Town of Pittsford, Vermont

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Town of Pittsford Select Board Meeting

July 19, 2006

Thomas “Hank” Pelkey opened the meeting at 6:30 p.m.  Select Board members present were:  Thomas “Hank” Pelkey, Joseph Gagnon, Allen Hitchcock, David Markowski, and Thomas Hooker.  Also present were Michael Balch, Linda Drummond, and Tom Carrara.  Odell Johnston arrived at 6:50 PM, Dick White and Chuk Pitts at 6:55 PM, and David Lacy at 7:00PM.  Randal Adams arrived at 8:00PM.


The Amended Select Board minutes of June 7, 2006 were reviewed, discussed, and approved.

The Select Board minutes of June 20, 2006 were reviewed, discussed, and approved.   


The orders of July 19, 2006 were reviewed, discussed and approved.


Mike Balch reported on the following:

The Town has received and recorded the deed for the Pittsford Commons pumping station.  Gary Kupferer took care of this for the Town.

Representatives of the Lemon Fair and Brandon/Leicester mosquito districts stopped into the Town Office on July 17, 2006 and would like to meet with the Select Board to discuss mosquito spraying for next year.  The Board would like to meet with the representatives at the next Select Board meeting on August 2, 2006.

All of the Stormwater Discharge Sewer inspections have been completed with finding 4 sewer accounts that will be charged the regular sewer fee and 3 accounts which will be charged the stormwater surcharge fee.  There were only 7 locations where stormwater or sump pumps were connected to the sewer drains. Four have been reinspected after the sump pumps were disconnected.  There will be a cross check for any additional sewer users against the new reassessment records.  Discussion was held in regards to identifying any other locations that may be connected to the sewer system but are not being currently charged.

The Select Board expressed their appreciation for a job well done to Bruce Babcock for doing all the inspections and to Linda Drummond for scheduling the appointments and for completing the inspections by the deadline.

M. Balch made the changes requested by the Board to the Employee Discipline Procedure which was presented at the June 20, 2006 Board meeting.  M. Balch will issue this procedure.

A meeting is being scheduled for either August 8th or 9th with the Water Supply Division to discuss upgrades to the Town water systems.  The meeting is to schedule short and long range plans addressing the upgrades to the water systems including financial ramifications.  The Water Supply Division understands that the timing of the Route 7 project is controlled by the State and not Pittsford.  Jay Rutherford, Director of the Water Supply Division, will be chairing the meeting in Waterbury.

CLD Consulting Engineers provided a letter recommending a backyard solution for the Lois Blittersdorf property by connecting that sewer line to the Town sewer by extending the sewer line from the back of the house over land owned by others to an existing sewer manhole.

Discussion was held in regards to financial obligations and hook up responsibilities for the owner and the Town.

M. Balch will be asking Jim Carroll to give him a model lease for the Carpenter property.

Bruce Babcock inspected the properties across from the Library for possible connection of storm drains into the sewer but there were none.

The draft letter regarding the recent Omya legislation was distributed to the Board members for review.

Jenny Parker indicated that she would like to serve as an alternate on the Recreation Committee.


There was no public comment.

The Select Board recessed as the Select Board and convened as the Sewer Board at 6:55 PM.

The Select Board reconvened at 6:58 PM.


Consider Paving Bids

There were 3 bids for the paving which came in as follows for asphalt per ton in place:

Pike Industries $54.03/ton.

Wilk Paving $55.97/ton.

D & F Excav. & Paving $54.85/ton.

D & F is the apparent low bidder.

D. Markowski made a motion to accept D & F Excav. & Paving’s bid at $54.85/ton for asphalt in place 7/1/06 to 6/30/07.  A. Hitchcock seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

Consider appointment of Sally Eugair to Rutland Regional Planning Committee

Allen Hitchcock made a motion to appoint Sally Eugair to be the Town representative to the Rutland Regional Planning Committee through June 30, 2007.  T. Hooker seconded the motion.  The motion passed unanimously.

Consider revision of FY07 Highway work plan-sidewalk

Discussion was held in regards to repairs for the sidewalks on Elm Street (850’) and Route 7 from Keith’s to Elm St.  A. Hitchcock made a motion to repair and repave the sidewalks on Route 7 and Elm Street as discussed FY2007.  D & F Excav. & Paving submitted an estimate for the work:

Shim and overlay Route 7 sidewalk Keith’s to Elm St. $4,750 and Elm Street, new sidewalk 850’ $6,625. M. Balch reported that there is $5,000 in the budget for the sidewalk repairs.  The highway reserve fund could be used for the excess cost if necessary.  T. Hooker seconded the motion.  The motion passed unanimously.

Ratify acceptance of fuel bid

Irving Fuel was the only fixed price fuel bid received for heating oil and propane.  The low sulfur diesel was $0.16 over rack.  H. Pelkey made a motion to accept the Irving Fuel fuel bid.  J. Gagnon seconded the motion.  The motion passed unanimously.

Consider appointment for Jenny Parker as an alternate for the Recreation Committee

T. Hooker made a motion to appoint Jenny Parker as an alternate for the Recreation Committee.

D. Markowski seconded the motion.  The motion passed unanimously.

Consider Fields of Otter Valley request

Dick White, Co-Chairperson for The Fields of Otter Valley, gave a presentation and overview of the Fields of Otter Valley project which include renovating existing fields and creating new fields.

First he apologized for the letter he forwarded to the Board on June 19, 2006 which he received from the Brandon Trustees of Public Funds.  The Trustees of Public Funds requested a response from the Board in regards to a matching contribution up to $7500 for the Fields of Otter Valley by June 30, 2006.

Dick White spoke about the shortage of playing fields at Otter Valley Union High.  460 students participate in field sports, about 60% of the student population.  In the past 8 years, the growth in student participation and the addition of Lacrosse teams to the sports venue, has the players and coaches sharing practice and game space continuously.  There are 145 home games a year with 3 ½ to 4 fields to use for these games.  D. White presented a packet to each of the Board members with  the Phase I financials,  a map of the existing and proposed fields, letter from Otter Valley High School Board of Directors addressed to Friends and Supporters of Otter Valley, and a memo regarding the funds needed for the project.  Other letters of support were included in the packet for the project along with a Donation Card with levels of giving. Many different avenues for fund raising that are in place were reviewed.

Lothrop School Board, Chairman Odell Johnston spoke in support of the project.

J. Gagnon spoke about harvesting more timber to generate more income from the Ballantine property which has 247 acres.  That property is in Vermont Land Trust.  A. Hitchcock spoke about the forestry management that would have to be in place for that property for the timber to be harvested.  A. Hitchcock spoke of the desperate need for more fields to handle the increase in intramural sports and student participation.  Also the need is even greater for gymnasium space.

Lothrop School Board Director David Lacy spoke in support of the project with the increase in middle school involvement in sports and the increased need for field space.

T. Carrara shared his concerns about the $10 million Otter Valley budget.

Lothrop School Board Director Chuk Pitts expressed his concerns in regards to the Burditt Fund.    The Burditt Fund is needed for the maintenance of the Pittsford school buildings and the need to protect its investments.

Discussion was held in regards to grant money that may be available for the project.

The Board thanked Dick White for an informative presentation about The Fields of Otter Valley. H. Pelkey expressed his appreciation for Dick White’s time and that the Board will take The Fields of Otter Valley request for a donation under advisement.

After a brief recess, the Board continued its discussion about the need and expense of athletic fields.  D. Markowski stated that a standard soccer field could cost between $225,000 and $250,000 per field.

Consider Tractor Bids

Randal Adams reviewed the bid process for the compact utility tractor with backhoe option.

The facility management time for the Recreation Area is limited and needs to be as efficient as possible.  Also with more options on the equipment used to maintain the Recreation Area, the ability to become more self-sufficient and versatile will decrease the dependency on other Town departments.  With the growth of two additional fields in the last few years, there is a need for more multi-purpose equipment.  Raking of the diamonds and beach area has been done by hand and the landscape rake would save a great deal of time. 

The bid opening was today, July 19, 2006 with the following results:

Hendy Brothers Inc. bid for a compact tractor John Deere Model2320 24 HP diesel engine, four wheel drive, 200CX loader, 62D drive over mid-mount 62” wide mowing deck including rear ballast box.  Price for landscape rake was not included.  $15,150.00.  The John Deere sub frame mounted Model 46 Backhoe option was $5,150.

Giddings Equipment bid for a compact tractor was for Kubota B7610HSD-F tractor, 24 HP, turf tires w/ballast, folding ROPS, and standard equipment.  Equipped with a mid-mounted Kubota mower and LA352FL-l front loader w/ 4-position valve, 50” bucket and quick attach mount.

$14,900.00.  York Modern MR25, 5’ landscape rake with caster wheels $725.00.  Woods BH6000 backhoe $4900.00 or Kubota B4672 backhoe $6,000. The backhoe is quick release.

R. Adams explained that $18,000 was appropriated in the capital budget spread over 3 years for this equipment.

Tom Carrara complimented Randal Adams and Joe Pomykala on the facility management of the Recreation Area and that it looked as beautiful as a golf course this past weekend when he attended a family reunion held at the Pavilion.  He stated that the residents of Pittsford are fortunate to have such a wonderful facility as part of our community.

T. Hooker made a motion to accept the bid from Giddings for the Kubota compact tractor B7610HSD-F with the York MR25 landscape rake and the Kubota backhoe B4681 for a total of $21,625.00.  A. Hitchcock seconded the motion.  The motion passed unanimously.

R. Adams left at 8:35PM.

Consider draft letter from Board to ANR and Legislature

The Board will review later.


Consider Highway Dept. Structure

M. Balch asked the Board for direction on the possibility of making a change in the Highway Department structure by changing Joe Skaza’s employee status to be differentiated from the other crew members.  Frequently the Highway work crew has been under the supervision of J. Skaza while S. Erickson, Highway Foreman, is involved in the administrative processes of the Highway Department.  One option would be to make J. Skaza a Lead man, with authority to assign and supervise work but referring any personnel issues to the Foreman.  Discussion was held as to the direction the Board felt would be the most appropriate.  The Board will make a decision in regards to any changes in the Highway Department structure at the next Board meeting.

Consider preliminary year end financials

M. Balch reviewed the preliminary year end financials highlighting several areas. In the general fund departments, under Finance, the reappraisal expense of $120,591 will be charged to the reserve account.  Under the Fire Department, there are grant funds to be received of $9,554.

For the general funds, 92.28% is expended on budget.

The Highway Fund was overexpended because of Corn Hill and Orchard Hill which were not in the budget.  Therefore, Class II Highway Main., includes Fire Hill $48,860 not in FY06 and Class III Highway Main. includes Corn & Orchard Hill not in FY06 budget $78,014.  All the money under Bridges was paid for by insurance or grant money except $5,000 funded from budget for Depot Hill and Furnace bridges.  Total Highway Fund was about 91.35% adjusted or $202,049 off budget.  On the Sewer Fund, there is a $20,000 difference on the Debt Service. Green Mountain had related charges of $13,461 which were paid in this fiscal year.  There is unbudgeted Otter Valley revenue of $9,732 for services at the wastewater treatment plant.

Consider FY2007 Property Tax Rates

M. Balch reviewed the figures for calculating the tax rate.  D. Markowski made a motion to set the tax rate of the General Fund at 0.2215/$100; Highway Fund 0.1985/$100; Voter Appropriations 0.0003/$100; and Village Fund 0.0417/$100. A. Hitchcock seconded the motion.  The motion passed unanimously.  The Board committed $30,000 of the June 30, 2005 audited Retained Earnings/Fund Balance to offset the General Fund spending authorization approved at the March 6, 2006 Annual Town Meeting.  Due to the separation of Homestead and Non-Residential property for Education Tax computation, the Town no longer has a single tax rate.  The rates on the individual properties will range between $1.7026 and $1.7475 plus the Village Tax of $0.0417 if applicable.

The Board signed the FY2007 Town Plan Financial form for the Agency of Transportation.

A.     Hitchcock discussed the possibility of changing the site plan review process for the Planning Committee.

There is a need to create a development review board for the zoning issues so the Planning Committee can focus their efforts on the Town Plan.  A. Hitchcock would like to have someone come and do a presentation for the Board explaining how a development review board would benefit Pittsford.

A letter of resignation was given to the Board from the Zoning Board of Adjustment from Gregory Johnson as he is moving to Arizona.  The Board accepted his resignation and thanking him for serving the Pittsford and Florence communities on the Zoning Board.  The vacancy will be posted immediately.

The Board recessed at 8:55 PM to convene as the Liquor Board.

The Board reconvened at 8:58 PM.  No further new business.

H. Pelkey made a motion to go into Executive Session for Legal at 9:00 PM. T. Hooker seconded the motion. The motion was passed unanimously.


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 Legal at 9:01 PM. All others were excused except Michael Balch was asked to stay.   The Board came out of executive session at 9:27 PM.

No action was taken.

Without any further business, the meeting was adjourned at 9:28 PM.

Respectfully submitted:

 Linda Drummond, Recording Clerk

Thomas “Hank” Pelkey, Chair

Allen Hitchcock, Vice-Chair

Dave Markowski, Selectman

W. Joseph Gagnon, Selectman

Thomas Hooker, Selectman





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