AT A REGULAR MEETING OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY                                                                                                     COMMISSIONERS HELD IN AND FOR GADSDEN                                                                                                                  COUNTY, FLORIDA ON APRIL 2, 2019 AT 6:00 P.M., THE                                                                                                  FOLLOWING PROCEEDING WAS HAD, VIZ:

Board of County Commissioners

Gadsden County, Florida

Regular Public Meeting

April 2, 2019

6:00 p.m.


Present:               Dr. Anthony “Dr. V” Viegbesie, Chair, District 2

                                Sherrie Taylor, Vice Chair, District 5

                                Eric Hinson, District 2

                                Gene Morgan, District 3

                                Brenda Holt, District 4

                                Dee Jackson, County Administrator

                                Nicholas Thomas, Clerk of Court

                                David Weiss, County Attorney

                                Marcella Blocker, Deputy Clerk



  Chair called meeting to order at 6:01 p.m.



  Pull Item 1, 14, 16.  Mr. Weiss said thought would bring Item 20 back for next meeting for clarification.


Taylor out 6:05 p.m.


Morgan/Holt 5-0


Taylor returned 6:05




Proclamation Honoring the Students that Participated in the Talquin Electric Youth Tour



Holt/Morgan 5-0



Scotland Road LAP Project Agreement



Strong Road Sidewalk LAP Agreement



Iron Bridge Road LAP Agreement



Approval of Resolution 2019-009 Urging the United States Congress to Pass Tax Relief for Individuals and Employers Suffering from Hurricane Michael



Approval of Contractual Agreement between CenturyLink and Gadsden County











Ryan Tucker, Purvis, Gray and Company


Mark Payne, James Moore, CPA, 2477 Tim Gamble Place, Tallahassee,








Public Hearing-Approval of the Receipt of Hurricane IRMA Reimbursement

  Jackson introduced above item.


V asked if there was anyone that had any comments and there were none.


Holt/Morgan 5-0



Public Hearing-Budget Amendment for DSNAP Program

  Mrs. Jackson introduced above item.


Chair asked if any comments from citizens-none


Morgan asked if one-time refund-yes.


Holt/Morgan 5-0





Confirmation of the Public Works Director

  Mrs. Jackson introduced the above item.


V said fine young man, on day volunteered to work with Public Works, McNealy was his supervisor-has confidence from what observed on that day.


Holt approval/Hinson second asked if he met all obligations-Jackson said yes 5-0



Confirmation of Assistant County Administrator

  Mrs. Jackson introduced above item.


V said information not on site currently.


Mr. Hall appeared before the board.


Hinson motion to approve to confirm/V 5-0



Bell Road (SCRAP)-Bid Award

  Mrs. Jackson introduced above item.


Weiss said should say contingent upon Peavy & Sons accepting amendment since low bid amount exceeded the construction budget amount.  FDOT said OK to award low bid but need to make sure clear not awarding contract at bid amount.


Justin Ford, Dewberry, said DOT requires before negotiating with contractor to enter into agreement and not first time done this way.


Hinson option 1 with amendment/Morgan 5-0


Holt asked on tabulation of each bidder, Peavy low bidder



Bell Road (SCRAP)-CEI Services

  Jackson introduced above item.


Hinson/Morgan 5-0


Hinson asked when would be working on Glade Road-Justin said not one that in work program to be done now, can evaluate and put in hopper.



Approval to Award RFP 19-02 for County Auditing Services

  Mrs. Jackson introduced above item.


Jackson said County Administrator’s recommendation was reject recommendation of committee to not approve this item.  Common practice is to switch firms every 5 years and staff was concerned that although County pays for audit, Purvis & Gray refuses to show all information and audits seemed to be biased based on the office as County staff have found discrepancies that were not identified in the audit.  When Purvis & Gray was notified, no investigation or changes were made.  This was also confirmed by two other departments.  Seems with length of service they have, departments that have had issues before, they searched more than those that had no issues.  Therefore some will always have clean audit and same departments always have bad audit.


Morgan said he had no problem in taking advice of committee and their recommendations.  To administrator’s comments, never had any problem getting any information regarding audits or any other issues.  Motion to approve option 1.


  Ryan Tucker, Purvis Gray and Company appeared before the Board.  This is first time seeing this, heard there was discrepancy in audit and met with County Administrator and no discrepancies were not brought to his attention. 


Mrs. Jackson asked if not true that she told him that there was pot of money that was not part of audit and no investigation done.  Said she and Jeff Price talked to him and nothing was said.  Sheriff also said they mentioned discrepancies that were not investigated.  County staff requested information from other audits and he refused, even though County paid for audit, was told it was the responsibility of departments to provide information that they would need to create the general budget.


Mr. Tucker said question to them was could they provide general ledger details and transactional information from constitutional officer to the Board and their response was they needed to ask their permission as required by professional standards as courtesy to them.  They felt those type requests should go straight from County staff to Constitutional Officers and not involve auditors.  Do not recall separate part of money being part of conversation and can assure there is no separate part of money what was not being included in the financial statements of the audit.  Furthermore, have not issued the September 30, 2018 report yet and any findings are still being finalized at this point.  There is no report for her to say that have not reported on anything.


Mark Payne, James Moore, CPA appeared before the Board.  Read recommendation from Constitutional Officers and appreciate it.  Report read the committee determined that both proposals met technical qualifications and at end of day will get report from CPA firm, all follow same standards.  Was in Dr. V’s Economics class 32-33 years ago.  Economics of whole situation was, if compare their price to Moore’s price over 3 year period were $86,500 cheaper than Purvis Gray, was lot of money that could go to further staff increases in salaries, help community and county.


Morgan option 1/Taylor said she was on committee and had to call in attorney.  Were discrepancies and when she originally sat down, wanted to see change.  When Board met, they asked questions and got answers.  Taylor made second to motion.


Hinson said he had reservations initially, called them and only problem had, County gave them increase when decreased his Summer Youth program and been fair to him


Holt asked to speak to Ryan.  Over years have not had full audit.  He explained Financial Statement Audit as opposed to Operational Audit.  When comes to funding have no idea what goes on in other departments.  She said she had no problem with rebidding any contract.  Ryan said thought what she was talking about was outside the scope of what they do.  Holt said may be conversation Board needs to have.  She asked length of contract. 


Taylor asked to move the question/ Morgan second 5-0


Ryan Tucker said three years is usual length of contract..


Holt wanted to continue conversation and V said question has been called.


Holt no

Hinson yes

Taylor yes

Morgan yes

V yes




Holt question for auditing firm. 


Taylor said felt should be conversation around the Board.  Don’t want to paint this firm into a corner with the Administrator with her not approving them and it be biased.


V asked that the Administrator work on scheduling workshop



Consideration of Partnering with SynergyNDS to Repair Hurricane Damaged County Buildings through the Florida League of Cities




Barack Obama Boulevard Roundabout-Bid Award

   Jackson introduced the above item.


Taylor stepped out at 6:50 p.m.


V asked if this money was funded by paving money appropriated for that district-yes.


Holt motion to approve/V 4-0



Approval of the County Social Media Policy Number 19-01




FAMU Student Assistance for the Stevens School Expansion Project

  Jackson introduced above item. 


Taylor returned at 6:53.


Taylor said not in agreement with this because people have already met and came up with design as to what they wanted to do and students have come up with something totally different.  Should have been movement on that building 5-7 months ago and nothing have happened.


Morgan asked if citizen advisory committee aware of this-no.  Dee said existing structure, community voted on what they wanted on existing structure, FAMU students will design on empty lot.  Morgan asked if could meet with advisory committee and get their feed-back.


Holt said she had god point and she mentioned that to ones that called her.  Other thing was, Sheriff said if building could be brought up to hurricane standards.


V said heard no discrepancies or disagreement on purpose facility should be developed.  Heard from Morgan item should be pulled and brought back after meeting with advisory committee and get their feed-back.


Morgan motion to table/Holt  Hinson question


Hinson said he requested $5,000


Chair called for vote 5-0



Discussion of the Summer Youth Program

  Jackson introduced above item.


V said his take-in Leon County, private agencies that hire youth are ones that pay them and not taxpayers’ money used.  Suggested solicit private agencies and would have lot more able to be hires.  Maybe GCDC and Chamber to start soliciting private companies to hire youth.


Hinson said must invest in youth.  Reduced funding from $132,250 to $50,000, have crime and don’t want to employ the kids. 


Hinson moved to table until next meeting and then waived comments to citizen.  V said heard motion and died for lack of second.


Janice Maxwell, 715 Harden Street, Quincy-educator-appeared before the Board.  success of community is the youth. 


V said this was agendaed for discussion and not action so no need to be tabled.


Hinson thanked Ms. Maxwell for coming.  Wanted to put this on Agenda for next meeting. 


Holt thanked Mrs. Maxwell for comments.  Holt said there were citizens that will say different.  Asked how much School system contribute to summer youth program and local municipalities. 

Hinson said they just put on floor to pay students from Tallahassee to come here and do work.  Something wrong with that statement.


Hinson motion


V said money to be used FAMU students, money coming from fire insurance fund, not general fund. 


Leslie Steele, City Manager from Midway stands in support of her commissioner.  Take money from Purvis Gray and apply to this


Morgan stepped out 7:20 p.m.


Jim McShane, CareerSource, appeared before the Board. 


Morgan returned at 7:22 p.m.


Program can grow and agree with both commissioners, get GCDC and Chamber involved.


Mrs. Maxwell appeared before the Board again. 


V asked that she schedule an appointment with Jackson and HR.



Discussion of the Emergency Housing Program

  Mrs. Jackson introduced the above item


Hinson said this was another item he brought up as well. 


Hinson moved to table


Holt said there was $100,000


V stepped out 7:33


Holt said money needed to be spent wisely.  Had lady call and said spent $68,000 and complained how wall was painted-need citizen buy-in and wants constraints on money. 


V returned at 7:36 p.m.


Hinson asked for research to be brought back regarding senior citizens.



Black Biz Crawl and Expo







  No report






  Gadsden County Day was huge success.  Black Caucus was impressed and looking to adopt Gadsden County and putting funding behind.  Will be touring Gadsden County to look at damage.


Applications for summer program will be accepted from April 1st – April 26th


Jackson asked for direction regarding Task Orders-her understanding was if under threshold of $25,000, the Board wishes for Administrator to execute task orders versus bringing them all before the Board.    


Clerk said heard what said-statute that says all contracts, agreements to be signed by the Board, regardless of your awarded amount.  Problem becomes with County Administrator signing the documents.  She should be presented to the Board, signed by Chair, that’s Clerk’s interpretation.  We believe the Board ought to know about these things, even if presented on the Consent Agenda for ratification.


V said thought that particular concern has been addressed with the comment the Clerk made, put on Consent Agenda.  Said if understood correctly, he saying if expenditure was to be for item that is not contractual, does not have to come before Board.  Clerk agreed.  Clerk said they ought to see task orders, change orders, contracts, agreements, the Board needs to see them and be a part of the record.


Dee said publically, do not agree or disagree with that, just want to follow will of Board.  Task Order in question Board had accepted bid of architect, currently trying to get Communications Systems up and going at Sheriff’s Office and is Task Order presented and will need to bring back at next meeting according to Clerk’s Office.  Would prefer to move forward with Capital Projects if not $25,000. According to County Attorney, if this Board approved her authority on that, then she could move forward in the future.  She said just for continuing services agreements they have already approved, not for everybody.


David said have certain continuing contracts that they have approved as Board, under those continuing contracts, there have to be separate task orders to be approved.  What they approved was certain contractor so don’t have to go out to bid everything pursuant to Procurement Policy.  Do have to have task order that is approved.  What Clerk referring to is that there is a statute that says under Administrator’s authority, can negotiate different contracts but subject to board approval.  Procurement policy says somewhat inconsistent, says under $25,000, can be approved by Administrator without coming back to Board, policy does not expressly state that the Administrator is authorized to execute contracts, task orders and don’t think continuing contracts specifically state that either, thinks state approved by County,  but matter of interpretation.  His advice to Administrator was it was will of the Board and if Board wants everything to come so they can see it again as a consent item, fine.  If will of Board they do not want things that were under $25,000 to come to them, even in form of consent order, can make that expressly clear in the continuing contracts and Procurement Policy, don’t know if will change Clerk’s interpretation of Statute, but something that could do to make clear in their contracts and policy.


V said there is conflict between local government policy and State policy.  State policy actually supersedes.  He said for them to do what right by law.  Told Administrator if need to bring back to iron out procurement policy to make sure not in violation.  Suggested meet and resolve. 


Holt said previous practice was all had to say.


Taylor said sounds like change orders and Board needs to consider.  $25,000 lot of money to give free rein over, when hear someone say need to look at contracts or what being done, makes her pull back.  In her opinion threshold should be $5,000 and think need to come back and look at. Hinson seconded that. 


V said if they recalled was $25,000, voted to make if $5,000 raised back to $25,000 and now want to take back to $5,000.


Holt said difference was when was $25,000, were building libraries, fire stations, etc. and saved them running back and forth.  Really need grant writer.


Hinson said he was one that made motion to reduce amount when Presnell was Administrator because funding was low and think when knew was Robert’s last month in office, motion made to increase $25,000.  Had about $7 Million and now down to $2.8 Million and need to look carefully at every penny now.


Administrator said Clerk provides oversight of what she spends and make sure nothing spent except what been budgeted; increasing the threshold to $25,000 actually saves money because a lot of business comes to that threshold that has been budgeted and able to get quotes under that amount versus bidding where everyone increases the amount; pointed out during her tenure they have saved money in lot of areas and increased revenue.






  Questions at end of special meeting about any misadvise or miscommunication of his advice.  When Board decided to take vote to pay overtime, unless decide to take position some intentional misleading, cannot treat Administrator different from other exempt employees.


V asked about contract with CRMC-when up for renewal and when will body get revisions to renewal.  Dee said she requested a 3 month extension to June.  Glazer been working actively on this and has sent a red-line lease to them for their input. 


Holt said sent some emails on this item, feel need to send proposal and counter-proposal; 1 member of GHI Board wanted to look at draft.  Could draft be sent.  Requires more work than last one.  Asked Weiss to let Glazer know need to get on this.


V said to impress on law firm sense of urgency.


He assured them they understand, appreciate and agree.  In speaking with Administrator, felt had enough information to go forward. 


Holt said this was time factor.





Report and Discussion of Public Issues



Commissioner Eric Hinson, District 1

  Hinson asked Justin Ford to come forward.  Asked status of Brickyard Road.  Justin said DOT project and understood August this year. 


Holt asked Ford about the Beautification project at I-10-not familiar with project.  V asked her to email to Administrator and her to him and he will check at next CRTPA meeting.


Hinson said had not of concerns from citizens.


Suzanne Lex appeared before the Board regarding the beautification project and explained. 


Hinson said brought up couple of years ago, when coming from Quincy exit toward Midway/Tallahassee doesn’t show Midway.  Jackson said McNealy could take care of that, was also working on Gretna.



Commissioner Gene Morgan, District 3

  Requested to have agendaed the County Administrator’s position for discussion and action.  V said will put on there.


Facebook Live

Requested that be brought back on agenda also.


Repaving on Little Sycamore Road-wanted to make sure citizens are aware.


Justin reappeared-said not inspecting job-flaw in job, not near complete. 


Jackson asked regarding County Administrator, V asked what were options.  Morgan said general agenda item to have open discussion and make decision if necessary on moving forward with position.


Weiss said by statute removal requires notice and Administrator has right to request a hearing.



Commissioner Brenda Holt, District 4

  Grant writer-want to see that agendaed to get money in here. 


Morgan stepped out at 8:19 p.m.


Wants discussion on SCRAP and SCOP money.


Would like to schedule a meeting after this legislative session to see how could better work it.


Morgan returned 8:20 p.m.


Holt said very important to discuss ahead of time.  Between Quincy and high schools too far to travel during hurricanes.  Need to work with School Board-box they can check when building new school that doesn’t have to be built to hurricane standards.  Need to discuss with them.  Want the two boards to sit down together. 


Have discussed before about going to Columbus, MS, need to get bus.



Commissioner Sherrie Taylor Vice-Chair, District 5

  Taylor asked about Gulf Pipeline-is that same outfit that tried to come before?  Someone reached out to her-had discussion with particular business about eminent domain about pipes.  Was told would not take land but now getting letters where land trying to be taken.


Hurricane season coming back.  County failed to get Red Cross to certify some of buildings to be shelters. 


Want Change Orders to not go by and is concerned.  Want to protect her (Administrator) and the County.


Someone mentioned a workshop regarding procurement policy and want make sure language in place to make sure Board has control of expenditures.


Heard conversation about purchasing schools for economic development and not hiring students because schools responsibility. 


Heard said tonight to have people meet halfway regarding housing but if look at who getting help, seniors, and handicapped and they have limited income. 


Asked Administrator to find out about Gulf Pipe Line and peoples’ property being taken; want to target Red Cross.


Want to bring back the $25,000 to have agendaed for discussion.  The Clerk said some contracts have gone forward and Board has not seen them and she wants to see them.


Hinson said had opportunity to break bread with Appropriations Chair.  Al Lawson’s name came up.  Need to do what’s right and made motion to put on next agenda to do what right.  His team has relationship and need all help in Gadsden County.  Need to look at that process again and want to discuss and vote on it at next meeting.  V said he and Administrator will consider that because will go into fiscal constraints.  No money in coffers.  Can agenda it for consideration.


Taylor said concurred with Hinson it be agendaed.



Commissioner Anthony “Dr. V” Viegbesie,, Chair, District 2

  Said good job Gadsden County did at the Capitol.  All heard was raving of Gadsden County.


Receipt and File









Adjourned at 8:39 p.m.