Regular Meeting Minutes – May 7, 2018

           Jasper County Board of Commissioners

May 7, 2018

Regular Meeting Minutes

6:00 P.M.


Comm. Pennamon called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m.

Commissioners Present: Chairman, Carl Pennamon, Bruce Henry, Don Jernigan, Vice-Chairman, Craig Salmon, and Doug Luke.

Staff Present: Mike Benton, County Manager, Clerk Sharon Robinson, Finance Director, Dennis Pate, Fire Rescue Director, Chris Finch, and County Attorney, David Ozburn.

Pledge of Allegiance:


District 2, Bruce Henry

Agenda Approval:

Comm. Henry made motion approve the agenda tabling Old Business Item #5, Budget Discussion and #8 under New Business, Courthouse Security be moved to Executive Session, Comm. Salmon seconded; passed unanimously.

Consent Agenda:


Comm. Luke made motion to approve the Regular Meeting Minutes of April 2, 2018; Jernigan seconded; passed unanimously.

Comm. Henry made motion to approve the Work Session Minutes of April 16, 2018, Luke seconded; passed unanimously.

Check Register:

Comm. Jernigan made motion to approve the check register which included check #’s 52690-53003 for payment, Henry seconded; passed unanimously.

Public Hearing:


Commissioner’s Items:

Jernigan: None

Henry: Tax assessment up to 21%, sure we will get a lot of calls and appeals. Maybe when Tax Assessor meets with us she can clear up some of the inconsistencies.

Pennamon: None

Salmon:  Noted there has been issues with City/County, still hopes we can work towards some kind of consolidation of services where we don’t get their debt.


Proclamation – Older Americans Month:

Ms. Robinson read the Proclamation for record.

Comm. Salmon made motion to approve the proclamation as presented, Jernigan seconded; passed unanimously.

Regular Agenda:

Old Business:

911 Radio Communication Update – Transcom Final Payment:

Betty Jump, EMA Director requested approval to go ahead and pay Transcom their final bill in the amount of $17,614.49.


Sheriff Pope requested that the Sheriff portion of the bill come out of his current budget rather than impact fees as noted.


Comm. Henry made motion to approve the final payment of the Transcom Phase 1 bill in the amount of $17,614.49 and the Sheriff Department amount ($14,074.48) to come out of his budget instead of impact fees, Salmon seconded; passed unanimously.


2012 SPLOST Public Works Equipment – Road Broom, Crack Sealer, Flat Bed Approval to Seek Bids:

Mr. Benton noted staff is seeking approval to seek bids for new equipment or quotes on old.

Comm. Henry clarified we are looking for new and used.

Mr. Benton noted that is correct.

Comm. Henry noted some equipment is not good to get used.

Comm. Luke noted he feels we need a limb cutter attachment.

Comm. Salmon made motion to approve staff to seek bids for a road construction broom, crack sealer,  flatbed truck, and limb attachment shear to be funded by 2012 SPLOST, Jernigan seconded; passed unanimously.

Senior Center CDBG Project Update and Approval:

Michael Turner with JMA Architecture reviewed a slide show presentation of the Design Intent, Floor Plan and Exterior of the CDBG Senior Center Project. (A copy of this presentation is attached and made a part of the official minutes).

Mr. Turner noted the construction time from is 8 months, once we get under construction.

Comm. Pennamon questioned if the bid will come in under the amount.

Mr. Turner noted that they have actually worked with a reputable contractor and every indication they have right now preliminarily shows we are in budget; it is noted that anytime you do an estimate it is just a snapshot in time and with the construction market the way it is now, it could go up or down; that is why we are doing competitive bids.

Comm. Pennamon clarified that we are going to have to put in a separate septic system.

Mr. Turner noted that is correct, but that has been taken into account with preliminary budgets, so we should be fine, if not; we will take that in stride, but we do build in construction contingency for that purpose.

Comm. Pennamon expressed concern with the county having to supplement any additional amount.

Comm. Henry questioned the equipment.

Mr. Turner noted there is a separate fund for this, under separate budget line items, and Ms. Norton should be able to speak on that.

Comm. Salmon make motion to approve final construction plans and bid documents to be sent out to contractors for the CDBG Senior Center Project, Jernigan seconded; passed unanimously.

Ms. Norton noted she is happy with the Plan and Design.

2018 LMIG Project Selection Approval to Seek Bids:

Mr. Benton noted staff needs final project list for bid preparation for 2018 LMIG Program Funds.

Robert Jordan, Engineer noted he prepared an application and cost estimate for 2.52 miles on Post Road, just north of Lowery Branch and end at Smithbrock Road; it is widening road by 2 feet. This is full depth reclamation proposal. The cost he estimated is $713,428.00

Comm. Pennamon clarified that 2018 LMIG money has been received.

Mr. Benton noted yes, we have received the $546,259.70.

Comm. Luke made motion to approve staff to seek bids for the 2018 LMIG Project, Henry seconded; passed unanimously.

FY 2019 Budget Discussion:


New Business:

Jasper County Health Department Board Appointment – Wiley Jordan:

Mr. Benton noted that Wiley Jordan’s term expired on December 31, 2017.  Christa McMillan has confirmed that Mr. Jordan has agreed to continue serving on the board.  His new term will be January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2023.

Comm. Salmon made motion to re-appoint Dr. Wiley Jordan to continue serving as a Director on the Jasper County Health Department Board, term to run from January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2023, Jernigan seconded; passed unanimously.

Upper Ocmulgee River RC&D Council Appointment – Jasper County Extension Agent Charlie Todd:

Mr. Bill Whitten gave an overview of the Upper Ocmulgee River RC&D Council.


Mr. Benton noted the board needs to appoint someone to the Upper Ocmulgee River Board to replace past County Extension Agent, Trey Gafnea. Staff recommendation is to appoint Mr. Charlie Todd, our newly hired County Extension Agent.  Mr. Todd has agreed to serve on this Board.


Comm. Jernigan made motion to appoint Charlie Todd to the Upper Ocmulgee River RC&D Council Board, Henry seconded; passed unanimously.


Georgia State Defense Force Request for Use of County Facilities:

Mr. Sammy McCowan noted The Georgia State Defense Force is requesting the use two Jasper County facilities. Fire Station 1 Training Classroom – will be used for classroom training for disaster chain saw debris clearing on Saturday, May 19, 2018 from 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. The Landfill Borrow Pit will be used for field training for disaster chain saw debris clearing on Saturday, May 19, 2018 from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 and Sunday, May 20 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.


Mr. McCowan noted that each participant and instructor will be required to sign a release of liability letter for the course.


Comm. Salmon made motion to approve the use of Training Room and Landfill on May 19th and 20th for Georgia State Defense Force, Henry seconded; passed unanimously.


Tax Assessor – Freeport Exemption Resolution:

Lynn Bentley, Chief Appraiser noted that Freeport is an exemption allowed on manufactured goods produced in Jasper County. Ms. Bentley noted that she received a request for a copy of our Freeport Resolution after doing some research she found that the exemption was approved by voters in 1992, but a resolution could not be found in the Clerk’s Office.  The board needs to approve the resolution to be recorded.

Comm. Salmon made motion to approve Resolution # 05.07.2018 for Freeport Exemption, Jernigan seconded; passed unanimously.

Tax Assessor 2018 Digest Overview:

Ms. Bentley provided the Board with a handout on Overview of 2018 Digest Changes.

Ms. Bentley noted the digest went up this year. There were 46 new houses this year. 230 permits were completed this year, not including new houses. When you have properties that have had physical reviews done, it is possible that one person could see and increase and someone else see a decrease.  It should be looked at situation by situation. She noted when people get assessment notices, they need to come see her.

Comm. Henry questioned how he can explain this to someone.

Comm. Pennamon questioned how we can get the entire county done on a yearly basis.

Ms. Bentley noted, send people to her office and she tries to keep cost down and that is why they don’t try do the entire county yearly.

Ms. Bentley noted we have almost $3 million dollars increase in timber that has been harvested, $1 million in heavy equipment, and almost $8 million transferred from conservation into the forest land.

Ms. Bentley the Forest Land Protection Grant will not go away this year, we will see some changes but it will be based on the 2016 values.

Courthouse Security Discussion:

Moved to Executive Session

Fire Rescue Budget Amendment – Funded by Georgia Trauma Commission Grants:

Mr. Finch noted Jasper County Fire Rescue has applied for the Georgia Trauma Commission Related Equipment Grant Program and has been awarded. A second grant has also been opened for this fiscal year which both are noncompetitive. Jasper County Fire Rescue applied for grant in February 2018 from the Georgia Trauma Commission which provides monies for approved EMS trauma related equipment with the amount of monies based of off number of ambulances a service operates. On April 23, 2018, Jasper County Fire Rescue received an email with Georgia Trauma Commission re-authorizing monies for second round of grant money to purchase EMS trauma related equipment. EMS equipment needs to be purchased by June 30, 2018.


The equipment list is as follows:

Round 1

3- Ferno Scoop Stretcher @ $917.65 each

3- SureTemp Plus 690 Thermometers @ 249.53 each

Round 1 Total – $3501.54


Round 2

3- Child Restraint System @ $698.75 each

Round 2 Total – $2096.25


Mr. Finch noted the total of the combined is $5,597.79 the amount to be received from the grant is $4700.73; Jasper County Fire Rescue has the remaining monies in operational supplies to cover the difference of $897.06.


Comm. Henry clarified the $4700.73 is pass through money.

Mr. Finch noted yes and explained that the check had been sent to a wrong address and the state is saying it will take about 6-8 weeks to re-issue.

Comm. Jernigan asked that the Board be notified when the check comes in.

Comm. Salmon made motion to approve increase in the Fire Rescue Budget Capital Outlay for $4700.73 to purchase equipment listed from monies received and to be received from the Georgia Trauma Commission and the additional $897.06 to come out of Fire Rescue operational supplies budget, Luke seconded; passed unanimously.


Fire Rescue Budget Amendment – Funded by FM Global Grant:

Chief Finch noted that this grant works the same way as the previous, there is no match and we have already received the check.

Comm. Jernigan made motion to approve increasing Fire Rescue Budget Capital Outlay for $2513.00 funded from the FM Global Grant received in the amount of $2513, Henry seconded; passed unanimously.


Peachtree Recovery Services, Inc. – Property Damage Claims Recovery Service:


Mr. Benton noted this is a service company that we met at ACCG Conference, they identify potential county property claims that have fallen through the cracks through online data bases, the specialize in damage to guard rails, sidewalks, etc. for a fee.  He would like to know if staff should pursue.


Comm. Henry noted there would be no fee unless they collect


Comm. Jernigan noted he feels like it would be best for them to come and talk with us.


Comm. Pennamon noted he also feels it would be best for them to come and talk with County Manager and to check their references.


Atty. Ozburn noted he looked over the contract and it would need a little tweaking.


Jasper County Tornado Siren Warning Policy and Maintenance Plan:


Ms. Betty Jump noted they have just realized they are having some problems with the siren on Pintail. Called Loudons Communications as they put the sirens in; they came out and checked all the sirens, the one at Pintail had some issues, they had to do a reset on the main board.  The bill was $650. They have given us a quote for a preventive maintenance plan in the amount of $1,740 per year. They will come out twice a year. We need approval for the maintenance plan.


Comm. Jernigan questioned how long they weren’t working.


Ms. Jump noted she wasn’t aware they weren’t working until she got a call from Mrs. Jernigan.


Ms. Jump noted we do have the Code Red system that citizens can sign up for.


Chief Finch explained how the testing of the sirens work.


Comm. Jernigan clarified that the maintenance will be live tests when they come out.


Ms. Jump noted yes, we can set the time whenever we like.


Comm. Luke noted he would like to see it stay at 12 noon.


Ms. Jump noted the 911 Center will set people up on Code Red.


Comm. Henry noted we need to get the word out about Code Red.


Mr. Benton noted when he talked to a gentleman from FEMA, he indicated that many counties are moving away from the sirens, and are using Code Red.


Comm. Pennamon noted he feels instead of increasing the budget we need to push for people to sign up for Code Red.


Ms. Jump clarified that they would like her to test the sirens twice a month every other Wednesday.


Provide Finance Director with Online Banking Approval:


Mr. Benton noted that Dennis Pate is our new Finance Director and he needs access to the online banking.


Comm. Jernigan made motion that we provide our new Finance Director with online banking access, Salmon seconded; passed unanimously.


County Attorney Items:

Atty. Ozburn noted that he will need an Executive Session to discuss potential litigation and Courthouse Security

County Manager Items:

Mr. Benton noted there is movement on Pitts Chapel Road Bridge, United Consulting will come out next week to drill holes for geotechnical work.

Mr. Benton noted Blount Construction is finishing up Post Road.

Mr. Benton noted we finished all three wooden bridges, Pitts Chapel, Old Adgateville, and River Road.

2018 SPLOST he reached out to John Parrish with Southeast Consulting to get a price on timber cruise. He informed the board that there is more read tape once you file a construction plan.  Wednesday, May 16th Precision Planning is coming to talk about other projects.

Citizens Comments:


Executive Session:

Comm. Jernigan made motion to go into Executive Session at 7:50 p.m. to discuss potential litigation and Courthouse Security, Salmon seconded; passed unanimously.

Comm. Henry made motion to come out of Executive Session at 8:13 p.m., Salmon seconded; passed unanimously.


Comm. Salmon made motion to adjourn at 8:14 p.m., Jernigan seconded; passed unanimously.



Carl Pennamon, Chairman



Sharon S. Robinson, Clerk