MINUTES

SEVIER COUNTY QUORUM COURT MEETING

2:00 P.M., MONDAY JUNE 13, 2022

 

The Sevier County Quorum Court met at 2:00 P.M., Monday, June 13, 2022, in the Sevier County Courthouse Courtroom with County Judge Greg Ray presiding.  The meeting was opened with prayer followed by the Pledge of Allegiance led by Judge Ray. The roll was called with the following Justices present:   Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens,  Angie Walker,  and Greg Wright. Absent – David Wright and Roger Whitmore. Upon a motion by Roxy Stephens and second by Greg Wright, the Quorum Court voted to dispense with the reading of the minutes of the last meeting and to approve the minutes as emailed. A roll call vote was taken. Yes –Marilyn Archer,  Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens,  Angie Walker, and Greg Wright. Absent – David Wright and Roger Whitmore. Roger Whitmore arrived at 2:08. No – None. The motion passed.

 

Committee and Other Reports

 

Lori House, CEO of Sever County Medical Center was present to report on the progress of the new hospital construction and Financial report for the same. Ms. House presented a Financial statement produced by Horne Group. She reported that the expected completion date is still firm for the Hospital keys to be turned over on August 5. Lori introduced three new employees: Brian Gathright – ER Director, Brandy Gore – Patient Care Unit Director, Melissa Wright – Radiology Director. Roxy Stephens asked about the helicopter pad for AirEvac. Lori informed the court that they are negotiating with the contractors due to some billing issues where the hospital is being charged for some things that should be charged to AirEvac.

 

New Business

 

  1. The first agenda item is a request for an additional appropriation of $23,329 to the Sevier County Airport Fund, Airport Dept., Other professional services to cover final expenses for an Airport Layout Plan Update, such amount to be reimbursed from a grant through the Federal Aviation Administration. Angie Walker made a motion to approve the appropriation. Greg Wright seconded the motion. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed.
  2. Agenda item 2 is a request to appropriate an additional $4000 for a new Firewall at the jail. $2000 will be paid from Sheriff budget 1000.0400.4004 and $2000 will be paid from Jail budget 3017.0418.4004.Sheriff Gentry explained the need for a newer version that would be compatible with newer software versions. Earl Battiest made a motion seconded by Angie Walker to approve the appropriation. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed.
  3. Next on the agenda was a proposed ordinance allowing the County to conduct business with P.J. Minor who is an employee of the county. County Clerk Akin handed out a version that was different than the one sent out in the Quorum Court agenda packet. She explained that the newer version handed out is changed to allow more than the painting job to be done on the Election Commission van. P. J. has apparently been doing some decal work for the county as well. The 2nd version of the Ordinance was read by Treasurer Heather Barnes. A motion was made by Roxy Stephens to suspend the rules and place the ordinance on the 2nd reading by title only. Angie Walker seconded the motion. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed. Heather read the ordinance for the 2nd time by title. A motion was made by Roxy Stephens and seconded by Angie Walker to suspend the rules and place the ordinance on the 3rd reading by title only. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed. Greg Wright said he did not agree with that. He suggested  that the original Ordinance be passed as that was an agreement made prior to P. J. working for the county. The Judge  suggested that bids be taken for the decal work. A motion was made by Roxy Stephens and seconded by Earl Battiest to approve the original ordinance regarding the painting of the Election Commission van at this time. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed.
  4. The next agenda item is a request for approval of a Resolution Declaring Support for the J. Lynn Helms – Sevier County Airport Improvement Project and Authorizing the County Judge to Accept a Grant on Behalf of the Sevier County Airport Commission. Judge Ray read the Resolution. Angie Walker made a motion to approve the Resolution seconded by Greg Wright. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed.
  5. Item five on the agenda is a request for the re-appointment of Felix “Skip” Bell to the Sevier County Hospital Board of Governors. Roxy Stephens made a motion to approve the re-appointment. Roger Whitmore seconded the motion. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed.
  6. Judge Ray asked if someone would entertain a motion to hear a non-agenda item. Angie Walker made a motion to suspend the rule in order to hear Non- Agenda items. Roxy Stephens seconded the motion. Clerk Akin explained that the new owner of the Country Club had called to say that ABC had informed them that in order for them to apply for an On-Premises Drink licensure the county would have to have an ordinance that provided the procedure for them to do so. Clerk Akin read the ordinance. Angie Walker made a motion to suspend the rule and place the ordinance on the 2nd reading by title only. Earl Battiest seconded the motion. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed. Judge Ray read the ordinance for the second reading by title only. Angie Walker made a motion seconded by Earl Battiest to suspend the rule and place the ordinance on the third reading by title only. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed. Judge Ray read the ordinance for the third reading by title only. Greg Wright made a motion to pass the Ordinance. The motion was seconded by Angie Walker. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed by a 2/3 vote and is to be published immediately in a local newspaper.

 

Angie Walker asked if everyone got a copy of an authorization to release information to be sent out with this            week’s payroll. Clerk Akin stated that she had not given it to anyone other than her. Clerk Akin explained that Gallagher Ins. Is requesting birth dates on employees. Clerk Akin has refused to give that information without express consent from the employee. She further explained that Gallagher Ins.  has requested and received more information than is usually given by her for an insurance quote. Angie Walker stated that this was needed for an accurate quote. Clerk Akin stated that even with this information the quote could not be accurate due to turnover in the jail and new employees at the hospital. Angie Walker said the hospital was getting a separate quote. She also asked about changing the authorization form so that the information could be given to other insurance companies that might want to give the county a quote. Clerk Akin said she was not comfortable doing so and would not give out any birthdate unless the employee signed a release to do so. The release states that the form should be turned in immediately if the release is granted.

 

 Old Business -  Discussion of raises for county employees.

                 Earl Battiest made a motion for this to be tabled until the July meeting so that the Payroll department could gather required information to pay premium pay from ARPA Funds. Angie Walker seconded the motion. There was discussion about who would or would not receive this. Earl explained that the premium pay would involve employees who had worked through the pandemic. Regular bonus type pay would have to come from CARES ACT Funds. A Roll Call Vote was taken- Yes – Marilyn Archer, Earl Battiest, Kenneth Currence, Evelyn Keels, Roxy Stephens, Angie Walker, Roger Whitmore, and Greg Wright. No – None, Absent - David Wright. The motion passed.

 

Announcements – Justice Greg Wright stated that when he came into the courthouse.today, there was a lot of trash piled up in the hallway across from the elevators. He stated that it appears that there is still a leak in the roof as there was a place in the ceiling in the same area as the trash that the ceiling tiles needed to be replaced. Judge Ray stated that he was sure the janitor had been in offices in that area of the courthouse. Something could have been said to the janitor.

 Judge Ray mentioned that Chapel Hill Road and Dogtown Road are closed.

                 

Adjournment

With no further business to discuss, Greg Wright made a motion to adjourn. The motion was seconded by Marilyn Archer. The motion passed with a unanimous voice vote.

 

               

Respectfully Submitted,

 

 

 

Debbie Akin

County Clerk

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