Conecuh County Commission Meeting 30 Dec 2019

Call to order by Chairman Riley at 10 AM. Mr. Tim Covin gave the opening prayer followed by the pledge of allegiance.


Roll call showed all members present. The agenda was amended to allow Mr. Jerome Boykin an opportunity to address the commission and approved as such. The previous minutes were accepted as read.


Payroll/personnel report:

1. There were no new hires however there was one separation from the jail. There were 12 total hours of overtime to be approved, 4 from the jail and 8 from the engineering department. This report was approved by unanimous vote.

2. A discussion on how, when and who to charge for vehicle usage was next. The commissioners, administrator, payroll/personnel clerk and county engineer were all involved. Final outcome was to table this discussion until the next work session.


Claims:

1. There were no over the limit claims for either fund. The current claims were approved, by unanimous vote, for payment as submitted.


Mr. Jerome Boykin:

1. Mr. Boykin addressed the commission body about what he perceives as unnecessary expenses, bad decisions and a lack of any accountability.

He spoke of the bridge on County Road 63 and it being destroyed by a county worker driving a vehicle that violated the load rating for the bridge. This escapade cost the county $450,000.00. Mr. Boykin pointed out that had that $450,000.00 been available for paving dirt roads it would have been put too much better use. He also noted no one has yet been held accountable for this mess up.

Mr. Boykin talked of the decision to pave a road with only one occupied house on it when another road in the same district with about 30 houses on it has begged for more than 10 years to get paved.

Mr. Boykin made mention of the recent “dirt” situations, one with dirt being hauled to an individual and a road built on their property with it and with the fact that load accountability for dirt does not match. There is supposed to be a double documentation on dirt loads so the county will know how much to pay the land owner. A recent check of loads moved show a discrepancy of 58 loads between the records.

Mr. Boykin emphasized the fact that as of yet, no one has been held accountable for these problems.


Economic Director:

1. Mr. Jeff Taylor, Conecuh Economic Developer gave a report on the recent purchase of the Louisiana Pacific property.

Mr. Taylor laid out an outline for doing a cleanup of the new property. He stated that certain equipment needed to be rented to do this debris, jungle removing task. He said after getting the property presentable a marketing plan for usage would be established.

Commissioner Millender noted that backhoes were part of the cleanup equipment needed. He suggested using the county backhoes to cover this work with each district taking a turn helping. This was considered a good suggestion along with looking hard at other services the county can perform.

County Engineer Foshee was asked what his time estimate was on getting the area cleaned up. Mr. Foshee stated he thought everything could be accomplished within a month.

There will be signs with a lot of show and tell information placed at the property, i.e., distance to the interstate, Hwy. 31, Hwy. 84, the airport, all this along with contact numbers for interested clientele

County Engineer:

1. Mr. Foshee had nothing to address.


County Administrator:

1. Ms. Stephanie Brown questioned the commissioners as to how to handle the invoices from Dr. Nobles, Evergreen Veterinary Clinic, dealing with the continued training for Ms. Windham at the Animal Shelter. The commission directed the bills be paid.

2. Ms. Brown reminded the commissioners of Judge Brock’s upcoming retirement.

3. Ms. Brown also reminded the commissioner of the upcoming District Meeting.


County Attorney:

1. Mr. Bishop spoke of potential impending changes with the DHR building lease. Due to a change in insurance coverage the contract dealing with DHR building lease is being considered for a change. Currently the contract runs from the fiscal year dates of 1 Oct-30 Sep. A change has been proposed to move that date to coincide with calendar dates, 1 Jan-31 Dec.

After discussion the commission deemed the fiscal year dates to be better suited for the county to deal with. Mr. Bishop will present this to DHR.

2. Mr. Bishop advised he had looked into the Mediacom situation whereby Mediacom pays for pole usage. Mr. Bishop noted the payment for these pole rentals is less than a pittance and not really worth pursuing.

3. Mr. Bishop is in receipt of the paperwork dealing with title transfer of the Louisiana Pacific purchase. He will take action as necessary.

4. Mr. Bishop is also in receipt of a document from Regions Bank dealing with loan arrangements for the Lyeffion Water Authority. No action is really needed on this.


Commissioners Comments and Announcements:

1. District 2 Commissioner Riley requested permission to advertise for a replacement worker for his district. Approved.

2. The request of Mr. Coving during the work session was discussed. Commissioner Millender suggested the chairman get with the city and discuss what they are doing to help with building this stage and address it next meeting.

3. Revenue Commissioner Bell’s request for window coverings was approved to put blinds in place. Even though the blinds are a little more expensive it will keep a uniformed look though out the courthouse.


News Media:

1. I addressed the commission body on several issues dealing with the County Handbook that we paid $26,000.00 to have done and was approved October 2018 by unanimous vote of every commissioner currently sitting on the board.

I reminded the commissioners that I had asked about employee evaluation several months back and was told the county had a system whereby to do these evals. Since that time I’ve discovered evals are not being done. That goes hand in hand with what Mr. Boykin noted earlier, no accountability for employees or their actions

I asked who could make changes to the Handbook and was told it could be done only by commissioners and no one commissioner could make any change, it had to be a group decision.

I noted that there were two groups of offenses, group one and group two. Group two are the more serious offenses and carry with them a recommendation of anyone found guilty of them be dismissed unless there are mitigating circumstances. Just like the evals, no one gets held accountable for any actions.

I further asked at what time do violations of this handbook become a reason for an ethics complaint.

I asked the commissioners when it does it become their responsibility to stand up and defend the residents of this county from fraud, waste and abuse. These very residents that elected them to office. I admonished them that by taking no action it means they are part of the problem, not a part of the solution.

I also questioned Commissioner Campbell if any action had been taken on one of his employees doing unauthorized hauling of dirt. Mr. Campbell advised me that action had been taken.


Executive Session:

1. A motion to go into executive session for a variety of reasons was offered and passed by unanimous voice vote.

2. Executive session 10:55 AM

3. Return to regular session 11:14



Motion to adjourn approved at 11:15