Commissioners’ Conference Room
Commissioner Bill Dwyer presided with Commissioners Anna Morrison and Peter Sorenson present. Cindy Weeldreyer was present via telephone. Bobby Green, Sr., was excused. County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, County Counsel Teresa Wilson and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.
1. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA
Executive Session will take place at 11:00 a.m. A letter from the Peace Pole will be discussed under Correspondence to the Board.
2. PUBLIC HEARINGS
3. PUBLIC COMMENTS
Mary O’ Brien, 3525 Gilliam Road, Eugene, reported she e-mailed Anna Morrison on Monday, August 12 and copied the commissioners about a meeting. She asked if she would receive any information about the meeting at MPC.
Morrison noted she was in the process of responding to O’Brien. She checked with County Counsel and was told she did not violate any open meetings law. She said she was invited to participate as a citizen.
Jan Wroncy, P. O. Box 1101, Eugene, passed out pictures. She stated she was an appointed member of the VMAC for eight years. She was upset that there was a proposed spraying by Lane County in a posted no spray area along Clear Lake Road. She obtained the records of the spray operation that took place on August 7. She faxed legal counsel, Public Works and the Board of Commissioners on August 6. She said that no one took any action on this. She noted the pictures showed inadequacy of signage. She said there was a sign that directly corresponded with the no spray area set up by the Corps of Engineers to protect the wetlands from spray. She added she contacted the Corps of Engineers and obtained the information that it is Corps land with an easement for the County road to go across. She said it should have had the National Environmental Policy Act documentation for the operation. She said the County should have not been involved in an operation without proper documentation. She stated someone tore off a metal tag that indicated it was a no spray area.
Sorenson asked about the status of this.
Dwyer said they sprayed. He spoke with Mike Perkins before the spraying and Perkins said the Corps of Engineers uses the County for things they couldn’t do. He believed Lane County used poor judgment in spraying that area. He stated that counsel needed to address the NEPA questions. He wanted a chronology in writing on how Lane County was elected to spray the area and what happened to the sign. He also wanted to know who removed the sign. He said Perkins told him they would go out with backpack sprayers and spray each weed individually.
Sorenson was concerned because it seemed like a violation of Lane County’s policy.
Dwyer requested this information as a report back to the Board.
4. COMMISSIONERS' REMONSTRANCE
Sorenson noted that last week the Board of Commissioners met on Thursday and there was no notice given by Lane County of the meeting of the Board. He said the County Administrator and senior staff from Public Works were present at the MPC meeting to provide support for the discussion about the natural areas study. He said when open meetings issues are raised, it exposes the County to liability and invalidates actions that the Board takes when the Board meets in those settings. He noted that Wilson gave a legal opinion that since LCOG said the meeting was noticed and more than two commissioners may attend the meeting, he thought it was LCOG’s notice and not Lane County’s notice of the Board. He said it denied him and Weeldreyer the opportunity to know this was going to be anything other than a routine MPC meeting.
Dwyer replied it was not a Board meeting. He noted staff was there as part of what was necessary, giving their information and opinion. He stated Morrison appeared as a citizen. He said there are two voting members of MPC of which Morrison was not one of them. He said there could be no meeting of the Board of Commissioners as only two members were eligible to vote. He said it was more of the City of Eugene being out of sync with their policies. He said MPC needed to consolidate everything. He stated the meetings are advertised and Sorenson receives a packet about what is on the agenda. He added that every commissioner has an opportunity to attend the meeting as a citizen. He disagreed with Sorenson because they never deliberated toward a conclusion. He said Sorenson’s concerns were not founded in fact, substance or form.
Weeldreyer was uncomfortable with the equity. She said when they speak as citizens, they are still commissioners. She added if they are providing information as citizens towards an issue that is coming to the Board of Commissioners for deliberation and action, it is a fine line.
Dwyer recalled the Board had already taken action prior to Morrison going to the meeting. He said it didn’t require any action and Morrison didn’t change anything. She [Morrison] reiterated as a citizen what she thought the Board policy was that was approved by all the Board. He said in the future instead of the LCOG notice, if a commissioner is planning on attending a meeting, to let Management Services Supervisor Arlene Marshall know so she could do other notices that might satisfy legal requirements. He noted that MPC took no action.
Morrison reiterated the Board took action on February 19, 2002 and there were three concerns that needed to go to MPC. She said it was the request of the Board of Commissioners that she present those at MPC. She noted there were two meetings that were scheduled that were cancelled and finally brought back to the agenda for the last meeting. She said everyone had ample notice that the meeting was to take place and what the agenda items were.
Dwyer noted the agenda stated that Morrison would be present.
Sorenson said County Counsel’s information didn’t change his view that this wasn’t a board meeting, or that it was noticed by LCOG. He said it was a County matter that discussed County policy that the Board had arrived at. He said it was a Board meeting that was noticed by the County.
Dwyer said it was not a Board meeting. He invited all the commissioners to attend the MPC meetings. He said that the public was present at the meeting. He said there were no surprises.
Wilson explained the public meeting law requirement is focused on making sure the public’s business is done in an open meeting and the public has notice of it. She said it was her opinion that as long as public notice is given and the minutes that are taken reflect what happens, who is in attendance and that a quorum of the County Board is present, then notice needs to reflect that possibility. She said in this instance it did. She could not find anything in the public meetings law that required each individual agency coming together at one meeting to have each individual agency give separate public notice or take separate minutes. She said one set of minutes is required.
Dwyer said he had never convened the Board. He said this was a Metropolitan Policy Committee Meeting which was in charge of the minutes and notice requirements. He added there was no action requested on the agenda that could have required deliberation.
Wilson advised that if three commissioners intend to attend any meeting, it is prudent to give public meeting notice and be sure that minutes are taken so there is not the risk of a challenge that they did have a public meeting.
Dwyer requested to ask Tony Corcoran about what happened with MPC, LCOG, the notice and the actual agenda. Dwyer said if there is no deliberation toward a conclusion, that three commissioners might attend as either part of their appointment or as a public member, if it is under the public meeting statute as a public meeting. He wanted Corcoran to ask Legislative Counsel those questions.
5. EXECUTIVE SESSION as per ORS 192.660
To take place at 11:00 a.m.
6. COMMISSIONERS' BUSINESS
a. REPORT/Vector Control.
Rob Rockstroh, Director, Health and Human Services, passed out a packet about the West Nile Virus. (Copy in file). He said there had been 11 reported deaths from West Nile Virus from the Center for Disease Control. He noted that annually 20,000 people die from influenza.
Rockstroh explained that most places run vector control May through September. He said what Lane County is doing is surveillance. He said there is an argument for spraying as the last thing that is done. He said people need to get rid of standing water. He noted they would continue working with the state to come up with a plan. He didn’t think the virus would hit this year. He said the state gives direction with this. He said from a public health standpoint there is not a significant issue relative to other risks. He said if there were incidents of disease related to the mosquito population they would respond.
Weeldreyer suggested focusing on the areas where there is standing water like Fern Ridge and Dorena Reservoir. She said there was interest in the Dorena Lake area to meet and discuss where the problems are.
Rockstroh said if West Nile Virus turned out to be a significant disease, they have the authority to have certain powers for spraying. He suggested working with the state on this matter
Weeldreyer requested working with Rockstroh and staff in organizing a meeting in the Dorena area.
b. ORDER 02-8-21-3/In the Matter of Increasing a Mental Health Supervisor Position from .50 FTE to .75 FTE and Increasing Revenue and Expense Appropriations, in Fund 286, in the Amount of $18,937, Effective July 1, 2002.
Rockstroh explained they cut the position and the revenue returned. He said they wanted to add a supervisor over the child unit.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 02-8-21-3.
Morrison MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
c. REPORT BACK/Oregon Cultural Trust.
Trina Laidlaw, Assistant County Counsel, explained that the Oregon Cultural Trust was created by the 2001 legislature. She noted the purpose is to increase collaboration and public funding for cultural initiatives. She said it will be staffed by the Secretary of State’s office and directed by a board of ten members. She said Bill Bradbury would be on the committee along with two legislators and ten citizen members appointed by the governor.
Laidlaw noted the funding for the cultural trust is tax credit for direct contributions of up to $500 per individuals and $2,500 for corporate. She stated the state didn’t know how much revenue this would generate. She noted each county would receive a portion of the fund for use in their own community by creating a county arts planning coalition or cultural planning coalition. She said the committee would develop the plan that will be approved by the state and there will be a fiscal agent involved to receive grant funds from the state and to manage the funds.
Laidlaw said Lane County is being asked to jump start the process in the community. She said the Board had been requested to recommend an initial slate of members to be on the planning committee. She said it would be approved by the state. She added there wasn’t a designated number of members, but there should be a sufficient number to represent arts, heritage, the humanities and other organizations that are relevant to community cultural events such as educational institutions, libraries, media and business. She noted the deadline for this is October 1, 2002.
Laidlaw noted the Board would be involved at the initial planning stage but then there is no involvement. The group chosen would determine what the structure would be. She said the second task was to designate an initial fiscal agent and the fiscal agent will work with the initial planning committee. She said the local coalition will make a recommendation to the state about a permanent structure that involves the fiscal agent. She added the fiscal agent would be entitled to some payment or services for the planning committee and for the permanent coalition.
Laidlaw explained the state expects for the first year for the planning component to provide between $5,000 and $10,000 to the Lane County community. She said the funds would be available after January 1, 2003. She added in July, 2003 the grants will come in that could be disbursed in the Lane County community. She noted the funds would not come to Lane County or go through the Lane County budget process; they would go to the fiscal agent. She said the state is not expecting to have a contract with Lane County for any of the programs. She added Lane County government would not be asked to assume liability for the actions of the coalition members or the fiscal agents, once they become permanent.
Laidlaw recommended treating the transition period between now and July as a period where they might have potential liability and have the fiscal agent as a professional service that is being provided. She recommended assigning this back to County Administration for an informal quote process.
Morrison asked how this would work when there was no known amount available. She questioned if this was going to really materialize.
Sorenson suggested that Van Vactor convene the representatives of a group of people at his discretion for a discussion
Van Vactor recommended setting up a process similar to the advisory committees. He added they would follow their process for the fiscal agent.
Weeldreyer thought this was a great opportunity. She said there needed to be an organized way to communicate and to generate the enthusiasm needed to raise the revenue to fund the program.
7. COUNTY ADMINISTRATION
8. PUBLIC WORKS
a. ORDER 02-8-21-1/In the Matter of Endorsing Local Agency Applications for FY 2004-2005 Funds Under the Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Program; and Authorizing the Board Chair to Sign On Behalf of the Board Signifying Act Endorsement.
Dwyer noted this was the only action item on the MPC agenda and they unanimously voted to ask Lane County to forward the grant for the City of Eugene project.
Mike Russell, Public Works, reported that the ODOT Bike and Pedestrian program is requesting applications. He said the project is designed to fund projects such as sidewalk infill, pedestrian crossing, intersection improvements and minor roadway widening for bikeways. He said that ODOT was supplying the opportunity for ACT endorsements. He said they received five applications that were reviewed by MPC.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 02-8-21-1.
Morrison MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
b. FIRST READING AND SETTING SECOND READING AND PUBLIC HEARING/Ordinance PA 1176/Naming an Unnamed Private Road, Northpole Lane (19-02-03).
MOTION: to approve a First Reading and Setting a Second Reading and Public Hearing on Ordinance PA 1176 for September 25, 2002.
Morrison MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
9. CONSENT CALENDAR
A. Approval of Minutes: None.
B. Management Services
1) ORDER 02-8-21-2/In the Matter of Authorizing the Sale of Surplus County Owned Real Property to Thomas David Wong (Map No. 19-03-28-00-003000 Adjacent to 82502 Mahr Lane, Creswell).
MOTION: to approve the Consent Calendar.
Weeldreyer MOVED, Morrison SECONDED.
10. MANAGEMENT SERVICES
a. ORDER 02-8-21-4/In the Matter of Adjusting the Classification and Salary Range Re-titling the Existing Radio Network Technician Classification to Sheriff’s Office Communications Network Coordinator.
Jan Wilbur, Management Services, reported the Sheriff’s Office brought this issue forward. She said they studied the classification and found that the radio network tech had expanded over time and became more complex with the way the system had grown. She said they also considered the fact that the IS classification increased and this position did not. She added they looked at other jurisdictions and found that the salary position is between Clackamas and Marion counties. She said they also studied Washington County but it was not a good match. She recommended the Board reclass the position to Grade 29, between the IS technician and IS analyst.
Morrison asked what would happen for next year’s budget as the costs would be more. She asked where the dollars were coming from.
Wilbur responded it would roll over into the base for next year.
Bret Freeman, Captain, Sheriff’s Office, explained that this position had been with the LCPOA. He added it does not fall under police fire retirements. He said for the next budget year they would be willing to absorb this cost within the Sheriff’s Office budget. Freeman stated the City of Eugene had been troubled by getting personnel to fill similar roles. He said because Lane County had many more radio towers, it was requiring a higher level of expertise. He stated they couldn’t afford to lose an employee.
Dwyer stated he sees a pattern that is related to other departments where they utilize monies from unfilled positions in order to cover things. He noted the legislative fiscal officer at AOC discussed how the state had solved some of their budget problems by taking all the vacated positions that were posted and put that money back into the general fund. He recommended that Lane County do the same thing. He suggested a lag of two months and if a position is not filled within two months that the money goes back into the general fund. He wanted a policy that would put a deadline on the unfilled positions and when the money is no longer in their budget, the money goes back into the general fund and it takes board action to reinstate it.
Van Vactor explained that the Management Team has been working on issues to address the pending deficits dealing with benefits, collective bargaining and vacancies. He said through the strategic plan, they would use the language and apply it. He said there are opportunities to address the future. He noted there would be a detailed report from the Leadership Team to focus on that. He recommended focusing on the strategic plan.
Weeldreyer wanted a global approach for addressing the vacancy issue. She noted the vacancies in the past had been used as a degree of flexibility at the department level to manage unexpected needs the department has. She wanted to leave flexibility with the department managers to manage their needs. She approved of the item because the radio tech position is critical to the Sheriff’s Office.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 02-8-21-4.
Weeldreyer MOVED, Morrison SECONDED.
b. DISCUSSION/Recruiting Strategy for the Department of Children and Families Director.
Utecht explained when they examined the position they came up with a profile of the job that became a brochure. (Copy in file). She noted the options for Children and Families was to be incorporated either into County Administration as a separate program or into another department as a program or division. She said they looked at the director’s position in terms of its functions, responsibilities, and scope. She added they compared it with other positions in house that have the same scope. She noted the only difference with this position at the director level is higher-level budgetary responsibility. She said when they originally studied it, they tried to ascertain what the grade level of the position would be. She noted at that time they came up with a Grade 47. She added the range for the Children and Families director position in the compensation plan is 53. She stated when the Board decided to maintain its standing as a department and the position as a director level position, she met with Van Vactor about the internal equity issues. She recommended that the position not be posted at the full range of the Grade 53. She stated that Grade 49 is the same as the County Engineer. She said they wanted enough flexibility to attract good candidates to the job, but not lock the position in at the Grade 53 level in the event they look at the department director positions in the future. She added they posted it at Step 2 through 8, with the idea that if they don’t get sufficient numbers of qualified applicants, they could always increase the salary to Step 12 of Grade 53, but if they could attract candidates at this amount, they wouldn’t be going beyond Step 8. She said this was the conservative and most flexible way to post the position.
c. ORDER 02-8-21-5/In the Matter of creating and filling a temporary office assistant 2 position in human resources to support the PeopleSoft upgrade.
Utecht noted they have been upgrading the PeopleSoft software for payroll and finance issues. She said during the budget process she requested an add package for a position to support the upgrade. She said it was not part of what was approved with the budget. She asked for a half-time temporary to backfill the people who are experts in PeopleSoft until they get their upgrade. She added since she wrote the order, they had lost both people at their front counter. She stated PeopleSoft would be delayed for three months. She asked to have authority for approval once the PeopleSoft project is back on board.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 02-8-21-5.
Morrison MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
11. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS
Morrison introduced Commissioner Colleen MacLeod. She and MacLeod will be meeting with President Bush. She announced on Monday she would be part of the O & C group that will be meeting with Kathleen Clark, the Director of the Bureau of Land Management.
Weeldreyer reported she and Sorenson are working on interviews for vacancies on the Planning Commission and the Metro Partnership Board.
12. CORRESPONDENCE TO THE BOARD
Dwyer noted the Board received a letter about a peace pole. He rolled this item to the next meeting.
Dwyer read a letter from Mona Lindstromberg into the record.
Sorenson suggested the agenda team set up a work session, including Mona Lindstromberg.
13. EMERGENCY BUSINESS
There being no further business, Commissioner Dwyer recessed the meeting at 12:00 p.m.