Board of Supervisors - May 3, 2007 Workshop Meeting

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The Wise County Board of Supervisors met in a Workshop meeting on Thursday, May 3, 2007 at 6:00 p.m. in the Board of Supervisors meeting room located in the Wise County courthouse.  The following were present:

Honorable Ronald L. Shortt – Chairman
Honorable Steve Bates – Vice-Chairman
Honorable Virginia Meador
Honorable John W. Peace II
Honorable Robert R. Adkins
Honorable Robert E. Robbins
Honorable Fred A. Luntsford
Honorable Leland Branham – members of said Board and
Glen A. Skinner – County Administrator
Shannon C. Scott – Assistant County Administrator
Karen T. Mullins – County Attorney
Annette Underwood – Executive Secretary

PRAYER

Bob Adkins led in prayer.

PLEDGE

All led in the pledge of allegiance to the flag.

IN RE:  AGENDA / ADDITIONS

The following items were reviewed for addition to the agenda:

Add to Presentations

  • Proclamation – Valley Volunteer Fire Department

  • Coeburn High School – FCCLA Request for funds

  • May 10:  County budget for FY 2007-2008

Add to New Business

  • Audit RFP Review Committee Recommendation

  • Authorize County Administrator to execute contract with Morgan Keegan

  • Resolution – Primary Road Projects –Six Year Improvement Plan

  • Budget amendment #62 and #63

IN RE:  FCCLA – COEBURN HIGH SCHOOL

Julia Hall, members of the Coeburn FCCLA addressed the Board regarding the Coeburn High School Chapter of FCCLA that recently competed in STAR events in Parliamentary Procedure at the State level, and won in the senior division.

The Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) is a student organization that provides young men and women opportunities for personal development and preparation for adult life.  Through participation in FCCLA, members develop skills to help them grow into dynamic leaders, and serve as responsible members in their communities.

For the students to compete in the national STAR events competition, $15,000 is needed for expenses.  At the present time, fundraisers and donations from local businesses are ongoing to meet the June 1 deadline.  The Board was asked to contribute $3,000.

Chairman Shortt asked the County Administrator to check the records to ascertain action that was taken by the Board on a similar request last year.

IN RE:  PANDEMIC FLU PREPAREDNESS

Ron Pendleton, Pandemic Flu Coordinator representing Virginia Department of Health LENOWISCO Health District, provided a power point presentation on pandemic flu preparedness.  He provided the latest background information on the potential threat posed by H5N1 avian influenza (bird flu) and summarized the new federal guidance on recommended planning and preparedness measures.

IN RE:  SCHOOL BOARD BUDGET  FY 2007-2008

Dr. Killough presented to the Board a slide presentation featuring school personnel, and students in their classes to include music and nursing.

He spoke briefly on the schools activities, its accomplishments, achievements, and the School Board’s goals to prepare students to meet the challenges of the future

Ron Vicars, Director of Business and Finance, presented the School Board budget for FY 2007-2008 for a total Operations Budget of $72,048,500.00.  The proposed budget includes a 5% pay increase for teachers, an 8% pay increase for support staff, and a 4% pay increase for administrators.  The Capital Outlay budget has increased to approximately $11.74 million which is due to the planned construction of gymnasiums at Powell Valley Primary and Coeburn Middle schools. The requested funds from the County is $14.75 million which includes an increase of $750,000 more than last year.   

Mr. Vicars reviewed the budget by line item noting any increases or decreases.

RECESS

A recess was taken at 7:10 PM.

The meeting reconvened at 7:15 PM

IN RE:  PROCLAMATION – VALLEY VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENT

Supervisor Peace presented to Phillip Barker, a member of the Valley Volunteer Fire Department, a proclamation recognizing the outstanding public service, performance, and achievements of Valley Volunteer Fire Department and the valuable services it provides to the community.

IN RE:  PUBLIC HEARING – CHANGE OF ZONING

A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizens’ input regarding a request from Sherri Meade for a Change of Zoning on property located at 10118 Washington Road, Coeburn for the purpose of setting up a dog grooming business, selling supplies, and for a future dog kennel.

There was no one to speak for or against the proposed Change of Zoning.

There being no comments, the public hearing was closed.

IN RE:  PUBLIC HEARING – CONDITIONAL CHANGE OF USE

A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizens’ input regarding a request from Jason Hughes, Co-owner of the Golden Homestead, Inc. for a Conditional Change of Use on property located at 4300B Powell Valley Road, Big Stone Gap behind Riggs Oil on Rt. 610 for the purpose of remodeling an existing structure for a seven (7) unit rental apartment building.

There was no one to speak for or against the Conditional Change of Use.

There being no comments, the public hearing was closed.

IN RE:  PUBLIC HEARING – AMENDMENT SOLID WASTE ORDINANCE #2-1988

A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizens’ input regarding an amendment to modify and/or clarify Wise County Solid Waste Ordinance #2-1988.

There being no public comments, the public hearing was closed.

IN RE:  PUBLIC HEARING – APPLICATION BY DOMINION ENERGY – FOR LANDFILL

A public hearing was duly advertised for this date to receive citizens’ comments regarding an application by Dominion Energy for a proposed solid waste management facility site in the Virginia City area.

Kathy Selvage, a resident of the Stephens area, spoke openly regarding the dangers of the proposed power plant polluting our ground water, streams and air quality.  She reminded the Board that in prior years others have wanted a landfill in Wise County but have been refused because the County was protected by Ordinance #2-1988.   After reading the proposed application, she found many statements that mentioned ongoing tests but no mention of them being completed.  This in itself lets anyone know that if the test results have not been completed there’s no assurance that it is safe.  Ms. Selvage asked the Board to be cautious, act wisely, and make sure this power plant is in the best interest of Wise County.  Keep the environment clean and healthy.  Give time for the tests to be completed.

Larry Bush, a resident of the Exeter area, voiced his opposition to the proposed landfill.

Hannah Morgan, a resident of Appalachia, voiced her opposition to the proposed power plant but if the plant was a sure thing then it should be used in the best interest of Wise County.  In doing research, Ms. Morgan brought to the Board’s attention that flyash can be used to make concrete making it a beneficial resource.  She also noted other uses of flyash and encouraged the Board to consider these options before approving another landfill.

Bacon Beaty, an Ecologist with The Nature Conservancy, located in Abingdon stated that the mission of Nature’s Conservancy is the conservation of plants and animals.  He asked the Board to consider that without failures there are still metal leaks from these types of landfills and go into the streams and ground water.  Getting into the drinking water can cause cancer, bone loss, and kidney failure to name a few.  He asked the Board to seek out expert help to get input on the questions that need to be answered and become knowledgeable of both good and bad aspects of the power plant and the landfill.  He brought to the Board’s attention that the power plant is for fifty years and he encouraged the Board to have Dominion to provide a plan to deal with the flyash for the life of the plant.   He further noted that there may have been underground mining on this property.

There being no further comments the public hearing was closed.

PUBLIC EXPRESSION

There was no one to speak during public expression.

IN RE:  ROADS AND HIGHWAYS

Jackie Christian, representing VDOT in the absence of Residency Administrator T. G. Branson, gave a brief update on construction projects throughout the County.

Board members provided needs in their districts for VDOT review.

IN RE:  REVENUE SHARING FUNDS FY 2008

Mr. Christian stated that as a result of the transportation actions by the Governor and the 2007 General Assembly, additional funding has been made available to the Revenue Sharing Program, so that for FY 2008 and each year thereafter, the Commonwealth Transportation Board will be able to fully fund the program at the $50 million dollar level.  In order to achieve that funding level, the Board will be consolidating the funding appropriated to the program in FY 2007 with that provided for FY 2008.  All applications will be prioritized in accordance with the tiers established in Code.

IN RE:  OTHER ITEMS REVIEWED

  • Set public hearing (June 7 @ 6:00 p.m.) on a proposed amendment to Ordinance for Adoption of Security Processing Fee

  • Set public hearing (June 7 @ 6:00 p.m.) on eight proposed E-911 road name additions

  • Angel Care Ambulance Services

  • Budget Amendments #52-#61

  • Appointment

IN RE:  PUMP AND HAUL – VIRGINIA ADAMS

Administrator Skinner reported that the County has received a letter from Virginia Adams withdrawing her request for a “Pump and Haul” Permit.  She also thanked the Board for all its efforts to provide her with this permit.

IN RE:  MUTUAL AID MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING

This MOU is between the University of Virginia’s College of Wise and the Wise County Emergency Operations Center.  This is another means of pooling resources together in times of a declared disaster.

IN RE:  RESOLUTION – SUDDENLINK CABLE TRANSFER

The County has received another request to transfer a cable franchise.  This is the one in the St. Paul area that the County approved a transfer for last year.  The previous transfer was from Charter to Cebridge, d/b/a as Suddenlink.  This transfer is to JetBroadBand.  By this resolution, Wise County is requesting a similar resolution modification as was done in the past with a new request for an Educational Access channel and an interconnect to network provider (fiber optic) when available.  The County is also requesting that these channels be listed in the basic tier.

IN RE:  AUDIT RFP REVIEW COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION

Administrator Skinner reported on the three (3) audit firms that responded to the County’s Audit RFP advertisement.

IN RE:  MORGAN KEEGAN CONTRACT

Administrator Skinner reported that he had attended a seminar several months ago that was presented by Ronald L. Tillett, Managing Director for Morgan Keegan.  Morgan Keegan is a company that provides financial advisory services, counsel and associated services related to the development of the County’s financing plans and strategies associated with capital outlay projects and the development of various debt and investment policies for the County including the County’s School Board, and the PSA.  He asked the Board to consider authorizing him to execute a contract with Morgan Keegan for these services for Wise County.  These services will be compensated on an hourly basis.

COUNTY ADMINISTRATOR’S REPORT

Administrator Skinner reported on the following items:

  • Update on cell phone providers

  • Update Solid Waste Permit Application

BOARD COMMENTS

Few comments were made by Board members.

Supervisor Branham reminded the Board of the upcoming Allocation Hearing to be held in Salem.  He suggested adding to next week’s agenda, a resolution requesting highway funds for specific priorities throughout the County. 

Supervisor Robbins asked the Board to consider some form of opposition to the proposed closing of the Virginia Employment Commission in Norton.

Chairman Shortt stated that he has been asked that the County review means of disposing of its tires.  In the process of cleaning up the illegal dump sites, tires are being scattered about and citizens need to be made aware of the method used to dispose of these tires properly.  The dump sites having to be revisited need “No Dumping” signs with penalties written on them.  He encouraged the use of ground hog cameras in the areas where illegal dumping continues.

Administrator Skinner was asked to have the Litter Warden look into this problem and provide a report back to the Board on his findings. 

ADJOURN

There being no further comments, the meeting adjourned at 8:20 p.m.

ATTEST:                                             WISE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

 

____________________________            _____________________________________
Glen A. Skinner, Clerk                            Ronald L. Shortt, Chairman

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