August 11, 2015

MINUTES OF THE BROOKNEAL TOWN COUNCIL

 

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

Richard Adams, Robert Jean, Mark Wilkes, Barbara Laprade, and Joseph B. David, Jr., Council Members 

Russell Thurston, Town Manager

Bobbie Waller, Clerk/Treasurer

Mike Crews, Public Works Director

Ricky Baldwin, Chief of Police

INVOCATION AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE TO THE FLAG

 

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

 

Upon motion by Robert Jean, seconded by Mark Wilkes, and unanimously carried, Council approved the agenda for the August 11, 2015, regular meeting of the Brookneal Town Council.

 

MINUTES

 

Upon motion by Barbara Laprade, seconded by Mark Wilkes, and unanimously carried, Council approved the June 9, 2015 Town Council meeting minutes, the June 23, 2015 Physical Development Committee meeting minutes, and the July 14, 2015 Town Council meeting minutes.   

TREASURER’S REPORT

Mayor Campbell asked that the July and August 2015 treasurer’s reports be filed for audit. 

PRESENTATION AND APPROVAL OF INVOICES

 

Be it resolved that motion was made by James Nowlin, seconded by Robert Jean, and unanimously carried, authorizing the payment of the invoices for the period of June 10, 2015 to August 11, 2015, in the amount of $36,038.68.

MARK THOMAS, SOUTHSIDE ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE

 

Mr. Mark Thomas, Community Relations Coordinator for Southside Electric Cooperative, appeared before Council, to let everyone know about Southside’s interest in the communities that they serve.  He said Southside provides scholarships to local students, and they sponsor an annual youth tour in Washington, DC.   He said 8 students from their service area participated, and all costs were covered by Southside.  He said to feel free to call him in Altavista if he or Southside can be of any service to the Council.

PUBLIC COMMENT

 

Mr. Gene Moorefield, of Lynchburg Avenue, asked about a wolf or a wolf dog that attacked another dog in town.  He asked if there was an ordinance in the Town or what is the law regarding that.  Mayor Campbell said that there is not a leash law in the Town.  Councilperson David said that a leash law would not have made a difference anyway because the dogs were in a pen and escaped.  He said the dogs did not look like there was a lot of wolf in them, one looked like a coyote and one looked like a malamute.  He noted that all dogs are like 98% DNA related to the wolf, and he said at one time you could not do a DNA test and tell if an animal was a wolf.  He said they either chewed through the wire or dug out of the pen.  He said those two animals would not bother anybody anymore.  Mr. Moorefield asked how the citizens could be protected from something like this especially the elderly and children.  Mr. David noted that if someone has a wolf hybrid they have to get a special license.  Mr. David also noted that he did not think the Town could go beyond anything the State does, and since the state just requires a special license for a wolf hybrid, the Town couldn’t say they couldn’t have one, they would just have to have a license for it. 

Ms. Tracy Meisenbach, of Cook Avenue, said that pertaining to those comments about dogs, that there is an issue, and she said that the Town code section 90.02 says dogs are prohibited from running at large.  She said the dog issue has been extreme in the last 6 months.  Ms. Meisenbach said that there is also a slum lord problem in Town.  She said “she is like in the Bermuda triangle of ‘dumpsters’ in this town”.  She said the Town Council can do something about it, and has the ability to put into effect landlord codes. 

Mr. Dean Monroe, of Staunton River Roe Vineyards, got up to speak with a piece of paper in his hand.  Mayor Campbell asked Mr. Monroe what his paper was pertaining to.  He said it was his opinion.  Councilperson Jean said that Dean Monroe and Michael Monroe were asked to make a list of their concerns concerning the special use permit for the vineyard and come in and voice them with the town manager, but they didn’t do it.  Mr. Dean Monroe said they would be glad to do that, but they were told they were not allowed to meet with anybody.  Mayor Campbell stopped the dialogue.  She noted that there is a binding contract on the vineyard, the Council passed it, and there was a public hearing in April in which no one from the Monroe family or the public showed up for in favor of or against the vineyard.  She said that the Monroes have entered into legal counsel pertaining to the vineyard, and the Town has legal counsel who drew up the special use permit.  She said any contact needs to be between the Monroes and the Town’s attorney.  He went on to state his “opinion”. 

Ms. Annabel Maley, attorney representing the Monroes, wanted to let the Town know that she spoke with the legal counsel at the FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) office, and he advised her that her clients have an action against the Town for the Town’s failure to timely answer a FOIA request.  She said she advised her clients to file that action in the General District Court of the Circuit Court of Campbell County because it seems to her that the town is trying to turn this into some kind of “pissing” contest.  She said her clients did not want to stoop to that level.  She said they have elected at least at this point to not have her file that action.  She said that the rule says that you have to acknowledge the receipt of a FOIA request within 5 business days even if that acknowledgment is in the form of a letter saying “we have received your request and we are working on it”.  She said she would be getting with Bobbie to get the information on the Town’s attorney. 

POLICE REPORT

 

Chief Richard Baldwin presented the police report for August 2015.  He said there were 119 calls for service in July of which 91 were answered by the Brookneal Police Department and 28 were answered by Campbell County Sheriff’s Office. 

Tracy Meisenbach of Cook Avenue asked what could be done about noise ordinance violations. She said between 11:30 p.m. and 3:30 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights music from her neighbors is ridiculously loud.  Chief Baldwin said the county has a decibel meter to measure noise, but the Town does not.  He said the county has to go to the property line of the “problem property” and turn the instrument on to see how many decibels of noise it is between certain hours at night to be enforceable.  Chief Baldwin said charging people and convicting them is two different things because it is hard to prove.  He said he would check with the County to see if they have that instrument available for incidents here in the town. 

 

PUBLIC WORKS REPORT

Public Works Director Mike Crews said that since the last Council meeting he has visited the Campbell County Water Service Authority and looked at automatic flushers to help turn over the water in the town system.  He said he borrowed a loaner (flusher) and has been using it in areas around town.  He said that it really helped on the TTHM testing that was done recently.  He said that he is going to purchase 2 of these flushers.  He said that Carl Hamlett has been hired in the maintenance department, and Dale Rutledge has been hired part time for the water treatment plant. 

TOWN MANAGER REPORT

 

Town Manager Russell Thurston said that the Town has been awarded a sizeable grant from the Virginia Department of Health to help the Town study the water distribution system to ensure we deliver the freshest water to the citizens.  He said that he is working on another grant with USDA to look at the sewer lines.  He said that he is also working on the annual fire department grant.    He said that when Sheila Bradley (who represents Delegate James Edmunds) came to the last council meeting and talked about finding physicians to come to rural areas, she said a bill had been passed and became law to help provide scholarship funds for medical professionals coming out of residency who want to serve an “underserved” population.  He said the problem is that it was not funded.  He said that locally we need to form a committee with other small towns and lobby for the funding of the bill.  He said that the Rush Street project is moving along.  He said that landscaping will be done later in the year due to the warm temperatures.  He said that Sue at the front desk has been working on a project to compile a listing of vacant properties in the Town with an “MLS” type listing.  Mr. Thurston also said that the Town did sell a number of surplus vehicles and a good amount of money was brought in for those vehicles. 

 

Mayor Campbell said that we need to work on setting up a luncheon with Frank Ruff, James Edmonds and others to meet and let them know where our position is on the lack of physicians in the area. 

  • MOTION CONCERNING VINEYARD

 

Councilperson David asked if it was too late to sit down and try to negotiate something on the vineyard without getting lawyers involved.  Mayor Campbell said that the special use permit has been passed and the state allows 30 days to contest it which has also passed.  Vice Mayor Nowlin said that he thought that since the process is going on that the Town needs to go with what it has been instructed to do. 

A motion was made by Councilperson Joseph B. David, Jr. to try to have a meeting with the Monroes, and their lawyer and our lawyer if needed, and work out something concerning the vineyard without going to court.  The motion was seconded by Councilperson Laprade with Councilpersons Wilkes, David, and Laprade voting aye, Councilpersons Nowlin and Jean voting nay (vote was 3-2) and Councilperson Adams abstaining due to fact that he has been absent for several meetings.  He said he did not feel like he was up enough on the issue to vote.  Councilperson Jean said that at the last meeting he asked Mr. Dean Monroe and Mr. Michael Monroe to get with the Town Manager on the vineyard issue and work it out which was evidently not done.  Councilperson Jean asked Councilperson David would he be agreeable to an amendment to his motion to which Mr. David replied “yes”.  Councilperson Jean’s amendment was for Mr. Michael Monroe and Mr. Dean Monroe to write down what they thought was difficult to comply with and bring it to the proposed meeting.  Mr. Monroe said that he wanted to meet with the Town Council, not the lawyers, and not just the town manager.  He said he wanted to meet with the “decision makers”.  Mayor Campbell suggested the physical development committee meet with the Monroes as well as any council members that want to attend. 

Councilperson David restated his motion that the physical development committee, the Town manager as well as any council members that want to be present would meet with the Monroes to try to work this out among people without getting the lawyers involved.  Councilperson Jean amended Councilperson David’s motion to say that he wanted the Monroes to bring a list of things to the meeting that they see as being impossible for them to comply with.  The motion was seconded by Councilperson David.  The motion passed with a vote of 5-0 with Councilperson Adams abstaining.     

RESOLUTION FOR THE SEWER STUDY GRANT

 

Upon motion by Joseph B. David, Jr., seconded by James Nowlin, and unanimously carried, the Council voted to adopt the following resolution for the USDA Sewer Study Grant.

 

RESOLUTION OF GOVERNING BODY OF THE TOWN OF BROOKNEAL

           

            The governing body of the Town of Brookneal consisting of 7 members, in a duly called meeting held on the 11th day of August 2015, at which a quorum was present RESOLVED as follows;

            BE IT HEREBY RESOLVED that, in order to facilitate obtaining financial assistance from the United States of America, United States Department of Agriculture, Rural Development (the Government) in the development of a sewer study grant, to serve the community, the governing body does hereby adopt and abide by the covenants contained in the agreements, documents, and forms required by the Government to be executed.

            BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the town manager Russell B. Thurston of the Town Brookneal be authorized to execute on behalf of the Town of Brookneal the above-referenced agreements and to execute such other documents including, but not limited to, debt instruments and security instruments as may be required in obtaining the said financial assistance.

            This Resolution, along with a copy of the above-referenced documents, is hereby entered into the permanent minutes of the meetings of this Board.

                                                                                       TOWN OF BROOKNEAL

                                                                                 By ____________________________

Attest:

_________________________________                

CERTIFICATION

I hereby certify that the above resolution was duly adopted by the Town Council

of the Town of Brookneal in a duly assembled meeting on the 11th day of August, 2015.

________________________________________

                        Secretary/Clerk

 

REQUEST FOR TRANSFERS OF APPROPRIATION

 

Upon motion by Barbara Laprade, seconded by Richard Adams, and unanimously carried, the Council voted to approve the following transfers of appropriation.

REQUEST FOR TRANSFERS OF APPROPRIATION

 

To: Brookneal Town Council

Date: July 14, 2015

 

The following Appropriation Transfers are requested for FY2015:

 

Category—Revenue INCREASE       New Total       Balance in Account

Town Council—Other—01-1101-5801 $       94.40     $    9,277.32       $           0.00 

            

Category--Expense DECREASE      New Total       Balance in Account

Streets—Salaries---01-4102-1001 $       94.40     $ 21,297.27       $     4,637.15

To cover the Town Council/Other line item through FY2015.

 

Category--Expense INCREASE      New Total        Balance in Account

Books & Subscriptions—01-1227-5411   $    58.60        $     278.60 $          0.00

Category—Expense DECREASE     New Total       Balance in Account

Streets--Salaries—01-4102-1001   $    58.60        $21,238.67         $   4,578.55

To cover the books/subscriptions line item through FY2015.

 

Category--Expense INCREASE      New Total        Balance in Account

Recreation—Heating—01-7104-5102   $ 1,747.33      $  9,928.61 $          0.00

Category—Expense DECREASE     New Total       Balance in Account

Streets—Salaries—01-4102-1001   $ 1,747.33      $19,491.34         $   2,831.22

Covered summer fill-up in FY2015 since there was monies left in this fiscal year.

Category--Expense INCREASE      New Total        Balance in Account

Recreation—Repairs & Maint.—01-7104-5407      $ 4,713.37      $14,570.38 $          0.00

Category—Expense DECREASE     New Total       Balance in Account

Streets—Salaries—01-4102-1001     $ 2,831.22      $16,660.12         $          0.00

Category—Expense DECREASE     New Total       Balance in Account

Streets—Temp—01-4102-1004     $ 1,882.15      $  1,617.85         $      417.97

To cover the cost of repairs to the ball park fence and the cost to purchase a new stove for the community building kitchen.

Respectfully requested by:

_________________________________ __________________________________

Treasurer Date

 

 

REQUEST FOR TRANSFERS OF APPROPRIATION

 

To: Brookneal Town Council

Date: July 14, 2015

 

The following Appropriation Transfers are requested for FY2016:

 

Category—Revenue INCREASE       New Total       Balance in Account

Streets—Temp—01-4102-1004 $  3,100.00     $   3,600.00       $     2,773.05  

            

Category--Expense DECREASE      New Total       Balance in Account

Streets—Salaries--01-4102-1001 $  3,100.00     $ 19,863.00       $    19,863.00

To cover the cost of temp employee through the middle of August 2015.

Respectfully requested by:

_________________________________ __________________________________

Treasurer Date

COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATIONS

 

There were no committee recommendations.

 

 

ITEMS FROM TOWN COUNCIL

 

Councilperson Laprade said that she had received some calls concerning the new traffic light patterns. After some discussion about what has changed with the new traffic light being installed, Mr. Crews said he would call VDOT about the problems that are occurring.  

 

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

Upon motion from Robert Jean, seconded by Mark Wilkes, and unanimously carried, Mayor Campbell announced that the August 11, 2015, meeting was adjourned. 

___________________________                        ____________________________

Bobbie A. Waller                                                Phyllis L. Campbell

Clerk/Treasurer                                                Mayor

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