Board of Supervisors - February 4, 2010 Special Called Meeting

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The Wise County Board of Supervisors met in a Special Called meeting on Thursday, February 4, 2010 at 5:30 p.m. in the Board of Supervisors meeting room located in the Wise County Courthouse.  The following were present:

Honorable J. H. Rivers, Chairman
Honorable Dana Kilgore, Vice-Chair
Honorable Virginia Meador
Honorable Fred Luntsford
Honorable Ronald L. Shortt
Honorable Steve Bates
Honorable Robert R. Adkins
Honorable Robert E. Robbins, members of said Board and
Shannon C. Scott – County Administrator
David L. Cox – Financial Administrator
Karen T. Mullins – County Attorney
Annette Underwood – Executive Secretary

PRAYER

Shannon Scott led in prayer.

PURPOSE OF MEETING

Chairman Rivers explained that two (2) members of the Board of Supervisors have requested this meeting for the purpose of:

  • Approving a Resolution Supporting Funding for School Consolidation

  • Approving a Resolution Opposing SB564

  • Approving the Wise County PSA Moral Obligation Document

  • Approving a Resolution Supporting HB849 – ATV’s Town Streets

  • Approving a Resolution Authorizing Execution of Support Agreement for PSA Water Treatment Project

  • Change date for February 11, 2010 voting meeting to February 18, 2010

IN RE:  RESOLUTION SUPPORTING FUNDING FOR SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION

Administrator Scott gave a brief overview of the proposed joint resolution of the Wise County School Board and the Board of Supervisors.  The resolution is requesting consideration for funding for construction of Wise County schools from the $300,000,000 in bonds available to Virginia Local Government with a zero percent repayment.

A motion was made by Dana Kilgore, seconded by Bob Adkins, to approve the resolution as presented.

Supervisor Robbins voiced his concern with some of the language within the resolution.  In paragraph two, the vote that was made on the $42 million was not for school consolidation but for school construction.  In the third paragraph, it speaks of more support of funds at a later date; that could lead to devastation for several of the communities even though they still pay taxes for the schools.  He expressed his view that in the future, with consolidation of the schools, the elementary schools will become feeder schools as they were in the 70’s.  He feels that the citizens are not being heard among other reasons such as the economy and loss of jobs for changing the wording in these two paragraphs.  The wording is misleading as to the intent of the Board when the $42 million was approved for the schools.  He said he would not support any resolution that deals with consolidation.

A motion was made by Robby Robbins, seconded by Fred Luntsford, to table this request to find out more about the economy. 

Supervisor Luntsford concurred with Mr. Robbins in that the second paragraph does lead one to believe that the Board is supporting consolidation.  The second paragraph indicates that the Board is also directing and/or supporting construction of three new schools which the Board of Supervisors can not do.

Mr. Luntsford further noted that the promise was made to Appalachia Elementary School to build a gym.  To date, there has been no movement on that.  There is money available for this project, but there has been no one to come forward from the School Board to request those funds.

Supervisor Shortt also had some reservations regarding some of language in the proposed resolution.  He also understood that the $300,000,000 in bonds were to be used for school construction.

Supervisor Kilgore explained that this resolution is not for consolidation.  The State of Virginia has $300,000,000 that has to be allocated to local governments with zero financing.  This resolution in not applying for money, but asking the Governor to make this money more available to the Commonwealth of Virginia for building new schools or for renovation.  If the money is not allocated to Virginia, it will go to another state.

Chairman Rivers concurred with Supervisor Kilgore noting that in a recent meeting the Assistant Secretary of Education recommended that the Board prepare a resolution requesting these funds be made available to Virginia.  At that meeting they also discussed the possibility of changing the policy on how the money could be spent and distributed.

Supervisor Adkins stated that the Board would not be good stewards of County money if they did not pursue this as instructed by the Assistant Secretary of Education.

Supervisor Bates stated that the majority of the Board supports the School Board resolution.  Mr. Bates explained that consolidation is going to happen in some form or fashion.  It is up to the Board to support any funding sources that may be available to provide the best for our school children.  With the State cuts, consolidation will not be an option but a necessity.  The County cannot keep six schools open especially with all the State cuts. Regarding the gym for the Appalachia Elementary, there must be enough votes on this Board for more funds to build that gym this is part of the consolidate plan.

Supervisor Luntsford stated that the Appalachia Elementary Gym was excluded from the consolidation plan.  The Board set aside money for the school construction in the amount of $9,000,000.  He feels that the Board would support appropriating funding for the gym out of that $9,000,000 if a request was received from the School Board.

Supervisor Kilgore asked that paragraph #2 be amended as follows:

  • WHEREAS the Wise County Board of Supervisors has voted during a regular scheduled Board of Supervisors meeting held on November 12, 2009 to approve funding in the amount of $42 million for schools, and

  • Delete paragraph #3

Chairman Rivers asked for a vote on the substitute motion to table the resolution.

Aye-    Fred Luntsford             Nay-    Steve Bates
            Robby Robbins                                    Bob Adkins
            Ronnie Shortt                           Virginia Meador
                                                            J. H. Rivers
                                                            Dana Kilgore

Motion failed.

Ronnie Shortt made a motion to approve the resolution with language change in paragraph #2 as stated by Supervisor Kilgore and deleting paragraph #3 as indicated by Board members.  Bob Adkins seconded the motion.

Supervisor Kilgore asked Mr. Shortt if this motion could be considered as a friendly amendment to her main motion to approve the resolution.  Mr. Shortt was agreeable to this.

Aye-    Steve Bates                  Nay-    None
            Bob Adkins                            
            Virginia Meador
            Fred Luntsford
            Robby Robbins
            Dana Kilgore
            J. H. Rivers
            Ronnie Shortt

Motion Carried

RESOLUTION #                         2010

(Said resolution is on file in the County Administrator’s Office)

IN RE:  RESOLUTION – SB564

Administrator read the proposed resolution on SB564.

A motion was made by Virginia Meador, seconded by Bob Adkins, to approve the resolution opposing SB564.

Supervisor Robbins noted that there were citizens in the audience that may want to speak regarding this resolution and other resolutions that are on the agenda.  By not being able to speak they feel as though they do not have representation on the Board.

Chairman Rivers stated that this is a Special Called meeting and public expression was not on the agenda as advertised.  Adding public expression to future special called meeting can be taken into consideration by the Board at a later date.  At that time, the floor would be open for everyone to speak.

Supervisor Luntsford questioned why the Board had to vote on this resolution.  He received an email from Senator Ticer, and she indicated that she will be presenting an amendment that explicitly states that underground mining operations would not be affected by this bill.

Therefore, Mr. Luntsford made a substitute motion to table this resolution for further information and until such time this amendment has been considered.  Robby Robbins seconded the motion.

Supervisor Bates spoke regarding the impact the passage of the bill would have on the economy, which included the loss of approximately 18,000 jobs.  He further stated that this would help to clean up the streams.

Chairman Rivers explained that the resolution before the Board is opposing the current resolution as it now stands.  Senator Ticer can still make her amendment.  Any action the Board takes will not impact an amendment to this Senate Bill.  This resolution before the Board is solely stating that the Board does not support the language as written in SB564.  The financial impact on Wise County is over $7.3 million in coal severance money if this bill passes. 

There was some discussion on the agenda not being open for public expression for the citizens to view their comments on the agenda items.

Chairman Rivers asked for a vote on the substitute motion to table this item for further information.

Aye-    Steve Bates      Nay-    Virginia Meador
            Robby Robbins                        Bob Adkins
            Fred Luntsford             Ronnie Shortt
                                                Dana Kilgore
                                                J. H. Rivers     
Motion failed.

The vote on the main motion to approve the resolution opposing SB564 is as follows:

Aye-    Ronnie Shortt                           Abstain – Fred Luntsford (For lack of information)
            Robby Robbins
            Bob Adkins
            Virginia Meador
            Dana Kilgore
            J. H. Rivers
            Steve Bates – (if this resolution includes deep mining)

Motion carried.

RESOLUTION #             2010

(Said resolution is on file in the County Administrator’s Office)

 

IN RE:  PSA MORAL OBLIGATION DOCUMENTS

Attorney Mullins explained that the Moral Obligation Agreement says that the County agrees that in the event there is a financial short fall of the PSA the County will consider placing that loan amount in the County’s budget.

IN RE:  RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING EXECUTION OF SUPPORT AGREEMENT

Attorney Mullins explained that the resolution authorizes the execution of the Support Agreement which provides for Wise County’s moral obligation to make certain appropriations with respect to a water and sewer revenue bond of the Wise County PSA.

PSA Director Danny Buchanan explained that there is a deadline, as of tomorrow, that these documents must be executed and fax to the Bond Counsel first thing in the morning.

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Steve Bates, to approve the PSA Moral Obligations documents as presented.  The motion was unanimously approved.

RESOLUTION # __________________2010

(Said resolution is on file in the County Administrator’s Office)

IN RE:  RESOLUTION – HB849 – ATV’S

Administrator Scott read the proposed resolution stating that this is in support of the Southwest Region Recreation Authority which promotes adventure tourism.

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Ronnie Shortt, to approve the resolution as presented.  The motion was unanimously approved.

RESOLUTION #                   2010

(Said resolution is on file in the County Administrator’s Office)

IN RE:  BOARD MEETING DATE CHANGE

A motion was made by Dana Kilgore, seconded by Ronnie Shortt, to change the February  11, 2010 Board meeting to Monday, February 22, 2010 at 6:00 in the Board of Supervisors meeting room.  The motion was unanimously approved.

ADJOURN

A motion was made by Fred Luntsford, seconded by Dana Kilgore, to adjourn the meeting.  The motion was unanimously approved.

ATTEST:                                                         WISE COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

 

___________________________________         ______________________________________
Shannon C. Scott, Clerk                                               J. H. Rivers, Chairman 

 

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