TOWN OF RUTLAND
Board members present: Stanley Rhodes III, Steve Hawley, Joe Dicton, Don Chioffi and John Paul Faignant
The Meeting opened at 7:40 P.M.
All rose for the Pledge of Allegiance to the United States Flag.
The Board reviewed the minutes of June 4, 2013. The following changes were suggested:
Page 1- Mr. Hawley said the minutes should be changed to state that Mr. Chioffi said the date should be May 23rd and not April
Page 2- Mr. Hawley said the minutes should be changed to state the number $4,470.00 should read $44,700.00
Page 1- Mr. Chioffi said the minutes should be changed to state the Board reviewed the minutes of May 23rd
# 7 in the packet- Mr. Chioffi said the minutes should be changed to state he believed he said, that “it was unmistakeably clear to him”.The matter was discussed and it was decided not to change the original statement in the minutes.
Page 2- Mr. Chioffi said the minutes should be changed to state the entire Board has been elected to represent the Town.
Page 2- Mr. Chioffi said the minutes should be changed to state “wants the public to know”.
Page 3- Mr. Chioffi said the minutes should be changed to state “raised” a question.
Page 5- Mr. Chioffi said the minutes should be changed to state “ rather than renew the permit they choose to let the permit lapse”
Page 2 – Mr. Faignant said the minutes should be changed to state he voted in the positive and not the negative on his own motion.
Mr. Dicton made a motion to accept the minutes corrected. Mr. Hawley made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Rhodes said the Board would be going into executive session to discuss the the TJP stipulation and land and building settlement. Mr. Hawley moved to go into executive session 6:51 P.M. with attorney Stacy Chapman to discuss the TJP proposed tax settlement. Mr. Dicton made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
The Board came out of executive session at 7:12 P.M. and took no action.
Clerk& Treasurer: Ms. Marie Hyjek reported:
Requested the Board meet on Monday July 1st rather than Tuesday July 2nd due to the Holiday on Thursday. Ms. Hyjek said if the Board meets on July 2nd then payroll would not be ready until Friday rather than Thursday. Mr. Dicton, Mr. Rhodes and Mr. Chioffi said they could make the July 1st meeting.
Told the Board she needs all bills turned in by Thursday the 27th.
The office is closed on July
4th. Fireworks are scheduled for July
Transportation Council & SWAC: Mr. Charles Shields reported:
Cited H262 regarding the collection of
Town Road Commissioner: Mr. Byron Hathaway reported:
Will complete roadside mowing tomorrow. The tractor will then go to Clarendon for a few weeks.
Road shoulder work is progressing.
Informed the Board he would be on vacation from Thursday to the end of the month.
Reported to the Board regarding
Quarterline Road paving options. Mr. Hathaway said if the road width is kept
at 18 feet and is not increased to 20 feet it would greatly reduce the amount
of construction and tree cutting. Mr. Hathaway said several residents a long
the road would like the tree cutting to be as minimal as possible.
He said if pavement were 18 feet, a minimum amount of ditching would need to be done and a few driveway culverts would be involved. He said the cost would be about $37,000.00. Mr. Hathaway said if the road is widened to 20 feet the project cost would go up drastically.
Mr. Rhodes questioned if the Town would have problems in the future if a narrower road were to be built. Mr. Hathaway said he can not foresee any major problems with a narrower road (18 feet wide verses 20 feet wide). Mr. Hathaway said 18 feet is two nine foot travel lanes.
Mr. Chioffi asked if the road would end in a cul-de-sac. Mr. Hathaway said there would not be a cul-de-sac. Mr. Hawley said the road goes straight through. Mr. Hathaway recommended that a turn around or a cul-de-sac not be built since they would attract people to throw away garbage.
Mr. Hathaway said the proposed improvement would stop 700 feet from the Clarendon line. Mr. Rhodes said individuals purchasing lots in the future, on the unpaved portion, will ask for the paved road to be extended to their lot. Mr. Hathaway said a 20 foot wide road would result in the loss of many more trees and more culvert and ditching work.
Mr. Rhodes questioned how the Board
can consider a substandard road when the Board is making developers build
roads to Town specifications. Mr. Dicton said he agreed with Mr.
Mr. Hawley recalled the site visit to the Quaterline Road, when upgrading the road from class four to class three, where the residents said they did not want major changes made to the road. Mr. Chioffi said if it is a Town road it ought to be paved. Mr. Faignant said by not complying with the Town standard it is like saying “ do as I say and not as I do”. Mr. Rhodes said he agrees with Mr. Faignant.
Mr. Hathaway will estimate project cost for a 20 foot wide road and report back to the Board. Mr. Rhodes said building a 20 foot wide road might change the residents mind regarding road improvements.
Planning Commission: Mr. William Matteson reported:
The Commission recently reviewed a two lot sketch plan application. Mr. Matteson told the Board the applicant has decided not to go forward with the subdivision because of State requirements.
Inquired as to the status of Zoning.
Mr. Rhodes said the last meeting was a long time ago. He said the document was
given to Mr. Faignant who was going to wrap it up and give it back to the
Board. Mr. Faignant said he could not remember. Mr. Zingale will research the
status of the zoning regulation adoption process and report back to the
Captain Ted Washburn & Chief Ed Dumas reported:
Mr. Rhodes requested that future reports from Mr. Washburn be submitted to Mr. Zingale for inclusion in the Board's packet.
From May 30 to June 13 there were 14 calls for service
133 calls for the year
Types of calls: motor vehicle complaints, directed patrols, animal problems, suspicious person, burglar alarms, untimely dead body and a 911 hang-up.
All 14 cases have been closed out
No arrests, 10 motor vehicle stops 4 tickets issued, six warnings
$733.00 in fines were issued
48 hours were spent on the road patrolling
1.5 hours were used for administrative paperwork.
Thanked Ms. Hyjek for getting the door locks changed.
Mr. Chioffi cited the fact the Police Office is kept locked and that there are two keys and a key in the lock box. Mr. Faignant said there would be three keys. He said there would be one key for each police officer and one for the Town Constable.
Recreation Director: Mr. Mike Rowe reported:
Thanked Mr. Twitters and Garden Time for donating flowers to the Town Recreation Department.
Said the hand-capped lift and the diving board would be installed on Thursday.
The pool is up and running.
Individuals can register for swimming lessons at the Town pool.
Baseball is wrapping up.
The Board and Mr. Rowe discussed the purchase of a new lawnmower. Mr.
Dicton said the proposed lawnmower is an excellent commercial mower that will
serve the Town well.
Mr. Rowe said the mower would cost $ 8,000.00 Ms. Hyjek said there is $ 96,000.00 in the depreciation fund. Mr. Rhodes said the purchase should come from the depreciation fund. Mr. Chioffi agreed with Mr. Rhodes.
Mr. Faignant said the Board is
perpetuating a fiction in that every year the Board asks for a budget to be
passed and we end up turning over part of that budget at the end of the year to
saving taxes. He said it suggest we don't have a fine enough pencil for our
budget or we like the fiction we are
not spending what we budgeted for because we are able to return the same amount
every year. He said it would be appropriate to use the depreciation fund. Mr.
Faignant cited the fact there is surplus money available in the
Mr. Faignant said when you have the same surplus for more than two or three years you have to put a sharper point on your pencil, because it is really a fiction. The Board discussed the matter further. Mr. Dicton made a motion to support Mr. Rowe's efforts in gaining a new mower with the funds available to him in the current budget. Mr. Faignant made a second to the motion. There was much discussion. The motion failed by a vote of 2 to 3. Mr. Rhodes, Mr. Hawley and Mr. Chioffi voted in the negative.
Mr. Hawley made a motion to take the money from the depreciation fund for the new lawnmower we need at the Recreation department. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. There was discussion. Mr. Rhodes said the price would be $7,820.00. The motion passed unanimously.
Town Administrator: Mr. Joseph Zingale reported:
Informed the Board that the Sheriff's
Department wants the Board to hold a vicious dog hearing regarding a dog owned
by a Simons Avenue resident. Mr. Dicton said the Town's Police Department
should have received the complaint and reviewed it before it hit the Board's
desks. Mr. Zingale said he sent the information to the Board because the Board
administers the Dog ordinance.
Mr. Rhodes said as Health Officer he was not informed that the dog has bitten individuals. Mr. Faignant said the Town Police should be copied on such matters in the future.
Mr. Faignant moved to schedule a hearing as requested. Mr. Chioffi made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously. The hearing will be scheduled for July 16th.
Informed the Board that several water meters in the Flory Heights should be replaced due to chronic problem. Mr. Zingale will get a price for replacing five meters and report back to the Board.
Told the Board that a Elbern Avenue resident would like the Town to remove a tree stump from the road R-O-W. Mr. Hathaway explained that he had been requested to take the tree down but did not because the tree was not dead. He said the landowner had the tree cut down and now wants the Town to remove the stump. The Board discussed the matter and took no action.
Informed the Board that a sales representative from Small Dog Electronics would like to meet with the Board regarding the Board purchasing I pads for their use. Mr. Zingale will schedule the individual for the July 30th meeting.
The Board reviewed packet correspondence.
Mr. Chioffi thanked the Board for the letter which Mr. Brown sent to the PSB regarding the Knappmiller solar proposal. Mr. Faignant questioned how the letter was generated and why. He said he does not remember the Board authorizing such a letter. Mr. Dicton said the Board was in the discussion phase about it (the solar farm). Mr. Dicton and Mr. Faignant said the Board took no action.
Mr. Rhodes said he was going to follow the Johnsons. He said if they (the Johnsons)are not happy with it (the solar farm) then he is not happy because they are the ones that have to look at it. Mr. Rhodes said the last time we discussed it we found out they were good with it so that was it.
Mr. Faignant said the Board has a bigger responsibility. He said this is the first time this kind of system is being proposed for the Town and he said he is sure there are many residents that would not want to see a project like this appear right next door to them. He said they would have to look at it every day.
Mr. Faignant, Mr. Rhodes and Mr. Dicton expressed their displeasure with the letter sent by Town Attorney Mr. Kevin Brown to the Public Service Board regarding the Knappmiller Solar Farm application. Mr. Chioffi said he he had no problem with the letter.
Mr. Faignant said the Board has an obligation to monitor the application and educate themselves as to the process. Mr. Faignant said the Board had the discussion two weeks ago and specifically did not do anything. He said we wanted it to continue with the appearance of our attorney and him getting copies of any and all pleadings filed. He said it would be sent to Mr. Zingale and the Board.
Mr. Faignant said the letter from Mr. Brown would interrupt the information flow as the Board had specified two weeks earlier. Mr. Faignant said he does not believe the letter was authorized by the Board. Mr. Rhodes and Mr. Dicton agreed with Mr. Faignant. Mr. Faignant said the Brown letter contradicts the Board's previous action to monitor the process and receive information as it is generated.
Mr. Chioffi cited the fact that the Board discussed whether it was just looking for information or put an appearance in for the Town. Mr. Chioffi said the Board had not voted to put in an appearance for the Town.
Mr. Faignant said the Town did vote to put in an appearance for the Town. Mr. Chioffi disagreed with Mr. Faignant's recollection. He said the Board decided to do exactly what Mr. Brown was doing. He said the letter contradicts the Board's previous action.
Mr. Faignant again inquired as to who authorized the letter from Mr. Brown.
Mr. Faignant questioned how the Board could support or oppose the application until the Board gets the information that tells the Board what it (the application) is. Mr. Faignant said the Board never took a position on the project.
Mr. Zingale read the second paragraph in Mr. Brown's letter. Mr. Rhodes said the Board never took a position not to oppose it (the solar farm).
Mr. Faignant said the Board wishes to be more than kept informed of the progress of the application. He said the Board wants to participate in the application process so that the Board will get contemporaneous mailings like everybody else. Mr. Zingale said that is what the second paragraph in Mr. Brown's letter states. Mr. Zingale said nothing will happen unless someone requests a hearing. He cited the fact that neither the Select Board, Planning Commission, the Johnsons, the Gawets or the abutter in West Rutland has requested a hearing.
Mr. Faignant said he understands the project has undergone several revisions and supplemental information has been submitted to the Public Service Board, which the Board has not seen.
Mr. Zingale said he does not believe Mr. Faignant is correct. Mr. Zingale said the Town received the information which Mr. Faignant cited. He said it was placed on the Board's desks. Mr. Zingale said the additional information was a map of the solar field and the distance to the Johnson's home. He said he gave the information to the Board over a month earlier.
Mr. Faignant said “ hey Joe I do not intend engage in a debate with you about what my intentions are and what information I would like to receive and when I would like to receive it.” Mr. Faignant said he was having a discussion with the Board and trying to find out who authorized Kevin Brown to send a letter stating the Town does not oppose the project. And what I am hearing is that we don't have any source for that authority.
Mr. Faignant asked Mr. Zingale what was Mr. Brown's authority to send the letter. Mr. Zingale said he did not know. That's the answer to my question, Mr. Faignant replied.
Mr. Zingale said he spoke up because no one on the Board knows why the letter was written. Mr. Zingale said that was the reason he spoke up. He said if Mr. Faignant wants him to shut-up he would be happy to do so.
Mr. Faignant said “ hey Joe, don't let me have a public discussion with you about the way we address each other”. Mr. Faignant said he wants Mr. Zingale to speak in a civilized manner so the public watching gets the impression we're a user friendly government. “What I don't want is you jumping down my throat when I am asking questions about a project I think we need to be informed about”, Mr. Faignant stated.
Mr. Faignant said Mr. Zingale does not know the answer. He said Mr. Zingale does not know why Mr. Brown put it in the letter. Mr. Zingale said there is nothing to oppose because there is no hearing.
Mr. Zingale said only the Select Board, the Planning Commission, the Johnsons, the Gawets or the Jagazinski have asked for a hearing and that no hearing has been requested. Mr. Zingale said Mr. Brown's letter is consistent with keeping the Town posted on everything and that the Town is not taking a position. Mr. Faignant said the letter states the Town does not oppose it. He said that decision has not been made as a Board.
Mr. Chioffi said if the Town were going to oppose the project then the Board should have voted to do so and entered the process prior to the expiration of the date. Mr. Chioffi said the deadline for opposing the project has passed.
Mr. Faignant said if they make any changes to the project that would reopen a comment period. Mr. Chioffi said when he questioned Mr. Faignant and other Board members regarding the proposal was that the Board wants to be informed. He said being informed and having the right to oppose it are two different things.
Mr. Chioffi said that if there is still time then the Board should vote on whether to request a hearing. Mr. Chioffi said the 2nd paragraph in the letter clearly states the Town wants to be kept informed.
Mr. Rhodes said the first sentence in the letter should have said the Board has not taken a position. Mr. Faignant said, “that’s my whole point, I don't think that 1st sentence was authorized.” Mr. Rhodes said the Board can't take a position until it has all the information.
Mr. Dicton said “ somebody had to tell our counsel our position”. Mr. Hawley said not necessarily. Mr. Faignant made a motion to instruct Mr. Brown to revise his letter to Susan Hudson, the clerk of the Public Service Board and just inform them that we have not taken a position as of this date. Mr. Dicton made a second to the motion. There was more discussion. Mr. Matteson told the Board that participating in projects as they come up is going to be an uphill battle. Mr. Matteson said the State Legislature has set it up so people can do pretty much what they want. He said there is nothing the Town can do about it. Mr. Matteson said the Town should get involved
The motion passed by a vote of 4 to 1. Mr. Chioffi voted in the negative.
The Board discussed assessing a fee for returning ticket revenue to the City of Rutland. Mr. Chioffi made a motion to pay $1,950.00. Mr. Faignant made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Chioffi questioned Captain Washburn regarding a meeting with Mendon officials pertaining to the Townline Road/Killington Ave intersection. Captain Washburn said the Mendon Constable informed him that 90% of the accidents were alcohol related. He said Mendon would be adding reflective tape to the Stop signs. Captain Washburn said a higher presence of law enforcement could resolve the matter rather than doing a big survey.
Mr. Hathaway will paint stop bars on two of the three stop sign locations.
The Board discussed the water line service to the Fire Station and took no action.
Mr. Chioffi said the Board should discuss eliminating a sewer line easement on the Johnson Energy property before getting too far into the construction of the new station.
Regional Planning Commission Mr. Fred Nicholson reported:
Fire Chief: Mr. Joseph Denardo reported:
Mr. Faignant moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:40 P.M. Mr. Hawley made a second to the motion. The motion passed unanimously.