Image Link 10-27-2016

Summary BOCC Meeting- Oct 26 2016

-Consent agenda - approved:
Various vouchers/warrants; final payment for chip seal on Rd. 21 & 186
-Removed the Water Advisory Committee discussion from work/study session to be addressed at a later time.

Public comment:
1) Marlene Groves - disturbed that commissioners allowed an elected official attack a citizen's proposal when that citizen wasn't present. (Clerk Dallas Schroeder attacked Ms. Grove's citizen finance committee proposal at the BOCC meeting on 10/12/16 when Ms. Grove was not present to defend her presentation. Ms. Groves had presented her power point presentation to the public in September)
2) Victoria Thalimer - asked that we continue to set up the large room at the fairgrounds for BOCC meetings so we don't have the delay that occurred today and that we have room for all the citizens.

*Quarterly Public Trustee report: County treasurer Rick Pettit reported that foreclosures are increasing slightly year to date. Number of sales has decreased.

*Forsgren contract for county water study: Ric Morgan reported - $140,000 cost (grant from state for $120,000 - county matching funds $20,000). Severance taxes being reduced due to decrease in oil and gas production so funding for grants like this may be less available. Project has been reduced to 10 month timeline (from 12 month). All subcontractors identified at this point. Report to commissioners required every 10 weeks regarding progress/milestones. 3 public meetings mandated during project. Work product is owned by consultant; county would own completed study.

Public comment on this item - Susan Shick had questions about subcontractors not exceeding 30% of work (number is perhaps too high); concerns with proposal because of Will Koger's membership on WAC ("a seat at the table" when other bidders were not allowed this; perhaps opens the county to legal action); concerns about county management of this contract. Donna Ross - Forsgren contract should include more of the data analysis info to county. Gary Lauer - not approving this contract provides risk to county if it is stalled anymore.

Contract dated 10/21/16 approved by a vote of 2-1. Commissioner Ross voted against due to lack of confidence in process that was followed with this contract.

*New auditing firm: County Manager Ed Ehmann proposed change from Edie-Bailey to Rubin Brown; county received 4 bids; will save approximately $60,000. Commissioner Ross was unaware that an RFP for bids had even been executed - he just received spreadsheet 2 days ago so hasn't had sufficient time to research bidders. Contract with Rubin Brown approved 2-1 with Commissioner Ross dissenting.

*November 18, 2015 BOCC minutes still not available to public. Motion to hire a professional to transcribe this meeting failed due to Commissioners Rowland and Willcox's lack of support. Commissioner Rowland and Willcox believe that the audio suffices for citizens. Written meeting minutes of the 11/18/15 were presented in the past but not approved because they did not reflect an accurate representation of what took place at the meeting.

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Public comment on this item - Marlene Groves is very disappointed that this information is not available to public; it is clear that the commissioners are hiding information from citizens. Susan Shick - state statutes (CRS 30-10-309) and (CRS 24-6-402-(d)(i)) are clear that minutes are to be recorded in writing and timely; our county clerk refuses to do his statutory duty (currently delinquent on 12 sets of minutes dating back to April 2016); recommends that the BOCC hire a clerk to the board.

Bill Harris - thinks the county is doing a great job; criticized folks who are asking for more transparency and accountability.

*MOU for control of confidential data - has to do with sales tax information; agreement that state puts out that limits access to website for the purpose of controlling info (info can only be used for administration or enforcement of sales tax law). Treasurer Pettit currently is contact point for access to that website.

*Agate Prairie Conservation Legacy - letters of support for conservation easement passed; 3 ranching families in the county have applied.

*Tyler Technologies subscription agreement for clerk/recorder and assessor's offices - software annual fees of $110,000 each year for 5 years, subject to annual appropriations. County will continue to utilize these services.

Meeting adjourned to work/study session:
1) Videotaping meetings - Ed Ehmann said that they may start videotaping meetings (not live streaming); need to decide what constitutes official minutes. Ed will bring a proposal to the BOCC. This is "just a courtesy" per Ed Ehmann for BOCC and Planning Commission meetings, not a requirement.

2) BOCC minutes - Clerk Dallas Schroeder needs to be present for this discussion. BOCC meeting minutes are way behind.

3) Attorney Steve Larson's billing statement - BOCC initially approved $15,000 retainer; Commissioner Rowland says Larson has been doing legal work that wasn't agreed to by commissioners. We also currently have an open records request from a citizen requiring Larson's response (which means the county needs to pay more money to Larson's firm, after having already spent $30,000 with this legal firm). Commissioner Willcox stated that this conversation is not appropriate without Commissioner Ross being present (Ross had a previous commitment so could not attend study session). Willcox said that the citizen requiring the response has been satisfied with what he's received and needs no more per his open records request. Discussion followed concerning disengaging Steve Larson. Willcox proposed routing all attorney issues through the county attorney, Wade Gateley.

-Jill Duvall