed raising fees and getting grants as revenue generating.

 

Green favored going into a goal setting session with the Board.  He thought they could then have a more robust conversation about what the goals should be for the organization. 

 

Van Vactor thought after the departments prepare their packages, he envisioned the Board participating in the process so they can determine if it is an immediate life health issue.  With regard to Secure Rural Schools, he said no matter what scenario they choose, they will be doing significant reductions in the process.

 

Fleenor asked if they should examine whether they should be a full service county and if they could provide all things to all people.  He thought they should be discussing the structural deficit.

 

Inman said what needs to come first is the discussion of the goals from the mission point of view.  She brought this to the Board today because they have to start putting together the proposed budgets in a couple of weeks and in order to do that, they have to be able to give the departments tools to be able to answer these questions so the Board can evaluate them.  She said Budget staff needs to be able to give direction to departments to provide the information so the Board can make the decisions.  She thought the Board could come back in February or March, prior to receiving the proposed budgets, do the goal setting and use that in the deliberation of the budget packet.

 

Fleenor wanted to visit what is driving the structural deficit and look at those programs and activities to work on eliminating the structural deficit.  He supported the alternative service priority guidelines and the leveraging.  He also liked a graphic display that would show subjective criteria for social leverage.  He hoped they could have a think tank work session for them to look at the big picture.  He stated that they have a one year reprieve.

 

Stewart commented that every service they provide in Lane County is important and is needed by the citizens.  He agreed they need to have a goal setting session with service priority conversations.  He thought they needed time to step back, recharge and think about things.  He thought in February or March the Board will have to commit to a series of workshops to accomplish that.  He suggested staff putting together a zero dollar budget.  He commented that nothing is guaranteed.  He said they have to do the revenue generating pieces in the government.  He wanted to make sure they have outcomes that are acceptable to the Board and they are doing something with the money.  He commented the service priorities they are going by are not working in this situation and they need to sit down as a Board and look at the goals and restructure them.  He noted that a majority of the Board wants to have a goal setting to set priorities in the future.

 

Sorenson recommended that between now and next Monday, a board order is prepared giving direction to the County Administrator to prepare the budget.

 

Garnick reiterated the Board wanted to go ahead with goal setting for the budget year coming up.  He said they would have the Board in the process once the departments prepare their services and they will have a chance to learn about the unintended consequences or the impacts on citizens.  He added the Budget Committee will also be present to help with the deliberation process.

 

Green indicated that they need to memorialize this for the new County Administrator.

 

Wilson explained that she will work on language with Inman to document the balancing of the services and how the Board wants the future to look.  She indicated those elements captured in a board order allow them to go into court to show it was a discretionary decision by the Board and it shouldnít result in a liability.

 

 

6. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

None.

 

7. CORRESPONDENCE TO THE BOARD

 

None.

 

8. COMMISSIONERS' BUSINESS

 

None.

 

9. EMERGENCY BUSINESS

 

None.

 

There being no further business, Commissioner Stewart recessed the meeting at 10:35 a.m.

 

 

Melissa Zimmer

Recording Secretary