Upcoming Meetings

  1. Select Board MeetingMon, Aug 20 07:00 pmAgenda link
  2. Finance Committee MeetingMon, Aug 20 07:00 pm
  3. Open Space Committee MeetingMon, Aug 27 07:00 pm

Selectmen’s Meeting Minutes — June 28, 2007—7:00 p.m. — Memorial Hall

Chairman Robert Manners called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.  Other members present: Joseph Judd and John Payne.

Acceptance of Minutes: a motion was made by Bob and seconded by Joe to accept the meeting minutes of June 14, 2007 as printed.  The motion carried unanimously.

Noteworthy News:
4th of July Parade will take place on Wednesday, July 4th.  The parade will form at the Buckland maintenance yard and will proceed to the Buckland-Shelburne Elementary School.

Department Liaison Reports:
John Payne reported that Cable Advisory member, Craig Manning has moved to Atlanta leaving a vacancy on that particular committee.  Craig served as Chairman to the Committee and was an extremely knowledgeable individual.  The next meeting of the Cable Advisory Committee will be held jointly with the Town of Buckland on July 11th at 6:00 p.m.

Joe reported that he had briefly entertained a grant application that would have partially funded a new police station.  Architect, Brian DeVriese graciously provided cost estimates, Joe spoke with neighbors near the proposed Cross Street site but then realized that the application deadline would not have allowed enough time to consider other locations.  Rather than rush into anything, Joe would rather form a Committee and look at all options.

Bob reported that the highway crew is presently working on dirt roads (Guy Manners Road and Hawks Road).  The crew is now sporting bright green t-shirts compliments of the town.  The shirts will allow the crewmembers to be more visible to vehicular traffic while working on town roads.

7:10 p.m. Beverly Neeley, Town Clerk Update – Beverly reported that article #39 has been approved by the Attorney General’s Office.  The article was an addition to the right-to-farm bylaw.  Once the language has been published in a local newspaper for two consecutive weeks, it will be ready to be incorporated in to the town bylaws.  Beverly also reported that 334 voters turned out to vote at the polls.  She has received positive feedback from residents after utilizing the town-wide phone system to remind voters of the up and coming election.  She publicly thanked Bob Manners for his suggestion of using the system and John Taylor for helping her record the message.  Beverly thanked her election workers noting that she has a good group of people working for her.  During this election the new voting machine for disabled voters was in operation.  Beverly mentioned that it would have been nice if the automatic openers on the front of the building were operational.  Beverly will not be able to attend the All Board’s training session on July 18 so she will put her thoughts in writing and give them to either John Payne or Terry Mosher.  Joe stated that he hopes to hold additional trainings in the fall to include a presentation by an Ethics Commission representative and a review by the Public Records Division.

Continuation of FY’08 Appointments:

Jeff Thompson—Animal Control/ Animal Inspection – Quarantine
A motion was made by Joe to appoint Jeff Thompson for a one-year term.  Motion seconded by John.  Joe stated that he had an opportunity to speak with Mr. Thompson and his concerns have been addressed.  Joe also noted that the Town of Buckland is pleased with Mr. Thompson’s performance especially in the area of dispute mediation.  Motion carried unanimously.

Irene DeJackome—Board of Health
John stated that he was not prepared to recommend Irene DeJackome for appointment at this time.  Bob asked if John had had an opportunity to meet with Irene.  John stated that when he first called Irene before the June 14the meeting, she was away in Maine.  They did not meet during the subsequent week therefore John emailed Irene his recommendation of non-reappointment on Wednesday before the June 28th meeting. Joe asked whether or not the Board should attempt to meet with Irene in a private setting to discuss their concerns.  John stated that while he would be happy to meet with Irene, the appointment process is a decision of the Board of Selectmen and is not subject to the same process that employees are.  John stated that Town Counsel confirmed this in previous discussions relative to annual appointments.  Bob pointed out that Mrs. DeJackome has submitted a three-page letter (dated June 29) alleging misconduct on behalf of the Board of Selectmen (neither Joe or John had had an opportunity to review the letter prior to the meeting).  The letter has been filed with the Ethics Commission and the District Attorney’s Office.  Bob recommended that the Board consult with legal Counsel before taking any action.  Both Joe and John agreed.

Reserve Officers:

Town of Buckland
James Hicks                Robert Carmody                      Roger Williams
Michael Johnson         Nathan Jackman                      Charles Wilder
Edwin Thurston          Mike Dekoshcak                     Jason LaRose
Jeffrey King

Town of Charlemont
Charles Bellows          Jared Bellows                          Melinda Herzig
Holland Herzig            Scott Sullivan                          Clayton Herbert
Kurt Gilmore               Jaimie Waikus                         John McDonough
Lee Lively                   John Paciorek, Jr.                    Dave Gendron

Town of Conway
Kenneth Ouimette

A motion was made by Joe Judd to appoint the above listed officers from the towns of Buckland, Charlemont and Conway.  John seconded the motion.  When the final vote was taken the outcome was two in favor; Bob abstained.

Agricultural Commission Assignment of Three-Year Staggered Terms:
Now that members of the Agricultural Commission have served one full year, a motion was made by John Payne to apply three-year staggered terms in accordance with the town meeting vote.  Joe seconded the motion.  Motion carried unanimously.  Terms applied as follows:
Norman Davenport     2008                Karen Gould   2008
Barbara Parry              2009                Tim Smith       2009
Carolyn Wheeler         2010

Summer Meeting Schedule – the Board decided to continue to meet in the month of July and revisit the possibility of a partial summer schedule in August.  No further action taken.
All Board’s Training Notice – Notice of the training will be sent to the Chairman’s and Recording Secretary’s of all town boards and committees.  The meeting has been scheduled for Wednesday, July 18, 2007.  Attendees will discuss appointments, record requests, and record keeping amongst other topics.
Arms Library – nothing to report.
Senior Center Lease – Joe hopes to reconvene discussion with the Masons in the near future and then sit down with the four-member towns.
Bi-Weekly Payroll – after lengthy discussion with the Treasurer, Virginia Peck, John made a motion to process payroll every two weeks rather than every week.  John stated that the change would allow both the Treasurer and the Fiscal Officer to use their time more efficiently, will allow the Treasurer to take vacations and the Board of Selectmen will only have to sign warrants every two weeks.  Employees would be given three months notice before the changes take effect.  Joe suggested meeting with the employees sometime in September to discuss proposed changes.  Should the Board receive negative feedback from the employees, they indicated that they would be willing to revisit their decision.  After no further discussion, Joe seconded the motion.  Motion carried unanimously.

Re-Organization of The Board (effective July 1)
Chairman – a motion was made by John and seconded by Bob to nominate Joe as Chairman of the Board.  Motion carried unanimously.
Vice-Chairman – a motion was made by Bob and seconded by Joe to nominate John as Vice-Chairman.  Motion carried unanimously.
Clerk – a motion was made by John and seconded by Joe; nominating Bob as Clerk of the Board.  Motion carried unanimously.

Department Liaison’s – each Board member will continue to serve as liaisons for the following departments:
Joe – Police and Senior Center, Bob - Highway, John – Town Office

Draft Tobacco Policy – Bob drafted a town policy that would prohibit the use of any tobacco products (cigarettes, chewing tobacco, etc) while at work.  The policy initially outlined a four-step warning process, however after a brief discussion the board agreed on a three-step process.  A motion was made by Joe to accept the policy pending Town Counsel’s review.  The motion was seconded by John and accepted unanimously.  John suggested that a letter be drafted notifying Ms. Ledwandowski of the policy once the language has been approved.

Trash Receptacle on Deerfield Ave. – shop owners on Deerfield Ave. would like to have a receptacle purchased and placed near North River Glass.  During the summer months, Deerfield Ave. is subject to a great deal of tourist traffic and in order to deter individuals from disposing of their trash improperly, they would like to have the town purchase and install a receptacle similar to those located throughout Bridge Street.  Terry Mosher contacted the company and received an estimate of $1,044 (includes shipping and handling).  Joe recommended that the town purchase the additional trash receptacle using funds from the refuse account.  Following a brief discussion, a motion was made by Joe to purchase one trash receptacle to be placed on Deerfield Ave.  Motion seconded by John and carried unanimously.

Renewal Contract for Solid Waste & Recyclables – after obtaining quotes for hauling and disposing of the town’s solid waste and recyclables, Terry Mosher recommended renewing the town’s two-year contract with current hauler, Dave Wickles of Hatfield, MA.  In comparison to the other quotes offered, Dave Wickles is still far less expensive.  The only drawback being that the town pays Mr. Wickles $60 per month in rental fees for a second recycling container.  Terry hopes that the town will be able to find and purchase a refurbished container some time in the future for approximately $4,500.  After no further discussion, a motion was made by Joe to accept the proposal submitted by Dave Wickles Trucking of Hatfield, MA.  The motion was seconded by John and carried unanimously.

DHCH RE: 90 Day Extension to File Single Audit Report – John Ryan of Breezeway Farm consulting recommended that the Board seek a 90 day grant extension from the Department of Housing & Community Development (until September 30, 2007) to file the Single Audit Report for Fiscal Year 2006.  Although the town audit is underway and completion is anticipated by mid-July, John Ryan unless the town receives this extension approval, we will not be able to drawdown anymore grant funding.  John asked why the auditor is so late in completing the work.  Terry Mosher explained that the firm is small and has encountered unexpected problems with larger accounts.  John recommended that the Board sit down with Mr. Haynes and discuss the lateness of the audit once it is complete.  A motion was made by Joe to approve the 90-day extension request.  John seconded the motion.  Motion carried unanimously.

Highway Department RE: Clothing Allowance – Bob requested that fellow Board members consider creating a budgetary line item account at the next special town meeting to allow highway employees to purchase up to $100 per year in work-related clothing.  If voters were to approve the suggested account, Bob would then request the necessary funding at the next annual town meeting.

Agricultural Commission’s Appointment to the Open Space Committee – following a meeting of the Agricultural Commission, Norman Davenport presented the Board with a note stating that Carolyn Wheeler was appointed to represent the Agricultural Commission on the Open Space Committee.  No further action required.

8:10 p.m. Richard Dils RE: Appointment Process – Mr. Dils appeared before the Board with a multi-page statement that he wished to read before the Board outlining several areas of concern (i.e. appointments, town meeting, Zoning Ad-Hoc Committee, etc).  Initially, neither Chairman Manners nor Selectmen Judd was willing to hear the same concerns that have been voiced repeatedly over the last several months.  After a brief discussion, Joe suggested that Mr. Dils be allowed to read his statement providing that he agree never to bring these topics before the Board again.  Mr. Dils agreed to Joe’s suggestion and proceeded to read his prepared statement.  In his prepared statement, Mr. Dils alleged numerous wrongdoings that have occurred over the last several months. 

Irene DeJackome RE: Reappointment to the Board of Health and Allegations Against the Board – Chairman Manners was the only member of the Board that had an opportunity to review the letter before the meeting began.  Because Ms. DeJackome has requested an investigation by the Ethics Commission and the District Attorney’s Office, the Board will await the outcome before taking any action.  In the meantime, the Board will consult with Town Counsel concerning the allegations made.

James Wall RE: Board of Health Inquiry – no action taken.

Patricia Elie, Foxtown Coffee Shop RE: Letter of Support for Irene DeJackome – no action taken.

Helen Gould RE: Past Experience with Board of Health Inspections – no action taken.

Karen Gould RE: Recommended Corrections to June 14, 2007 Selectmen’s Meting Minutes – no action taken.  Minutes of June 14, 2007 Selectmen’s Meeting had been unanimously approved earlier in the evening.

Gene Butler asked about the Agricultural Commission’s appointment to the Open Space Committee.  He spoke at length about how the appointments should have been handled. 

A motion to adjourn was made by Joe Judd.  Karen Gould objected stating that she had not had an opportunity to speak. 

Karen Gould read a lengthy statement about the Open Space Appointments and urged the Board to reconsider appointments alleging that they were “loading” the Committee. 
When Ms. Gould was finished, Richard Dils mentioned that he is an expert both nationally and internationally and has a lot to offer the Open Space Committee.  He offered to present his five-page resume.

Motion made by Joe Judd to adjourn the meeting at 9:57 p.m.  Motion seconded by John Payne.  Motion carried unanimously.

Respectfully submitted,

Terry Mosher
Executive Secretary