RECORD OF THE PROCEEDINGS

OKANOGAN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

January 10, 2016


Meet & Greet – Public Defenders Office-Melissa MacDougall
DPA Albert Lin, Tanya Craig, Melissa MacDougall

Ms. MacDougall updated the board on the Public Defender’s office explaining the staffing levels, complaint processes, and history of her business. She stated the process that has been worked out with Okanogan County has worked well for her and provides the contacts as required. The case load standards were discussed and the system used to weight cases. The District Court cases are handled differently than Superior Court due to how many cases it handles. Case load standards do need to be picked up again and a weighted system utilized. Decriminalized the driving 3rd and is one main reason why the indigent defense standards were put into place. She explained there is a system in place to reduce certain operators depending on the history of that person. Mr. Lin explained public defense policy is not something the prosecutor would like to be involved in.

Ms. MacDougall discussed some glitches with the video surveillance systems utilized in the Jail. The public defender’s office has been in contact with the prosecutors’ office, replied Mr. Lin. Access to inmates is required. It is difficult to deal with a jail population when it is common knowledge that drugs are in the jail. Ms. Craig stated that random cell checks are being performed by the two drug dogs. Property crimes were discussed. Everyone is trying hard to try to improve, catch, and fix the problem.

Ms. MacDougall thanked the commissioners for their time and stated she is available via email should any of the board wish have questions. She would like to come back at a later date when her staff is available to introduce some of them to the commissioners. The Board thanked her for her work.

Gina McCoy member of the public came in about 9:40 a.m. to take notes on her computer.

Commissioners’ Staff Meeting
DPA Albert Lin, Tanya Craig, Debi Hilts

Ms. Craig would like commissioner direction on how the county and union will go forward in the Collective Bargaining process. Ms. Craig relayed that Teamsters suggested the county provide PERC training if it does decide to handle the union stuff in house. Ms. Craig explained that Teamsters, Paul Parmley had previously emailed Ms. Craig with the PERC info and suggested a cost savings if the county dealt with the union in house rather than working with outside counsel. Commissioner Hover would like to ensure the employees are comfortable with that direction first. HR must also be comfortable with the responsibility. He would like to cut costs that won’t hurt our legal position. Mr. Lin stated we are talking about matters that do not necessarily need legal analysis. Ms. Hilts stated all communications regarding Human Resources issues went through Rocky Jackson even the simplest grievances were discussed with him. Mr. Lin replied that one of the concerns was that we were dealing with potential litigation and he would not want his team speaking to the other team about privileged information that could be used against the county. Discretion is very important. The attorney is not required to speak for the county but does pay attention to the crafting of certain documents with the correct language. Commissioner Branch stated he would like to look into the PERC training. In the past this has been done in house and he doesn’t believe we would be in any worse condition if performed in house than we are now.

Ms. Craig then explained how she and her staff would approach in house negotiations if the board so directed.

She discussed how her staff currently deals with the different employment claims and issues. She handles sensitive issues and runs things by Mr. Lin on a regular basis. Ms. Hilts deals with the employee side of things. Commissioner Hover would like to receive the thoughts from the shop stewards about this situation before recommending a course of action. Ms. Hilts stated she is waiting for the updated list of shop stewards and will contact them once it is received to discuss and get their thoughts on the situation.

Commissioner Branch stated the biggest challenge for the new board was the budget issue and at every front he would like to determine whether costs can be reduced. This could be one of those areas. He is not saying never use Attorney Rocky Jackson again he is saying if the job can get done legally without him, he would rather the county consider that. The board would like staff to contact Mr. Parmley to let him know the board would like to move forward towards performing in house negotiations.

Ms. Craig explained the criminal justice contracts and what criminal justice charges the county can bill the cities for. The county is not allowed to charge the cities for felonies. We are now housing around 80-90% felony population whereas before we were housing 80-90% misdemeanors population which we are allowed to charge the cities for. Right now we charge less than $60 per day for housing the inmates and it does not include the true cost of repairs, maintenance or required improvements. We are not receiving the true cost of incarceration from the cities for keeping those people in our jail. Commissioner Hover asked if we were to increase our rate to $90 per day if that would cover the actual costs. Ms. Craig stated we would need to perform an analysis of the Jail infrastructure to justify raising the charge. Ms. Craig stated there is also the matter of a contract with the cities that outlines what can be charged and what is credited. We would have to open the agreement back up in order to address the actual costs. A cost analysis is needed to justify raising the daily rate.

Ms. Craig is working on the crime rap policy through travelers insurance and they want to know what the county’s individual max cash exposure is. Ms. Craig is gathering that data to send off to Martin Morris. She is working on the public official bond paperwork too which the new commissioners need to complete.

Ms. Craig reported a vehicle take home policy is being drafted for departments that allow employees to take home a county vehicle. It is considered a fringe benefit and a log must be kept and the employee must claim the miles on their tax paperwork as the benefit is taxable.

Ms. Craig provided the board with the Risk Pool open loss run report and discussed the information. Attached.

Ms. Hilts gave her HR update on recruitments. She is conducting interviews for fairgrounds facilities position. There are five applicants. Once the top two are selected the commissioners will need to choose for final selection and hiring.

Discussion- Supplemental Appropriations/Transfer Process-Finance Committee
Laurie Thomas, Cari Hall, Leah McCormack, and Gina McCoy taking notes on her computer.

Commissioner DeTro stated he just got off the phone with Robert Weidner regarding PILT payments. If Secure Rural Schools (SRS) goes away our PILT payment will go up but western states that have been getting PILT will come back to where all the timber resource funds will shift to Northwest as those counties have all the timber. Those with limited timber won’t get very much and if that happens there will be a heck of a battle. Either it will be status quo or we get a big chunk. SRS attached to 2016 payment at the same rate as 2017. SRS will likely be the same and PILT will be the same in 2017. SRS has been coming in around $800,000 which is split between Public Works and the schools.

Ms. McCormack explained the reason for calling this meeting. She handed out the supplemental/transfer document. Now that the budget is adopted at the line item level all departments will be required to submit the form to the commissioner’s office. Already we have received one for $29 and the fear is that departments won’t look at the whole year for one transfer, rather than submitting several for the same line item throughout the year. Ms. Thomas would like to see the form revised a bit to receive the necessary information about why the transfer is needed and how much might be needed for the remaining year. The budget adjustments must be in the form of a resolution.

Ms. McCormack suggested the departments come to the table to hear and learn the proper process and form for the budget requests. She also suggested meeting with the departments in June or prior to June in order to keep better track of the budget and expenses.

Commissioner Hover would like to see every Department head attend a meeting to learn the Board’s direction and desire for open communication. Ms. McCormack stated you can call a meeting but you cannot make them all come to the table. In past not everyone comes, if we have a meeting we should have all the Department Heads attend or have the administrative staff there. Commissioner Hover suggested a doodle poll, which would go out with several dates that work for us so that the Dept. heads have some options. The poll would show a percentage of people that could attend. The poll would need to be crafted well ahead of time before schedules are set.

Update Public Works—Josh Thomson/Ben Rough
Josh Thomson, Ben Rough

Engineer Thomson updated the board on items listed on his agenda. Commissioner Hover asked if it needs to be done in the interest of the County. Admin Rough explained that there is much development happening around the Harmony Heights. The road is continuing to be an issue and would have been on the Public Works radar to address. The funding is not there to address it. If they are able to put the asphalt on the road we can accomplish the other. Commissioner Branch stated because it worked well there would be other requests and this could set a precedence. The reality is the other way around stated Engineer Thomson. They have helped the county way more than the county has helped them. An MOU will be crafted to address.

Current Projects
Engineer Thomas reported that B-3 and B-15 bridge girders are set to arrive Thursday due to weather setbacks.

There is not much to report on the Moses Meadows Rd.. It is not known if logging is occurring on the road, but it is frozen and relatively smooth. The Plans are to be sent for approval with construction beginning in April.

Maintenance and road conditions were discussed. A resolution was provided for commissioner review regarding road restrictions.

John Wyss member of the public arrived at 11:45 a.m.

Cherokee Road was discussed. The city of Omak was fine with whatever is recommended by the council and the county in terms of snow plowing. Commissioner Branch stated there are areas that are likely done without county knowledge.

Overtime hours were discussed in the amount of 196.5 hours being charged for just this year with 130 of those hours due to snow fall on Sunday and the Holiday. There is no overtime charged in Area 3. Call-out circumstances was discussed. Engineer Thomson would like to submit a press release to the media and to dispatchers so the information on how the county responds on the policy. The board would like to review the policy first. Engineer Thomson stated the policy in online at the Public Works website and asked the board to submit edits to him for revision of the policy.

The County’s process for road vacations has not changed. Engineer Thomson stated that Car Tar road needs a decision. There are several houses on that road, and it is a good road right now with CCT maintaining it. We have an agreement with BIA for snow plowing. It is not the county’s road and the rights were not given for this road and do not apply on the reservation. It is a road that is on the 1955 map but is not a county road and has not been maintained by the county. This could be resolved by adopting a resolution to clear it up as he doesn’t believe the county ever claimed/owned the road. Mr. Wyss suggested the county follow the CRAB board recommendation regarding the road. Engineer Thomson stated a road vacation would be the cleanest process to use. There are three roads the CCT do not have issue with, but this road does present some issues.

The NEPA process will take a while for those roads that require it. Commissioner Branch would like a separate map of just the forest service roads proposed for reconciliation. Engineer Thomson stated there wasn’t a separate map created to show just those roads.

Engineer Thomson reported that an approval for going out to bid for the ER&R for the signs project will be forthcoming. The board would like to know which roads are grandfathered in. That conversation should happen regarding the list of roads.

The OCOG meeting selected the planning agent; the county will pay them and be reimbursed. The contract will be signed by the Engineer. Okanogan County Transportation Committee will meet to discuss funds and future.

Mr. Rough reported the Public Works financial staff has found the work difficult and it has been a real hurdle for them, but now with the additional staffing, the department will make some significant changes that will address some of the concerns. He further expressed the Solid Waste Manager, Heidi Connelly, who started yesterday. The previous manager, George, who is now Road Way Manger will be training her. He is spending time shadowing her at the landfill. Her background is in Solid Waste for 10 years, but she has just left a financial manager position with some HR back ground too. Commissioner Branch asked if that experience will help with Solid Waste Management Plan? Mr. Rough replied that those types of components will be new. But other staff will help draft the Solid Waste Plan. She will be involved with the budget process next year and she will help iron out some of those issues.

Mr. Rough explained that Commissioner Branch’s seat on the SWAC was due to representing the City of Oroville. A replacement will need to be found and appointed.

Mr. Rough gave an update on the leachate lagoon issue. A request for another operator may be submitted in the near future for staff who is dedicated to spreading and keeping the levels down specifically for the leachate. He explained he is working with the City of Okanogan to see if they can take some of our liquid leachate, it is currently being tested to determine if they can take it. He will continue to update the board as the process goes. The buildup of leachate was due to the sprinkler system on the cells and the solids not being spread around so the water seeped down into the cell and soaked up by the garbage and that process was not dealing with the problem. The liquid really needed to evaporate and due to staffing levels there weren’t enough bodies to do the work. Solid Waste is able to save funds that carryover, but having additional bodies will dip into those savings.

Mr. Rough reported that there are other things on his agenda that will be earmarked for future discussion. The agenda listed items that he wanted to be more thorough explaining because a decision will likely be needed later. Public Works would like to hear from the board about the future of the Public works admin building and asked if the VG building was going to be remodeled for providing one stop for county business. That will need to be discussed at a future meeting.

The Conconully Sewer Utility was discussed. The county has initiated discussion with the city for the city to take over the system. There are two systems one owned by city one by county. The Mayor did not wish to commit at the time in 2016 but he does support it. The county is saving funds; about $104,000 has been saved so far. We pay a discharge fee to the city. There is hesitancy by the town over taking it on.

There are four printers Public Works will be obtaining quotes for lease. They are looking at replacing them.

Mr. Rough stated Teamsters rep. Paul Parmley, contacted him about union negotiations being conducted in-house. Commissioner Hover discussed the segregation of HR and HR Director and how those meetings would be handled by them. He would like to understand how employee stewards feel about it so everyone is comfortable with it.

Commissioner DeTro left for lunch at 12:35 p.m.

Commissioners would like PW to continue working on the road transfers.

Commissioners adjourned at 1:46 p.m. to Public Health.

Board of Health-Public Health Building 1234 S.2nd Ave, Okanogan
Commissioners attended the board of health meeting.

Voucher Certification – Methow EMS District
Commissioner Branch moved to adjourn as the BOCC and reconvene as the Methow EMS District. Motion was seconded all were in favor motion carried.

Commissioner Branch moved to approve the Methow EMS vouchers in the amount of $54,920.50. Motion was seconded and carried.

Commissioner Branch moved to adjourn as the Methow EMS District and reconvene as the BOCC. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.

Isabelle Spohn member of the public taking notes on her computer.

Motion - Voucher Approval - Commissioners
Vouchers certified and audited by the Auditing Officer as required by RCW 42.24.080 and those expense reimbursement claims certified as required by RCW 42.24.090 have been recorded on a list, and made available to the Board. As of this date, the Board did vote, by unanimous vote, to approve the County’s vouchers including the Current Expense, Misc. and Public Works in the amount of $164,154.40. Warrant numbers as cited on the attached blanket voucher list. Motion seconded and carried.

Discussion Affordable Housing Letter OCCAC Lael Duncan
Ms. Duncan came in to discuss the 30 day notice letter the county sent to OCCAC regarding the 2004 Affordable Housing Agreement termination. Ms. Duncan stated the letter requires OCCAC to remit the funds currently being held by OCCAC to the county for county disbursement.

Ms. Duncan stated OCCAC is dealing with a lot of homelessness right now and requested the board rescind the letter and work towards moving funds already collected by OCCAC which were allocated and approved in their meeting November 30. The Clerk of the Board stated the board approved the proposals from the Homeless Housing fund, not Affordable Housing Funds and the contracts will reflect that. Ms. Duncan wishes to work with the county and does not have a problem with the county administering the funds but they do have the funds obligated. Commissioner DeTro stated the way he understood it was that the Housing Authority is the authority that is actually responsible for administering the funds and eligibility requirements.

Ms. Duncan provided the legislation. Commissioner Branch thought the letter of the previous Board should have waited. Commissioner Hover explained the current process used for Homeless Housing would be the same process used for Affordable Housing. OCCAC has held the money for a long time, but OCCAC has not used the funds and over $200,000 has built up in the account. Ms. Duncan said they have had so many requests in 2016 that they just haven’t been able supply the service. She stated the Administrative fee will have to come out of it too. Commissioner DeTro stated if 30 days is not enough time to remit a check for the amount held by OCCAC then the county would consider that. Ms. Duncan stated 60 days would be helpful. They are in the process of closing out 2016 and she is going to be gone for a while and will not be in the office consistently. Commissioner DeTro does not want to be outside the State Auditor’s purview. A letter allowing 60 days will be drafted for commissioner approval.

Meet & Greet- Noxious Weed Office –Anna Lyon
Anna Lyon, Larry Hudson

Ms. Lyon provided the board with a packet with her program information. She discussed the different weeds they manage. They will ask the State Weed Board to classify for control of puncture vine and longspur?? Ms. Lyon explained the different funding sources and programs they administer through her office. She discussed the relationship with Canada. She discussed the aquatic program and permitting obtained and which lakes are scheduled for control of milfoil and algae growths. She asked if the board had any question they are welcome to stop by anytime.

Discussion-Destination Marketing Organization – OCTC
Carolyn Davis, Steve Devin, Arnie Marchand, Isabelle Spohn

Ms. Davis stated OCTC discussed their desire to meet with the board to go over plans for 2017 and try and get on the same page as the county prior to the contract being drafted so that it contains clarity and specifics on what the expectations of OCTC are.

Mr. Devin, member of LTAC, stated the contract still needs to be drafted. There were some points in the contract that were up in the air. His concern is that OCTC keep going and not be stuck in lala land. His hope is that the contract be expedited. The Clerk of the Board stated all the contracts should be by the end of January. The action items were sent to the board and the LTAC would like to know where they are at with that. The Clerk of the Board explained the contract should work for both entities and should be very clear. Commissioner Hover stated any other thing that is contentious should be known. Jen Tate stated she wished to discuss what the county expectations are.

Ms. Davis stated the contract did not address what they wanted to do. The back of the contract scope of work should

Doing it at the end of the year Jen Tate state they missed out on some of the advertising and discussed that a two year contract would be best so that winter ads can be paid for when they are done. Commissioner Hover stated we have a yearly budget and contracts must choose a point in time. A multiple year contract would benefit OCTC and would keep things rolling.

Mr. Devin discussed the reporting the county is required to report on. There should be something that is workable for both sides. It needs to be something that is obtainable that OCTC can do. They can tell us what they can provide.

Carolyn stated it would be difficult to breakdown the numbers of tourist each district was visited by. The questions were not good questions to quantify what OCTC does. Ms. Tate stated the snow season is off the charts. Commissioner Hover asked what the plan is for the Oroville area. OCTC markets the assets that exist to demographics that fit. The other piece is to develop the tourism. They need to work together to create a more robust tourism county wide. To help LTAC and commissioners to create a tourism plan. She discussed a master plan which will cost more than we currently collect. It is to build more and how do we achieve that and all aspects of that. 

James?? Promotional material, maps etc…. five maps created by OCTC which have been out for years and extremely well used and in some ways the North county is overrepresented on the maps. There is nowhere to stay in North County. It is difficult to promote. Commissioner DeTro stated Commissioner Hover inherited from the previous commissioner. If a segment was missed for Winter Rec then why are the visitors off the chart? Ms. Tate stated they missed the Jan Feb and March ads and would not be realized till later. The gap was a concern. The funding process should continue even if the DMO contract isn’t worked out tonight. Commissioner Branch stated when reporting to the state the information they require but what does it mean? He further explained accountability the county could use. If there are individual businesses who do not believe they are getting what they expect then a discussion should be had. There are many who may not agree with the strategies utilized. The LTAC was made up of people who knew tourism. If OCTC asks for input and none is given, then don’t be mad later. OCTC has been in existence over 25 years. He doesn’t believe it appropriate to go with someone else when OCTC has been doing it this long. Why reinvent the structure asked James?? Commissioner Hover replied is it the county

Ms. Tate said there should be a group consensus for making the decisions. Commissioner Hover stated we are trying to get to a place where the contract is workable for both. We want to have focus on the direction we are going and in the contract we can outline the expectations. Ms. Tate stated a retreat would be a better place to come up with the solutions. The Hoteliers know what works and OCTC does work with them. Ms. Davis stated when LTAC looks at the application the Committee select those applications that fit with the overall county vision. Commissioner Branch explained the people who sit on the OCTC board who have something to do with tourism. Ms. Tate stated they can tell where there is a need for additional.

Commissioner Hover stated LTAC recommends allocation the board approves.

Commissioner Hover asked what the county is purchasing? Intellectual property was discussed.

Commissioner Branch relayed how he felt about the program. He doesn’t feel it should be done without consideration of the group.

Address worse case scenario should also be outlined in the contract. Commissioner DeTro stated we would have set back the program 5 years had the county changed DMO.

Grand Coulee Dam area member discussed concerns that grinds to a halt any advertising in her funding drys up. Commissioners further discussed the DMO contract and what that should include.

Commissioner Hover moved to go into executive session at 5:15 p.m. for 15 minutes inviting Tanya Craig and Orrick attorneys. Motion was seconded all were in favor, motion carried.

Approve Consent Agenda
Commissioner Hover moved to approve the consent agenda item1-10 as presented. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.
1. Approve Commissioners Proceedings January 3 & 4, 2017
2. Cattle Guard Franchise Relinquishment-Gebbers 45-74
3. Transmittal Letter Forte Architects, Inc –Fairgrounds Bathroom
4. Resolution 2-2017 Road Levy Shift
5. Resolution 3-2017 Current Expense Levy
6. Resolution 4-2017 Road Levy
7. Resolution 5-2017 Pest Control Assessment
8. Resolution 6-2017 Jr Taxing District Levy
9. Acknowledgment of Receipt -Refunds
10. Grant County Resolution 16-210-CC Appointing Gail Huntley NCR Library District



Commissioners adjourned at 5:00 p.m.