Chichester Board of Selectmen
October 18, 2005
Present: Chairman DeBold, Selectman Colbert, Selectman MacCleery and Patty Wooster, Administrative Assistant. Chairman DeBold opened the meeting at 7:00PM.
SUBJECT: Road Agent
HIGHLIGHTS: The Road Agent, Mr. David Kenneally met with the Board of Selectmen to discuss the road conditions after torrential rains fell over the weekend. Mr. Kenneally reported that Perry Brook Road washed out. He said he had to temporarily close four town roads due to flooding- Perry Brook Road, Cross Road, Hilliard Road and Martel Road. Mr. Kenneally informed the Board that he documented and took pictures of the roads. He stated to fix the roads correctly it would cost approximately $20,000.00. Mr. Kenneally stated that he has been in touch with FEMA. He said he thought that FEMA would help with the cost of the repairs, but the work needed to be done this year.
Mr. Kenneally reported that on Martel Road a fire truck had dropped down in the road due to flooding. Mr. Kenneally reported that the second culvert on Martel Road was completely gone and needed to be replaced.
Mr. Kenneally wanted to thank Carol Raymond and the Fire Department for their assistance in traffic control and monitoring the roadways. Also, a big thank you to Emergency Management Director, John Martell who helped Mr. Kenneally notifying residents and keeping cars off the roads. The Selectmen would like to thank the Road Agent, David Kenneally and all those who helped him with traffic control and monitoring of the flooding water. THANK YOU TO ALL FOR DOING AN OUTSTANDING JOB KEEPING OUR RESIDENTS SAFE!
Mr. Kenneally was concerned about going over his budget. He stated that because of work being done on Webster Mills Bridge he will probably go over his budget. He said that back in 2004 at Town Meeting and amount of $24,999 was added to the Highway Department Bridge and Culvert budget line for the engineering and design of the bridge. To date $18,509.65 has been spent above the above the amount of $24,999. Also, because of the rain over the last week it will cost approximately $20,000.00 to repair the damaged roads. Mr. Kenneally asked if an emergency Town Meeting could be called to ask the Town to allow the Selectmen to withdraw money from the Capital Reserve Fund, Bridges and Culverts. Chairman DeBold said he did not think that the courts would approve the request and asked
Patty to call the Department of Revenue to ask how to get emergency funds to cover the costs of road repair and bridge work being done on Webster Mills Road.
Mr. Kenneally reported that he received a telephone call from a resident who lives on King Road. This resident stated that beavers had built a dam (and he was not sure if it was on his property or his neighbors) and the dam is backing up the culvert causing water to overflow into his yard. He is concerned with the water contaminating his well and doing damage to his leachfield. Mr. Kenneally stated that he had knocked down the dam, but the beavers will build the dam back up. He suggested trapping the beavers and relocate them to a different area.
Chairman DeBold asked Mr. Kenneally why the Town was being billed by Carol Raymond for use of her car as an emergency vehicle. Mr. Kenneally stated he needed someone on the other side of Town to inspect roads and flag traffic. Selectman MacCleery asked why the big truck was not being used for that purpose. Mr. Kenneally stated that he did not want to make roads worse then they were. He feared that the big truck, like the fire truck would sink into the road.
SUBJECT: Concerned Citizens for Outdoor Lighting Committee
HIGHLIGHTS: Those representing the committee were Kate Hall, Katie Ruoff, Linda Rauter and Naomi Hussey. Ms. Ruoff spoke on behalf of the committee. She asked if the Selectmen heard back from Carol Murphy, the Commissioner for the Department of Transportation regarding the letter that was sent by the Selectmen requesting assistance with light glare on Route 4. Chairman DeBold said that the letter was sent around August 2, 2005. The Board of Selectmen has not received a response from Ms. Murphy to date. Chairman DeBold said that he called Commissioner Murphy’s office approximately two weeks ago and left a message on her voicemail. Selectman Colbert stated that the Board of Selectmen had sent a letter to District 5 regarding low limbs on tress on Canterbury Road and
drainage problems on Horse Corner Road. Selectman Colbert stated the office has not received a response from District 5. Selectman Colbert stated that he did not know what to do to get their attention. It was suggested that the Selectmen write a letter to our State Representatives, Jack Barnes, Bill Field and Vinnie Greico with copies to the Governor and Ms. Murphy. Chairman DeBold suggested that he and Patty could draft a letter to Representatives for the Selectmen to review at their next meeting.
Ms. Hall asked the Selectmen if they would be interested in purchasing a light meter. Chairman DeBold said it might be a good idea, since the Town does have a light ordinance. Selectman MacCleery asked how much a light meter costs. Ms. Hall stated that she hasn’t checked the cost in a long time, but, she thought the cost was between $200 and $300. Chairman DeBold said the Board should wait to see what comes out of the new proposed lighting ordinance. Ms. Hall stated that with new businesses coming into Town we should have someone to “police” the lights, she suggested that perhaps the Town Engineer could monitor the lights. Chairman DeBold stated that it was up to the Planning Board to be sure that the lights and signs of new development are designed and planned to meet
the Town’s Ordinances. Mrs. Hall stated that the Planning Board Subcommittee has proposed in the newly Lighting Ordinances that all businesses should be in compliance with the lighting ordinance in 2011.
Ms. Ruoff stated that she took a survey of Towns to see who had Code Enforcement Officers and who they were. Ms. Ruoff polled 17 towns and discovered that 13 of these towns employed Building Inspectors for zoning enforcement and 4 towns had Code Enforcement Officers. She discovered that 2 towns that have Code Enforcement Officers are full time employees and their average salary is $44,000 and two towns that employ part time Code Enforcement Officers have a salary of $29,000. She stated none of the towns she surveyed use Selectmen or Police Officers as code enforcers. She asked why the Town of Chichester uses it’s Selectmen as code enforcers. Chairman DeBold stated that the Town does not presently have the resources to pay someone full or part time.
Mrs. Rauter stated that the lights should be reviewed in the planning process so the Town would not have to issue violations. She stated that the Town needed a pro-active code enforcement officer.
Selectman MacCleery stated that an escrow account could be set up by the Planning Board and they could hold the money until everything was done properly. Mrs. Ruoff asked why the Building Inspector could not be the code enforcement officer and why he could not issue compliance letters. Selectmen MacCleery stated that the Town would have to change how we would get revenue for the building inspector. The position would have to be looked at.
Chairman DeBold questioned whether Chichester really needs a full time code enforcement officer. Selectman Colbert suggested that if a position like that is created we would have to be very careful as we would all be under the careful scrutiny of a Code Enforcement Officer. Chairman DeBold thinks that going forward the word is out amongst potential developers and existing business owners that Chichester is taking their zoning seriously.
SUBJECT: Mr. Joe Austin
HIGHLIGHTS: Mr. Austin met with the Board of Selectmen regarding his building project on Route 4. He said that the Attorney General’s Office had approved his application for building a 55 or over community. He said that his attorney sent the Town of Chichester’s attorney a copy of the By-Laws and was waiting for a response. Mr. Austin stated that he had ten days to get back to the Attorney General’s office with the acceptance by the Town. He said that the Town Attorney was holding up the process and wanted the Board of Selectmen to speak to the Town Attorney and ask him for his input regarding the By-Laws. Mr. Austin asked if the Selectmen could call the Town Attorney and ask him to contact his attorney so that he could get moving on his project. He said
the Attorney General’s Office had a copy of the By-Laws and was waiting to hear from Mr. Austin regarding the Town’s approval. He said he needs a letter from the Town Attorney agreeing to the By-Laws and then the Planning Board will sign the maylar. The Board agreed that Chairman DeBold would contact the Town Attorney to inquire about the issue of the review of Mr. Austins’s By-Laws for his proposed 55 and over development.
SUBJECT: General Business
HIGHLIGHTS: The Selectmen briefly discussed the request of the Historical Society to use cable franchise fees to purchase a digital projector. A Motion was made by Chairman DeBold to grant the request by the Historical Society in connection with the Library and Conservation Committee to purchase a digital projector not to exceed $1,400.00. The Motion was seconded by Selectman Colbert. A vote was taken and all were in favor.
A Motion was made by Selectman MacCleery to change the pay period from pay period beginning Monday and ending Friday to the pay period beginning on Sunday and ending on Saturday. Selectman Colbert seconded the Motion. A vote was taken and all were in favor.
Patty asked the Selectmen about the signs for the Historical Society. She asked whether the Road Department, Selectmen’s Office or the Historical Society pays for the road signs. One sign was a “no parking sign” and the other sign was a “historical sign” giving direction to Thunder Bridge. Selectman Colbert stated that the Historical Society should pay for the historical signs. He said that the Road Department and the Selectmen’s Budget were strained and the historical society should put money in their budget for next year to purchase the signs. He also advised the Historical Society check with District 5 if signs were going to be placed on Route 28. Patty will send a letter to the Historical Society.
Selectman Colbert was signing invoices and noticed that Mr. Jeff Andrews of the Conservation Commission had authorized payment of an invoice. Selectman Colbert thought that the Chairman of the Commission was the only one who could authorize payments. Patty was asked to send a memo to the Conservation Commission advising them that the Chair is the only person with authority to submit invoices. Or the Chairman can send a letter allowing Mr. Andrews to submit invoices for payment.
Selectman MacCleery had asked if Patty had a chance to ask the Town Clerk, Mrs. Evelyn Pike if she had a copy of the Planning Board’s Rules of Procedure. Patty stated that she asked Mrs. Pike if she had a copy of the Planning Board’s Rules of Procedure and she said she did not. Patty stated that she sent an e-mail to the Planning Board Secretary, Ms. Andrea Deachman and asked her for a copy. Ms. Deachman responded to Patty and told her that she (Ms. Deachman) was waiting for a copy from Selectman MacCleery. Selectman MacCleery stated that he may have the Rules of Procedure from when he was the Chairman of Planning Board. He said if that is the last time the Rules of Procedure were written, then the Planning Board needs to address this issue and update the Planning Board’s
Rules of Procedure. Patty was asked to send a memo to the Planning Board requesting an updated Rules of Procedure.
Chairman DeBold told Selectmen MacCleery and Colbert that he was in the office on Wednesday and spoke to Mrs. Pike and Mrs. Erin Hamer, the office assistant, regarding a payroll issue. It seems that in 2003 Mrs. Pike was being paid on a monthly basis. In December of 2003 there were five weeks in that month. Mrs. Pike was only paid for four weeks. She was not paid for the fifth week in December. Mrs. Pike feels the Town owes her one weeks pay from December 2003. Based on the research that Mrs. Hamer did, it was discovered that Mrs. Pike was correct and was not paid for the fifth week in December 2003. Selectman Colbert stated that if Mrs. Pike worked that week she should be paid for it. The Selectmen were in agreement and Mrs. Pike will be paid from her budget line of this
Selectman MacCleery stated that he received a call from the Health Officer, Dr. Ed Meehan. Dr. Meehan telephone Selectman MacCleery to tell him that he received a call from a resident on Webster Mills Road who was concerned about manure from a neighbor’s barn running from the farm into the road and into her driveway. She was also concerned about water that was being pumped out of their basement and on to the road.
Selectman Colbert spoke to the other Board Members regarding the proposed zoning that has been drawn up by the Planning Board Sub Committee. He said that he spoke with his brother-in-law and asked him his recollection of the process the subcommittee was to follow regarding any proposed zoning. Selectman Colbert and his brother-in-law agreed that any zoning proposed changes where to be submitted to the other boards, Board of Adjustments, Planning Board and Board of Selectmen for their review. Then a vote would be taken and the majority vote determines any changes. Then the proposed changes would be submitted to the Town Attorney for his review. Then have a public meeting.
Patty asked the Board of Selectmen if she could post a sign on the door advising the public that there are no public restrooms. The Board agreed.
Patty asked the Selectmen for their approval to close the Staples account and open an account with Officeland. The reason for this is there are too many errors on the Staples Statement. Officeland is a local office supply company and will deliver the next day. The Selectmen agreed that this is a good idea.
The Selectmen reviewed a telephone log that was created for the Highway Department and the Planning Board. The Board of Selectmen want the Highway Department and Planning Board to use these logs for all calls that come into the these departments.
The Board signed payroll and accounts payable.
Legal correspondence, mail and e-mail were reviewed.
The Minutes from October 18, 2005 were reviewed and approved.
Being no further business, Chairman DeBold adjourned the meeting at 10:45pm.
Chairman Richard DeBold