- 2023- 10
- 2006- 9
September 11, 2018
General Assistance Public Hearing
The Town Administrator informed the public and Board that there were only a few minor changes in State Numbers which included:
Food Maximum – increased by $1.00 for Singles and $4.00 based on Household.
Heating Fuel – no changes
Electrical – no changes
Personal Care – no changes
Housing Maximums – lowered the overall amount someone needs to meet to qualify and no changes on households with 5 or more children.
The Town is required to inform the public and answer any questions or concerns. There was no questions or concerns raised. Selectmen Stacey-Horn made a motion to close the Public Hearing; Selectmen Miller seconded. Selectmen Walsh asked for any discussion. Hearing none, public hearing was closed.
1. APPROVAL OF AGENDA:
Selectmen Elise Miller made a motion to approve the agenda; seconded by Selectmen Kimberly Stacey-Horn. No discussion. All in favor. Agenda approved.
2. MINUTES OF LAST MEETING:
Selectmen Miller made a motion to approve the minutes of August 28th and September 4th; Selectmen Stacey-Horn seconded. No discussion. All in favor; minutes approved.
3. DEPARTMENT HEAD / COMMITTEE CHAIR UPDATES:
4. OLD BUSINESS:
A. Road Association Funds
Selectmen Miller reported that the attorney made a few recommendations. The attorney also reached out to the DEP and they made a recommendation for Acton to use the watershed survey. Selectmen Miller indicated that the water shed survey information was not the only method the Board needs to use to indicate what areas need to be considered in the grant process, however it is a good idea that if there are roads to be fixed, the Board can be proactive in fixing those cited roads.
The major recommendation by the DEP was for the process to be done in reverse whereas the Board could have the Road Commissioner or Road Committee review which roads needed worked on and prioritize.
Discussion ensued on methods of handling requests as well as being proactive in repairing those roads which needed fixing. A cap has not yet been discussed. Prioritization of funds can be considered by utilizing the watershed survey as a guideline as well as the Road Committee review and Road Association applications. Applications can also be placed not only for repairs but also the maintenance of roads.
The Town Administrator will make suggested minor changes to the application based on lawyers recommendations and have the application made available for use immediately.
B. Personnel Policy
The Treasurer needs more direction from the Board to calculate an answer to their request on information needed to make a decision on part-time employees parameters to receive time off or benefits. Vote of 2 – 1, the Board decided to make no changes to the policy on this matter.
C. Generator / Truck Specs
The Fire Chief has reviewed the truck specifications, The Town Administrator has now advertised for bids and bid requests have been sent out to numerous truck dealerships.
D. Mooring Ordinance
The Town Administrator read out Attorney Lenkowski's response to whether the Board should consider a Town ordinance for mooring or not. Attorney Lenkowski advised that where a person gets to moor a boat is a civil matter. The Board is considering the attorney's recommendation and not move forward with an ordinance specifically due to the fact that they can not enforce it. Also, Selectmen Walsh would like to leave this matter go unless someone from the Town wants to petition for the ordinance
Mr. John Nadeau approached the Board and indicated that he did not agree with Mr. Lenkowski's recommendations. Mr. Nadeau said that he felt that it is the Board's place to protect his rights. This matter has been going on for some time and others around the Lake are also having mooring issues. Mr. Nadeau explained to the Board his feelings on this matter and asked the Board to please do something about this matter. He felt that if the Board started to enforce it (even with a phone call to ask person to move), it will make a great difference.
Due to the fact that boating season is coming to an end, the Board will table this issue for a few months to allow for the Town Administrator to find out if there are other lakes experiencing the same issues with mooring; further research by the Board can be done to familiarize themselves with the possibility of ordinance and enforcement; and whether the Town's people have enough interest to pursue with a petition.
E. Canal Bridge
The Town Administrator dropped the folder to Mr. Morin's office to review; still awaiting a response. Tabled until response is received.
F. ACO Position
Selectmen Walsh read aloud Mr. Wayne Ham's Area Control Officer resignation letter; accepted with regrets. The Town Administrator is advertising this position. The Board is considering splitting the job to help alleviate the time the position consumes. The Town Administrator is looking into a back up plan in case no proper candidate is available to fulfill the position surfaces.
5. NEW BUSINESS:
A. General Assistance
Selectmen Miller made a motion to adopt the General Assistance Ordinance for 2018-2019; seconded by Selectmen Stacey-Horn. No discussion. All in favor. Motion passed. Document signed.
B. Road Committee Presentation
Mrs. Cindy Hart, Chairman of Road Committee approached the Board to thank the members of the Road Committee (Leslie Berlin, Ken Wynn, Arnold Murray, and Chuck Gregory) who inventoried the Town roads and their conditions. She turned the presentation over to Mr. Gregory to lead the presentation. Items covered in the presentation were (presentation can be viewed online through APAT):
Laptop Based Surveys
Road and Bridge Management
Infrastructure Management Plan
Selectmen Miller summarized following the presentation that she has learned a lot through this project. A great plan would be to sit down with the Road Committee and the Road Commissioners and decide work to be done and set priorities. One key learning point was the roads as Acton should be looked at as one not two departments for budgeting purposes. A split by projects is more practical than a down the middle split. Selectmen Stacey-Horn noted that one side might need more work than the other side; it would be nice for all to get together and meet. The Town Administrator reported that one Commissioner indicated that he will not sit down and meet; that he is elected and does not need to be governed by the Board of Selectmen or Road Committee to do his job. Selectmen Walsh indicated that he understood that one Road Commissioner works with the group and the other does not, but the Town wanted a Road Committee and thus we have one.
Mr. Poyant approached the Board regarding responding to budget appropriation. His point is how the Town wants to work in the future and not how work was done in the past. He suggested more comprehensive plans needed to be laid out for the Board and the Board's approval over the plans and money's spent would then sit better. The Board believes the Road Committee should be able to guide what the Road Commissioner's are doing.
Road Commissioner Winchell approached the Board regarding the Selectmen and Road Committee controlling an elected Road Commissioner not a hired employee. At budget time it makes sense but not in everyday decisions. It is very involved. There is a lot of stuff the Road Commissioner would like to do, but juggling budgets is their biggest problem to getting it all done.
Discussions ensued on semantics of the job, budgeting, what would be nice to have done, and what is currently the practice.
Selectmen Walsh indicated the benefit of working together will help in getting more done. As far as the Town having a full time Road Commissioner, the Board is not sure if they can afford it. He thanked the Road Committee for working on the RSMS.
C. Goat Hill Open House
Maine Farmland Trust invites all to attend a party on Wednesday, September 12 at Romac Orchards/Goat Hill to celebrate and discover what has been done with area through Farm Hill Protection and Community collaboration.
D. Gym Needs
The Town Administrator notified the Board that some monies (under $500) will be needed to maintain the gym. The Town Administrator will look into the particle board outside that needs replaced. The Board approved that $500. Reminder, if you have not paid your gym dues, please do so now.
E. Propane 18-19
The Town Administrator is in the process of reaching out to provider for new rate and would like to go out to bid for the cost of oil and propane. The church is also seeking to co-op with the Town and will be responsible of their own portion. The Board said yes to going out to bid.
F. Coat/Boot Drive
A couple of local residents have put together a Coat/boot Drive and are taking in gently used items. Goal is to allow the residents of the Town to come in confidentially to select items for free if in need. Once residents have had this chance, any items not selected will be boxed up and sent to the local homeless Shelter for distribution.
The Town Administrator also reminded the group that there is a fund raising event for Neighbors Helping Neighbors at Iron Tails on September 22, 2018 and tickets are available at the Town Hall for purchase. Tickets are $10.00 and 100% of proceeds goes to Neighbors Helping Neighbors.
G. Road Commissioners
The Town Administrator noted that this item was added on at the last minute to begin conversations about contractors versus department. Ed Walsh stated the auditor asked why do we have control over employees but not the vehicles used for Town work? It was suggested to lay out a structure where independent contractors are hired, they come in, do the work, gives us a bill, we pay. This format removes liability from the Town.
Selectman Walsh asked, where do we go from here? Dave Winchell indicated invoicing would have all the same things that you have now. In the long run he agrees with Selectmen Walsh, it does take away the liabilities. It's the little stuff that Town's monies are being wasted on. There would have to be some management on the wages due to worker's comp but equipment is standard. There would be no change in dollar amount; it would be 1 number instead of several numbers. One bill would be submitted for each job. The bill would be broken out. Materials will be still covered by the Town of Acton because they get a price break. We are only talking about employees. It will alleviate personnel issues because it will all be up to the contractor; it helps control what is being paid out.
A legal opinion has been received by the Town's attorney, this will be presented next week. The Town Administrator will leave on agenda for next week to further look into this structure change. It will take a few weeks before a decision will be made.
6. PUBLIC COMMENT:
Rollin Waterhouse requested the Board to schedule a Warrant & Finance Committee informational meeting as there is no Chair or Vice Chair. The Town Administrator will schedule.
09/21/18 Maine Health Care Flu Shorts, 10 am – 11 am
09/22/18 to 9/23/18 Apple Fest
9/22/18 Bean Supper at the Church, 4:30 – 6:30 pm
9/22/18 Neighbors Helping Neighbors Fundraiser, 7 pm
8. MEMBERS PRESENT:
Selectmen Ed Walsh, Selectmen Elise Miller, Selectmen Kimberly Stacey-Horn and Town Administrator Jennifer Roux.
9. OTHERS PRESENT: Cindy Hart, Charles Gregory, Paul Poyant, John Nadeau, Ken Winn and David Winchell