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AUGUST 21 , 2006
AGENDA 
Catawba County Board of Commissioners Meeting 
Monday, August 21, 2006
Robert E. Hibbitts Meeting Room, 1924 Courthouse,
30 North College Avenue, Newton, NC

 

NOTE: The Board of Commissioners will hold an informational meeting regarding the County’s revaluation process from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. in the Robert E. Hibbitts Meeting Room. The Regular Board of Commissioners meeting will follow at 7:00 p.m.

1. Call to Order.

2. Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

3. Invocation.

4. Approval of Minutes from the Regular meeting of July 17, 2006, the Closed Session of July 17, 2006 and the Special Joint Session with Newton City Council of July 21, 2006.

5. Recognition of Special Guests.

6. Public Comment for items not on the agenda.

7. Presentations.


Presentation of Service Side Arms and Badges to Retiring Sheriff’s Deputies Linda B. Church and Henry Lee Johnson.

8. Public Hearings.


a. Unified Development Ordinance Public Hearing. Presented by Jacky Eubanks, Planning Director.


b. Public Hearing on the Adoption of New Official Zoning Maps based on Small Area Plans and Unified Development Ordinance. Presented by Jacky Eubanks, Planning Director.

9. Appointments.

10. Consent Agenda.


a. Hickory City Schools’ Request for Capital Funds Appropriation and Transfer.


b. Establishment of Human Papilloma Virus vaccine fee.


c. Establishment of Tetanus, Diphtheria and Pertussis vaccine fee.


d. Retirement Health Savings Plan-ICMA-RC.


e. Revision to Catawba County Code, Chapter 28, Article X, Operations Standards for Drivers of Vehicles Used for County Business.


f. Waiver of Permit Fees for 2006 Greater Hickory Classic.


g. Tax refund requests.

11. Departmental Reports.


a. Utilities and Engineering:


Wastewater Treatment Services Contracts. Presented by Barry B. Edwards, Director, Utilities and Engineering.


12. Other Items of business.

13. Attorneys’ Report.

14. Manager’s Report.

15. Adjournment.

 

PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES
Individuals needing assistance should contact the County Clerk at 465-8990 within a reasonable time prior to the meeting. A telecommunication device for the deaf (TDD) is located in the Government Center and can be reached by dialing 465?8200. Access to the 1924 Courthouse for individuals with disabilities is at the south side (“A” Street). The elevator is located at the north end of the building. Participation in public meetings is without regard to race, creed, religion, national origin, sex, age, color, or disability.

INFOTALK/INTERNET
The Catawba County Telephone Information System will allow you to use your touch tone telephone to obtain current information on Catawba County 24 hours a day. Information is updated on a regular basis. Dial 465-8468 and INFOTALK will direct your questions with easy to understand instructions. Reach Catawba County on the Internet at http://www.catawbacountync.gov.

CALENDAR
The September Board of Commissioners meetings will take place on Tuesday, September 5, 2006 at 9:30 a.m. and on Monday, September 18, 2006 at 7:00 p.m.

PREVIEW OF COUNTY COMMISSION AGENDA
MONDAY, AUGUST 21, 2006, 7 P.M.
ROBERT E. HIBBITTS MEETING ROOM
1924 COURTHOUSE, NEWTON, N.C.

The Catawba County Board of Commissioners will hold the first of two public hearings on 1) the text of a proposed Catawba County Unified Development Ordinance or UDO, which would combine all of the County's existing regulations concerning land use and development into a single, coordinated ordinance and 2) zoning maps that would be put in place under the proposed UDO; and consider contracts with the City of Hickory and Town of Mooresville to provide wastewater treatment services to the Southeastern Catawba County area, when the Board meets at 7 p.m. on Monday, August 21, 2006, in the Robert E. Hibbitts Meeting Room on the second floor of the 1924 Courthouse in Newton.

The Board will also consider a request from the Hickory Public Schools to transfer funds already budgeted, and appropriate funds as an advance on the Hickory Public Schools capital outlay funds for fiscal year 2007-2008, for the completion of the renovation of the former American Legion building for use at Hickory High School; the establishment of fees for the Health Department for administering a new vaccine for Human Papilloma Virus, which can lead to cervical cancer and for a new Tetanus, Diphtheria and Pertussis vaccine; a new policy allowing County employees to defer a portion of their pay, on a tax-free basis, to pay for medical and other allowable expenses after age 55 or retirement, as allowed by the Internal Revenue Service and at no cost to the County; a change in the County Code to update operations standards for drivers of vehicles used for County business; a set of tax refunds; and the waiver of building permit fees associated with the Greater Hickory Golf Classic. The Board will also participate in a ceremony presenting badges and service side arms to two retiring deputy sheriffs.

Note: The Board will also meet at 6 pm on August 21, in the Robert E. Hibbitts Meeting Room of the 1924 Courthouse, to receive information on the 2007 property revaluation process.

PRESENTATIONS
The Board will recognize retiring Sheriff’s Deputies Linda B. Church and Henry Lee Johnson with the traditional presentation of their service side arms and badges. In accordance with North Carolina General Statutes 20-187.2, the Board will consider declaring as surplus the service side arms and badges of Deputies Church and Johnson and present these service items to them on the occasion of their retirements. Deputy Church has worked for the Sheriff’s Office for 30 years while Deputy Johnson has worked for the Sheriff’s Office for 24 years.

PUBLIC HEARINGS
A. The Board will hold a public hearing on the text of a proposed Unified Development Ordinance. NOTE: There is considerable additional information available at tonight's meeting on the proposed UDO, in the form of other hand outs on the same table at this preview of the entire Board of Commissioners meeting.

The Unified Development Ordinance will combine all of the County's existing regulations concerning land use and development into a single, coordinated ordinance. The draft Unified Development Ordinance is based on the recommendations of seven Small Area Plans, created by groups of citizens appointed by the Board of Commissioners to develop long-range plans for their respective communities, with input from citizens in their area. A UDO Steering Committee composed of citizens and professionals in related areas reviewed existing Catawba County policies on zoning and subdivision regulations and administrative procedures, and worked to combine them into a user-friendly, flexible ordinance, which is consistent throughout and organized in a manner that will make it easy to use. The County's UDO will only apply to areas outside of cities and towns and their planning jurisdictions.

The draft UDO has been available for public review since late May on Catawba County's internet site at www. catawbacountync.gov. Users should look for a link to the UDO information at the center of the page and will be taken to another page with a great deal of additional information about the proposed UDO. Copies of the proposed UDO are also available for review at all Catawba County libraries and the City of Hickory's Patrick Beaver Library.

The Catawba County Planning Board unanimously voted to recommend adoption of the proposed UDO following a public hearing at its meeting on August 7, with a recommendation that existing single-wide manufactured homes may be replaced with another single-wide manufactured home in any case, not just in hardship situations. A series of meetings with stakeholder groups, and two public meetings, were held in June and July 2006 to provide information on the UDO and offer citizens the opportunity to comment on the draft ordinances. More than 150 persons came to a series of informational sessions held at the Catawba County Government Center on August 2, 3, 4 and 7, and designed to provide citizens with a chance to talk one-on-one with County staff about how the UDO would effect their property. The Board of Commissioners has scheduled a second public hearing on the proposed UDO for its meeting beginning at 7 p.m. on Monday, September 18, 2006 also in the Robert E. Hibbitts Meeting Room of the 1924 Courthouse in Newton.

B. The Board will hold a public hearing on the zoning maps that would be put in place with the passage of the proposed Unified Development Ordinance and is scheduled to hold a second public hearing on the proposed zoning maps at its meeting at 7 p.m. on Monday, September 18 in the Robert E. Hibbitts Meeting Room of the 1924 Courthouse in Newton.

CONSENT AGENDA
A. The Board will consider a request from the Hickory Public Schools Board of Education to transfer funds from two existing capital projects, and for an appropriation of funds from the Schools Capital Projects fund balance, to complete renovations to the former American Legion building. The building will be used to relocate Hickory High School's auto mechanics classes and provide auxiliary gymnasium space for the school's physical education and wrestling programs. The amount needed to complete the project is $2,583,033. This exceeds the revenues available from County appropriations ($1,150,000), private donations received and pledged, ($498,470), and funding from the City of Hickory, ($200,000), leaving a balance of $734,563 needed for the project.

The Hickory Public Schools Board of Education has requested a transfer of $125,000 from the balance remaining in the completed Grandview Middle School project and $100,000 from funds set aside for replacement and repair of the Jenkins Elementary School HVAC project in the next fiscal year. These transfers would result in a balance of $509,563 still being needed to award the bid. The Hickory Public Schools Board of Education has requested that these funds be appropriated as an advance on their capital outlay allocation for FY 2007/08. The system's funding for capital outlay has been about $1 million annually over the past few years. Staff and the Board's Finance and Personnel Subcommittee recommend that, if the Board approves these requests, it is with the understanding that the Hickory Public Schools' FY 2007/08 allocation would be reduced to repay the advance, leaving enough funds to cover $250,000 for the Jenkins HVAC project and approximately $250,000 in annual per capita funding for small projects and technology. This means the $100,000 that has been set aside annually for the past three years for asbestos abatement at Hickory High would be delayed. If, at the time of the scheduled replacement of the Jenkins HVAC system, the system appears to be in good working order, that replacement could again be postponed and those funds could be used for asbestos abatement. The Board's Finance and Personnel Subcommittee recommends the requested funds transfer and appropriation be approved, as outlined above.

B. The Board will consider a request from the Catawba County Board of Health and Health Director to establish a fee for a vaccine for Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). HPV infection is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States, with approximately 20 million Americans currently infected. Each year, an additional 6.2 million people become newly infected. As many as half of those infected are adolescents and young adults, ages 15-24 years. HPV is of public health importance because persistent infection with certain types of HPV can lead to cervical cancer, one of the most common cancers in women worldwide. Certain types of HPV also have been associated with other, less common cancers. Moreover, HPV types can cause genital warts and, rarely, respiratory tract warts in children. On June 8, 2006, an HPV vaccine was licensed by the Food and Drug Administration for use in females, ages 9-26 years. Another HPV vaccine is in the final stages of clinical testing, but not yet licensed. These vaccines offer a promising new approach to the prevention of HPV and associated conditions. The fee for providing the HPV vaccine will be $138 per dose, a fee based on the actual vaccine cost and related administrative costs. The vaccine should be delivered through a series of three intra-muscular injections over a six-month period (at 0, 2, and 6 months), bringing the total fee for the course of treatment to $414. The Finance and Personnel Subcommittee recommends the Board approve the establishment of this fee.

C. The Board will consider a request from the Catawba County Board of Health and Health Director to establish a fee for a new vaccine for tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis (TdaP). Pertussis is a highly contagious respiratory tract infection. Although most children are protected against pertussis by vaccination during childhood, immunity wanes over time and leaves adolescents and adults unprotected. In 2004, U.S. adults 19–64 years of age accounted for 27% of the more than 25,000 reported pertussis cases. The true number of cases among adults 19-64 years of age is likely much higher, estimated at 600,000 annually.

A Tetanus Toxoid, Reduced Diphtheria Toxoid and Acellular Pertussis Vaccine, Adsorbed (TdaP) product known as ADACELTM was licensed by the Food and Drug Administration on June 10, 2005 as a single dose booster vaccine for persons 11-64 years of age to provide protection against tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis. On October 26, 2005, the Centers for Disease Control's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommended routine use of a single dose of TdaP for adults 19-64 years of age. The ACIP also recommended TdaP for adults who have close contact with infants under 12 months of age. On February 22, 2006, ACIP recommended TdaP for health-care personnel as soon as feasible. The fee for providing the TdaP vaccine will be $49 per dose, a fee based on the actual vaccine cost and related administrative costs. The Finance and Personnel Subcommittee recommends the Board approve the establishment of this fee.

D. The Board will consider offering a deferred compensation plan allowing employees to defer a portion of their pay, on a tax-free basis, to pay for medical and other allowable expenses after age 55 or retirement. This type of deferred compensation plan is now allowed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and has no cost to the County. The County has offered a 457 Deferred Compensation Retirement Plan through the International City/County Management Association's Retirement Corporation (ICMA-RC) since the early 1980s, which allows employees to defer pay on a pre-tax basis that may be used for retirement. Catawba County was one of the first organizations in North Carolina to offer this plan.

In 2005, ICMA-RC received written approval from the IRS to offer a similar deferred compensation plan to be used for retiree medical expenses, including health premiums and other expenses, post-employment. The program would allow employees to set aside funds on a pre-tax basis to pay for medical expenses during retirement, or after age 55, for other eligible expenses which are very similar to those generally covered under the IRS flexible spending account. Deferred funds are invested as the employee chooses, with investment options similar to those offered in the 457 plan. Investment earnings are tax-deferred. Withdrawals made under eligibility definitions are tax-free as well and offer a substantial tax advantage to participants. Eligible expenses are medical costs that would otherwise be deductible to the employee on his or her individual income tax return, such as health premiums, COBRA premiums, dental premiums, out-of-pocket medical costs, etc. The plan is flexible to meet employee needs and provide them with choices; spouses and dependents are eligible for tax-free distributions for covered medical expenses; there is no forfeiture at death, any remaining funds may be transferred to the spouse and dependents; and it provides a benefit for employees who retire but must pay for, or don't qualify for, the County's Retiree Health Benefit and covers what insurance does not at retirement. The Finance and Personnel Subcommittee recommends the Board approve this Retirement Health Savings Plan.

E. The Board will consider an amendment to the County Code, Chapter 28, Article X, Operations Standards for Drivers of Vehicles Used for County Business. In 2004 all parts of this chapter were revised except for driver operations. Since that revision, parts of Article X are no longer applicable. The County no longer budgets a high-mileage payment and a section of the article referring to that payment would be removed. The vehicles addressed and covered in the article would be expanded. More vehicles are now assigned to individuals and the proposed amendments would address the responsibilities of those who are assigned vehicles, and it would clarify and expand on the County's ability to check driver's license records of current employees. Volunteers who may transport clients on behalf of the County will also be covered under this article.

F. The Board will consider a waiver of applicable permit fees for the 2006 Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn. On July 28, 2006, the County received a request from Peter Fisch, Tournament Manager, to waive permit fees for the golf tournament, to be held at the Rock Barn Golf and Spa, September 25-October 1, 2006. The request to waive permit fees is applicable only to the section of the Catawba County Fee Schedule entitled, "Utilities and Engineering, Building Permit Fees". Approval will not negate permit issuance and inspections to protect the safety, health and welfare of citizens and visitors to Catawba County. The waived permit fees are estimated to be $5000. Catawba County's support for the Greater Hickory Golf Classic also includes the providing of Sheriff's Deputies and EMS Personnel to assist at the tournament. The Policy and Public Works Subcommittee recommends the Board waive the applicable permit fees.

G. The Board will consider two tax refund requests totaling $931.34. Records have been checked and these refunds verified, so the Tax Collector recommends approval. Under North Carolina General Statute 105-381, a taxpayer who has paid his or her taxes may request a refund in writing for an amount paid through error.

DEPARTMENTAL REPORTS

UTILITIES AND ENGINEERING
The Board will consider entering into two separate contracts, one an amendment to two existing contracts with the City of Hickory and one with the Town of Mooresville, NC to provide wastewater treatment services to the Southeastern Catawba County service area. Wastewater service to the southeastern area of Catawba County has been analyzed by Catawba County at many different times over the past twenty years. Two critical factors for constructing a sewer system in the area were identified: 1) a means of wastewater treatment, and 2) the development/customer base needed to fund & support infrastructure. The proposed contract with the City of Hickory would address the means of wastewater treatment, while the proposed contract with Mooresville would serve as a backup provider of treatment in the near-term and offer options for expanded services, if needed, over the long-term.

Crescent Resources and MAG Land Development LLC have proposed several significant developments in southeast Catawba County. A proposed Key Harbor Subdivision would include approximately 1,500 residential units, most being single family with a small percentage as attached single family, located between Island Point Road and Molly’s Backbone Road. A proposed village center, located near the intersection of NC Highway 150 and Slanting Bridge Road, would include commercial, retail, office, institutional and residential uses. The quality, quantity, and pace of the proposed development is sufficient to bear the cost of both a wastewater collection system infrastructure and a wastewater treatment infrastructure and capacity purchase, based on sound engineering estimates, and included in the proposed amendments of existing contracts between Catawba County and the City of Hickory.

The Board will be asked to consider approving amendments to two existing contracts with the City of Hickory to purchase 750,000 gallons per day sewer capacity in the existing Catawba plant, along with 100,000 gallons per day in the Henry Fork plant, through the year 2043. The capacity and corresponding County waste collection lines and pump stations will allow sewer service initially for the Key Harbor and Village Center properties, as well as Sherrills Ford Elementary School. Additional development will be served in the future as lines are able to be extended, and if capacity is available. The initial step in the contract amendments calls for the joint selection of an engineer to design an expansion which will be needed at the Catawba plant, after which the City and County will jointly decide whether to move forward with the project. The design process is expected to take approximately one year. The contract amendments also anticipate the joint expansion of the Catawba plant when its initial capacity is committed. The joint expansion of the Catawba plant will be necessary to meet the County’s 750,000 gallons per day treatment needs. The proposed Hickory contract amendments continue the County’s working relationship and partnership with the City. As is the case currently with water, Hickory will service and maintain the County’s collection system.

All customers located within the service area will be charged the same rates and treated as comparable customers located outside the corporate limits of the City of Hickory. Unless otherwise agreed to by the County and the City, the rates charged to customers located within the service area will not be more than double the rates charged to customers located within the corporate limits of the City of Hickory for similar services, unless agreed to by both the City and the County. The estimated cost of the County Collection System to the Hickory-Catawba Wastewater Treatment Plant is $14,663,305 and the estimated cost for the 750,000 gallon per day expansion of the Hickory-Catawba Wastewater Treatment Plant is $3,750,000.

The Town of Mooresville has offered 750,000 gallons per day of existing wastewater treatment capacity for future wastewater treatment needs. Although staff's analysis has determined that the contract with the City of Hickory is far more cost-effective for the County, long-term, staff and the Board's Policy and Public Works Subcommittee recommend the contract with the Town of Mooresville be entered into to provide a backup for treatment services in the near-term and give Catawba County options for expansion of services if needed over the long term. Under the terms of the proposed contract, Catawba County would pay the Town of Mooresville $400,000 whenever wastewater begins to flow from Catawba County to Mooresville, with a second increment of $400,000 due when the 90-day average wastewater flow from Catawba County to Mooresville is 250,000 gallons per day, and a third increment of $600,000 due when the 90-day average wastewater flow from Catawba County to Mooresville is 500,000 gallons per day.

The Board's Policy and Public Works Subcommittee recommends the Board approve the proposed amendments to two existing contracts with the City of Hickory and a forty-year contract with the Town of Mooresville for 750,000 gallons per day of wastewater treatment, as outlined above.

CONTACT: DAVE HARDIN, PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER 828-465-8464

 

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