IN THE COUNTY COURT OF THE STATE OF OREGON IN AND FOR THE COUNTY OF GRANT
Access the court’s weekly Agenda and approved Minutes on the Commissioner’s page at www.gcoregonlive2.com.
DECEMBER 10, 2014
Pursuant to notice made to the newspaper of general circulation throughout Grant County, the radio station, county website, and e-mail distribution list, a regular meeting of the County Court was held at the County Courthouse in Canyon City OR.
9:00 am -- Call to Order. Present were Judge Scott W. Myers, Commissioners Boyd Britton and Chris B. Labhart, Secretary Mary Ferrioli, Circuit Court Administrator Tammy Wheeler, Patrick Bentz, Jim Sproul and Pastor Levi Manitsas. A Pledge of Allegiance was given to the United States flag. The invocation was given by Pastor Manitsas.
CLAIMS. The court had approved claims and Extension District Warrant Nos. 244–253. Tagged claims were from Economic Stabilization to KJDY / finance fee & late charge and from Sheriff to Rebekah Rand for paying CPR training to volunteers in error.
AGENDA. MSP: Myers/Britton -- to accept the agenda as presented
Britton reported on the Annual AOC Conference that he attended in Eugene last month. He also commented on his recent visit to see family in Los Angeles. Britton attended a SEACT meeting and would be attending a Community Counseling Solutions meeting at 11:15 am and a Regional Solutions meeting from 1 – 3 pm.
Myers attended a Court Security meeting last Thursday in Circuit Court about the Easley trial and the next steps in that case. Monday evening he attended the Airport Commission meeting and yesterday he attended the Safety Committee at the Courthouse at 8 am. He has been asked to take Labhart’s place in delivering Meals on Wheels tomorrow morning.
Labhart attended a Blue Mountain Hospital board meeting November 20 and a Hospital Compliance meeting November 24. Tuesday he attended a Senior Citizens Advisory Council meeting in Monument. Last Wednesday and Thursday Labhart attended a CAC Summit in Portland. This Monday he attended an AOC Veteran’s Committee meeting in Salem and testified at a Senate confirmation hearing for appointment to the Health Evidence Review Commission on Tuesday. Tomorrow, Labhart will drive the VA Van to Boise and then attend a monthly Library Board meeting. At 6:30 pm he will attend the “Light up a Life” ceremony at Valley View.
9:10 am -- Kathy Smith entered
MINUTES. MSP: Myers/Labhart -- to approve the November 19 minutes as presented
HAND CHECK. MSP: Myers/Labhart -- to approve a $44.97 hand check to Quill for Central Supply signed by Judge Myers November 25.
AIRPORT. Airport Manager Patrick Bentz discussed airport promotional opportunities with the court. One is a banner advertisement on the Chamber of Commerce page in the annual Eastern Oregon Visitor’s Guide that is 7“ long by ¾ “ high and costs $500.00. The guide goes out across the country and on the website. Bentz said Epic Aviation (fuel supplier) co-op funds could pay for ½ the cost, if the Epic logo is used and funds are used before the end of December. He indicated the Airport Commission was in favor of airport promotional opportunities. Myers, who is an Airport Commissioner, confirmed that support. MSP: Labhart/Myers -- to approve the Eastern Oregon Visitor’s Guide promotional opportunities for 2015.
9:15 am – Hal Smith entered
Another opportunity is with Oregon Aviation Industries (under Business Oregon). Its mission is to promote and grow the industry in Oregon. Bentz would like the airport to become a member for an annual $100.00 fee. It includes 2 free admissions to quarterly meetings around the state where he could meet industry leaders and network with other airport personnel. Bentz had contacted other airports about ORAVI. He said Burns and La Grande didn’t know much about the organization, but Prineville and Ontario airports were very positive about the organization’s ability to promote airports and keep them up-to-date on aviation issues. Myers remarked on the Commission’s support of this membership. Bentz mentioned the strategic importance of the airport’s adjacent Industrial Park. Britton said, due to the Ontario airport ex-manager and Economic Development Coordinator’s recommendation he would approve the request. MSP: Britton/Myers -- to approve the airport’s Oregon Aviation Industries membership as presented. These funds are within the airport’s budget.
Bentz requested signature on a Vaisala Aviation Support and Maintenance Services Agreement renewal for the Automated Weather Observation System. The new one year term would begin next March with an annual fee of $5,120.00 that is billed quarterly. MSP: Labhart/Myers -- to authorize Judge Myers signature on the Vaisala Aviation Support and Maintenance Services Agreement renewal for the Automated Weather Observation System.
9:25 am -- Shannon Springer entered
COURTHOUSE ELEVATOR. Courthouse Facilities Committee members Kathy Smith, Tammy Wheeler, and Shannon Springer were present to report on their December 1 meeting with Myers to discuss Pinnacle Architecture’s design options for locating the elevator. The group also had a phone conference that day with project architect Tim Clem. At the end of the meeting the committee agreed locating the elevator in the north stairwell was the best option due to -- easy access / central location, no loss of office space, minimal disruption to Courthouse functions, least potential for in-custody defendants comingling with the public, lower cost, and proximity of the mechanical room. The north stairwell also allows continued use of the Stair Lift during construction. Other elevator location options would take office space away from the Assessor and the Justice of the Peace, were outside the central area, or would comingle the public with inmate transports. It was pointed out that the Courthouse’s
West Entrance on Humbolt Street has been and would continue to be the building’s designated handicapped access point.
Britton was concerned that using the stairwell takes away from the aesthetic appearance of the Courthouse. He understood that it was needed and felt the committee did a good job. Circuit Court Administrator Wheeler responded that some other options would have the public coming into contact with inmate transports. Myers added that ODJ is involved in funding the elevator so those issues should be a priority. Wheeler said a draft elevator funding agreement with ODJ would be coming to the county soon for review. Other discussion followed about differing opinions the county has received from the State Fire Marshall and State Building Official related to placement of the 2,500 lb capacity elevator. General discussion took place about the West Entry handicapped parking space slope improvement which needs to be part of this project and some future improvements the county could make to the Courthouse’s West Entry. Britton suggested that we ask the architect to clarify the ADA requirement for the handicapped parking slope and if an automatic entry door would be required. He wanted to be sure everything that’s needed is properly addressed in this project. MSP: Myers/Britton -- to accept the Elevator Committee recommendation to locate the elevator in the north stairwell. Later, Pinnacle Architecture clarified that the handicapped parking space slope would not be included in the elevator project, an automatic door is not required, and placement of the mailboxes does not interfere with wheelchair access.
9:55 am -- Dean Hoodenpyl and Roni Hickerson entered
COMMUNITY CORRECTIONS. Community Corrections Director Dean Hoodenpyl said his current (second hand) copy machine is no longer working and there is no service agreement. Also, three printers are malfunctioning even after having service. Hoodenpyl added there is just one scanner in the building and there is a need for employees to fax documents, but there’s no phone line for a fax machine. He requested permission to lease an all-in-one machine that satisfies all the employees’ copy, print, scan and fax needs – the Copystar CS 3051ci multi-function copier for $122.39 per month from TEC Copier Systems in Baker City. Comparable quotes were also provided from Eagle Office Concepts in La Grande for $142.61 per month and Alpine Copier Service to purchase a used copier at either $1,700.00 or $2,500.00. Hoodenpyl said purchasing would be less expensive in the long run, but leasing was the best option since it allows the department to see how this new arrangement would work. Treasurer Kathy Smith explained the previous and current maintenance arrangements that county departments use. Labhart favored having a common maintenance / service company for our departments. Before making the decision, Britton suggested the county consider purchasing two multi-function copiers – one for Community Corrections and one for Justice Court. Smith said the need may be different for the Justice Court and that department currently has a working copier. Labhart added that Justice Court was previously asked to budget a copier for next year. Smith noted that Community Corrections has a revenue stream outside the General Fund to pay for it, but Justice Court does not. Myers agreed it may be unfair to approve one request and deny the other; however, these are two different situations. Smith offered to ask TEC if purchasing two copiers would save the county money (as Britton suggested). MSP: Myers/Labhart -- to authorize purchase of the TEC multi-function copier for Community Corrections and allow Treasurer Smith to see if there’s savings in purchasing a second machine for Justice Court. Later today, Smith was told by TEC that purchasing two machines does not save money.
10:25 am -- Kimberly Lindsay, Rory Schilling and Lindsay Mayhan entered
EOCA DUES. The court reviewed and discussed an invoice from Eastern Oregon Counties Association c/o Union County for Blue Mountain Forest Plan dues totaling $2,201.00. MSP: Britton/Myers -- to approve payment of the Eastern Oregon Association dues invoice for Blue Mountain Forest Plan dues of $2,201.00 for services of Mason, Bruce and Girard.
MENTAL HEALTH & PUBLIC HEALTH. Community Counseling Solutions Director Kimberly Lindsay gave an informational update on the county’s mental health and public health services. New Juniper Ridge Acute Care Center Manager Rory Schilling and Health Department Manager Lindsay Mahgan were also present. Schilling previously worked in the State of Washington. He talked about his professional background and experience, and plans to grow programs and staffing at Juniper Ridge. In response to Britton’s inquiry, Lindsay explained the intake process and typical progressive course of action for treating an individual with acute mental health needs. Labhart asked about and received information from Lindsay on the acute mental health treatment for veterans. There was discussion about health services staffing and how training may help maintain stable staffing. Lindsay was glad to report the Mental Health and Addictions Site Review resulted in no findings. Mahgan talked about strategic planning for the health department that needs to be complete before applying for accreditation (complying with national standards) which she hopes to do next summer. Lindsay believed that accreditation would eventually be linked to the receipt of funds. The cost to reach accreditation is $30,000 and the health department received a $15,000 grant to help with costs. She added that we have the only Primary Care health department in the state. She addressed what the Governor’s Task Force on Public Health has been doing around a set of specific plans to become more efficient with public health dollars. A meeting on this topic at CCS with the Harney County Judge and Commissioner Britton will be at 1:15 pm today. It was reported the School Based Health program is breaking even at this time.
When Labhart asked, Lindsay stated that health department finances are fine, with our help. She added that she sent us the financial narrative. (SEE Public Comments) Lindsay said some reserves had to be used which she thinks can be replaced when the first Medicaid Claiming payment is received. She indicated that now it is possible to focus on quality services and revenue generation. Lindsay said catching up on Primary Care billings would have a positive impact. She foresees sitting down with the court for another conversation about a similar request for public health funds next year.
Mahgan said she’s happy with jail services and she looks forward to going there on Tuesdays.
11:15 am – Britton left the meeting to attend other meetings.
COMMUNICATION SITE LEASE. Court members reviewed and signed Communication Site Lease renewals with Iron Triangle for the Dixie Mountain and Fall Mountain sites, each payable at $600.00 per year until December 31, 2017. MSP: Labhart/Myers – to sign both lease agreements with Iron Triangle for Dixie Butte and Fall Mountain sites.
COMMERCIAL PROPERTY LEASES. The court reviewed and signed Commercial Property Lease Agreements with Training & Employment Consortium and Umatilla-Morrow Head Start for use of office space for Child Care Resource & referral located at 530 East Main in John Day. Each lease is payable at $215.00 per month until June 30, 2017. MSP: Labhart/Myers – to sign agreements with Training and Employment Consortium and Umatilla-Morrow Head Start. The court also signed a Commercial Property Lease Amendment with C-2 Utility Contractors to extend occupancy from January 1 to March 31, 2015. Myers explained that Canyon City Planning Commission’s process to acquire this property would take much longer than first anticipated. MSP: Myers/Labhart – to sign the Commercial Property Lease Amendment with C-2 Utility Contractors.
BUDGET RESOLUTION. Court members reviewed and signed Resolution 14-42 Making Transfer from Contingency, General Fund totaling $6,600.00 to District Attorney Materials & Services for additional revenue to cover the additional bill from the doctor involved in the Easley juvenile case. MSP: Labhart/Myers – to sign Resolution 14-42 as presented.
PUBLIC COMMENT. Budget Committee member Hal Smith said he was most disappointed about the lack of time devoted to the Community Counseling Solutions discussion, given its importance. He said he’s heard in the community that people are concerned about retention. Smith appreciated hearing briefly from Kimberly Lindsay that funding is fine, but yet they will be asking for more financial support. He wanted to know what the court thought -- since they (as the Local Health Authority) are responsible for staying informed about finances. Smith felt the Tax ID billing problem had been apparent for two years and wanted to know why our federal representatives couldn’t get involved with the issue. Discussion followed about the county’s need to receive financial statements.
Treasurer Kathy Smith had asked for a copy of the CCS financial statements several times, but has not seen one yet. She requested a copy of the first quarter statement again today. Kathy Smith suggested the court meet with CCS the first week in January about future financial needs, since our budget process begins then. She added that mental health and public health service contracts and the property lease agreement will expire June 30, 2015. Myers was asked to compose a letter to CCS asking to receive quarterly financial reports and hold a meeting with Kimberly Lindsay early in January to discuss the FY15-16 budget. The letter could be presented for court signature next week.
Jim Sproul said he heard about auctioning of the old Pine Mill equipment in January. He referred to the start of travel management on the Malheur NF he found in a February 1, 1973 Blue Mountain Eagle. Sproul asked about the forest plan revision public comment process.
EOCCO LOCAL COMMUNITY ADVISORY COUNCIL. The court received an Eastern Oregon Coordinated Care Organization Local Community Advisory Council application from Jenni Workman. MSP: Myers/Labhart -- to appoint Jenni Workman as a volunteer on the Local Community Advisory Council.
11:45 am – Lunch Recess until 1:00 pm. Judge Scott Myers, Commissioner Chris Labhart, the Court Secretary, Treasurer Kathy Smith, Justice of the Peace Kathy Stinnett JP Clerk Jamie McKay, Public Forest Commissioner Brooks Smith, Jim Sproul, Mike Cosgrove and Leslie Stillwell were present.
JUSTICE OF THE PEACE. JP Kathy Stinnett requested approval to hire temporary relief help for 40 hrs the week of December 15 - 19 at $12.50 per hour. Stinnett said the person she has in mind is familiar with court procedures and would not require training. If approved, the temporary could accomplish work she and the Clerk started last February, but haven’t been able to complete (purging files, warrants & fine collections). The temp could also maintain customer service answering phones and taking payments while the JP and Clerk work on tasks that require more legal experience and knowledge. Stinnett also provided a spreadsheet comparing Justice Court case activity and Clerk hours at Arlington, Baker, Grant and Harney Justice Courts. Labhart clarified that when Stinnett took office there was a backlog of warrants and other legal matters. Stinnett explained three levels of activities and priorities that regularly occur in the Justice Court structure. She had visited with incoming DA Jim Carpenter who told her he didn’t expect any change in activities. Discussion took place about non-trial activities that occur on Fridays when Stinnett works alone. Labhart asked if another 8 hour day for the Clerk could help, and suggested future needs be defined and included in the budget process. Stinnett felt it was more cost effective to have relief help work one week (without benefits) as needed. She talked about skills and experience that Amy Bellinger has acquired by working as a volunteer in her office so many times in the past. Discussion followed about available relief help funds, space available for Bellinger to work with files, misdemeanor crimes handled here while other
JP courts handle only traffic, and having Bellinger as an alternate employee as-needed in the future. Labhart favored the 40 hr relief work period for Bellinger. MSP: Myers/Labhart -- to approve the temporary hire of Amy Bellinger at $12.50 per hr for one week in December. Labhart asked Stinnett to report back on how this temporary hire helped with the backlog.
SCENIC BIKEWAY. Malheur Cycling representative Mike Cosgrove introduced bicyclist Leslie Stillwell. He was present to request a letter of support to the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department for the Logan Valley Scenic Bikeway application and designation. If approved by OPRD, the old railroad beds would become the first gravel scenic bikeway in the nation. Cosgrove distributed a photo and map of the area, described the state’s scenic bikeway program, and noted that this gravel bikeway was so appealing because it is “family friendly” and so picturesque. He talked about including horses and walking along with bicycles. Cosgrove didn’t think the bikeway would be an attractive experience for ATV users.
He will be obtaining a letter of recommendation from the Forest Service and the Paiute Tribe since the bikeway travels over those jurisdictions. The county’s letter of support would improve the competitiveness of the OPRD scenic bikeway application.
Public Access Advisory Board Chair Jim Sproul expressed support of the scenic bikeway and saw the designation as a real benefit to public access. However, Sproul did not like use of the word “scenic” due to possible restrictions on use that might become associated. Cosgrove said several scenic bikeways on federal forests have existed for about five years without a problem. He believed the word “scenic” assures the competitiveness of the OPRD application. Public Forest Commissioner Brooks Smith remarked on the NEPA process and talked about the “background” aspect this term would have on this designation. Cosgrove clarified that this program is administered under the State Parks Trail System. He added that this designation would not alter or change any current public access on the trail.
Myers recited the draft letter of support which was well received by all in attendance. The letter was to be readdressed next week when Britton is present.
2:20 pm -- Adjourned
Mary R. Ferrioli
County Court Secretary