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MINUTES OF THE NEWFANE SELECTBOARD
REGULAR MEETING
NOVEMBER 1, 2007
TOWN OFFICES
NEWFANE, VERMONT

PRESENT

Selectboard members: Dan Dewalt, Joe Mandell, Peter Rysz, Guy Wachtel

Also Present: Shannon Meckle, Administrative Assistant; Christopher Williams, Road Commissioner; Gunther Garbe, Planning Commission Chair; Ed Druke; Piet van Loon; Judy Egan; Brian Donovan; Gary Katz

The meeting was called to order at 6:30 p.m. by Joe Mandell

MINUTES

The minutes of the October 18, 2007 regular board meeting were reviewed. The following changes were made:

Under Bridges: It should be noted that the major repairs to the bridge need to wait until school gets out in June, so that the buses won’t have to use the detour.
Under W.W. Building Supply: It should be noted that W.W. Building Supply will need to carry an insurance policy; and there should be some sort of clause protecting the town from liability.

Peter Rysz made a motion to approve the minutes with the amendments. Guy Wachtel seconded the motion. The minutes were approved with listed revisions, unanimously.

ROAD BUSINESS

Road Foreman’s Report: Todd Lawley was not present at the meeting. His report was read by Peter Rysz. Please see attached report.

Road Commissioner’s Report: Christopher Williams reported that the Highway Crew has been doing grading and general maintenance of the Roads. He noted that the Beetlestone Bridge has been repaired and it looks good. He also reported that the bearing block has been replaced on the Covered Bridge; however the plates have not been bolted down yet.

Christopher reported to the Selectboard that he’s received approximately 25 complaints regarding the stop sign that was installed at the Arch Bridge; and in general the sign situation in town is getting out of hand. It was noted by the Administrative Assistant that the notice has been posted regarding the Traffic Ordinance revision, and the residents have until December 2nd to petition for a hearing.

A discussion ensued regarding signage in town, as well as traffic issues. Christopher reported that there’s a one-ton truck on Grimes Hill Road that has been parked there since the beginning of the week, and it’s interfering with the travel lane. It was suggested that the town have Todd Lawley contact the owner and ask him to remove it. Then, if it isn’t removed, call the Sheriff’s Department.

Radway Hill Road: Peter Rysz noted that the board should get Mike Fitzpatrick and Mercede together to get this project rolling.

Excess Weight Permits: Savage Trucking applied for an overweight permit. After much discussion regarding the process of applying and reviewing, and approving overweight permits, Peter Rysz made a motion to approve the application for 69,000 pounds and deny the application for 99,000 pounds. Guy Wachtel seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

UNSCHEDULED MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC

Planning Commission: Gunther reported that the Planning Commission is about half way through the revision of the Zoning Bylaws. John Feifel and Gunther will not be running again in March; however Gunther stated that he won’t abandon the project of rewriting the Zoning Bylaws, so perhaps he would take a one year term.

There also may be other members that will want to step down, so if anyone’s interested, please let the Planning Commission.

Joe Mandell asked Gunther what the process is for suggesting edits to the Zoning Bylaws. Gunther gave an overview of the process and noted that anyone with an idea should come to the meeting and present their ideas. The Planning Commission meets the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month at 7:00 p.m.

SCHEDULED MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC

Excess Weight Permit Review Sub-Committee: Brian Donovan was present at the meeting to offer his support for the town to review overweight permit applications. A lengthy discussion ensued about the process of reviewing and approving Excess Weight Permits. After this discussion, Peter Rysz made a motion to allow Judy Egan and Brian Donovan to form a sub-committee to gather information on this subject. Guy Wachtel seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

NEW BUSINESS

Electrical Update at Town Offices: Peter Rysz spoke about the new surveillance camera hooked into the Town Offices for the recycling bins. There are no outlets in the attic of the town offices, and there needs to be for the cameras. Also, there is a lack of electrical outlets in the town office, as evidenced by the many power strips being used for equipment. Shannon will make a list of things that need to be done and contact Norman Lamoria.

OLD BUSINESS

W.W. Building Supply: The draft lease with W.W. Building Supply will be looked at next meeting when each member has had a chance to read it, and after it’s been sent to W.W. Building Supply.

Old County Road: Joe reported that this issue is now in the hands of Trooper Loyzelle from the Vermont State Police. It was suggested that such discussion wait until Executive Session, as it is a legal matter. Christopher Williams stated that the only issue with the trail improvements he had is that there is a 12” culvert installed, and it is not an acceptable culvert. It should be a minimum of 15,” similar to the one near the Pikes’ driveway.

Rescue Inc./Vernon’s Invitation: This discussion was tabled until later in the meeting, when the Newfane Representative to Rescue, Inc. Robert Holden could be present.
Gunther Garbe inquired about the tickets that have been sent thus far to the Sorrell property owners, as it looks like there is another car added to the property. Shannon will look into this and issue a ticket, in addition to the other tickets that will be issued in the near future.

Peter Rysz noted that while we are holding the remaining payment for Zaluzny’s, the following issues were noted:

  • The difference in paving prices should have been reflected and it wasn’t.
  • The original catch basin was proposed with a sump, however they decided in the end to install a catch basin without a sump. Why was there no difference in cost reflected?
Shannon will write a letter to Zaluzny’s and SVE Associates, inquiring about these items.

Peter Rysz reported on a truck that has been parked at the intersection of Dover Road and Auger Hole Road. He was told that it would be out of there last Wednesday, but as of this evening, it was still there.

The board quickly discussed FEMA and whether the town has received at least a partial payment thus far. The Administrative Assistant reported that she had spoke with the FEMA official, and the check was “on its way.” Peter Rysz enquired whether the board could write a letter to Congress expressing it’s frustration with this process. Joe agreed to draft a letter for the board’s review; and also reiterated that any correspondence to FEMA, should now be sent via Return Receipt, in order to avoid any miscommunications.

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT’S REPORT

Shannon reported that Norman Lamoria had come and put in all the energy efficient lightbulbs in the town offices. So far, none of them have blown. They are good for approximately 3,000 hours.

Shannon expressed her concerns regarding re-bidding insurance policies at this juncture, with the budgeting happening next month, along with the Town Report and Town Meeting following. After a lengthy discussion, the board decided to put an ad in the newspaper soliciting proposals, as the town reserves the right to reject any proposal, and if it seems as though time is an issue, the board reserves the right to decide to renew with VLCT.

Shannon passed on a suggestion from John Spicer regarding the white “stop lines” that are usually painted at the point where cars should stop at stop signs. He suggested one for the covered bridge stop sign and at the Arch Bridge. The discussion was tabled until such time that Todd could be present for the meeting, and until the Arch Bridge stop sign is past the hearing period.

Rescue Inc./Vernon Invitation: This discussion was revisited. Vernon has invited all Rescue, Inc. member towns’ selectboards to a joint forum to discuss areas of concern and the future of Rescue, Inc. The board members’ attendance was discussed at length; after such discussion, Joe Mandell and Peter Rysz agreed to attend the meeting. Discussion ensued about the possibility of Robert Holden’s attendance as well. No other action was taken regarding this topic.

CORRESPONDENCE: There was no correspondence to discuss.

EXECUTIVE SESSION

Peter Rysz made a motion to enter Executive Session. Guy Wachtel seconded the motion. Upon unanimous vote, the board entered Executive Session at 8:15 p.m.

Peter Rysz made a motion to come out of Executive Session at 8:40 p.m. Dan Dewalt seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous.

A letter to the Suponskis and Independent Partners was signed by the board, and a copy will go to Trooper Loyzelle and Richard Perra, Esq.

The board revisited the issue of re-bidding the insurance. It was the sense of the board that with this being the first year for this Administrative Assistant is working on the budget and the Town Report and Town meeting, that perhaps rebidding the insurance should wait until next year. Joe Mandell suggested that the board write a letter to those companies that have been working on a proposal, that if there proposal is prepared, we will take it under advisement however, we cannot devote more staff time to this project with the budget and town meeting in the near future.

PAY WARRANTS:

Peter Rysz made a motion to approve the pay warrants as presented:

Payroll: 10/24 $3,122.28
10/31 $3,360.15
11/02 $ 994.45

IRS Electronic Payment: 10/22 – 10/24 $1,120.41
10/27 – 11/2 $1,289.50

The motion passed unanimously.

Peter Rysz made a motion to adjourn at 9:10 p.m. Dan Dewalt seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

Respectfully submitted,

Shannon Meckle
Administrative Assistant

Posted At: Town Clerk's Office, Newfane Store, Williamsville/South Newfane Post Office, and South Newfane General Store & Deli. www.newfanevt.com (after approval)
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