Legislative Committee Meeting Minutes
12 August 2021
Committee Members in attendance: Stoney Jackson, Chairperson, Duane Jones, Vice Chairperson, Joyce Woodard, Mike Cesarini, Tommy Pollard, Larry Worsham, Judy Pruett, Other Commissioners: Erin Curry, Roger Reedy, Tracy Wilburn, David Adams, David Wamble, Gayle Jones, Terry Harwell, Joseph Sutton, Rodney Journey, Tim Risner, Harold Brooks, and Brad Butler, Rose Brown, Bill Cary Other: Melissa Greene – County Executive, Nancy Griffin, Deputy Financial Management; Public: Bill Young,
Chairman Stoney Jackson opened the meeting. Minutes from the previous meeting were moved for approval by Joyce Woodard, seconded by Larry Worsham. Motion approved.
First Agenda Item – Rules of the Court (for non-profits)
Stoney handed out The Tenn. Code Annotated 5-9-109 with 5 denoting counties, 9 denoting Appropriation and Disbursement of Funds and Part 1 denoting Authorized Appropriations Generally. While this is a state law, some of the information may be lacking for the purposes of Giles funding nonprofit charitable organizations and/or nonprofit civic organizations. For example, date for application may be spelled out in another document such as the Financial Management Act. Also some concern was expressed that Giles may not have strictly followed this TN Code, but the intent of this committee meeting was to determine what needed to be added to county policy and to ensure the county is meeting the TN Code law. In keeping with that, Stoney had developed with Beth Sumners-Moore Director of Financial Management a bullet check list to consider, a copy of which was also handed out.
Prior to discussing that list, some discussion points were made as follow:
Have a summary page as part of the requirement. Put applications into a box – deadline past, remove box. As a minimum reject all not complete or not turned in on time. Seven people on Budget Committee made rules and 21 commissioners so didn’t all consider those binding. Make change to committee rules have to be overturned by 2/3 votes from full commission. Rather than doing by hard copy, do a PDF file and send by email or thumb drive. Code gives guidelines, put that in county guidelines and put in a date, publicize. Motion by Joyce and seconded by Mike to always put in newspaper and on website. Stoney asked that motion be put on hold and Joyce and Mike agreed.
More discussion: Don’t agree in placing an ad, many don’t read paper; Previous date has been 15 April tax day. Don’t agree to spend money to give away money. Onus on nonprofit. Date is specified in the Financial Act of 81 have to be done on that date (later explanation – not shown in Financial Act but is based on when budget is due and backed up from that date. For instance to have time to review, public hearing, time to publish in paper, time to meet and vote.). Doesn’t have to be on that date. For approximately 22 years we have broken the rules. Stoney would like to get something in our rules by September. In fiscal year 2022 due date is on a holiday so what happens then. Stick to our rules. Melissa the TN code is a state law and if submittal doesn’t include financial information, we break the law by considering. Gayle Jones had mentioned Budget Committee of seven couldn’t make rules for all 21 Commissioners – then have to get rules approved at full commission. Some requests were turned in after the Budget process so there were no rules for them. Rules should be for before and after the process. Gayle asked what happens if a charitable does not turn in financial information, do auditors catch? Probably not.
Discussion on appropriation for UT-Southern and Melissa said in a written agreement, she had marked the only use can be for scholarships.
Back to the TN Code, Judy said a broad code since all show some use of the funds to promote the general welfare of the residents of the county. Some general discussion about what constitutes a nonprofit charitable organization since some organizations have only volunteers, some are treated differently in that they are systematically included every year, some are needed (fire and rescue) or have a Maintenance of Effort (Libraries). Suggested need the lawyer to clarify. Should show fund raisers so as not to be totally dependent on county funds. Again publish in paper an ad stating some of the requirements. Another motion by Mike to put notice on website and newspaper 30 days before due date. Joyce seconded. Motion changed to 60 days. More discussion on put in community briefs (no cost). Per David Wamble, can’t ask paper to take cost we’re not willing to take. Motion failed.
Another motion by Tommy and seconded by Duane that the due date be placed only on the website. Asked to include Summary Sheet in motion and was done. Motion approved 4-3 with Joyce, Mike and Judy voting no.
Suggested place TN Code on website, in total. Disagreed and said place reference only. Joyce recommended all look at website application information to decide what to keep, cut or amend and Stoney suggested Nancy email a copy to everyone.
Motion by Tommy Pollard, seconded by Mike Cesarini to adjourn. Motion approved.