STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA            )                    OFFICE OF THE COMMISSIONERS

                                                            )                    STOKES COUNTY GOVERNMENT

COUNTY OF STOKES                     )                    DANBURY, NORTH CAROLINA

                                                            )                    FEBRUARY 19, 2007

 

 

 

           

            The Board of Commissioners of the County of Stokes, State of North Carolina, met

 

to continue the Board Retreat in the Commissioners’ Chambers of the Ronald Wilson

 

Reagan Memorial Building (Administrative Building) located in Danbury, North Carolina on

 

Monday, February 19, 2007 at 4:00 pm with the following members present:

 

                                                Chairman Leon Inman

                                                Vice-Chairman Jimmy Walker

Commissioner Ron Carroll                                               

Commissioner Ernest Lankford

                                                Commissioner Stanley Smith

 

                                                County Personnel in Attendance:

                                                Clerk to the Board/Interim County Manager Darlene Bullins

                                                Finance Director Julia Edwards

                                                Support Services Supervisor Danny Stovall

                                                Vehicle Maintenance Supervisor Elwood Mabe

                                   

                                     Others in Attendance:

                                     Executive Director JoAnn Larkins                                   

                                     Charlie Walker – YVEDDI Transportation

 

Chairman Leon Inman called the meeting to order.

 

Commissioner Smith delivered the invocation.

 

GENERAL GOVERNMENT-GOVERNING BODY-PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

 

            Chairman Inman opened the meeting by inviting the citizens in attendance to

 

join the Board with the Pledge of Allegiance. 

 

 

 

 

GENERAL GOVERNMENT – GOVERNING BODY – PROPOSED YVEDDI/COUNTY GARAGE FACILITY

 

            Executive Director JoAnn Larkins and Charlie Walker – YVEDDI met with the

 

Board to discuss the proposed YVEDDI/County Garage Facility.  Interim County Manager

 

Darlene Bullins, Support Services Supervisor Danny Stovall and Vehicle Maintenance

 

Supervisor Elwood Mabe (Stokes County) who have worked with Charlie Walker on the

 

proposed project were also in attendance for the discussion regarding the proposed facility.

 

            Chairman Inman reiterated the need to make sure all aspects of the proposed project

 

were covered in order to get the project started as soon as possible.

 

            Mr. Walker-YVEDDI noted the following regarding the proposed project:

 

·        Spoke with NCDOT engineers today who will be approving the scope of the project

·        Reiterated to NCDOT the need for approval in order to move an existing helipad and to get the project started as soon as possible

·        Approval is expected to be received by YVEDDI within the next two weeks from NCDOT Public Transportation

·        Proposed facility is 40x140 with a 16ft IE, metal structure with a brick or rock front, 3 (30 ft) bays

·        Funding will be available for site preparation and paving

·        Maintenance on the YVEDDI vehicles will be performed by Stokes County such as changing brakes, hoses, oil changes, general maintenance etc. on 16 vehicles

·        YVEDDI will fund the salary for a part time employee who will work under the supervisor of the county

·        Major repairs such as transmission problems will not be performed by the County

·        Need to work on the amp service to the building

·        Any item in question will be discussed between YVEDDI and the County before bids are released

·        Formal bids will be released after approval from the State

·        Permits will be obtained after approval from the State

·        Need to get the project started before June 30, 2007

·        NCDOT in Raleigh has 4 bids for review

 

Commissioner Lankford noted the following regarding the proposed facility:

 

·        Reiterated that the helipad would not hold the proposed project up

·        Expressed the County’s desire to see the proposed project start as soon as possible

·        County will help in anyway possible to get the project started as soon as possible

 

Vice Chairman Walker noted the following regarding the proposed facility:

 

·        Need to plan for the future

·        Concern for the need of a fourth bay

·        Advantages of having a fourth bay

 

Commissioner Carroll noted that there would be office space available in the

 

Community Services Building when YVEDDI moved into the new facility.

 

Vehicle Maintenance Supervisor Elwood Mabe noted the following regarding the

 

proposed facility:

 

·        Fourth bay would be very valuable for the county

·        Funding available in capital reserve for lifts

·        Existing equipment can be transferred to the new facility

 

Support Services Supervisor Danny Stovall noted the following regarding the

 

proposed facility:

 

·        Need for garage door openers

·        Need for county staff to review the bid proposal to ensure items are included needed by the county

 

The Board discussed the pros and cons of adding a fourth bay at the time of

 

construction, desire to get the project started, proposed schedule for the proposed project and

 

the need to start the project before June 30, 2007.

 

            Commissioner Lankford confirmed with Charlie Walker that the proposed project

 

is ready and just waiting for NCDOT’s approval. Charlie Walker confirmed that YVEDDI

 

was only waiting for NCDOT’s approval to start the proposed project.

 

            Chairman Inman reiterated to Charlie Walker the County’s commitment to get the

 

project started as soon as possible and informed the Interim County Manager to assist

 

YVEDDI if the County could be of any further assistance.

 

GENERAL GOVERNMENT – GOVERNING BODY – BOARD RETREAT- CONTINUATION

 

The Board continued the Board Retreat.

 

User Friendly

 

            The Board continued discussion regarding User Friendly Departments.

 

Commissioner Carroll noted that expectations had been set by the Board regarding

 

User Friendly Departments and questioned if the Board needed to make training available to

 

Department Heads and/or employees to accomplish this expectation.

 

            The Board discussed the need to make sure that training was available if needed by

 

employees.  The Board continued discussion regarding expectations of departments to treat

 

citizens with dignity, respect, and courtesy.  Commissioner Lankford noted the need to

 

revise county’s personnel policy manual to include user-friendly expectations.

 

            The Board directed Interim County Manager Bullins to poll the department heads

 

regarding the following:

 

·        What each department is currently doing to be user friendly?

·        What plans are the departments making to meet the Board’s expectations of User Friendly?

·        What can each department do to make their department more user-friendly?

·        Does any department need training to achieve the Board’s expectation?

 

Interim County Manager Bullins noted that plans are being considered to provide

 

departments with a workshop at a staff meeting regarding “user friendly”.

 

Goals

 

            Chairman Inman requested Board members to present their top goals.

 

 

 

            Commissioner Carroll noted the following goals:

 

·        District System

·        Community College present in the County

·        School Facilities

·        Economic Development and Infrastructure

 

Commissioner Lankford noted the following goals:

 

·        Health Care Issues

·        County Vision

·        2- 4 year County planning

 

Vice Chairman Walker noted the following goals:

 

·        Economic Development Infrastructure

·        Water and Sewer Authority

·        I-74 Corridor

·        Pinnacle Area – Development of Businesses

·        Recreation

·        Staffing of County Departments

·        Privatizing EMS – Convalescent Care

·        Schools

·        Historical Preservation

·        Tourism

 

Commissioner Smith noted the following goals:

 

·        Reopening of King Clinic

·        Health Department Services

·        County owned facilities

·        EMS- location at Sauratown Vol. Fire Department

·        Salary Study

 

Chairman Inman noted the following goals:

 

·        Reopening of King Clinic

·        Old Prison Camp Facility – clean up

·        FTCC – Stand alone facility

·        Economic Development

·        Infrastructure

 

 

 

 

King Clinic

 

            The Board discussed the following issues regarding the reopening of the King Clinic:

 

·        Originally called the Southwestern Service Center for Stokes County

·        Originally had services at the center provided by Social Services, Mental Health, Sheriff’s Department, etc

·        Staffing an issue with the Health Department – need to fill vacancies before opening the clinic per Health Director Don Moore

 

Other County Owned Facilities

 

The Board discussed the following issues regarding the reopening of the Old Prison

 

Camp located on Highway #89:

 

·        Need to begin to clean up the area

·        No longer a prison camp, need for it to look like a facility other than a prison camp

 

Vision Statement for Stokes County

 

The Board suggested the following visions for consideration:

 

·        Framing our future through Agriculture, utilities, businesses, education and tourism.

·        Stokes County: North Carolina’s best-kept secret.

·        Stokes County the place to be.

·        Stokes County is a good place to be, not just to be from.

·        Stokes County is a beautiful place with good, honest, hard working people.

·        Stokes County will be a great place to live, work, and play by preserving our natural aesthetic heritage and embracing the future.

·        Stokes County to become the most outstanding County in the area.

·        Stokes County is a natural wonder of the Sauratown Mountains.

 

The Board discussed the visions proposed by the Board members, the vision that will

 

take Stokes County into the future, what makes Stokes County an outstanding place,

 

capitalizing on the features that Stokes County has to offer, and the goals needed to get Stokes

 

County where it needs to be.

 

 

 

 

Chairman Inman directed the Board members to review the vision statements

 

submitted and for each member to have their vision statement for Stokes County ready for the

 

next retreat meeting.

 

Goals

 

            The Board discussed goals for the future of Stokes County.

 

Commissioner Lankford noted the following short-term goals:

 

·        Improve the fund balance this year by 3% to a total of 12% by the end of

 June 2008 – approximately $1 million

·        Review county departments – staffing

·        Review legal needs – county attorney versus staff attorney

 

 

Vice Chairman Walker noted the following short term goals:

 

·        County to try to obtain all grants possible for utilities, education, economic development, etc (example –Piedmont Partnership -$15 million for training)

·        Recreation – bring back to be a county department – to provide more recreational activities for the youth of the county

·        Infrastructure other than water and sewer

 

The Board discussed the current recreational activities currently provided by the

 

YMCA, the work being provided by volunteers in the County operating recreational

 

programs, recreational opportunities for family activities, allocation funded each year by the

 

County for recreation, and the recreational advisory committee set up by the County.

 

Commissioner Carroll noted the following short-term goals:

 

·        Hire a County Manager

·        Appoint a committee to study the District Committee

 

The Board discussed the following issues regarding appointing a committee

 

to study the District Committee:

 

·        Structure the committee with open-minded individuals who go out and receive input from the citizens of Stokes County and return to the Board with a recommendation

·        Need for an objective committee

·        Need for an objective study

·        Need to place this item on the action agenda for the next meeting for further discussion and planning to authorize the appointment of a committee

·        Possible selection criteria

o       Referrals from the executive committees of the Republican and Democrat Parties

o       Possible seven member Board

o       One from each quadrant of the County

o       3 at large members

o       Possibly one member from each township of the county -9 members

o       Referral from Board members

o       Members from the Democrat, Republican, and Unaffiliated Parties

o       No stacking of the appointments

·        Must truly be objective to give the citizens information about the District System

·        Possible Town Hall Meetings

·        Committee members must be educated regarding their purpose of serving on the committee

·        Time needed to complete the study

·        Possible Public Hearings at each precinct

·        Need for advertisements to inform the citizens of the purpose of the committee, purpose of the meetings, the time and place of the meetings, etc.

·        Major objective of the committee is to provide the Board with information regarding whether the citizens in Stokes County want a District System

·        Number of members to be appointed to the Committee

·        Whether to include the Board of Education in the study

·        Need for a poll survey instead of a committee study

·        Need to place the item on the upcoming action agenda to start the process

o       Action to establish a committee to study a District System

o       Number of appointees- design of the committee, 5, 7, or 9, etc.

o       Selection of the committee

o       Time frame for the study

o       Education of the committee

o       Consider a poll survey

 

            Chairman Inman requested Board members to take all the goals listed during the

 

planning sessions and prioritize them by short term and long term goals by the next planning

 

session.

 

 

 

 

 

Agenda Structure

 

            Vice Chairman Walker requested that the Board discuss the agenda structure.

 

Vice Chairman Walker expressed concerns with the changes recently made to

 

Agenda- Consent Agenda, Information Agenda, Discussion Agenda, and Action Agenda.

 

The Board discussed the following recent changes made to the agenda:

 

·        The purpose of the Discussion Agenda which will allow members to have time before having to vote on the item

·        Eliminates surprises to the agenda

·        The opportunity to add or delete items from the agenda during the approval of the agenda

·        The opportunity to move items on the Consent Agenda to the Discussion or Action Agenda if needed

·        The opportunity to move items on the Discussion Agenda to the Action Agenda if needed

·        Elimination of seconding the motion

·        Extra time involved placing the item on more than one agenda

 

The Board unanimously agreed to continue with the current agenda format.

 

CLOSED SESSION

 

            Chairman Inman entertained a motion to enter into closed session for the following:

 

·        To consider the initial employment or appointment of an individual to any office or position, other than a vacancy in the Board of County Commissioners or any other public body, or to consider the qualifications, competence, performance, character, and fitness of any public officer or employee, other than a member of the Board of Commissioners or of some other public body pursuant to G.S. 143-318.11(6)

 

Commissioner Lankford moved to enter into closed session for the following:

 

·        To consider the initial employment or appointment of an individual to any office or position, other than a vacancy in the Board of County Commissioners or any other public body, or to consider the qualifications, competence, performance, character, and fitness of any public officer or employee, other than a member of the Board of Commissioners or of some other public body pursuant to G.S. 143-318.11(6)

 

Vice Chairman Walker seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

 

 

The Board returned to the regular meeting of February 19, 2007.

            There being no further business to come before the Board, Chairman Inman

 

entertained a motion to adjourn the meeting.

 

Commissioner Smith moved to adjourn the meeting.  Commissioner Lankford

 

seconded and the motion was unanimous.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________                                  _____________________________

Darlene M. Bullins                                                    J. Leon Inman

Clerk to the Board                                                  Chairman