Members Present – Thomas “Hank” Pelkey, Alicia Malay, David Mills, Thomas Hooker (via Zoom) and W. Joseph Gagnon. Others Present: Charles “Butch” Shaw (via Zoom), Louis Gaudreau, Donna Wilson, Stephanie Jerome (via Zoom), Helen McKinlay, Nancy Gaudreau (via Zoom), Baird Morgan (via Zoom), Beth Saradarian (via Zoom), Lorrie Byrom (via Zoom), Town Manager John Haverstock, Kelly Giard – Recording Secretary.
The meeting was called to order at 6:30 PM by Chairman Alicia Malay.
J. Haverstock stated that there was a need to enter into Executive Session for Legal (law enforcement). Motion by T. Pelkey and seconded by D. Mills to enter into Executive Session for Legal. Motion passed 5 – 0.
J. Haverstock stated that there was no need to amend the agenda. Motion by T. Pelkey and seconded by D. Mills to accept the agenda as posted. Motion passed 5 – 0.
The minutes of the January 6, 2021 meeting were signed, with no corrections.
The orders in the amount of $76,772.85 and Payroll in the amount of $12,901.81 were signed, with the following discussion:
J. Gagnon inquired about the expenses for outfitting the new ladder truck. J. Haverstock explained that the original motion was to allow up to $6,000 to come from the Fire Department’s Capital Fund for outfitting. The remainder will be funded by the Fire Department’s annual budget. T. Hooker stated that there were many pieces of equipment and tools from the retired truck transferred to the new truck.
Town Manager’s Report:
J. Haverstock reported the following:
- Casella Construction has completed the placement of the concrete blocks for the walls of the Salt/Sand structure. The structure is expected to be completed at the end of February.
- A second person has inspected the Town Office mechanical chair lift. The unit is not repairable. The quote for a replacement was included in the packets for review. Grant funding options are being examined. There was discussion regarding the necessity of this unit and there could be ADA compliance concerns. An ADA compliance consultant will be retained to inspect the unit.
- The Hazard Mitigation Team will be submitting their report to the Planning Commission and comments will be accepted by the Select Board on February 3 and February 17, 2021.
- A draft audit has been completed. Chad Hewitt from Sullivan and Powers will be present at a meeting in February to discuss the findings.
- The Depot Hill sewer pump station project is progressing and the completion date is mid February with the seeding and clean up to occur in the spring. The aeration portion of the project at the Wastewater Treatment Facility will proceed in the spring/summer.
- The Dollar General project is moving forward. Their proposal that the Town accept a sliver of Querrey frontage on Plains Road will be discussed at the February 3, 2021 meeting.
- There will be a Staff Meeting on January 28, 2021 at 9:00 AM.
J. Gagnon inquired about the usage of the chair lift. J. Haverstock stated that he would be working with the consultant and develop options. There was also discussion regarding a usage policy for the unit.
Select Board Comments:
Selectman Mills stated that the Rutland Regional Planning Commission met on January 19, 2021 and a letter was submitted to the Corn Hill Road Solar developers stating that there would be no regional impact due to their project. Selectman Mills also stated that he has received information regarding a Personnel issue from a resident of Town which he would like to address at the Select Board’s next meeting. J. Haverstock stated that if the resident would like to submit a written submission about this concern, the members would be able to review it prior to the discussion.
Rep. Charles “Butch” Shaw stated that the chair lift could be an ADA concern due to employee/public accessibility to the basement. Mr. Shaw explained that there may be some grants available and encouraged the Town to apply for these. There may also be some grant funds available to assist with the fencing project at the Recreation area.
The Select Board recessed the regular business at 6:53 PM.
The Select Board convened the Public Hearing for the Pittsford Village Farm Grant Writing Effort at 6:53 PM.
Public Hearing on Pittsford Village Farm Grant Writing Efforts:
Louis Gaudreau presented the drawings and information that the Pittsford Village Farm is proposing for use of the property. Mr. Gaudreau encouraged residents to visit the website pittsfordvillagefarm.org to view the plans and the strategic plan. Mr. Gaudreau was joined by Donna Wilson and together with Nancy Gaudreau, they explained the proposed usages for the interior of the structure, as well as the parking plans for the outside areas. Ms. Wilson explained that the grant is a Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development Planning Grant, which will be awarded in June. The grant covers civil engineering, road work, drainage, electric and administrative costs. This grant requires no financial obligation from the Town and the administrative costs that are covered are for the
Town employees who will be administering and monitoring the grant.
J. Gagnon inquired if this was a privately owned entity. Ms. Wilson explained that this is a non-profit ownership, Pittsford Preservation Corp dba Pittsford Village Farm. J. Gagnon inquired if the Planning Commission has been consulted. Mr. Gaudreau stated that this topic is on the Planning Commission agenda for discussion. Ms. Wilson explained that the grant application requires the funding be funneled through the Town. Mr. Gaudreau stated that the grant application states that the Planning Commission submit a statement that the project meets the Town Plan.
The Select Board adjourned the Public Hearing at 7:08 PM.
The Select Board reconvened regular business at 7:08 PM.
Consider Town Meeting Options and Logistics:
J. Haverstock stated that the Select Board members would need to sign a revised Town Meeting Warning, which does not include the positions of Grand Juror or Town Agent. (The revised Town Meeting Warning is attached to the end of this document) Moderator Kevin Carvey has been notified that there would be no need for a moderator this year. The Select Board will host an informational hearing on March 1, 2021 with voting by Australian Ballot on March 2, 2021. There was discussion regarding the inclusion of a report of delinquent property taxes and utility bills in the Town Report. Motion by T. Pelkey and seconded by D. Mills to not list the delinquencies in the Town Report for this year only due to COVID 19 hardships. Motion passed 4 – 1(Gagnon opposed).
Rep. Shaw stated that the Legislature passed H848, which authorize repayment to towns who expend more than last year to print and send ballots to residents, as well as return postage and tabulator costs, which are related to Town Meeting. The Fire Department has agreed the use of their facility for voting.
Rep. Shaw explained that the Towns will be counting the school votes, however, can not tabulate ballots before the evening of the election. Motion by T. Pelkey and seconded by D. Mills to mail all voters a ballot. Motion passed 5 – 0.
Discuss Humane Society’s Request for a Coin Drop:
Beth Saradarian representing the Rutland County Humane Society was present to request a coin drop to occur on October 9, 2021. Ms. Saradarian stated that, last year, the coin drop netted $4,000 for the shelter. Motion by D. Mills and seconded by J. Gagnon to allow the coin drop on October 9, 2021. Motion passed 5 – 0. Ms. Saradarian stated that she would be submitting a permit application to Chief Warfle and VTrans.
Consider Investing in an Engineering Study for the Eventual Rehabilitation of the Depot Hill Covered Bridge:
T. Hooker recommended that the Town research Historical Preservation grants for the rehabilitation of the Depot Hill covered bridge. J. Haverstock stated that VTrans has placed the Kendall Hill Bridge at 173 and the Depot Hill covered bridge at 196 on the repair priority list. There was discussion concerning the contacting of the Rutland Regional Planning Commission Transportation Committee to lobby for the repairs of the bridge. Rep. Shaw and Rep. Jerome can also be of assistance with VTrans to move the importance of the repairs. D. Mills stated that he stood in the bridge when a vehicle passed and stated that the vehicles need to slow down to preserve the bridge. J. Haverstock stated that he will contact Chief Warfle for speed enforcement and Highway Foreman Chad Eugair for recommendations for slowing traffic. D. Mills inquired if the school bus was still travelling through the bridge to accommodate the one house that has a student. J. Haverstock stated that he would research and report at a future meeting. T. Hooker inquired when the running boards were removed, which also could impact the movement of the bridge. There was discussion concerning the anchoring of the bridge.
Consider Proposal to Amend Village Burning Ordinance:
Fire Warden Bradley Keith submitted an email stating that the current village burning ordinance calls for 10 days in the spring and 10 days in the fall for permitted burning. Mr. Keith would like to propose one weekend per month for a permitted burn. T. Pelkey stated that smoke has been a concern in the past. D. Mills stated that some residents work weekends and have week days that they could burn if necessary. There was discussion of other options. J. Haverstock will consult with Mr. Keith and report back. J. Haverstock stated that Public Hearings would be necessary prior to amending the ordinance.
Consider Appointing Alternate Member of Planning Commission:
J. Haverstock stated that he has recent contact with resident Robb Spensley, who has previously served as the Grand Juror, a position which has been eliminated. Mr. Spensley has expressed interest in serving the Town in another capacity and was interested in serving on the Planning Commission. Motion by T. Hooker and seconded by A. Malay to appoint Robb Spensley as the Alternate member of the Planning Commission. Motion passed 5 – 0.
T. Pelkey made the motion and seconded by D. Mills to go into Executive Session for Legal where premature knowledge would be damaging to the Town and may be jeopardized by public disclosure.
In accordance with 1 VSA 312 (b), where premature general public knowledge would clearly place the Municipality or person involved at a substantial disadvantage, the Board unanimously agreed to enter into Executive Session for the purpose of Legal at 7:46 PM. Town Manager Haverstock was invited to remain for Executive Session.
The Select Board exited Executive Session at 7:57 PM, with no action taken.
The Select Board meeting was adjourned at 7:57 PM.
The next regular meeting of the Select Board will be held on February 3, 2021.
Alicia Malay, Chairman
David Mills, Vice Chairman
Thomas Hooker, Selectman
W. Joseph Gagnon, Selectman
Thomas “Hank” Pelkey, Selectman
BOARD OF SELECTMEN
TOWN OF PITTSFORD, VERMONT
The legal voters of the Town of Pittsford are hereby notified and warned to meet virtually through telephone dial-in and Zoom options (see remote access information, below), on Monday, March 1, 2021 at 6:30 p.m. to hear about and discuss the following matters of Town business:
1. To hear the reports of the Town Officers.
2. To see if the voters of the Town of Pittsford will appropriate the sum of $1,669,369.00 (One Million, Six Hundred Sixty-Nine Thousand, Three Hundred Sixty-Nine and no/100ths Dollars) to defray the General Fund Expenses of the Town for the 2021-2022 fiscal year, of which the sum of $1,283,829.00 (One Million, Two Hundred Eighty-Three Thousand, Eight Hundred Twenty-Nine and no/100ths Dollars) is to be raised by property taxes?
3. To see if the voters of the Town of Pittsford will appropriate the sum of $1,154,770.00 (One Million, One Hundred Fifty-Four Thousand, Seven Hundred Seventy and no/100ths Dollars) to defray the Highway Expenses of the Town for the 2021-2022 fiscal year, of which the sum of $1,015,200.00 (One Million, Fifteen Thousand, Two Hundred and no/100ths Dollars) is to be raised by property taxes?
4. To see if the voters of the Town of Pittsford will appropriate the sum of $16,000.00 (Sixteen Thousand and no/100ths Dollars) to defray the Village District’s Expenses for the 2021-2022 fiscal year, of which the sum of $16,000.00 (Sixteen Thousand and no/100ths Dollars) is to be raised by property taxes payable by Village property owners?
5. To see if the voters will authorize collection of taxes on real and personal property by its Treasurer in three equal installments, due on or before August 12, September 9 and November 12, 2021?
After the close of the above discussions, the legal voters of the Town of Pittsford shall have the opportunity on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. to vote at the Fire Station (located at 150 Pleasant Street, Pittsford), by Australian ballot, on Articles 2 through 5, above, and on the following matters, to wit:
6. To elect the following officers of the Town:
a. Town Moderator for a term of one (1) year
b. A Selectman for a term of three (3) years
c. A Selectman for a term of two (2) years
d. A Trustee of Public Funds for a term of three (3) years
e. A Trustee of Public Funds for the remaining one (1) year of a three-year term
f. One MacLure Library Trustee for a term of one (1) year
Dated at Pittsford, Vermont on the 20th day of January, 2021.
S/s Alicia Malay, Chair
S/s David Mills, Vice Chair
S/s Thomas “Hank” Pelkey
S/s Thomas Hooker, Selectman
S/s Joseph Gagnon, Selectman
Received and recorded on this 21st day of January, 2021.
S/s Helen E. McKinlay, Pittsford Town Clerk
For audio access to the Informational Meeting by telephone, dial (929) 205 6099 and then Confirm by hitting pound. Then, when prompted to enter participant ID, just hit pound again to enter meeting).
For video access to the Informational Meeting, use Zoom application ((This Option is only available if you have a computer with a built-in or external camera and microphone (Zoom software download required) OR you have a phone with a built-in camera Zoom App download required)) https://www.Zoom.us Meeting ID (652 103 6395)