October 1, 1996
BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS' WORK SESSION
Commissioners' Conference Room - 9:00 a.m.

Chair Bobby Green, Sr. presided with Ellie Dumdi, Jerry Rust and Cindy Weeldreyer present. Steve Cornacchia excused. Sharon Giles, Recording Secretary.

1. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA

One item of Emergency Business was identified.

2. PUBLIC COMMENTS

Emory Rodgers, 4720 Center, remarked that he is the person who is protesting in front of the Courthouse and asked about parameters for setting up an information booth. Dumdi indicated that the free speech platform would be appropriate. Rust reported that he had told Rodgers yesterday that he was opposed to putting up a semi-permanent structure to house his information, but was supportive of Rodgers displaying signs, passing out literature, using sandwich boards, etc. Rust stated that he was speaking as one commissioner and was not in favor of allowing Rodgers to erect a semi-permanent structure outside of his tent. Bill Van Vactor, County Administrator, noted that he had asked Rodgers to move off of the lawn as the tent was damaging the grass. Van Vactor pointed out that Rodgers’ location now provides less interference with foot traffic than if he were in front of the free speech wall. Weeldreyer remarked that Rodgers was "pushing the envelope" and that her preference would be the use of an easel. Rodgers asked about setting up two sandwich boards, one sign and a table, which could be disassembled quickly. Rust indicated that he would prefer to see the sandwich board come down at night. Green asked if Rodgers was willing to assume liability for injury to the public. Green noted that Rogers was entitled to exercise free speech rights as long as it was not detrimental to others, but if the County receives complaints, it may need to take other measures.

3. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS

To be held at approximately 10:40 a.m.

4. EXECUTIVE SESSION as per ORS 192.660

To be held later today.

5. COUNTY ADMINISTRATION

a. Announcements

Van Vactor introduced Kent Howe who informed the Board that the planning program would be involved in a staff work session tomorrow, thus there would be no planning staff in Land Management tomorrow. He indicated that staff will work diligently Thursday and Friday to make up for any inconvenience.

Van Vactor referred to a letter from Fred Manela regarding the need for a county coordinator with regard to a planned sister-county delegation visit next fall during the Eugene Celebration. He noted that it takes a lot of logistical work to host a delegation., including home stays, tours, etc. Rust remarked that it would be regrettable not to respond in some way and he urged that the County find a way to make it happen. He indicated that he would volunteer to help out for a few months and suggested other resources, such as the German Club on campus. Green offered support for utilizing external resources. Rust urged Commissioners to put on a formal event to welcome them. Weeldreyer remarked on the importance of keeping commitments. She indicated that she was willing to act as host in her district for a day and agreed on the need to respond back favorably. Green summarized that the Board has interest in coordinating a county event, as well as seeking external resources. Rust, Weeldreyer and Dumdi offered to help out to some extent.

6. HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

a. DISCUSSION/Women, Infant and Children Program (WIC).

Karen Gillette, Public Health Manager, introduced Connie Sullivan, director of the local WIC program for several years, and Janice Yaden, interim director, until further direction is determined. Gillette reviewed her agenda memorandum (see material on file), summarizing that they were originally looking at a program utilizing 19 FTE and that staff has come to the decision that the program could be run at 16 FTE. She indicated that staff is asking Commissioners to help process whether to embrace bringing the program in-house. Weeldreyer referred to the File Note, asking what plans are for an unforeseen state reduction. Rob Rockstroh, Health and Human Services Director, responded that his department typically reduces or deletes a program as the general rule is "no money/no program" for grant funded services. With regard to collective bargaining, he stated that he expected that problems could be avoided, as has been done in other areas, by giving people due notice. Gillette stressed that staff has made it clear to the State that start-up funds will be needed if they want the County to do this. Weeldreyer stated that it makes sense to have WIC under the umbrella of Public Health and that she was comfortable with the bottom line and moving in a direction of bringing the program in-house. Rockstroh reported that there is not entitlement/vested right for state employees who currently hold the jobs, noting that there could be County employees who could transfer/bump in. Yaden noted that current employees are aware of that. Gillette indicated that the State will need a letter from the Board based on today’s decision. There was consensus for Gillette to draft an affirmative letter on behalf of the Board, with an emphasis on funding, and to start working with Personnel with regard to the WIC Coordinator/Dietician positions. Van Vactor noted that an Order authorizing the positions would be needed.

7. HUMAN RESOURCES AND MANAGEMENT SERVICES

a. ORAL REPORT/Progress Update on Juvenile Justice Center.

David Suchart, Director, Human Resources and Management Services, indicated that there will be monthly updates/reports from here on and that there will be copies available to the public. He distributed and reviewed the September, 1996 report (see material on file) which provided detail on current issues, plans for the next 30 days, and a budget summary. He briefly discussed property negotiations with the Elks.

Responding to Rust, Suchart confirmed that interest earnings are providing a cushion for maintaining contingency. Weeldreyer recalled that Douglas Beauchamp, the director of the Lane Arts Council, had called suggesting that Lane County consider dedicating a small percentage of the overall budget for the project for an art project involving youth. She stated that she would like the planning team to discuss that. Suchart indicated that staff has had conversations regarding using youth art, but there have not been discussions involving funding commitments. Rust commented that he would not favor a percentage set aside just for arts sake, but would rather see art incorporated into the design/structure to enhance the facility. He suggested that the Board direct the task team to come back with a range of options from strict dedication to incorporating art into the design, and including ongoing programmatic opportunities. Green agreed with Rust regarding incorporating aesthetic enhancement. Dumdi observed that the use of color/murals on the interior does not require much money. Rust suggested that the art be tied to the philosophy of corrections issues, making it more conducive to kids’ development. Suchart indicated that he would contact Beauchamp and bring this issue back in a reasonable time frame. Weeldreyer suggested setting up the display model in the PSB basement during tax season and making copies of the reports available at the information desk.

b. ORDER 96-10-1-1/In the Matter of Approving the Juvenile Justice Center Mission Statement, Values and Siting Principles.

Suchart briefly reviewed this item for the Board (see material on file). Responding to Dumdi, Van Vactor noted there had been significant debate regarding the "wellness model" which would keep the Youth Campus open to all youth. Rust suggested inserting "Lane County’s" in lieu of "community’s" in the Mission Statement. He also suggested adding a final "bullet": *aesthetics should be considered in the design and construction." Van Vactor highlighted that though the group did not deal with an interim use of the existing Skipworth facility, the plan is that the new facility will build out over time and that the issue is whether to demolish the existing office buildings and suggestions that an interim use could include temporary office space. Dumdi provided a grammatical change in the fourth "bullet" to include a semi-colon after "site." There was consensus to include the changes offered by Rust and Dumdi.

MOTION: Approval of the Order as amended. Rust MOVED, Dumdi SECONDED. VOTE: 4-0.

c. ORDER 96-10-1-2/In the Matter of Amending Chapter 2 of Lane Manual to Add Weapons Policy to Personnel Policies Provisions (LC 2.383).

Suchart briefly reviewed this item for the Board (see material on file). Green commented that the issue centers around a safe work place versus infringing on personal rights. Suchart remarked that the goal is not to infringe on anyone’s rights, but to ensure protection of all employees and community members in this environment. He indicated that specific cases of need will be dealt with separately. Weeldreyer asked if department heads have had meetings with their employees and if employees are all aware of potential changes. Suchart replied that that has not been done. Weeldreyer emphasized that she would be more comfortable approving this if all employees knew about the potential for change. Van Vactor noted that would be the Board’s policy and this type of policy has traditionally not been sent out to every employee ahead of time. He suggested that rather than sending it out individually, a better way is to use the committee (Safety Committee) process. Green concurred with Van Vactor.

Mary Dutton, AFSCME representative, stated that AFSCME is very committed to workplace safety. She quoted the bargaining agreement work rules pertaining to review of work rule changes by the union prior to implementation. Dutton remarked that this is a dramatic change in workplace policy and deserves union review of the effects of policies on employees. She noted that this did not occur with workplace violence. Dutton offered questions such as clarification on what constitutes a weapon and also regarding the right of a person to carry a concealed weapon. Responding to Rust, Teresa Wilson, County Counsel, noted that a comma should probably be inserted between "device" and "instrument" in the dangerous weapons delineation. She asked for an opportunity to review the case law regarding interpretation of language, particularly pertaining to a pocket knife. Weeldreyer stressed her belief that there is an inherent obligation to have conversations with people to be affected by change and that this could be discussed in conjunction with general departmental meetings. She observed that this provides an opportunity to enhance communications and put actions behind words. Rust noted that he would like to see implementation issues discussed, but that the Board could still adopt the policy today, although he was still concerned about the definition of "pocketknife."

MOTION: Approval of the Order. Responding to Rust’s concern regarding pocket knives, Wilson again stated that she wanted an opportunity to research case law regarding pocketknives. Rust MOVED, Dumdi SECONDED, for discussion. Dumdi asked if there was any problem with postponing this to allow AFSCME to review it. Van Vactor suggested sending it back through the Safety Committee to review with its AFSCME representatives. Weeldreyer took exception to the assertion that taking this to the employees limits the credibility of the Safety Committee. Rust commented that while this is a workplace issue and rises higher on the scale of employee involvement, it can still be amended at any time. He indicated that he would like to adopt this today and make sure employees are on notice that this could be amended. Weeldreyer commented that rather than putting staff time forward with amending the Lane Manual by approving this today, she would rather take the time to make the employees aware of this potential change. Rust remarked that the largest concern is for concealed weapons permit holders. Responding to Suchart, Dutton noted that AFSCME is still waiting for discussion regarding workplace violence.

VOTE: 2-2, Dumdi and Weeldreyer dissenting. Dumdi recommended sending out the potential change with paychecks, postponing this matter for a month and sending feedback to the Safety Committee. There was consensus to discuss this at the next meeting when there is a fifth commissioner available.

8. REVIEW ASSIGNMENTS

Weapons policy to agenda committee to set for a future agenda.

Sister County involvement issue assigned to Commissioners.

9. EMERGENCY BUSINESS

ORDER 96-10-1-3/In the Matter of Delegating Authority to the County Administrator to Sign an Amendment with HACSA in the Amount of $297,491.

MOTION: Approval of the Order. Dumdi MOVED, Rust SECONDED. VOTE: 4-0.

This meeting recessed at 10:55 a.m. to reconvene at 11:07 a.m.

3. COMMISSIONERS’ ANNOUNCEMENTS

Dumdi mentioned that she had attended the Oregon Rural Development Council meeting last week. She indicated that she had also attended the Regional Strategies meeting in Corvallis yesterday where there was $350,000 to allocate and $2.5 million in requests. Dumdi reported that she and Green had attended a dinner meeting of the OEDP where Cascades West provided an interesting presentation on floods, which discussed not only the negatives, but the positive impacts for the ecosystem. Dumdi agreed to seek a commitment from the presenters and then try to schedule a presentation for the Board.

Green announced that Item 13.a. on tomorrow’s agenda would be postponed due to a death in the family of an impacted property owner.

Green referred a letter regarding the award of a grant of $100,000 from OCDBG for Mapleton Water District design to Peter Thurston.

Referring to a letter from the Governor regarding prison siting, Van Vactor announced that a meeting was being held tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. with representatives from Salem to talk about the possibilities of a prison site in Lane County. Wilson briefly explained the "super-siting" statute which includes an opportunity for input from local jurisdictions.

There being no further business, this meeting adjourned into Executive Session at 11:20 a.m.

 

Sharon Giles, Recording Secretary

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