CHIPPEWA COUNTY
BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

Regular Session
March 10, 2014

The Chippewa County Board of Commissioners met in regular session on Monday, March 10, 2014 at 4:00 p.m. in the 91st District Courtroom of the Chippewa County Building.

Present:   Commissioners Don Cooper, George Kinsella, Don McLean, Ted Postula and Chairman Scott   
Shackleton

Absent:    None

Also Present:   Jim and Michelle Traynor, Bud Willis, John Willis, Scott Brand, Sheriff Robert Savoie, Jim Smith, Robert Smith, Michael Kujat, Joann Barry, Wayne Barey, Lynn Farnquist, Register of Deeds/Equalization Director Sharon Kennedy, Jesse Knoll, Tim McKee, Cal Lofdahl, Chippewa County Treasurer Marjorie Hank, Administrator Jim German and Cathy Maleport, Clerk.

ADDITIONS AND DELETIONS TO THE AGENDA

It was moved by Commissioner Kinsella, seconded by Commissioner McLean, to add to the agenda the Health Department request regarding travel.

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

CORRESPONDENCE RECEIVED IN THE CLERK’S OFFICE

It was moved by Commissioner Postula, seconded by Commissioner Cooper, to acknowledge the correspondence received in the Clerk’s Office and, if necessary, forward to the appropriate committee.

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

APPROVAL OF COUNTY BOARD MINUTES

It was moved by Commissioner McLean, seconded by Commissioner Kinsella, to approve the regular County Board meeting minutes of February 10, 2014, as presented. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

It was moved by Commissioner McLean, seconded by Commissioner Postula, to approve the Rural Development Grant Public Hearing meeting minutes of  February 10, 2014,  as presented. On a voice vote, the motion carried. 

PUBLIC COMMENTS 

  • Sharon Kennedy, Register of Deeds and Equalization Director together with Marjorie Hank, Chippewa County Treasurer provided additional information for the Commissioners to consider in support why the Fire Protection Renewal Millage should be presented on the August Primary ballot, rather than the November General ballot.
  • Jesse Knoll, resident of Sugar Island, expressed his concerns with the extreme ice problems the Sugar Island residents are experiencing, and his displeasure, with the Ferry Services.
  • John Willis, resident of Sugar Island, also expressed his disapproval of the ice conditions the residents of Sugar Island are dealing with.  He stated, “Why is our government allowing this tanker to come up and putting people’s lives at risk? This Commission should write a resolution/letter to the Governor’s office to make sure this does not happen again.”
  • Chuck Moser, Eastern Upper Peninsula Transportation Authority announced  “The safety and well-being of the island residents is #1 on our list,” he further explained, that that the vessel was not made for these extreme conditions which can force it to remain docked until the river clears.  
  • Mike Kujat, resident of Sugar Island, expressed his displeasure with the employees of the ferry. He indicated, there should be some kind of communications when something like this happens.
  • Ed DeTour, on behalf of Northern Transitions, expressed his concerns with the discussion amongst the Board members of possibly putting Chippewa County Recycling out for bids.  He asked the Commission to consider the following  services they provide when future discussions come up, and referenced the following: Employment for people with barriers; good services for the community; and that they are interrelated with other services within the county.
  • Bud Willis, Sugar Island Township resident, expressed his concerns with the extreme ice conditions they are currently experiencing and said, “If we can spend millions of dollars to keep the shipping channels open, we can use some of that, to make ferries that will cut through the ice.”
  • Jim Smith, owner of Smith Sanitation, indicated the county could save a substantial amount of money by changing the format, and was interested in bidding for the recycling project, should the county opt to go in that direction. He stated, “I don’t want to take anything away from Northern Transitions they’ve done a fine job.” He noted that there were so many unanswered questions and explained that what he is proposing, is a far better program, for the townships.
  • Chuck Moser added that if Northern Transitions were to no longer have the recycling program, they are certain that there would be a negative impact to EUPTA, in regards to levels of services that they provide to NTI. EUPTA would realize a loss of $13,338 per year (daily fees) with an additional $5,200 lost in direct bus fees for a total of $18,538. Another approximate loss to EUPTA of $20,000 would very likely occur, within a short period of time after the recycling program closed and referenced a total loss to EUPTA of approximately $41,638 (conservative estimate)
  • Jim Hendricks, speaking on behalf of the Knights of Columbus, noted that the proposed change would have an adverse-effect. He went on to say that many people have worked with Northern Transitions over the years and essentially, used that position, as a springboard to get full-time employment at other places in the community.  He urged the Commission to look very closely at this, and asked them to look beyond any financial or monetary aspects. (See attached provided letter)  
  • Barb ?, Board member of Northern Transitions,   noted that Northern Transitions is one of the most transparent organizations you will find.
  • Jesse Knoll noted that he had an experience recently with the recycling center and that the employees as Northern Transitions are doing a wonderful job.
  • Lynn Farnquist echoed those sentiments; she stated, “Northern Transitions do a fantastic job and to imply they are keeping something hidden as far as finances go, is simply ridiculous.”
  • Joan Barry added, “I love what it does for our community; the millage for recycling is not a given for me; I support it because of what it does for these folks. My millage vote, is for Northern Transitions because of its mission.”
  • Cal Lofdahl, manager of the Chippewa County Recycling, pointed out benefits of the program and added “Let’s not send 35 jobs to Wisconsin.”
  • Joel Krupa noted that the oversight at Northern Transitions is very,  very high; “It is highly transparent.”

Declaring the public comments period closed at 4:49 p.m. Chairman Shackleton suggested that they move agenda item 10 up, as it relates to this subject matter; having no objections he called upon Commissioner McLean to offer the  Committee report.

Building Grounds and Jail, Legislative and Natural Resources and
Information Technology Committee
Commissioner McLean – February 27, 2014

Having no items that were to be voted on, it was moved by Commissioner McLean, seconded by Commissioner Postula, to accept the Building Grounds and Jail, Legislative and Natural Resources and Information Technology Committee meeting minutes of February 27, 2014. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Chairman Shackleton, addressing the recycling issue, explained that this is nothing that the County Board said we’re unhappy or we’re looking for alternatives. He explained,   Mr. Smith approached the County and said this is something he, was interested in. We have a responsibility to listen to him and to weigh what he has to say. He went on the say, “Mr. Smith is by in no means the bad guy. I give him a lot of credit, he’s a successful small business man that took on one of the largest waste haulers in the country, and by all accounts is providing a great service in this county.  I give Mr. Smith a lot of credit for what he is doing, and I don’t fault him for looking at other opportunities.  That being said, if the county was to consider such a thing, they’re a lot of things to consider. The first of which, is that the people of this county, have been asked to pay a millage for recycling. The service that is offered is widely appreciated and approved of.  He also referenced what would happen, if the private vendor decides in a couple years it’s not profitable and they do not want to do it anymore; these are things we have to weigh and consider. He indicated “It’s going to be difficult to convince me  that this is a good idea; we know what we have, we have a good operation, it is very transparent, and very well run.”

Commissioner Kinsella added, “The idea of NTI changing what they’re doing in the community is foreign to me, that being said, recycling is another matter.”  He asked the Commission to listen and gather the facts so they can make an informed decision as his township supervisor has asked him to take a hard look at this.  

Commissioner Cooper added, “Some things you can’t look at the bottom line on,” noting the joint effort of recycling and Northern Transitions is working, he said,  “We’ve got a good thing going there; you cannot separate the two”   Further noting all the things that spin off such as  training, transportation, and the independence that some folks obtain.

Commissioner Cooper moved to continue their services with Northern Transitions with at least the next four years, or the extent of the next millage.

Chairman Shackleton declared the motion died for lack of support.

Commissioner Postula added, “Do we want to hear his proposal or not. That is a decision we have to make.”

Commissioner McLean noted that we do have a good program here, and in defense of Mr. Smith, he said he was not going to put together a financial proposal and put it forward here, because any competitor that would be interested in bidding against him, would have all that information. As a business man he was not willing to do that. He went on to say, “I’m in support of what we’re doing right now.  I’m a strong believer in the jobs it creates and the service we provide here for people who have barriers to employment.”

Chairman Shackleton declared a 5 minute recess at 5:14 p.m.

The Chippewa County Board of Commissioners reconvened and Chairman Shackleton declared the meeting back in order at 5:20 p.m.

Old Business

  • Allocation Board

It was moved by Commissioner Kinsella, seconded by Commissioner McLean, to accept the application of Ronald Meister, and to place him on the Allocation Board.  Commissioner Shackleton indicated that they’re happy to have his services,   that he is more than qualified, and he’s provided terrific jobs for the county in the past,  in various positions. A discussion followed having noted that Mr. Meister was the only applicant.

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Appointment to Department of Veterans Affairs

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner Kinsella, to re-appoint Brooks Partridge to the Veteran’s Affairs Board for a four- year term. A discussion followed. It was noted, that the County Board appoints the members to the Chippewa County Veteran’s Affairs Board and the Veteran’s Affairs Board has a right to employ their counselor. The Veteran’s Affairs Counselor accounts to that Board.

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

MSHDA ~ Approve the Targeting County Allocation Program

Chairman Shackleton explained this is regarding the funds that are laid out for MSHDA for rehabilitation of homes, as they have a new requirement, that locally we have a targeted community. This was met by the committee, and at this point, we just need to approve it at the County Board level.

It was moved by Commissioner McLean, seconded by Commissioner Postula, to approve the recommendation.

On a voice vote, the motion carried

Administrator’s Report – Given for informational purposes only ~ No action items.

Commissioner Shackleton referenced Sugar Island residents’ concerns with emergencies and asked Mr. McKee if they have a plan in place, in the event a heart attack occurs on Sugar Island.

Mr. McKee noted that they have a plan that consists of five different elements and listed the following five options:

  • Utilize the ferry; the ferry will run for emergencies provided it doesn’t interfere with the Captain’s rules.

2)  Call the US Coast Guard to see if they have a vessel available.
3)  Sheriff’s Dept. Hover Craft ~ depending on the ice conditions the hover craft may or may
not work.
4) Coast Guard Helicopter
5) RCMP’s Hovercraft to come across through the North Channel.

An extensive discussion continued concerning ice breaking and the problems it creates.

Standing Committee Reports:

Finance, Claims and Accounts Committee 
Commissioner Cooper – February 6, 2014

AGENDA ITEMS

MSU Extension Services Agreement – FY2014

The Committee received and reviewed the MSU Extension Services Agreement for the FY 2014 Work Plan which has been budgeted for $42,556.00 and covers the period January 2014 to December 2014, and will be paid quarterly to MSUE.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner McLean, to approve and authorize signature for the Agreement for Extension Services provided by Michigan State University to Chippewa County in the amount of $42,556.00, and for the period of January 2014 thru December 2014.

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Ambulance and Fire Protection Millage Renewal

The Committee reviewed the language of the Chippewa County – Ambulance and Fire Protection Proposition Millage Renewal, as approved by the OES/9-1-1 Board of Directors. A discussion followed regarding the placement of the ballot issue on the primary or general election ballot.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, to approve the millage language for the .4275 mills and to change the language to indicate the November election for the four year renewal, being 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.

Chairman Shackleton declared the motion died for lack of support.

It was moved by Commissioner McLean, seconded by Commissioner Kinsella, to move forward with the millage, but have it placed on the August Primary ballot as opposed to the November ballot. A discussion followed, which included how it effects budgeting and timeliness in getting bills out, as well as, Equalization.

On a voice vote, the motion carried unanimously.

Motorola Service Contract

The Committee reviewed the service agreement renewal for Chippewa County Emergency Services with Motorola Solutions. It is a five year contract in the amount of $100,000.20, annual cost of $20,000.04, which is a savings from current annual cost $21,785.76. This agreement covers the Motorola dispatch console equipment and Nice IP Radio recorder interface.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner Kinsella, to approve the Motorola Solutions Agreement with Chippewa County Emergency Services for a five-year service agreement at the price of $100,000.20 (20,000.04 annually).

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Medical Examiner Wage Request
The CCHD Board of Health requested a budget item verification regarding the medical examiner’s wage increase for FY2014.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper , seconded by Commissioner  Kinsella , to authorize Administrator German to verify with the  Board of Health, that the Medical Examiner wage increase was approved during the FY2014 budget process. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

CCHD Request for Board Member to waive their Per Diem

The CCHD Board of Health also sought guidance regarding a BOH member requesting to not receive compensation for their services. Discussion followed with past examples of prior Board/Committee members who have not accepted various forms of compensation, including payment of per diems.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner McLean, to authorize the CCHD Board member request to waive their per diem payment, and to have the Board of Health pass a motion supporting the payment waiver at their next meeting. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

ImageSoft Final Bill

The final bill was presented to the Committee for ImageSoft in the amount $15,578.02.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner McLean, to approve the final payment of ImageSoft in the amount of $15,578.02. A discussion followed.

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Approval of bids for Ten Desktops

The bids summary to purchase ten (10) desktop computers was presented. Ten bids were received, with only six meeting bid specifications; one bid was late and not opened. The low bid was from Y&S Technologies in the amount of $10,531.80.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner Kinsella, to approve the low bid to purchase ten (10) desktop computers from Y&S Technologies in the amount of $10,531.80.

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

Firearms RFQ for Sheriff’s Department

The RFQ was presented for release to purchase twenty-four (24) Sheriff Office Duty Firearms. The request came from Sheriff Robert Savoie.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner Postula, to approve the RFQ release to purchase twenty-four (24) firearms for the Sheriff’s Department. It was noted,  that this is a request for quotes. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

RFQ – Sheriff Department Vehicle

The Committee received and reviewed the RFQ to purchase one Sheriff Department Vehicle, release and authorization for the Administrator to have authorization to approve the low bid at bid opening was sought, due to potential ordering issues after April 1, 2014.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner Kinsella, to the RFQ release to purchase one Sheriff’s Department vehicle and to authorize the Administrator to approve the low bid at bid opening. A brief discussion followed. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

FINANCE

Claims and Accounts
The Committee reviewed the bills and payroll presented for approval.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner McLean, to recommend the approval of the general claims totaling $193,592.04, other fund claims of $240,686.17, payroll of $432,557.05, and Health Department claims of $518,807.50,    total claims of $1,385,642.76 and vouchers H-1 through H-241. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner McLean, to move ahead with a new law enforcement drug task force. On a voice vote, the motion carried.

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper, seconded by Commissioner Postula, to accept the Finance Claims and Accounts Committee meeting minutes of March 6, 2014, as presented.

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

New Business

Support Graymont/DNR Resolution #2014-1 from EUP Regional Planning & Development

It was moved by Commissioner Cooper to table this motion until they looked further into it, echoing as Chairman Shackleton stated, this has not been to a Committee.

Chairman Shackleton declared the motion died for lack of support and noted that he would prefer to see the Board, not take action, than for it to fail.  He did not believe they should take a position on it as he believed it should be between Mackinac County and the State of Michigan.

It was moved by Commissioner, McLean seconded by Commissioner Kinsella,   to accept the Graymont/DNR Resolution as presented below: A discussion continued.

GRAYMONT/DNR RESOLUTION - #2014-1

Whereas, the Eastern U.P. Regional Planning & Development Commission supports the potential land transaction proposal submitted by Graymont to obtain 13,000 acres for limestone mining operations in western Mackinac, southern Luce and southwestern Chippewa Counties;

Whereas, the Commissioner supports the creation of year round, full time, higher wage employment opportunities and the retention of industries that might benefit from spin off jobs due to this development;

Whereas, the Commission encourages the DNR to carefully review development plans to ensure that stakeholders, such as the Wilwinn Lodge in Trout Lake and other impacted stakeholders in Garfield, Hendricks, Hudson, Pentland and Trout Lake Townships are mitigated from significant impacts as a result of this proposal;

Whereas, the Commission entrusts the Department of Natural Resources, Department of Environmental Quality, Environmental Protection Agency and any other State of Federal Agency with overseeing this proposal and it s potential development in accordance with all State and Federal laws to protect the environment in this area and ensure that reclamation and restoration efforts are mandated and implemented;

Whereas, the Commission recognizes the significant economic disadvantages and distresses placed upon Hendricks and Hudson Townships in the County of Mackinac, with specific regards to high unemployment, lack of job opportunities and severe lack of development options to improve their local economic conditions;

Be it resolved, that the Easter U.P. Regional Planning & Development Commission urges the Michigan DNR to approve the land transaction proposal submitted by Graymont for the aforementioned areas in the Eastern UP:

Therefore be it resolved that, at the regular quarterly board meeting of the Eastern U.P. Regional Planning Y Development Commission on Wednesday, January 22, 2014 this resolution was moved by Commissioner Ford, supported by Commissioner Kinsella, to adopt this resolution of support.

A roll call vote was taken as follows:

Yeas: Commissioners Kinsella, McLean and Postula

Nays: Commissioner Cooper and Chairman Shackleton.

THE RESOLUTION WAS DECLARED ADOPTED.

Resolutions for EDC Retirements

  • Kathy Noel
  • Paula Adams
  • Pat Benoit
  • Earl Kay

It was suggested to take them all together, having no objections, it was moved by Commissioner Postula, seconded by Commissioner Kinsella  to approve the four EDC Retirement  resolutions as follows:
           

  • Resolution 14-04  – Special Tribute Kathy Noel

SPECIAL TRIBUTE
14-04
Kathy Noel

Let It Be Known, that it is with great pride that the Chippewa County Board of
Commissioners join together with the employees and residents of Chippewa
County, to express their wish of good health and happiness upon her retirement
from the Chippewa County Economic Corporation.

Kathy Noel has served the citizens of Chippewa County in a manner above
reproach, and for this we extend our thanks. Kathy Noel has provided
outstanding service to thousands of individuals and Businesses for almost
thirty-five years.

Kathy Noel has taken personal price in her work with Chippewa County and
has worked hard to continue the improvements of the EDC and its
infrastructure.

Kathy Noel through her productive suggestions, her high performance standards,
Her kind friendship, her professionalism, her enthusiasm, and her insight to
Her fellow workers and citizens place her in the highest of categories.

Kathy Noel has brought recognition to herself, the community and Chippewa
County Economic Development Corporation. The Chippewa County Board
of Commissioners, on behalf of the residents of Chippewa County, extends
their appreciation to a fellow official, friend and adviser who is thoughtful,
caring, involved, dedicated and who made a favorable impact on the
betterment of life and well being in Chippewa County.

IN SPECIAL TRIBUTE, therefore upon her retirement from the EDC, this
document is signed and dedicated to honor Kathy Noel, for her countless
contributions. For her untiring efforts in improving the prosperity of the
citizens of the County, we join together to extend to Kathy Noel a gracious
thank you for  a job well done.

A roll call vote was taken as follows:

Yeas:   Commissioner Cooper, Kinsella, McLean, Postula and Chairman Shackleton
Nays:   None

THE RESOLUTION WAS DECLARED ADOPTED.

  • Resolution 14-05 – Special Tribute to Paula Adams

RESOLUTION # 14-05

SPECIAL TRIBUTE TO PAULA ADAMS

LET It Be Known, that it is with geat pride that the Chippewa County Board of
Commissioners join together with the employees and residents of Chippewa
County, to express their appreciation for Paula Adams upon her retirement.

Paula Adams has served the citizens of Chippewa County through her commitment
of her duties, and for this we extend our thanks. Paul Adams has provided exceptional service to numerous individuals for over thirty years.

Paula Adams has taken personal pride in her work with Chippewa County’s
Economic Development Corporation serving in a number of Positions:
Corporate Treasurer, Chief Financial Officer, Chief Operations Officer and
Human Resource Officer.

Paula Adams through her high performance standards, her kind friendship, her
Effectiveness, her passion, and her insight to her fellow workers and citizens
Place her in the utmost of respect.

IN SPECIAL TRIBUTE, therefore upon her retirement from Chippewa County Economic & Development Corporation, this document is signed and dedicated to honor Paula Adams, for her countless contributions to Chippewa County, and the
Business Community she served so well. For her untiring efforts in improving
jobs to the citizens of this County, we join together to extend to Paula Adams
a gracious thank you for a job well done.

A roll call vote was taken as follows:

Yeas:    Commissioner Cooper, Kinsella, McLean, Postula and Chairman Shackleton
Nays:   None

THE RESOLUTION WAS DECLARED ADOPTED.

Resolution 14-06 – Special Tribute to Pat Benoit

Resolution In Appreciation And Special Recognition
OF PATRICIA (PAT) BENOIT
Resolution No. 14-06

The appreciation of the Chippewa County Board of Commissioners, the Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation and the residents of Chippewa County, is extended to PAT BENOIT, for:

Her dedicated service at the Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation, since 1989.

Her untiring efforts and expertise for the well-being of the citizens of
Chippewa County.

Her constant and consistent work serving as the Vice President for Administration, Chair of the EDC’s  Finance Committee, a member of EDC Executive Committee and as the Vice Chair of the EDC Board of Directors for which she exhibited personal integrity and a high level of professionalism.

Her deep personal commitment, not only to her work on behalf of the Economic Development Corporation and the County, but also her family, friends and co-workers.

It is altogether fitting and proper that the Chippewa County Board of Commissioners should honor PAT BENOIT, for her years of service and dedication to Chippewa County

Upon her departure, our wish for PAT BENOIT that the Chippewa County Board of Commissioners respectfully dedicate this document to honor and
thank PAT BENOIT for her twenty-five years of public service and particularly for her work with Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation.

A roll call vote was taken as follows:

Yeas:    Commissioner Cooper, Kinsella, McLean, Postula and Chairman Shackleton
Nays:   None

THE RESOLUTION WAS DECLARED ADOPTED.       

Resolution 14-07 – Special Tribute to Earl Kay 

SPECIAL RECOGNITION
RESOLUTION
14-07

Earl Kay

WHEREAS, Earl Kay has served as a member of the Board of Directors of
The  Economic Development Corporation of Chippewa County (EDC)
since 1991,          and
 
WHEREAS, Earl Kay served the residents of Chippewa County for over
Eighteen  years; and

WHEREAS, Earl Kay served the Vice President for Special Projects during
the year 1992, and on the EDC’s Executive Committee during the year 1993,
and

WHEREAS, Earl Kay has served as the EDC Board Chair for twenty years,
and

WHEREAS, Earl Kay  has successfully guided the corporation through
challenges during his tenure, by employing common sense and humor,
and

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, as follows: That the Chippewa
County   Board of Commissioners respectfully dedicates this document to
honor and thank Earl Kay for his many years of public service and particularly
for his work with the Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation.

A roll call vote was taken as follows.

Yeas:    Commissioner Cooper, Kinsella, McLean, Postula and Chairman Shackleton
Nays:   None

THE RESOLUTION WAS DECLARED ADOPTED.

Health Department Travel Request (added to agenda)

It was moved by Commissioner Kinsella, seconded by Commissioner Postula, that the  Chippewa County Health Department travel request be approved. A discussion followed regarding the process such a request should be submitted.

On a voice vote, the motion carried.

COMMISSIONERS COMMENTS

  • None

Having completed the agenda items, it was moved by Commissioner Kinsella, seconded by Commissioner Postula, that the Board adjourns. On a voice vote, the motion carried and the Board adjourned at 6:15 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Catherine C. Maleport, Clerk                                          

Scott Shackleton, Chairman