MINUTES: June 3, 2014

Board members present: Steve Hawley, Joe Dicton, Don Chioffi and Mary Ashcroft

The meeting opened at 6:41 P.M. with the pledge of allegiance.

Mr. Hawley asked all in attendance to stand for a moment of silence in memory of long time town resident Mr. Clifford “Kip” Young, who recently passed away. All stood in silence.

The Board reviewed the May 5, 2014 minutes. Ms. Ashcroft moved to approve the minutes as printed. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

The Board took questions from the floor.

Town resident Ms. Beverly Miller met with the Board and presented photos showing the extent of storm water damage her Cold River Road property recently received from a neighboring property.

Ms. Miller told the Board that the storm water runoff came from a home site that is under construction.

Ms. Miller told the Board she has been in contact with the State of Vermont and that she is not satisfied with the assistance she has received. Board members encourage Ms. Miller to contact her insurance company regarding damage to her property.

Ms. Ashcroft encouraged Ms. Miller to continue to work with state officials to address her problem. Town Administrator Mr. Joseph Zingale Jr. cited the fact that the Town may have to get involved due to the Town's MS4 permit conditions regarding regulating disturbances one acre or greater. Town Road Commissioner Mr. Byron Hathaway said the Board should report the storm water discharge into Muzzy Brook to State officials.

Mr. Jim Donavan, of Broadreach Consulting, met with the Board and gave a final presentation regarding getting better walking and biking facilities between the Town Elementary School and Northwood Park. Mr. Donavan presented a map which showed all of the various options.

Mr. Donavan cited the various route locations which had been evaluated during the study. He said based on the information from the Steering Committee and the Public meetings a route was selected.

Mr. Donavan passed out copies of the final report. He apologized to Board members for not getting to them sooner. He said the sidewalk on Post Road would be extended from the school to Chasanna Drive and that Chasanna Drive would be widened by two feet to the corner of Sanborn Place.

He said from Sanborn place there would be a short shared use path of about six to 10 feet wide, which would wrap around the last property and into the existing trails in Northwood Park. He said the path would end at the gravel parking lot at the west end of the drive that comes into the recreation field.

He said the route was selected because it also provides a means for children in the neighborhood to walk to school. Mr. Donavan said only very minimal rights-of-way need to be obtained by the Town. Mr. Donavan told the Board that building the section of walkway in front of the school should be put off until it is decided what will be done to accommodate stacking vehicles on the Post Road.

He said the first phase of construction would involve striping, constructing a section of sidewalk, and developing the paths in the park. He said the only area of archeological concern is near the ball fields. He said there are ways to work around what is there or to design the project so the subsurface is not disturbed.

Mr. Donavan said grading would have to be done to the trails in the Park due to a 5 % slope requirement. He said it can be up to 8% grade, only if there is a level area every 30 to 40 feet. Mr. Donavan said 15 to 20 residents attended each of the meetings.

Mr. Donavan discussed the various funding sources available for the Town to explore. Mr. Hathaway said the Board needs to hold a meeting regarding the path proposal prior to applying to the State for funding for the bicycle pedestrian program. Mr. Hathaway said the Town would be required to apply for the total project cost in the application.

Ms. Ashcroft moved to accept the report. Mr. Dicton made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously. Mr. Donavan said he would make the same presentation to the Town School Board.

Mr. Rick Chase, representing TDI New England, met with the Board regarding plans to bury a 1000 Mega Watt DC Power line in the US Route 4 & 7 road rights-of-way. He said the line would run approximately 150 miles from Canada to a converter station in Cavendish, Vermont.

Mr. Chase said the project would be private financed. He said no ratepayer or taxpayer money will be used in the project. He told the Board that in New England in the next 3 to 4 years up to 8000 Mega Watts of power is scheduled to be retired.

Mr. Chase said the technology to transmit power, which his company will be using, has been in use for the past 50 to 60 years. He said the power line is buried in a trench about five feet deep. He said a concrete pad is set above the line. He said there is no oil or gels to leak from the cable(s). Mr. Chase said the line would be taxed like real property.

Mr. Chase said based on a study his company has done wholesale electric rates in Vermont will be reduced by about $100 million dollars over the next ten years. Mr. Chase said his company intends to create a public benefits fund. He said at this point he does not know what type project would qualify for the fund.

Mr. Chase said there has been strong interested expressed for using the money to clean up the phosphorus in Lake Champlain.He said greenhouse gas emissions in the State would be reduced by the importation of Natural Gas.

Mr. Chase said his company has applied for a federal permit to allow the company to move power over the international boarder. He said if the permits are received the project would be constructed between 2016 and 2018. Mr. Chase said the total project cost is sat at $1.2 billion dollars.

Ms. Ashcroft asked how the line would cross a bridge. Mr. Chase said they would likely tunnel under bridges and highways. He said they use horizontal directional drilling. Ms. Ashcroft told Mr.Chase that there were landslides when the bypass was constructed.

Messrs.' Dicton& Chioffi and Ms. Ashcroft questioned if the Town would receive any tax revenue from the line if it is located in a State road right-of-way verses a Town Right-of-way. Mr. Chase said he believes the Town would receive tax revenue.

Ms. Ashcroft questioned Mr. Chase regarding any safety concerns associated with the buried power line. Mr. Chase said his company is currently putting together a fact sheet regarding safety concerns. He said there is no electric fields associated with direct current (dc). He said the magnetic field associated with DC power are insignificant and would not be detected above the natural magnetic field background.

Mr. Chioffi suggested Mr. Chase consider donating funds to the Town proposed route from the Town School to Northwood Park. Mr. Chase said his company is open to talking with the Town. Mr. Chase said at this point in time the preferred route selection through the Town is US Routes 4&7.

Town Clerk & Treasurer Ms. Marie Hyjek reported:

  1. Told the Board that Town Delinquent Tax Collector Mr. Jim Scholtz delivered the annual delinquent turnover sheet on May 27. Ms. Hyjek said the turnover principal amount is $183,608.99. Ms. Hyjek said the amount is a decrease over last year by $115,000.00. She said Mr. Richard Lloyd left a little over $20,000.00 in delinquent taxes. Ms. Hyjek said there is a total of $205,000.00 in current delinquent taxes.

  2. Updated the Board regarding linking the Delinquent Tax collector computer to her computer.

  3. Informed the Board that the latest one percent local option tax revenues totaled $264,854.75. She said the fiscal year total is now $1,258,849.41. After subtracting the general budget there is a balance of $188,361.41. Ms. Hyjek said the money is to be used to lower the upcoming tax rate for the fiscal year.

  4. She cited the AM Peisch engagement letter, the warrant to destroy unlicensed dogs, the Lister software renewal, all requiring Board action.

  5. Ms. Hyjek informed the Board that she had not processed a Police Department bill for payment, because the item was not approved by the Board and not put out to bid. She told the Board she has a letter from Captain Washburn explaining why they chose to do it at this time.

  6. Cited a letter explaining the difference in the electrical power rate to be charged at Del Bianco Park at Dewey Field.

    Mr. Dicton told Ms. Hyjek that the Board previously discussed the recent purchase made by the police Department, which she is now questioning. Mr. Chioffi said the items purchased are equipment which goes on the vehicles. Mr. Chioffi said the equipment to go on the vehicles is to be taken out of this year's budget and Ms. Hyjek said the purchase was to come out of next year's budget.

Mr. Chioffi and Ms. Hyjek discussed the matter further. Mr.Chioffi said the purchase item was bid and that the bid received was real good. Ms. Hyjek said she would like a copy of the bid proposal. Ms. Hyjek said there is $800.00 in the Police equipment budget and a $10,000.00 for payment. Mr. Chioffi said it would be no problem to provide the bid information. Mr. Dicton said the Board has all of the paper and that he would see that Ms. Hyjek receives the information.

Mr. Chioffi said the bottom line is that the Police Budget from 2013 is not going to be exceeded by the Police Department. He said the department would only;y be using money appropriated for 2013.

The Board discussed the A.M. Peisch audit letter. Mr. Hawley said the audit would cost $12,900.75. Mr. Hawley said the price represents a 3% increase. He noted that there had not been and increase over the past 2 years.

The Board discussed whether to seek bids for the annual audit. Mr. Hawley cited the fact that there are few auditing firms that do municipal work. He said the 3% increase is about a $400.00 increase. Dicton made a motion to put the accounting out to bid. Ms. Ashcroft made a second to the motion.

Mr. Chioffi questioned if the Board has a policy regarding when such an item must be put out to bid. Mr. Hawley said anything over $2,000.00 unless it is a specialty item. The motion passed unanimously.

Mr. Chioffi moved to empower the police officers on the warrant issue for dogs. Mr. Dicton made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Mr. Chioffi moved for the Chairman to sign the Marshall & Swift software agreement for $238.81 with the State of Vermont Department of Taxes. Ms. Ashcroft made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Mr. Chioffi informed Board members that some of the marble at the Joseph J. Denardo Fire Station has been pilfered. He requested Mr. Hathaway move the marble on site. Mr. Hathaway will also secure the slate at the Town Municipal Building.

Town representative to the Rutland Regional Planning Commission, Mr. Sherman Hunter reported:

  1. Informed the Board that the RRPC had recently met with representatives with the New England Clean Power Link. He said the presentation was similar to the one the Select Board received.

  2. He told the Board other items discussed at the last RRPC meeting included the RRPC Budget and Work Plan for the coming year.

  3. He said the RRPC also reviewed two Act 250 applications and three Act 248 applications. Mr. Hunter said two of the Act 248 application had to do with Wireless phone towers. Mr.Hunter said the RRPC would consider any concerns raised by the host community. He said if there are no local concerns then the RRPC would look at Regional impact.

  4. Mr. Hunter said it is very important for communities to express their concerns when a solar farm is proposed.

Ms. Ashcroft asked Mr. Hunter if the RRPC is discussing dealing with the gas pipeline, and the DC power line on a regional bases. Mr. Hunter said there has been no long range discussion regarding the matter. Ms. Ashcroft said the RRPC should be helping communities deal with the proposals.

Ms. Ashcroft asked if the RRPC budget has money to assist communities that are in the path of the pipeline or the DC power line. Mr. Hunter said the budget includes funds for assistance to communities.

Town Road Commissioner Mr. Byron Hathaway reported:

  1. Requested permission to advertise for winter sand using the same procedure he has used in the past. Mr. Hawley and Mr. Chioffi said they do not have a problem in using the same procedure.

  2. Requested permission to bid the screening of waste dirt. He said the screened material would be used by the highway department. Board members had no problem with the request.

  3. Informed the Board that the marble at the Joseph J. Denardo Station needs to be restacked on better quality pallets before he can move the marble. Mr. Hathaway will make arrangements to move the marble. Board members said the marble would be used I the planters to be built at the station. Mr. Chioffi said the Board could sell any remaining marble.

  4. Informed the Board that the West Rutland Town Manager has inquired as to whether the Town of Rutland would like to participate with West Rutland in a joint feasibility study for connecting the Rutland Town Park & Ride lot to the West Rutland Park & Ride lot.

    He said the connection would either be US RT 4 or Boardman Hill. He said the route would be determined through the feasibility study. Mr. Hathaway said the Town's cost would be between $800.00 and $1,000.00 .

    He said West Rutland would be the lead applicant and would write the grant application. Mr. Hathaway said the route would be for bike / pedestrian use.

    Ms. Ashcroft moved to participate with the Town of West Rutland in a bike / pedestrian feasibility study. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

  5. Informed the Board of a garbage dumping complaint.

  6. Mr. Hathaway and Mr. Dicton discussed the replacement of the Road Commissioner's Town truck. Mr. Hathaway will wire brush the current truck and touch up the areas which need paint. Mr. Hathaway said he had received a price of $4,100 to sand blast the truck body.

    Mr. Hathaway briefed the Board regarding Ms. Marie Pennington's Hitzel Terrace storm water runoff problem. Board members, Ms. Pennington and Mr. Hathaway discussed the matter at length.

    The Board approved Mr. Hathaway switching the Hitzel Terrace road drainage from the west side of the road to the east side of the road. Mr. Hathaway will also go to the Pennington lot and try to locate a drainage swale he believes is on the property. Mr. Hathaway will clean out the swale, which he believes has been filled in and is no longer providing a channel for storm water run off.

Town Fire Chief Mr. Frank Cioffi reported:

  1. Informed the Board that the funeral for Mr.Clifford Young would be on June 7, 2014 at 1:00 P.M. At the Young property on Rob Shawn Place.

  2. Told the Board he is checking on the work at the to make sure everything is getting done.

  3. Informed the Board he has received three estimates for constructing the barrier/planters at the station. Mr. Cioffi will put the work out to bid.

Mr. Martin Wasserman suggested the Board erect a brass plaque at the Joseph J. Denardo Fire Station thanking Gawet marble for their gift of the marble. Mr. Hawley said Mr. Wasserman should write something and submit it to the Board.

Mr. Dicton presented the following two week Police Report:

-Calls for service within the two week period: 43

- Total calls year to date in 2014: 360

- Total calls year to date in 2013: 118

-Types of calls assigned
Residential / Business Alarm, Animal problem, Sex Offender Registry checks, Suspicious Person / Circumstances, Citizen Disputes, Agency Assist, Threatening, Welfare Checks, Motor Vehicle Complaints, Found Property, Motor Vehicle Crash, Burglary, Service of Abuse Prevention Order, Juvenile Problem, Property Watch, Directed Patrol, Family Fight and 911 hang up.

Closed Cases: 40

  1. Chief Dumas: 46.5

  2. Captain Washburn: 71

  3. Officer Gamble: 44

Total number of Admin hours: 25

  1. Chief Dumas: 11.5

  2. Captain Washburn: 1

  3. Officer Gamble: 0

Mr. Chioffi said the two new police vehicles have been ordered and should be here for July. Mr. Chioffi & Mr. Dicton will decided on the color for the vehicles. Mr. Chioffi said the department will continue to use their existing radios rather than purchase new radios.

Town Recreation Director, Mr. Mike Rowe, reported:

  1. He submitted a revised Recreation Capital Plan for Board consideration.

  2. Told the Board the pool will open on Saturday June 7, 2014.

  1. Submitted the names of those who applied to work as lifeguards at the Town pool. Mr. Dicton made a motion to accept the roster for the 2014 Pool lifeguards. Ms. Ashcroft made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously

  2. Baseball is going very well.

  3. Mr. Rowe requested permission to purchase a utility vehicle to replace the tractor in the recreation department. Board members discussed the golf cart purchase wit Mr. Rowe. Mr. Dicton made a motion to accept the golf cart for Mike's needs and to spend no more than $1,100.00 Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

  4. Mr. Rowe told the Board he will not be at the next meeting.

Mr. Martin Wasserman town TAC representative reported:

  1. The TAC was given a tour of the airport and were shown the runway extension.

Mr. Joseph Zingale Jr. Town Administrator reported:

  1. Presented the Comcast Thank You letter for signature. Will revise for spelling error.

  2. Informed the Board that he has not received a reply regarding the Board's Health Order to clean up and secure the residence at 480 Hitzel Terrace. Mr. Hawley said Town should hire a property management company to secure and clean the residence. Mr. Chioffi moved to authorize Mr. Zingale to contract with a management company of his choosing to get the building secured. Ms. Ashcroft made a second to the motion.

    Mr. Dicton questioned how the Board would pay for the work. Mr. Hawley said the Board could take the money from miscellaneous or deficit spend. Ms. Hyjek said the proper place to get the money would be from the miscellaneous account. The motion passed unanimously.

  3. Informed the Board that the Tow will need to talk to Act 250 before finalizing new and improved trails with in Northwood Park.

  4. Cited the Post Road Electrical Panel relocation contract document for the Board to sign as well as an easement with Green Mountain Power Corp. for Mr. Hawley to sign for the Board.

  5. Informed the Board that the Town Attorney would like a Select Board members to be a witness in the upcoming Cold River Road Solar Farm Act 240 hearing. Board members decided that Ms. Ashcroft would be the Town's witness. Mr. Zingale told Board members that the individuals opposing the groSolar proposal have offered to fund a town expert witness.

    Mr. Zingale said the opponents do not have standing regarding Prime Agricultural soils where as the Town Board does have standing and can participate in the hearing and offer testimony.

  6. Mr. Zingale told the Board that upon closer investigation using the Town's computer mapping program he believes the majority if not all of the new fence along Karen Drive is not located in the Town Road Right-of-Way. Mr. Zingale will write a letter to Mr. Anderson informing him the Town will not be responsible if the fence is damaged by winter plowing. Mr. Zingale told the Board that Karen Drive is not centered within the road R-O-W.

  7. Mr. Zingale circulated a photo of the type ice guards available for the Town Municipal Building roof. Mr. Zingale said the cost would be $8,500.00 to do two south and east sides of the roof.

    Mr. Chioffi asked Mr. Zingale if the Town had submitted a Historic grant application for the new roof. Mr. Zingale said he had begun investigating submitting an applicant for up to $25,000.00 in grant money when the Board put the project on hold. He said over the winter the Board decided to contract for the installation of a new roof.

    Board members discussed the pros and cons regarding installing the ice roof guards. Ms. Ashcroft moved to purchase the snow guards and to get a silver or grey color if available. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Ms. Ashcroft moved to authorize herself and Mr. Dicton to award the 2014 Scholarships. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Ms. Ashcroft moved to approve the Listers request for a 30 day extension to file the Grand List. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. Mr. Chioffi said the Board should not allow missing the deadline to occur. Mr. Chioffi said the Town's personal property consultant is the reason for the delays. Mr. Chioffi said the individual is always late turning in her work. The motion passed by a vote of

3 to 0 to 1. Mr. Chioffi abstained from the vote.

Ms. Ashcroft moved to approve the Hubbard Brother's application for a State certified Salvage Yard and to collect the $25.00 fee. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Ms. Ashcroft moved to table the Vtel pole request to the next meeting. Mr.Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Ms. Ashcroft moved to put the Solar facility Siting Standards on the next agenda. Mr. Dicton made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Ms. Ashcroft moved to sign the easement with Green Mountain Power. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Ms. Ashcroft made a motion to go into executive session at 10:25 P.M. To discuss a personnel matter, a letter from a town resident which could result in a land purchase and to discuss pending litigation. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Mr. Hawley declared the executive session closed at 10:45 P.M.

Ms. Ashcroft made a motion to modify the Personel Policy to reflect that annual vacation leave may be purchased at 50% of the employee's pay rate in any given year. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Meeting adjourned at 11:00 P.M.