Penobscot County Commissioners' Meeting from June 25, 2019
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Penobscot County Commissioners’ Meeting Minutes June 25, 2019 2244
9:00 AM Commissioners Peter Baldacci and Laura Sanborn 70°
Commissioner Andre Cushing (9:15 AM)
UT Update –
Barbara Veilleux reported they had a very positive meeting with Springfield town officials and the fire chief in regards to fire coverage for Prentiss. The next step will be meeting with Springfield, Mattawamkeag and Kingman Fire Departments.That will take place July 13th. We will be discussing coverage, prices as well as the use of Kingman’s equipment and stations. Barb received a fax from Kingman saying they will not be responding to any more incidents. Their insurance expires at the end of July. Barbara wants to make sure that the buildings have insurance coverage and depending on what we do we the fire trucks they need insurance coverage too.
Craig Hill reports that Mt. Chase Fire has already had two occasions to use the rapid response vehicle they purchased with TIF funds. Craig is pleased that the community has a great resource.
George Buswell Road Agent is on vacation for a few days this week.
We will be bidding the paving work in Greenfield as soon as Joey Reinzo completes the shoulder work on Crocker Turn Road.
Commissioner Sanborn made a motion to go out to bid for snow plow removal for Argyle three year contract, with two additional years. Commissioner Baldacci seconded the motion. Motion passed 2-0.
Sheriff’s Update –
Sheriff reported that today’s jail population is 169 (125 males, 44 females) with 46 boarded out to other county jails. There is one county swap, no federal marshals and 64 in Maine Pre-Trial Services. In the last 72 hours we had 46 new arrests and 41 of those bailed out. (89%)
Sheriff reports that there was a great meeting in Augusta with DOC, Office of Substance Abuse and the Opiate Council on Medical Assisted Treatment protocols. It was quite evident that they are very pleased that we are trying to expand and lead the charge with this programming.
Sheriff met with the courts and DHHS in regards to Intensive Case Managers.Andy Davis has been promoted to regional supervisor. DHHS are looking for a second case manager.
Sheriff had another discussion with the courts on video arraignment. The pros are strong because of having the DA’s, Attorney’s, and Maine Pre-Trial all in the same room to work things out in order to speed things along. The downfall is the court building is not suitable to handle the amount of people we have for arraignments. We are going to continue to try and work things out.
Sheriff reports he is very encouraged with progress being made towards a day reporting 1st and 2nd offender program. He believes using the furlough process may assist in moving inmates quicker. The furlough process can release an inmate in regards to rehabilitation. I think that if we do a day reporting program that is more therapeutic. Classes can benefit the inmate once outside the system. We need to focus on low risk-no risk, and running the program once a month. We would need a full time person to be on staff to organize and produce the program. Sheriff is encouraged and excited that we may be able to set this plan in motion.
Commissioner Sanborn made a motion to increase part-time correction officers pay from $12 to $14.50 an hour to start, then $15.50 an hour after one year. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Motion approved 3-0. Commissioner Baldacci stated this will be effective for the start of the next pay period.
Sheriff met with Orrington officials last night to discuss a contract and their budget. Orrington approved a contract solely with the Sheriff’s Office for Law Enforcement services. There was a good turnout with supportive community members and the council. It was decided to contract three town deputies.Plan start is August 1. The Sheriff’s Office will look at Town of Orrington’s capital equipment to see if there is something that can be purchased from the Town. The Sheriff plans to assign one deputy per crew for morning, evening and overnights. We will add into the contract a small amount of money to provide backfills for sick/vacation days, special events taking place in the community.
We are finishing up on interviews for the final floater deputy position.
The Town of Clifton has contracted $7,000 for part time supplemental law enforcement. We will assign deputies to the town four hours at a time during busier times.This will take a tremendous load off the regular zone deputy.
PRCC Update –
Chris Lavoie stated the Radio consultant visited eight additional tower sites to survey the equipment and the sites themselves. It was very beneficial for both Josh and I to get out and see those areas.We will report the results when they come in.
Chris followed up on the cell phone application “I Am Responding”.This program is a long term back-up that will benefit all communities in the event the radio system goes down.Chris has communicated with the salesman and was told that he can start setting up accounts immediately once approved. The salesman will provide a two to three month trial.The first bill will come September/October. We pay yearly then going forward. “I Am Responding” will provide training for the agencies not yet trained on this program.
Commissioner Cushing moved to approve purchasing the “I Am Responding” program.Monies will come out of PRCC Capital account. Commissioner Sanborn seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0.
Deeds Update –
Register Susan Bulay reported on legislation reducing the use of Mylar. This bill was passed in both houses and placed on the special appropriations table.It was taken off the special appropriations table on the last day of the session. Governor Mills has not acted on it yet. It had a fiscal note, not certain why since it will save money.
Susan needs to out to bid this year on the computer services update. Susan has updated her RFP. Commissioner Sanborn motioned for Registry of Deeds to go out to bid for a five year computer services. Commissioner Cushing seconded it. Motion passed 3-0.
HR Update –
Erika Honey, HR director thanked members of the Safety Committee for their hard work in coordinating last week’s Health Fair. Erika thanked the facilities department and George Buswell for their help setting up, as well as Dick Hansen and Cigna for their sponsoring this fair. Erika reported it was well received by County Employees.
Erika requested consolidation of Cigna Voluntary self-administered plans. (Short-term and Long-term disability, Life and Disability Coverage) These benefits are paid for entirely by the employee, with no contribution from the County. Currently there are four classifications. Erika is requesting to streamline to two. Commissioner Sanborn moved to approve consolidation of Cigna Voluntary Self-Administered benefit plans as requested. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0.
Erika will be attending a workshop at Rudman and Winchell to go over new legislations that may pertain to employment. Erika will report her findings at next week’s meeting.
EMA Update –
Brad Nuding thanked the Commissioners for their support in allowing him to finish his certification in executive leadership at Harvard.
Michelle Labree reported that they have offered Scott Luciano the open LEPC position with a July 1 start date.He has accepted.
Administration Update –
Commissioner Baldacci opened three “Best and Final” bids for a 250 +/- bed jail facility.
Commissioner Sanborn made a motion to take these bids under advisement. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Motion approved 3-0.
As a reminder the State Workforce Board is having their special meeting to vote on the training policy in Augusta this Friday. Commissioner Cushing will be at that meeting and will vote to repeal.
Bill and former Treasurer Dan Tremble were recognized last Tuesday for their service to Penquis at the Annual Dinner.
Judy Alexander has accepted to serve Penquis Steering and Governance Committee’s.
Bill is trying to meet with Bangor code enforcement and Cap Ayer to see if anything can be done at the old Y.
Bill’s group (MACCAM) is meeting in Augusta Friday.
The Wellness Fair was a big hit with almost double the employees attending.
Elected officials in New England have been invited to the White House July 16th. Commissioner Baldacci stated that this is event is not funded by the County. Commissioner Cushing is attending and financing this trip.
Judy Alexander will be attending a meeting Wednesday with Vicki Rusbult, EMDC regarding the Hermon Multi-Modal Terminal grant proposal.
Payroll Change Notices signed for:Scott Luciano, James L. Nicholas, Kelley Fennelly – Hired; Benjamen Brown, Suzanne Labun, Jessica Luna and Jonathan Tenney – Payroll Change Notices; Alexis Smith and Barb Veilleux – Comp time.
Payroll Warrant to be approved for:$ 225,592.57
Accounts Payable Warrant to be approved for: $ 295,540.77
UT A/P Warrant to be approved for: $85,428.29
UT TIF Warrant to be approved for: -NONE-
Public Comment –
Commissioner Baldacci welcomed the Honorable State Legislator Joseph Perry and his son who were in attendance today.
Larry Dansinger is grateful that the Commissioners are looking at a lower bed count for the new jail building. Larry is encouraged with the jail diversions that the Sheriff is working on and hopeful that the trend will continue. Larry provided the Sheriff with a list of categories which he feels that this may be helpful. Larry provided copies of State legislation that was passed or carried over on bail reform issues.
Commissioner Baldacci explained why the bed count was lowered from 300 to 250.The significant cost of 300 beds is a major factor for our taxpayers. Second there is concern about the proposed location of the jail with the complexity to develop where the jail would be. The Commissioners wanted the bidders to look at a different site which could be millions of dollars savings. The Commissioners also looked at other factors such as the long term benefit of a new facility versus trying to piece together the old jail and trends at keeping people out of jail.We can always expand if we are wrong. It is not necessary to overbuild. The Commissioners heavily weighed to what is being presenting.
Commissioner Cushing injected we are looking for training, support and medical services to be co-located.There will also be beds in the old jail that can be used for overflow for inmates if necessary.
Doug Dunbar echoed what Larry Dansinger said about greater diversion efforts and hope for a smaller size jail.
Executive Session---Commissioner Sanborn made a motion to go into Executive Session at 11:00 a.m., under 1 M.R.S.A. § 405 (6) (E) Legal Matter. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Vote to approve 3-0. Present were: Bill Collins, John Hiatt, Sheriff Morton, and Erika Honey. Session ended at 11:19 a.m. NO votes taken.
Executive Session---Commissioner Cushing made a motion to go into Executive Session at 11:20 p.m., under 1 M.R.S.A. § 405 (6) (D) Contract Matter. Commissioner Sanborn seconded the motion. Vote to approve 3-0. Present were: Bill Collins, Judy Alexander, John Hiatt, Sheriff Morton, and Lt. Hotaling, Session ended at 11:47 p.m. NO votes taken.
Executive Session---Commissioner Cushing made a motion to go into Executive Session at 11:50 a.m., under 1 M.R.S.A. § 405 (6) (A) Personnel Matter. Commissioner Sanborn seconded the motion. Vote to approve 3-0. Present were: Bill Collins and Erika Honey. Session ended at 12:15 p.m. NO votes taken.
Commissioner Sanborn moved to adjourn the meeting at 12:16 p.m. with no further business on the agenda. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Moved to approve passed 3-0
Administrator, Bill Collins
Peter K. Baldacci, Chairman
Laura J. Sanborn, Commissioner
Andre E. Cushing, III, Commissioner