Selectmen Meeting Minutes — December 5, 2011 — 7:00 p.m. —
John delayed the start of the meeting because Joe was caught in heavy traffic.
Call to order: John called the meeting to order at 7:25 p.m. Other members present: Joe Judd. Absent: Robert Manners (Bob submitted written comments on certain issues).
Acceptance of Meeting Minutes: Joe presented a motion to accept the minutes of November 21, 2011 and November 29, 2011 as presented. John seconded the motion. Motion passed.
Department Liaison Reports:
Highway Department - The one ton truck has a new sander made of composite materials so it will not be prone to rust. The crew has kept busy performing routine maintenance on equipment and cleaning bleeders. Asphalt plants closed on December 2nd. Bob held a staff meeting with the department and reported that it went well.
DOER Energy Efficiency Grant Update:
Memorial Hall Window Replacement Project is near completion. All windows are in; minor finish work remains (trim, caulking, insulation, painting, etc). Architect Joe Mattei will perform final inspection once the job is complete.
Highway Garage Boiler Replacement - Bob met with a representative from Country Oil last week who has agreed to provide a heat loss analysis, and recommendations for a boiler replacement, including estimated energy savings and efficiency payback. Country Oil will provide a cost estimate for three infrared radiant heaters (a recommendation made by Siemens). Note: We need a comparative analysis to show if the infrared heaters, including heating costs over time, are less or more expensive then oil heat.
Cowell Gymnasium Mold Remediation - Aspen Environmental completed a preliminary walk-through of the Cowell Gymnasium in late November. They have recommended that the Town hire a consulting firm specializing in microbial assessments. Aspen provided Joe with the names of two such firms. Joe has spoken with Covino Environmental Associates of Woburn, MA who have agreed to make a site visit for an estimated cost of $300 to $600 (which includes travel, mileage, etc.). Once Covino has completed a walk-through, they will submit a proposal for costs associated with the limited microbial assessment, the preparation of a site specific work plan and performing the post-microbial remediation verification sampling.
Preservation of Lifetime Records - John has received responses from a few departments. He will review the information and discuss at a future meeting.
Highway Laborer Vacancy - no one responded to the internal posting therefore the Board decided to re-advertise the position again.
Joseph Mattei, Shelburne Architects RE: Greenfield Savings Bank Renovation Project - Bob spoke with Joe Mattei and informed him that the Board is supportive of the proposed tree removal and replacement. Joe will discuss tree selection with the Tree Warden, the Highway Superintendent, and the Tree Committee before the spring project begins.
Town of Charlemont RE: Revised Transfer Station Lease Agreement - John indicated that he is unwilling to sign the revised lease in its present state. Bob has not had an opportunity to discuss the document with the Charlemont Select Board members before leaving on vacation. John suggested that Terry contact Charlemont to determine their willingness to reconsider some of the changes made to the agreement. In the meantime, Joe has begun preliminary dialogue with Solid Waste Director, Jan Ameen with regards to costs and permitting requirements associated with the start-up of a town-owned facility.
Wired West Draft By-Laws and Cooperative Agreement - John and Joe reviewed the proposed documents and discussed areas of concern. Concerns included the mention of commercial wind turbines in the opening paragraph, the potential imposition of an annual fee in addition to the membership fee, and decisions made by a simple majority vote. John will draft a memo to Dan Lieberman seeking clarification in these areas.
Fiscal Year 2013 Budget Directives - Bob recommended a 2.5% to 3% salary increase for all employees. Given the weak economic climate and the difficulty residents are having paying their taxes; John felt it was more appropriate to offer employees a cost of living increase and request that operating budgets be level-funded with the understanding that the Board is willing to consider specific needs above and beyond level-funding. Joe agreed that the Board must be conservative in their spending (including capital expenditures). Joe will speak to the Police Chief to see whether the Town can postpone the purchase of a new cruiser for yet another year. Terry will seek the current cost of living index. The Board shall vote on budget directives when Bob returns.
Review of West County Relief Application - Joe presented a motion to accept the West County Relief Application as presented. John seconded the motion and publicly thanked Mary Vilbon for her hard work. Motion passed.
Franklin County Sherriff's Office RE: Dog Officer Control and Kennel Proposal - Joe and John agreed that Shelburne will not participate in the Regional Dog Officer, Control, and Kennel Program. Shelburne is fortunate to have dedicated individuals who work hard to locate a dog's owner or prospective adoptive families at little or no cost to the Town. In the past two years Shelburne has spent $25.00 or less on animal control related expenses.
ABCC RE: Estimate of Increased Population as of July 10, 2012 - Each year the Board must determine whether there will be a substantial increase in population during the summer months and report said increase to the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission. In keeping with prior years, the Board will report a minimal increase in population.
Temporary Pay Grade Adjustment for Acting Highway Foreman - Acting Highway Foreman, Mark Shippee is seeking additional compensation while overseeing the department in the Superintendent's absence. In March, 2011, the Board voted to increase Mark's salary an additional $2.84 per hour for a two week period while the Superintendent was recovering from injury. The Town's personnel policies allow for an additional $1.00 per hour while an employee is acting as Foreman. Joe and John decided to take no action until they can review the minutes of the March 11th meeting.
Ashfield Select Board RE: Senior Center Consortium Membership - Members of the Ashfield Selectboard voted to rescind a June 14, 2011 letter of intent to withdraw from the Shelburne Senior Center Consortium. Ashfield looks forward to continuing to work with member Towns, local Councils on Aging, and Senior Center Staff. John and Joe were extremely pleased to receive this news.
Harvey Schaktman RE: Winter Parking Ban - Last January, the Town Highway Department towed Harvey's car for parking in a prohibited area during the winter parking ban. Displeased with the manner in which his situation was handled, Harvey notified the Board in writing that he will no longer allow the general public to park in the two spaces behind his building at 20-26 Bridge Street. Rather he will reserve them for his personal use. Joe will acknowledge Harvey's letter.
Winter Parking Ban - The Board talked briefly about the lack of available parking for residents living in the downtown area during the winter months. While they agreed that landlords are obligated to provide parking; many do not. Terry suggested creating a map that depicts designated areas and the hours of availability so that tenants have a place to park without impeding snow removal efforts.
Tax Title Properties - Various parties have expressed an interest in purchasing two properties located at the end of Main Street near the Colrain line which are currently held in tax title. John is working with Donna MacNicol regarding the process for the Town to auction these properties in the absence of living, known owners.
Public Comment: none
Adjournment: Joe presented a motion to adjourn at 9:12 p.m. John seconded the motion. Motion passed.
Posted to: Selectboard