April 23, 1998

LANE COUNTY BUDGET COMMITTEE MEETING

Commissioners' Conference Room 5:15 p.m.

PRESENT: Marie Bell, Verna Brown, Steve Cornacchia, Dave Crowell, Ellie Dumdi, Bobby Green, Sr., Mary Ann Holser, Carol Jones, Peter Sorenson and Cindy Weeldreyer. Zoe Gilstrap, Recording Secretary.

I. CALL MEETING TO ORDER

Marie Bell called the meeting to order.

II. APPROVAL OF MINUTES

MOTION: Approval of May 22, 27 and 28, 1997 Minutes.

Weeldreyer MOVED, Brown SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

III. PUBLIC COMMENT

Kurt Willcox, 1174 Gateway Loop, Springfield, council representative for AFSCME Council 75, stated that he was here to speak about the Sheriff's budget. Willcox remarked that the Sheriff proposes no change in the budget for medical services at the jail. He said that he has met most of the nurses, noting their concern about the working conditions at the jail. Willcox indicated that the nurses believe the conditions they work under are intolerable because they constantly work extra hours, cannot get time off and have low wages. He noted their concern about liability for the County. Willcox said that he is recommending the addition of one nurse position. Regarding liability concerns, he stated that he believes a 24-hour operation would be helpful.

Sarah Sheffield, 101 W 5th, Eugene, Nurse Practitioner, stated that there are very highly skilled, committed people working at the jail. She said these people need to be able to make quick decisions which is difficult to do when staffing is short. Sheffield stressed that the nurses are overworked and under considerable stress. She noted that they cannot fill an empty position due to the wage that they offer, stating that the demands of the job are huge and the wages are insulting. She encouraged the Budget Committee to follow them through their workday. Sheffield emphasized that the nurses are already experiencing burnout and said there is going to be even more work soon due to the expansion of the jail.

Judith Lerner, 2510 Kincaid, Eugene, stated that she was here to discuss supportive employment for people with developmental disabilities. She explained that while people with developmental disabilities have mild to moderate disabilities, they have many skills, are hard working and conscientious and make enormous efforts to achieve the things most people take for granted. Lerner stated that people with developmental disabilities comprise 3% of the population, although they are not 3% of the county workforce. She said they are not asking that additional positions be created but that existing job descriptions be modified so that people with developmental disabilities can fit the job descriptions and be hired at entry level jobs. Lerner remarked that local agencies such as Vocational Rehabilitation can provide job training and job coaches. She asked that Lane County allocate personnel time and resources to make this a reality. Lerner asked that if there were any questions or concerns to call her at 343-6093.

Barbie Byford, 30365 Coburg Bottom Loop, Eugene, stated that she goes to Sheldon High School and works every day at the District Attorney's office. She said she helps out by filing, keeping the copy room clean and making sure there are supplies. Byford said she is a hard worker and takes her job seriously. She stated that she wants a paying job after she graduates from high school this year.

Nancy Byford, 30365 Coburg Bottom Loop, Eugene, stated that she is Barbie's mother and said she is very proud of the job her daughter is doing at the District Attorney's office. She commented that the office staff is doing an excellent job to help instill a sense of self worth in Barbie and would like to see this turn into a paying job. Byford stated that Barbie would rather be self supporting than to have people pay for her the rest of her life.

Bill Van Vactor, County Administrator, stated that this issue is on the future agenda for the Leadership Team.

IV. BUDGET REVIEW: SUPPORT SERVICES

Board of Commissioners and County Administration

Van Vactor noted that in order to save resources, this will be the last night Metro Television will cover the Budget Committee meetings.

Tanya Heaton, Management Analyst, provided the review of these budgets (see material on file). She noted that there are two proposed add packages, stating that they are not recommending any adds this year. Van Vactor explained that the 2.5 FTE clerical assistance proposal can be reconfigured by the Budget Committee or the Board. He added that the $50,000 figure for a facilitator for development of a strategic plan was an estimate.

Bell recommended tentative approval of the proposed budgets without the additions.

Dumdi proposed reducing the clerical assistance to 1.0 FTE to be available among all the commissioners rather than .5 FTE for each. Green stated that he would not advocate for assistants. He said he would advocate for a placeholder for a facilitator for the strategic plan, but the amount seemed high. Brown advocated for the strategic plan, stating that it is a form of prevention and should be in the final package. Regarding commissioner assistants, Weeldreyer remarked that the cost for a clerical assistant to make copies is much more efficient than having commissioners make them, but she did not necessarily advocate for five positions. She echoed Brown's support of the strategic plan. Cornacchia stated that he has no need for clerical assistants; however, he noted that the rural commissioners differ due to geographical issues. He indicated that urban commissioners do not need assistants, stating that he felt it was more important to meet the organization's needs first. Sorenson stated that the strategic plan is important, noting that it was the Future Focus Task Force's highest priority and they should make a commitment to do this. Regarding assistants, he said they need to look at how the organization as a whole meets their clerical needs. Sorenson stated that if some don't have assistants, no one should throughout the organization. He said having clerical assistants will improve productivity. Holser advocated for the 1.0 FTE clerical position. She said it creates a public relations problem when people can't reach their commissioners. Holser stated that Lane County is too big to run on volunteers.
There was agreement to Bell's suggestion that the add proposal for clerical assistants proceed as 1.0 FTE rather than 2.5 FTE to be discussed with all add proposals at the end of the department presentations.

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Board of Commissioners and County Administration proposed budgets.

Brown MOVED, Cornacchia SECONDED. VOTE: 9-0 (Crowell was out of the room).

County Counsel, All Funds

Rick Schulz, Management Analyst, reviewed the budget (see material on file). He stated that there is an add request for an additional lawyer although it is not recommended. Teresa Wilson, County Counsel, stated that the general fund portion of the proposed add of $80,000 is approximately $26,741.

Schulz also discussed the book theft detection system addition in the law library fund (see material on file). Randy Mafit, Law Librarian, briefly reviewed this detection system and their experience with loss of books.

MOTION: Tentative approval of the County Counsel proposed budget for all funds.

Cornacchia MOVED, Green SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Regarding the request for an addition lawyer, Wilson noted there was a 20% increase in claims this year. She explained that there are three arenas of litigation that are becoming more complex and time consuming: environmental and chemical sensitivity cases; personnel matters; and managed medical and mental health care. Wilson said they are focused on crisis management litigation, not preventive law, noting that the crisis management litigation is causing her concern. She also noted that there will be employees retiring soon and referred to the impacts of the lack of institution for the future. Cornacchia recognized the importance of this add package for preventive measures and said not doing this will cost Lane County money in the long run. Weeldreyer echoed Cornacchia's comments and said this addition would be very high on her list.

Information Services

Schulz distributed additional material regarding the add proposal for this department and reviewed this budget (see material on file). He stated that the IS department has had a lot of first time costs and they are now being charged indirect. Schulz said staff recommends approval of the proposed budget without the adds.

Gary Ingram, Department Director, Information Services, explained the GIS system and how it would be utilized by the County. A list of benefits of a GIS system was distributed (see material on file). Responding to Sorenson, Ingram stated that the budget includes replacing the financial system and staffing; however, an emergency plan and elevator system are not included in this budget. Schulz explained the PC replacement fund, noting that it has not been approved by the Board but was recommended by ISIG, the Management Team, Finance and Audit and the Technical Management Team. Dumdi stated that she is supportive of the replacement fund. Responding to Brown, Schulz said that RIS, JTPA and the Fair Board have chosen not to participate in the replacement fund. Green stated that he supports the PC replacement fund but is also concerned about other capital needs.

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Information Services proposed budget.

Green MOVED, Brown SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Regional Information Services

Schulz gave a brief overview of this department (see material on file). Responding to Sorenson, Schulz said the Regional Executive Group (REG) oversees the budget, noting that Van Vactor and Tax Assessor Jim Gangle are members of REG.

Responding to Sorenson, Paul White, Acting Director, RIS, stated that even though the mainframe may eventually go away, other operating requirements won't and they will still have RIS, even if they get rid of the mainframe. Van Vactor noted that AIRS is still a critical service, stating that there is a need to determine if they should keep that mainframe or get a replacement. He said it may be more cost effective to get a new smaller mainframe.

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Regional Information Services budget.

Cornacchia MOVED, Green SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0

General Expense

David Garnick, Senior Management Analyst, reviewed his memo (see material on file), noting that the Extension Services and Corrections Operation levy have been rolled into the general fund due to Measure 50.

Janet Calvert, Extension Services, stated that they have a healthy reserve which has been built up since 1987 due to prudence on their part. She noted that they had over 660 volunteers last year. Calvert stated that this is the operational budget only, noting that salaries are paid by Oregon State University.

Cornacchia stated that staff is requesting a fee increase for Lane Regional Air Pollution Authority (LRAPA). He noted that the fines from LRAPA go to the County and that part of these fines are now going to help pay for their collection.

Garnick noted that there is an add package from the Veterans Service Office for an additional $30,000 from the general fund.

Mike Robinson, Service Representative, Veterans Service Office, said he is willing not to advocate for additional funding after listening to Tuesday's night budget address. He stated that he does not want their add request to take money away from other services. Robinson remarked that they were asking for this due to the influx of Persian Gulf veterans and aging W.W.II veterans.

Cornacchia urged Robinson not to withdraw this add package.

MOTION: Tentative approval of the General Fund 24 proposed budget.
Green MOVED, Cornacchia SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Garnick gave an overview of the following funds:

Self Insurance Fund 12

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Self Insurance Fund 12.
Green MOVED, Cornacchia SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Employee Benefit Fund 14

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Employee Benefit Fund 14.
Green MOVED, Dumdi SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Special Revenue/Service Fund 28

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Special Revenue/Service Fund 28.
Green MOVED, Dumdi SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Juvenile Justice Center Construction Fund 54

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Juvenile Justice Center Construction Fund 54.
Green MOVED, Dumdi SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Corrections Operations Fund 18
MOTION: Tentative approval of the Corrections Operations Fund 18.
Cornacchia MOVED, Dumdi SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Extension Services Fund 42

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Extension Services Fund 42.
Cornacchia MOVED, Dumdi SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Capital Improvement Fund 35

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Capital Improvement Fund 35.
Dumdi MOVED, Green SECONDED. Green noted that there is a small remaining balance carried forward from the Child Advocacy Center. Garnick will check on the original source of the Child Advocacy Center project as requested by Green. VOTE: 10-0.

Corrections Construction Fund 15

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Corrections Construction Fund 15.
Brown MOVED, Weeldreyer SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Debt Service Funds 10, 23, 33, 36

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Debt Service Funds 10, 23, 33, 36.
Weeldreyer MOVED, Dumdi SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0. In response to Brown's request, Garnick will report back on the Weyerhaeuser Pollution Control Bond.

County School Fund 41

MOTION: Tentative approval of the County School Fund 41.
Cornacchia MOVED, Dumdi SECONDED. VOTE: 10-0.

Weeldreyer left at 8:30 p.m.

Management Services

Garnick presented this department's budget (see material on file). He noted that the biggest changes in this department are the shifting of all other central support into the general fund and the addition of positions added to address centralization of personnel functions.

MOTION: Tentative approval of the Management Services proposed budget, all funds.

Green MOVED, Brown SECONDED. VOTE: 9-0.

V. HAND OUT MATERIAL FOR NEXT MEETING.

Garnick distributed packet material for next Thursday.

VI. ADJOURN

There being no further business, this meeting adjourned at 8:41 p.m.

Zoe Gilstrap, Recording Secretary

go_to.gif (1155 bytes)Back to Board Notices