February 1, 2021

County Commissioners Meeting Feb 1 Summary

The 3pm work session was about 20 minutes long for the public portion.  The primary focus of this session was for the commissioners to read letters from citizens who responded to the call for relocating the Confederate Monument.  Cecil Perry was not in favor of delaying the decision about where to relocate the statue he wanted to make the decision and move forward. A citizen from Four Forks Road who wrote one of the letters was present for the meeting. Sean Lavin raised objections on making the decision quickly since the letters had just come in Thursday. Sparty Hammett said it would be beneficial from a staff perspective to tie up the loose ends and straighten out the logistics of moving the statue.  He recommended putting this back on the February 15th agenda to be able to answer all questions and have everything solidified. A motion was made and approved to move the decision to the February 15th meeting.  The board entered a closed session for another 20 minutes and then adjourned the meeting.

The 4pm meeting was about 30 minutes long.  ECPPS interim superintendent Rhonda Davis made a presentation about the 0-5 year and 6-10 year budget plans for the Pasquotank-Elizabeth City Public Schools.  The schools are required to submit this information to dpi electronically, but the report is only able to be filed with the approval of the County Commissioners because it requires a signature.  Discussion was made regarding electronic door keys that will be installed in order to let the faculty and staff gain entry to the exterior doors of all public schools. Budget information was presented to the commissioners that included HVAC upgrades, painting, and asbestos removals from multiple schools.  David Smithson, our Water Superintendent has been retitled to Pasquotank Utilities Superintendent. Part of the Water and Sewer Master Plan also renames the Water Department to the Pasquotank Utilities Department.  Sean Lavin made a motion to move forward with the plans presented previously regarding the changes to the water department and their budget.  The commissioners voted to approve a $50k fee for the county to perform a water study.  Barry Overman asked to have the study made available to the Volunteer Fire Departments.  DebtBook cloud based software was proposed by Sparty Hammett in order to help the county allocate debt and generate reports, $7,250 is the initial cost with a $5k annual renewal.  Lloyd Griffin made a motion with Charles Jordan’s second to favor the software being purchased.  Discussion was made regarding countering a $100k offer for a Winfall property being sold by the county to $130K firm.  

The 6pm meeting began with a letter being read from the Pasquotank Republican Party with the nomination of Jonathan Meads to the vacant County Commissioners seat for the Southern Inside district.  Jonathan’s daughters recited the pledge of allegiance leading up to him being sworn into office.  A representative from the Shenandoah Battlefield Historic Foundation spoke in favor of theConfederate Statue being placed with others in their care.  Discussion was made regarding the traffic flow for Covid-19 vaccinations. Cecil Perry wanted to ensure bikes would be allowed for driving through for vaccinations due to the number of people in the community who only have bikes for transportation.  Charles Jordan said that 6500 people in Pasquotank County have been vaccinated so far.  Lloyd Griffin asked Jonathan to introduce his family at the end of the meeting.

To watch video excerpts from the meeting check our videos page.

Related article: Jonathan Meads Sworn In