March 25, 2019
Members Present: Keith Squires, Daniel Harvey, Tim Williams, Matthew Bykowski
Members Absent: Cynthia Browning
Also Present: Jason Wilborn-GNAT-TV, Maureen Harvey, Jessica Roberts, Gary Weller, Highway Foreman
The meeting was called to order at 7:02pm by Chairman Keith Squires
Minutes of Meeting of March 25, 2019
Mr. Harvey made a motion to accept as presented, the minutes of March 11, 2019. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion carried.
Public Comments: Maureen Harvey, Board Member of the Trustees of Public Funds, was at the meeting to discuss two applications for the Emmett Smith Fund. The Fund was established to help people who wish to enrich the community, primarily youth, and community members in need. Ms. Harvey explained that the applications should be reviewed by a committee of two Selectboard members and the Town Clerk. It was decided that the applications will be reviewed and Ms. Harvey will be contacted when they have reached a decision. It was also discussed that currently Ms. Harvey is the only person on the Board of Trustees of Public Funds, and there are two vacancies. Mr. Squires said that in the beginning of April the Selectboard will review all vacancies that need new members and will appoint qualified individuals that have an interest in serving the various positions.
Jessica Roberts was at the meeting to discuss different ways to get involved with Town government. When vacancies are reviewed, it was decided she would be contacted with information of open positons.
New Business: Borrowed Money: A request was given to the Board from the Treasurer to borrow $150,000 from the Grader Fund to pay the Town’s bills, to be paid back, with whatever interest was lost, when tax money is collected. Currently the Grader Fund has a balance of $160,508.85. Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve the Treasurer’s request to borrow $150,000.00 from the Grader Fund. Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion passed.
Health Stipend Request: Mr. Squires gave the Board members a letter from the Treasurer, requesting she receive a health insurance stipend in lieu of receiving health insurance coverage through the Town, which she would have to wait five years to qualify for, according to the Town’s Eligibility for Benefits pollicy. It was discussed that the new Administrative Assistant was given the stipend before a year of employment, so it also has to be offered to other new employees before a year of employment is completed. Mr. Harvey made a motion to authorize a stipend under Section 17 of the Eligibility of Benefits, of $4000.00 per year, to Tiffany Mays, Town Treasurer. Mr. Bykowksi seconded. Motion passed. It was also discussed that the Board will review the benefits policy and discuss it further at the next meeting before considering any other changes. Mr. Harvey made a motion to table discussion of any other benefit policies and discuss it at the next meeting after the Board has a chance to review the policies. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed.
Highways: Revised Highway Standards: Mr. Squires said he had hoped to discuss the Revised Highway Standards sent from the State, but the State has yet to finalize them as of this meeting.
Sunrise Lane: Mr. Squires spoke to the Board about the request from Sunrise Lane residents that the Town take over their private road. He said that in addition to the issues of any new road having to meet new revised highway standards in order to qualify for any state aid money in the future, there is also an issue with the road as it crosses over Watershed Lane, so that road would also have to be considered if the Town maintains Sunrise Lane. Mr. Squires asked the Board members to drive on those roads before the meeting of April 22, 2019, when Sunrise Lane residents will be at the meeting to discuss the issue with the Board.
Roads: Mr. Weller, Highway Foreman was at the meeting and it was discussed that this year was the worst the roads have ever been, with the winter weather issues. It is expected that the worst is over for the year, and that going forward the Town may do some ditches on Berwal Road to help alleviate some of the issues on that road. It was also discussed that a new highway truck will be coming soon, and an older model will possibly be sold. There will be two separate contracts, one for the vehicle and one for accessories on the truck.
Water Department: Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Warrant WD#7, from the Operating Account in the amount of $4899.19 . Ms. Williams seconded. Motion passed.
Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Water Department payroll, #3, in the amount of $5147.14. Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion passed.
Mr. Squires discussed with the Board, the South Road water line issues. There is a house that does not meet chlorine contact times as issued by the State. Otter Creek has designed a possible fix for the issue or there could be benefits of digging new wells on the road. It will be discussed further at the April 15, 2019 Water Department meeting.
Old Business: Tax Exempt Properties: There was a discussion at the last meeting about tax exempt properties in town. The Board received information packets of all the properties that are tax exempt. Mr. Williams feels that 2nd Chance Animal Shelter does not offer as much community service as other organizations. Mr. Bykowski said he feels they do offer community services, and that one tax exempt organization cannot be singled out from the others to be asked for any donations to the Town Fire and Rescue services. Mr. Squires pointed out that 2nd Chance is tax exempt in State statue.
Hazard Mitigation Plan: Michael Batcher had dropped off a draft of the Hazard Mitigation Plan for the Board to review. It was discussed that he will be at the April 8, 2019 meeting to see if the Board wishes to make any changes to this plan, before sending it to the State, and that it also has to be approved by FEMA.
Mr. Squires mentioned that there will be a public meeting discussing the RT 7A Sidewalk Project at 6PM, April 8, 2019, before the regular Selectboard Meeting.
Dog Park: Mr. Williams inquired about the status of the fencing job at the Dog Park, and Mr. Squires said he has been talking to businesses about doing the installation when the ground thaws.
Septic System Loans: Mr. Squires showed a letter he received to the Board, from the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources about a loan program that allows homeowners a low fixed rate loan to repair or replace failed septic and or drinking water systems as a way to protect the environment. Information can be found at: Onsite Loan Program Website, or phone 802-461-6051.
Warrants and Orders: Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve an invoice in the amount of $1247.10 to Mance Engineering; Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion carried. Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Warrant #19-1, Invoice #2, to BCRC for Road Erosion Inventory, in the amount of $4800.00, which completes the study. Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve General Warrant #7, in the amount of $43,400.00, which includes quarterly insurance payments and salt contract payments. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed.
Mr. Williams made a motion to adjourn. Mr. Harvey seconded. Motion passed, meeting adjourned at 8:40 PM.
Janet Barry, Recording Secretary
Meeting video taped
Cc: files, Town Clerk