WATAUGA COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1998
The Watauga County Board of Commissioners held a regular meeting on Tuesday, November 17, 1998 at 7:00 P.M. in the Board Room of the Watauga County Courthouse.
PRESENT: James Coffey, Chairman
Jack D. Lawrence, Sr., Vice-Chairman
Linda S. Craig, Commissioner
Jimmy Hodges, Commissioner
Jack Wellborn, Commissioner
Stacy C. Eggers, Jr., County Attorney
James S. Ratchford, County Manager
Libby Link, Clerk to the Board
Chairman Coffey called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M. welcoming those in attendance.
A moment of silence was observed.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Chairman Coffey called for additions or corrections to the November 2, 1998 regular minutes and the November 9, 10 and 12, 1998 special meeting minutes; there being none, they were approved as presented.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Chairman Coffey called for additions or corrections to the November 17, 1998 agenda.
County Manager Ratchford requested that Cherry Johnson be deleted from the agenda per her wishes.
Commissioner Hodges seconded by Commissioner Wellborn, moved to approve the agenda for the November 17, 1998 regular meeting with the amendment.
PUBLIC HEARING – COUNTY GOVERNMENT
HELICON CABLE FRANCHISE EXTENSION & TRANSFER
Chairman Coffey declared a public hearing open at 7:02 p.m. to consider the transfer of FrontierVision’s Cable TV Franchise to Helicon Cable Communications, as well as, an extension of Helicon’s franchise period to the year 2012.
Veterans Service Officer/Safety Director Jim Harmon stated there were two documents which required Board approval – a Cable Television Franchise Agreement (which stipulated that the rebuild of the system would take place by December 31, 1999) and a resolution which authorized the transfer and extension of Helicon’s Cable Television Franchise period to December 31, 2012. If approved, this extension would be a 10-year extension on Helicon’s current franchise. He added that Tony Barlage, Helicon Cable TV Director, and Don Geisler, FrontierVision Regional Government Relations Manager, were present to answer questions.
Mr. Barlage addressed the Board stating Helicon was looking forward to providing adequate cable service to citizens throughout the County. He stated system upgrades would be completed in the Meat Camp and Zionville areas of the County providing those residents with the same channel line-up that current subscribers received. Mr. Barlage added that the public would be notified of this transaction.
There being no public comment, Chairman Coffey declared the public hearing closed at 7:08 p.m.
Commissioner Wellborn seconded by Commissioner Craig, moved to approve the Cable Television Franchise Agreement.
Vice-Chairman Lawrence seconded by Commissioner Hodges, moved to accept the resolution.
RESOLUTION BOOK #9, PAGE #44
BEECH MOUNTAIN VFD 5-MILE DISTRICT MAP RESOLUTION
Planning & Inspections Director Joe Furman presented a 5-mile fire insurance rated map proposal from the Beech Mountain Volunteer Fire Department (VFD). Mr. Furman noted that all other fire departments in the County had implemented the 5-mile fire insurance rated district, and the Beech Mountain VFD was the final department requesting approval. Beech Mountain VFD Chief, Jim Brooks, stated any conflicts with the adjoining VFDs had been resolved.
Commissioner Wellborn seconded by Vice-Chairman Lawrence, moved to approve the 5-mile insurance district for the Beech Mountain VFD.
RESOLUTION BOOK #9, PAGE #43
STATE AGING FUNDS PROPOSAL
Project on Aging Director Rocky Nelson addressed the Board stating notification was received from the State that an additional $20,790 in State Aging funds had been allocated to Watauga County. These funds required a local match of $2,310 which was present in the agency budget. Mr. Nelson requested the funds be allocated as follows:
$10,080 to Home Delivered Meals services in order to serve more meals to more clients with special attention to outlying areas of the County.
$10,710 to the In-Home Aide services in order to address the current waiting list for services. These funds would allow an additional half-time regular position to be added.
Account # Description Debit Credit
105550-412100 Sal.-Reg. 8,000
105550-418100 Soc. Sec. Cont. 1,300
105550-418300 Hosp. Ins. Exp. 600
105550-422000 Food & Provisions 8,000
105550-429200 Prog. Supplies 2,080
105550-431100 Travel-Mileage 810
Vice-Chairman Lawrence seconded by Commissioner Wellborn, moved to approve the grant application and the budget amendment with the funds to be used as stated.
PARKS & RECREATION MATTERS
Parks & Recreation Director Deb Wynne addressed the Board regarding several issues.
The first item regarded revising the Parks & Recreation Refund/Special Credit Policy. The Recreation Commission and Ms. Wynne recommended the following changes be made to the current policy:
- That persons make any special credit request five (5) days prior to the start of that program.
- All monetary refund requests be made in writing to the Recreation Director within thirty days of the verbal request.
Ms. Wynne stated County Attorney Eggers had reviewed the revised policy.
Commissioner Craig seconded by Vice-Chairman Lawrence, moved to approve the revisions to the County’s Parks & Recreation Refund/Special Credit Policy as recommended.
The second issue involved permission to submit a Very Special Arts Application to receive $600 to help fund the Very Special Arts Festival. Ms. Wynne stated Parks & Recreation planned to have its annual Very Special Arts Festival on December 4, 1998. The additional grant funds would enable Parks & Recreation to better serve over 200 disabled participants who attend the Very Special Arts Festival each year.
Commissioner Wellborn seconded by Commissioner Hodges, moved to approve this grant application.
In the last item of business, Ms. Wynne requested allowing the Parks & Recreation Department and the Planning & Inspections Department to work together to prepare a comprehensive plan for recreational activities and facilities throughout the County. Planning & Inspections Director Furman stated the purpose of this was to apply objective standards to assess what was needed, compare that to the public’s ideas and then devise a plan. In addition, this objective could help with getting grant funds in the future. Mr. Furman added his staff would be able to work on this project as well as maintain existing duties.
Commissioner Hodges seconded by Commissioner Wellborn, moved for the Planning & Inspections Department and the Parks & Recreation Department to work together to complete this study as proposed.
TRANSFER STATION REPAVING BIDS
Assistant County Manager/OSD Bob Frye stated the following bids had been received to repave the access road and parking area at the County’s transfer station.
Brown Brothers Construction Company $51,372.00
Stout Construction Company $47,998.50
(submitted bid on behalf of Moretz Paving Company)
Vannoy Construction Company $59,770.00
Mr. Frye noted that Stout Construction Company would be sub-contracting the paving work with Moretz Paving Company, because Mr. Moretz was not a licensed contractor in North Carolina as required to bid on the project. He added funds had been included in this year’s budget to cover this expense and requested the Board approve the low bidder, Stout Construction Company.
Commissioner Craig seconded by Vice-Chairman Lawrence, moved to approve the Stout Construction Company bid of $47,998.50.
MISCELLANEOUS ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS
A. Register of Deeds DP System Budget Amendment – County Manager Ratchford presented the following budget amendment for Board approval:
Account # Description Debit Credit
213991-399101 Fund Bal.-Cap. Res. DP $176,293
219800-498010 Transfer to Gen. Fund $176,293
103980-398000 Transfer from Other Funds $176,293
104210-452001 Capital Outlay-ROD $160,493
104210-439501 Training-ROD install. $ 15,000
104180-426000 Office Supplies $ 800
To appropriate funds from Capital Reserve Fund Balance to fund the acquisition and installation of the Register of Deeds imaging system. Bid approved at the November 2, 1998 Board Meeting. Summary detail below:
Approved Bid – Mackin Imaging Systems $164,633
Less: Training Component of Bid $ 15,000 (separate line item)
Additional Cost – Outside Contract
Front-end Interface $5,760
Dedicated Phone Line $ 300 $ 10,860
Total $160,493 (separate line item)
Workstations $ 800 (separate line item)
Total Bid $164,633
Additional Costs $ 10,860
Workstations $ 800
Commissioner Craig seconded by Vice-Chairman Lawrence, moved to approve the budget amendment as presented.
Boards & Commissions – Chairman Coffey noted board appointments were needed for the following: Watauga Medical Center Board of Trustees and Watauga County Adult Care Home Community Advisory Committee.
Watauga Medical Center Board of Trustees - Chairman Coffey noted the following board members’ terms would expire 12/31/98: John Blackburn, Dale Greene, Paige Murray and Kenneth Wilcox. Watauga Medical Center submitted the following individuals for appointments for three-year terms:
Mr. John Blackburn Mr. Paige Murray
Mr. Fred Connor Mrs. Joni Petschauer
Mr. Dale Greene Mrs. Grace Robbins
Mrs. Reba Moretz Mr. Kenneth Wilcox
The following votes were made:
Chairman Coffey – John Blackburn, Dale Greene, Grace Robbins, Kenneth Wilcox
Vice-Chairman Lawrence – John Blackburn, Dale Greene, Paige Murray, Kenneth Wilcox
Commissioner Craig – John Blackburn, Dale Greene, Grace Robbins, Kenneth Wilcox
Commissioner Hodges – John Blackburn, Dale Greene, Paige Murray, Kenneth Wilcox
Commissioner Wellborn – John Blackburn, Dale Greene, Grace Robbins, Kenneth Wilcox
Based on the results of the vote, the following individuals were appointed to the Watauga Medical Center Board of Trustees for three year terms:
John Blackburn, Dale Greene, Grace Robbins, Kenneth Wilcox
Watauga County Adult Care Home Community Advisory Committee - Chairman Coffey noted that Angie Greene had agreed to continue to serve.
Vice-Chairman Lawrence seconded by Commissioner Hodges, moved to reappoint Angie Greene to the Watauga County Adult Care Home Community Advisory Committee for a three year term.
C. VFD Washing Machine Agreement – County Manager Ratchford presented an agreement between the County and the Firefighter’s Association that defined each parties’ responsibility for the new washing machines which the County planned to purchase for their use.
Commissioner Wellborn seconded by Vice-Chairman Lawrence, moved to approve the agreement.
D. Region D Resolution – Region D Council of Governments (Region D COG) requested approval of a resolution which, if approved, would release State funds ($8,994.38) to Region D COG for economic development assistance to local governments.
Commissioner Craig seconded by Vice-Chairman Lawrence, moved to approve the resolution.
RESOLUTION BOOK #9, PAGE #47
E. Subdivision Performance Agreement – Planning & Inspections Director Joe Furman presented a subdivision performance guarantee from Terry and Margaret Butler for their development, Sugarloaf Ridge. The guarantee was an Irrevocable Standby Letter of Credit in the amount of $10,000 from Branch Banking and Trust Company. This agreement was proposed to guarantee completion of the subdivision road subsequent to final plat approval. Mr. Furman requested Board approval.
Vice-Chairman Lawrence seconded by Commissioner Hodges, moved to approve this subdivision performance guarantee from Terry and Margaret Butler.
A recess was declared at 7:36 P.M.
Commissioner Craig seconded by Vice-Chairman Lawrence, moved to enter closed session at 7:45 P.M. to discuss: Attorney/Client Matters – G.S. 143-318.11(a)(3), landfill litigation.
Commissioner Craig seconded by Vice-Chairman Lawrence, moved to resume the regular meeting at 8:20 P.M.
Commissioner Craig seconded by Vice-Chairman Lawrence, moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:21 P.M.
Elizabeth H. Link
Clerk to the Board