• Town of Weathersfield, Vermont

  • Town of Weathersfield, Vermont

  • Town of Weathersfield, Vermont

  • Town of Weathersfield, Vermont

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Select Board
Martin Memorial Hall
5259 Route 5, Ascutney VT
Monday, October 2, 2017
7:00 PM
REGULAR MEETING

MINUTES
APPROVED 11/6/2017

Select Board Members Present: Daniel Boyer
C. Peter Cole
Lynn Esty
Amy Beth Main
Kelly Murphy

Select Board Members Absent:

Ed Morris, Town Manager

Others Present:
Chief Daniels Edith Stillson Timothy LaRoche Tom Kennedy

1. Call to Order
Ms. Murphy called the meeting to order at 7:01PM.

2. Comments from Select Board and Town Manager
Mrs. Esty announced that the Weathersfield Directory is ready for distribution. Anyone who took out a business card ad will receive a hand-delivered copy this week.

Ms. Murphy acknowledged receipt of a thank you note from the American Red Cross for our taxpayer donation of $250 and another from the Vermont Center for Independent Living for their $185 donation.

a. Explanation of October 4th meeting packet and procedure
Ms. Murphy outlined some ground rules for the conduct of this special meeting. The full outline was emailed to appropriate parties.

Mr. Morris announced that the 2nd village revitalization workshop had been held with good attendance and good discussion. About half of the attendants were newcomers. The next workshop will be held on October 26th at 6:30 PM at the Bow Baptist Church.

3. Comments from Citizens on topics not on the agenda
There were no comments from citizens.

4. Review minutes from previous meetings – 9/18/2017
Additions/corrections/deletions:
a. Mrs. Esty asked to have the words “1st draft of” removed from this sentence: The 1st draft of the Weathersfield Directory will be ready for distribution at the Town Festival.”
Motion: To approve the minutes as amended
Made by: Mrs. Esty Second: Mr. Cole
Vote: Unanimous in favor

5. Wyndham Solid Waste District Payment – Tom Kennedy or Bob Forguites
Mr. Kennedy presented a check to the Board for $24,433 as a portion of the funds released from the dissolution of the solid waste district. The amounts returned to the towns were based on tonnage during the years the waste district was in operation. Mr. Kennedy read a resolution stating that the Board acknowledges receipt of the money and that this is a final payment. He asked the Board sign the resolution when the funds are accepted.

Motion: To authorize Mr. Morris and Ms. Murphy to sign the resolution on behalf of the Board.
Made by: Mrs. Esty Second: Mr. Cole
Vote: Unanimous in favor

Mr. Morris stated that these funds will be used to finance most of the purchase and installation of the new compactor at the transfer station.

6. Discuss the possibility of contracting police services (10:41)
Chief Daniels proposed reaching out to Reading, Baltimore and Cavendish to talk about providing police services to them and what that coverage might look like. He provided a list of pros and cons to be considered. He said he could not provide cost details until he was able to start the conversation with these towns.

Mr. Boyer said that Baltimore had once approached Weathersfield to inquire about our providing police services to them.

The Town currently has two full-time and four part-time officers who are on duty seven days a week. The schedules are adjusted as needed.

The State Senate is proposing a bill that would require all Vermont municipalities to provide their own police coverage. Vermont State Police have traditionally provided some level of coverage to those towns that lack a police force, but due to a variety of circumstances, they are pulling away from that tradition. Thus this appears to be a good time to approach other towns to offer assistance.

Mr. Kennedy said that the Town has been involved in providing regional police services previously when, about six years ago, the Town entered into a collaboration with State Police and the Windsor County Sheriff's Department to provide coverage to Cavendish, Hartland and Windsor. He said the State Police see an inequity in costs and would prefer to focus on support and major crimes and leave patrolling to the towns.

Chief Daniels said at this time he is only seeking authorization to approach other towns to start the conversation. He said this proposal will take time to develop properly and is not looking to approach the Board at budget time.

Motion: To allow the Town Manager and Police Chief to research the possibility of contracting police services to other towns.
Made by: Mr. Boyer Second: Mrs. Esty
Vote: Unanimous in favor

7. Fire consultant report discussion
The Board revisited Mr. Morris's matrix that was developed based on the Wood Report. Ms. Murphy asked for questions or comments from the Board.

Ms. Main asked if the tasks assigned to the Fire Commission in the matrix would be feasible given that its current membership is the two chiefs and Mrs. Esty. Mr. Morris said he thought this is where the Select Board should direct the Fire Commission to go, instead of doing what they have been doing for the past few years. He said he had spoken about this with the fire chiefs. He would like to see the Commission discuss (for example) what kind of equipment is truly needed by the Town as a whole as opposed to what equipment is desired on each side of Town. The Commission can handle the debate of who will purchase it and where it will be stored. A lot of the tasks assigned to the Commission in the matrix are of this type. He acknowledged the current membership of the Commission but said the Commission is still the best place for these discussions to take place.

Ms. Murphy asked Board members to individually go through the matrix recommendations and create a list of the top five safety and top five administrative recommendations and send that information to her. She will compile the information and see where everyone stands. Then the Board can create its own priority list.

Mr. Morris asked the Board members to revisit the Wood Report and comment on the summary and recommendations that he has provided. Some of the points are taken directly from the report, but others are based on Mr. Morris's opinions.

Ms. Murphy asked Mr. Morris to look into the status of the ISO report as she felt it would be helpful in setting priorities.

Mrs. Esty reminded the Board that each department is an independent 502(c)(3) and that the Board can make recommendations but cannot require either of them to do anything. This fact is understood and it is hoped that the departments will choose to collaborate anyway.

Ms. Murphy asked the Board members to have their priority lists back to her by October 12th so as to be able to discuss them at the October 16th meeting.

8. Golden Cross Ambulance/extend service contract
Motion: Approve extending the Golden Cross Ambulance contract until June 30, 2018.
Made by: Mr. Cole Second: Mrs. Esty

Mrs. Esty said the Golden Cross contract had been discussed previously by the Fire Commission. The contract has been the same for many years; there have been some concerns about response times as well as some personnel issues. The fire departments would like to talk with the Board when the contract is next discussed.

Mr. Morris said he had had an extensive conversation with Josh Dauphin about this issue. He asked the department to put together some statistics on response times and issues they are concerned about. It was agreed that extending the contract to June was a good idea as it gives them time to do “their homework”. Mr. Morris conveyed this to Golden Cross as well.

Ms. Main inquired about the process for bringing those concerns. Mr. Morris said they were brought to the Fire Commission and then to his attention. He said at this time he doesn't have any factual data to confirm the concerns. Ms. Main asked if the concerns should go to the Manager because the contract is through the town. Mrs. Esty said that was the understanding of the Fire Commission. Mr. Morris said he needs the factual data to better understand the concerns.

Vote on the motion: Ms. Murphy abstains; all others vote in favor

9. Award Martin Memorial Hall Painting Bid
At the last meeting the Board asked Mr. Morris to reach out to P & G to get an “apples to apples” cost estimate to compare with the Coughlin proposal. Mr. Morris sent Coughlin's work proposal (minus figures) to P & G and asked for their opinion. P & G thought Coughlin's proposal was “very extreme”, claiming that that kind of work did not need to be done. P & G submitted a second bid. He (P&G) said he would come in this fall (if awarded the bid) and cover all of the windowsills and some of the places around the bottom of the building that need protection for the winter. He would return in the spring and do a full scrape/prime/paint with two coats of paint over the whole building. His second bid was $3850 (compared to the Coughlin bid of $11,000). Mr. Morris recommended awarding the bid to P & G painting.

Motion: Award the painting bid to P & G Painting for $3,850
Made by: Mr. Boyer Second: Mrs. Esty
Mr. Morris said that P & G Painting had been recommended by Sherwin Williams. The Board asked Mr. Morris to put more details in the final contract (e.g. two coats of paint).
Vote: Unanimous in favor

10. Award Snow Plow and Body RFP
The Town received three bids for the body and plow for the new dump truck. Mr. Morris and Mr. Hazeltine opened the bids on September 28th. Mr. Hazeltine read the bids and recommended awarding the bid to HP Fairfield.

Motion: To award the snow plow and body bid to HP Fairfield in an amount not to exceed $60,000.
Made by: Mrs. Esty Second: Mr. Boyer
Vote: Unanimous in favor

11. Reservoir Road RFP discussion
Mr. Morris said it appears there will be a $106,000 surplus in the highway fund. He would like to apply those funds to repaving a portion of Reservoir Road. He put out an RFP for a shim and overlay for a 6500-ft section of the road and a second RFP for a 9500-ft section to be completed this fall. He received two bids in response:

6500 feet 9500 feet
Springfield Paving $67.75/ton $65.60/ton
Pike $58.20/ton $58.20/ton
Total (Based on Pike bid) $107,670.00 $154,230.00

Mr. Hazeltine believes he can find $25,000 in this year's budget to add to this if needed, plus there is $66,600 in the highway maintenance reserve fund. He recommended awarding the bid to Pike.

If this is postponed until spring, the cost may increase due to fluctuating oil prices. Mr. Morris said that $58.20 is a really good deal. Mr. Morris recommended doing the 9500 feet.

Ms. Murphy asked what happens with the other roads in town that are of concern to some people if this one project uses up the surplus and part of the reserve funds. Mr. Hazeltine said there is sufficient funding in the budget to address those concerns.
Motion: Award the bid to Pike
Made by: Mr. Cole Second: Mrs. Esty
Vote: Unanimous in favor

12. Discuss Recruitment Process for Highway Superintendent
The Board was very impressed by the brochure Mr. Morris had created. Mr. Morris said he thinks this format is a bit less intimidating that the legal job description. It provides information about the Town as well as some vital road statistics.

All inquiries are to be directed to Colleen Hammond to prevent potential candidates speaking to anyone who is participating in the screening/interviewing process. The recruitment timeline calls for selection by January 2018.

The hiring procedure outlined follows recommendations of other managers.

The job description is close to what the Board reviewed at the last meeting, although it does contain changes recommended by VLCT.

Motion: Approve the job description and brochure as presented
Made by: Mrs. Esty Second: Mr. Cole
Vote: Unanimous in favor

13. Approve Changes to Highway Superintendent
a. Approve Job Description
(See above)
b. Approve Recruitment Brochure
(See above)

14. Propose changing the job description of Town Accountant to Finance Director
a. Approve Job Description
Mr. Morris said he believes this position is the right thing for the Town. His recommended salary range is based on a similar position in Bellows Falls and VLCT data. $55,000 has been budgeted for this fiscal year.

The Board recommended changing the point of contact to Mrs. Cole instead of Ms. Hammond.

Motion: To approve the job description and recruitment brochure with a salary range of $50,000 - $65,000 with point of contact changed to Mrs. Cole instead of Ms. Hammond
Made by: Mr. Boyer Second: Mr. Cole
Vote: Unanimous in favor

b. Approve Recruitment Brochure
(See above)

15. Festival Review
The weather was rainy and cold, which put a dent in attendance. Perhaps next year a rain date should be provided. Only half of the vendors showed up in Perkinsville, one of whom would like to help put together next year's festival. Mr. Morris would like to see others take on more responsibility for planning and implementing the festival as he has limited time to devote to it. Perhaps the Parks and Recreation Commission might be appropriate.

Ms. Murphy said that the town maps that were provided to festival participants were very much liked by festival goers.

16. Appointments
There were no appointments.

17. Approve Warrants
(Several pages of the warrant were missing.)
Motion: To approve the warrants for October 2, 2017 as follow:

General Funds Operating Expenses $30,776.39
Payroll $14,615.62

Highway Fund Operating Expenses $19,027.78
Payroll $6.664.35

Solid Waste Management Fund
Operating Expenses $7,677.05
Payroll $1,464.19

Library Operating Expenses $3,322.05
Payroll $$1527.76

Grants Operating Expenses $999.75

Agency Monies Operating Expenses $0.00

Reserves $325.00

Grand Totals Operating Expenses $62,128.02
Payroll $24,271.92

Made by: Mr. Cole Second: Ms. Main

The Town is currently paying WWVFD bills. AVFD is paying their own and being reimbursed. All bills are charged to the fire appropriation for each department without any details or breakdown.

Vote on the motion: Mrs. Esty abstains; all others in favor

The library's sign was damaged by a car accident. Bob Holtorf repaired the sign at no charge. Mr. Cole asked Mr. Morris to write a letter of thanks to Mr. Holtorf.

The cost of the proposed hydrant on Pikes Peak is $8465 according to a letter received from Troy Dare. The Town received a $5000 grant toward the cost; $3465 will come from reserves. Available spare parts from the highway garage will contribute to the project which should lower the cost considerably.

18. Future Meeting Agenda Items
October 4th – 7PM – Martin Hall - down stairs – fire contract

19. Adjourn
Motion: To adjourn the meeting
Made by: Mr. Boyer Second: Mr. Cole
Vote: Unanimous in favor

The meeting adjourned at 8:33 PM.

Respectfully submitted,
deForest Bearse