Humboldt County Citizens Advisory Committee on Measure Z Expenditures, Meeting of 2019-12-12

I’d like to welcome everyone who took
the time to join us today. Is there any desire on part of any of the members the
committee to modify the agenda? Staff? Okay seeing none. We’ll move forward as
presented. This would be the opportunity for the public to comment on any non
agenda items, so if you’d like to make a comment or advise the Committee or a
Member on an item not currently on the agenda please come forward. Seeing none,
we’ll move on to the discussion items first of all is the approval of the 9-12-
2019 agenda or action summary, excuse me, minutes or action summary, any
corrections or comments? We would then entertain a motion for approval. We have
a motion to approve this action summary. Is there a second? I second. Second. Any
discussion? All those in favor? Aye Opposed? Okay motion carries.
Okay County Administrative Office updates? We do have a few updates from
this past week and just some other items that have come up with the County
Administrative Office. Okay, my name is Neftali Rubio-Mills. I’m the Senior
Administrative Analyst with the County Administrative Office. Is that better?
okay and so firstly just wanted to mention that we did take all MOU’s to
the Board and all of them were approved in their you know current final format
by them in November and so that piece is is all set
and then just a reminder of the staffing transitions we have coming up I will be
going on maternity leave early January and as you can see Alicia has taken a
step back and will hope to I think remain a little less hands-on but of
course is there as a support person and Fiona Wilson will be transitioning to
your main point of contact going forward we will have another support staff
Vanessa Erickson who I believe, I don’t know if this committee specifically has
worked with her but she will be kind of filling in as is more of a clerical like
admin support role so she might come in at some point in the meeting so we can
introduce you so those are just sort of housekeeping things to let you know and
then the last bit of business from our office is that we took first quarter
before the board just this Tuesday and we did have just over $400,000 I think it
was $430,000 dollars in the Measure Z fund and the
board did elect to distribute that to roads, so that happened on Tuesday, so I
just wanted to give you a heads up about that as well. So that’s all of the
updates from our office. Did you have questions about any of those? Next item would be consideration of a
potential approval of a carry forward policy. Yes, so you have copies of that
carry forward policy in your packets but I’ll bring it up here. The
intention of the policy we’ve in the past allowed carry forward and and
imagine we will continue to do so but it’s been managed more on a case by case
basis. The intent of the policy is to provide just an an equitable way of
approaching these requests and just to provide some consistency and and and a
policy to back that consistency up, so we came up with this policy that we felt
was pretty fair, we asked that the applicants I assume you’ve been able to
read it but that that the applicants come before the close of the budget
cycle, that the requests to be to carry forward $5,000 – equal to – five
thousand dollars or more, so anything below that would not be eligible for
carrying forward and that the need for carry forward still fits within the
scope of the original application. We hope to bring this to the Board with
first quarter, but wanted to make sure you guys had a chance to see it and give
feedback first. So that’s this opportunity here so if you have any
questions or feedback for me, we can make active changes so I’ll let you I’ll
hand it over to you for that. Question about just language use, in the Section A
criteria or approval in a paragraph – I think I understand the intent but I
wonder if the language follows the intent. It says approval for Carry Forward
shall be granted by the County Administrative Officer or designee,
wouldn’t the preferable language be MAY be approved? Or shall is a directive and
it would seem to imply that there was no alternative but to approve the request
and I don’t think that’s our intent so my suggestion would be we substitute the
word shall with may or some other permissive nomenclature. If that’s preferable to you I think we
can do that as well. Any others? Any other comments or questions? Would there be a potential motion than
to approve the carry forward procedure with the modification noted here? We have
a motion. Is there a second? Rich seconds. Any discussion?
Public comment on this particular topic? Good afternoon, Tom Mattson, Director of
Public Works for the County. I have a simple comment on item B1, the minimum
amount to carry forward. I would I recommend that you consider the
possibility of a funding amount that kicks that in, many of our smaller grants
may need a thousand or two thousand or three thousand that needs to be carried
forward, like our Willow Creek group that get very small grants and that one, two,
three, four thousand may be very critical for them to complete their projects so
to consider something like if you’ve got an award over fifty thousand, maybe
the limits five thousand, but for some of those smaller groups, if they have a very
valid reason for moving that money forward, and it’s under five thousand
that could be problematic. Thank you. Okay. Staff could you address where the five
thousand dollar limitation, is it a operational consideration? Or where did
it come from? Sure, it is, but also it seems that the trend of that we’ve noticed where
the smaller amounts are being asked for it’s simply that the work just hasn’t
been done and so we’re carrying forward a thousand dollars or or less year after
year and it just seems to be more of an it’s an administrative thing where it
doesn’t seem like there’s any large barriers to taking action and spending
those funds down in the initial year that we’ve observed so far although we
do recognize that that that could be an issue going forward I don’t think that
we would be opposed to adding some language, if it’s not already in there
relating to like that case-by-case evaluation for extenuating circumstances
or something like that but it doesn’t seem that that has been an issue
typically in the past. In your mind does this policy allow serial carryforwards?
Or can I carry, can I submit a carryforward request sequentially year after year and
have it be considered or is this a one one-time situation? I think it does allow
for the sequential carry forward should the need still qualify under the rest
of the policy. I would agree that it does allow for
sequential carry forward and a great example of that is the building projects
with the Fire Chiefs Association that’s been carried forward for three years now
and the opinion of our office would be that there is certainly the need to do
so because those projects are lengthy in nature and require an immense amount of
initial engineering and planning work then permitting and then construction
which takes place in multiple stages so but as Ms. Rubio-Mills pointed out it would
be evaluated per this policy to ensure that it meets the spirit of the
application and falls within the guidelines set out in this policy. Okay.
Have have we had any, have there been any or a significant number of requests that
would not have met the five thousand dollar threshold? There there’s been one
request in particular as pointed out by Mr. Mattson the Willow Creek group
carried forward an initial request of, I believe, it was like around twenty seven
hundred dollars and then they did wish to request a carry forward this year of
you know they had made a request of like seven hundred dollars and we told them
that it wasn’t you know prudent to continue to carry forward such a small
balance so that has also played into this decision here to include a minimum
balance and I would encourage to stick to that minimum balance because it is a
lengthy process and we do hear from a lot of the applicants that are these
smaller dollar amounts that they find it cumbersome to go through contracting to
provide documentation of their insurance and regardless of the amount of the
contract that would still be a requirement, so my suggestion would be if
we if we put a smaller limit like applications less than fifty thousand or
ten thousand that we reduced that limit to maybe a thousand dollars, so that we
don’t continue to have each year small applicants carrying forward minimal
dollar amounts instead we would encourage them to make the efforts to
spend those dollars in that current fiscal year. Okay. Thank you.
Pleasure of the Committee. I appreciate Director Mattson’s comments I made the motion. I’m, I moved approval with Chair Ziemer’s recommended change. I’m I’m kind of
reluctant to withdraw the motion and make a new one because number two these
those people with the fewer amounts still have an opportunity at the public
hearing process but I’m willing to consider any recommendations from other
committee members. I would like to go with Director Mattson’s recommendation of
a threshold of fifty thousand, below that the limit is one thousand dollars. I
think that provides clear direction to applicants and staff and how to deal
with that. Would you like to make that in the form of an amendment to the motion?
or how are you? Okay let me think about my Roberts here a little bit. May I add
to the discussion? Certainly. In talking about this in dollar forms we’re
working with applications that have a variety of requests so there are some
applications that are looking at you know $500,000 application there are some
applications that are like $50,000, so I’m wondering if putting a more of a
percentage based view on what this the the floor and ceiling is of the
application is more realistic for an individual base as opposed to a a
defined dollar amount and I’m wondering if there is if that’s something that
that we would want to explore? What’s staffs view on that option? I think the
percentage amount, while a great idea, does leave a lot of room for disparity.
We have an application this year that is $2,100 so let’s say you
did 10% or something of that sort then then that would be $210 that that we
would be carrying forward and so it becomes an ineffective use of you know
there’s a lot of time and bureaucratics that go into these allocations, as well
as going through the contract process, bringing them back to the Board, and so
you know becomes a point where you know you might not be spending taxpayer
dollars most effectively because you would cost more in staff time to
initiate that change, than you would actually reap and benefit by carrying
forward those dollars likewise the Fire Chief’s are you know tend to be upwards
of two million dollars so so you said you know you reach a high threshold with
them which we’re not you know we’re not talking about a top end of that but you
know particularly for those small ones it you depending on what percentage you
were to choose you start to get down into some pretty small dollar
amounts. Okay, procedurally the maker of the original motion would like to
withdraw their motion. Does the seconder concur with the withdrawal of the motion? Okay.
So we’ll consider Laura’s motion struck from the table. Mr. Robertson would you
like to make a motion that has the comp- more complex setting? I would make a
motion to add language to the policy section Three B1 to have a threshold
that anything below the application threshold of 50,000 the Carry Forward
request must be made in the dollar amount equal to or greater than $1,000.
Okay so this is an addition to the existing language? Yep. Okay. Everyone
clear on the proposal? Is there a second? Okay we have a motion and a second.
Discussion? Public comment? Okay all in favor of amending the proposal of staff
to include a lower tier threshold of $50,000 enabling a
carry forward request of at least $1,000? Please raise your hand. Okay. and also the correction language in A2.
Okay. All those in favor? Aye. Opposed? Okay. motion carries. Okay a review of a letter that was
submitted on behalf of the committee to the Board of Supervisors regarding the
concerns that were discussed in our September meeting at the direction of
the committee I forwarded a letter to Supervisor Bohn on the 12th of
September basically outlining and the concerns that we had identified about
the growth in the salary component of the allocations, the letter indicated
that we had concerns about that particular pattern and also suggested
that we thought some sort of discussion with the subcommittee the board might be
in order that matter was considered on the 19th of November as part of a
package of materials that the staff brought to the Board of Supervisors I
spoke in response to some questions for a brief period of time the summary of
that particular transaction in my mind would be that the Board was not
particularly interested in having a subcommittee discussion for logistic
concerns since the timeline wouldn’t really allow it to happen before this
meeting of this committee and also it didn’t seem to have any legs
philosophically with the board as well they did indicate that they wanted to
discuss the matter more completely so they agendized a matter for the December
10th meeting this last Tuesday at which the staff brought forward a agenda item
for their discussion. I was out of the area and wasn’t able to attend the
meeting so I would ask Ms. Rubio-Mills to maybe summarize the discussion and
conclusion of the Board. Certainly, yes so we did bring back the item for
discussion so we originally presented the letter that I’ve posted here today
on November 19th and the Board did direct us to come back on the 10th which
we did, so just on Tuesday the Board decided to not take any immediate action
in terms of placing caps but did ask staff to form a working group with the
DA, the Sheriff, and Probation to develop staffing projections and an action plan
to address this trend on an ongoing basis and so we expect results from that
working group to come back in April to the Board so they can assess that and
and really take a long-term view of where the fund has been where it might
be going and how we can deal with this trend long term going forward. Help me
understand a little bit more – in more detail – the charge of this, since the
working group consists of the people who have the vast majority of the employees
that we’re addressing. What is the expectation of the board that this group
will do? Well, I think from their perspective the challenge is that with
salary increases similar as to what you said that it is overtaking the fund
potentially and so evaluating how that might affect the ability of the county
to provide public safety which was the intention of the original measure and so
how to balance the staffing of County and non-County and the needs of
individual organizations so and then we’ll have staff from the CAO’s
office as well to be able to evaluate how that works across the board. So just
as an example and I’m just gonna pick the Sheriff because he’s the majority
player in this game, is it your expectation that the Sheriff would come
forward and say over the next three years I project the need
X positions and given our current MOU and trends that exist in our employment
workplace, I expect each of those positions to be allocated with X amount
of cost and so on and therefore my projected cost three fiscal years down
the road would be X. Is that the kind of discussion we’re gonna have? I assume
that that would be part of it but I think more broadly I think everybody is
affected by the dollar amounts available within the fund and so how can we all
work within needs that have been established so far
and the trends that have been established so far how can we work
within those to set reasonable parameters so that everyone is able to
share in the funds and make the most of what’s there going forward. Okay and that
report to the Board will come after this year’s recommendations, and are almost
concurrent with this year’s recommendations – so there would be no
capability to implement any action based on that until the next fiscal year
correct? Yes that is so, and I as your Advisory Committee functions normally you can
make any adjustments to the application or to your process of evaluation and
make those recommendations to the Board now, there’s nothing barring you from
doing that and that is definitely within your purview as a citizens advisory
committee and they can evaluate those recommendations during their their April
review of the recommendations and so if you feel that there’s some action that
you think we could take now then you were you’re definitely welcome to take
that to the Board then, but I don’t think that the Board, with this timeline, would
be able to make any adjustments probably until the 2020-2021 cycle. In the board
meeting on the 10th was there any discussion of the equity issue between
internal and external Awards? There was not much discussion of that and I think
that they did recognize that that is a concern from your committee but it did
not seem to be a big topic of conversation I think it was more on how
to manage the capping or not capping of salaries. Okay, any other questions of
staff about – Well, thank you, did they understood that – the Supervisors –
understand that we’re going to run out of money? Did they understand that? Well I- let me speak to my own experience – I can’t speak – I’m asking you as the Chairman. I think the letter was
pretty direct, so I don’t think you could misinterpret the letter. My comments at
the November 19th meeting we’re very direct
as well I talked about the sensitivity of certain departments ie those County
departments that are receiving the majority of the funding. So I think
there’s an academic understanding , I did – this is my personal view – I think there’s
an academic understanding, but the fact of the matter is, I think there’s a sense
that the Committee is starting to go in a direction that makes the Board of
Supervisors uncomfortable because they realize that ultimately it could limit
or curtail the allocations that go to the County positions and I don’t think
they really are comfortable starting down that road, as much as they might
understand that inevitably that’s going to have to happen. We’ve already started
down that road . I – I agree but your question was do they understand and my
answer is they understand academically but I don’t think they have the stomach
to address it quite currently, quite frankly. Were there any suggestions or
any discussions, although I watched you on television, was there any discussion
of how they were going to solve it? Not directly, one of the Supervisors – I’m
trying to think – I think was Supervisor Wilson if I recall and don’t quote me on
this because I may have the wrong Supervisor there was some request from
one of the supervisors that / he said perhaps the committee could come forward
with some options, in my communications to the staff prior to the meeting on the
10th, I did outline -you know- some increasingly severe options that might
be considered. I don’t know if there was any discussion or consideration of that
suggestion at the board meeting on the 10th? We did not present those because the committee would need to
present those as a committee and there okay so to answer your question there
was no consideration of any specific options because no options were
presented. what are the – what has to happen for the super – to go
on the ballot to raise the tax from one half of one percent – it would – how
does that work? I think I understand but let me have staff speak to that because
they’re probably more knowledgeable. I – that would require a ballot measure to
go on the ballot and be a vote of the people similar to the Measure O which
extended Measure Z, it would be a fifty plus one vote of the majority to
increase the tax and going back to you know what the actions of this – this
working group is, you know that could very well be an outcome – that they say
hey I think that we’ve gained support, let’s go to the voters and let’s see if
we can raise it a quarter cent or a half a cent and and see what happens in that
realm, whether that’s what they’re gonna do – I don’t know but they may also come
and say you know we will agree at a period of time when we start to meet a
threshold to reduce staffing based on attrition or they may come back with a
capping you know there’s lots of different things that might come out of
this working group as recommendations to the Board but it has been left very wide
open at this point on on that group to come to the to the board and let them
know what they think the best options are in moving forward. The working
group consists only of the Sheriff’s Office, the DA, and there is – there any is
there any representation from the CAOs office on the working group? Yes, it’ll be
the CAOs office working with those three departments and thought behind that was
is that those three departments are the largest users of revenues. Okay, thank you.
But why can’t someone from our committee be on that group? Because that isn’t the
way it was constituted. I mean we understand, I think see as a citizen of
Humboldt and as a committee member I think that their solution is in the back of
their mind they’re just gonna say we’ll just wait
and raise the tax, that’s what government does to us, they raise taxes,
and so I’m just fear – that’s why I brought it up six months ago. We’re
running out of money and the solution is the Supervisors are so – they’re gonna put
it on the ballot whoever does that and they’re going to say we got to raise
taxes we’ve solved the problem. I love – maybe. I have a couple questions, one is
the are we gonna see projected revenues from the stakeholder meeting as well as
projected expenses? I’m sorry – that we will be presenting within those meetings?
Yeah. Yes we can provide that information to you. And you talked about we could as a committee make
recommendations to the Board as to how to utilize or change the Measure Z
process, what’s the mechanism for that because I think that’s what we try to do
last time we met. My understanding from the last time we met was the request
that was presented in this letter and so that was delivered to the board so if
you had other recommendations or requests then those would need to be
made formally to the board, we – I think that we could bring those with the
funding recommendations as a supplemental letter or request but – but
last meeting the letter was what was decided on and so that was what was presented. I apologize, I meant that was our intent, that obviously isn’t what we provided.
Thank you so I understand that those three
segments have the most money but was any discussion made about bringing in a
representative from one of the private contractors you know that they use the
money like the police departments or DHHS or somebody like that that have
staffing that we’ve pretty much told them you know once you have somebody you
have to apply every year but we don’t expect you just to hire somebody for a
year you know like the SROs and the and the juvenile diversion officers so can
they even though they’re not on that work committee can they come and listen?
is it an open? It will not be an open open meeting it will be a closed meeting
and and you know politically it gets awkward to – who do you invite Eureka,
Arcata, Fortuna? Then suddenly we have all the applicants that are applying and
there everybody has got a stake in this game and we’re cognizant of that the
time for the public, for the applicants, for your committee, to participate in
that process would be in April when we bring these recommendations to your
board and then you know further, mirroring what Ms. Rubio-Mills said, your
committee is an advisory committee so you – it is well within your realm to say
in your committee recommendations to them that you want specific actions to
be taken and that can be presented to the board at that time. Just a point of
discussion from my understanding of what we’ve covered here though moving into
the upcoming fiscal year change in those salary positions is unrealistic. That’s
correct. So for this upcoming allocation of funds we’re going to have to work
within the similar restrictions that we faced last year. Correct. So what would
you describe the best opportunity to engage the council with a proposal and
how do you recommend that we – what kind of time frame should we as a committee
work on on discussing what we want to see? In March when
when your committee is getting together each Thursday of that month to evaluate
the applications that would be your time to develop a proposal to be presented to
the board that will then come to the board in April for the Board to let our
staff know what recommendations in your letter or what applications they wish to
move forward in the budget allocation process, and at the same time that we
deliver your recommendations to the board is when we will also deliver the
outcomes from this working group, following that our staff return and
incorporate the board’s recommendations into the budget process and then it
comes to the board one more time through the budget process being the proposed
budget coming in early June, budget hearings taking place in mid-June, and
then adopted budget taking place at end of June. All of these meetings are an
opportunity for your committee and the public to engage the board. While you’re
there, Alicia – one quick question – in the November 19th meeting during the Board’s
discussion and responses to some of my statements and so on Supervisor Madrone
made an aleg – he alluded to a quote – I think to use his word about a million
dollar under-expenditure by the Sheriff’s Office that he was clearly
unhappy with the mechanism by which the Sheriff kept being allocated these
monies and the monies were never expended as a result of training and
recruitment issues and so on, was there any refraction or discussion of that
particular element at the December 10th meeting. No.I’m not aware of any
discussions and in in the 18-19 year the Sheriff gave back less funds to the
measure Z than he had originally anticipated because they did have costs
increase this year but it is it is a trend of the public safety departments
to have significant salary savings at the end of the years because their
positions are difficult to recruit for to retain and so that does tend to be
a process of theirs, however that being said if you
have say 40 FTE’s allocated even though you weren’t able to fill all those F T’s
this year doesn’t mean next year you can’t so you continue on in your
budgeting as if you are going to fill all of your positions and that’s a
standard practice across all of our departments, you budget for the full
amount assuming you’re going to fill all of those positions and then what’s left
at the end of the year gets returned back. Okay. He does not get to carry if
he’s got a million dollars left this year and this is actually part of the
carry forward process that you know salaries are not something carried
forward because you already re-budget those funds you don’t need anything in
addition so if you’ve got a million dollars left this year you don’t get an
extra million dollars next year to do with it what you wish. Okay thank you. I
want to keep going on questions on running out of money. What if we get to a
place three or four years down the road if we get to a place three or four years
down the road and we run out of money there just is no more? Well wait -who, where would the money come from to pay the salaries? Do they- does the sheriff and
the fire department go back to their personnel and reduce their wages? I don’t
think the Union would allow that. How does that shortfall-how is that
shortfall made up ? There’s many different ways. The general fund? The general fund could be a possibility to backfill that reducing other expenditures more
overhead expenditures office equipment training things of that sort can be
considered. The fire department and that in the police department does that? Well
the fire department doesn’t have staffing associated to their application
they’re strictly equipment based the the outside agencies Eureka Police
Department, Arcata Police, Fortuna, they have to come each year and and if the
money runs out if there’s not funding available there then then that would be
a recommendation on your committees part to consider and for the board to
consider whether or not they approve those funds.
Who’s they? The Board of Super- ultimately the Board of Supervisors has
full discretion over these dollars that are they allocate I thought maybe you
meant the individual, the fire department in Fortuna or the police department.
Fortunately they don’t get to make those decisions, the Board does so they’re I mean not that’s a that’s a
fiscal decision that will become a burden of my staff, of your committee, of
the Board, to determine how we’re going to address that, if and when, that time
does come around. Thank you. Okay, any other questions of staff on this before
we continue our discussion of committee level? Thank you. When I spoke to the
Board on the 19th of November I made an allusions to the fact that we were
hoping for some guidance and direction because this process is obviously about
to you know start again and we felt the need to try to address it this year
quite frankly I’m disappointed that the board decided to kind of just kick the
can down the road and so given the fact that they have decided not to address it
at this point in time it’s clearly incumbent upon us if we feel the need to
try to do it internally here and bring it forward as staff indicated as a
recommendation to the Board so I’m interested in the committee’s position.
Do you feel, and let me explain why I’m bringing this issue forward, one of the
things I had hoped the board would talk about was this internal/external equity
issue – in my mind if the committee and/or the board was to adopt a position
whereby the internal salary positions were treated differently than the
external ones I would view that quite frankly -and I’ll use strong language- as a
betrayal of the measure and in my mind there has to be an equity to the process
so that if we’re gonna fund a hundred percent of the costs of the internal
positions then we cannot go out to the external agencies and say we want you to
bring ten or fifteen or twenty percent of your you know application amount
in order to make the thing fly, apparently that discussion never
occurred with the Board of Supervisors but I’m curious, first of all and the
reason I raise this is we’re going to talk about the application in a few
minutes and if in fact we’re going to even suggest to the outside applicants
that there may be some changes in the way we address those issue we’d first
have to address that equity issue of internal versus external. So what is the
committee’s thoughts on how we would treat external applicants versus
internal carry-forward salary positions? Would you explain for us who are slow the difference what are you referring to internal and external?
The county has I don’t know let’s just use the sheriff as an example
approximately 40 FTEs full-time equivalent positions are currently
funded under Measure Z. Right. And Measure Z funding pays a hundred percent of the
cost of that position. Yes. Okay that’s internal. Yeah. As an example Fortuna has
a school position -help me with the term- school resource officer and and in the
current year we also have funded a hundred percent of the cost of that
position my concern is that were we to start looking at trying to trim the
effects of this inflation of the salary one of the things we might do is either
implement an absolute cap we might say that Measure Z would fund or we would
recommend to the board of supervisors as I understand that we’re advisory and
we’re not the decision makers but we could recommend to the board of
supervisors that those salaried positions that are carry for- carried
forward or funded 90 percent with Z money and ten percent with the funding
source that the applicant would have to identify my point is I do not feel like
it would be ethical or fair for us to say we’re going to continue to fund all
the internal County positions at a hundred percent of the cost but demand
that the external applicants shoulder some of the burden outside of Z so a
police officer working for Fortuna we would reimburse say at 80 or 90 percent
with them having to come up with the other 20 and then turn around and say
but we’re going to give the sheriff full 100% of funding for
in every position that that’s what I’m terming the equity argument and I’m curious
about people’s thought about- do they share their Sheriff’s position that that
equity issue is is a moral issue and it’s also a practical and pragmatic and
political issue that we need to address if we’re going to start putting a
limitation on the salary component of this operation. Well on the internal
though haven’t – once we said that we’re going to pay for these positions do you
think that we have even the power to suggest to reduce the pay? Absolutely.
Think so? Absolutely, we can make a recommendation at the committee’s
direction whether the Board of Supervisors will support it and enact it
may be an entirely different question but the committee clearly has the
operational authority to make a recommendation in line with the
committee’s determination and that’s a potential, now obviously if we’re going
to start doing that some sort of understanding of the realities and the
real world effects of that need to be part of our discussions so we don’t
propose something that’s not doable in the real world. So I don’t I don’t feel
personally this committee should tell anybody on the outside to cap you know
they will only pay X amount or X amount because what we’ve done in the past is
we’ve given them what we felt you know we could give and then they’ve come up
with other ways to fund the rest of the positions or or they’ve come up with
other ways to have the person work part-time or full-time I don’t I don’t
think that that’s up to us to put a cap on anybody’s position on the outside, the
inside I don’t know. I suppose that’s what the work group is supposed to do
they’re supposed to figure out a way to you know deal with the staffing but to
put something in an application and say you can ask for staffing but well no
matter what you do we’re going to ask for 80 percent or you know we will
consider 80 percent because I know external agencies do figure it out you
know either they work less hours or they come up with a
little bit of extra money from the city or whatever that’s what they’ve done in
the past so I don’t know if it’s up to us on an application process to give
them an amount or a percentage. I think that’s that’s up to them. I would – I
wanted to respond to your question. I do echo your concerns with the the burden
of funding being placed on the external agencies and looking at the internal
agencies as the priority. I see that is a concern worthy of discussion
and recommendation by this committee and I hope we continue it what that turns
into I don’t know because as a County we do have to come together and find
something that works that we can agree on and I think based on all of our
challenges that’s going to be difficult but I really do hope we continue that
that conversation I’m I’m hoping that we can take a percentage look at it because
at that point we will be dealing with just the income that’s coming each year
and not looking at set amounts. I’m hoping that we can define what kind of
percentage we can expect to recommend towards the internal positions one thing
I noticed from the last last year was the county did pick up funding for
several programs through the general fund. I think if we as a committee you
are able to influence them in this way I think we need to start to be much
tighter on our budgeting and almost create a contingent at ten percent
contingency or a five percent contingency on the the applications that
we put out so that we’re not impacting the general fund with our our
allocations, with our- yeah with our recommendations- as a way of trying to
have a more realistic view on on how to make change and that’s that’s
kind of what I’m hoping to see us move forward to. Any other thoughts? Thank You.
Mr. Chair, I totally agree with you that these are moral and pragmatic and
political decisions especially political at the Board of Supervisors level but I
I have to disclose I just recently returned to Humboldt a couple of weeks
ago after being out of the county for over three months due to a family
emergency so I may be a little uninformed here but I’m curious as to
the status of the county’s general fund budget and if if I’m looking at pink
elephants to think that perhaps the working group might find if any of their
Measure Z positions can be funded in their general fund request even one one
position and if that means they have to cut some services and supplies line
items to maybe make that happen I’m just throwing it out there. So the intention of the fund initially
was to provide a funding source where the general fund was unable to provide
without the general fund wasn’t unable to provide previously and so it was
there it was voted into or presented as a solution to that lack of funding and
so if we put the burden back on to the general fund we could just be recreating
the same problem that the Measures was initially enacted to address and so that
kind of is the piece I think that makes it a bit of a challenge to to revert
positions back to the general fund that certainly is a recommendation that your
advisory group is welcome to make, yes so that that’s something that you’re
welcome to make a recommendation of, but that sort of the context that that sits
with it. Any other comments, thoughts? I don’t personally think it’s within our
purview to reduce salary so to speak I think our mandate is to make the best
decisions as citizens and representatives within applications. I
don’t think there’s one solution for this problem.
I think it’s multiple. I always go back to what original intent was that’s
delineated in the measure that we’re looking at in our packet and I think
that was a struggle we had last year, what fits within that and what does not.
So when I hear internal versus external I think the internal is the priority
because that’s how I read the intent of the measure that the county wasn’t able
to provide those services that’s what the measure was created for those
positions have now been funded to increase the customer service to the
county. I am more interested in what Nicholas spoke to as to an apportionment
I’m posting which in a fixed apportionment that we can look to in the
future that CAO’s office can budget for so we kind of know what’s what what
we’re dealing with the big problem right now is we try to initiate some of these
changes before we got to this point so that the supervisors could provide
direction to us as you said so I think our options right now before we receive
applications are very limited and I think we’re going to be in the same
position we were in earlier this year where we have applications we make our
process and then it comes down to reducing specific applications so in
essence that’s what we’re talking about doing before we make our determinations
and that’s I think what we’re gonna end up doing anyway so that’s a long-winded
way of saying I don’t have anything specific I would recommend before we
begin. I think- besides adhering to these seven points that were
what I think or what I I would encourage us all to look at and say this is what
the intent of the this measure is and that’s what we should be recommending be
funded. Okay. I’d like to make one comment – one comment with that and I appreciate
you returning to the ordinance because in coming here that’s the only thing
that we’ve been given direction on, the one thing that concerned me as we have
talked about this internal/external from my interpretation what we’ve defined as
internal expenses do not cover the extent of the ordinance and so there is
in a written description of how these funds will be spent that’s not covered
in the the guaranteed salary positions and we need to ensure that those items
have the opportunity to be served as well. Any other discussion, public comment? Thank You, Justin McDonald president of
the Chiefs Association and first I’d have to say thanks for doing the hard
lifting on this, this is a huge issue and thanks for trying to tackle it and I’d
echo what you just said that Mr. Mattson is an internal candidate for funding and
yet he’s always playing scraps at the end of the year with getting that that
funding question I have and I don’t know if it’s for you guys or maybe for a
staff is the Sheriff’s Department ever seems like they’re fully staffed and you
have some general fund money staffing and you have the Measure Z staffing, we
have vacant positions on either side of the that coin can we reallocate some of
those funds or are we a hundred percent staffed with those major Z positions in
the general fund you know can that be reallocated I don’t know but it’s it’s
food for thought for somebody maybe but again I appreciate your internal but it
sounds like you know we have DHHS, roads, Airport – there’s a lot of internal that
seemed to come to the table with us from the external to fight for those 4.4
million that’s left. Again thank you for doing this. I don’t have any – does
staff have any answer to Mr. MacDonald’s question? I imagine it’s those types
of questions that this workgroup will be working through so a assume that is
going to be at the topic of conversation but I don’t have a specific answer right now.
Ernie Branscomb here, I-I have been a – spent a good part of my life in a fire
department and I’ve also spent a good part of my life on county roads and
anytime there’s any discussion of saving money I think County roads is the first
to suffer. I think Mr. Mattson will agree with me there and then fire departments
are always squeezed out of their funding. I’ve seen it so many times that they if
there’s no money available they take it well they can live with the
chuckholes and pretty soon they’re taken away from the fire departments I don’t
think that funding where it goes has much to do with in
or external they’re gonna go after county roads first to take money from
that they’re gonna go after fire department second then they’re gonna go
after the external funding you’re talking about, there’s just not enough
money to go around I think what Humboldt County needs to concern itself with at
this point maybe this is off the subject but I think they need to develop the
economy of Humboldt County. I’ve I just came back from Ukiah last week and
they’re booming down there they’re building houses of course it’s from the
fire in Santa Rosa most likely that reconstructing in Ukiah but we need an
economy up here and I mean I that’s not within the purview of this committee but
I guess the best thing we can do is just divvy up what we get to divvy up and the
Board of Supervisors like you say are there they’re the ultimate decider so we
do what they asked us to do and divvy up what money we have, don’t know what other
don’t know what- what other direction we can go. Thank you Anything else? Ginger. So this is a closed
meeting on the work group but could we submit questions as committee members or
or something just to you know we wouldn’t it wouldn’t be there but is
there a way to submit questions? or things consideration, for them to look at?
I think that we could bring – like three? Like I could give it to Mike cuz I’m – he
appointed me or something like that? Is it? I-I think so yeah. I think that’s – why
don’t we do that. Okay any other discussion?
I’m sorry. Good afternoon, Dr. Stephen Stake from K’ima:wl Medical Center and entity of
the Hoopa Valley tribe. I just wanted to expound a little bit
upon the internal/external just as providing or however you’re gonna look
at that internally and externally that we like you to take into consideration a
geographical component to that so we’re considering an external organization but
yet we’re providing you know those emergency services for the Hoopa Valley
tribe, the Willow Creek ambulance base that runs all along the 299 corridor, 15
over the bank rescues last year and I think around 50 motor vehicle accident
responses, and so just as that internal budget grows then we’re one of those
external ones that would be competing for the very small slice of that pie and
so I just want you to remember us and take that into consideration as you
weigh out the equity of how you’re going to decide. Thank you. Okay, any other
public comments? Good afternoon, my name is Walt Wilson
Fortuna resident. I’m not real sure what I want what I really want to say, this
internal versus external conversation to me is nuts. Everybody is paying into this Measure Z
fund why is it that county employees are in better stead than employees of say
Arcata? What-what – why are you why are you treating County people better? And I have
another question this committee is left with I don’t know what five million
dollars or something in in funds to distribute, who decides who decides how
that that upper level gets distributed? I mean the sheriff is in here for the bulk
of the money, who makes that determination? What-what why doesn’t is
board, this committee, deal with the whole package? I’m confused and I’m not a happy
camper. Okay. Thanks. Good afternoon,
Supervisor Madrone. You did get the results of our meeting on Tuesday did
you get any feedback on what we did decide on Tuesday? Yes, we did. Good. Whether or not we deal with it now or
not, eventually it becomes a problem because with increasing costs of
internal eventually there’s no discretionary money at some point, is
that a year from now, is that three years from now, you know measure Z now is
ongoing right – so eventually we reach that point anyway, so we did take an
action, as you know, to say we’ve got to figure that out and what we’ve done is
direct Probation, the Sheriff, and the other DA to come back with a plan and
say so how are we going to deal with that we’re not going to wait till we get
up against the wall and there’s no discretionary left whatsoever to deal
with this, so I think that was a good action to take and I personally look
forward to working with you all to try and figure that out because waiting till
the midnight hour is not the way to go with that right so I just wanted to
reinforce that I’m glad you’ve received that information so thank you. Thank you
Supervisor Madrone, thank you for taking your time to come down. You’re welcome, I
came a long way – it’s like yeah… I know but thank you for coming today. You’re
welcome, thank you for your work, all of you. Okay. Laura. I-I wanted to briefly
comment on what I – but – Mr. Wilson is that you’re – yeah I- I don’t want to get into a
dialogue, but I’m – just want to tell you one of the reasons I voted for Measure Z
and wanted to be on this committee is that I was really strong and wanting to
see sheriff’s deputies on the on patrol and DA’s to prosecute and fire districts
made whole and my entire career working as a county employee I did not think the
fire dis-districts were treated very well now when we talk about sheriff’s
deputies and deputy DA’s those are county employees that’s I I
don’t think it’s a matter of favoritism I think it’s kind of a matter of pri-
priorities and this is just one voters perspective. Okay anything else? Okay, in
that case we’ll move to item number five the fiscal year 2021 funding application
and consideration of any changes or modifications we may wish to make that
application enclosed in your packet is a copy of the application form and the
enquiries that we have forwarded to applicants in the past is there any
interest in making any modifications to that document? May I just add that the
application included in your packet was last year’s application so the dates
would be changed and so the proposed dates as far as release and due dates we
are proposing a release date of January 20th and a due date of February 17th
that would give applicants a full four weeks to submit their applications and
that would give your committee 18 days two and a half weeks to review I know
you get a lot of information and and that would give you a bit more time this
year to review those applications. Thank you I had a quick comment on the cover
letter we just have to accurately reflect who is vice chair and chair. Any
other discussion? proposals? I would propose making,
creating a lead question stating closely to the the tone of please describe how
your application fits into the verbage of the Measure Z ordinance? Okay and
where would you like to see that? I would like to see that as as in the spot of
question 3 or of the line item 3. I would like to see it added in there and the
rest of the line items moved from that move numerically down. Okay, so-so insert
a request for a statement of affirmation that the application is consistent with
the Measure Z protocol so to speak correct and then renumber the rest of
the items to reflect the insertion of that one is that my understanding your -is that correct?
That is, Yes. Is that in the form of a motion? I hope so.
Okay is there a second? Okay a motion and a second to insert – yes he’s proposing
the addition of a new inquiry where we would ask the applicant to describe
briefly how their application is consistent with the purpose and intent
of Measure Z as forwarded to the voters or something to that… Yes, thank you. Okay. I
think is – what is the process that-that takes is that take anything other than
just reprinting it? No. It’s as simple as that? okay, thank you. Are we in discussion?
Absolutely. How is that question different than the attachment question
with the proposed proposal narrative and their prior year’s results? I feel that that’s different because it
puts it front and center in the application, as the first part of the
description rather than having it being an attachment that’s coming as a later
statement. Any other discussion? Any public comment? Okay we have a motion and a second to insert a new item 3 which is a request that the applicant identify
the alignment of their application with the goals and language of measure Z as
represented on the ballot all those in favor? Opposed? Okay, motion carries so we will add a new number 3 and re-number the balance. Any other proposals for
modification to the application? Okay. Review of future committee meetings, I
believe staff had an item they wanted to bring forward regarding the timing of
day of the meetings to reflect the needs of one of the committee members you want
to speak to that? Yes but we did not have public comment on the changes to the
application. Oh I’m sorry, my apologies. Would anyone like to make any public
comment on the proposal that we made to modify the application? I seeing none.
Thank you for the correction, would you like to speak a little bit, I know you
indicated that we had previously made a an effort to re- time the meeting to
one o’clock in the afternoon but that’s presented a conflict apparently a
consistent conflict with one of our members so would the staff like to speak
to that? Yes, Sheriff Honsal is unable to make it
if these meetings continue to begin at 1:00 p.m. And 2:00 o’clock is an
acceptable time from this perspective? That’s right. So is the committee
interested in revisiting that issue to allow the sheriff to attend or do you
wish to leave the meetings at 1:00 o’clock that’s right the sheriff has
communicated that he would be unable to attend where the meetings to be at 1:00
o’clock. I am interested in changing the time, I think the sheriff should be here.
I do too .So what time would you like it change to Mr Robertson. I make a motion we changed the time to 2:00 p.m., 1400. Is that a second Mr. Aames?
Oh yes, I second. Okay, we have a motion, and a second to reset the time in the meetings
to 2:00 p.m. in the afternoon. Any discussion?
Public comment? Okay. All those in favor say aye. Aye. Opposed? Okay motion carries. So our meeting time will revert to two o’clock in the afternoon starting with
the January meeting. I apologize, I didn’t see an aye or a hand from everyone.
Okay, everyone in favor of motion please raise your hand,
Opposed? Abstentions? Okay so a review of future committee
meetings. We had one other item and that is and proposal to move the next meeting
from January 23rd to January 30th. Oh I’m sorry – to January 23rd from June 30th. Okay. The application deadline is that is proposed as the 20th correct okay so on
the 23rd you will clearly not have collated and reproduced all the
applications and so on so what would be the topic of discussion specifically at
the January meeting I guess is my question and if the applications aren’t
available what would you propose the meeting focus on? The applications will
be released on the 20th and just because of staffing we won’t have everyone
available on the 30th and we will have folks here on the 23rd. So I could – maybe
I’m just dense here but I’m lost. We are proposing to change the next meeting
date from the 30th to the 23rd. Okay because we will not have staffing here
to have a full house. Okay if I might jump in to answer a question typically
that day the schedule has stayed the same where the applications have gone
out but nothing has come back in yet in that first January meeting it’s a more
of a touch base we give you a mid-year report we see where the fund is and kind
of review the application process in anticipation of getting those
applications back, it it typically – you don’t have those applications back for
that January meeting, the first time we all get together after seeing the
applications is that first March meeting. Okay, is it also fair to assume that at
that point in time you would have a pretty good handle on the actual
expenditures for the calendar year at that point so that we could have an
agenda item to talk about you know where did we actually in the
end up as opposed to our projections? I think for a calendar year we won’t have
that I know you were talking calendars fiscal year I understand that the
difference. I can speak to the budget process we we will have the year in 18-19 actuals so we we tend to
update your committee on how the prior year wound up and then we will have a
mid-year projection on how the 19-20 year is going to end so it
certainly is nowhere near what the actuals will be but it’s a staffs best
estimate on where we think we might be and it will also be an initial
projection of what the next year’s revenues look like and how much funding
might be available. Okay thank you – what – while you’re there maybe one more
question, in line with our previous discussion are the current MOU documents
with the law enforcement elements of the county of a term that you could
accurately project the one year and two year out costs were we to continue
funding the number of FTEs that we clear ours is the sheriff’s MOU in a position
where they have like a three-year MOU and so you know what your costs are
gonna be in year two and year three and we could take a look and see how this
presumed inflation actually you know pans out were we to continue to fund the
full number of FTEs. I believe there is one more full fiscal year so the 2021
year will be the final year of the current MOU so Human Resources is just
in the process of gearing up for the next round of negotiations, our staff
does remain in contact of how those negotiations are going which helps us to
do our projections so so we will certainly take our best guess so to
speak what the projections will look like in the future as you know it is it
is of course an estimate things can certainly change we won’t have that ironed out at this funding cycle okay so you would have the salary cost would clearly
be delineated in the MOU CalPERS notifies agencies in November
traditionally so you would have the retirement component, workers
compensation insurance carriers and stuff here through it JPA, correct?
I- we-yes, so does the JPA publish? and and other I guess my question is
we’ve talked kind of speculatively about what we think is going to happen with
these wage structures and it seems to me that with a little bit of work we have
the capability to identify it very carefully and… I assure you Mr. Ziemer
that staff are very well versed in in making revenue and expenditure estimates
and we take into account all of the mentioned items and and we look at many
different aspects the economy trends the things that we see going forward in
developing those projections to the best of our abilities. I wasn’t, just so it’s
clear, I wasn’t questioning your capability. I was just trying to in my
mind inventory the components to see if the information would be available to
let us make a good hard estimate of the costs. All- all projections are projections
there will be no you know hard as you know it’s an estimate so I stand here
before you and everybody saying that they will change I will not hit it on
the penny and I can guarantee that to one hundred and fifty percent but we do
a good job and we do our best jobs and we take in to – many different factors
into account when preparing those projections. Okay so thank you. The matter
before us was changing the meeting from the 30s to the 23rd is there any
objection to the staffs request at 2 p.m. at 2 p.m. yes.
Okay seeing none chair would direct that the meeting date be changed to the 23rd. May we have public comment? Thank you for being the advocate for
that. Is anyone in the audience liking to comment on the proposed change of date
as a public member from the 30th to the 23rd? Seeing none, to just maybe to make
this easier for me as a chair my understanding was that public
comment was taken on could include substantive matters that procedural
things and things of that nature were not subjective am i misunderstanding
that the requirements? This was on the agenda and each agendized item gets public comment. oOkay so even if it’s quote-unquote no substantive if
it’s on the agenda then it gets public comment. Okay thank you, thank you for the clarification I’ll try to be a better steward in the future.
Seeing no public comment the meeting date formally scheduled for the 30th
will be on the 23rd is there any discussion or wish to review any of the
other proposed meeting dates that were forwarded in the action summary for the
meaning of the September meeting so those are all still good for everyone
and they still meet your timelines okay all right I believe it’s time for us to
entertain a motion to adjourn. Just one more question just for for staff, for us
to submit questions to our board of supervisors to be included in that
discussion internally is there a timeline about that or is is there a
time when we should have questions submitted to them? I believe the first
meetings are targeted for the first or second week of January so if you did
have specific questions you’d like us to bring forward we could establish those
now before adjourning or you could send those to us before that time. I have a
question. Okay. I have a question for staff, how soon will the application the
new with the new wording be available because I’ve had people asking me for
copies of the application, so with the changes now the application that they
were gonna have is now obsolete so where do we go as planned they will have the
application available to them on January 20th that date will not change but we
don’t really set the first they’ll be able to make out an application as
January 20th yes so we want everybody to be able to access it on the same day so
they have the same timeframe to compile their information and get
that back. No cheating and filling it out ahead. Okay. You would second the motion
to adjourn ? The meeting is adjourned

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