MAY 10, 2005

7:00 PM – The regular meeting of the Brookneal Town Council


The municipal government of the Town of Brookneal met with the following members present:


Phyllis Campbell, Mayor

James Nowlin, Vice Mayor

Meg Tibbs, Kenneth Jennings, Tracy Meisenbach, Richard Adams, and Stacey Hailey Council Members

Bill Gillespie, Town Manager

Laurie C. Francis, Clerk/Treasurer

Mike Crews, Public Works Director

Ricky Cousins, Police Chief








Mayor Campbell opened the public hearing at 7:09 p.m.


Mr. Jack Carwile of Adams Ferry Road spoke to council with concerns about the budget.  Mr. Carwile indicated he was concerned about the insurance the town is offering.  Mr. Carwile went on to say he had discovered that the town has one employee that the town is paying all of the medical insurance for him and his family.  Mr. Carwile asked if the town had any other employees that they did this for.  Mayor Campbell responded, “No Sir”.  Mr. Carwile went on to ask the council why they were paying the insurance for this one employee.  Mayor Campbell responded by saying that this was a council decision made three or four years ago in reference to the change in position.  The employee was taking on a lot greater role than what he had been on.  Mr. Carwile asked if the employee received a raise in salary to which the Mayor responded, “No sir.”  Mr. Carwile went on to comment that he had been at a prior meeting of council where it was brought up that the salaries that the employees were making were so low and the moral was low.  Mr. Carwile questioned council’s intent saying, “If you are paying one employees insurance for his whole family and you’re not paying the rest of them what kind of moral is that for them?”  Mr. Carwile further stated that he did not blame the employee but blamed the council as he felt they were the ones responsible.


Mr. Carwile noted that the insurance increase this year was approximately a 19% increase plus the employees were receiving 3% increase in salary.  Mr. Carwile commended the town on their effort to pick up the increase and not pass it on to the employees.


Mr. Carwile also brought up the issue of overtime asking council if there was some way the town could cut out some of the overtime.  Mayor Campbell responded that Mr. Gillespie, the Town Manager, had been working on this issue since arriving at the town and would continue to work on this issue.


With no one else from the public wishing to speak, Mayor Campbell closed the public hearing at 7:14 p.m.






Mayor Campbell opened the public hearing at 7:14 p.m.


No one from the public appeared before council to speak on the Utility Fund Budget.


Mayor Campbell closed the public hearing at 7:15 p.m.




Upon motion by Kenneth Jennings seconded by James Nowlin and unanimously carried, Council approved the agenda for the May 10, 2005 regular meeting of the Brookneal Town Council with the following addition: 1) Representatives from Wachovia to speak to council.





Upon motion by James Nowlin, seconded by Meg Tibbs and unanimously carried, Council approved the April 12, 20 & 21, 2005 minutes.





The April 2005 Treasurer’s report was filed for audit.





Be it resolved that motion was made by James Nowlin, seconded by Richard Adams and unanimously carried, authorizing the payment of the invoices for the period of April 12, 2005 to May 9, 2005 in the amount of $8,842.96.



Christy Chalmers, from Wachovia Bank in Brookneal introduced herself to council and went on to introduce Cindy Forren who would speak to council about the Wachovia at Work Program.  Ms. Forren noted several different packages that would be available to the town employees.  Some of the benefits were checking with no minimum balance, no monthly service fee, and online banking.  Also mentioned were the availability of loan discounts and mortgage incentives.


The council referred this item to the Finance and Planning Committee for further study.


Ms. Shirley Wilson, of Terry Road in Brookneal, addressed council with concerns about the various articles in the paper recently that seemed to contradict themselves.  Ms. Wilson stated that it seemed that one week she reads that the water bills are going up and the next week she reads that the water bills are not going up.


Mayor Campbell informed Ms. Wilson that the council had not made a decision yet and were still studying all of the facts to determine what, if any, increases will need to be made in the water rates for the Town of Brookneal.


Mayor Campbell went on to let Ms. Wilson know that the Town Council had two public meetings at the community building to try to let the citizens know what was going on with the water rates but only two people had shown up.


Ms. Wilson also expressed concerns stating that she had read in the paper that the meals tax was the only support the town had.  She went on to comment that this was very sad that four or five businesses were supporting the town.


Mayor Campbell expressed her appreciation to those businesses for their support noting that the council did not like to tax anyone.


Mr. Jack Carwile of Adams Ferry Road questioned council about the rent for town owned buildings asking council if the town would be receiving any rent for these buildings in the upcoming fiscal year.


Mr. Gillespie responded to Mr. Carwile's question stating that when the buildings were occupied the town did receive rent.  However, the buildings were not currently occupied and therefore no rent had been budgeted for the upcoming year.


Mr. Carwile asked about the clean up of unsightly properties in the town.  Town Manager, Bill Gillespie, responded noting that the council had developed a strategy as far as blighted properties were concerned.  The Physical Development Committee would be developing an inventory of all of the blighted properties in the town and addressing these matters.


Mr. Josh Pritt, Filter Plant Operator for the Town of Brookneal, requested that council consider increasing the amount that is allowed for educational reimbursement in the current town personnel manual.


Mr. Gillespie informed Mr. Pritt that the council was currently working on updating the entire personnel manual and would be addressing this matter during that process.




Upon motion from Meg Tibbs, seconded by Tracy Meisenbach and unanimously carried, council appointed Public Works Director Mike Crews to the Housing Board for the Mattox/Claytor Street neighborhood revitalization project.





Ms. Carolyn Younger, director of the Central Virginia Area Agency on Aging Center, appeared before council in order to update them on the centers activities.  Ms. Younger expressed her deep appreciation to Brookneal for allowing the center to exist in the town.  Ms. Younger went on to request of council that if they have any questions or concerns about the center in the future would they address her personally so that she can resolve any issue in a prompt manner.  Ms. Younger concluded by noting that she loved her job and the people that she met in the course of her job.





Council discussed several dates for the Day in the Town.  Being unable to decide on a date at that time, council tabled the issue until the June meeting.





The Town Manager and the Clerk/Treasurer presented council with information regarding the pros and cons of following Campbell County’s lead and discontinuing the sale of decals for personal vehicles during the next year.  Council also received information on utilizing the DMV Stop program to enable the town to collect on outstanding debts.


After a lengthy discussion, council opted to table this matter until the June, 2005 council meeting.




Upon motion from James Nowlin, seconded by Richard Adams and unanimously carried, Council went into closed session under VA Code Section 2.2-3711 (A)(1) for the purpose of discussing the performance of the Town Manager. 





Upon returning from closed session, Mayor Campbell moved that the town council certify that, in the closed meeting just concluded, nothing was discussed except the matter specifically identified in the motion to convene in a closed meeting and lawfully permitted to be so discussed under the provisions of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act cited in that motion.  Voting was as follows:


Mayor, Phyllis Campbell         Aye

Tracy Meisenbach                  Aye

Meg Tibbs                               Aye

Stacey Hailey                         Aye

Kenneth Jennings                   Aye

James Nowlin                                     Aye

Richard Adams                       Aye


Mayor Campbell announced that the May 10, 2005 Council meeting was adjourned.





___________________________                  ____________________________

Laurie C. Francis,                                           Phyllis Campbell,

Clerk/Treasurer                                               Mayor

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