CALL TO ORDER The Board meeting of the Columbia Irrigation District was called to order by President Shawver at 1:00 pm . Present at the meeting were:
|Vince Shawver, President||Gary Weatherly, JUB Engineering|
|Matthew Morrell, Vice President||Tom Cowan, Attorney|
|Jerry Sleater, Director||Howard Ellison, Interim Manager|
|Jim Gose, Director||Pat Loftus, Operations Foreman|
|Bonnie Kulp, Recorder|
Guests: Stan King, Shiela Thackam, Sherry Thackham
When President Shawver asked if there was any public comment, Mr. Stan King, patron of the District, made comments pertaining to his opinions on the hiring process for the new District manager. He stated the interim manager should have recused himself and by not doing so compromised the honesty, fairness and integrity of the Board.
President Shawver agreed with Mr. King but stated the Board did follow legal process. He also stated the process was fair and it did not affect the outcome of filling the vacant position. Mr. King stated the only way to make it fair is to start the process over to restore honesty and fairness giving everyone equal chance. In order to keep this from happening again, President Shawver stated he would like a policy that states a board member cannot apply for a management position unless he completely resigns from the Board. Attorney, Tom Cowan, stated the process was legal and did not violate the ethical standards of the statute.
Patron Sheila Thackham strongly addressed the Board about her opinions pertaining to the actions of the Board.
Minutes, June 3, June 10, 2016
The Board reviewed the minutes of June 3, 2016 and June 10, 2016 for approval.
Director Gose made a statement to clarify the motion he made in the June 10th meeting. On page 2 of the minutes it stated, “ …re-interview Mr. Birdsall, face-to-face, and if he is not interested in coming, the position will go to Director Ellison.” Mr. Gose felt because Mr. Birdsall was interested in a face-to-face interview yet couldn’t make it to the scheduled time he should be given a different time to conclude the interview. Mr. Gose wanted that reflected and corrected in the minutes. Because the motion was recorded as stated, there was no change or corrections to be made.
Director Gose made a motion to approve the June minutes and Director Morrell seconded the motion. Motion approved.
|Voucher 01||Reimburse Revolving Fund||$143264.71|
The Board reviewed and discussed the June Vouchers. Director Sleater made a motion to approve the Vouchers as submitted and Director Morrell seconded the motion. Motion approved.
May Financial Statement
The Board reviewed and discussed the May financial statement.
Interim Manager Ellison reported he attended a meeting with the City of Richland and JUB concerning the construction of the Dupertail Bridge. The main topics of conversation were how the ditch riders will get through the construction area and what affect it will have on CID. Also discussed was what CID needs to have under the bridge for operation purposes. It has been determined the best choice is to construct a rectangular concrete flume or an open box culvert so CID would have access to clean it. The size of the culvert would accommodate 160 cfs. The next step is between CID and City of Richland.to determine what compensation the District needs for the easement the City wants from CID.
Ellison recommended the District go forward with the box culvert. Director Morrell made a motion to approve the box culvert, sized for the 160 cfs, for the Dupertail Bridge project. Director Sleater seconded the motion and it was approved.
Work Orders by Division
The Board reviewed and discussed the work orders in their respective divisions.
Interim Manager Ellison reported the Dam Safety office asked for more soil samples. Strata from Pullman, WA took the samples and used software to look at seismic issues pertaining to international building codes for seismic requirements. JUB submitted the packet of info last week and they expect to receive the construction permit from the Dam Safety Office within the next couple of weeks. They will finish up the bid document to be ready to submit it for bids.
Ellison stated there is a possible chance to get some money from the Bureau of Reclamation to help pay for the reservoir. Also there is a chance to obtain funds for flow management of the Elite Sod and the Columbia Park Spillways.
The new Backhoe was delivered a week ago.
Hailey Bowers, co-owner of parcel #0980-400-0010-000 requested an easement release for an ingress/egress easement at 209609 E Schuster Road in order to build a shop. Several years ago, CID quit claimed property to the property owners but kept an ingress/egress access easement. The ingress/egress easement is not needed by the District except for the back 50 feet for the LID #57 pump station.
Director Sleater made a motion to approve the release of the ingress/egress easement on the 209609 E Schuster Road property. Director Gose seconded the motion and it was approved.
Director Shawver stated he received a phone call from Mr. Birdsall informing him he would not be able to make the interview that was scheduled for today’s meeting because he had an important meeting for his current job. Shawver stated a decision needed to be made whether to reschedule or move on. Director Sleater asked if the Board had a problem with the way things were going. Director Gose replied he had no problems with Howard Ellison becoming the manager but felt he should get it fairly and Mr. Birdsall should get the chance to interview. Mr. Gose made a motion to bring Mr. Birsdall in on a different date.
Director Shawver stated he felt the hiring process has gone on long enough and felt Ellison was doing a good job but Shawver had a couple of negative concerns. The first one was Ellison’s favorable position on the contract that the former manager, Joel Teeley, submitted and was approved. The other concern is that he does not want to see a precedent set for a board member to be able to become the district manager. Mr. Gose’s motion died for lack of a second.
Ellison responded to Shawver’s comments. He stated Director Sleater made the decision to put a contract in place. Howard voted for it because even with a contract, the manager still has to perform the duties of the job or be terminated. The District did not terminate Teeley. By failing to show up to work as directed, he resigned.
Ellison also stated he became a board member when he was asked to fill a vacancy. He had not set out to become a manager because he was retired. He agreed to be the interim manager for the short term. He now wants to see the District move forward. He is involved in a few projects and would like to see them through.
Director Sleater made a motion to hire Ellison as the manager contingent upon him accepting the employment offer. Director Morrell seconded the motion. Directors Morrell, Shawver and Sleater voted yes and Director Gose voted no.
Director Morrell stated the vacant board position for Division #03 needs to be filled. Ellison discussed the RCW’s pertaining to filling a vacant position.
Director Shawver asked who would write up the employment agreement. Attorney Cowan stated the Board could submit him the offer letter and terms of employment. He would then put a letter together for Mr. Ellison to sign at the next meeting. Director Shawver asked to continue this meeting in two weeks, July 15th, 3:00 pm to discuss terms and set the wages.
Gary Weatherly, JUB Engineer, stated he has worked with a lot of district managers and felt Mr. Ellison would do a good job.
President Shawver recessed the meeting at 2:50 pm until July 15, 2016 at 3:00 pm.