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JANUARY 17, 2008

Selectboard members: Joe Mandell, Dan Dewalt, Peter Rysz, Guy Wachtel, Ellen Darrow
Also Present: Shannon Meckle, Administrative Assistant; Ed Druke, Michael O’Donnell, Aiden O’Donnell
The meeting was called to order at 5:30 p.m. by Selectboard Chair, Joe Mandell.

At this time, the budget portion of the meeting was held. The board looked at the Special Appropriations portion of the budget and filled in the remaining numbers. A discussion ensued surrounding capital funds Much of the confusion, Peter stated, was due to underfunding on day-to-day operational items. The Town will vote on placing a sum of money directly into the capital fund.

January 3, 2008 Regular Meeting: Dan Dewalt made a motion to approve the minutes as written. Peter Rysz seconded. The minutes were approved unanimously.
January 3, 2008 Budget Meeting: Peter Rysz made a motion to approve the minutes as written. Dan Dewalt seconded. The minutes were approved with 4 in favor and Ellen Darrow abstaining.
January 8, 2008 Budget Meeting: The board asked to have the sentence regarding pay increases removed from the minutes. Peter Rysz made a motion to approve the minutes as amended. Guy Wachtel seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Road Foreman’s Report: See Attached Report.
Guy Wachtel read the Road Forman’s report for Todd, as he was not present for the meeting.
Discussion ensued regarding mud posting and the requirements for correct signs. The discussion was tabled the next meeting, when Todd would be available.

Highway: Mike O’Donnell approached the board regarding his temporary employment. Todd’s recommendation was that the Town continues to employ Mike for 20 hours per week. Mike added that he enjoyed working for the town, and felt he would be a good asset.

Discussion ensued regarding how the town will pay for these extra hours, and what line item it will come out of.
The consensus of the board was that they should meet with Todd and discuss this matter further. The board thanked Mike for his efforts and good work.

Ed Druke approached the board regarding Ancient Roads and a possible committee. Discussion ensued. No action was taken.

No members were scheduled.

Mail Boxes: Shannon presented the board with the results of the research that she had done regarding when the town is responsible for replacing a downed mailbox and when they aren’t. The mailboxes should be four feet from the edge of a travel lane, which is hard to determine when dealing with gravel roads. Dan Dewalt made a motion to offer to move the homeowner’s mailbox down to the group of other mailboxes just down the road, which never seem to be affected by snow, contingent upon the landowner’s permission. Guy Wachtel seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. The post office and the landowner will need to be contacted.

Salary vs. Hourly: The elected officials in the Town would like the issue of salary vs. hourly clarified. The understanding was that the townspeople voted to have the elected officials paid salary at last year’s Town Meeting, but they have been paid hourly thus far. This is something that is not in the Selectboard’s purview, and would have to be voted on at Town Meeting.

Dan Dewalt made a motion to place the following article in the Warning for 2007 Town Meeting: “Should the town pay its elected officials by an hourly rate, or by salary?” Guy Wachtel seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

VELCO: Peter Rysz reported back the results of the meeting that he and Dan attended with a VELCO representative. Among items discussed were security, electric rates, cell phone antennas on the power poles, traffic, and energy conservation. Cell phone antennas can be placed on the power lines, though maintenance can become a problem near high voltage lines. Security measures will be in place, although the substation will not be a manned station. Energy conservation is under the direction of CVPS through Efficiency Vermont. Property taxes were a complicated issue, without a concrete answer. The property for the substation will be purchased outright. VELCO is currently in negotiations with the landowner. The gravel that’s currently in the pit will be needed for construction. Electric rate decreases will not be likely as the power generated will not be serving this area. Joe thanked Peter and Dan for their time in attending this meeting.

Town Report Planning: The board looked over the items compiled for the Town Report. It was the consensus of the board that a color photo should be used for the dedication. Wording for the dedication was discussed. It was also decided that the photographs of the flood damage should be near the Selectboard report.

Dan Dewalt made a motion to authorize an article in the Warning as to whether the town would like to switch to recycled paper for the town’s general office use. Guy Wachtel seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Guy Wachtel made a motion to approve the pay warrants as presented. Peter Rysz seconded the motion.
Pay Orders: 01/08/08 $1,012.50 Payroll: 01/09/08 $4,557.96
01/15/08 $100,000.00 01/16/08 $3,614.43
01/17/08 $318,470.37 01/18/08 $ 344.71
$419,482.87 $8,517.10

IRS Electronic Payment: 01/09/08: $1,654.60
01/16/08: $1,205.56
01/18/08 $ 64.39

The motion passed unanimously.
Peter Rysz made a motion to adjourn at 9:15 p.m. Guy Wachtel 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. (after approval

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Route 30, P.O. Box 36, Newfane VT 05345, Tel. (802) 365-7772

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