Upcoming Meetings

  1. Select Board MeetingMon, Jul 23 07:00 pm
  2. Open Space Committee MeetingMon, Jul 23 07:00 pm
  3. Finance Committee MeetingMon, Jul 23 07:00 pm

Selectmen Meeting Minutes — July 19, 2010—7:00 p.m. — Memorial Hall.

Call to order: Joe called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. Other members present: Bob Manners and John Payne.

Media Present: Cameron Graves, Shelburne Falls Independent

Acceptance of Minutes: Bob presented a motion to accept the minutes of June 29, 2010 as presented. John seconded the motion and suggested that the document detailing the end-of-year budgetary transfers that were recommended by Accountant, Joyce Muka and approved by the Board; be added to the minutes. Motion approved unanimously.

Noteworthy News:

  • Bridge of Flowers Road Race, August 14, 2010
  • 10th Annual Iron Bridge Dinner, August 15, 2010

Department Liaison Reports:
Highway -- roadside mowing continues; drainage has been installed on Zerah Fiske (between Old Greenfield Road and Route 2); and the crew is in the process of realigning the second section of the road just south of Old Greenfield Road. Nothing new to report on the Brook Road; Bob indicated that heavy rains could potentially compromise and close two sections of the road. The Highway crew also cleaned out the ground-level window wells at the Cowell Gymnasium and removed vegetation away from the building.

F.R.C.O.G. -- John attended a Finance Committee meeting last week where several year-end transfers were approved. John also reported that Greenfield will be implementing a "pay for parking" system for five of their municipally owned parking lots in August. Individuals can either pay an annual fee of $200 or pay for each individual use. A request by F.R.C.O.G. staff to be reimbursed for their annual parking expenses once the program is implemented was denied. Members of the F.R.C.O.G. will review a letter to Attorney General, Martha Coakley concerning the changes to the Open Meeting Law at their quarterly meeting on July 22nd.

Town Office -- Joe will follow-up with Bruce Stetson on the completion of the display cases in the front foyer. He also intends to hold a staff meeting in the next month to discuss a variety of topics.

Old Business:
Energy Committee Update - John reported that he had contacted John Ryan of Breezeway Farm Consulting to see if his firm was interested in submitting a cost proposal for technical consultant services. Breezeway Farm Consulting declined the invitation citing lack of expertise in the area of energy conservation and time constraints as their reasons.

Energy Management & Consulting Services -- members of the Energy Committee have brought forth a recommendation to hire David Ward of Energy Engineering & Design of Framingham, MA. Using the Energy Committee's list of 18 energy saving priorities, Mr. Ward would determine realistic purchase and installation costs, annual energy savings, and annual maintenance and operating costs. Once this information is compiled, members of the Selectboard can decide whether to proceed with the projects (i.e. special town meeting, borrowing, etc.). Energy Engineering and Design will provide these services for $5,750. Following a brief discussion, John brought forth a motion to engage the services of Energy Engineering and Design for $5,750. Joe seconded the motion. Motion passed as follows: Joe nd John -- yes; Bob -- abstained.

Department of Energy Resources -- John will contact Elise Avers to inform her of the Board's decision to hire a technical consultant. He will also ask whether DOER will provide the town any flexibility in terms of funding if in fact the technical consultant determines that the overall cost of the project is less than $405,000.

Cowell Gymnasium:
Mold Remediation -- Joe and Chief Walker met with a representative from the Department of Public Health who identified a lot of mold-related issues inside the gymnasium building. While some of the problems are not as severe as others; each one needs to be addressed. The Department of Public Health will compile a report of their findings to include proposed methods of remediation.

Members of the Selectboard met a week ago Sunday with local contractor, George Dole at the Cowell Gymnasium. Joe reported that George had some ideas of his own relative to the mold problem; suggesting opening interior doors and exterior windows to create more air circulation throughout the building. Given the humid weather, John cautioned that opening windows may add to the problem. As an interim solution, John agreed that interior doors throughout the building should be opened and suggested adding some fans to better circulate the air. Bob suggested purchasing a couple of dehumidifiers to draw some of the moisture out of the building. Joe offered to pursue these suggestions.

Cowell Gymnasium Roof -- John is not convinced that the roof is as bad as originally thought and indicated that he did not feel the expense of an infrared scan was warranted. Recent core samples of the roof indicated that there is moisture in the insulation however; George Dole suggested that the moisture could be the result of condensation from moist air rising from below rather than a roof leak. Members of the Board discussed the possibility of placing a pitched roof on the building. George recommended that the town first consult with a structural engineer to ensure that the exterior walls could bear the weight. A thorough master plan addressing each of the town's buildings is what Bob would like to see; rather than a piece meal approach. From solar panels, to roofs, lighting upgrades, doors, and new windows; he would like to "shoot for the moon" and encompass it all.

F.R.C.O.G. Municipal Services Survey -- members of the Selectboard worked collectively to answer the survey questions relative to regionalized services. John will complete the survey via the internet on behalf of the Board.

Sale of the 1997 Mack Truck -- Six bidders responded to the town's advertisement for the sale of the 1997 Mack truck. Bids ranged between $7,001 and $12,111. Acting on a recommendation brought forth by the Highway Superintendent, John presented a motion to accept the bid from Global Truck Traders, Inc. of Winchester, New Hampshire in the amount of $12,111. Bob seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Purchase of 2003 International Truck -- Clark's Truck Center of Jericho, Vermont was the only bidder to respond to the town's request for bids. Their bid was in the amount of $44,000. Using $32,000 from Chapter 90 funds and monies received from the sale of the 1997 Mack Truck, the town has enough money to purchase the used truck. John brought forth a motion to award the bid to Clark's Truck Center in the amount of $44,000 contingent upon a final discussion with the Town's Accountant to ensure that the purchase is in keeping with the spirit of town meetings vote. Bob seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Town of Buckland RE: Cooperative Sewer Agreement -- Town elections failed to bring forth three representatives to serve as the town's Sewer Commissioners; therefore members of the Selectboard reviewed and discussed proposed changes to the Cooperative Sewer Agreement between the towns of Buckland and Shelburne. The agreement expired in June, 2009. Proposed changes to the existing Agreement are as follows:

Section 8: Currently the District is using 4000 cubic feet per person as a default value if a resident home is not using water that comes from the Water District in order to compute a bill. The Town of Buckland is proposing a default value of 3400 cubic feet per person.

Section 11: The agreement calls for quarterly meetings. The Town of Buckland is proposing meetings on an "as needed" basis.

Section 12: The term of the Agreement has been 10 years; the Town of Buckland is proposing a 25 year agreement with the term expiring in 2035.

Members of the Selectboard were comfortable with the proposed changes. John presented a motion to sign the agreement as presented. Bob seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Ad Hoc Tree Committee RE: Study of Bridge Street Trees -- Several trees planted along Bridge Street in 1978 as part of the Shelburne Falls Woman's Club Community Improvement Project have become problematic. The trees which are primarily of the Locust species, have raised sidewalks creating trip hazards, and interfered with overhead banners, street lights, flags, and signage due to their height and widespread foliage. Joe has approached five residents of Shelburne to see whether they would be interested in serving on an ad-hoc committee so to determine the best approach for managing the trees. Those individuals are: Brock Cutting, Kevin Parsons, Susan Reed, Jeremy McGeorge, and Tree Warden, James Richardson. Both Bob and John agreed that a study committee was a good idea. Bob indicated that tree removal is an eligible expense under the Chapter 90 program should the town decide to remove and replant. John presented a motion to appoint the ad-hoc Tree Study Committee. Bob seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Pratt Memorial Building Committee RE: Building Needs -- The Pratt Building Committee, the Arms Library Trustees and the Selectboard need to address the question of who is responsible for repairs, maintenance, capital improvements, and long term building care. Funds specific to the Pratt Building fund have been separated from the Arms Library fund however, the fund does not have an annual source of income therefore the balance is minimal. The Library has suggested that the guidelines for both town libraries be the same. Following a brief discussion, it was agreed that John would continue to have dialogue with Trustees and Committee members with the hopes of developing some guidelines.

F.R.C.O.G. Contract Renewals - a motion was presented by John to renew the one year contracts with the Franklin Regional Council of Governments for the following services:

  • Town Accounting Services
  • Agreement to Use F.R.C.O.G's Fundware Software
  • Building Inspection Program

Bob seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Police Regionalization Study -- Barry DeCastillo, a consultant hired by the Franklin Regional Council of Government will present his findings relative to the potential benefits and drawbacks of regionalizing the Police Departments in the towns of Shelburne and Buckland on Tuesday, August 10, 201 at the Buckland Town Hall. The time of the presentation has yet to be determined.

Town of Colrain RE: Proposed Council on Aging By-Law Changes - Members of the Colrain Board of Selectmen have concerns with proposed changes to the Senior Center Consortium's Council on Aging By-Law Changes. Colrain feels that given the magnitude of the changes; they would prefer to have changes reviewed by Boards of Selectmen of the four towns rather than our Councils on Aging; some of which have only one member. Members of the Selectboard received a copy of the by-laws (with proposed changes) for their review. The Board will discuss Colrain's concerns at their next meeting in August.

Kevin Parsons RE: Request for Consideration under the Mass Economic Incentive Program -- Kevin wrote to the Selectboard asking them to accept his letter as a formal request for the Town to consider certifying the anticipated improvement to the property formerly known as the Mohawk Manor Rest Home for certified project status under Massachusetts Economic Incentive Program. Kevin further indicated that Shelburne Falls, Inn, LLC has a purchase and sale agreement with the current owner of the property and is seeking a special permit from the Zoning Board of Appeals to allow for a ten (10) unit inn at this site. Shelburne Fall Inn, LLC seeks to have the project certified so that they can take advantage of the Tax Increment Finance Exemption and possibly Investment Tax Credit available through this program. A formal application will be submitted to the town after the August 12th Zoning Board of Appeals hearing, providing they are granted a special permit. Kevin would like an opportunity to meet with the Selectboard so that he can discuss his project in detail. The Board will invite Kevin to attend one of their meetings in early August.

Preliminary Audit Report for FY'09 -- each member of the Board received a copy of the preliminary audit report for their review. Aside from a few housekeeping issues, the biggest problem remains; delinquent tax collections. The report will be discussed in more detail at the Board's next meeting.

Mass Broadband Institute - A representative from the Mass Broadband Institute, Jason Whiteck will be invited to attend a Selectboard meeting so to discuss what federal monies are available to rural communities for the expansion of broadband services. Members of the Cable Advisory Committee would also be invited to attend.
F.R.C.O.G. Project List for the Franklin Region -- John provided fellow Board members with a copy of the F.R.C.O.G.'s "project" list for fiscal years 2010 and 2011 for their review. No further action needed.

Department of Housing & Community Development RE: FY'10 Community Development Block Grant Award -- The towns of Shelburne and Buckland will receive $845,932 from the Massachusetts Community Development Block Grant Fund. Projects funded include: Franklin Street, Buckland; Hope and Mechanic Street, Shelburne; the Neighbor to Neighbor Program; and the Emergency Food Pantry. Many thanks to Breezeway Farm Consulting for their fine grant writing skills.

ADJOURNMENT: Bob presented a motion to adjourn the meeting at 9:35 p.m. John seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Respectfully submitted,

Terry Mosher, Executive Secretary