June 29, 2020
Members Present: Dan Harvey, Matthew Bykowski, Cynthia Browning, Tim Williams,
Members Absent: Todd Wilkins
Also Present: Town Administrator- Nick Zaiac, Tony Ennis-Highway Foreman, Darren Marcy-Manchester Journal, Cat Bryars-BCRC, Emma Cotton-VT Digger, Ryan Albert, and Janet Barry, all via telephone.
The meeting was called to order at 7:02 by Mr. Harvey.
Public Comments: None
Minutes of the Meeting of Jun 15, 2020: Mr. Bykowski made a motion to accept as presented, the minutes of the meeting of June 15, 2020. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed.
Highways: Ball Mountain Project Update: Mr. Ennis informed the Board that the Ball Mountain Road project is complete and came in under the grant amount. Mr. Zaiac explained that with approximately $9000 left from the original grant, including labor match, there can be another stormwater project, which was what the original grant was to be used for, that can be done, possibly fixing erosion on Wilcox Road.
Tree Bids: Mr. Zaiac presented the Board with three bids for tree removal, two trees on Warm Brook Road, one tree on Red Mountain Road. – 1. Steve’s Supreme Trees-$2300.00 2. Trees, Inc., 1 Red Mtn-$1450.00, 2 Warm Brook Rd- $1525.00 for a total of $2975.00. 3. Ed Pike Tree Service- 1 Red Mtn- $1450.00, 2 Warm Brook-$$1525.00, for a total of $2410.00. Ms. Browning made a motion to award the bid to Steve’s Supreme Tree Service for $2300.00 for 2 trees on Warm Brook and 1 on Red Mtn. Rd. Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion passed.
Weed Eater: Mr. Ennis told the Board a Highway Dept. weed eater blew up and needs to be replaced. He found a Stihl at Brown’s for $431.00. Ms. Browning made a motion to allow Mr. Ennis to purchase a new weed eater, not to exceed $445.00. Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Ennis said the Highway projects are ahead of schedule at this point and the next priority will be moving a fire hydrant in East Arlington with the Water Department. Mr. Zaiac said he will be assisting in coordinating schedules with Highway, Water, and Rec Park. Mr. Williams said perhaps the Board should look into purchasing a used trailer to move the excavator and eliminate the need to pay a local company to move it to different projects, which has been done eight times already this year. A used trailer would be approximately $4000-$5000. Ms. Browning voiced her concerns about the possibility of residents having a difficult time paying taxes this year, and feels she is not ready to buy more equipment, after having just purchased a new mower. The Board agreed to keep track of the amount of money spent to move the excavator this year and look at the budget for next year.
Sandgate Road Paving Update: Mr. Harvey said he has been in touch with Peckham and the Sandgate Road Paving Project will be the end of August for the grinding of old road and paving in early September.
New Business: Treasurer’s Letter: The Board discussed a request from the Treasurer to borrow money for Town operating expenses from a Capital Reserve budget line, to be paid back with interest in November when property taxes are collected. After reviewing the accounts, it was decided that it would be borrowed from the Fire Truck line. Ms. Browning made a motion to approve borrowing $125,000 from the CRF Fire Truck account, to be paid back with interest. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed.
Internal Financial Controls Checklist for Municipalities: The Board reviewed the Internal Financial Controls Checklist for Municipalities submitted by the Treasurer, which is a self-assessment check list for Municipalities. Mr. Bykowski made a motion to authorize Chairman, Dan Harvey, to be able to sign the Internal Financial Controls Checklist. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed.
Cutleaf Maples Motel Letter: The Board reviewed and discussed a letter from McManus Law Office, concerning several trees located behind the motel that are leaning over the roof of the motel, that the motel operators feel is a danger to the motel and it’s occupants. The property and trees in question have been previously inspected, and they are not in the Town’s Right of Way, so the Town is not responsible for the tree removal.
At this point in the meeting, Mr. Harvey called to order the Public Hearing concerning the Town Plan Adoption.
Cat Bryars from BCRC spoke with Board, via telephone, about the adoption of the Town Plan. She said the Planning Commission worked on the Town Plan update, and the biggest changes were to have all energy chapter requirements met, and to include the new Hazard Mitigation Plan updates into the Plan, but it was mostly a basic update. BCRC will give their approval soon. She suggested that there be a more thorough update in a year or two, after all the 2020 Census information has been collected. There were no public comments about the Plan. Mr. Williams made a motion to adjourn the Public Hearing. Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion passed. Public Meeting adjourned at 7:46PM. Mr. Bykowski made a motion to approve revised Town Plan as presented. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed.
New Business, con’t: Land Sale: Mr. Zaiac spoke to the Board about the possibility of selling a piece of property, that is a legal trail, but not a legal road. Mr. Kyle Crofut has expressed an interest in purchasing Parcel #0007-1-10, at 0 Hawley Mountain Road, that was acquired by a Town tax sale in 2016 for $2029.77. With fees that the Town would have in relation to posting a legal ad, and staff time spent to process the transaction, the Board agreed to $2229.77 for the final price. It was discussed that the Town cannot profit from the sale, only recoup the money from the tax sale. Ms. Browning made a motion to approve sale of Parcel #0007-1-10, Book @103, page 259, on Hawley Mountain Road for $2229.77, with details to be handled by Town Administrator, Nick Zaiac. Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion passed.
ZBA Resignation: Mr. Bykowski made a motion to accept the resignation of Susan Jennings, from the Arlington ZBA, and to thank her for her service. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed.
Animal Control Report: The Board quickly reviewed the report from the Animal Control Officer, that they requested at the last meeting, to be submitted quarterly going forward.
Netting at Softball Field: Mr. Zaiac gave the Board the three quotes he obtained for new netting at the Softball Field. 1. Custom Netting for a 30’x260’net – $2233.60 plus $300 shipping. 2. Net World Sports for a 35’x260’ net – $2109.19, includes shipping. On Deck Sports for 30’x260’ net – $3880.00. It was discussed that Net World Sports was five feet taller than existing net and could cause additional cost to hang it correctly. Mr. Bykowski made a motion to authorize Mr. Zaiac to purchase the net from Custom Netting for $2233.60 plus $300.00 shipping, plus the necessary attachments to hang the netting. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed. It was also discussed that all park use requests must go through the Select Board office and that a Certificate of Insurance must be provided, which has not yet been submitted by Jason Green, as had been requested when he spoke before the Board at a previous meeting about having leagues begin to practice at the field.
New State Flag: Mr. Williams spoke of the possibility of getting two new State Flags, Mr. Zaiac said he would take care of ordering them. Mr. Williams also told the Board that Mr. Codere, of Domain Doors, has completed his work at the Park, the Yellow Barn and the new Town Administrator office, which have cost about $8000 in labor and materials, with the Yellow Barn money coming from it’s own Capital Reserve Fund. It was discussed that the energy and interior items that had been discussed to be repaired before, could be put in next year’s budget as they are not urgent, but the back roof does need to be extended for safety issues, and Mr. Codere would be asked to fit it into his schedule for possibly September. Mr. Williams also said he’d like to see Quarterly Reports supplied from the Rescue Squad, and perhaps a meet and greet with Mr. Josh Williams from the Rescue Squad. It was decided he would be invited to a meeting, along with Fire Department members, at future meetings.
Sheriff’s Contract: The Board discussed the Sheriff’s Contract, that had been revised, and negotiated by Mr. Bykowski and Mr. Zaiac. Each Board member spoke of their thoughts on keeping the Sheriff’s Department versus eliminating the contract and using the State Police. Mr. Bykowski said for the same amount of time, the State Police did five times the amount of calls that the Sheriff’s Department did, for no cost to the Town. Mr. Williams said he does not want to compromise public safety. Ms. Browning said she feels that having the Sheriff’s Department present and circling through Town seems valuable and she’s not convinced the State Police could provide that same level of enforcement when they are pulled to many different locations. She was willing to consider 15 hours instead of the current contract’s 20 hours, but not willing to stop having the Sheriff’s patrol. Mr. Harvey said the Town can use both and maintain their relationship with the Sheriff’s Department. The new contract gives the Town more control and flexibility, and they can change the number of hours of patrols with 15 days written notice and would also include patrol reports with each invoice, and in person quarterly reporting. The cost would remain $45 per hour. The updated contract can be cancelled with 15 days written notice. It will also include that all deputies should be trained to a Level 3, minimum. After much discussion, the Board agreed they feel better about the newly negotiated contract Ms. Browning made a motion to approve the new Sheriff’s Contract, for 7/1/20-6/30/21, as negotiated on 6/23/20. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed. At the next meeting, the hours and priorities of the contract will be set.
Mr. Bykowski informed the Board that based on Mr. Zaiac’s report, he has obtained all relative information from Interim Town Administrator, Keith Squires, and is in a good position to move forward and not need Mr. Squires’ services, and that Mr. Squires keys would be obtained.
It was also discussed that it is security, best practice, to have Town Hall and the garage’s locks changed and new keys made, as they have not been changed in many years and most keys do not work with ease. Mr. Zaiac was asked to get quotes from locksmiths.
Water Department: Ms. Browning made a motion to authorize WD Warrant #13, dated 6/26/20, for $1961.93, for regular expenses including phone and truck inspection. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed.
Warrants and Orders: Ms. Browning made a motion to approve General Warrant #14, in the amount of $9,358.05, $93.70 on page one and $9,264.35 on page two. Mr. Bykowski seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Bykowski made a motion to approve Warrant #App 13, for $3000, for early Appropriation distribution to the Arlington Community Club House. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Bykowski made a motion to approve Warrant # CRF-6, in the amount of $1,120.00, to Domain Doors for Yellow Barn repairs. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed. Mr. Bykowski made a motion to approve Warrant # CRF-7, in the amount of $37.00, to 8×8, for the Lister’s new phones. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed.
Ms. Browning made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed. Meeting adjourned at 9:36PM.
Janet Barry, Recording Secretary
Cc: files, Town Clerk