Minutes

 

SELECTMEN’S MEETING

May 2, 2017

1. APPROVAL OF AGENDA: Moved by Elise Miller, seconded by Bill Shields, to accept the agenda as presented. The motion passed 3-0.

2. APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF LAST MEETING: Moved by Elise Miller, seconded by Bill Shields, to approve the minutes of the Board of Selectmen’s Meeting of April 18, 2017 as written. The motion passed 3-0.

The minutes for the meeting of April 25, 2017 were not yet available.

3. DEPARTMENT HEAD / COMMITTEE CHAIR UPDATES

  1. Mary Grant Nature Preserve: Mrs. Roux reported that the Chairman of the Mary Grant Nature Preserve Committee, Mary Terrell, requested that a cleanup day to be held on Saturday, May 20th at 9:00 until completion, hopefully around noon time, be announced at the Selectmen’s meeting and on the cable channel. Also, because the Committee has received many requests to hold small events such as birthday parties at the site, Mrs. Terrell also asked Mrs. Roux to help draft a form to be used to process these requests, no alcohol, no open fires, etc. Mrs. Roux contacted the Town’s attorney, Brad Morin, to work on developing a form, which should be available for the Board of Selectmen to act on at the next regular meeting.

  1. Fire Department: Chief Johnson spoke with the Board regarding the Forestry One truck which is in need of many expensive repairs. The vehicle is a 1986 GMC Sierra 3500 4X4 one ton with a 454 motor, Hale 14 hp pump, a 200 gallon tank and a 200 foot booster reel. Because the Forestry Two truck was brought into service last summer, the Chief recommended offering the vehicle out to bid for $3500. The Board Chairman suggested a minimum bid of $2,000. Moved by Elise Miller, seconded by Bill Shields, to offer the Forestry One tanker truck for a minimum bid of $2,000 with a deadline of May 30th. The motion passed 3-0.

Mrs. Roux noted regarding the Fire Department’s budget request, the per diem position was eliminated, the Fire Truck account is reduced to from $15,000 to $10,000 and per the Chief request the SCBA be pulled out and the turnout gear inserted, if only one can be bought during this budget cycle. The Chief stated that in the next budget cycle the Department can plan better for future budgeting.

  1. Road Commissioner: Mrs. Roux explained that the original request for $15,500 for weekly stipends for the Road Commissioners was reduced to $6500 for each of the two Road Commissioners to be paid as an hourly pay instead of a flat stipend. The road crew hourly wages were increased by 10% and a flat 5% for equipment if an increase was requested. The loader rate was budgeted for $3,000 per district per season.

Scott Mooney asked why the loader rate was reduced to $6,000. Mrs. Miller explained that area rates were considered. Dave Winchell explained that the loaders are used a lot sometimes for minimal materials so it only takes a few minutes. The two loaders are kept at the facility for around eight months per year. Renting a loader would cost as much as $4900 per month, without insurance, fuel etc.

Mrs. Miller noted that the Board is working to keep the budget at a 5% increase, and though the Road Budget is overdue for an increase, it can’t be done in one year. Mr. Winchell explained that it is getting increasingly difficult to find people to work on winter roads. Mr. Mooney reminded the Board that holiday pay and overtime after eight hours for the road crew was eliminated.

Mr. Winchell stated that he feels that the Selectmen are micro-managing the Road Commissioners’ budget with little understanding of what actually occurs. He said that excavators are a good example: to purchase this equipment would be $160,000 and to run it for $87 per hour is unreasonable; it should be in reality more like $150 per hour.

Mr. Mooney noted that, especially during the winter months, both of the Road Commissioners have to be on call, checking on roads, speaking with town residents, etc.

The Chairman suggested holding a workshop with the Board and the Road Commissioners to discuss these issues. Mr. Winchell prefers putting the original requests before the voters at the Annual Town Meeting and letting them decide. He noted that whatever the total budgeted amount of the account will stay the same no matter what you do with the sub accounts.
Consensus of the Board was to review the average cost of the loaders over the last three years, keep the wages and the equipment as originally requested and consider the points the Road Commissioners made and look again at that budget.

Mrs. Roux noted that because there is no Selectmen’s meeting on May 9th so they may need to hold an extra meeting at the end of the week in order to have the budget ready for the Warrant and Finance Committee.

  1. Forestry and Conservation Committee: Mrs. Roux reported that Carl Davis asked if the Town Forester plans cutting trees on town properties, does the Board need to vote on the plan. Consensus of the Board was that the Board of Selectmen should review and take action on these plans in the interest of transparency.

  1. Goat Hill RFP: Mrs. Roux reported that the Treasurer reviewed the two bids and recommended accepting the Sanford Institution for Savings RFP for 1.9% for five years. Moved by Elise Miller, seconded by Bill Shields, to accept the Sanford Institution for Savings RFP for the Goat Hill purchase loan for 1.9% for five years. The motion passed 3-0.

  1. Foreclosure, West Shore Drive: Mrs. Roux explained that the bank is sending the payment with overnight delivery. Because of faulty communication, the bank thought the due date was May 9th. Moved by Elise Miller, seconded by Bill Shields, to sign the Quit Claim deed for the property pending receipt of the payment.

  1. Lawn Care Bid: Mrs. Roux Lois Michaud provided information for the town held cemeteries but because there are still too many unknowns, the Town Attorney recommended keeping the two bids separate. Mrs. Roux noted that the bid for the five cemeteries will be available for consideration at the May 16th meeting and that the proposed lawn care bid for the Town Hall, Mary Grant Preserve, the Public Safety Building and the Lincoln School are the same as last year. The Chairman read the bid:

The Town of Acton is soliciting bids for lawn care for the 2017 season, May through November. Mowing is to be done at the Acton Town Hall, 35 H Road, the Acton Public Safety Building, 1725 Route 109; Mary Grant Nature Preserve, 420 Sam Page Road; and the Lincoln School House, 8 Orchard Road, on an as-needed basis. Raking, fertilizer and spring and fall clean up at the Town Hall site should also be included. Bid should include both a price per mow and a price per season quote as well as a list of three references. All bids should be submitted by 4:00 p.m. on May 30, 2017 to the Town Administrator, Town of Acton, 35 H Road, Acton, Maine 04001. Envelope should have “lawn bid” clearly marked on the outside. Proof of liability insurance and Workmen’s Compensation Insurance or a State Exempt Form must be furnished before the bid can be awarded. Bids will be opened at the Selectmen’s Meeting on May 30, 2017. Interested parties can contact 207 636-3131 extension 401 with questions.”

The Chairman suggested moving the deadline for the bid to May 16th because Memorial Day is approaching. Moved by Elise Miller, seconded by Bill Shields, to submit the bid with a deadline of May 16th with the inclusion of the statement that proof of insurance must accompany the bid and that no incomplete bids will be accepted. The motion passed 3-0.

Lois Michaud stated that the cemetery request for bid should also be submitted the same time in order to get the work done in time for spring cleanup. Mrs. Roux explained that without knowing exactly where the sites are, the bid cannot be processed in time and that the sites haven’t been maintained in recent years, it can’t be processed yet.

4. OLD BUSINESS:

  1. MMA Action Plan: No action to report.

  1. Dog Warrant: No action to report.

  1. Road Committee Ad Hoc: Mrs. Miller suggested holding a meeting on May 16th at 6:00 p.m.

5. NEW BUSINESS:

  1. Gym Parts: Mrs. Roux reported that she received notice that there are parts that are needed on equipment at the gym that are necessary for safety. Consensus of the Board was that if the parts don’t exceed $150, the funds can be taken from the gym budget to purchase the necessary parts.

  1. Freedom of Information Policy. Mrs. Roux distributed a copy of the current Freedom of Information Policy developed by the Town’s Attorney and MMA. She stated the interpretation of the policy is that if someone is requesting extensive documents, they would fill out a request form, but that everyone should be treated the same. Mrs. Roux suggested that the Board give her some discretion in processing the request. If the form has to be considered at a Selectmen’s meeting, it could take a week to get the approval. She requested that the Board review the policy and discuss it at the meeting on May 16th.

The Chairman signed a Request for Information from Kerri Cheney for all documents related to Building Permit #16/17 73.

6. PUBLIC COMMENT: Lois Michaud spoke with the Board on behalf of the Acton Historical Society which will hold a ceremony on the July 22nd at a plot that has an American Revolutionary soldier buried on the site. She said that the current total of war veterans buried in Acton is 110 which includes the American Revolution, the War of 1812, the Civil War, and some of WW1. She still has to inventory WW2, the Korean War, Viet Nam, etc.

Mrs. Roux noted that she is working on the Access to the Ancient Burial Grounds form with the change of date to November.

Mrs. Roux reported that the ramp at the house on H Road is nearly completed. She noted that Deering Lumber sold us the lumber at a discounted rate, Nate Roberge and his crew are building the ramp, the Road Commissioners are doing the landing, many Acton Residents have helped: Jim Driscoll, Bob Secar, Lori Williams, Dave Archambeault, Dan Dixie.

7. ANNOUNCEMENTS:

A. Special Town Meeting on May 9th at 7:00 at the School;

B. School Budget Presentation at the School on May 2 at 6:00 p.m.

C. Acton's Got Talent May 20th at 6:00 p.m. at the Elementary School

8. MEMBERS PRESENT: Ed Walsh, Bill Shields, Elise Miller

9. OTHERS PRESENT: Jennifer Roux, Steve Johnson, David Winchell, Scott Mooney, Lois Michaud