November 4, 2019
Members Present: Keith Squires, Cynthia Browning, Daniel Harvey, Tim Williams, and Matthew Bykowski
Also Present: Jack McDonough-GNAT-TV
The meeting was called to order at 7:05pm by Chairman, Keith Squires
Public Comments: None
Minutes of the Meeting of October 21, 2019: Mr. Williams made a motion to accept as presented, the minutes of the meeting of October 21, 2019. Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion passed.
Old Business: Christmas Tree Sales: The meeting started with the Board discussing the upcoming Christmas Tree Sales. Mr. Squires said the trees will be picked up from a tree farm in North Bennington, VT, on November 19, 2019. He also has assistance from a forestry class from Bennington. Mr. Squires said he thought the Board should have been involved with the pricing of the trees. They also discussed the possible use of trees from the Yellow Barn, as was discussed at the last meeting. Ms. Browning said Mr. Squires should use his judgement to determine if the trees can be cut and sold. Mr. Squires said he’s never used fertilizer on the Yellow Barn trees, and that it might help the smaller ones to grow better in the future. If there are trees that are able to be cut and sold from the Yellow Barn, the size and quality will determine the price of these trees, with Mr. Williams thinking $20 for these smaller trees would be a fair price. It was discussed that 80 trees have been ordered from the farm, and that it might be best to go back to selling them for $38 each as in the past to make sure they all sell. Mr. Williams says he sees the tree sales as a community service, and profit is secondary, so is willing to go back to selling them for $38.00
New Business: Zoning Bylaws: The Board discussed the new Zoning
Bylaws that they had all reviewed. Mr. Squires said he didn’t see a lot of
major changes, some wording is different, that helps to make it clearer. BCRC
has recommended revisions, following State guidelines. Ms. Browning noticed
that Chris Heins’ name was misspelled.
They also reviewed an email with additional changes that they received
from John Williams and Bill Henry. Ms.
Browning made a motion to approve the
Draft of the 2019 Arlington Land Use Bylaws, revised 8/7/2019, as corrected by the email from John Williams dated 10/21/19. Mr. Harvey seconded. Motion passed.
Fire Hydrants: Mr. Williams inquired about the progress of the fire hydrant project in East Arlington. Mr. Squires said they have all the needed materials, but he is not positive it can be completed before winter. He also spoke of the hydrant by the Rec Park, and the need to raise it up three feet because it sits in a hole and raising it will help raise the drain port above the water level, and prevent freezing issues. He said it should be finished this week.
Town Administrator Job Search Update: Mr. Bykowski said that there are five applicants that seem promising and will be prescreened by the Search Committee soon. He said Mr. Baker, the Chair of the Search Committee, has decided to pursue these five original applicants, but keep any newly submitted applications in case they need to expand the search. It was discussed that interviews are not open to the public due to confidentiality concerns.
HBH Agreement: Mr. Williams said he was approached about a past verbal agreement with HBH and the Town, about allowing the Town to store gravel on their property in exchange for plowing and sanding. Mr. Squires said that agreement is between 15-20 years old, and to his knowledge only includes summer road maintenance, and plowing to their gate.
Old Business, con’t: Technology Plan Update: At this point in the meeting the Board went back to “old business” to discuss the Town Hall Technology Plan. Mr. Bykowski said he spoke with April from E-Enable and she was working with NEMRC to begin the process of switching to NEMRC Cloud. He also looked into government licensing, but it costs more and that the Microsoft licensing should be done next week. Then they will work on updating the Town Clerk’s computer. He has asked April for a statement of costs to compare with figures he originally discussed at a past meeting.
Highways: Red Mountain Line Painting: Mr. Squires spoke with the Board about having the final bill for repairing Mr. Wilkins truck that was approved at a past meeting. Langway had quoted $2,478.56 for repairs from the Red Mountain incident, but that the actual bill was $1,464.00 because they were able to remove some paint and not have to replace all parts. There is one other person from Crow Hill Road who had called about his vehicle also being damaged, and Mr. Squires is waiting to hear from them, then he will contact the Line Painting company, and their insurance company to try to obtain reimbursement for these damages. If there is no acknowledgement from the company, the Town’s attorney may be contacted.
Ball Mountain Road: Mr. Squires asked the Board to sign the TA-65 form for reimbursement from the State for the Ball Mountain Road culvert project. The total cost is $154,314.00, and the Town is asking for a reimbursement of $136,158.84. Ms. Browning made a motion to complete the reimbursement form TA-65 for the Ball Mountain Culvert Project. Mr. Harvey seconded. Motion passed. The form and substantiating paperwork will be brought to District 1 in Bennington.
Red Mountain Road Trees: Mr. Squires spoke of there being more trees that need to come down on Red Mountain Road, and he will be getting bids for the job.
Road Salt: Mr. Squires spoke of the third company to provide a bid for salt for the winter. He said the use three vendors is to prevent a company from running out and not being able to provide enough to the Town for the whole season. He said he had a new bid from Morton Salt, for $69.90 per ton delivered. It is $5.60 per ton less than last year. Ms. Browning made a motion to enter into a contract with Morton Salt of Chicago, up to 400 tons of salt, for a price of $69.90 per ton delivered. Mr. Harvey seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Squires said the previous accepted bids were from Apalachee for $70.00 per ton, and Cargill for $79.50 per ton.
Street Signs: Ms. Browning said it appears the sign for Russell Street and Rt 7A is missing, and that is a 911 issue. Mr. Squires said he will check on the sign.
Leaf Blower: Ms. Browning said she heard that Sandgate and Rupert are sharing a giant leaf blower to clear ditches, and wondered if Arlington could benefit from one. Mr. Squires said he thinks that using them to clear ditches is still experimental at this time, but that the cost to purchase one is not too expensive.
Berwal Road Update: It was discussed that work on Berwal Road has been completed and reflectors put up recently as well.
Water Department: Pump House: Mr. Squires gave an update on the damage done at the Pump House in the last storm. He said parts have been replaced and electricians have been there to check the surge and fluctuation issues, and the conclusion is that the new transfer switch has phase protection built into it which should address this type of problem in the future. They are now working to find the reason the generator overheated and shut down. Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Warrant WD#23, from the Operating Account in the amount of $3808.56. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed.
Warrants and Orders: Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Warrant # R-6, Reappraisal Account, for $70.00 for postage. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Warrant # 23, in the amount of $68,820.94, from the General Operating Account, of which over $41,000.00 is for winter road sand. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Warrant #24, 2019 approved Appropriations from the March Town Meeting, for $99,9954.00, which does not include the $3000 Appropriation to the Community House that was paid July 18, 2019 due to a special request. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Payroll #45B, for Keith Squires for services as Interim Town Administrator, in the amount of $1,038.44. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Squires abstained.
Mr. Harvey made a motion to adjourn. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed. Meeting adjourned at 8:35PM
Janet Barry, Recording Secretary
Cc: files, Town Clerk