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 Meeting Minutes 
August 27, 2012 -- 7:00 p.m. -- Memorial Hall

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

Media Present: Diane Broncaccio, The Recorder

Acceptance of Meeting Minutes: Joe presented a motion to accept the minutes of August 13, 2012 as presented. John seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Noteworthy News:

  • Joe was pleased to report that a men's basketball league organized by Fred Redeker is using the outdoor basketball court at Cowell Gymnasium on Monday evenings. The Board hopes that once improvements to the building are complete; that the use of the facility will increase.
  • Bob reminded residents that the school year is about to begin. He cautioned drivers to be mindful of school children in crosswalks and suggested that individuals allow extra time in their morning and afternoon commute to accommodate bus traffic.

Department Liaison Reports:
Police Department - is dealing with a couple of issues locally.

Highway - Mark is settling in well. The Department is waiting to receive approval from Mass Highway for Chapter 90 related work on Colrain-Shelburne Road and Shelburne Center Road. Joe anticipates that the Town will have approximately $150,000 left in Chapter 90 funds once those two projects are complete. In the meantime, the crew is preparing for the winter months ahead.

Town Hall - Bob is meeting with Town Hall staff tomorrow to learn more about future budget needs and any other concerns they may have.

Cemetery Commission - Joe attended a meeting of the Cemetery Commission last week and was pleased to report that the group is enthusiastic and working hard. They have begun to develop policies, a fee structure, and a chain of command for future burials at the Hill cemetery. Their long range goal is to eventually eliminate the Town Clerk from the process.

Highway Superintendent Position - Bob reported that search committee independently reviewed the six (6) resumes and either verbalized or indicated via email; the names of three candidates they would like to interview. Before proceeding, Bob requested clarification from the Board regarding the process. After a brief discussion, the Board agreed that the Committee should meet on September 13th to interview three or more candidates; determine whether additional applicants should be interviewed, and bring forth the name of two or more finalists to the Board of Selectmen.

Highway Department Furnace Installation - Tognorelli Heating of Turners Falls will install a new oil furnace and replace two existing oil delivery pumps and motors on October 22, 2012.

Cowell Gymnasium:
Mold Remediation Work - An advertisement for the project will publish in the Central Register. Joe will oversee a mandatory site visit scheduled on September 4, 2012. This is an opportunity for interested firms to view the site. Bids are due on September 19, 2012

Furniture & Equipment Removal - Once access is available, Jim Richardson will remove and dispose of all of the scrap metal. Jim will split the proceeds equally with the Town.

Tag Sale and/or Silent Auction - On Saturday, September 29th, the Town will host a tag sale and/or silent auction between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. at the

Cowell Gymnasium. Joe and John will attend along with members of the Highway Department to assist with moving and loading items. John will develop an advertisement for the local newspaper. Items not sold shall be disposed of during the remediation work.

Waterproofing & Drainage Work - Excavation of the foundation is complete and drainage work is underway.

Chimney Work - Tim Nye of Ashfield made a site visit and will prepare an estimate for the Board to consider.

Transfer Station RE: Private/Commercial Haulers - The Board of Health did adopt regulations in 1999 that requires licensure for solid waste and recycling haulers. The Board of Health will review the regulations at their next meeting and shall adopt a fee structure that is more in keeping with neighboring towns.

Cowell Gym Director Vacancy - members of the Recreation Committee are seeking potential candidates for the position. In the meantime, Joe suggested inviting them in to discuss the possibility of joining forces with Buckland's Recreation Committee to manage facilities and facilitate year-round recreational programs.

Memorial Drive Winter Maintenance - Joe will meet Kevin for a second discussion regarding Memorial Drive's winter maintenance on Thursday, August 30, 2012.
Arms Library RE: Annual Roof Check - Joe contacted Wooliver Roofing, they have agreed to schedule an inspection this fall.

Louis Migliozzi RE: Donation of 10+ Acres of Land on Brook Road - Following a site visit to the property Board members decided that the Land Trust would be best suited to broker a deal and/or hold the property until a suitable use was determined. John reported that the Land Trust will discuss the property and report to the Board.

Vacation Policy RE: Proposed Revisions - John presented a motion to adopt revisions to the vacation policy as set forth in suggestion #2. Joe seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Suggestion #2 Reads: 
Department Heads, in consultation with the Department Liaisons, must approve all vacation time. In approving vacation time the Department Head will take into account current staffing levels, department workloads and anticipated needs. Vacation time will be approved on a first come, first serve basis, and department heads may limit the number of staff who can be on vacation at the same time.

Employees wishing to take one week or longer vacation time must apply to their Department Head at least three weeks in advance of the leave date; those wishing to take partial day, single or multiple days vacation time must apply a week in advance. Partial vacation day, medical leave, and personal days may not be mixed with overtime work (see overtime policy page 26 section "N").

Department Heads, in consultation with the Department Liaison, shall consider special circumstances whereby an employee is unable to give advance notice prior to a vacation request.

Identification Badges for Town Officials - Joe presented a few options for the Board to consider. After offering a few suggested changes, Joe presented a motion to authorize an expenditure of up to $200 from the Selectmen's expense account for the purchase of identification badges. John seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously. Joe is in the process of finalizing a list of town officials who will receive the badges before placing the order.

Senior Center Proposed User Policy - members of the Council on Aging Board approved a User Policy for the Senior Center that allows non-member residents an opportunity to participate in various programs (if space allows) for a fee. Board members reviewed the policy and remarked that it was well thought out. Joe presented a motion to approve it as presented. John seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously. John suggested that the Center revisit the policy in six months or a year to ensure that the fee structure adequately covers associated expenses.

Proposed Development of Glacial Pothole Area - Joe indicated that he has received a lot of positive feedback since the Board initially discussed the development of the glacial pothole area. He made it clear that the Board's plan does not include "access" to the potholes. The long-rang plan does include an expanded viewing area, public bathrooms, and possibly a "Discovery" type center. Joe requested that the Board allow him the flexibility and latitude to move this project in the right direction. John presented a series of questions regarding the process and suggested that the Board partner with the SFABA. After it became apparent that the two had differing opinions, Bob summarized the discussion highlighting areas of common ground. In his summary, everyone agreed upon the following:

  • The Town is not advocating access to the water or rocks;
  • A partnership between public and private entities must be formed in order to accomplish this project;
  • The Board likes the concept of an expanded viewing deck, public bathrooms, and a Discovery type Center

Joe did not want to continue the discussion. He did not feel that the Board was ready to move forward in a direction that was quite clear to him. Bob recommended that the Board resume their discussions at their next meeting.

Emergency Planning Grant - following a brief discussion, John presented a motion authorizing Emergency Management Director, Chris Myers to apply for up to $2,500 in emergency planning grant funds to pay for purchase and installation of transfer panels at Fellowship Hall and Memorial Hall to allow for a back-up power supply during an emergency. Joe seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Other Areas of Emergency Planning to be Discussed -

  • Evacuation centers - location, access, suitability, supplies, power, capacity, term, staffing, control, sanitation;
  • Evacuation routes - Congestion, capacity, control responsibility, emergency vehicle priority passage, road condition, communication;
  • Town Records;
  • Communications systems and back-ups in various scenarios (flood, fire, storms, power outages, chemical spills, etc;
  • Preparing for weather events;
  • Emergency Teams, Management Structure, Training and Practice

Bob suggested that once a Highway Superintendent is hired, the Board should schedule a meeting to discuss the above mentioned priorities with key emergency personnel.

Senior Center RE: Three Town Agreement - revisions to the agreement have been approved by all member boards, reviewed by Counsel and is ready for signing.

Senior Center Director RE: Approval of New Wage Rate - Joe presented a motion to compensate the Town's newly hired Senior Center Director, Cathy Buntin in accordance with the wage and classification schedule: Grade 11 step 9. John seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Fiscal Year 2011 Audit Report - John gave a brief overview of the management letter. Despite economic pressures at both state and local levels, the report indicated that the Town has done an excellent job of continuing to maintain a solid financial position however; the auditor continues to recommend a more aggressive tax collection policy. The Board will meet with a representative of Scanlon and Associates to discuss the details of the management letter on Tuesday, September 18th at 3:30 p.m.
Personnel Policy Revision RE: Payment of Overtime - Scanlon & Associates recommended that the Town review overtime pay policies and revise them to reflect the Fair Labor Standards Act. In order to comply with the FLSA, John presented a motion to replace the town's current overtime policy with the following language. Joe seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Payment for overtime shall be in accordance with the terms of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 as amended. If an assignment requires work in excess of 40 hours per week, such overtime work must be authorized in advance by the department head or department liaison. Non-exempt employees shall be paid one and one-half times their regular hourly rate for hours worked beyond 40 hours in a 7 day period. 

For purposes of computing overtime pay, floater holidays, vacation, sick, personal or bereavement days taken during the work week shall not be considered as time worked. NOTE: Under the FLSA, 29 USC 207(e), hours of service for purposes of overtime or compensatory time does not include vacation, holiday or sick time, whether paid or unpaid. Rather, overtime is based on hours actually engaged in work for the employer. Leaves without pay are excluded from any such compensation. Executive, administrative, and professional employees are exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act and are not eligible for overtime pay.

Barry Goldstein RE: Fire Escape Construction - Mr. Goldstein expressed apology for failing to communicate with the Board and finalize required documentation before erecting a new fire escape that ties into the existing fire escape at Memorial Hall. Barry has assured the Board that his attorney, Bill O'Neil will work with Donna MacNicol to finalize any outstanding requirements. He will also continue to work with the local Fire Chief to address and signage and lighting concerns.

Town Clerk RE: Appointment of Election Workers for FY'2013 - Joe presented a motion to appoint the following individuals as Election workers for the town. Bob seconded the motion. John abstained. Motion passed: 2 - yes; 1 - abstention.

Anita Wall Laurene York Susan Flaccus William Neeley
Sylvia Dole Patricia Harris Maureen Pike Mary Cromack
Alice Gottardi Elizabeth Burnham Sheryl Clark Gloria Easton
Marion Lagerberg Kathleen Upton Martha Davenport Sylvia Smith
Nathalie McCormick Ella Cosimini Jennifer Luck Lois Gifford
John Payne      

Massachusetts Cultural Council RE: State Designation for Shelburne Falls - The 
Board received a letter from the Massachusetts Cultural Council officially confirming the state's designation of the Shelburne Falls Cultural District on August 21, 2012. Shelburne Falls is one of the first 10 municipalities to have achieved a cultural district designation. The designation will remaining effect for a period of five years and renewed upon successful compliance with annual reporting requirements and a recommitment by the municipality.

Cristine Levitre RE; Bridge Street Craft Booth - Ms. Levitre is seeking permission to set up a small tent and table to sell crafts on Bridge Street near Upton-Massamont Insurance Agency on September 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, and 16 between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. She will also obtain written permission from the property owner. Bob recommended that the Board speak with Mary Vilbon before acting on the request to be sure that Ms. Levitre's proposal is in keeping with the business district.



ADJOURNMENT: Joe presented a motion to adjourn the meeting at 9:10 p.m. John seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Respectfully submitted,

Terry Mosher
Town Administrator