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Board of Selectmen Meeting Minutes

Any and all corrections to the following minutes will be made at the 05/19/05 Board of Selectmen's meeting and are considered unapproved until then. Corrections will be noted in the minutes of that meeting.

MINUTES - REGULAR MEETING - BOARD OF SELECTMEN
APRIL 21st, 2005
NEWFANE TOWN OFFICE

PRESENT:
Selectmen: Piet van Loon, Dan DeWalt, Patricia Halloran and Gary Katz.
Absent: Priscilla Cotton
Also Present: Fred Lawrence, Carolyn Katz, Eleanor Katz, Chris Williams, Ed Druke, Sr., David Clarkson, Ellie Applegate, Chris Petrak, Maria Rodman, Lisa Murch, John Spicer, Hermine and Charles Bergmann, Susan Dedell, Paul Dedell, Peter F. Lilienthal, IV, Robert Sofield, Claudia Sofield, and Doris Knechtel as Administrative Assistant.
1. CALL TO ORDER
The regular meeting was called to order by Chairman P. van Loon at 6:35 p.m.
2. ROAD BUSINESS
A. ROAD COMMISSIONER’S REPORT - (See attached report)
(1) Item #2 - P. van Loon has spoken with various state and regional personnel regarding mitigation and flooding problems concerning Smith Brook. The area in question behind the Town Office is in the flood area. As far as Newfane Hill Road (TH#20) and Upper Spring Hill (TH#23) are concerned, the town has talked with Paul Gould of VTRANS District #2. The Board should meet at the site again with property owners Scott Heller, David King and Tom Russell to hopefully come up with a solution to the drainage problem in that area.
(2) Item #3 - The hearing process for reclassifying or discontinuing a portion of New Road (TH#30) will be looked into. The actual length of road needs to be determined so that property owners involved can be notified of the possible hearing. It was also suggested that Board members may want to look at the site. A site visit is required as part of the hearing process. Motion was made by G. Katz and seconded by P. Halloran to ratify the action taken by the Road Foreman to close a section of New Road (TH#30) due to flooding damage. Unanimous.
(3) Item #4 - 2. D. ACCESS PERMIT
Motion was made by G. Katz and seconded by D. DeWalt to approve Access Permit #A05-08 submitted by Frank Suponski for property owner Frank and Doreen Krupski located on Toby Hill Road (TH#29) for a new residential access onto Tax Map Lot # C-023.3. An 18" culvert is required. Unanimous. Because the access has been installed before approval, an additional $50.00 penalty is to be assessed as per the Access Right of Way Policy.
(4) Item #6 - 2. F. DISCUSSION OF NEW TRUCK SPECIFICATIONS
Board members discussed the pros and cons regarding the proposed purchase and use of a tandem truck for the town of Newfane. Motion was made by D. DeWalt and seconded by P. Halloran to not go with the purchase of a tandem truck for the town of Newfane at this time. In favor: D. DeWalt, P. Halloran and P van Loon. Opposed: G. Katz. Motion passes.
2. B. ROAD FOREMAN’S REPORT - (No written report was submitted)
K. Bostrom was not in attendance at the meeting. (See RC report - Item #8)
2. E. DISCUSSION OF FLOOD DAMAGE
(1) Motion was made by P. Halloran and seconded by G. Katz to have the Selectboard sign the grant application (corrected form) for Town Highway Emergency Funds to assist the town with the costs for the recent flood damage of April 2 & 3. Unanimous.

2. C. EXCESS WEIGHT PERMITS
There was discussion about increasing the maximum excess weight limit allowed in Newfane from 60,000# to 80,000# for a truck and a trailer. The weight is distributed over a wider span. Enforcement of the overweight vehicles on town roads by either the Windham County Sheriff’s Department or the Department of Motor Vehicles is an ongoing issue. Motion was made by G. Katz and seconded by D. DeWalt to amend the Town Excess Weight Limit Policy to increase the maximum weight limit allowed on town roads and bridges from 60,000 lbs. to 80,000 lbs. Unanimous. Current permit holders will be notified.
Motion was made by G. Katz and seconded by P. Halloran to approve the following Excess Weight Permits as listed:
Contractor Vehicle Weights Certificate of Insurance
Camp Precast Concrete, Inc. 3 axle @ 80,000# Okay Yes
3 axle @ 80,000# Okay
4 axle @ 80,000# Okay

Harvey Plimpton Excavating 3 axle @ 60,000# Okay Yes
4 axle @ 69,000# Okay Unanimous.

2. G. DISCUSSION OF “ANCIENT” HIGHWAYS
Selectboard members discussed the memo from Windham Regional Commission concerning house bill H.334 dealing with “Ancient” roads. WRC is urging the Legislature to have a summer study committee review the issue with towns, the Agency of Transportation, VLCT, Agency of Natural Resources, Realtors, banks and title insurance companies before doing a sweeping discontinuance of old roads and trails. Motion was made by P. Halloran and seconded by D. DeWalt to have Chairman van Loon write a draft letter to the House Commerce Committee to state that the Newfane Selectboard endorses the Windham Regional Commission’s position on “Ancient” roads. Unanimous.
6. OTHER NEW BUSINESS
A. Motion was made by G. Katz and seconded by P. Halloran to hold a special meeting of the Newfane Selectboard and the Planning Commission to discuss the future work plan and schedule of the PC. Unanimous.
B. Motion was made by G. Katz and seconded P. Halloran to hold the regular meeting of the Newfane Selectboard on Wednesday, May 4th at 6:30 p.m. instead of Thursday, May 5th, as P. Halloran and D. DeWalt will not be able to attend the May 5th meeting. Unanimous.
3. SCHEDULED MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC
A. DISCUSSION OF BRIDGE #14 REPLACEMENT
The state has provided three configurations for the replacement of Bridge #14: on the same alignment with a temporary bridge (ML0); on a downstream alignment with a temporary bridge (ML1); and on a downstream alignment without the use of a temporary bridge (ML2). There is also another suggestion for replacing the bridge on a shifted alignment, as suggested by P. Lilienthal, that does not use a temporary bridge. P. Lilienthal would like to have the town give further consideration of his proposal that he has worked on with the state.
Various questions and concerns were discussed. A final decision needs to be made by the Selectboard so that the final plans can be done by the state. The process with the state for the final design of this bridge has been going on for more than a year. Previous suggestions have been incorporated into the design. The actual construction is not expected to occur until 2007 - 2008.

3. A. DISCUSSION OF BRIDGE #14 REPLACEMENT - (cont.)
The town will contact R. Whitcomb of VTrans about the following questions or changes:
(1) having a non-raised sidewalk rather than a raised sidewalk; (2) the required width of the bike lane (shoulder); (3) having a different pavement texture between the bike path and the travel portion of the highway; (4) approaches for a bike path (shoulders); and (5) the possibility of a three-way stop, that is adding a stop sign at the corner by the Lilienthal property on Dover Road (TH#2). The matter will be discussed at the meeting of Wednesday, May 4th.
3. B. DISCUSSION - CHARLES BERGMANN - ACT 250 PERMIT
Charles “Bud” Bergmann has recently received a decision from the Act 250 District #2 Commission that he shall submit a design for the proposed 1,850-foot road, which meets town road specifications, for his 9-lot development. C. Bergmann will be appealing the decision of the commission as he would like to construct a road with a sixteen-foot travel portion rather than the twenty-foot travel portion with two foot shoulders, on each side, as required by the town highway specifications. C. Bergmann explained the background of his proposed development to the “new” Selectboard members and his intent to prohibit lot owners by deed restrictions from asking the town to take over the road.
The town is asking for the road to be built to the town highway standards, which have been in existence since 1977, for safety reasons. Previous developers appearing before Act 250 for housing developments within Newfane have also been requested to build their roads to the town standards. There is the potential, even with deed restrictions that the property owners will request the town to be taken over. There will be an Act 250 hearing scheduled on the road issue by District #2 in the near future.
6. NEW BUSINESS - A. APPOINTMENTS
(1) LELAND & GRAY NEWFANE REPRESENTATIVE - No action.
(2) TRAFFIC CALMING COMMITTEE
Motion was made by D. DeWalt and seconded by P. Halloran to appoint Chris Petrak, Paul Dedell, Dan DeWalt, Peter Lilienthal, David Clarkson, Patricia Halloran and Walter Phelps to serve on the Newfane Traffic Calming Committee until March 2006. Unanimous.
4. UNSCHEDULED MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC
Chairman P. van Loon recused himself for the discussion regarding Bob Sofield and turned the meeting over to Vice-Chairman G. Katz.
A. Robert Sofield was in to complain that P. van Loon spoke to his real estate agent about the information contained in the advertisement for the sale of his property. R. Sofield felt that P van Loon should not have gone to the real estate agent under any circumstances. P. van Loon apologized for not calling R. Sofield about the matter. R. Sofield claims that according to his deed, he purchased 5 acres of property. According to documentation from the change in VT Route 30 and a letter (03/31/94) from surveyor, Ted Schreyer, the Sofield property is less than 2 acres. There is a dwelling and a business on the property. When P. van Loon was serving as Zoning Administrator, he learned that the business was being leased rather than being run by the owners as a home occupation. The Zoning Bylaw requires two acres for each use, and the Sofield’s do not have enough acreage for the residence and the leased commercial business. ZA, P. van Loon spoke to Mr. Sofield at the time and told him of the zoning violation, but did not cite him. If the business was still owned and being run by the property owners, there would be no violation.
The town has an obligation to report the situation to the current Zoning Administrator so that he can assess the matter and issue any violation letters that may be required.
11:30 p.m. - P. Van Loon returned to chair the rest of the meeting.

5. OLD BUSINESS
A. NEWFANE TRAFFIC ORDINANCE - No action.
B. PERSONNEL POLICY - No action.
5. C. FOLLOW-UP LIST - No discussion.
6. A. APPOINTMENTS
(1) LELAND & GRAY NEWFANE REPRESENTATIVE - No action.
6. B. EDUCATION FUND RESOLUTION
A Resolution regarding the use of the Education Fund has been drafted for the Selectboard to consider. Motion was made by G. Katz and seconded by P. Halloran to have the Selectboard adopt and sign the Resolution as proposed. Unanimous. The cover letter will indicate that although the Newfane Selectboard applauds the efforts to support programs for the special education services for prisoners and adult education and literary services for adult learners, the Board feels strongly that the State Education Fund is to be used to make payments to school district and supervisory unions for the support of education only.
6. C. SCHEDULE MEETINGS WITH BOARDS, TOWNS AND AGENCIES
No discussion.
7. ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT’S REPORT - (See attached report)
A. Item #4 - The AA is planning to take vacation time every Monday beginning on May 9th and two full weeks of vacation time during the last two weeks in June.
B. All other items were informational and did not require any action by the Selectboard.
8. MINUTES
Minutes of 03/17/05 - Corrections - Page #2, 3. A. ¶ 3 - motion to read “to have the Newfane Selectboard write a letter to the Newfane Representatives on the Route 30 Committee which indicates that the funding suggested is inadequate for the traffic impact on the towns caused by the Stratton Mountain activities. The Board would prefer that funding be provided on an on-going basis for additional law enforcement activities at appropriate times.” Motion was made by P. Halloran and seconded by G. Katz to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of 03/17/05, as corrected. Unanimous.
9. CORRESPONDENCE
A. There has been some E-mail correspondence between one of the Selectboard members and the Delinquent Tax Collector. E-mail of that type should be sent to all Board members as it is a public document.
B. The town has received information from VTrans regarding the 2006 Enhancement Program grant application process. Eligible activities include new sidewalks, bike paths, historic preservation, environmental mitigation and more. A pre-application letter is due on June 3rd and the complete application is due by Friday, August 12 at 4:30 p.m. D. DeWalt took the application to review for a possible project related to traffic calming.
C. The annual Historic Preservation Conference will be held in Bennington on May 6th. The cost to attend the conference is $45.00 per person.
D. The report for the Windham County Sheriff’s Department activities from 03/13/05 through 03/26/05 has been received.
E. A letter of thanks to the Selectboard and Newfane residents for their support and brochures have been received from the Gathering Place, an adult day care program.
F. The town has received a copy of the Windham Solid Waste District audit results of the Financial statements ending June 30, 2005.


10. PAY ORDERS
Motion was made by P. Halloran and seconded by G. Katz to approve the Newfane Payroll and Accounts Payable Warrants for the following amounts:
04/13/05 Payroll $ 4,067.80
04/20/05 Payroll $ 3,038.74
04/18/05 Acct.’s Payable #20A $ 150,000.00
04/22/05 Acct.’s Payable #20 $ 30,659.86 Unanimous.
IRS Electronic Federal Payroll Tax Payments
04/13/05 $ 1,595.31
04/20/05 $ 1,414.01
04/06/05 $ 1,104.28

11. EXECUTIVE SESSION - IF NEEDED
No matters came before the Selectboard that required the need of an Executive Session.
12. ADJOURNMENT
Motion was made by D. DeWalt and seconded by P. Halloran to adjourn the Regular Meeting of the Board at 12:20 a.m. Unanimous.

Doris A. Knechtel
Administrative Assistant
Newfane Board of Selectmen

Posted: Town Clerk's Office, Newfane Store, Williamsville General Store, and South Newfane General Store & Deli.
www.newfanevt.com


ROAD COMMISSIONER’S REPORT - 04/20/05

1. Spring Grading
Regular grading of the roads is behind schedule this Spring because the priority has been on finishing the work related to the recent flood. That work should be completed and regular grading should being this Friday.
2. Mitigation
I spoke with Ed Druke about efforts related to Smith Brook and also the Newfane Hill Road/Upper Spring Hill Road area. Kurt indicated that Piet was going to contact the State about Smith Brook. Ed suggests a follow-up meeting with the residents of Newfane Hill/Spring Hill. This could also be an opportunity for our new Board members to get some first hand experience. Kurt will also be ready to participate whenever we set such a meeting.
3. “New Road”
New Road is currently closed and the crew has put up a “Road Close” sign. Part of the road, which does not serve any residences, was severely damaged by flooding. Kurt noted that repair would be very costly and labor intensive. He suggests that the Board, rather than having an unused section of road repaired, consider “throwing up” this road. We probably should go out to take a look at it and consider appropriate next steps.
4. Access Permits
Kurt and I will need to look at the Enderle access permit sites next week so that we can offer a recommendation to the Board. On the Suponski permit application, Kurt has spoken with Frank, who has installed the recommended 18 inch culvert. We recommend approval of this permit.
5. Plugged Culverts
The Board received a letter from Neal Carter and Carol Gallagher about a plugged culvert. The culvert is now clear. This problem is representative of plugged culvert issues throughout Newfane: leaves and debris get washed out of the woods and clog up the culverts. This is a regular maintenance issue. The ditch/grading concern raised by Neal and Carol should be taken care of as the crew moves from flood damage repair to grading.
6. Tandem Truck
Kurt has checked with Dover, Rockingham, and Westminster about their experiences with tandem trucks. All were very positive and think that is the way to go. Dover has a number of tandems and will be purchasing another. Kurt would appreciate a decision from the Board as soon as possible so that we can get the purchasing process started.
7. Request for Advice
David Clarkson asked if we could offer his neighbor some advice about putting in a driveway culvert. Kurt will take a look at it next week and get in touch with the property owner with his suggestions.
8. Acting Road Foreman
While Kurt is out the rest of this week, Todd will be acting foreman. Kurt is coming in each morning to get things going. He’ll be back full-time on Monday.

Gary Katz, Road Commissioner

To: Newfane Selectboard MEMORANDUM
From: Doris A. Knechtel
Subject: Administrative Assistant’s Report
Date: April 21, 2005

1. I spoke with Tom Lackey of VTrans regarding the width of the current and future Bridge #14. Currently it has two -11 foot travel portions with two, two foot “sidewalks” for a total of 26 feet from rail to rail. Proposed Alternate ML1 would have two -10 foot travel portions with two, three foot shoulders for bicycles (26 feet) with a five foot sidewalk for a total of 31 feet, rail to rail.

2. I spoke with Ralph Paradis about Bridge #47 on Hunter Brook Road (TH#32) and sent him a copy of the agreement with the town regarding the shoring up of the bridge. The supports are gone as a result of the recent flooding. He is no longer planning to use the bridge as he has in the past and will be moving out of the area. There is someone else who will be interested in entering into an agreement with the town to add supports under the bridge, but he did not tell me who that may be.

3. I have contacted Paul Dedell, Peter Lilienthal and David Clarkson and they are all interested in continuing to serve as members of a newly formed Traffic Calming Committee.

4. Vacation time.

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