Board of County Commissioners

Gadsden County, Florida




Regular Public Meeting

January 3, 2012

6:00 p.m.


Present:               Sherrie Taylor, District 5, Chair

                                Gene Morgan, District 3, Vice-Chair

                                Eugene Lamb, District 1

                                Doug Croley, District 2

                                Brenda Holt, District 4

                                Debra Minnis, County Attorney

                                Arthur Lawson, Interim County Administrator

                                Nicholas Thomas, Clerk

                                Beryl H. Wood, Deputy Clerk



**Note: These are not the official minutes; they will be available on the web at a later date.


   Invocation, Pledge of Allegiance and Roll Call


Chair Taylor called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. then led in the invocation, pledge of allegiance to the U.S. flag.   The roll was called by the deputy clerk and noted above for the record.



   Amendments (None) and Approval of Agenda – Motion to Approve Agenda: Croley/Morgan 5-0 Motion Carries


Awards, Presentations and Appearances


Clerk of Courts - None


1.            Presentation of County Finance and County Clerk Issues

                (Nicholas Thomas, Clerk of the Courts)







2.            Approval of Minutes – August 23, 2011 – Special Joint Meeting

             Attachment - Item_2 (minutes)


3.            Ratification of Approval to Pay County Bills –


4.              Pulled for discussion

Approval of Agreement with the Management Experts, LLC to Provide Emergency Management Training (Morris Young, Sheriff/Shawn Wood, Emergency Management Director) – Attachment -Item_4



Commissioner Croley pulled item 4. He noted that this item should be deferred. He asked for a copy of the Bradford County Competitive Selection. He noted that they have never seen copy of Bradford Copy Competitive Selection. He asked that it be deferred to the next meeting.


Commissioner Taylor concurred with staff having as much info as possible.


Mr. Lawson stated that this is the same vendor that they have used in the past. He said that he could a copy of the Bradford County Competitive Selection.


Commissioner Lamb commented that he hadn’t heard complaints against challenging the bid.


TaShonda Whaley, Representative of the Gadsden County Sheriff’s Office stated  they actually provided the contract to the Attorney and she noted they piggybacked only once, which was last year.


Commissioner Morgan asked where they under timelines. It if it is an issue if we can review and have it approved at the next scheduled meeting.


Ms. Whaley stated that she is under a timeline and that the grant ends June 30, 2012.


Commissioner Croley said that he would withdraw motion to have further discussion from Staff and Sheriff’s Department, if you can provide Bradford County Competitive Selection for  review to the County Attorney and County Administrator


Minnis asked for a point of clarification.  I have not seen bid documents


Commissioner Holt stated that she was in favor of viewing documents ahead of time.


Chair Taylor only concern is that their purchasing policy may be different, I don’t want it held up because purchasing policies are different. There bid might not line up.



Mr. Lawson commented that most have to meet state statue.


Discussion occurred among the Board.


Commissioner Lamb noted that material is given to each Board member in a timely fashion and all questions are concerned should be worked out prior to the meeting.


Croley/Morgan 4-1(Lamb): Motion to allow Approval of Agreement with The Management Experts, LLC to Provide Emergency Management Training to be approved based on the contingency that the Bradford County competitive selection is provided to the Attorney and Manager for review by the Sheriff’s Office by way of bid package and purchasing policy.



5.              Pulled for discussion

 Approval and Signature for Satisfaction of Special Assessment Lien(s) State Housing Initiative Partnership (SHIP) Program and BOCC (ER) Emergency Repair Program(Clyde Collins, Building Official and Phyllis Moore, SHIP Administrator)

Attachment - Item_5.pdf


Commissioner Croley asked what determination was made on the Emergency Repair Program. Is this the State Program.


Mrs. Moore commented that we have Ship Dollars it’s just for satisfaction of the ones complete.


Commissioner Croley inquired about two and five year liens. He asked for copy of what is considered emergency repairs.



Motion for approval: Croley /Holt 5-0


6.              Pulled for discussion


Approval of Bid Award to Southern Triad Construction, LLC, for the Greensboro Train Depot Restoration Project(Charles Chapman, Public Works Director/ Robert Presnell, Administrative Coordinator) – Attachment - Item_6


Chair Taylor commented that she pulled this item, she asked about keeping dollars in our County leaning toward local businesses.


 Mr. Lawson said the difference basically is the bid amount; we were following what our policy dictates.


Chair Taylor consideration for local business, what kind of leverage could this Board look at, if we choose not .


Minnis my concern is that if they have followed policy, she suggested that they not override bid, but look at amending the policy for future references.


Chair Taylor said that it should be some room for Commissioners should have leverage. She commented that bids do get reverse.


Minnis if that particular information was not in the Bid Process, there could be some problems. Better option look at bid process.


Commissioner Holt said that she brought this up in favor of local preference. We are not looking at providing jobs for our residents. We can’t argue if we don’t have a policy in place. She asked for away to look at item 5 and 6. She asked for ordinance if it’s legal.


Commissioner Morgan commented that directions should be. He said that this is a policy; the fact is the Board can make final decision, based on local representation we award to local bidder.


Minnis if Board decides to go with a different bidder.  She said it could be an arbitrary decision

I need to make a correction: it puts you in a bid protest situation.


Mr. Presnell it is a grant from the Federal Highway. One of the specific requirements is that is competitive bid.  He said to cure the problem; you would have to amend the procurement policy.


Chair Taylor not in favor of sending money to Bainbridge, but I will not bulk system.



Commissioner Croley money came through CRTPA. He said what Attorney and Presnell stated is correct about Federal Dollars.



Motion to approve: Holt/Lamb 4-1 (Chair Taylor voted against the motion)



7.              Pulled for discussion

Approval of Bid and Contract between CSI Contracting, Inc. and Gadsden County Board of County Commissioners for the Renovation of the Tax Collector’s Office(Clyde Collins, Building Official) – Attachment - Item_7_


Commissioner Holt commented that she pulled item 7 based on local preference should be given. We are going to have to do something to get people working.


Motion for approval: Holt/ Lamb 5-0


Point of Clarification: Mr. Lawson: It is a mandate of this Board that we amend the Procurement Policy to put in a local preference.


Chair Taylor not at this time it will be addressed under Commissioner Items, due to it not being properly place on the agenda.


Items Pulled for Discussion


   Citizens Requesting to be Heard on Non-Agenda Items (3 minute limit)


Emily Rowan –Item # 6 representing members on the West Gadsden Historical Society. She said they have long anticipated the renovation of the Greensboro Train Depot Restoration Project. She said that they were upset that it was not bid locally. She expressed that they do not want to miss out on a ½ million dollars. She thanked the Board for approval, so they could move forward.


Public Hearings



Public Hearing – Approval of Resolution Number 2012-001 and Budget Amendments to               the Fiscal Year 2011/2012 Budget to Appropriate Funds for Jail Maintenance and Lamb Park

(Connie McLendon, Finance Director and Jeff Price, Senior Management and Budget Analyst)

Attachments - Item_8


Mr. Price commented that this agenda item seeks the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) approval of resolution #2012-001 and budget amendments to the FY 2011/12 budget to appropriate funds for jail maintenance and Lamb Park. He said that it is requested that the funds be appropriated from fund 301 (Capital Project – General Fund) to provide funding to complete various infrastructure projects at the County Jail. Also it is requested that funds be appropriated from fund 344 (Capital Project – Parks Fund) to provide funding to complete the infrastructure construction and installation of equipment ant Lamb Park. He noted that the $125,000 is the cost of an installed chiller for the County Jail that overlapped fiscal years. The $250,000 is to appropriate into FY12 for various projects at the County Jail. The $45,000 is the remaining funds in FY11 that is needed to complete Lamb Park.



Chair Taylor reminded public about the public hearing process and she asked for comments and there was none.


Commissioner Croley my concern is that the items are not split. On the park funding, I have supported, however the cost of it is continuing going up. He discussed other concerns. How much Public Works efforts have gone in. How much more will it take to complete park. We don’t have the money and this is the most money that we have ever spent on a park. My reservation is the amount of money is being spending.


Commissioner Holt inquired how much money was received federally. She agreed with Commissioner Croley, but stated the project needs to be completed. She noted that Friendship Park is next on the list.


Croley – I don’t have a problem with going ahead with Budget Amendment. The Board needs to know what they are spending. Bring back report.


Robert Presnell -99% complete, as of Dec. 19, 2011 $119,000 (Lamb Park)




9.              Public Hearing – Approval of Resolution Number 2012-002 and Budget Amendments to the Fiscal Year 2011/2012 Budget to Appropriate Funds for Roof on the Records Center (Connie McLendon, Finance Director and Jeff Price, Senior Management and Budget Analyst)  - Attachment - Item_9


Mr. Price commented that approval of payroll re-class budget amendments and resolution 2012-003 for Fiscal Year 2011/12. He said this agenda items seeks the Board approval of the noted resolutions to appropriate funds for the roof on the Records Center. He said it is requested that funds be appropriated from fund 005- Court Facilities Fund to provide funding to complete the roof replacement and repair for the Record Center. He said the amount budget is $85,500 for FY for the roof replacement and repair for the Record Center that overlapped fiscal years.


Chair Taylor asked for comment.



(Commissioner Morgan was not present at this vote)



Public Hearing – Approval of Payroll Re-class Budget Amendments and Resolution 2012-003 for Fiscal Year 2011/2012 (Connie McLendon, Finance Director and Jeff Price, Senior Management and Budget Analyst) – Attachments - Item_10


Mr. Price stated this agenda item seeks approval of Resolution 2012-003 and authorization for the County Administrator and the Finance Director in the Clerk’s Office to complete and the the attached budget amendments for the Fiscal Year 2012 budget.  He noted that during the budget process several staff members were coded into new departments and later it was determined that they should have been in other departments and other funds. This process must be implemented by the Board via the corresponding budget amendments in accordance with the Florida Statues. The budget amendments will transfer funds and set up the staff salaries and benefits in the correct department. No fiscal change to the entire budget for FY 11/12.


Chair Taylor asked for public comment and there was none.


Commissioner Croley it deals with Robert Presnell. He asked Mrs. Minnis if this action contrast


Attorney Minnis - I can’t answer that question at this point and time.


Mr. Lawson - Mr. Presnell was initially in the County Administrator budget. He suggested that the money should be placed in the proper place where he actually serves.


Commissioner Holt commented that the dispute is where he will be paid.  We need to pay out of appropriate account.


Chair Taylor agreed with Commissioner Holt that we have transparency.


Commissioner Lamb said that the Administrator should be allowed to do his job.


Chair Taylor said that each person is entitled to their own opinion.


Mr. Price said that 1206 and 1217 are incorrect. General Fund and Revenue, should be under Expense Account.


Commissioner Croley said this is not your money, why and how much. This is why I ask questions.  If it is incorrect how can we take a motion on it?


Chair Taylor stated there should be a motion to table to first meeting in February.


Commissioner Holt you need to look at employees. What is it that you need to do, it’s a strange time.  


Motion: Croley/Morgan to have item deferred – 4-1 (Commissioner Lamb cast the lone vote)




Public Hearing – Approval of Resolution Number 2012-004 and Budget Amendments to               Record SunTrust Financing of Renovations to the Property Appraiser/Tax Collector Building

(Connie McLendon, Finance Director and Jeff Price, Senior Management and Budget Analyst)

Attachments - Item_11


Mr. Price asked for approval of Resolution Number 2012-004 and Budget Amendments to record SunTrust Financing of Renovations to the Property Appraiser/Tax Collector Building.

He said at the at the August 22, 2011 workshop, the Board authorized staff to solicit a request for proposal (RFP) for the financing of renovations to the Property Appraiser/Tax Collector building. At the October 4, 20011 meeting, the SunTrust Financing documents were presented and approved the selection of SunTrust Equipment Finance and Leasing Corp. of Towson, Md.

He added that at the December 20, 2011 meeting, the SunTrust Financing documents were presented and approved by the Board.


Chair Taylor asked for Public Comment.


Motion for approval: Lamb/Holt


Comment: Commissioner Morgan appreciated Mr. Price. He said on this particular item just because we have that amount allocated does not mean we have to spend that amount. He stated that we should wisely spend.


Commissioner Croley inquired from Clerk Thomas.


   Clerk Thomas to receive the monies up to $400,000. The one thing you might have to do is come back and set up the Debt Service Account.


Chair Taylor clarification will be set up in a separate account. $109,000 already there that has been turned in by the Property Appraiser.


Commissioner Holt echoed Clerk’s Thomas comments. She asked to see if the Contractor has hired local people. She discussed Federal money opportunities.


Commissioner Lamb commented that Mr. Collins has worked closely on this project.


Mr. Collins discussed local contractors. He said that he talked to them and they are using local companies.


Motion for Approval: Lamb/ Holt 5-0 Motion Carries



12.            Public Hearing – Adoption of the Bostick Road Future Land Use Map Amendment

                (Anthony Matheny, Planning and Community Development Director)

              Attachments - Item_12




Mr. Matheny addressed the Board.

Motion for Approval: Croley/Holt 4-0 (Lamb was not present for vote)



 Public Hearing – Adoption of Ordinance Number _ to Implement the Provisions of Section 286.0115, Florida Statutes, Relating to Ex Parte Communications with Local Public Officials Related to Pending Quasi-Judicial Actions

(Deborah Minnis, County Attorney/David Weiss, Assistant County Attorney)

Attachments - Item_13


Mrs. Minnis discussed the Adoption of Ordinance Number.


Chair Taylor asked for public comment. She noted that conversations need to be disclosed on itm


Commissioner Croley said that he had problems with Commissioners. He said with this ordinance in place.


Referenced Page 2 of ordinance – last sentence. ( He asked for clarification)


Mrs. Minnis chapter 12 Ethics Provision – since it’s voluntary, if won’t


 Referenced 3b for clarification.


Mrs. Minnis -This particular section deals with the land use issues. It makes proceeding a little more formal than just have discussion.


Referenced 3c ( Does it apply to Planning and Zoning as well)


Mrs. Minnis upon clarification it does apply. Language is in Statue. It does protect the Commissioner.


Commissioner Croley said it is something to be cleared up to protect Commissioners.


Commissioner Holt made comments concerning Boards, we are requiring people to live under and they know nothing about it. It should be workshop format so the appointees know what they are getting into by accepting to be on Board.


Commissioner Morgan most counties our size do they have this particular Ordinances and how do we enforce.


Atty. Minnis this is the process we will use. Section C-(clarification)


Commissioner Croley we are not supposed to talk with citizens that come before Board.


   Atty. Minnis – to avoid presumption you must disclose.


Discussion occurred among the Board.


Morgan – If we don’t adopt ordinance, do we fail/ or we better served to adopt ordinance.


Minnis – No you are not. It is a voluntary statue. If you do exempts the assumption of prejudice. It gives another layer of defense.


Commissioner Holt if we pass we had better adhere. Workshops


Atty. Minnis replied no timeline.


Chair Taylor – point # 1 does this affect local official and other boards. So we need to have other Boards input before passing. It is consensus that it be tabled. Workshop


Croley/ Holt -Motion for deferred to get communications and bring back report 5-0




Public Hearing - Adoption of Ordinance Number _ to enact and authorize an additional homestead exemption of $25,000 for qualified individuals who are at least 65 years of age

(Deborah Minnis, County Attorney)  Attachment - Item_14



Chair Taylor informed Board of Public Hearing and asked for comments.


Motion for Approval Holt/Lamb 5-0


General Business



Approval to Seek Quotes for Financing Ambulance Purchase(s)

(Tommy Baker, EMS Director) – Attachment - Item_15


Mr. Lawson discussed the approval to seek quotes for financing ambulance purchases.

Mr. Baker addressed the Board and asked the Board to allow them to seek quotes on high mileage vehicles.


Commissioner Croley would it be possible to lease these type vehicles?


Mr. Baker said there is one company, but it’s not really a lease. He said then plan is to remount the box. Leon County gave 3 ambulances, he reminded Board to do thank you letter.


Commissioner Croley asked what do units cost.


 Mr. Baker replied $190,000 for ambulances. To remount about is about $85,000. He said that they need to get on rotation plan.


Commissioner Croley spoke in support.


Commissioner Lamb spoke in support.


Commissioner Holt said that if we can get with someone /counties that are already buying, it could be a savings.


Commissioner Morgan discussed total cost of ownership. He suggested one make on the ambulances. Once we know what this will cost it can be budgeted.


Mr. Baker said that they will be back on Agenda in February.


Motion for approval Holt/ Lamb 5-0



Discussion of Tourist Development Council – Terms of Appointments

(Arthur Lawson, Interim County Administrator/Sonya Burns, TDC Coordinator)

Attachment -  Item_16


Mr. Lawson addressed the Board.

Mr. DuBree addressed the Board on the Tourist Development Council. They are now on staggered system. He said traditionally the Council end dates where December 31st. He suggested that they reflect the end of the fiscal year. He suggested end dates July 30th.


Commissioner Croley inquired about By-Laws.


Chair Taylor stated the Strategic Plan had all things in place.


It is part of state statue.


Chair Taylor let’s stay with process.

Commissioner Morgan – how can TDC can be most effective .

Commissioner Holt questioned staggering of Commissioners. I’m interested in getting new ideas for more people in the county.


Mr. DuBree positive news, August- November collected (increases) most bed taxes.


Chair Taylor commented that the intelligence is there among the Board. Let’s move forward with  positive ideas for the County.



   County Administrator


17.          Update on Board Requests

                (Arthur Lawson, Interim County Administrator)               


Copy of letter from Mayor John Mark, City of Tallahassee, Resolution to pass to get Amtrak Train mo


Motion to have agenda item for Amtrak Train Resolution Taylor/ Holt -5-0




County Attorney



C.W. Roberts Agreement to Abate Recycled Asphalt Pavement Crushing/Production Operation and Related Activities(Deborah Minnis, County Attorney) – Attachments - Item_18


Basically the only section he wanted to removed was about penalty section. I’m asking guidance from the Board.


Comments: Commissioner Holt I don’t think it should be


Motion for approval: Holt/Morgan


Question raised by Commissioner Croley – as Atty. for County does this in any way uncomfortable with change.


Commissioner Holt why did we need  the agreement.


Atty. Minnis -We have been trying to get contract signed since 2010. Mr. Roberts has not objected


Commissioner Holt withdrew the motion.


Motion for approval Taylor/Croley 4-1 (Commissioner Holt voted opposed the motion)



Update on Various Legal Issues (Deborah Minnis, County Attorney)


Election Cost – Slot Referendum


Atty. Minnis said that the Supervisor said he has funds for a full election in Jan. She said she would not be short of funds. We have an issue on ballot; she already has to spend money.


Commissioner Croley asked why Mrs. Knight created budget with two full elections.


Commissioner Morgan stated that they would reimburse the county if there are added expenses.


Atty. Minnis it not an issue with pages, originally it was a Republican Election, but know we have Referendum.


Commissioner Holt commented that once you decided on abatement, we are responsible for what’s on ballot.


Chair Taylor stated that the organization of the Horse Track, I do recall them saying that in a public meeting they would compensate if needed.

We rule by the majority vote:


Motion Taylor/ Croley 5-0 for to have Administrator talk to about paying for expenses related to (word additional) find out what language says, do research to take a look at.




It will have to be brought back


Morgan – Are there any additional costs


Discussion Items by Commissioners      



                   Commissioner Lamb, District 1 – Resurfacing Roads in the Lake Yvette Area

                 Addressed Hearing around the Dias.


                   Commissioner Croley, District 2 – Report and Discussion on Pertaining to

                     Commission District Two and Gadsden County

·         How many of our citizens are participating in Waste Collections.

Motion for agenda and review: Croley/Morgan 5-0

·         What business in unincorporated areas

Motion: For County Administrator to look at setting up business license for unincorporated areas of the County.  (For discussion only)

Croley/ Morgan 5-0


  Commissioner Holt, District 4 – County Procurement Process to be brought back for

                     Agenda item .

                Motion to have staff bring back for discussion Holt/ Croley 5-0

  Disclosure for other Boards – Has already been handled care of. Commissioner Holt discussed urgency. Have Administrator give names of members on different Boards.


Mr. Lawson stated they are cleaning up Boards at this moment


   Commissioner Morgan, Vice Chairman, District 3 – Happy New Year

 Lobbying Process Financial Commitment for Defending Florida State Hospital

Motion dies for lack of second

·         Job Performance during public meetings.


·         Rotate order in which Comments are made by Commissioners.

Chair Taylor no problem with revision.


   Commissioner Taylor, Chairperson, District 5 –I think Board needs a retreat.



Motion to Adjourn          @ 9:05pm           


Receipt and File


January Meeting(s)


                - January 17, 2012, Regular Meeting, 9:00 a.m.