BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'
March 14, 2001
Commissioners' Conference Room
Commissioner Anna Morrison presided with Commissioners Bill Dwyer, Bobby Green, Sr., Peter Sorenson and Cindy Weeldreyer present. County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, County Counsel Teresa Wilson and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.
1. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA
Morrison noted there would be an emergency business item, an Executive Session (carried over from yesterday) and item 6. a. on the agenda had been pulled.
2. PUBLIC COMMENTS
3. EXECUTIVE SESSION as per ORS 192.660
To take place after the meeting.
4. COMMISSIONERS' BUSINESS
a. REPORT BACK/L-COG Fees for Work on Commissioner Boundaries.
Clair Van Bloem, LCOG, stated there were developed estimates based on a cost adjustment for a fee of $6,780 in this fiscal year that was $1,500 less than estimated. She noted the least costly option was $12,380 (what was in the plan without any maps). She added the second option gave the task force an interactive session with the software, the boundaries and a large display map. She said the third option included two interactive sessions with the task force and display maps for all five commissioner districts.
Morrison said the total under option 2 of $13,330 is what the Board was interested in. She was in support of Option 2 because the mapping piece will be of real value.
Green stated he had asked for something in writing for a discounted price to Lane County. He asked if this was the discounted price.
Van Bloem stated they subsidized it by $2,000.
MOTION: to approve Option 2 a.
Green MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.
Dwyer suggested putting in another $800 for the maps and display.
Van Bloem responded it would be just an additional $500.
b. REPORT BACK AND ORDER 01-3-14-1/In the Matter of the Board of Commissioners' Redistricting Information.
Annette Newingham, Elections, explained this was to decide the task force members including the additional two “at large” positions.
Sorenson chose Scott Bartlett as his member on the committee.
MOTION: to approve Steve Moe and Greg Evans as representatives at large.
Green MOVED, Weeldreyer SECONDED.
c. UPDATE/Legislative Committee.
Tony Bieda, Intergovernmental Relations, reported that he had nothing to report as things were changing with more up to date revenue projects.
Dwyer noted that they were monitoring most of the bills.
Bieda explained that on HB 2389, they took the position of monitoring and potential support; on HB 2517, the committee voiced concern of opposition and is deemed to be unnecessary and duplicative of protections that are already in place and they will monitor that; HB 2738 pertains to the ability of the Sheriff’s Office to be able to collect additional resources for supporting the corrections operations. He noted there was support for that concept.
Van Vactor noted that Lane County was charging as much as they could for corrections operations and to push it any further would be counterproductive.
Bieda noted with SB 538, making safety issues as it relates to law enforcement, they are recommending opposition as it is duplicative of protections in place.
Bieda explained that HB 2770 pertains to the requirement of an arbitrator to give first priority to the interest and welfare of the public in binding arbitration with strike prohibited public employee unions. He said the legislative committee discussed it in terms of additional freedom that arbitrators would have in resolving conflicts between various employee groups and the County. He said it would not be to the advantage of the County in those situations.
Bieda said SB 585 will attempt to extend or enhance the PERS retirement benefits for different classifications of employee groups supported by different public employee entities across the state. He said this was one of many and because there was no basis to make an additional enhancement, the preference was to oppose this.
With regard to SB 457, HB 2587 and HB 2666, Bieda said the legislative committee discussed the need to migrate in an orderly fashion to new voter technology but without a funding source this wouldn’t be in the County’s best interest.
Van Vactor noted that Annette Newingham would bring the subject of the optical scanner to the budget.
Newingham noted a scanner is expensive. She added the reliability of the punch card system had worked well.
Bieda noted HB 2087 and HB 2485 were discussed by the legislative committee on the basis of opposing bills that would mandate changes in the way drop sites were handled in the collection of ballots. He added they were monitoring HB 2668 on the HACSA issue.
Regarding SB 4408 and SB 2479, Bieda said they had not codified their position because they were trying to obtain from Assessment and Taxation, the full impact on Lane County. He said they would be bringing this analysis back to the Board.
With HB 5030, Bieda recommended opposition, affecting lottery and federal funds collected for marine board purposes. He added it would restrict the amount of revenue that Lane County would be able to obtain for marine parks and operations in Lane County. He noted on HB 2153 they were recommending opposition. He said they were discussing the impact of HB 2546 with the County Assessor to see if it had any merit. He said it looks like it had problems.
Bieda reported with HB 2026, they would support it if modified and they need more evaluation from Assessment and Taxation. He said regarding SB 470, there was strong thought to oppose it as it created complications.
MOTION: to approve the Legislation Report and the recommendations.
Dwyer MOVED, Weeldreyer SECONDED.
d. ORDER 01-3-14-2/In the Matter of Appointing and Reappointing Members to Serve on the Eugene-Springfield Metropolitan Partnership Board.
Morrison reported that she and Weeldreyer reviewed the applications.
Weeldreyer stated of the three candidates for appointments, two were continuing for a second term, Bev McDuffy and Larry Warford. She said there was only one slot available and they agreed that Larry McMullan would be a good candidate.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 01-3-14-2.
Weeldreyer MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.
Weeldreyer noted they staggered the terms of the candidates so there is not a complete turnover.
Morrison read the order into the record. She noted that Bev McDuffy was reappointed and her term expires December 2002, Larry McMullan was a new appointment, expiring December 2003 and Larry Warford, reappointment, expiring December 2004.
e. ORDER 01-3-14-3/In the Matter of Adopting the Lane County Strategic Plan and Directing the Strategic Planning Steering Committee to Develop an Implementation Plan and Guide the County and County Departments Through the Implementation of the Strategic Plan.
Tanya Heaton, Budget Analyst, reported they had been working on this plan since August 1999.
Weeldreyer noted that refining the communications plan and promoting electronic access to public services were not assigned. She said at their last meeting there was an assignment to plan an effort for electronic access for the technology management team.
Heaton responded it was not voted as a top priority, but the committee could be added.
Green stated this had taken longer than he had anticipated. He was pleased that they now have something in place.
Van Vactor noted with the temporary reassignment of Greta Utecht, to personnel, County Administration had been operating with two budget analysts. He said there couldn’t be a lot of staff work done on some of the elements of the plan until this fall, once staff is stabilized.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 01-2-14-3.
Green MOVED, Weeldreyer SECONDED.
5. COUNTY ADMINISTRATION
6. PUBLIC WORKS
a. DISCUSSION AND ACTION/Considering a Protest, by Joe Johns, Inc., of Bid Award, to Dewald Northwest, for the Purchase of Dropboxes, in the Amount of $76,566.00.
7. CONSENT CALENDAR
A. Approval of Minutes:
October 30, 2000, Joint BCC/Florence, 5:15 p.m.
November 7, 2000, Regular Meeting, following Board of Health
January 10, 2001, Regular Meeting, 9:00 a.m.
January 10, 2001, Regular Meeting, 1:30 p.m.
January 31, 2001, Regular Meeting, 9:00 a.m.
February 14, 2001, Regular Meeting, 1:30 p.m.
B. County Counsel
1) ORDER 01-3-14-4/In the Matter of Amending Chapter 4 of Lane Manual to Authorize Administrative Procedures for Use of Computer Resources and Information Technology.
C. Health and Human Services
1) ORDER 01-3-14-5/In the Matter of Accepting the 2001-03 Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment Implementation Plan.
2) ORDER 01-3-14-6/In the Matter of Accepting Two Intergovernmental Agreements 90550 and 90551 in the Amount of $93,324.39 and $67,254.89 for Public Health Nurse Services for the Period from February 1, 2001 Through June 30, 2002 with the State Office of Services to Children and Families; Authorizing the County Administrator to Sign the Two Agreements; and Appropriating an Additional $2,224 in Revenues and Expenses in Fund 86 in the Department of Health and Human Services (34).
3) RESOLUTION AND ORDER 01-3-14-7/In the Matter of Appropriating an Additional $33,336 in Revenue and Expenditures in Fund 286 for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities (RGA 056 to the 1999-2001 Intergovernmental Agreement 20-001).
D. Management Services
1) ORDER 01-3-14-8/In the Matter of Ratifying the Revised Tentative Agreement Between Lane County and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local, 2831-Nurses Unit.
E. Public Works
1) ORDER 01-3-14-9/In the Matter of Awarding a Contract to Egge Sand & Gravel, LLC in the Amount of $40,857 for Base Rock Production – Various Stockpile Sites, Contract No. 00/01-03.
F. Workforce Partnership
1) ORDER 01-3-14-10/In the Matter of Appointing a Member to the Lane Workforce Partnership Board of Directors.
MOTION: to approve the Consent Calendar.
Green MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
8. HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
a. RESOLUTION AND ORDER 01-3-14-11/In the Matter of Appointing Two Members to Fill Vacancies to the Health Advisory Committee.
Morrison noted they were appointing Jan Nelson and Kathryn A. Thomas and they are both at large positions to fill the vacancies.
Green MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
9. COMMISSIONERS' BUSINESS
a. REPORT/Progress Report on List of County Owned Real Estate.
Jeff Turk, Management Services, reported that last fall the Board requested a list of county owned properties. He said that he and Brian Evans from Public Works had been working on the list. He discussed the partial list that had been compiled. (Copy in file). He noted they are working on a database for the information.
Morrison stated this was an improvement. She asked if information about the foreclosed properties would be forthcoming.
Turk responded that road fund properties are also part of the right-of-way and had never gone through the official legalization process. He added the list should be completed by June.
Morrison requested this come back to the capital improvements committee and then to the Board to see what they would do with some of the properties.
Green wanted them to report what the options would be for these properties.
Dwyer stated that the Parks Department and the Roads Advisory Committee need to evaluate properties so they are not disposing of any land that has public benefit and value.
Morrison suggested bringing this information to the facilities committee and then going back to the Board.
Green recommended the committee establishing criteria for the properties.
Dwyer concurred with Green and also recommended a review process.
10. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS
11. EMERGENCY BUSINESS
ORDER 01-3-14-12/In the Matter of Appointing Justice Pro Tem For the Oakridge Justice Court and Appointing a Sitting Justice of the Peace as Pro Tem for all Lane County Justice Courts.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 01-3-14-12.
Weeldreyer MOVED, Green SECONDED.
6. COMMITTEE REPORTS
a. REPORT/External Financial Audit FY 2000 and Management Letter.
(Continued from March 13, 2001 meeting)
Mike Lewis, Jones and Roth, explained they had already presented the audit and financial statement and management letter to Finance and Audit Committee. He noted this was the second year in auditing the financial statements for Lane County and they were able to complete the audit on a more timely basis. He said they had comments in the management letter with decentralization, single audit issues, fixed asset issues, payroll, bank accounts and others. He said they needed to spend more time with the restructure of the finance division.
Lewis said their observation is that the finance manager provides all of the financial information and it precludes the financial manager from allocating much time for the external and internal reporting functions that they like to see within the County. Lewis added it also precluded the manager from allocating time as a liaison to other departments. Lewis’ recommendation for the financial division structure is that the Board should evaluate the workload and the personnel resources and either create a new position or review what is happening within the finance department. He noted Lane County’s response was that the finance division is responsible for meeting budget and operational issues and not operational needs.
Morrison asked if it would benefit the County to have a chief financial officer.
Lewis responded it could help.
Morrison noted it would be best if the Board could manage proactively with the monies that they have.
Green asked Van Vactor what his ideas were on the matter.
Van Vactor responded that they have had lengthy discussions for the last year on where the County was going with finance. He said they focused resources on restoring the personnel function of Human Resources. He added it would be an appropriate time to visit the finance section.
David Suchart, Management Services, had been evaluating the department with current staff. He said he has to make reductions and there are needs in the finance area which he can’t meet.
Lewis said their concern was the system problem and making sure it is solved. He noted the County had situations where they were spending weeks reconciling reports after they had closed out a grant because they have separate systems. He was not sure whether there should be a CEO or a finance manager doing that. He said a finance manager would be more responsible for the day to day operation, whereas an operational person would think about making a department more efficient, saving more tax dollars.
Sorenson asked what would go away to accommodate this position.
Suchart responded that nothing would go away. He said the finance manager does a number of responsibilities that could be delegated to the senior people and accounting supervisor. He said it would be the people below that position taking more responsibility for some of the tasks, including more contacts with departments.
Morrison didn’t agree with Suchart. She said that part should go back to Finance and Audit within a quick period of time for review. Her concern was people working out of class and issues that need to be reviewed.
Lewis reported that many procedures vary between the departments including inconsistent cut-off procedures, inadequate segregation of duties and duplication of efforts. He noted there was a lack of communication between the Finance Department and other departments. He said they had worked with the County to reconcile some of the issues. He said decentralized and consistent procedures would have benefits for the County. He said their recommendation is that the information that is needed be analyzed by the finance division including meeting with departments and accounting staff to implement more consistent procedures and provide training at the department level. He added they need to establish a system for monitoring and implementation.
Sorenson asked if the County should eliminate decentralization, going for standardized policies and a procedures manual.
Lewis responded the County needed standard policies and procedures to make sure that the records are accurate.
Morrison noted that decentralization and how to deal with it came up frequently in the strategic plan.
Lewis said the single audit issues on decentralization and monitoring were similar. He said they didn’t find any problem with the departments and grant requirements with eligibility.
Morrison’s concern was utilizing the dollars to get more service, and if the County was really benefiting people.
Van Vactor noted grants have hidden impacts. He added because the County has been financially constrained there has been pressure to get grants.
Green said the Board could give further direction when an item is processed. He asked how the Board could help.
Van Vactor suggested the Board should ask about additional costs.
Dwyer suggested that in reviewing the performance evaluation of a department head, the criteria should include compliance with finance, as it is an important part of the review process.
On the Short Mountain Landfill, Lewis reported that the County is getting the necessary permits to expand. He said the most significant issue is wetlands. He noted that the engineering staff estimated that the current landfill would reach capacity by January 3, 2003, if expansion were not allowed at the cost of closing the landfill at $9 million and the postclosure to be $18.9 million. Their recommendation was to develop a contingency plan in case Short Mountain is not approved and developing a plan to fund the post closure costs.
Morrison noted that as they were reviewing this at the finance and audit level, they talked about having an update done with the closure costs. She said they would have a better idea of the costs as they move forward.
With regard to fixed assets, Lewis reported there was a significant investment that exceeded $143 million and he wanted the records detailed and accurate. Their recommendation was to conduct physical inventories on selected portions of fixed assets to make sure they are there and to implement procedures to make sure the records are maintained accurately and updated.
Green raised the issue about direct deposit. He asked the Board if that was something they wanted Finance and Audit to pursue. He noted he continues to get those requests from employees.
Weeldreyer said she had been asking for direct deposit since 1993.
Van Vactor explained it was not a simple issue to set up in Lane County. He added there are six bargaining units and it would have a major impact on payroll.
Morrison stated she was not opposed to it but there were other major things that needed to be taken care of that were more important than the payroll issue.
Green wanted the minutes to reflect that he brought up the payroll issue and that there was not board support to move this forward.
Sorenson said technology should be used if it would mean lower costs and direct deposit would fit into that category. He added that accepting credit cards for paying property taxes should also be considered.
Suchart responded if direct deposit were implemented, it would save money but if there wasn't 100% compliance they would have to run a duplicate system, and it would cost more. He thought it should be provided to employees, but there were higher priorities.
Green noted there were too many barriers for direct deposit to move forward. He was hoping there could have been a conversation on how to move forward instead of reasons why they couldn’t go ahead with this.
MOTION: to approve the external audit and management letter.
Dwyer MOVED, Green SECONDED.
There being no further business, Commissioner Morrison recessed the meeting into Executive Session at 11:55 a.m.