Commission Meeting Minutes -Thursday, March 18, 2021

For your consideration, please read the minutes from the Commission Meeting held on Thursday, March 18, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. in the Commission Meeting Room.

Commission Meeting Minutes 3-18-21 with Attachments

To read the minutes, please open or download the pdf from the link above, or you may see more below.

Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water and Sewer Commission

1703 Gloucester Street, Brunswick, GA 31520

Thursday, March 18, 2021 at 2:00 PM 

COMMISSION MINUTES

PRESENT:                             

G. Ben Turnipseed, Chairman

Bob Duncan, Vice-Chairman

Charles Cook, Commissioner

Cornell L. Harvey, Commissioner

Wayne Neal, Commissioner

Tripp Stephens, Commissioner

Chad Strickland, Commissioner 

ALSO PRESENT:                  

Andrew Burroughs, Executive Director

Charlie Dorminy, HBS Legal Counsel

LaDonnah Roberts, Deputy Executive Director

Todd Kline, Director of Engineering

Jay Sellers, Director of Administration

Frances Wilson, Senior Accountant

Janice Meridith, Exec. Commission Administrator

MEDIA PRESENT:               

Taylor Cooper, The Brunswick News

Chairman Turnipseed called the meeting to order at 2:00 PM.

Commissioner Neal provided the invocation and Commissioner Cook led the Pledge of Allegiance. 

PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD

Chairman Turnipseed opened the public comment period.

Mr. Donald M. Elliott – SPLOST – Mr. Elliott expressed his disappointment that SPLOST did not pass, and said that JWSC had a lot of good projects on there.  He commented that SPLOST was a way of providing infrastructure for the underserved in the County and for the Dunbar Creek WPCF renovation.  Mr. Elliott said he thought the Commission should consider borrowing funds to accomplish the Dunbar Creek renovation and any other restore and renew projects that require immediate effort.  The JWSC should raise rates as necessary to cover the principal and interest of the payments on the loan.  He also mentioned that the social media discussions on the SPLOST tended to indicate that there is not a lot of information out in the general public’s knowledge of what JWSC has accomplished and where JWSC is going with those accomplishments.  He stated that he thought that every 6 months JWSC should publish or ask the newspapers to publish what JWSC has accomplished during the past 6 months, and what is intended to be accomplished during the next 6 months so that more of the general public will  know what JWSC is doing and working on.  Mr. Elliott thanked the Commission.

There being no additional citizens for public comment, Chairman Turnipseed closed the public comment period. 

EMPLOYEE RECOGNITION

            David Grantham, Water Distribution System Operator and Laboratory Analyst Certificate

Mr. Burroughs introduced David Grantham and provided that Mr. Grantham is the SCADA System Administrator for JWSC.  He was previously a Water System Operator, however now Mr. Grantham is certified to work on both sides of the system.  Commissioner Harvey congratulated Mr. Grantham for his efforts toward obtaining his two certifications and for being a part of the JWSC staff.  Commissioner Harvey also advised that Mr. Grantham’s best is always expected from him as a part of the organization.  Commissioner Harvey then read the statement on the certificate as presented to Mr. Grantham.  Commissioner Harvey expressed his appreciation and congratulations to Mr. Grantham.  

COMMITTEE UPDATES

Facilities Committee – Chairman Turnipseed

Chairman Turnipseed reported that the Facilities Committee had met on the previous day at 1:00 p.m.  The Chairman stated that there were 4 easements and 1 piece of infrastructure dedicated to JWSC, and those will be presented to the full Commission today.  The Committee reviewed the draft form of the Proposed Capital Projects Plan.  All of the water pollution control facilities are operating very well and within permit.  The Project Report included good photos and information on the 21 projects JWSC currently has underway. 

Finance Committee – Commissioner Duncan

Committee Chairman Duncan reported that the Finance Committee meeting was held on the previous day at 3:00 p.m. There were two items approved to be forwarded to the full Board for consideration.  Those were the Property & Liability Insurance Renewal and Surplus Inventory.  The draft of the Proposed Annual Budget for Fiscal Year 2022 was reviewed and discussed.  The financial statement was reviewed and JWSC is where it had planned to be. The Committee also had discussion on how to raise funds now without the SPLOST, and how to pay back those funds.  Financing debt will be discussed in more detail at the next Committee meeting.  

APPROVAL

  1. JWSC Property and Liability Insurance Renewal – Fred McGinty, McGinty Gordon

Mr. McGinty presented the proposal for the renewal of the JWSC Property and Liability Insurance.  He briefly reviewed the details on the current industry conditions, proposals received, coverage categories, insurers, and final proposed renewal package as presented to the Finance Committee on the previous day.

Commissioner Duncan made a motion seconded by Commissioner Stephens to move that the Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water and Sewer Commission approve insurance renewal rates for each coverage category and insurer as listed in the attached memo provided by staff.  Motion carried 7-0-0.

  1. Master Plan Update Approval – Angela Bryan & Laura Constantino, Four Waters Engineering

Angela Bryan and Laura Constantino from Four Waters Engineering, along with Tony Hairston from Raftelis Financial, presented the Master Plan Update to the full Commission for final approval.  They had first presented the Master Plan Update Draft to the JWSC at a Special Called Facilities Committee Meeting on Wednesday, February 17, 2021 at 10:00 a.m.  Ms. Bryan and Ms. Constantino reviewed the details contained in the Master Plan Update with the Commissioners.  Mr. Hairston then reviewed and discussed the financial aspects and Rate Analysis Model with the Commissioners.

Commissioner Duncan made a motion seconded by Commissioner Cook to move that the Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water and Sewer Commission approve the 2020 Master Plan Update as presented.

Commissioner Duncan commented that if the Commissioners vote for this Plan, it is a “Way Forward.”  Our endorsement tells the staff to execute the Plan to benefit our customers and community.  We have identified the priorities and we know how much funding is going to be required.  We have the model that Tony shared with us which allows considering various scenarios in looking at Rate Analysis and the future effects of raising or not raising rates.  It also allows us to make decisions on borrowing money, for example, to fund the $15M list that we had on the failed SPLOST project list.  Commissioner Duncan also commented on JWSC’s strong system and treatment capacities with regard to future high dollar investments.

Commissioner Stephens commented that this is a great Plan, is well put together, and is a great guide and tool for JWSC to have.  He then questioned if “approve” was the correct word to use in the motion, or if endorse was better to use since they are endorsing that they support the Plan.  The word “approve” can be misinterpreted as granting approval to spend $191M.  Commissioner Stephens suggested amending the motion from “approve” to “endorse.”

Commissioner Harvey agreed that this is a good Plan, and is a good assessment of our facilities, of our program moving forward, and advising JWSC on how to continue to get to the next level.  He added that he agreed with Commissioner Stephens in that this is a living document that can be changed as we go, it is fluid.

Commissioner Stephens made a motion seconded by Commissioner Neal to move to amend the motion by changing the word “approve” to “accept”.  Motion carried 7-0-0.

Commissioner Stephens made a motion seconded by Commissioner Strickland to move that the Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water and Sewer Commission accept the 2020 Master Plan Update as presented.  Motion carried 7-0-0. 

  1. Minutes from the February 18, 2021 Regular Commission Meeting

Commissioner Duncan made a motion seconded by Commissioner Harvey to approve the minutes from the February 18, 2021 Regular Commission Meeting.  Motion carried 5-0-2.  (Commissioners Neal and Stephens were not in the room at the time of the vote.) 

  1. Surplus Inventory – A. Burroughs

Mr. Burroughs presented the request to declare 18 unused meters as surplus inventory to be sold in a manner most beneficial to the JWSC.  These Metron meters are no longer of use to the JWSC and are considered obsolete inventory.  This item was presented to the Finance Committee on the previous day and was approved to forward to the full Commission.

Commissioner Cook made a motion seconded by Commissioner Duncan to move that the Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water and Sewer Commission approve the above listed items as surplus to be disposed of in a manner most beneficial to the JWSC.  Motion carried 5-0-2.  (Commissioners Neal and Stephens were not in the room for the vote.)

  1. Easement(s) and Infrastructure Dedications – T. Kline
  • 500 Block of Longview – Three (3) Easements
  • Captain’s Cove – Easement and Infrastructure

Mr. Kline presented the Easement and Infrastructure Dedications to the full Commission by recommendation from the Facilities Committee on the previous day.  Three easements were dedicated by the property owners of #503, 507 and 509 Longview Road on St. Simons Island in order for JWSC to locate, construct, install, and subsequently maintain or replace water or sewer lines.  Those residents have expressed their desire to become JWSC customers.  The owner of Captain’s Cove dedicated infrastructure as public, accompanied by a water/sewer easement.

Commissioner Duncan made a motion seconded by Commissioner Harvey to move that the Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water and Sewer Commission approve the above described easements and dedication of public infrastructure for ownership, operation, and maintenance.  Motion carried 7-0-0.

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S UPDATE

Mr. Burroughs announced that JWSC’s Asset Management Manager, Ellis Zettler, will be presenting at a virtual Cityworks Converge Conference at national level on March 23, 2021.  Mr. Burroughs also informed the Commissioners that Hurricane Tabletop Exercises will be held on March, 31st, and requested the Commissioners to advise by Friday, March 26th if they plan to attend.

CHAIRMAN’S UPDATE

Chairman Turnipseed commended the staff on assisting Four Waters Engineering on the Master Plan Update.  He also thanked the Commissioners who attended the Special Called Facilities Committee Meeting for the presentation of the Master Plan Update Draft.

EXECUTIVE SESSION

There was no Executive Session.

There being no additional business to bring before the Commission, Chairman Turnipseed adjourned the meeting at 3:45 p.m.