Documented by Josef Sibala
Here’s what you need to know:
- The Kings County Board of Supervisors approved a Tulare Lake water analysis agreement with Dellavalle Laboratory through June 30, 2026. Nicholas Montoya from the Public Health Department said the service agreement includes accurate and standard methodical water sample collection, transportation, analysis and reporting.
- The board held a public hearing and adopted a resolution to reduce the Williamson Act and Farmland Security Zone contract terms by 10%. The reduction will allow the county to recapture some foregone property tax while allowing approximately 2,000 landowners to keep 90% of their reduced tax benefits, according to the agenda packet.
- The board approved an agreement with Gary V. Bufkin Computer Consulting and Associates for a fire permit and record management software system. Fire Chief Bill Lynch mentioned that the requested fire permit software program is identical to the existing system used by the Community Development Agency.
- The board adopted a resolution authorizing an inter-fund loan between the county’s general fund and the county’s Fleet Fund to purchase a 2023 Vermeer CTX100 Skid Loader and a 2023 Vermeer BC1500 Brush Chipper through Sourcewell.
- How will the county address flooding?
- How will the construction agreement with Harris Development Corp. benefit residents?
According to its website, Kings County is a “general law” county, meaning the state constitution and general law determine the county’s governmental structure.
The Board of Supervisors is the governing body for Kings County and many county special districts. Each of the board’s five members is elected in a nonpartisan manner to a four-year term. The board sets policies and depends on the county administrator, county officials and department heads to fulfill its wishes.
The Board of Supervisors has administrative, legislative and quasi-judicial duties and responsibilities prescribed by the state constitution and statutes.
The meeting was held at 9 a.m. in the board chambers at 1400 West Lacey Blvd. in Administration Building No. 1 in Hanford.
Kings County County Board of Supervisors members present:
- Joe Neves, District 1 (Lemoore and Stratford)
- Rusty Robinson, District 4 (Armona and Hanford)
- Richard Fagundes, District 5 (Hanford and Burris Park)
- Doug Verboon, District 3 (North Hanford, Island District and North Lemoore)
Kings County County Board of Supervisors members not present:
- Richard Valle, District 2 (Avenal, Corcoran, Home Garden and Kettleman City)
- Human Resources Director Carolyn Leist
- District Attorney Sarah Hacker
- Personnel Analyst Danyele Leap
- Nicholas Montoya from the Public Health Department
- Deputy Veterans Service Officer for Kings County Scott Holwell
- Parks and Grounds Superintendent Natalie Brinson
- Public Works Director Dominic Tyburski
- Chief Engineer Mitchel Cabrera
- Deputy County Administrative Officer Megan Vega
- Planner Noelle Tomlinson
Holwell reminded everyone about Veterans Day events at the Hanford Cemetery and Civic Park in Hanford on Saturday.
A. The board (4-0) approved the Oct. 31 meeting minutes.
The board (4-0) approved the consent calendar items below.
A. Behavioral Health Department:
1. The board authorized the exemption from normal vehicle identification for vehicle #54808.
According to the agenda packet, KCBH was awarded grant funding from the California Health Facilities Financing Authority (CHFFA) to develop a community-based mobile crisis support team to focus on children and youth.
Related agreements for this award were presented to the Board on Sept. 20, 2022, and most recently, June 27, 2023. KCBH is passing this funding to a provider to execute the program on behalf of the county.
Part of the project includes acquiring a vehicle, which is required to be owned by the county. During program response, the provider will respond to mobile crisis incidents within the community.
B. Public Health Department:
1. a. The board allocated one full-time business application specialist position.
According to agenda packet information, the budget transfer is requested to account for the new grant-funded position for $104,319.
The Business Application Specialist (BAS) will be responsible for managing multiple information systems and maintaining software required for KCDPH to operate and better serve the residents of Kings County.
Several pending projects and assignments may be subcontracted due to insufficient full-time equivalents in the BAS role. Furthermore, the BAS will be tasked with developing and maintaining dashboards to improve communication with the public regarding infectious diseases.
Additionally, the BAS will improve processes to streamline data collection, input and output required for local, state and federal reporting.
Finally, the additional position will ensure a seamless transition if the department’s current BAS decides to leave, which would create a significant hardship for the department.
C. Public Works Department:
1. The board approved the notice of completion for the Motor Pool Fuel System Upgrades project to inform interested parties that the work has been completed.
According to the agenda packet report, two proposals from specialized contractors were submitted and evaluated based on their understanding of the work and the contractor’s past performance.
Based on the above-mentioned criteria, KC Partners Corp., Dba B&T Service Station Contractors, was selected as the winning bidder.
The project consisted of replacing and installing new fuel dispensers, under-containment units and all applicable hardware for fuel dispensers to function properly. The total for the project, including any change orders, was $137,239.
The project has been completed, and a notice of completion (NOC) is necessary to notify interested parties.
D. Sheriff’s Office:
1. a. The board authorized the Sheriff’s Office to purchase a Communications System Analyzer for the Kings County Sheriff’s Office Dispatch Center
According to the agenda packet report the cost of the Communications System Analyzer, at most $36,000, will be paid from the Sheriff’s Communication budget.
The Kings County Dispatch Center has four Spectrum Analyzers. Two analyzers were purchased in 1985, and two were purchased in 1996.
Both monitors purchased in 1985 have failed and are not repairable. One of the newer monitors, purchased in 1996, has recently failed, and it was discovered that the random-access memory (RAM) board and the microprocessor need to be repaired.
The Communications System Analyzers are essential to the dispatch center’s ability to ensure proper operation of county radio equipment.
The dispatch center is now working with a single monitor purchased in 1996. The analyzers maintain the Kings County communication infrastructure and ensure reliable and clear communication.
2. The board authorized the purchase of a Conex box and cement slab for storage at the Kings County Coroner’s Office.
According to agenda packet materials, the cost will be at most $30,000, paid from American Rescue Plan Act funds previously approved by the board.
On Sept. 20, the board approved the funding for the Conex box from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) fund. The box is needed for the Coroner’s Office to store equipment, files and items for the Public Administrator’s Office.
The Coroner/Public Administrator’s Office must store many items, and the storage must be secure. The Conex box will be placed on a concrete slab outside the Coroner’s Office.
1. The board denied the claim for damages filed by the estate of Jagtar Singh.
According to the agenda packet, on July 25, 2022, the Estate of Jagtar Singh filed a claim for damages, alleging a wrongful death caused by dangerous road design and lack of proper signage.
After investigation of the claim, it was determined that there is no liability against the county, according to county staff. Under Government Code section 912.6, staff recommended the board find that the claim is without merit and deny the claim.
The regular agenda is as follows:
A. District Attorney’s Office
1. The board (4-0) authorized the District Attorney’s Office to apply for the National Victims’ Rights Week Community Awareness Projects Funding Opportunity for funding assistance for Victims Rights Week from April 27, 2024, through May 3, 2024.
According to the agenda packet information, the requested amount is $5,000, which will be reflected in the proposed budget for the fiscal year 2024-2025.
Hacker said the district attorney’s office annually holds a Memorial Quilt Ceremony during National Victims’ Rights Week. This funding would contribute to that ceremony and assist in publication and advertising.
Over the past 15 years, the NCVRW Community Awareness Project’s program has supported over 1,000 community projects to raise public awareness about victims’ rights and services, such as Victims’ Memorial Quilt events, candlelight vigils and public awareness campaigns.
Within many of these communities, “traditional” NCVRW events were enhanced by the collaborative partnerships formed during each project’s planning phase.
This funding would increase public awareness of the Annual Memorial Quilt and extend the event to include a candlelight vigil.
2. a. The board (4-0) authorized the district attorney to sign and submit the California Office of Emergency Services’ Elder Abuse Program grant application for the performance period of Jan. 1-Dec. 31, 2024.
b. The board (4-0) approved the operational agreements with the California Highway Patrol, Lemoore Police Department, Kings County Sheriff’s Office, Kings County Probation Department, Kings View Behavioral Health Systems, Kings Community Action Organization, Kings County Commission on Aging, Kings County Human Services Agency, Hanford Police Department and Avenal Police Department for participation in the California Office of Emergency Services’ Elder Abuse Program Jan. 1-Dec. 31, 2024;
c. The board (4-0) authorized the district attorney to sign the operational agreements with the California Highway Patrol, Lemoore Police Department, Kings County Sheriff’s Office, Kings County Probation Department, Kings View Behavioral Health Systems, Kings Community Action Organization, Kings County Commission on Aging, Kings County Human Services Agency, Hanford Police Department and Avenal Police Department for participation in the California Office of Emergency Services’ Elder Abuse Program Jan. 1-Dec. 31.
d. The board (4-0) approved the Grant Subaward Certificate of Assurance of Compliance for the California Office of Emergency Services’ Elder Abuse Program.
According to agenda packet information, the requested amount of $100,410 is reflected in the proposed fiscal year 2024-2025 budget.
Hacker added that the grant requires a cash and in-kind match equal to 20% of the total project cost. Applicants may request a partial or full match waiver. The district attorney’s office is submitting a full match waiver with the application.
The Elder Abuse program is a new grant program to the county, and this will be the first request for proposal. This program will establish a specialized elder abuse advocate in Kings County. No additional FTE position would be required.
A current advocate within the office would cover this position. The advocate would provide court updates, explain their Marsy’s Law rights and assist with compensation applications through the State’s California Victim Compensation Board, specifically to victims over age 65.
One specialized advocate within the district attorney’s office handles the case from beginning to end. The grant program will be administered through several operational agreements.
The operational agreements are between the local law enforcement agencies, Kings Community Action Organization, Health and Human Services Adult Protective Services and the Kings County Commission on Aging.
The granting agency requires the agreements and provides overall services to the victims that each agency can provide.
B. Fire Department
1. The board (4-0) approved the agreement with Gary V. Bufkin Computer Consulting and Associates for a fire permit and record management software system.
According to the agenda packet report, the project’s cost will be at most $50,000, and will be expensed from the Fire Fund.
Lynch mentioned that the requested fire permit software program is identical to the existing system used by the Community Development Agency.
The Fire Prevention Division sought an electronic method to assign and store permit information. After speaking with the Community Development Agency, they informed the Fire Prevention Division that they were extremely pleased with the software’s ease of use and capability. Its specialized development allows for cross-department inquiries into permit and project status.
The cost of approximately $50,000 is significantly lower than many other types of available programs. The vendor and developer are in Fresno, and are readily available for support and training.
Therefore, the county purchasing manager has approved the sole source of the purchase of the fire permit software from Gary V. Bufkin Computer Consulting and Associates.
C. Human Resources
1. The board (4-0) approved the revised Chapter 6 of the Personnel Rules for the Education Reimbursement Program.
According to the agenda packet report, $50,000 will be allocated for this year and the following two fiscal years (totaling $150,000) using the county’s American Rescue Plan Act allocation.
The Education Reimbursement Program has been in place since 1988. The available amount is allocated to the Human Resources Department budget and is determined during each year’s budget approval process.
Personnel Analyst Danyele Leap said the policy includes various reimbursement levels for community college work, work associated with attaining a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree, certain Peace Officer Standards Training (POST) Academy expenses and reimbursements for fire officer and chief officer training certificate courses.
This update includes increasing the reimbursable amount for individuals pursuing a bachelor’s degree or higher education from $1,000 to $1,500 per fiscal year, reimbursing the cost of those who have passed the California Bar examination and permitting the reimbursements to those who are still on their initial probationary period so long as they are in good standing.
Additionally, other clarifying language was added to clarify eligibility requirements and to ensure more efficient processing of reimbursement claims.
D. Human Services Agency
1. The board (4-0) adopted a resolution proclaiming November National Adoption Month in Kings County.
E. Public Health Department
1. The board (4-0) approved an agreement with Dellavalle Laboratory for water analysis services effective upon execution through June 30, 2026,
According to the agenda packet report, funding to be at most $268,697 for the recommended action is included in the fiscal year 2023-24 adopted county budget.
Nicholas Montoya from the Public Health Department said that the service agreement with DL includes accurate and standard methodical water sample collection, transportation, analysis and reporting.
Sample collections will take place monthly at six approved sites unless requested at a different duration by KCDPH. In addition, KCDPH negotiated the ability to itemize services to better meet evolving needs.
The term of the agreement will start upon execution through June 30, 2026, provided adequate funding is available and contracted services continue to meet established benchmarks as well as the needs of Kings County and the expectations of KCDPH.
Montoya added buffer and a-la-carte options in the contract negotiation, reducing costs.
F. Public Works Department
1. The board (4-0) dedicated Serenity Garden to all Kings County employees as a space for mental health awareness, reflection and respite from daily personal or occupational stressors.
According to the agenda packet report, the Parks and Grounds Division designed and installed the garden in-house.
Parks and Grounds Superintendent Natalie Brinson added that the park division’s budget purchased the fountain, plants and tables. All other materials were already on hand and had no associated cost.
2. a. The board (4-0) adopted a resolution authorizing an inter-fund loan between the county’s general fund and the county’s Fleet Fund to purchase a 2023 Vermeer CTX100 Skid Loader and a 2023 Vermeer BC1500 Brush Chipper through Sourcewell.
According to the agenda packet, the total cost of the equipment is estimated to be $172,161.
The Parks Division has equipment that must be updated to meet San Joaquin Air Pollution Control District requirements. The purchases will allow the grounds to be maintained with better equipment and keep the county compliant.
Public Works Director Dominic Tyburski stated that the funding will be provided at the Kings County Treasury Pool rate under the provisions of federal law as contained in Title 2 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Section 225, under the following provisions:
1. The loan will be recorded as an account receivable in the ISF’s financial records.
2. The loan will be repaid with interest from the general fund and the interest shall be computed at the Kings County Treasury Pool rate in effect on June 30 of the preceding fiscal year.
3. The period of the loan is 36 months, and will be paid in three annual installments.
4. The loan will not adversely affect the ISF’s current cash requirements.
5. The ISF may demand accelerated repayment of all or any part of the loan if its cash requirements dictate.
6. The general fund may repay the loan sooner without any penalties.
3. The board (4-0) approved the construction agreement with Harris Development Corp., doing business as HBC Enterprises.
According to the agenda packet, on June 27, the Board of Supervisors approved the Plans and Specifications for the Highway Safety Improvement Program Systemic Flashing Beacons project.
The lowest responsive, responsible bidder was determined to be Harris Development Corp.. The low bid amount was $137,826.
Cabrera added that the project will consist of installing flashing beacons on Stop Signs and Advance Warning Signs at several intersections within the county. Construction was to start Nov. 7, and will terminate upon completion.
The project will use funding secured from the Highway Safety Improvement Program at a reimbursement rate of 100%.
1. a. The board (4-0) approved the agreement with Shani Jenkins to replace Marianne Gilbert’s Contract Administration and Felony Indigent Defense Contract retroactively, effective from Oct.16, 2023, through June 30, 2024.
b. The board (4-0) approved the agreement with Jamil Nushwat to retroactively replace Shani Jenkin’s Felony Indigent Defense Contract, effective from Oct. 16, 2023, through June 30, 2024.
According to the agenda packet, the Board of Supervisors approved the 26 fiscal year 2023-24 agreements for indigent defense on June 27.
Due to the appointment of the contracted administrator and felony contracted attorney, Marianne Gilbert, as a judge, the staff proposes reorganizing two current contracted attorneys with the following agreements to continue services for indigent defense for the remainder of the fiscal year.
There is no contract increase, only changing positions from what was currently budgeted. The total amount of the two agreements is $186,637. Expenses are included in the adopted budget for fiscal year 2023-24.
This reorganization of contract attorneys will result in a vacancy for a Conflict Indigent Defense agreement to be filled later.
Deputy County Administrative Officer Megan Vega stated that the agreement is for 8½ months beginning retroactively on Oct 16, 2023. The agreements are retroactive due to the appointment timing and transition of Marianne Gilbert to judge.
2. a. The board (4-0) appointed Robinson as the primary director of the California State Association of Counties Board of Directors
b. The board (4-0) appointed Verboon as alternate director to the California State Association of Counties Board of Directors.
The public hearing includes:
A. Community Development Agency
1. a. The board conducted a public hearing to implement modifications to the California Land Conservation Williamson Act Program.
b. The board (4-0) adopted a resolution to implement Government Code Section 51244(b) to reduce the Williamson Act and Farmland Security Zone contract terms by 10%.
c. The board (4-0) found that reducing the Williamson Act and Farmland Security Zone contract terms by 10% is exempt from review under the California Environmental Quality Act.
According to the agenda packet, implementing Section 51244(b) will allow the county to recapture a portion of foregone property tax revenue by decreasing land conservation contract terms by 10% while allowing landowners to retain 90% of their reduced tax benefits.
Planner Noelle Tomlinson said that in addition to staff time, the cost of implementing Section 51244(b) would include spending approximately $2,000 for the two notices required to be sent to the approximately 2,000 landowners subject to this process.
In response to a question from Robinson,Tomlinson clarified that the Farmland Security Zone is a 20-year contract and is restrictive.
Closed session includes:
- Conference with Real Property Negotiator: [Govt. Code Section 54956.8]
Property: 1426 South Drive, Hanford, CA 93230
Agency Negotiator: Kyria Martinez Negotiation Parties: Lacey Campus Partners, II LLP Under Negotiation: Price and Terms of Payment
- Conference with Labor Negotiator: [Govt. Code Section 54957.6]
Negotiators: Kyria Martinez, Sarah Poots
General Unit – CLOCEA
Supervisor’s Unit – CLOCEA
Blue Collar — SEIU
Detention Deputy’s Association
Deputy Sheriff’s Association
Probation Officer’s Association
The next board meeting will be on Nov. 21
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