Meeting called to order with invocation, pledge of allegiance, and approval of agenda with 2 changes: 1) removal of update on new Zoning Regulations; and 2) BOCC meeting minutes from 8/23/17 and 8/30/17 not yet ready to be approved.
No staff reports or public comments.
1) Recognition of ECCA (Elbert County Communications Authority) volunteers - Barry Mitchell and Jim White were honored and thanked for repairing a decaying communications tower. Jim White summarized the services and equipment of ECCA.
2) Discussion with Elbert School District officials - Roger Miller, member of the Elbert School Board, introduced school officials to discuss road issues within their school district. Commissioners inadvertently missed a meeting that had been scheduled with the Elbert School District. Elbert School Superintendent feels that the safety of students is being jeopardized due to road conditions. Maps were handed out to commissioners pointing out roads of concern. Transportation director for Elbert Schools (who has been driving a bus out here for 20 years) has never seen the roads in such poor condition, leading to much more serious wear and tear on buses. Elbert has 3 to 4 times as many snow days as the state average, due to the condition of the roads. Road and Bridge Supervisor passed on his contact information to Elbert School officials and a meeting was proposed between the county and the school district. Commissioner Richardson spoke “as a member of the Elizabeth School District” about the county’s responsibility for safety of students.
3) Update on budget - Rick Pettit, Treasurer, has been adjusting numbers to reflect more realistic funding for priorities. Ahead of schedule for budgeting process. Marlene Groves made a public comment about attending the meeting and applauded the county for getting information out to citizens. (Editorial comment: Bill Harris’s “Of course” disrespectful comment - from his seat in the audience - as Ms. Groves approached the podium is indicative of the preference of certain segments of our county population who prefer that citizens remain silent)
4) Update on Road and Bridge - Rory Hale, Public Works, began his report (interrupted for a battery change in the microphone) on various roads in the county which are being coated with recycled asphalt. Also patching on Kiowa Bennet Rd. Gravel situation - suggested that the county reach out to a geologist (or an intern) to seek out better gravel sources. May be locations within the county that would produce better quality gravel. Commissioner Thayer appreciates “new ideas for some old problems.” Public Works/Road and Bridge are putting together a capital improvements plan; prefer to be proactive rather than reactive. Hope to have this plan in place by the first of the year. Public comment: Roger Miller asked, “What makes good gravel?” Response by Rory Hale - what county has is not good; too much sand/loam. Elbert pit looks like it may have good gravel. Looking at crushed brick or eastern plains limestone material. Good gravel needs aggregate. Because the county has basically been reactive in recent years, the problem has not been addressed.
Citizen Maureen Buck asked about snow fencing and drainage; per Hale, road rebuild projects are adding culverts to address drainage. Citizen Justin Klaussen asked that the county use native grasses as they reclaim ditches. Citizen Marlene Groves wondered why budget remains flat for Road and Bridge. (Followed by another rude outburst by Bill Harris who appears to be an ongoing heckler; his heckling has thus far been unaddressed by the county commissioners). Richardson said that the county allocates 25% of budget to roads; state average is 12-13%. Not a matter of allocation but a matter of lack of funds - need to increase economic activity and “a few other things” per Commissioner Thayer
5) Hiring Process for County Manager - Commissioner Richardson updated the process; final slate announced; individual interviews with commissioners; 2 panels set up - one with elected officials and one with folks the “county needs to be coordinating with.” (Ric Morgan, Lee Benjamin, a fire department official and a school superintendent were mentioned as part of this panel.) Nothing mentioned about any panels/sessions/forums being open to the public; there has also been no public posting to solicit members for any interview panels.
Public hearing for approval of a special event permit for Elizabeth Chamber of Commerce Oktoberfest -September 29 & 30. Temporary liquor license/special event permit approved. Public comment: Mary Lou Froberg mentioned the Coyote Creek concert on the same date at the same location.
BOARD PLANNING for 9/27/27 BOCC meeting:
Agenda items: BOCC minutes approvals; workshops/study sessions; pending hearings - ECZR part II, sections 17, 25 and 27; building permit fee schedule to include minor oil and gas permits to drill and minor oil and gas permits for completion activities such as tanks, batteries, on-site pipelines, etc.; amend fee schedule as described in Part I, section 8 of ECZR as it pertains to development permits for Tier III SURs including solar installations, wind developments, solid waste treatment facilities, major oil and gas development, pipelines, power installations and SUR that involves 500+acres as well as Tier II SURs for commercial communications (cell, radio, etc.) towers; update on property protest hearings going on to state; 3 land use hearings
(Editor's Note: Citizen's who met later in Executive Session discussed possible fundraisers to buy Bill Harris his own ex-large custom made muzzle, with high performance, old fool idiotspeak modulating filters.