Board of Selectmen
March 5, 2012
Community Hall Annex
Present: Joseph R. Becker, Chairman; Sheila H. Dibb, Leroy C. Clark, Peter Letsky, Clerk and Nancy M. Macaruso, Secretary. Michael Pantos arrived at 7:50 pm.
Mr. Clark moved to sign Treasury warrant #18 and payroll. Mr. Letsky seconded. Vote unanimous.
Mr. Clark moved to accept the minutes from February 21, 2012 as presented. Ms. Dibb seconded. Vote 3 to 1 with Mr. Becker abstaining.
Mr. Clark moved to accept the minutes from February 27, 2012 as presented. Ms. Dibb seconded. Vote unanimous.
Mr. Clark moved to accept the executive session minutes from February 28, 2012 as presented. Ms. Dibb seconded. Vote unanimous.
Two jobs submitted to Mass Highway for reimbursement (Chapter 90). Future work to be determined.
Putnam Park – Wires on the ground have to be moved before any clean up can begin. Mr. Kellaher will determine who owns the lines by calling in the meter number.
Primary Building – No response on RFP, no bids. Discussion on demolition, silent auction, moving the boiler, etc. RFP needed for demo. Lots of items should be removed prior to demolition. The advertisement bill for T & G for RFP will be paid from the primary building article.
Wood House water abatement – Sewer portion abated on hot water heater bursting. The Historical Commission paid for the repair and would like that amount deducted from the water charge.
Water abatement for resident at 124 Maple Avenue - Mr. Clark moved to not grant the abatement. Mr. Letsky seconded. Vote unanimous.
Electric Bids – Prices are going down. Hampshire Power is coming in to discuss a lower rate (locked in 3 years) with DPW Superintendent. He has inquired with the WRSD and will call Bay Path and the Library Trustees.
Discussion on grants. The Chief has advertised and interviewed 12 candidates for the part-time positions. The Chief is recommending the appointment of three: John Songy, Sean Cooney and Mai Grover. Mr. Letsky moved to appoint the candidates subject to the following: a) completion of one-year probation period, b) completion of a medical & psychological exam, c) completion of the Comm. Of MA physical abilities test and d) completion of the Rutland Police Field Training Program – John Songy, Sean Cooney & Mai Grover. Mr. Clark seconded. Vote unanimous.
Chairman Becker read a prepared statement (attached) announcing Fire Chief Thomas P. Ruchala’s retirement as of February 28, 2012 with no further comment once announcement has been made. Mr. Becker extended the Board’s sincere appreciation and gratitude and wish him a long happy, healthy retirement. He was an active member of the Fire Department since 1965.
Management structure: Police chief has been holding administrative and management oversight/responsibility of the department in the chief’s absence and has had full cooperation of all staff. Commanding officers are responsible for command at emergency scenes. Mr. Becker recommended current structure remain status quo thru the search process. Captain Seth Knipe stated that per Chapter 148 (Strong Chief), the Selectmen must vote an acting police chief tonight, otherwise day to day operations fall on the BOS Chairman. Deputy Chief Jeff Lowe suggested the fire personnel meet separately with the Board. Lengthy discussion. Mr. Clark moved to have the Chairman of the Board of Selectmen be appointed as acting fire chief. Mr. Letsky seconded for discussion. Vote unanimous.
Ms. Dibb moved to authorize the Acting Fire Chief/Board of Selectmen Chairman’s recommendation to delegate to the police chief all daily operations in the fire department and administrative authority of that role to continue as per the current structure. Mr. Letsky seconded. Vote unanimous.
Discussion on a search committee. Will solicit local letters of interest from residents on website and cable channel. (5 resident and 2 non-resident). Meeting set for March 15th at 6:30 pm for criteria setting.
Seth Knipe announced that the Union has signed off on the contract. The Rutland Professional Firefighters Association Local number has changed to 4878. He thanked the Board and the Finance Committee for the support of the article for turnout gear at the last town meeting.
6:30 Public hearing on Laying out of Carlsons Way – Len Gengel came before the Board to inform of the road’s completion. DPW has one issue remaining as does the Planning Board with two issues remaining. Neither issue can be addressed until spring. Mr. Gengel guaranteed that the work would be completed. After some discussion, Mr. Letsky moved to continue the hearing until Tuesday, April 17, 2012 at 6:30 pm. Mr. Clark seconded. Vote unanimous.
Mr. Clark brought up discussion on temporarily having someone replace an elected individual who is out on extended leave. No one is sure it can be done. The Board will discuss allowing remote participation in meetings at the next BOS meeting. Addison Redfield questioned whether a temporary leave of absence would allow a temporary fill in; no one had an answer.
Mr. Clark moved to allow a plumbing fee waiver for the Historical Commission at the Wood House. Mr. Letsky seconded. Vote unanimous.
Resignation from Melissa Callendar from Recreation: Ms. Dibb moved to accept the resignation of Melissa Callendar effective February 4, 2012 and thanked her for her service. Mr. Clark seconded. Vote unanimous.
Mr. Clark would like to look into the Ambulance becoming an enterprise fund instead of general government. Captain Knipe suggested having it become a receipts reserved for appropriation account. Some discussion. Mr. Clark and Mr. Pantos will meet with the Town Accountant to discuss further.
Assistant Emergency Medical Coordinators – Mark Briand and Joe Caven. Mr. Knipe will ask Mr. Caven if he’d step up to serve in Coordinator’s position formerly held by the Fire Chief.
Short discussion on Naquag renovations. Work moving forward smoothly. Town Accountant has successfully submitted for first reimbursement; expected back soon.
Solar Pilot / Tax – Mr. Letsky is still working on with the Assessor’s office. They would like to make sure land stays on the tax rolls.
Pool wall repair – being advertised in the Landmark for two weeks. Bid opening March 15th at 2 pm at DPW. Bids will be received until that time.
Regional Selectmen’s meeting Thursday, March 8th in Princeton regarding the task force.
Lengthy discussion on WRSD budget.
Mr. Pantos shared Bay Path’s budget increase of 2.28% for next year.
Ms. Dibb moved to enter into executive session for Reason #3: To discuss strategy with respect to collective bargaining or litigation if an open meeting may have a detrimental effect on the bargaining or litigating position of the public body and the chair so declares and to return to open session for adjournment purposes only. Mr. Pantos seconded. Clark aye, Letsky aye, Dibb aye, Pantos aye, Becker aye.
Mr. Clark moved to adjourn. Ms. Dibb seconded. Vote unanimous. Meeting adjourned at 8:25 pm.
Nancy M. Macaruso, Secretary
Board of Selectmen