Dare commissioners act on financing

Published 7:47 am Wednesday, October 13, 2021

On Oct. 4, Dare County commissioners approved several financial moves on itemized and consent agendas.

In 2020, Dare County created a Master Trust Agreement for two required trust accounts: Other Post-Employment Benefits and Law Enforcement Officers’ Special Separation Allowance.

In February 2021, the Dare Board of Commissioners funded the law enforcement trust liability and finance department staff started the process of establishing an additional account in the Department of State Treasurer’s Ancillary Government Participant Investment Program, where the county’s Other Post-employment Benefit monies are invested.

In June, the Department of State Treasurer responded to the county’s attorney that the Master Trust Agreement cannot be used with the program “because of administrative constraints imposed by the service provider.”

Finance director David Clawson told the commissioners that the service provider is Black Rock, which has provided five-year average earnings of 14.9%.

In response to the Department of State Treasurer, Dare County’s trust attorneys, Parker Poe Adams and Bernstein, drafted separate trust agreements for the two funds to replace the Master Trust Agreement and Dare’s commissioners adopted both restated irrevocable trust agreements.

The commissioner’s adopted a reimbursement resolution for possible use with the Buxton-Avon beach nourishment project. The Buxton-Avon project will be released for bids Oct. 18. The bids will be opened Nov. 22, 2021.

Collateral for financing the project is the Dare County Justice Center. However, in a just-in-case move, the commissioners adopted a resolution that lets the $285,000 Fessenden Center repair project be used for collateral for beach nourishment debt if needed.

County manager Robert L. Outten reported to the commissioners about the schedule for meeting with the Local Government Commission, which must review and approve local government financing. All of Dare County’s paperwork for the 2022 northern beach towns’ re-nourishment project is complete. However, the local government commission requires all permits to be granted and submission of previous fiscal year local government financial statements, which includes statements from four municipalities and the county.

The financer of the northern beach project will not hold the interest rate, which is 0.89%, past November. Clawson told the commissioners that interest rates have risen a quarter of one percent since bids were opened on project financing.

Outten said that the project budget had included significantly more interest.

In the consent agenda, the commissioners approved:

– A correction to the Capital Project Ordinance for S2021A Installment Financing for Manteo and Kill Devil Hills properties which was adopted July 19, 2021. That ordinance understated debt costs of issuance by $600 and overstated Manteo building renovations by $600.

– A $48,726 budget amendment for the water department for electrical, plumbing, structural and drainfield additions to the Frisco Distribution Building project.

– A new full time administrative specialist position for the Environmental Health Unit in the Public Health Division. Before the recession, the unit had 10 environmental health specialists and two administrative specialists. The unit is currently staffed with eight specialists and one administrative specialist. The budget request reports that permits for new septic permits have increased by 36%, rewrite permits by 63%, repair permits by 51% and additional permits by 38%. The position is funded by eliminating two part-time positions.

The commissioners made the following appointments:

– Land Transfer Tax Appeals Board: As recommended by the Town of Manteo, James Ayers to replace June Neri, who moved out of the area.

– Roanoke Island Community Center Board: reappointed Jonique Lee, Betty Selby and Clarence Lewis.

– Health and Human Services Board: reappointed L’Tanya Murray.

– Library Board – Dare: reappointed Janice Willis and Mike Hogan and appointed Mary Lou Hoffert of Southern Shores, Ruth Perkins of Kitty Hawk and Jo Ann Wilson-Harfst of Kill Devil Hills.

– Fessenden Center Advisory Board: appointed Edward J. O’Brien Jr. to fill the Avon vacancy and Megan Vayette to fill the at-large vacancy.

– Juvenile Crime Prevention Council: appointed Matthew McGough and Paul William Pollock

All actions by the commissioners were unanimously on a 6-0 vote with commissioner Rob Ross excused.

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