MINUTES

SEMINOLE COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

REGULAR MONTHLY WORK SESSION

SEMINOLE COUNTY COURTHOUSE, SECOND FLOOR, SUPERIOR COURTROOM

TUESDAY, APRIL 8TH, 2014

5:00 P.M.

                                                     

The Seminole County Board of Commissioners held their Regular Monthly Work Session on Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 in the Superior Courtroom located on the second floor of the Courthouse. Those present were Chairman Chuck Orrick, Vice Chairman Brenda Peterson, Commissioner Roger Lane, Commissioner Darius Culverson, and County Manager/Clerk Paula Granger.

                           Agenda items were discussed prior to the Regular Meeting.  No action was taken.

MINUTES

SEMINOLE COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

REGULAR MONTHLY MEETING

SEMINOLE COUNTY COURTHOUSE, SECOND FLOOR, SUPERIOR COURTROOM

TUESDAY, APRIL 8TH, 2014

6:00 P.M.

 

The Seminole County Board of Commissioners held their Regular Monthly Meeting on Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 in the Superior Courtroom located on the second floor of the Courthouse. Those present were Chairman Chuck Orrick, Vice Chairman Brenda Peterson, Commissioner Roger Lane, Commissioner Darius Culverson, and County Manager/Clerk Paula Granger. 

 

The meeting was called to order by Chairman Orrick.     

 

The invocation was given by Commissioner Culverson followed by the Pledge of Allegiance. 

 

Roll call was conducted and a quorum was established.

 

Submission of Financial Statements and Minutes:

 

The financial report for February 2014 was approved on a motion by Commissioner Lane and a second by Vice Chairman Peterson.  All in favor, motion passed.

 

The minutes from the Regular Monthly Meeting held on March 11th, 2014 were approved on a motion by Commissioner Culverson and a second by Commissioner Lane.  All in favor, motion passed. 

 

Citizens Request:

 

Mr. Booker Green addressed the Board regarding his Alcohol Permit.  Chairman Orrick responded Attorney Mills had advised the Board not to approve the permit as it not allowed under the current ordinance. 

 

Mr. Monty Bullock, part time EMS employee, discussed privatization of EMS.  Mr. Bullock holds a fulltime EMS position in Decatur County.  Mr. Bullock stated privatization would benefit the county and employees, their ambulances and equipment are state of the art. 

 

Ms. Elaine Paquet, a citizen of Seminole County, stated she was not for privatizing unless there is a community agreement.  She also discussed the recent mutual aid issue with Decatur County and stated we could change EMS if we start at the top.  Chairman Orrick responded the lake would most likely have more coverage than it does now.  Ms. Paquet stated there should be more communication with the public and she had put this information out on five sites on the Internet. 

 

County Officer and Constitutional Officer Request:

 

Sheriff Elliott provided quotes for a truck.  This truck would replace a Crown Vic patrol car.  The funding for this purchase could be financed or paid for with USDA grant funds.  A motion to purchase the Dodge Truck from Cass Burke was provided by Commissioner Culverson with a second by Commissioner Lane.  All in favor, motion passed.  

 

County Attorney Status Report:

 

County Attorney Mills was absent.

 

Old Business:

                       

County Manager Granger updated the Board regarding the EMS Assessment that was conducted March 11th – 13th, 2014.  Assessment team members were:  Mr. Ernie Doss, Deputy Director of the Office of EMS, Georgia Department of Public Health; Mr. Dave Wills, ACCG Government Relations Manager, Mr. Robert Vick, EMS Program Director for the Georgia Department of Public Health; and Mr. Terry Cobb, EMS Director from Laurens County.  A few of the problems identified are as follows:  there is a lack of leadership, deficiencies in the administration of EMS resulting in inconsistency of personnel matters and operational outcomes, equipment and facility maintenance is inadequate, and there is no clear command structure, and there are communication issues between EMS and other community partners, county management, and county commissioners.  This has resulted in low morale, mistrust, and lack of confidence.    

 

County Manager Granger stated the Decatur County Board of Commissioners voted on March 25th, 2014 to have their attorney solicit bids for EMS and return bids by April 10th, 2014.  Three bids have been submitted to Seminole County from Mid Georgia, Gold Star, and Heartland EMS.  This date was extended by Decatur County until noon on April 18th, 2014 and a committee is to be formed consisting of both county administrators, the Chairman of each Board, and an EMS representative from each county.   

 

Commissioner Lane invited Ken Morey of Mid Georgia Ambulance to address the audience with his proposal.  Mr. Morey stated the proposal was for regionalization of EMS with Decatur County and Seminole County.  Decatur County would have two 24 hour trucks and Seminole County would have one 24 hour truck and one 12 hour truck located at the substation at the lake.  This was based on the combination of call volume, population, and time on task for both counties. Mr. Morey stated staffing hours can be adjusted once trends are determined.  During times of heavy calls, trucks will be rotated between Mitchell, Decatur, and Seminole Counties.  Mutual aid will also continue with surrounding counties. 

 

Mr. Morey also discussed EMD, emergency medical dispatch, which provides initial guidance to callers so they are able to assist the patient while waiting on the ambulance.  Our current 911 center will continue to answer 911 calls and dispatch the truck; the call will then be transferred for EMD.  Mr. Morey stated four new ambulances and new equipment will be brought to the county for immediate use.  Communication issues were addressed and Mr. Morey confirmed there would be no problems with communicating with other agencies as needed. 

 

Mr. James Register, EMS employee, stated there are problems with communication now and lack of communication costs lives.  Intrada is a new system used by Mid Georgia to ensure the driver of the ambulance is guided to the correct location using 911 data that has already been collected.  Mr. Bob Godwin asked the Board if the contract states any kind of response time and what happens if one truck is out of town on a transport and another is on a call.  Mr. Godwin also requested the Board look at the 12 hour truck and losing the other 12 hours currently scheduled.  Mr. Bobby Dukes asked if any calls have been received about the cost of running the ambulance service.    Commissioner Lane stated no one understands the cost of running the service, and Mr. Dukes agreed that no one knows how much it costs to run the fire department either. 

 

Chairman Orrick stated he had spoken with the hospital administrator in Mitchell County and the service from Mid Georgia has worked better than what they had.  Upson County also commented to Chairman Orrick that Mid Georgia was working fine.  County Manager Granger stated the employees on the 12 hour truck would stay on if the other truck is on a call.  There is also the possibility of leaving the 12 hour truck at the lake and have employees on call who could respond with that truck to any calls when necessary.  Both Commissioners Lane and Culverson stated they would not sacrifice safety or service for the citizens.  County Manager Granger stated the population at the lake changes throughout the year and there are no plans to remove the truck.  EMS employee Susan Grice stated she is for privatization but she is against cutting services to the citizens. 

 

Ms. Paquet requested the information be published so the public is aware of what is going on.  County Manager Granger stated the minutes are available on the website and the newspaper decides on what is printed.  County Manager Granger commented that current employees will continue their employment and this is critical because they know the health history of the citizens they have assisted, it will not be a new staff that would be unfamiliar with Seminole County residents.  Mr. Jim Tomlinson stated EMS is important to him and training and the ability to move resources around is beneficial. 

 

Mrs. Rathel stated her sister lived at Lake Seminole and she found her unresponsive and had to call 911 for assistance.  The first responder who arrived on scene was not trained and not able to offer much help, however, the ambulance got there in time to save her life.  

Mrs. Rather continued to say the morale at EMS has not been right for years and there needs to be some changes at EMS. 

 

Mr. Morey stated it is all about patient care and it is first priority.  Staffing requirements may be changed to include a non-emergency ALS day truck.  Addition of this truck will not cost the county any additional money.  Mr. Roy Dukes stated he had used the ambulance several times and experienced quick response times.  Mr. Dukes asked why Mid Georgia would take on a county that is losing money; Mr. Morey responded this is common in most counties.  Mid Georgia gets the same reimbursements as the county but there are many things they do different.  Mr. Dukes also asked if Mid Georgia decides to leave will the county be left with nothing, Mr. Morey responded that would not happen.  Mr. Dukes then asked about non- paying residents, who will pay their bill, who will do their paperwork? Mr. Morey stated the county is not responsible for indigent care and they write off debt such as this every year.  Mr. Robert Dukes asked why the 12 hour truck could not be staffed for 24 hours as currently set because there are no additional costs other than labor.  Mr. Morey stated there are additional costs to be considered other than labor.    

 

Mr. James Register asked if someone calls and wants their blood sugar checked would Mid Georgia charge a fee. Mr. Morey responded there would be no charge.  County Manager Granger stated Mid Georgia is involved in the community and provides programs where they will set up a table at various businesses to check blood pressure, sugar, etc. at no charge for participants.  Data is also tracked to determine if there are non-transport calls from the same address, if so, wellness checks are set up for those citizens at no charge. 

 

Also discussed were the costs associated with transports.  County Manager Granger stated comparisons with surrounding counties indicated Seminole County was in line with most fees, some adjustments were made.  A fire tax or Advalorem tax was suggested.

 

Following a five minute recess Chairman Orrick called the meeting back to order.

 

County Manager Granger requested the Board make a motion or table the EMS item.  Ms. Angie Rathel asked about the staffing needs with cutting the hours on one truck, Mr. Morey responded he would still need the employees and the hourly rate for the 12 hour truck will be higher than the 24 hour truck.  At the end of the year the salary is basically the same for a 12 hour or 24 hour employee.  Ms. Paula Whaley, 911 Coordinator, stated there is a problem with first responders and getting them to respond.  Mr. Morey stated Mid Georgia offers the class free of charge and it is all about participation.  Ms. Whaley stated she was concerned about cutting services, Mr. Morey responded we would have access to Decatur County and Mitchell County trucks.  Mr. Morey stated they staff for the average and have first responders and mutual aid.  Ms. Whaley stated in regard to EMD she has fought for an increase in personnel for the past ten years and been denied.

 

Commissioner Lane stated he has the same concerns as everyone in attendance and he is fully convinced we can provide service equal to or better than what we have now and we will have the same employees with brand new equipment.  Commissioner Lane made a motion to enter into a five year contract with Mid Georgia for a regional EMS contingent upon Decatur County doing the same.  A second was made by Vice Chairman Peterson.  All in favor, motion passed.  Mr. Andy Dukes questioned the motion and it was explained to him that the motion would be void if Decatur County does not agree to enter into a contract with Mid Georgia. 

 

County Manager Granger stated the inmate crew started working on March 17th, 2014 and were assigned to the Recreation Department.

 

County Manager Granger stated she had received one bid from TTL for the lead and asbestos surveys needed prior to demolition of the Training School.  Based on a recommendation from Stacy Watkins and there being no other bids, a motion to accept the bid from TTL was made by Commissioner Lane with a second by Commissioner Culverson.  All in favor, motion passed.

 

County Manager Granger stated the ramps for Spring Creek Park will be poured later this week, weather permitting.  The county will be notified prior to the ramps being pushed into the lake to allow for photos for the newspaper.  The completion date for the park is mid-June; several rain delays have extended the timeline.

 

County Manager Granger stated the resurfacing project on Brackin Road has been completed.

 

County Manager Granger provided the overtime report and stated overtime hours were down 1,604 hours or a total of $21,594 as compared to this time last year.  The purchasing log was provided with no questions.  County Manager purchases for the month were binders in the amount of $60.

 

New Business:

 

County Manager Granger stated there is a new owner for Seminole Grocery and Deli, now Sonny’s Grocery and Deli, and a new alcohol permit is required.  A motion to approve the permit was given by Commissioner Lane and a second by Commissioner Culverson.  All in favor, motion passed.

 

Announcements:

 

The annual conference is April 11th – 15th, 2014 in Savannah.

Summer training will take place June 5th – 6th, 2014 at Stone Mountain Park.

Adjournment:

With no further business to discuss, the meeting was adjourned on a motion made by Vice Chairman Peterson and a second by Commissioner Lane.  All in favor, motion passed. 

 

SEMINOLE COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

Brenda Peterson

Roger Lane

Chuck Orrick

Darius Culverson

ATTEST:

PAULA GRANGER, CLERK

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

C E R T I F I C A T I O N

 

 

STATE OF GEORGIA

 

COUNTY OF SEMINOLE

 

 

I, Paula L. Granger, the duly appointed Clerk of the Board of Commissioners of Seminole County, Georgia, and keeper of the minutes in and for the said Board of Commissioners, do hereby certify that the attached constitutes a full, complete and correct copy of the original minutes of a Regular Monthly Meeting held on April 8th, 2014, approved by the Seminole County Board of Commissioners at a Regular Meeting held on May 13th, 2014.    

 

            Given under my official signature and seal of office, on this the 13th day of May, 2014.   

 

                                                                   ____________________________________

Paula L. Granger, Clerk of the Board of                           Commissioners of Seminole County, Georgia

 

(SEAL OF OFFICE)