Town of Pittsford, Vermont

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Town of Pittsford Select Board Meeting

November 4, 2009    

The meeting was called to order at 6:30PM by Thomas "Hank" Pelkey, Chairman.   

Select Board members present:  Margaret "Peg" Flory, Joseph Gagnon, Thomas "Hank" Pelkey, Allen Hitchcock, and Thomas Hooker. 

Also present:  Bruce Paynter, Linda Weeden, Tom Carrara, John Haverstock and Kelly Giard, Recording Secretary

 

MINUTES

The minutes from the October 24, 2009 meeting were reviewed and signed with no corrections.  

 

ORDERS

The orders of $65,949.10 and $7,866.00 (General Fund) and $9,181.35 were approved and signed following discussion as stated below:

A. Hitchcock inquired about the amount paid for the Fire Department phone.  T. Hooker explained that this was the charge for the back-up phone system.

A. Hitchcock inquired about the expense for legal fees for the Water Project.  J. Haverstock indicated that these were for easements.

J. Gagnon inquired why there was an expense for $200 for topsoil.  J. Haverstock will research and advise at a future meeting.  J. Gagnon indicated that earlier in the year some topsoil was screened for use and it is rare to purchase topsoil.

 

TOWN MANAGER'S REPORT

J. Haverstock reported on the following:

  • The water project is experiencing some boring obstacles.  J. Haverstock explained that a Change Order has been signed and that the boring under Route 7.  AOT has approved the new path to be bored under Route 7.  Additional tests will be performed to evaluate the composition of material beneath Otter Creek.  The first monthly Accounts Payable meeting involving Carl Crawford, Markowski Excavating representatives, Linda Drummond, John Haverstock and Denise Mahoney will occur on November 10, 2009 at 2:00 PM.  The Select Board and Water Commission members are invited to attend.
  • The Planning Commission will be holding a Public Hearing on November 19, 2009 for the purpose of Town Plan review. 
  • Kendall Hill Road Bridge is being sealed.  The Fire Department cleaned the decking for this to occur.  Portable traffic signals have been rented to help with traffic control.  It is anticipated that the bridge will reopen, with all signage and traffic control removed by Friday, November 6.
  • The vault door arrived and has been installed in the basement.  The Highway crew unloaded and positioned the door for installation.  A. Hitchcock expressed that there should be some planning done as to what will be stored in the vault.
  • J. Haverstock reported that the Historical Society will assess the books that are being stored in the basement to develop a plan to remove them.
  • The timber sales were discussed.  There was a tour on October 30 conducted by County Forester, Eric Hansen.  J. Haverstock reported that Mr. Hansen indicated that there may have been some "under marking" done as the original marking occurred in full foliage.  Mr. Hansen indicated that there was possibly as much as 20% "under marked".  The bids for this section are due on November 13.  There were 11 participants in the tour and 10 took the necessary forms.  The Caverly sale tour is scheduled for November 6.  The bids for this section are due on November 20.
  • David Chapman has been hired as the Custodian for the Town Offices. 
  • Bob Harrigan, representing Markowski Excavating, has assessed the lower ball field at the Rec. Area.  A "rough budget" was included in the packets for review.  Randy Adams will discuss this issue in further detail at the November 18 meeting.
  • J. Haverstock reported on the auditors' preliminary findings. J. Haverstock explained that an error occurred causing the tax rates being set based on the total budget figures that were indicated in the Town Report, and not based on the "amount to be raised by taxes" figure.  This error has resulted in a "surplus" tax collection of roughly $350,000.   There was much discussion concerning this error.  J. Haverstock explained the timeline of the budget process.  The funds affected the revenues for FY2008-2009.  M. Flory asked that the Article Warnings concerning the funds be read from the Town Report. The excess revenues generated through this error may be returned to the taxpayers through reduction of taxes, based on an Article to be voted on at Town Meeting 2010.  J. Haverstock reported that steps are being taken to be sure that such an error does not recur.  M. Flory inquired if any figures were available to determine what the tax rate would have been had there been no error.  L. Weeden inquired where the money is currently.  J. Haverstock reported that the money is in an account and collecting a small amount of interest.  T. Pelkey and A. Hitchcock thanked J. Haverstock for the report and explanation.  T. Carrara inquired about the timing of the error.  J. Haverstock explained the timing and there was more discussion.    

 

PUBLIC COMMENT

L. Weeden inquired if there would be a Community sand pile available.  J. Haverstock will research and advise.  T. Hooker indicated that he has seen a large dump truck, which is not the property of the town, parked in the location of the sand pile.

 

L. Weeden inquired why the current police cruiser is in need of so many repairs.  There was discussion that Mr. Carter is not the mechanic, and takes the vehicle to G. Stone Motors in Middlebury for maintenance.  Mr. Carter will be present at the November 18 meeting for further discussion.

 

T. Carrara inquired whether the Davis Bacon Act Rules are being followed with regard to the current water project.  J. Haverstock reported that he has spoken with Carl Crawford and Mr. Crawford is obtaining the information to be sure that all rules are being obeyed.

 

T. Carrara inquired whether there has been a size determined for the new municipal garage.  T. Pelkey and T. Hooker are expected to be working on this project in the near future. 

 

T. Carrara inquired whether the Town is still trying to purchase the grader from the Town of Killington.  J. Haverstock reported that Killington may not be selling their used grader due to the prices of the new equipment.    

 

OLD BUSINESS

Continued Discussion of Police Cruisers:

Tabled until November 18, 2009 meeting.

 

Telemark Water Service Connection:

J. Haverstock reported that Telemark has been given until spring to install the required sprinklers.  Bruce Babcock will oversee the project with regard to school traffic coordination and will bill accordingly for any traffic-related costs.

 

Various Location Tour:

A tour was originally scheduled for Friday, October 30, 2009 for the Kendrick Dam, the Highway Garage Office renovation project, Depot Hill erosion, and the Recreation Field drainage.  J. Haverstock reported that there may be some funds available from the Youth Conservation Corps for 2010.  The tour was rescheduled for November 13, 2009 at 2:30 PM.  T. Pelkey would also like to add the storage building at the Wastewater Treatment Facility.  T. Pelkey indicated that the storage building may be able to house Bruce Babcock's vehicle.  Depending on the structural columns, a larger overhead door may be able to be installed.  In the event of this building retrofitting, the proposed garage may be decreased in size.

 

Other Old Business:

M. Flory indicated that the Rutland Transportation Council is compiling a list of any bridge projects over 20 feet.  This list will be submitted to the State for consideration.  A copy of the request has been included in the packet and Shawn Erickson has been contacted for any input.

 

M. Flory advised that the Route 7 north segment 3 has begun construction.  Currently, segment 5 has all permits in place and construction will begin in roughly one year.  The various segments and their construction schedules were discussed.  The Brandon village segment may be done before other segments, as Brandon "owns"this section of road.

 

A. Hitchcock inquired the maintenance of Route 7 through the village, as information was included in the packets.  J. Haverstock indicated that this information has not been explained from the State level and may be coming from the Water & Sewer project that is in the works.  There was discussion concerning this and it was decided to table the topic.

 

T. Carrara indicated that Proctor plows Route 3.  Mr. Carrara inquired if there was a possibility of disposing of the bagger.  T. Pelkey indicated that the bagger issue will be reviewed.  A. Hitchcock indicated that the bagger building is in need of more storage space.  J. Haverstock reported that he has spoken with vendors at the recent VLCT Fair with regard to marketing this piece of equipment for sale.

 

T. Carrara inquired if there is a "high speed chase policy" in place, as there was a chase through Town recently.  Members believe there is such a policy in place.  J. Haverstock indicated that he will research and discuss the policy with Mr. Carrara.

 

NEW BUSINESS 

 

Budget Preparation Status Report:

J. Haverstock reported that Randy Adams and Shawn Erickson will be present at the November 18, 2009 meeting with their departmental budget presentations.

 

West Road, Chittenden:

There was discussion concerning the maintenance of the West Road Extension in Chittenden.  The property is above the property owned by Michelle and David Parker.  The water vehicles drive this stretch of road roughly 3 times a week to access the springs.  J. Haverstock indicated that the details of discussions of a neighbor who maintains the road would be very brief and done in Executive Session.  A. Hitchcock inquired who holds the deed.  J. Haverstock indicated that Pittsford has a Right of Access to this public class 4 road, which Chittenden has no legal obligation to maintain.    M. Flory inquired the tax value in the Town of Chittenden.  J. Haverstock reported that the property is currently in the Current Use Program.  M. Flory recommended that J. Haverstock be in contact with Chittenden to discuss the issue.

 

Recreation Area Drainage Issue:

Information from Markowski Excavating was distributed for review.  This item will be discussed in the future, when Randy Adams is present.  Mr. Adams is anticipating construction after the next baseball season - in the latter half of 2010.

 

OTHER BUSINESS:

None stated at this time.

 

EXECUTIVE SESSION

J. Haverstock reported that there are legal issues pending litigation involving the Town, personnel issues that would be damaging if related in public, and Union contractual issues, thus recommending Executive Session.

 

M. Flory made a motion and seconded by T. Hooker to go into Executive Session for legal issues where premature knowledge would be damaging to the Town, personnel and contractual issues that may be jeopardized by public disclosure at 7:28 PM.   The motion was unanimously passed.  J. Haverstock was invited to stay.

 

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 enter into Executive Session for the purpose of Legal, Contractual, and Personnel at 7:28 PM.

 

Town of Pittsford Select Board Meeting November 4, 2009    

The Select Board came out of Executive Session at 8:00 PM.

M. Flory made a motion and seconded by T. Pelkey that the Town contribute $300 toward legal fees being incurred by VLCT in filing an amicus brief in the Appeal of a Court's ruling in a case with precedential significance for all Vermont towns with wastewater treatment plants, at the request of VLCT.  Motion passed unanimously 5 - 0.

Meeting adjourned at 8:03 PM.

The next meeting will be held on November 18, 2009.

Respectfully Submitted,

 

Kelly Giard, Recording Secretary         

                                                                                     

Thomas "Hank" Pelkey, Chair

Allen Hitchcock, Vice-Chair

W. Joseph Gagnon, Selectman

Thomas Hooker, Selectman

Margaret "Peg" Flory, Selectman

 



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