Board of County Commissioners

Meeting Agenda

Thursday, January 21, 2021

4:00 p.m.


Present:               Brenda Holt, Chair, District 4

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

                                Eric Hinson, District 1

                                Kimblin NeSmith, District 3

                                Ronterious “Ron” Green, District 5

                                Edward J. Dixon, County Administrator

                                Clayton Knowles, County Attorney

                                Marcella Blocker, Deputy Clerk



  Chair welcomed everyone to special meeting, asked for moment of silence, led in Pledge of Allegiance


Amendments and approval of Agenda

  Dixon asked to move Item 5 to Number 2; pull CBOR Public Hearing and schedule for next Board meeting.  This was being done due to the threat and the County being closed.


Add 6a – Approval to Confirm the Assistant County Administrator and add 6b – Approval for AIG TankGuard Renewal Application on Policy FPL007512097


v/Green 5-0


Awards, Presentations and Appearances



V/Green 5-0


Approval and Signatures for Special Assessment Liens State Housing Initiative Partnership Program (SHIP) (Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance Program)


Items Pulled for Discussion



Due to COVID-19 and the efforts of the Gadsden County Board of County Commissioners to continue the practice of social distancing, Commissioners want to continue to hear from citizens under the Citizens Requesting to be Heard section of the agenda.

If citizens have any questions, comments, or concerns, please email and anticipate receiving a response within 48 hours.

The Board of County Commissioners would like to thank everyone for their patience and flexibility during this time.


Holt read aloud Covid statement


   Marion Lasley 


Chair Holt read aloud the email.





PUBLIC HEARING-(Legislative) Consideration of Adoption of Ordinance 2020-005 to amend Section 7001.1, by repealing the ‘Citizens Growth Management and Planning Bill of Rights’ (LDR 2020-02)






Addendum to Agreement for Legal Services    (Moved to Item 2)

  Dixon introduced the above item and stated Addendum would add Opal McKinney-Williams to the Agreement to provide legal services.


(Commissioner Viegbesie pointed out there might be Citizens requesting to be heard.)


Sean Pittman, Pittman Law Group, appeared before the Board.  This makes amendment to add Opal McKinney-Williams to provide legal services to the County.


Holt said to Pittman she mentioned to him the wording “or” and “and” and that meant a lot.  Mr. Pittman explained each attorney had an hourly amount next to their name of the hourly rate that they charged. 


V/Green 5-0



Approval of the Security Force Southeast, LLC Contract Extension

  Dixon introduced above item and to continue contract for 1 year.


V/Green 5-0



Appointment to the Northwest Florida Business Development County, Inc. d/b/a Opportunity Florida Board

  Dixon introduced above item and stated this was to appoint representative to serve on Opportunity Florida Board. 


  V nominated Nesmith to be representative/Green second


  Holt said couple of developments he will see and hope to model after them. 


Chair called for vote.  5-0 



Addendum to Agreement for Legal Services  (Moved to Item 2)



Discussion and Approval of the Extension of the Family First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)

  Dixon introduced above item and said was extension of Family First Coronavirus Response Act




  Holt asked for more information regarding this item because people not getting info.


  Dixon said provides up to 2 weeks or 80 hours of paid sick leave; 2 weeks or 80 hours of paid sick leave at 2/3 employee regular rate of pay due to having to care for individual being quarantined; up to 10 weeks paid leave under Family Medical Leave Act at 2/3 employee rate of pay


  Holt said this was perfect way to get info put


Called for vote 5-0



Approval to Conform the Assistant County Administrator

  Dixon introduced above item; approval to hire Assistant County Administrator, Georgette Daniels, currently employed with Miami Beach.  Impressed with her knowledge of what happening in Washington. 


  V asked if have evaluated and was comfortable with this person and this was who he believed could work with team-yes.


  NeSmith asked timeframe she was to start.  Early February.


  Green said was glad to see this.   This great move and great add to team.


V/Green 5-0


  Dixon wanted Board to understand this means lot-had 4 that interviewed and were outstanding.



Approval for AIG TankGuard Renewal Application on Policy FPL007512097

  Dixon introduced above item-insurance policy application on tanks located at Sheriff’s Office, Jail and Public Works.  Policy been floating for while and needs to get done to make sure tanks stay insured.


V/Green 5-0






Clerk’s Office was not asked for update. 


County Administrator





County Attorney




 Pittman thanked them for confidence in adding another attorney to team.  Congratulated Mr. Knowles on birth of daughter. 


V pointed out Clerk Updates was overlooked and Holt said Clerk not here and was why she did not address Clerk’s issue.


Discussion by Commissioners



Commissioner Eric Hinson, District 1

  Hinson said wanted to have Attorney give brief synopsis of Clerk’s email and what transpired and outcome and asked for copy of bids and RFP qualifications of what must be done for bids and RFP’s; wanted all the steps and processes that had to be done.


  Read letter Clerk sent out, was awe struck; in his humble opinion can’t be true because have competent attorneys and said corporation did not have all his ducks in a row and wanted to know if true on record so can move forward.



Commissioner Kimblin NeSmith, District 3

  Nesmith said to discuss briefly-sure everyone aware of letter from Clerk.  Was quite a bit of chatter in community; received calls from citizens concerned not only with that but other dialogue that took place as result of that letter.  Think, as moving forward, need to stay on top of agreement.  Several residents in his district that was not aware of this service and need to come up with plan or process to inform community of available resource.



Commissioner Ronterious Green, District 5

  Green welcomed Ms. McKinney-Williams.


Green said want transparency and wants people to know what going on-things have transpired regarding contract and also received multiple calls.  He wants to see FCI back on agenda at next meeting so can add transparency and hoped Clerk would be in attendance or someone on his behalf that can represent him to have all levels of clarity as relates to this contract.


Encouraged citizens to come to meeting or send in concerns so can be addressed in professional manner. 



Commissioner Anthony O. Viegbesie, District 2

  Also received calls from citizens and was wished Clerk was here today to help them understand the last part of the Memo with regards to the non-existence of that particular entity they were in contract with.  Also called attorney regarding the validity to statutes that were referenced.  Attorney found 2 corporations; one was FCI, Inc with dot and other is FCI, Inc with no dot.  Both companies cannot exist with Department of State and FCI dissolved one of the corporations.  Looked at contract and was signed with corp having “dot”.  Wish Clerk was present so conversation could be had but since not, hoped he would be present in future so differences could be discussed and resolved.


  Hinson said they had 2 attorneys here, could they expound on this.


  Pittman addressed the Board and said to 3rd issue-their opinion is a non-issue.  Contract between FCI and County is legal, contracted with legal entity and was issue with period behind the “inc” but even in situation where is typo error, is not material as far as their opinion is concerned.  If commission wants to talk more about Clerk’s memo, will continue but that is repeated and lingering issue that he was hearing.


Green asked about CARES Act money and when will receive draw-down from CARES Act funding.


  Dixon said was not one pot, was whole lot of pots of money.  Draw-downs happening continuously.  May be in large pot, might be small, based on when State is reviewing, once reviewed, send it down.


Green stated knew was going to General Funds, however, would they still make readily available some of funds to people that have been impacted.


Dixon said according to their figures, will have money at end of program and can re-allocate to program trying to fashion out and address some of needs.


  Holt said only 12 counties in State received all of funds from Federal Government; other counties had to draw down funds.  Gadsden County has never received all of CARES Act money and when Governor was here, she asked him about what happened when small counties could not draw down and he advised her to get with Secretary (inaudible) about draw-down.  Have not received all the money, waiting on third phase.  Dixon said 2nd phase of CARES program coming and most places will be a direct benefit-counties under 250,000 will not, which means we have to go through State process again-may not be as difficult to go through.


Holt said documentation has to be there.  If really want to know what paid, can do public records request at Courthouse and can see what paid out.  Board did not give out or receive one penny of money.


  PPP loans-Board does not do loans.


  Hinson said glad she talking about honesty and truth; think have honest people on Board.  Asked if have to re-bid CARES Program again?  Been rumblings across county and street committee talking big about one contract.    Holt said would need to be in workshop to determine how to go forward.  Right now, no money to discuss. 


  Holt said know they spend taxpayer’s money but CARES $ came from federal government.  Accepted what could get from federal government and trying to figure out how can get more money.  


  V said his only comment at this point was in relation to Clerk’s memo and wanted Clerk to be here and wanted to ask of attorney regarding memos.  Due to meeting scheduled, will hold back his questions with regard to merit in each of aspects of memo.  Heard in response to memo was Clerk had some kind of over-reach with regards to validity of contract and provider of service whether defunct business or existing business but other aspects of memo that has legal ramifications and want attorney to provide legal opinion of the statutes that were stated.  Hoped Clerk would be here to explain himself because did not think every aspect of that memo is an over-reach.


  NeSmith asked Administrator if there was a balance on CARES Act money-yes and will make available.  NeSmith said there were other counties that did not receive and we applied for those funds


  Holt said justified by what been spending.  PPP loans are out there-apply. 


  Hinson said spoke with healthcare officials regarding vaccines throughout County-Holt said to address with administrator. 



Commissioner Brenda A. Holt, District 4



  Adjourned at 4:59 p.m.





Place mini panel

Select format:   WMA/WMV   AAC/H264
  For mobile devices: Auto restore player panel
  Special mode for Android