Commission Minutes – November 20, 2014
For your consideration, please review the minutes for the Commission Meeting from November 20, 2014:
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PRESENT: Dale Provenzano, Chairman
Thomas A. Boland, Commissioner
John A. Cason, III, City Commissioner
Sandra J. Dean, Commissioner
Donald M. Elliott, Commissioner
David H. Ford, Commissioner
Ronald E. Perry, Commissioner
ALSO PRESENT: Stephen A. Swan, Executive Director
John D. Donaghy, Director of Administration
Desiree E. Watson, JWSC Attorney
Barbara Rogers, JWSC Clerk
Chairman Provenzano called the meeting to order and Commissioner Perry provided the invocation. Commissioner Ford led the pledge.
PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD
Chairman Provenzano recognized the following individual to address the Commission:
1. Bill Powell, Brunswick, GA. Mr. Powell stated he wished to speak again about Bond refinancing. By refinancing the bond approximately $275,000 a year could be saved on debt service. This would be a considerable benefit to customers.
Mr. Powell stated he still has not seen the Rate Resolution corrected on the debt service as has been changed by the REU audit. And that the REU per account are not showing on the customer’s bills.
There being no additional individuals that wished to address the Commission, Chairman Provenzano closed the Public Comment Period.
Commissioner Dean made a motion seconded by Commissioner Elliott to add changing the dates for the January 2015 meetings as item 9 to the Approval Agenda. Motion carried 7-0-0.
Commissioner Perry made a motion seconded by Commissioner Elliott to move item 3 on the Discussion Agenda to item 10 on the Approval Agenda. Motion carried 7-0-0.
Communications & Customer Service – Commissioner Dean
Commissioner Dean stated no report at this time.
Economic Development – Chairman Provenzano
Chairman Provenzano stated no report at this time.
Facilities – Commissioner Perry
Commissioner Perry stated all Facilities Committee items are on today’s agenda.
Finance – Commissioner Elliott
Commissioner Elliott stated the Committee had started work on the RFP for Legal Services. Legal Services will be divided into three separate solicitations. Mrs. Watson reviewed the status on the property work. Commissioner Elliott stated that the JWSC will be looking at insurance coverage on the litigation work and the Committee will be recommending a month to month agreement at the December Commission meeting.
Mr. Donaghy stated he will email the October financials.
Human Resources – Commissioner Cason
Commissioner Cason reviewed the items on the Human Resource Committee’s agenda and stated several were on today’s agenda.
Legislative – Chairman Provenzano
Chairman Provenzano stated their items will be moving forward to the City and County.
1. Minutes of the November 6, 2014 regular meeting, (subject to any necessary changes). – B. Rogers
Commissioner Perry made a motion seconded by Commissioner Cason to approve the minutes of the November 6, 2014 meeting. Motion carried 7-0-0.
2. Minutes of the November 6, 2014 executive session, (subject to any necessary changes). – B. Rogers
Commissioner Perry made a motion seconded by Commissioner Cason to approve the minutes of the November 6, 2014 executive session. Motion carried 7-0-0.
3. Amendment to the Human Resources Standards of Practice – Vacation Hour Carryover – J. Donaghy
Mr. Donaghy stated that currently employees can carry over 400 hours of unused vacation annually. The values of this unused vacation time is recorded as a current liability. As of June 30, 2014 the amount of unused vacation time in excess of 160 hours was $149,598. The Human Resource Committee recommends that the Human Resource Standard of Practice be amended to reduce the number of vacation hours allowed to be carried over each year from 400 to 160.
Commissioner Ford made a motion seconded by Commissioner Boland to adopt the amendment to Article 4, Section 4.2, Annual Leave, of the Brunswick-Glynn County Joint Water and Sewer Commission Human Resource Standards of Practice as attached, Motion carried 7-0-0.
4. Acceptance of the June 30, 2014 Audit Report – J. Donaghy
Mr. Donaghy stated Karp, Ronning & Tindol, Certified Public Accountants, has issued their unqualified report for fiscal year June 30, 2014. The Finance committee has reviewed the audit report and recommends that the JWSC accept the audited financial report and authorize its release to the public and reporting agencies.
Commissioner Elliott made a motion seconded by Commissioner Boland to accept the audited financial report for the June 30, 2014 fiscal year and authorize its release to the public and reporting agencies. Motion carried 7-0-0.
5. Intergovernmental Agreement with Glynn County to Provide Fiber Optic – J. Donaghy
Mr. Donaghy explained that currently the JWSC utilizes a combination of T-1 telephone circuits and Comcast Internet at all of its facilities. These systems are currently functioning but are insufficient to provide the bandwidth and speed necessary to operate efficiently and reliably. The total cost estimated to install the fiber connections to the Administrative Building and Academy Creek Facility is $32,491.32. The agreement has been reviewed by both JWSC and Glynn County legal counsel and reviewed by the Facilities and Finance Committees.
Commissioner Elliott made a motion seconded by Commissioner Ford too approve the Intergovernmental Agreement with Glynn County for providing fiber optics, and to authorize the Chairman, Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer to execute the necessary documents. Motion carried 7-0-0.
6. Christmas Gift Cards – J. Donaghy
Mr. Donaghy stated the JWSC has in past years given employees a Christmas gift card as an expression of thanks. The Human Resources Committee recommends providing employees a gift card in the amount of $25 to Walmart.
Commissioner Boland made a motion seconded by Commissioner Ford to approve the Brunswick-Glynn County Joint Water and Sewer Commission provide employees a gift card in the amount of $25 to Walmart. Motion carried 7-0-0.
7. Christmas Holiday Days – J. Donaghy
Mr. Donaghy stated the HR Standards of Practice currently provides for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day as observed holidays. Staff has requested an exception be made this year as Christmas Eve falls on Wednesday, and, instead move the observed holiday to the Friday after Christmas. The exception will not adversely affect the normal operations of the JWSC and customers will receive advance notice of the change.
Commissioner Boland made a motion seconded by Commissioner Cason to approve the exception to the Human Resources Standards of Practice to reschedule the Christmas Eve holiday to the Friday following Christmas in December 2014. Motion carried 7-0-0.
8. Administrative Office Building – S. Swan
Mr. Swan stated the firm of Ussery-Rule Architects, PC has prepared the design documents for renovations in consultation with JWSC Commissioners and Staff. Drexel Paulk, Procurement Director, and staff from Ussery-Rule Architects, have prepared bid documents to obtain quotes for the scope of work necessary. The proposed due date for bids is Monday, January 5, 2015.
Commissioner Ford stated the Facilities Committee did not recommend but had referred the decision to the full Board of Commissioners. Commissioner Ford advised the Commission of his concerns on how the process had developed.
Commissioner Boland made a motion seconded by Commissioner Perry to approve the issuance of the bid request for renovations to its property located at 1703 Gloucester Street, Brunswick, GA on Friday, November 21, 2014. Motion carried 5-2-0. (Commissioners Dean and Ford cast the opposing votes.)
9. Approve Rescheduling January Board of Commission Meetings.
Chairman Provenzano stated the first Thursday in January fell on New Year’s Day and suggested the board consider rescheduling the meetings to the second and fourth Thursdays for the month of January, 2015.
Commissioner Perry made a motion seconded by Commissioner Elliott to reschedule the regular meetings to January 8, 2015 and January 22, 2015. Motion carried 7-0-0.
10. Sterling Industrial Park and SR 99
Mr. Swan stated this is a 3-phase project in the North Mainland area along SR 99, US 341 and Green Swamp Road. The main purpose is to complete the western loop in the water system along SR 99 and US 341 and loop Green Swamp Road to the Golden Isles Parkway. The completion of this project will provide reliable water service to the Sterling Industrial Park. Staff and the Development Authority have been unable to secure easements from the property owners. Most of the property owners have now requested compensation for the easement areas or have stated they will not grant the easements at all. Prior to purchase and/or condemnation for the acquisition of these utility easements, staff recommends moving forward with an agreement with Driggers Commercial Group for real estate appraisals addressing the easement value for the properties in question.
Commissioner Boland made a motion seconded by Commissioner Elliott to authorize an agreement with Driggers Commercial Group, Inc. in the amount of $16,800 for real estate appraisals addressing the easement value of properties necessary for the construction of the Sterling Industrial Park and SR 99 – US 341 Water Main Extension in accordance with JWSC’s approved policy for sole source procurement. Motion carried 7-0-0.
1. Hiring Practices of the JWSC – Commissioner Dean
Commissioner Dean stated she had concerns with the some recent hires by the JWSC and positions being created without the Board of Commissioners being advised. Commissioner Dean explained she understood that unlicensed applicants were hired at rates above those posted in lieu of promoting current employees with the necessary licenses.
Discussion tabled for discussion in executive session.
2. Georgia Power Credit Update – J. Donaghy
Mr. Donaghy explained that a Georgia Power audit had identified that 97 accounts were incorrectly coded as commercial instead of industrial. Georgia Power has corrected the accounts and has issued JWSC a credit of $20,064.48.
Mr. Swan stated he had met with Zenith on Worker’s Compensation Insurance. Zenith is excited about the new safety policies the JWSC has put in place. Turner & Associates is currently in the process of securing quotes for renewal.
During inspection of the ground storage tank on South Harrington, it was determined that some improvements were needed. Staff is currently securing quotes for this work.
The JWSC is currently conducting a demo on handhelds and tablets from Verizon. City Works, Part II is in design.
Engineering is developing cost for Community Road project. A meeting was held with residents of Epworth Acres and one will be scheduled for Belle Pointe residents in the near future.
There will be an Employee Christmas Luncheon on December 17, 2015 at Howard Coffin Park.
Chairman Provenzano suggested that all Commissioner that could attend the ACCG three day orientation class in December. The Chairman requested Mr. Donaghy coordinate this with Commissioners.
Commissioner Elliott made a motion seconded by Commissioner Boland to close the regular meeting and adjourn to executive session to discuss potential litigation and personnel. Motion carried 7-0-0.
Back in session.
Commissioner Elliott made a motion seconded by Commissioner Boland to accept the recommendation of the Executive Director and Attorney to approve an exception to the Human Resources Standards of Practice concerning administrative leave. Motion carried 7-0-0.
Commissioner Dean made a motion seconded by Commissioner Boland to move reschedule the first meeting in December to December 2, 2015. Motion carried 7-0-0.
There being no additional business to bring before the Commission, Chairman Provenzano adjourned the meeting.