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Penobscot County Commissioners’ Meeting Minutes June 16, 2020 2288
9:00 AM Commissioners Peter Baldacci & Laura Sanborn (In Chambers) 67° Commissioner Andre Cushing present via tele-conference
Roll call was taken at 0900 with all three Commissioners present.
Approval of Minutes –
Commissioner Sanborn made a motion to approve June 9, 2020 meeting minutes. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Vote to approve passed 3-0.
Public Comment – None
UT Update –
• Director Shaw Weeks states that there is no update on the Argyle Broadband Expansion TIF.
Salt Bid Opening –
• Commissioner Baldacci opened up the winter rock salt bids for the Unorganized Territory request. The following four vendors submitted their bids by the deadline.
Southern 3,100 tons Northern 1,760 tons
Cargill No Bid No Bid
Harcros Chemicals, Inc. 63.21 75.50
Morton Salt 51.18 59.54
New England Salt, LLC 50.00 58.00
• Commissioner Sanborn made a motion to take these bids under advisement. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Vote to approve passed 3-0.
PRCC Update –
• Director Chris Lavoie provided the Commissioners copies of letters from Law Enforcement and Fire/EMS agencies in Penobscot County that support the Radio Communication bond that will be voted on next month. The Commissioners will also draft a letter in support of this project.
• Director Lavoie provided the brochure that has been approved by our legal team. Once printed it will be ready for distribution. i.e. coffeeshops, town offices, & end users
• Director Lavoie and Commissioner Sanborn discussed the Penobscot County Democrat virtual meeting of last Saturday. Commissioner Sanborn stated that the group was very impressed. She heard many comments regarding the Director’s knowledge and preparedness of the project; they are in full support of this need. • Director Lavoie is working with Commissioner Cushing to offer the same information to the Penobscot County Republicans in their upcoming monthly meeting.
• Director Lavoie has received quotes from the vendor that will be working on the desks in PRCC. Unfortunately, not all the options were included in the quote. Once available he will share this the Commissioners at next weeks meeting.
• Administrator Collins questioned the Commissioners as to when they plan to hold the Budget Committee meeting and Public Hearings. Commissioner Baldacci would like to include his hearing during the regular scheduled Commissioners meeting. Commissioner Sanborn would like to hold her Hearing on Wednesday, July 24th in front of the RSU 34 Budget Hearing at Old Town High School. Commissioner Cushing will contact Administrator Collin with his date and time. Director Lavoie said that all the media will be invited to each presentation.
HR Update –
• Director Erika Honey reported the following personnel staffing information:
o The hiring processes are moving forward after we placed them on the back burner for a short time during the pandemic.
o The full-time custodian position has been filled. John Neff will be starting June 22. o The part-time custodian position will be re-posted in the next couple of weeks.
o PRCC currently has three vacant positions; they will start interviewing.
o DA’s office had hired a part-time Witness Victim Coordinator in March. The current WVC’s are working remotely, hence we would be unable to train this new employee. In discussion they have agreed they can start at a later date and is understanding as to the delay.
• Director Honey is working with EMA Director Michelle LaBree and reviewing travel guidelines. There has been discussion if essential personnel need to quarantine 14 days after traveling out of State. Every situation is unique.
• There was discussion on how to have testing done for COVID-19; It has been determined if a test it is necessary at the primary physician must order it. The guidelines have are ever changing on how this process will work.
• Director Honey states that she will be applying for the MCCA grant for $3K. The Grant would be used for prevention of the abuse of prescription medications. We’ll be looking into partnering and training for staff here.
• Director Honey is hopeful to restart countywide employee training which has been placed on hold.
Maintenance Update –
• Facilities Director, Cap Ayer reported he will get a quote for winter shoveling and sanding. There are no inmate helpers available to do the work. Bangor Landscaping offers this service. Once a quote is received it will be forwarded to the Commissioners. • Cap reported he is getting pricing for driveway/parking lot asphalt sealing; foundation sealing as well. • There was discussion on the handicapped railings outside the Court Street entrance. There is a limited number of vendors that can do this type of work. Cap has received one quote; this company will remove and replace the railings.
EMA Update –
• Administrator Collins reported on behalf of Director Michelle LaBree and Deputy Brad Nuding:
o EMA continues to monitor the case count as businesses are opening back up. There are 31 cases currently hospitalized in the State of Maine, but there are none in either of the Bangor hospitals.
o Resource requests are down; EMA typically gets 4-6 requests a day. LEPC Part time employee Scott Luciano is starting back with his personal business. We will be losing his support at the end of the month.
o EMA’s new normal is being looked at for alternatives such as training and planning meetings. These now will be conducted via zoom until in person sessions can be held.
o MEMA staff have started to return back to the State offices this week. This was following a recent bout of illness by seven emergency operations center staff for COVID. All tests returned negative.
Sheriff’s Update –
• Administrator Collins reported on behalf of Sheriff Troy Morton who was unable to attend today’s meeting:
o Today’s jail population is 126 in-house, 28 boarded out to other county jails and 110 inmates in Pre-Trial Services.
o As the court starts up, we had the largest group going to court in the last few months. 16 yesterday. o Arrests and being brought to the jail are also on the rise.
o The Board of Visitors live stream their meeting Thursday at 5:30 pm. Commissioners are invited to participate. This meeting will be broadcast on the County Commissioners Facebook page.
o Sheriff is continuing dialog with the Maine Department of Corrections regarding Governor Mills order # 54 which stops the movement of inmates. Penobscot County currently is housing ten DOC inmates. There is growing frustration over this order from Maine State Sheriff’s as it is causing unnecessary negative impacts to county jails. MSA has hired legal council to address this issue.
o Patrol deputies have seen a significant increase of calls for service; with several substantial increase of investigating drug cases over the last two weeks.
o Two deputies will be going out on medical leave which could leave us shorthanded this summer.
o Civil department continues to increase their service.
o Sheriff reports that it has been very encouraging the amount of support his agency has been receiving from the citizens across our County.
Administration Update –
Administrator Bill Collins reported the following:
• LT Babb’s father passed away over the weekend.
• Commissioner Baldacci and Bill Collins participated via ZOOM in MCCA and Risk Pool meetings last Wednesday. Commissioner Steve Gordon from Cumberland County is now MCCA’s new President with Commissioner Mike Cote from York County continuing as the Vice Chair.
• The Wellness Center re-opened yesterday for employees only.
• Director Honey and I will be holding negotiations for each FOP contract.
• All Sheriff’s Offices across the State received a FOIA request from John Pelletier from the Maine legal indigent commission. Our legal council is working with Mr. Pelletier from this group.
• Commissioners should have received a notice of land taking in Hermon that was scanned and sent.
• Commissioners should have received a notice of Brookfield 2019 EAP reprints that was scanned and sent.
• Commissioners should have received a notice of the National Historic Preservation Act that was scanned and sent to UT Director Weeks as well.
• Commissioner Sanborn moved to appoint Judy Alexander to the Penquis Steering Committee. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Vote to approved passed 3-0.
• Administrator Collins presented for signature a criminal forfeiture funds for the Sheriff’s Office.
o State vs Smith in the forfeiture amount of $624.00 Commissioner Sanborn moved to approve receipt of these funds. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Vote to approve passed 3-0. Signed.
• District Attorney Marianne Lynch stepped into to meeting to report the following:
o There will be a meeting on the 18th to discuss the soft re-opening of the courts
o DA Lynch’s staff and ADA’s will still be working as much as possible remotely. DA Lynch wanted to compliment her Staff and employees of Penobscot County for their work that has been able to be done remotely. We have been a model for other counties for the work that has been completed with no rulebook to follow.
• Payroll Change Notices signed for: Jordan Norton and John Neff – Hired full-time; Jennifer Sanford – Resignation
• Commissioner Sanborn made a motion to approve the payroll and accounts payable warrants as presented. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Vote to approve passed 3-0.
• Payroll Warrant to be approved for June 12, 2020: $ 241,425.42
• Accts Payable Warrant to be approved for June 16, 2020: $ 104,486.84
• Unorganized Territory Warrant to be approved: NONE
• Unorganized Territory TIF Warrant to be approved: NONE
Commissioner Sanborn moved to adjourn the meeting for public session at 9:55 a.m. with no further business on the agenda. Commissioner Cushing seconded the motion. Vote to approve passed 3-0
Certified By: Administrator, William Collins
Peter K. Baldacci, Chairman
Laura J. Sanborn, Commissioner
Andre E. Cushing, III, Commissioner