December 14, 2016

SPECIAL GRIEVANCE HEARING:

CALL TO ORDER @ 6:47 pm

ROLL CALL           x Mr. Anderson                       x Mr. Takacs                             x Chief Lutz

x Mr. Donaldson                   x Mr. Vest                      x Ms. Clapp                                           x Mr. Gauntner                       x Mr. Wayman            x Ms. Dame

PLEDGE OF ALLIGENCE

SPECIAL MEETING – Grievance Hearing:

Stacy Dame, Legal Counsel, requested that the Union Local 3141 summarize their grievance and allow the Fire Chief and the Fire Board the opportunity to respond and determine how they wish to proceed.

Lt. Brian Faulhammer stated that the Union wants only an acknowledgement from the Board that the contract was not followed and that the Union was “kept out of the loop” regarding the Insurance Committee meetings.

Chief Lutz detailed the Administration time line beginning on 9/5/16 with the start of the Form Fire documentation and ending with the filing of the 11/23/16 Appeal.

The Board acknowledged that the contract was not followed and that the 60 day window was not met. They apologized to the Union for the lack of communication throughout the process.

Mr. Takacs and Mr. Gauntner admonished both the District Administration and the Union to pay better attention to the timing of this process in future years and directed them to aggressively communicate with each other in order to keep negotiations on track. Per Mr. Takacs, a contract establishes rules that both parties have to meet and is a protection feature for both sides. He stated that good communication is key and specifically requested that, in the future, the Union warn the Board and the Administration at the earliest possible date, rather than late in the process, of any possible contract vi0lations.

Motion was made acknowledging that the 60 day window was not met and that the contract was not followed by Madison Fire District and offered apologies to the Union. The Board directed Ms. Dame to send the appropriate written decision to the Firefighters Association.

Motion by: Mr. Gauntner             Seconded by: Mr. Anderson         ROLL CALL: All ayes

Motion to Adjourn Special Meeting and Convene Regular Session

@7:00 pm by: Mr. Donaldson      Seconded by: Mr. Wayman           ROLL CALL: All ayes

REGULAR SESSION

Minutes of 11/16/16 Regular Session

Motion to approve as presented by: Mr. Donaldson                Seconded by: Mr. Wayman

ROLL CALL: All ayes

Minutes of 11/21/16 Special Meeting

Motion to approve as presented by: Mr. Gauntner                  Seconded by: Mr. Anderson

ROLL CALL: All ayes

Minutes of 12/05/16 Special Meeting – For the record only – no business was conducted.

Motion to approve as presented by: Mr. Wayman                   Seconded by: Mr. Anderson

ROLL CALL: All ayes                               

Bills ($43,913.65) and payroll ($75,407.44) totaling $119,321.09 are motioned for acceptance and payment.

Mr. Gauntner asked if the payroll figure includes longevity. Per Ms. Clapp, it does not.

Mr. Takacs asked why the District occasionally buys non-uniform clothing items in bulk (Professional Threads Check #9700). Lt. Sopko explained that, to save on cost, sometimes an item that is wanted by several employees is ordered in exact quantities needed that are immediately charged to individual clothing allowance accounts or deducted from payroll. No stock is maintained on these specialty items.

Per Mr. Takacs’ request, Ms. Clapp reported that Visa Checks # 9727 and #9729 are being amended to correctly reflect account distribution amounts.

Motion to approve bills and payroll as amended by: Mr. Takacs

Seconded by: Mr. Wayman                                                                       ROLL CALL: All ayes

2016 Financial Report:

Ms. Joanne Clapp, District CFO, detailed the November 2016 Fund Summary including Revenues,Expenditures and Overtime Wages ($41,810 less than 2015). Mr. Takacs commented that he is still unclear on how to decipher the Fund Summary reports submitted to the Board and requests that she continue to work on developing reports that are easier to read and reconcile.

Resolution #16-24 2016 Amended Certificate of Estimated Resources:

This resolution is an emergency measure for the necessary amendment of the District’s 2016 Certificate of Estimated Resources due to funds received during the year as follows:

  1. Insurance Settlement for replacement of Squad #2132 (General Fund)
  2. Insurance Settlement for replacement of Squad #2132 Equipment (EMS)
  3. FEMA Grant monies awarded for Hose (General Fund)
  4. Transfer of $15,000 from the General Fund to the Earned Benefits FundMotion to approve by: Mr. Wayman     Seconded by: Mr. Donaldson     Mr. Takacs requested that the amounts and totals shown on this resolution be reviewed for accuracy. Per Board consensus, the discussion on Resolution #16-24 will continue later in the meeting once the figures have been verified. OPENING PUBLIC PORTION: None to report.COMMITTEE REPORTS:Resolution #16-26 2016-2017 District Medical Insurance:This resolution approves the Medical Insurance Policy as recommended by the Madison Fire District Insurance Committee (10.8% increase) and authorizes the Fiscal Officer to remit payments pursuant to the contract terms. Motion to approve by: Mr. Gauntner     Seconded by: Mr. Anderson     ROLL CALL: All ayesOLD BUSINESS:               Resolution #16-23 – Penguin Mechanical, Inc. Contracted Services:Motion to remove this resolution from the table by: Mr. Gauntner Resolution #16-23 – Penguin Mechanical, Inc. (cont.):                                12-14-16Stacy Dame, Legal Counsel, reported that the Proposal & Acceptance for these contracted services has been received and distributed to the Board for their review. Her only recommendation is to strike/remove the terms “1/2 upon Acceptance, ½ upon Completion” at the bottom of the Proposal prior to signing since the agreed upon terms noted in the body of the Proposal and Invoice #37333 dated 9/1/16 are $180/due 10th of each month. Mr. Vest also acknowledged approval of “payment in full” as an option. Motion to approve Resolution #16-23 as amended by: Mr. Anderson         (continued from discussion earlier in the meeting):Ms. Clapp handed out an updated version of Resolution #16-24 for Board review. Stacy Dame reintroduced Resolution #16-24 for discussion – This resolution is an emergency measure for the necessary amendment of the District’s 2016 Certificate of Estimated Resources due to funds received during the year.Motion to approve Resolution #16-24 as updated by: Mr. Gauntner             Original Second to Approve Withdrawn by: Mr. Wayman                 ROLL CALL: All ayes

CHIEF’S REPORT:                                                                                 

Motion to Rescind Original Motion to Approve Resolution #16-24 by: Mr. Gauntner

Mr. Takacs regretfully requested that the Board turn their focus back on Resolution #16-24 and once again recalculate the new updated amounts and totals which still do not balance. Per Board consensus, the discussion on Resolution #16-24 will resume again later in the meeting once the figures are again reviewed and verified.

Mr. Vest, Takacs and Gauntner reminded the District Fiscal Officer and Legal Counsel that all Resolutions must be complete and verified, must be added to the Agenda, and must be included in the Board Folders for advance review by the Friday prior to each Board meeting.

Seconded by: Mr. Wayman                                                                       ROLL CALL: All ayes 

Resolution #16-24 2016 Amended Certificate of Estimated Resources -

Seconded by: Mr. Donaldson                                                                   ROLL CALL: All ayes

Resolution #16-23 authorizes the Madison Fire District and the Fire Chief to enter into a contract with Penguin Mechanical, Inc. for Air Conditioning, Furnace, and Hot Water Tank Maintenance Services from September 1, 2016 to December 31, 2017, and authorizing payments therein.

Seconded by: Mr. Wayman                                                                                                                                                                                               

Opticoms: Chief Lutz reported that the Opticom Transmitters in Squads #2122 and #2142 are out of service. Replacements are on order. Lt. Terry Sopko reported that since the November Board meeting, ODOT has tested and adjusted the Opticom at Northridge (Rt. 20) and Hubbard (Rt. 528). District vehicles were used to test the activation range: Northbound and Westbound tested at 1400-1600 feet; Eastbound at 700 feet; and Southbound at 860 feet. ODOT has committed to return and adjust the mirrors to improve the Eastbound and Southbound range which will again be tested by District vehicles. Additionally, the Lake County Engineers Office has agreed to trim an overgrown tree hanging over the southbound roadway near the intersection sometime this winter.   Mr. Vest asked what signalization in Madison does not have an Opticom.   Lt. Sopko replied that there is no Opticom at DeRubertis and Rt. 20, K-Mart and Rt. 20 and McMackin and Rt. 20. He further reported that County Line and Rt. 20 has a GPS type Opticom which does not work with District vehicles.   Mr. Vest commented that he knows it is a significant cost, but it is his opinion that, for everyone’s safety, every signal in the community should have an Opticom.

 

Water Pressure Issues @ St. #3: Per Chief Lutz, he has been working with Dwayne Bailey at Madison Village to find the cause of water pressure issues at St.#3.

VFIS Accident & Sickness Policy: Chief Lutz reported that the District will deduct $1 annually from all employee payrolls for the VFIS Accident & Sickness Policy so that everyone will be eligible to receive VFIS compensation along with Workers Compensation. Mr. Gauntner asked how that will affect those who are not a part of the policy. Chief Lutz replied that everyone at the District is covered under this policy including the Fire Board members.

 

 Inspection Report: In Board Folder for your review.

Fire/EMS Calls: Chief Lutz reported that the number of Madison and AMA fire calls has increased recently as has the number of motor vehicle accidents on I/90.

 

East End FIU: Chief Lutz advised the Board that the East End FIU will be meeting at the St. #3 Training Center on the second Tuesday of each month throughout 2017.

 

Resignations: Two of the District new hires have resigned; one has relocated to Texas; one has accepted a full time position in Conneaut. Conneaut’s union will not allow him to work part time.

 

Library In-Service Meeting: Due to a renovation project at the Madison Library, library staff held their In-Service meeting in the St. #3 Training Center on Dec. 12th.

 

Reminder – Upcoming Events: Madison Fire District will be having a toy and food drive with Walmart on Friday, December 16th.

Labor Management: Chief Lutz reported that he has met with Full and Part Time representatives regarding the following:

 

Manning – Will continue with 7 maximum and 5 minimum per shift.

New Levy– Since the new Levy is only a “band-aid”, the group is reviewing several areas in the overall operation to determine where additional cost savings changes could be implemented to best utilize the new revenue. 

 

Management Team Proposal – Pages 6-9):Staffing:Per Chief Lutz, communication issues are currently being addressed with respect to which of the two Shift Lieutenants is in charge on A, B and C shift. In an effort to resolve this dilemma, the group is looking at a proposal that would implement an Incident Management Team Concept which generally consists of a Commander and General Support Staff (Operations, Planning and Logistics, Finance). Implementation of the proposed new Management Team would first entail promoting (3) Battalion Chiefs from within the Organization. Their Administrative responsibilities would include, but are not limited to, the Budgetary process, financial reports and compiling research data. The Battalion Chiefs would be in charge of their respective shift and, with the support of the Shift Lieutenant and the Part Time Representative, would run the District during their 24-hour period including times when the Fire Chief is out of the District Administrative Office.Since the District cannot afford to go through a hiring process to select the Battalion Chiefs, it has been suggested that, in January 2017, all District employees be briefed on the proposed Management Team Concept and let them choose from the (6) Lieutenants who they feel would be the best leadership for the Organization. The promotion would consist of a title and responsibility, but would not include additional compensation at this time. The proposed Management Team would meet monthly and would work with the Fire Chief as a General Support Staff to develop strategic planning and goal setting for the future of the Organization (operational improvements, cost saving ideas for funding, Manning support, etc.). The District Chief Fiscal Officer would continue to attend all Management meetings to assist with Budgetary issues. The (3) remaining Shift Lieutenants and the Part Time Representatives would meet with the Management Team to review and recommend changes with respect to District operational concerns, Fire and EMS issues, morale, 911 Services, and the District’s mission with respect to serving the residents of Madison. Currently FF Bill Weema (A) and FF Jesse Selby (B) attend Management meetings as

Representatives for Part Time Personnel and the new proposal includes adding a 3rd Representative to the Part Time support staff. 

 Management Team Proposal Discussion Topics: Overall Proposal: Mr. Vest commented that, although he appreciated the initiative of the Fire Chief and Labor Management in researching and presenting the Management Team Proposal, the Board would need time to process all the information, ask the appropriate questions, etc. in order to fully understand the vast amount of information presented before moving forward or implementing any portions of the proposed plan.Mr. Gauntner reported that he and Mr. Takacs had met with Chief Lutz and Labor Management for 4 hours a couple of weeks earlier and had asked Chief Lutz to start setting up the proposed sub committees and strongly suggested that he establish a better line of communication between the himself and the Lieutenants, get more input from the Firefighters and Paramedics, and develop future plans and guidelines for everyone to follow. Mr. Takacs agreed that creating a more defined common direction is a huge step in the right direction, however, he also agreed with Mr. Vest that the scope of the proposal is so broad that it will require a great deal of time to digest and implement a step at a time. He stated that perhaps it may be necessary for the Board to have (2) meetings per month as Chief Lutz suggested.     

Lt. Baker commented that paying split percentages from the two funds makes it convoluted and difficult to read financial reports because one must reference more than one place within the report to see the total budget and associated expenses for any given item (for example – Chief’s Vehicle has parts and labor in the General fund and parts and labor in the EMS fund). Mr. Donaldson asked why wages and expenses were originally set up to be split between the two funds. Ms. Clapp explained that the split has always coincided with the budget and, depending on revenues anticipated in each fund for any given year, a split percentage was determined and applied to payments accordingly. She reported that the split in 2017 would probably be 85% General and 15% EMS. She agreed however that reducing the percentage to zero in the EMS Fund for everything except for Part Time Wages will simplify the budget process and make financial reports easier to read.Mr. Takacs stated he has concerns about using EMS funds for all Part Time Wages because it is his understanding that only EMS expenses can be paid from the EMS Fund. He explained that a simple way to determine what kind of expense you are looking at is to ask the question, “Would the fire district have this expense if we did not do EMS services”? Per Mr. Takacs, if we would still have the expense (i.e. Chief’s vehicle, electric bill, etc.), then it should be paid out of the General Fund. If we would not have the expense (without EMS services), then it must be paid out of the EMS Fund (i.e. ambulances and related expenses). He commented that Madison has a mixed operation and Part Timers are not assigned exclusively to EMS duties, they are also Firefighters, so the entire Part Time Wage expense cannot be paid out of EMS (and vice versa). Furthermore, he wondered how the District can buy a defibrillator or a cot or a bandage out of the General Fund when it is clearly an EMS expense.   In his opinion, the EMS Fund should accurately reflect costs specific to the operation of EMS services and the Board needs to be able to see those costs (and vice versa with respect to the General Fund). No change was made to the Chart of Accounts with respect to the manner in which the Fiscal Officer calculates and tracks wages and expenses.

Chief Lutz reported that, rather than pay all wages and all expenses out of the General Fund and EMS Fund at a rate of 65% and 35% respectively, he suggests that everything be paid out of the General Fund except Part Time Wages (which can be paid out of the EMS Fund). The EMS Fund has more restrictions while the General Fund is more flexible with regard to what can be paid out of each revenue fund. Per Lutz, splitting every payment is a cumbersome task and changing to the new proposed breakdown would simplify the budget. Joanne Clapp stated that she must manually split out an invoiced amount to be entered into UAN for each payment and that the new proposal would eliminate possible math errors. Chief Lutz reported that he has passed this idea by the State Auditor’s Office and they see no problem making the change (written decision on file).

Chart of Accounts:

Lt. Baker stated that you cannot trend month to month in UAN – only year-to-date – so Excel is a better evaluation tool for the reason that you can add columns and link things which will eliminate math errors – it does all the work for you automatically when changes are made during the budget planning process. He agreed that we will still need to use UAN for the completed budget and daily/monthly/yearly record keeping, but UAN does not give you the opportunity to experiment and explore different budget scenarios during the planning process. Chief Lutz explained, for example, that changes made to a 3-5 year Excel budget would create a ripple effect as it updates the budget across the board. Mr. Vest stated that a 5 year budget, in the end result, is not realistic and he has yet to see a government projection that comes out accurately, although, he agreed with Mr. Gauntner that the District needs some sort of ballpark plan.

Mr. Donaldson noted that Excel is a good tool for summarizing budget data for discussion purposes and visualizing changes. Mr. Gauntner remarked that he considered UAN to be cumbersome and that it doesn’t always allow you to do what you want to do in the report function.

Mr. Vest asked if the newly proposed Excel budget format meant that the Administration was recommending abandoning the UAN software. Both Chief Lutz and Joanne stated that they were not, but believe the Excel format will offer a clearer understanding of the budget. Mr. Vest observed that there are many ways to use UAN that, with effective communication between the Administration and Board members, will render the same kind of clarity.

Excel Budget Sheet:

Committee #5 -Fleet Purchases and Maintenance – Chair Lt. Henry

Committee #4 -Gear/Clothing and Ballistics – Chair Lt. Sopko.

Committee #3 -Training for both Fire/EMS – Chair Lt. Meister.

Committee #2 -IT/Radios/Computers- Chairs Lt. Van Kramer/Lt. Faulhammer.

Committee #1 – Budget/Staffing/Capital – Chair Chief Lutz with Joanne Clapp, Lt Baker, FF Weema. Lt. Meister.  This committee proposes to develop an interactive Excel document to further modify and clarify the chart of accounts within the budget for decision making and tracking purposes. This Excel spreadsheet will be designed with automated formulas and links that will facilitate a ripple effect throughout future budget years as changes are made.

In addition, the proposal would establish (5) Core Committees to develop a five year plan and will engage more personnel to help with research and to make recommendations for future purchases, operations and strategic planning. All District personnel are invited to participate on these committees. Chief Lutz requested that the Board consider scheduling (2) Fire Board meetings in February and March to facilitate research workshops.

Sub Committees:

Fire Inspections: Chief Lutz reported that, due to reduced manning, it continues to be difficult to conduct the (700) Business Fire Safety Inspections, numerous Construction Plan Reviews and Inspections, and Fire Protection Inspections and Acceptance Tests required in Madison annually. He handed out a draft Fee Schedule for Board review and copies of the Ohio Fire Code that authorizes charging fees for various Permits, Inspections and Plan Reviews. He further suggested that the Board consider hiring a part time Inspector for 20-24 hours per week @ $16.00/hour to be funded by the aforementioned fees.  

 

Mr. Vest stated that he was not necessarily comfortable with charging a business for an annual inspection if the business has always been compliant. He stated that he saw merit in charging for businesses that are non-compliant and require many follow –up inspections.

Mr. Gauntner stated that he didn’t see any difference between charging for an Annual Fire Inspection and the Zoning Department charging for a Permit. In both cases, an inspector has to go out and conduct an inspection to assure that codes are met. Mr. Gauntner projected that future business development will entail large plan reviews which will require many hours of work to ensure that all safety issues are addressed.

Chief Lutz requested that the Board consider the various options for discussion at a later date:

Perry/Madison Ladder Truck: Per Board request at the November 16th, 2016 Regular Session, Chief Lutz reported that the District has, to date, invested $32,941.00 in the Ladder Truck (our half), has responded (6) times to calls in Madison, and has only been used once at the Madison Country Club Fire. He and the Officers have reconsidered the District’s involvement in the joint ownership of the Pierce 75’ Ladder Truck and recommend that we approach Chief McDonald with Perry Fire to see if they are interested in buying out Madison’s half investment. If Perry is not in a position to do a buyout, perhaps they may agree to sell the truck outright and split the proceeds. Chief Lutz asked for the Board’s opinion on how to proceed. Per general Board consensus, Chief Lutz was directed to schedule a meeting with Chief McDonald to see what Perry wants to do.  

Resolution #16-24 2016 Amended Certificate of Estimated Resources:

Ms. Clapp handed out a second updated version of Resolution #16-24 for Board review.

Stacy Dame reintroduced Resolution #16-24 for discussion – This resolution is an emergency measure for the necessary amendment of the District’s 2016 Certificate of Estimated Resources due to funds received during the year.

Motion to approve Resolution #16-24 as updated by: Mr. Wayman

Seconded by: Mr. Donaldson       ROLL CALL: Vest Yea; Wayman Yea; Anderson Yea;

Donaldson Yea; Gauntner Nay; Takacs Nay.

Motion Passed

OLD BUSINESS:                                                                                                               12-14-16

Resolution #16-25 2017 Temporary Appropriations:

Stacy Dame introduced Resolution #16-25 authorizing the Fiscal Officer of the Madison Fire District to establish Temporary Appropriations for the year 2017.

Motion to approve by: Mr. Wayman     Seconded by: Mr. Donaldson

ROLL CALL: Wayman Yea; Anderson Nay; Donaldson Yea; Gauntner Nay; Takacs Nay; Vest Yea.

Motion Voted Down.

Mr. Takacs explained that he voted no because the document he was given was not correct and the motion did not specify “as amended”. Mr. Gauntner agreed with Mr. Takacs that there were factual mistakes in the document issued. Mr. Vest requested that Ms. Clapp take the time to amend Resolution 16-25 to include the correct calculations and verbiage, and issue a new Resolution number (16-27) so that a subsequent vote could take place later in the meeting.

Mr. Vest, Takacs, Anderson, Wayman and Gauntner reminded the District Fiscal Officer once again that all Resolutions and other financial documentation must be evaluated, adjusted and verified before being issued to the Board for review and/or vote.

Resolution #16-27 2017 Temporary Appropriations:

Ms. Clapp handed out an amended version of Resolution #16-25 under the new Resolution #16-27 for Board review.

Stacy Dame introduced Resolution #16-27 authorizing the Fiscal Officer of the Madison Fire District to establish Temporary Appropriations for the year 2017.

Motion to approve by: Mr. Gauntner                             Seconded by: Mr. Wayman

ROLL CALL: All ayes – Motion Passed.

CLOSING PUBLIC PORTION:Lt. Baker reported Central Communications dispatched Madison Fire for a structure fire during a Full Time Union meeting that last Sunday and all the Union members responded to the call. As a Shift Officer, he thanked them for their selfless service and asked the Board to acknowledge the commitment of the Full Time and Part Time staff.

CLOSING BOARD PORTION:

Mr. Gauntner acknowledged the tough week due to weather-related MVA’s and structural fires and thanked the Firefighters for all their hard work.

Mr. Anderson also thanked the staff for their recent service to his family.

Mr. Takacs reminded the Fiscal Officer that, at the November 16th meeting, she had committed to revalidating her understated salary amount reported in UAN (September) and reporting the difference at the December meeting. She reported that the discrepancy was caused by an adjustment made for the Fire/EMS split percentage incorrectly applied at 50%/50% rather than 65%/35% from January through September.

Motion to adjourn to Executive Session to discuss Personnel/Employee Discipline

@ 8:09 pm by: Mr. Anderson      Seconded by: Mr. Gauntner                    

ROLL CALL: Donaldson Yea; Gauntner Yea; Takacs Yea; Vest Yea; Wayman Nay; Anderson Yea. Motion Passed.

Executive Session Attendees: Fire Board, Legal Counsel, Madison Village Mayor Sam Britton

No Regular Session business to follow.

Mr. Vest reconvened Regular Session @ 10:44 pm.

Motion to adjourn Regular Session with no further business @10:45 pm by: Mr. Anderson Seconded by: Mr. Gauntner                     ROLL CALL: Wayman Nay; Anderson Yea;

Donaldson Yea; Gauntner Yea;

Takacs Yea; Vest Yea.

Motion Passed.

 

_______________________                           _______________________

Mr. Mark V. Vest, Chairman                                 Nila Brass, District Clerk