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Selectmen Meeting Minutes — July 30, 2008—3:00 p.m. — Memorial Hall

Call to Order: the meeting was called to order by Chairman, Robert Manners. Other members present: John Payne and Joe Judd.

Acceptance of Minutes: a motion was made by Joe to accept the minutes of July 24, 2008 as printed. John seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Order of Business:
Senior Center Lease Agreement - the draft lease document has been reviewed by Counsel, representatives from the four member towns and the Masons. Areas of the lease that have been changed as a result of those discussions include: Section 1. Description of Property: More discussion to come; would like to move away from limited hours of use; create a gentler, more cooperative approach to scheduling for both parties. Add stipulation that Masons must return the leased premises to its original state after each use. Section 2a. Term: pending Counsel's approval, term of lease will reflect two (2) years rather than three (3) in accordance with M.G.L. Chapter 30B. Section 3b. Rent: delete last sentence "if terms can be agreed upon by the parties". Section 5a Use: add "and other appropriate uses" to last sentence. Section 7. Utilities: last sentence remove "not to exceed five years". 14c Insurance: will seek clarification on the type and amount of coverage held by the Masons. Add: Closing Summary: At the end of the Mason's mortgage period (approximately 7 years), discuss the possibility of moving away from a monetary lease agreement; in keeping with the Mason's mission statement.
Use of Legal Counsel - protocol for utilizing the services of Town Counsel was discussed for clarification purposes. Everyone agreed that the policy remains the same; Board Chairmen's and/or Committee members must seek approval from the Chairman of the Board of Selectmen before utilizing her services. Bob will contact Donna MacNicol and remind her of the Board's policy.

Memorial Hall RE: Use of Air-Conditioning & Heat - in an effort to save money and minimize energy consumption in Memorial Hall, John recommended a policy whereby the thermostat for the air-conditioning unit be set between 73-75 degrees in the summers months and the thermostat for the heat be set at 68 degrees during the winter months. Everyone was in agreement with John's recommendation.

Accounting/Treasury Department - John discussed ongoing concerns relative to the overall operation of the town's financial department and the difficulty he has encountered trying to arrange for a joint discussion with the Fiscal Officer and the Treasurer. Following a brief discussion with the Board, Bob and Joe authorized John to speak with the F.R.C.O.G. and as well as other agencies to obtain information relative to payroll services and other cost-saving measures.

FY'07 CDBG Grant RE: Main Street Project - following a brief discussion, the Board requested that Terry contact John Ryan of Breezeway Consulting to obtain more information about the overall management, oversight, budget and payment of grant-related invoices.

Proposed Slaughterhouse Plans - on a personal level, John reported that a group of Shelburne Center livestock farmers continue to work on proposed plans for a cooperatively run slaughterhouse. The group is considering the former Mohawk Orchards site located on the Colrain-Shelburne Road. John is in the process of speaking with neighboring abutters.
Cable Advisory Committee - members of the cable advisory committee are frustrated by the limited offerings brought forth by Comcast during cable contract negotiations. According to John, enhancements offered by Comcast in the proposed contract are no better; and in some cases worse than the contract already in place. Committee members believe that Comcast's reluctance to commit to any additional build-out of service is in-part a result of ever-changing digital technology. If a suitable compromise cannot be reached, the Advisory Committee may recommend a 1-2 year contract extension.

Senior Center Energy Summit - Bob reported that there were over 75 people in attendance at the Senior Center for an open discussion relative to the "Home Heating Crisis" in West County. Representatives from the Franklin County Home Care Corporation, Community Action, Triad, Regional Housing Authority, Co-op Power as well as local and state representatives were in attendance. The purpose of the forum was to articulate needs, coordinate efforts around emergency fuel assistance, seek alternative energy solutions and begin to put together a coordinated action plan that identifies and responds to individuals in need.

Adjournment - a motion to adjourn was made by John at 4:48 p.m. Motion seconded by Joe. Motion carried unanimously.

Respectfully submitted,

Terry Mosher
Executive Secretary