Town of Pittsford, Vermont

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Town of Pittsford Select Board Meeting

August 6, 2008 

                       

Thomas "Hank" Pelkey opened the meeting at 6:30 PM.  Select Board members present were:  Thomas "Hank" Pelkey, Allen Hitchcock, Thomas Hooker, and Joseph Gagnon. David Markowski was absent.  Also present were John Haverstock, Linda Drummond, John & Linda Weeden, and State Representative Margaret "Peg" Flory.  Tom Carrara arrived at 6:35 PM. Lee Kahrs arrived at 6:45 PM.   

 

MINUTES   

The Select Board minutes of July 16, 2008 were approved. 

 

ORDERS

The orders of August 1, 2008 were approved in the amounts of $28,197.10, $15,142.61, $13,656.51, and $334.95.

 

TOWN MANAGER'S REPORT

Passing of Anthony Tennien

The Town Manager was honored to attend the memorial service for recently departed Anthony Tennien, who provided dedicated decades and service to the people of Pittsford as Zoning Administrator and volunteer Firefighter.

 

Pittsford Merchants Association

J. Haverstock attended his first Pittsford Merchants Association meeting held at the Pittsford Food Shelf with a tour and informative talk by Robin Rowe.

 

Newsletter

The Assistant to the Town Manager, Linda Drummond, has completed the quarterly newsletter, after collecting news the residents of Pittsford can use from a variety of sources.  The summer newsletter is expected to be delivered August 14 or 15, 2008.

 

Highway Department

With the Town Manager's consent, the Highway Department made speedy repairs to an eroding embankment surrounding a culvert under Arch Street, across the street from Village Manor, through excavation and the construction of a retaining wall.

 

Water & Sewer Bills

Utility bills went out on July 17.

 

Tax Bills

Tax bills went out on July 22.

 

Red Cross

Omya will be sponsoring an American Red Cross Blood Drive on Tuesday, August 12, 2008 at the Lothrop Elementary School gymnasium in Pittsford from 12:30 to 5:30 PM.

 

Audit

The firm of Sullivan & Powers will be conducting the Town's annual audit from September 2 through 5.  The Town staff is preparing for this audit.

 

Collision at Cooley Bridge

The modest repairs needed to the bridge have been made.  Payment has been received for the estimate on the repairs from the NewYork mobile home company which employs the trucker who caused the damage.

 

Sugar Hollow Road

J. Haverstock stated that there have been several accidents in the same location on Sugar Hollow Road.  A new warning sign has been posted and spot grading will be done as soon as the grader is repaired.  The Constable and Highway Foreman will make recommendations to the Town Manager about potential changes to the 35 mph speed limit.

 

Efficiency Vermont

Efficiency Vermont is working on the Town with an energy audit to assess the Town's energy usage by providing inventory forms for gathering lighting data from all municipal buildings. They will make recommendations on how the Town can economize and become more eco-friendly. 

 

Omya Discussion Group

J. Haverstock attended the Omya discussion group focused on the on-going groundwater monitoring by Geosyntech.

 

West Creek Road

J. Haverstock met with Chris Schmelzenbach, project engineer from Infrastructure Engineering,

to review the West Creek Road reconstruction project and stressed the need to move forward.  C. Schmelzenbach will have bids ready for Town review next week to address the sag in the road and culvert work.  Guardrail and paving will follow after that work is complete.

 

ECFiber

EC Fiber has a PowerPoint presentation that can be presented at the convenience of the Board.  They also suggested that Pittsford could set up a Citizens Advisory Board on telecommunications as other towns in the area have done.

 

PUBLIC COMMENT

Discussion was held with regard to the Select Board's authority to set the speed limits on Town highways.

Discussion was held with regard to the Listers' compensation.  The Board is waiting for a compensation proposal from the Listers' office.

Linda Weeden inquired about the status of the wind towers and the proposed work camp.

Two test wind towers have been put up but not in Pittsford.

Regarding the work camp, Peg Flory explained that there was a complete reorganization in corrections with a reconfiguration of Correction facilities.  The Corrections department is no longer looking for work camp siting.

John & Linda Weeden inquired about whose responsibility it is to maintain a private cemetery located in East Pittsford near their home.  Several residents have been maintaining the cemetery.

J. Haverstock will research the ownership of the property and review the issue with VLCT.

 

 

Presentation by State Representative Peg Flory

The Route 7 Project, as of two weeks ago, is still scheduled to start this summer with pole relocations.  The money and proposal are there for the State to begin the project.

 

The Fire Academy will remain in Pittsford and the classrooms for firefighters are to be built in Pittsford, with State funding though slightly smaller than initially anticipated.  Prep work has started for the classrooms with ground-breaking in the fall.

 

Another issue is the mosquito control this year.  There is State money available to sign up for the Mosquito District for next year.

 

Because of Rutland's Sex Offender Ordinance, several Pittsford residents have contacted Peg with regard to whether the State is doing anything about sex offenders.  Further discussion was held.

 

Tom Hooker requested P. Flory to contact the State to have them mow at least once along the Route 7 roadside between Pittsford and Brandon because the grass is so high, it is a safety issue.

 

OLD BUSINESS

Management of Town Forest/Nickwackett Block

The Town executed a contract governing logging operations by Claire Lathrop Band Mill, Inc.  The Town has also received the first of four equal payments toward the purchase price, with the next payment to occur at the beginning of operations.  All funds are being earmarked for purposes of purchasing a more permanent easement if and when the opportunity arises.  We continue to notify easement provider, Melissa Hoffman, of developments.  The Town has solicited bids from several brush hogging firms for the one-time clearing (cost not to exceed $500.00) of meadows on Ms.Hoffman's land, in compliance with the terms of our Temporary Easement Agreement.

 

J. Haverstock has consulted the County Forester, who will revise his Management Plan for this block's enrollment in the current use program.

 

Ancient Roads Committee Update

Peg Armitage and Peg Flory are willing to serve on the new Ancient Roads Committee and the summer Town newsletter has a notice will be seeking additional committee members.  There is grant funding available for education of the Ancient Roads Committee membership.

 

Proposed Discontinuance of Road in Chittenden/Scheduling for Joint Meeting

There is a proposed joint meeting for the Select Board members of Chittenden, Pittsfield, and Pittsford to meet either on September 27th or October 4th at 9:00 AM.  This meeting will be held at the intersection of Green Road/McKinlay Rd. to discuss the proposed discontinuance of Green Rd.

 

Potential Purchase of Extended Warranty for International Truck

J. Haverstock stated that the potential extended warranty for the International truck purchased in early 2007 is 84 month, 100,000 mile, or 3,600 hour custom contract.  The cost of the warranty is $7,310.00.  The purchase of the extended warranty was overlooked at the time of purchase of the truck.  A. Hitchcock made a motion to purchase the extended warranty for the International truck for $7,310.00.  T. Hooker seconded the motion.  The motion was passed, 3 to 0 with 1 abstention.

 

Newsletter

Thomas "Hank" Pelkey requested that the full text of the Listers' newsletter submission be entered into the public record along with the edited published copy of the article.  Because portions were deemed inappropriate to the purposes of a newsletter, revisions were made by the Town Manager, John Haverstock, upon the consensus instructions of the majority of the Select Board.

                              The original full text of the Listers' submission is as follows:

July 2008 Newsletter

     The Listers heard 22 Grievances in June.  Results of Grievance were mailed July 3rd and the Grand List was lodged on July 9th.  The State will set Pittsford's education tax rate and the Selectboard will set the municipal rate.  Tax bills should be mailed later in July. 

     The State mailed tax adjustment notices the first week of July.  These amounts will be deducted on your tax bill.  If you still haven't filed your homestead form (HS122), the deadline is September 4th.  Filings after this date will not receive any adjustment for this tax year.

            On May 7, 2008 Jack Rogers Sr. was appointed to the Board of Listers to fill one of the two vacancies in our office.  Jack joins us with a background in Real Estate appraisal and modular home construction.  There is still an additional opening for another lister.

     The Listers proposed a budget of $24,950 for FY 2009, starting July 1, 2008.  The issue of Listers compensation still needs to be resolved between the Selectboard and Listers.  In the past, Listers' pay has been based upon the actual hours worked.  It is not clear what will happen when the workload is heavy, as it has been recently.  For the summertime and fall months, the Listers will reduce their office hours to Mondays, Wednesday s and Thursdays from 9 AM to 1 PM and will continue to perform critical work such as reviewing sales for the equalization study used to establish the CLA and COD, processing transfers, and preparing for the BCA hearings.

     The Lister's office is responsible for creating the base from which the entire Town of Pittsford is funded.  In addition, this information is useful to many, including townspeople, assessors, lawyers, real estate agents, the zoning administrator, planning board, town clerk, neighboring towns, and state employees.  We enjoy the challenge of maintaining fair and accurate records and try to be helpful whenever we are asked for assistance. Several times a year we attend classes and conferences.

     Unfortunately, some important projects will be put on hold due to this lack of funding.  Business Equipment accounts are overdue for outside review to update information.  As elected officials, we are responsible to the townspeople of Pittsford.  We hope that eventually, with your support, we can restore funding and a fairer payment system to this office so that we can do our work properly.

     Thank you to all Pittsford Property owners for your feedback and constructive involvement during the Grievance period; we appreciate your input.

     Linda Trask, our secretary, will be in the Listers' Office from Monday through Thursday from 9 AM to 1 PM.  The telephone number is 483-2275 ext.15.

 

 

Listers article edited as it appeared in the Summer Newsletter to be distributed 8/14/08:

The Listers heard 22 Grievances in June.  Results of Grievance were mailed July 3rd and the Grand List was lodged on July 9th.  Tax bills were mailed July 22, 2008.

The State mailed tax adjustment notices the first week of July.  These amounts will be deducted on your tax bill.  If you still haven't filed your homestead form (HS122), the deadline is September 4th.  Filings after this date will not receive any adjustment for this tax year.

On May 7, 2008 Jack Rogers Sr. was appointed to the Board of Listers to fill one of the two vacancies in our office.  Jack joins us with a background in Real Estate appraisal and modular home construction.  There is still an additional opening for another lister.

For the summertime and fall months, the Listers will conduct their office hours on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9 AM to 1 PM.

The Lister's office is responsible for creating the base from which the entire Town of Pittsford is funded.  In addition, this information is useful to many, including townspeople, assessors, lawyers, real estate agents, the zoning administrator, planning board, town clerk, neighboring towns, and state employees.  We enjoy the challenge of maintaining fair and accurate records and try to be helpful whenever we are asked for assistance. Several times a year we attend classes and conferences.

Thank you to all Pittsford Property owners for your feedback and constructive involvement during the Grievance period; we appreciate your input. 

Linda Trask, Listers' secretary, will be in the Listers' Office Monday through Thursday from 9 AM to 1 PM.  The telephone number is 483-6500 ext.15.

Listers Barbara Pierce and Jack Rogers, Sr.

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

Review of Winter Sand/Gravel Bids

Discussion was held with regard to the winter sand/gravel bids received from three bidders:  Casella Construction, Inc., Markowski Excavating Inc., and Florence Crushed Stone.  S. Erickson (through the Town Manager) requested that the Board consider a 60/40% mix of winter sand from Markowski Excavating and Florence Crushed Stone.

T. Hooker made a motion to award Markowski Excavating Inc. the bid for 1200 yds of winter sand delivered for $10.88/yard and Florence Crushed Stone 800 yds. of winter sand to be picked up as needed by Town trucks for $11.40/yard.  J. Gagnon seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

J. Gagnon made a motion to award Casella Construction, Inc. the crushed gravel bid for approximately 2,700 yards delivered at $12.30 per yard for 1-1/2" crushed gravel and $12.85 per yard for 3/4" crushed gravel.  A. Hitchcock seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

  

FY08 Year End Status Report

As of August 1, 2008, the General Fund appears to have closed the fiscal year with a surplus of approximately $125,000.00 and the Highway Fund appears to be in surplus in the approximate amount of $30,000.00.

 

Application for Certification of Approval for Location of a Junkyard-R. Brown Salvage

The Agency of Transportation renewal for certification of approval for the location of a junkyard - Keith's Salvage dba R. Brown Salvage needs approval for the Select Board for 3 years.  Discussion was held with regard to the prior restrictions. A. Hitchcock made a motion to accept the certificate of approval for location of a junkyard for R. Brown Salvage subject to the same conditions and same location as the previous permit.  A. Hitchcock requested that the Zoning Administrator review compliance for applicable regulations.  J. Gagnon seconded the motion. The motion was passed unanimously.

 

Review Proposed Contract for Clearlane Purchases for Winter Season

J. Haverstock updated the Board on the disappointing results of efforts by the Rutland Region Transportation Council and VLCT to assure reasonably priced and reliable supplies of road salt for the winter.  Because no competitive bids were generated by either initiative, J. Haverstock presented the Cargill, Inc.- proposed contract for Clearlane purchases for the FY08/09 winter season.  Cargill, Inc. proposed for 1100 tons the price of $67.25 per ton delivered.  Last year the price was $60.81/ton delivered. The new price represents an increase of $7,106.00 over last year.  The supply is not guaranteed. T. Hooker made a motion to accept Cargill's proposal for Clearlane at $67.25 per ton delivered FY08/09.  A. Hitchcock seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

 

Application for Access/Right of Way Permit-Jay Mayer

J. Gagnon made a motion to approve the application for Access/Right of Way for Jay Mayer with the requirements listed by Shawn Erickson to install a 20" diameter culvert.  The driveway grade needs to slope down away from the Town highway so water does not run into the Town highway.  T. Hooker seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

 

Adoption of Drug/Alcohol Policy

VLCT has provided to the Town a model for a Drug/Alcohol Policy as a proposed policy to be considered by the Select Board.  Discussion was held with regard to the need for such a policy in light of the Town's Union Contract.  J. Haverstock pointed out the possible insurance benefit for the Town by adopting this policy.  Further discussion will be held at the next Board meeting on August 20, 2008.

 

Survey on Garage/Storage Space Needs

J. Haverstock reported the requests from the Town departments generated by the survey he distributed concerning garage/storage needs.  The Water Department, which has supplied the $26,000.00 already earmarked for the proposed garage/storage project, has need for a garage bay for its truck and for additional storage spaces for its large quantity of tools and equipment.  Bruce Babcock also needs office space, equipped with a computer, internet access, and phone.  If the Town were to approve all the department requests, the resulting building would feature five large garage bays, storage space, and office space for B. Babcock.  The Board asked J. Haverstock to review the requests and prioritize them to fit the budget of $26,000.

Additional projects that the Board discussed were the overdue replacement of the Municipal Office roof and installation of the fire door on the basement vault at the office.

 

Appointment of Town Manager as Town's Delegate to Annual VLCT Business Meeting

Allen Hitchcock made a motion to appoint John Haverstock, Town Manager, as the Town's delegate to the Annual VLCT Business Meeting on October 2, 2008 in Killington, VT.  T. Hooker seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

 

Asphalt Prices

Pike Industries, Inc. sent a letter to the Town declaring "Force Majeure" (Beyond their control/Act of God) with regard to rising oil costs and shortages in supplies of liquid asphalt.  The impact is uncertainty of supply/cost for Hitchcock Road and West Creek Road projects.  J. Haverstock met with representatives from Pike Industries, Inc. today at which time they presented new prices for the already contracted work.

The new amounts from Pike are at $69.21/ton:  Hitchcock Road at $107,137.08 and W. Creek Road at $96,963.21.  The original accepted bid price on May 19, 2008 was $58.53/ton.  Wilk Paving sent a fax with a revised bid of $222,164.65 for the two projects. D & F Paving is too busy with other work already in progress to work to consider Hitchcock Road which is ready for the Town to start now.  D & F Paving may be able to submit a revised bid on W. Creek Road for the fall.

Discussion was held with regard to the two projects.  The Board asked J. Haverstock to review the contract with Pike Industries, Inc. with the Town lawyer and report back to the Board at the next meeting.

 

Highway Weight Limits

Discussion was held with regard to a VLCT initiative to petition the State/Federal governments to waive the State's 80,000 pound weight restrictions for trucks traveling on interstate highways.  The consensus of the Board was to support the Governor's petition to waive the weight limits.  It is hoped such an effort might reduce the volume of trucking on town roads.

 

Allen Hitchcock made a motion to go into Executive Session to discuss matters in Personnel, Litigation, and Contracts.   Thomas Hooker seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.  J. Haverstock was asked to stay.

 

EXECUTIVE SESSION

In accordance with 1VSA 312(b) where premature general public knowledge would clearly place the Municipality or person involved at a substantial disadvantage, the Board unanimously agreed to go into Executive Session for Personnel, Litigation, and Contracts at 8:08 PM. The Board came out of Executive Session at 8:30 PM.
No action taken.

Without any further business, the meeting was adjourned at 8:30 PM.

Respectfully submitted:                   

Linda Drummond, Recording Clerk

Thomas "Hank" Pelkey, Chair

Allen Hitchcock, Vice-Chair

W. Joseph Gagnon, Selectman

David Markowski, Selectman - ABSENT

Thomas Hooker, Selectman

 



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