Sep 28 Regular Monthly Meeting Minutes: August 19, 2020
Indian River County Hospital District
August 19, 2020
TRUSTEES: Marybeth Cunningham Michael Weiss
Ann Marie McCrystal Barbara Bodnar
Allen Jones Tracey Zudans
STAFF: Ann Marie Suriano Jennifer Frederick
Kate Voss Jennifer Peshke, Esq.
Convene Meeting – Marybeth Cunningham, Chairwoman
Mrs. Cunningham convened the Chairman’s meeting of the IRCHD Board of Trustees at 10:00 AM by welcoming those participating via Zoom. She provided an update concerning the number of COVID patients currently at the hospital. There are currently 13 patients being hospitalized, four of whom are in ICU. She further explained that Governor DeSantis’ has extended Executive Order 20-69, which allows the District to meet virtually without a physical quorum through October. This will include the District’s budget hearings which will take place on September 10th and 17th. She asked the Trustees to confirm that they are still in agreement with meeting via Zoom, which all voted in favor to continue that process. Lastly, she suggested that the Trustees hold their regular monthly meeting for September immediately after the final budget hearing which is scheduled to begin at 5:01 PM. The Trustees agreed to her recommendation.
Roberts Rules of Order Review- Jennifer Peshke, Esq.
Mrs. Peshke prepared a presentation of Roberts Rules of Order in accordance with the Districts board meetings. She reviewed specific items such as making amended motions or table motions, along with questions and voting procedures. Additionally, she reviewed protocol for abstaining from a vote. There was Trustee discussion and they thanked her for preparing this information
COVID-19 Special Funding Request- Action Required
Mrs. Suriano stated that the District received two special funding requests related to COVID-19, for the Trustees to review and consider. Representatives from those agencies were present at the meeting to discuss the same and answer any questions.
Mr. Bach from the VNA addressed the board and reviewed the special funding request from the VNA. The total amount of the request is $92,402.90, which will be reimbursement for PPE items already purchased by the VNA. This is a separate request from the $11,523.07 funding request for the mobile unit, that was approved back in June. Dr. Weiss asked if the VNA researched the cost of these items before they were purchased to find the best value, and Mr. Bach indicated they had. Mrs. Deigl asked if the VNA had received funding for PPE from the EOC. Ms. Orton stated that the VNA received funding from the EOC in March for PPE, but the items purchased have already been utilized and the funding has been spent. There was further Trustee discussion concerning the approval of this request and the fear that multiple other agencies would approach the District looking for COVID-19 related funding. The board agreed that they need to be mindful of these requests as these are unprecedented times, but must keep their fiduciary responsibility to the tax payer in mind. Mrs. Cunningham asked for a motion to approve which was made by Mr. Jones. Dr. Weiss seconded the motion, which passed unanimously. Mrs. Bodnar and Mrs. Zudans said that they would agree to approve this as a one-time request.
Mr. Webb addressed the board and stated that he was participating in today’s meeting on behalf of Ms. Angelia Perry, who was unable to attend. The Gifford Youth Achievement Center is requesting $5,699 for the purchase of 100 sneeze guard desk shields for the after-school program students. He explained that the desk shields add an extra layer of protection for students and teachers. The shields will be utilized along with other recommended CDC guidelines. There was Trustee discussion concerning the request and some Trustees felt that this request was outside the scope of District funding. Mr. Jones stated that he believes the District should support this request as the GYAC serves a more vulnerable population that is more likely to be affected by the virus. Mrs. Zudans stated that this request should be supported by philanthropic dollars or the county. Mrs. Suriano stated that all county support dollars through the CARES act have already been allocated, and that they are not funding requests for PPE. The United Way has also ceased funding requests for PPE as well. Mrs. McCrystal made the motion to approve the request, which was seconded by Mr. Jones. The motion carried 4-3, with Bodnar, Zudans, and Weiss in opposition.
Action Agenda Items & Agency Equipment Funding Request Policies- Michael Weiss, Vice Chair
Dr. Weiss stated that he would like the District to write and adopt a policy concerning funding requests made to the District for equipment which exceed $1,000 in value. The policy would require the requesting agency to conduct a competitive bidding process for the equipment being purchased and submit the same to the District for review. He does not feel the District should support the purchase of equipment without this policy in place moving forward. There was further Trustee discussion surrounding this recommendation. The other Trustees felt it was not in the District authority to dictate how agencies conduct their purchasing of equipment. They also believed that most agencies have their own bidding and purchasing policies in place regarding the same. It was recommended by Mrs. Suriano that the District add language to the District Funding Application which states that any agencies requesting funding for equipment must provide a copy or proof of their bidding policy when purchasing equipment. The Trustees agreed with this recommendation.
FY 20-21 Budget Discussion- Ann Marie Suriano, Executive Director
Mrs. Suriano stated that a few Trustees submitted additional comments and recommendations concerning the fiscal year 20-21 budget after the last budget discussion. She instructed Ms. Voss to prepare a memo outlining the same for the Trustees review and consideration. She further explained that the District will hold its tentative and final budget hearings next month on September 10th and 17th. Those meetings will take place via Zoom and begin at 5:01 PM. The public will have an opportunity to speak at both of those hearings. She stated that with the uncertainty due to COVID and the unknown of who this will affect in the community long term, she asked the Trustees to consider this when adopting the new budget. She also stated that the District taxable value has increased by $1 million and this does not constitute an increase in taxes, to the tax payer. The .8011 millage rate currently being proposed equals $160 expense to the taxpayer, for a median house value of $200,000.
Mr. Jones addressed the board and stated that he has worked with Mrs. Suriano on the proposed budget and has come to the following recommendation. If all agencies are funded at their full request and the Districts does not add additional reserves, the District could adopt the roll back rate of .7759. In doing this the District would still be able to support all funded agencies, while also providing a reduction in taxes to the residents.
Mrs. Zudans stated that she agrees with Mr. Jones comments and would like to adopt the roll back rate. She believes some requests included within the budget are mission creep from the District’s true mission and fall outside the District’s purview. She also addressed her concerns surrounding the requests from Tykes & Teens, Phoenix Rising, and We Care. The Board discussed that this would be the last year they would fund We Care at this level, unless they were given concrete data showing their impact on the community. They further agreed to remove the $9,000 for CPAP equipment that was originally budgeted for We Care. Mrs. Stuven from the We Care Foundation addressed the board and stated that over the next year, We Care will be working on updating its Strategic Plan and vision for future operations. She thanked the District for their support and is optimistic that they will be able to provide the information that the District is looking for moving forward. Additionaly, Mr. Barnaby from Phoenix Rising addressed the group and clarified some questions from Trustees regarding their funding request. Mrs. Soule of TCCH and Ms. Guzenski of MHA spoke highly of the work Mr. Barnaby does through Phoenix Rising and stated that his agency provides a desperately needed service in Indian River County. Lastly, he discussed the various accreditations they are in the process of obtaining which will require them to meet certain metrics and will be an additional way to track their progress and effectiveness within in the community. Mrs. Frederick stated that she has followed up with Trustees’ questions regarding Tykes and Teens and stated that she would provide further follow up if requested. Mrs. Zudans stated she would like a better explanation of the charges and that their request could be funded through the School District. Mrs. Frederick stated that she would put something together for the Trustees. The Trustees had further discussion surrounding the budget and Mrs. Bodnar and Mrs. Zudans were in agreement with Mr. Jones to adopt the rollback rate of .7759. Mrs. Cunningham, Mrs. Deigl, and Mrs. McCrystal felt that the District should maintain the current millage rate of .8011, which would allow the District to have additional reserves that may be needed for unforeseen expenses due to COVID-19. Dr. Weiss was disconnected from the call but had a subsequent discussion with Mrs. Suriano and he stated that he was in favor of keeping the millage at .8011.
There was no public comment. Mrs. McCrystal made the motion to adjourn which was seconded by Ms. Deigl. The meeting was adjourned at 12:00 PM