Board of County Commissioners

Gadsden County, Florida

Regular Public Meeting

May 3, 2022

6:00 p.m.


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

                                Ronterious “Ron” Green, Vice Chair, District 5

                                Eric Hinson, District 1

                                Kimblin NeSmith, District 3

                                Brenda Holt, District 4

                                Edward J. Dixon, County Administrator

                                Clayton Knowles, County Attorney

                                Nicholas Thomas, Clerk

                                Marcella Blocker, Deputy Clerk

                                Sara Green, Deputy Clerk



  Chair welcomed everyone and called meeting to order at 6:00 p.m.


Invocation by Rev. Vivian Grant, Richbay African Methodist Episcopal Church, and Chair then led in the Pledge



  Add Older Americans’ Month Proclamation

Pull Item 4 from Consent Agenda and move to General Business as Item 5A

5B Approval of Letter of Support Havana Community Development Center


Holt/NeSmith 5-0



   Presented Proclamation to Seniors Recognizing Older American Citizens

Chair Viegbesie read aloud the Proclamation and it was presented to Ms. Jennifer Pollack


Holt asked for Proclamation for the other Senior Citizen groups in Midway, Chattahoochee and Gretna


  Green/Holt 5-0



Ratification Memo



Approval of Minutes

·         November 16, 2021 Veteran’s Monument Workshop

·         March 15, 2022 – Affordable Housing Program Workshop



Approval of Funding from the Gadsden County Law Enforcement Education Fund (LEEF) for the Injury and Death Investigation CJSTC#036 Training



Approval of Resolution 2022-013 Grant Budget Amendments for FY 2022

Item moved to 5a









Anyone wishing to speak on agenda items or non-agenda items should schedule or notify the County Administrator’s Office before attending the meeting and will be asked to follow the Gadsden County Public Meetings Citizens Access Guidelines.  Also, public comment for Commission meetings can be submitted via email to until noon on January 18, 2022.  Comments submitted after the deadline but prior to the meeting will be added to the official record, but the County cannot guarantee that Commissioners and staff will have adequate time to review comments prior to the meeting.

  Commissioner NeSmith read the above statement aloud.



Rosetta Hylton-Rolle Anderson and Kim Gilmore from Donate Life Florida appeared before the Board to thank them for lighting up the Courthouse in April for Donate Life Month.







Potter Woodberry Road Supplemental Agreement

  Mr. Dixon introduced the above item

Holt/V 5-0



Approval of Resolution 2022-013 Grant Budget Amendments for FY 2022

  Dixon introduced above item




Hinson asked for brief synopsis


Dixon explained





Request for Letter of Support for Havana Community Development Corporation

  Dixon introduced above item

Hinson/V  Holt question


Holt asked why not come before the Board


V said understood Congressman contacted them outside of meeting and asked them to request letter of Support


  NeSmith asked if item was included on the dais-yes.


  Holt said wanted to get organized process.


Chair called for vote 5-0



Clinical Internship Agreements with Area Colleges

  Dixon introduced above item. 


Hinson/NeSmith  5-0



Approval of Construction-Educational & Vocational Building

  Dixon introduced above item and said it is designed to offer training courses for inmates at the Gadsden County Correctional Facility will be funded 100% by the Inmate Welfare Fund.


NeSmith/Holt 5-0


Hinson asked if could have more discussion because community may have questions.


  Col. Barkley appeared before the Board to explain the item.


  Holt said she visited one over by Pensacola and they did a lot of job training so when they got out, they had basic job training.  Holt said also while they were in the facility, they were able to go to job sites and work and earn money.


  Hinson thanked Barkley and stated he metamorphosized the jail.


  Barkley said Mr. Dixon was the one that actually started this program when he worked at the jail.  



Rev. Gaines spoke regarding thanking the Board for work they were doing in the Friendship Community regarding a Neighborhood Watch program.



Approval of the Purchase of the Mobile Medical Health Unit

  Dixon said Board agreed to purchase mobile medical unit on behalf of the Community Health Council and opportunity is before them and citizens will start seeing the bus out and about in the different communities.


  Holt thanked Administrator and said when was discussing few years ago, this was something that when people come to town, they could visit the mobile health unit.  It will not be just for COVID, it will be for anyone that needed health care.  Holt asked if it will belong to the County and Dixon said for all intents and purposes, it will belong to the Health Council because the grant is with the Health Council.  She asked if the health council dissolved, where would the health unit go and Dixon said he did not know.  She said her personal feeling was this should go under the Board.


  Dixon explained the Health Council does a number of things and has multiple groups involved.




  NeSmith said from listening to Holt’s comments, created some additional clouds and wanted to make sure he understood.  He said the health unit would belong to the Health Council.  Dixon said grant was to the Health Council, NeSmith said that was an entity of the Board and Dixon said was independent of the Board. 


  Holt said reason she asked question was to get clarity and it did.  Health Council doing what they were asked to do.  


  NeSmith said health Council was independent entity the Board set up and the Board does not interact and Dixon said they interact all the time.


  Hinson said was similar to GCDC and if they decided they did not want to work with the Board could stop at any time and say thank you.  He said he had a few questions; they had conversation few times.  Holt and Dixon stated it will be the County Commissioners’ mobile unit.  V said if he understood his concerns, it was the same concerns the Clerk had in his email.  Hinson said the Board gave $400,000 to this organization; gave $75,000 from American Rescue Plan, $225,000 and said Holt signed contract on October 18th


  V said this money is reimbursable and will not cost anything.


  Hinson said he had valid concerns and was on point.  They approved to pay for this in October and asked difference between then and now, was the money already spent?  He said Holt gave interview on Channel 27 and they said in the article, the Gadsden County Health Council has been given $400,000 to start their mobile medical unit after the 2021 legislative session.  He asked if they received the funding, why was the Board paying additional funding? 


  Dixon said most of the money that came to the Council, came in and went out for the fight of COVID.  Health Council was the vessel used to rapidly give information out in the fight for COVID.  The health council is the agency to move quickly on the Board’s behalf and most of the money is passed through.  They also provided free medicine for the citizens if they qualify.  They also gave $75,000 and that was to power the board and operationalize the bus if there was no other funding.


  Hinson said last year between May-June, $75,000 went towards the bus.  Last year in October they gave $225,000 or $250,000 for the mobile unit.  Did they receive the $400,000 or how much did they receive out of that?


  Dixon said if he was speaking to the grant, the health council was only able to draw down for the service provided.  Only about $40,000-$60,000 of that money has been spent for the mobile unit.  The only reason council asked for this to be fronted, they do not have that money to purchase. 


  Holt said this was really not issue because they set the health council up to do this.  Put the money in, they purchase the unit, they go out in the community and do the work.  Instead of looking at the where’s and whys, they need to be applying for more money.  It was a simple process.  The other stuff about what we do and should do, we need to apply for more money to keep it going until we get a hospital. 


  Hinson said Holt has said of the Chamber does not come to the Board, they should not receive funding.  There are a lot of questions here.  Hinson said in every meeting, Holt and Dixon said the County should own the unit.  He said they could abandon the unit anytime.  Felt need to have conversation with Health Council.


Chair asked if there was a motion-yes.


  Hinson continued and said he cared about the seniors and citizens of the county, was for this but wanted to make sure they were compliant.  He asked if they had a signed copy of the Grant agreement.  Mr. Knowles said he received it today.


  V said this was something they started, and may not like way going right now and will not be costing the board.


 Dixon said there are costs, there are deliverables to this grant that have time limits.  If the bus is not purchased, there will be costs each month.


  Hinson said not our fault this coming the day of and is an executive problem.  He asked who the agreement was with, the Health Council or the Board and FDOH. 


  Knowles said contract was between GCHC and FDOH.  Hinson asked about (in reference to the Clerk’s email) the August 17, 2021 agreement.


  Dixon said the agreement has never been with the County.  The County is requesting funding for the health council, this was same as HCDC asking for support for funding. 


Hinson said Dixon received email same as he did and did the Clerk get something wrong?


Dixon said hard to believe but the Clerk may be mistaken. 


  Dixon said this contract came before them number of times to store the unit.  That is the deliverable that is needed to be met and they agreed to store and house the unit at that time.  Holt asked if vehicle would be County vehicle and he told her no.  The agreement is with GCHC. 


  Dixon said the requirement is to be purchased by date, not be delivered. 


  V said there is the $225,000 and $75,000.  The $75,000 he recalled they fronted to the health council from the American Rescue Plan and also gave money to the Sheriff’s Office.  The $250,000, even though they are loaning to the health council the disbursement is proof that some of money has been spent.


Hinson said he was reading directly from Clerk’s email and constituents deserve to hear what is being said.  He said it was understood by Board that they would have ownership of the unit.  Hos did everything change now?  There was further discussion around the dais.


  Holt said put motion in to call question but if


  Holt motion to move money from general fund to purchase mobile unit with reimbursement element/ Green second  4-1  Hinson opposed


  Dixon said for clarity, they did give Council $75,000 for operation of mobile unit.  All previous money has been for fight against COVID. 











  Need proclamation for Public Works

Holt/Green 5-0


Need Proclamation for EMS

Holt/Green 5-0 


Moving on grants in terms of emergency operation center and putting the correctional complex as the home and looking at other opportunities for siting and other new county facilities.


  V wanted to bring to his attention, when driving on Pt. Milligan, saw heaps of trash.  Dixon said citizens need to be mindful and careful because they are placing big pieces of concrete for the road there.






  Knowles said Ms. Bradley contacted them regarding an Executive Session and date will be Tuesday, May 10th at 4:00 p.m. and council has requested a Special meeting after shade meeting at 5:00


Green/NeSmith  5-0





Report and Discussion of Public Issues



Commissioner Brenda Holt, District 4

  Said was not trying to badger Administrator tonight but have had some calls.  She did not know who asked Clerk for this but if the Clerk had questions, he should be at the meeting so he could answer some of the questions.  Didn’t know if the Clerk was asked, but need to know what is the amount of interest being invested as of this year; which funds are they invested; how much invested in each fund; what are the institutions of the investments; which bank holds the County funds.


Talked with two pastors and they are impressed with Board and Administration. 



Commissioner Eric Hinson, District 1

  Hinson said was going by what Clerk asked and was not an attack on anybody.  If funding going out, need to make sure in line with what’s out there. 


Had 2 people call him today, have issues with refurbishing their homes, ramps, etc.  Used to have money and they abolished that.  Have lot of leaking roofs in the County.  Proposed to Board they give each commissioner $50,000.


Green stepped out 7:49 p.m.


Each Commissioner have funds and could send residents to office to see if they qualify.  Asked Board to create agenda item for next meeting to vote next meeting. 


Green returned 7:50 p.m.


V stepped out 7:51 p.m.


Wants to bring to board the emergency housing program to refurbish houses.


Have staff doing wonderful job, been hearing great things and they are putting people first and thanked them.  Had someone call him last week and he called staff and have not got return call and is about legislative aides, he had someone interested.  Dixon asked if called HR, called last week and no return call. 



Commissioner Kimblin NeSmith, District 3

  NeSmith said to follow-up comments by Hinson, went to Bradwell and passed on condolences to Jeronda and her sister for the loss of their mother. 


Heartfelt well wishes to Green for his sister.


V returned 7:55


Sent out congratulations to Sawdust community for working on park


Thanked members of Martin L. King committee for providing lunch today and was fantastic. 


Thanked Chair and commissioners for creating a holistic and inviting atmosphere at commission building. 


  Dixon said to piggyback his point, thanked them for presenting atmosphere and staff believes they are looking after them.  He thanked them for providing such an atmosphere. 


  He further stated, he was not proposing a message board as large as what was on the Courtyard, just want a messaging board on the Courthouse lawn that could be seen from east to west.


The people of Gadsden County want to recommend a development of a new ordinance, that the Chair make a State of Gadsden County address each year.


Closed with a comment made by Hinson, had opportunity to meet with Administrator and HR, was asked if had someone in mind and they want to open it to the public.


Dixon said he did not recall the Board voting, it was an individual commissioner’s choice.


   Holt said they must advertise position because is government money. 


  Hinson said at the time, NeSmith felt he wanted an aide.  He talked with other commissioners throughout the country and other commissioners do not advertise.  He stated with no disrespect to the Administrator, Holt picked him, selected him without him applying and was not advertised. 


  V said in Leon County, each commissioner determines their aide and it then goes through HR.  He did not think they really needed aides.


  Holt said Hinson echoed her name tonight and he voted for him.  She put in a motion and the Board voted on it.  They had advertised several times. 


  NeSmith said did not mention aides for it to take this direction.  Don’t remove the



Commissioner Anthony O. Viegbesie, Chair, District 2

  Suggested with Housing department, if she could put together packet and what they do to give to Commissioners so they could distribute to citizens to inform them what available would be good thing.


For citizens who use Pt. Milligan road, about to be widened and have concrete barriers on side of road and asked they be careful driving.


Made motion to request resolution to 2 individuals Charlie Shaw and Arthur Bodison-Holt second 5-0


Receipt and File









  Adjourned 8:22 p.m.





Place mini panel

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