Select Board Minutes 3-17-2020




MARCH 17TH, 2020

Out of an abundance of caution around the covid-19 virus, this meeting was held via a conference call line which was made publicly available for anyone to call into.

  • Board members present: Josh Terenzini, Mary Ashcroft, Sharon Russell, Joe Denardo, John Paul Faignant
  • Meeting opened at 6:00 P.M.

Mr. Terenzini opened the meeting and asked for nominations for a Board Chair for this coming year. Mr. Faignant nominated Joshua Terenzini. Ms. Russell seconded the nomination. There were no other nominations. Mr. Terenzini is elected as board chair.

Mr. Terenzini asked for nominations for Board Clerk. Mr. Faignant nominated Mary Ashcroft. Ms. Russell seconded the motion. There were no other nominations. Ms. Ashcroft is elected as board clerk.

Approval of Orders

Mr. Terenzini stated he would prefer to ratify the orders later. Ms. Ashcroft stated she had been to Town Hall to check on their status and they were not ready earlier.  Ms. Ashcroft moved to have each board member sign the orders individually. Mr. Denardo seconded the motion. After some discussion, the motion passed 5-0.

Approval of Select Board Minutes for March 2nd, 2020:

  • Ashcroft moved to approve the minutes. Ms. Russell seconded the motion. The motion passed 4-0 with Mr. Faignant abstaining.

Bill Sweet Administrative Assistant to the Select Board:

  1. Provided an updated list of scheduled meetings and committee agenda items
  2. Reviewed the list of Town officials and term limits for accuracy. Mr. Terenzini had made notes on several positions. The board discussed several of the positions.
    1. The board elected to remove the Energy chair position.
    2. The SWAC representation was updated to reflect Larry Dellveneri as the primary and Bill Bauer as the secondary position. Ms. Ashcroft moved to accept all the appointments included on the second page of the document. Ms. Russell seconded the motion. The motion passed 5-0.
    3. Reviewed the Planning Commission members on page 3. There are 4 which are up for reappointment this year. Planning Commission Chair Ms. Noyes-Pulling is was not available at this meeting. She will be asked to follow up with them.
    4. Reviewed the balance of officials on page 3. Mr. Denardo asked if a change could be made to the appointment to the Regional Ambulance Service board. He asked if Mr. Faignant would be interested in the position. After some discussion, this will be tabled until the next meeting. Ms. Russell moved to approve the appointments of the balance of the list, excluding the Regional Ambulance position. Mr. Denardo seconded the motion. The motion passed 5-0.
  3. Reviewed the 45-day notice received from Otter Creek regarding their application to divide a project. No action was taken, this will be discussed at the next Select Board meeting.
  4. The board discussed the salary for the newly elected Town Clerk. Mr. Faignant moved to approve the proposal sent out by Mr. Terenzini. Mr. Denardo seconded the motion. This proposal is for a salary of $1000 per week until this end of the current fiscal year and then apply the same 3% raise given to all other town employees bringing the salary to $53,560. Ms. Ashcroft discussed keeping the salary the same as it was originally budgeted for. A vote on the motion was taken. Voting in favor was Mr. Faignant, Mr. Denardo, Ms. Russell and Mr. Terenzini. Voting against the motion was Ms. Ashcroft.
  5. Reviewed the current list of committee assignments. Kari Clark replaced Kirsten Hathaway on the committee as the new Town Clerk and Treasurer. No other changes will be made for the upcoming year.
  6. Reviewed information received from VHB in regard to the possibility of finishing the plans which were in progress for the proposed service road on the south end of town. Mr. Denardo commented that this was well more than what was expected. He would like to follow up with VHB and invite them to a future meeting to discuss what the board is looking for.
  7. The board reviewed documentation received from Otter Creek Engineering for awarding the contract to Masterson Excavation for the Randbury Road water line project. Ashcroft had asked if our town attorney has had the opportunity to review it. Mr. Terenzini stated he had spoken with our attorney and he confirmed he has reviewed it. Mr. Denardo moved to approve the award document and authorize Bill Sweet to sign on behalf of the board. Mr. Faignant seconded the motion and it passed 5-0. Otter Creek Engineer also provided a contract for their services relating to the water line. Ms. Ashcroft moved to approve the contract and authorize Bill Sweet to sign on behalf of the board. Mr. Denardo seconded the motion and it passed 5-0.
  8. The board reviewed procedures put in lace by the Town of Mendon in regard to safety of their employees during the covid-19 outbreak. Mr. Terenzini reviewed the steps taken so far by the town including closing Town Hall to the public. The highway, police and fire departments have all put measures in place to protect their members. Mr. Scholtz asked about requests for people to go in on an individual basis. Ms. Clark stated people can call their office and request and appointment. There was a discussion about asking people with symptoms to not come in at all. Mr. Faignant reviewed the effort of maintaining separation by limiting contact.
  9. Reviewed a grant application from the fire department. Mr. Faignant moved to approve the application. Mr. Denardo seconded the motion. Ms. Ashcroft asked if the funds are available. Fire Chief Chris Clark indicated they are available. The motion passed 5-0. The motion was ratified to allow Bill Sweet to sign the application on behalf of the board.
  10. Reviewed supplemental bond coverage from Kinney Pike Insurance. No one could recall the origin of the need for it. There is coverage from VLCT which, according to information received from them, is not bond coverage in name but acts the same. Mr. Denardo brought up coverage for fire department officers who have possession of knox box keys and if coverage from VLCXT extends to them. Mr. Denardo and Mr. Faignant suggested someone looking into this to see if the coverage exists. This topic will be tabled for 2 weeks to allow time to research.
  11. Reviewed a form from Delta dental to add Ms. Clark to the policy as an administrator. Ms. Ashcroft moved to approve the document and authorize Bill Sweet to sign on behalf of the board. Mr. Denardo seconded the motion and it passed 5-0.
  12. Reviewed a form from Peoples United Bank to approve issuing a credit card to Kari Clark. Ms. Ashcroft moved to approve the document and authorize Bill Sweet to sign on behalf of the board. Ms. Russell seconded the motion and it passed 5-0. The card for the previous Town Clerk has been cancelled. The limit on the card for the clerk is $5000.
  13. Discussed the grant application for the sidewalk on Route 7 North. We were called by a member of the review committee. Our application would not be successful as submitted but suggested changing our application to one requesting a scoping study instead of a construction grant. Mr. Faignant moved to approve submitting a request to change the application. Mr. Denardo seconded the motion and it passed 5-0.
  14. Paperwork for the deferred compensation program which was approved at an earlier meeting was received. It will be included in the next packet for the board to review.
  15. Discussed 2 liquor licenses received for approval. One is for Mal Mobil and the other is for Johnny Boys pancake house. Both were reviewed by the Town Police department and there were no issues with either. Ms., Ashcroft moved to approve both applications. Ms. Russell seconded the motion and it passed 5-0.

Kari Clark Rutland Town Clerk/Treasurer:

  1. Terenzini congratulated Kari on her successful campaign and he also thanked the other 3 candidates form running.
  2. Clark said her first week has been an exciting week learning the role as the transitions into the job.
  3. Asked the board members to let her know what they need from her for each meeting.
  4. Requested approval from the Select Board to extend the dog licensing deadline from April 1st to May 1st. Some residents are mailing in license request but there have been many calls looking for information. Mr. Faignant moved to approve extending the dealing to May 1st. Ms. Russell seconded the motion and it passed 5-0.
  5. Ashcroft asked Ms. Clark to report on the status of income and expenditures in the town at least on a monthly basis.

Mike Rowe Rutland Town Recreation Director:

  1. Informed the board that all rec activities have been suspended until further notice. Once school reopens there will be an evaluation of the feasibility of spring sports programs.
  2. Summer maintenance personnel has been secured and work on the parks is expected to start April 1st, if the board approves.
  3. Russell discussed closing Northwood Park to the public for the use of the basketball and tennis courts, the playground and the athletic fields stating being proactive is best. Walking in the park would still be allowed and there would be no effect on the operation of the transfer station. Mr. Faignant agreed with Ms. Russell that closing park activities is best.
    1. Russell moved to close the Northwood park gate and display signage of the closure. Mr. Faignant seconded the motion. Mr. Denardo asked if the gates could be left open and just display signs stating the specifics of the closures. Mr. Rowe commented that state parks are still open and Rutland City has closed their rec buildings but not their parks yet. The vote was taken and the motion failed.
    2. Denardo moved to post signs asking the public to avoid using the parks in large groups in favor of not closing the park totally. Ms. Ashcroft seconded the motion and it passed 5-0. The motion was amended to include Dewey Field as well. Mr. Rowe stated he would take care of getting the signs made.

Byron Hathaway Rutland Town Road Commissioner:

  1. Informed the board that green up day bags are available, which are leftover from last year. They will be made available soon at the transfer station for anyone that wants to start any green up activities early.
  2. Discussed the annual conservation district tree sale which takes place at the Town Highway garage at the end of April. As of now this is still planned to go on but that could change. He will wait until an April meeting to get permission from the board to host it again.
  3. The trees for the new cold storage building have been cut, delivered and milled. Many of the supplies needed are in at the highway garage. Once approval of the Act 250 permit is received. Which is expected soon, construction will begin.
  4. The march 31st meeting is when he plans to have the bids for this paving season ready to review. He is having the address they are sent to changed to the highway garage and summaries will be provided to the board prior to the meeting.
  5. Discussed the request from the Wynnmere homeowner’s association to take over Carmel Place. He suggested the board setup a time to go and visit the site. Ms. Ashcroft stated she would still like to ensure we will get the documents requested from them. Mr. Hathaway stated they are aware of the request to produce it. A date in May will be scheduled for a visit.
  6. The landowner, Mr. Abatiell, has given permission to allow the storm water pond project to move forward.
  7. Informed the board that there is new legislation approved which would allow a tree warden to be appointed who is not a town resident to allow the board to appoint someone with the knowledge needed for the role.
  8. There will be some forms to be signed at the next meeting to go to VTrans.
  9. Thanks Ed Dumas for his help getting the timber for the cold storage building ready.

Chris Clark Rutland Town Fire Chief:

  1. Informed the board that all non-emergency fire department activity is suspended until April 3rd at which time he will reevaluate and see if extending that time is needed.
  2. Two quotes were received for the installation of a water softener system at the McKinley Avenue fire station. The first quote is from Advanced Water Works for $3729.88 and the second is from Aerus of Rutland for $3419.99. Both are appropriate for the building and would be suitable to move to a new building in the future. Ms. Ashcroft m oved to approve the bid from Aerus of Rutland. Ms. Russell seconded the motion and it passed 5-0.

Ed Dumas Rutland Town Police Chief:

  1. Recent calls for service were provided.
  2. Informed the board that James Gamble has been moved to full time status.
  3. Informed the board that modifications to calls responses have been issued. Calls will be handled by phone when possible.

John Paul Faignant Town Health Officer

  1. Discussed the need to convene as the Board of Health to affirm his order to close Town Hall to the public. The dates for the closing need to be reevaluated on an ongoing basis.

Mr. Denardo discussed coordinating efforts with a developer looking at property to the west of Aldis on Route 7 south to help with mitigating storm water issues in the area.

The board discussed issues which could arise as a result of the closure of Town Hall. Mr. Faignant stated if anyone submits an issue or complaint it could be heard at a future board meeting.

Ms. Russell moved to adjourn the board meeting and convene as the Board of Health. Ms. Ashcroft seconded the motion and it passed 5-0 at 7:27 PM.

The board discussed the Town Health Officer order to limit access to Town Hall by the public. Ms. Russell moved to close Town Hall as a preventative measure against the covid-19 virus. Mr. Denardo seconded the motion. The motion was amended to close the building until the next Select Board meeting and requested the Town Clerk to make accommodations to people requesting specific appointments. The motion passed 4-0 with Mr. Faignant abstaining.

A board of health meeting will be warned as part of the next Select Board meeting.

Ms. Russell moved to adjourn the Board of Health. Mr. Denardo seconded the motion and it passed 5-0. The meeting adjourned at 7:35 PM.

Respectfully submitted, Mr. Bill Sweet


Joshua C. Terenzini, Chairman
Mary Ashcroft, Clerk
John Paul Faignant
Joseph Denardo
Sharon Russell


Center Rutland, VT.