Board of Selectmen Meeting Minutes & Agendas

Mar 23, 2020

Board of Selectmen Minutes - March 23, 2020


 

TOWN OF LITTLETON
MONDAY, MARCH 23, 2020
5:00 PM
BOARD OF SELECTMEN’S MEETING
OPERA HOUSE TOWER ROOM
AGENDA

 

 

Present:  Town Manager Andrew Dorsett, Chairman Carrie Gendreau, Vice Chairman Chad Stearns, Selectman Andrew Dorsett, Executive Secretary Ceil Stubbings

 

Others Present:  Chad Miller (FD), Jim Alden, Doug Damko (PW), Andrea Day,

 

Dorsett called the meeting to order at 5:01 PM.

 

Pledge of Allegiance

 

Board Organization Vote:
Dorsett stated this is the first meeting of the Board after the election.  We now have a new board member and a chairman needs to be appointed.  After the chairman is appointed he will turn the meeting over to that person.  Stearns made the motion to nominate Carrie Gendreau as the Chairperson.  Emerson seconded the motion.  Motion passed 2-0.  Gendreau wanted to thank all of the people who worked the polls at Town Meeting and to those who put in all the work into the budget.  She also wanted to thank Franco Rossi who served on the board for three years.  Gendreau offered a big welcome to Roger Emerson as the new selectman. 

 

Gendreau nominated Chad Stearns as Vice Chairman.  Emerson seconded the motion.  Motion passed 2-0.  Gendreau said they also need a nomination as the Ex-Officio to the Planning Board.  Historically it is the new board member.  Gendreau nominated Chad Stearns as the Ex-Officio to the Planning Board.  Emerson seconded the motion.  Motion passed 2-0. 

Appointments:

Corrine Casadden – SAU 84 Interim School Superintendent

Town & SAU 84 Safety Collaboration

Dorsett said that Corrine Casadden had planned on presenting the proposed collaboration.  Dorsett suggested they pass over this for now and come back to it if she becomes available.

 

Doug Damko, Public Works Director – Andrea Day, Dufresne Group
             
  Asset Management Plan for Littleton Wastewater Collection System
                Subarea 5 Sewer and Storm Improvements Project.
Dorsett said there are multiple items they are going to be addressing.  The wastewater collection system and asset management plan.  There will also be a discussion on Mill Street to look for direction on what is the best way to go. Day and Damko provided a thorough presentation.  Gendreau said the Town did not plan on COVID-19 having in effect closing businesses. She would like to see if we can extend the time we can use the $140,000 that is available for the Mill Street project to a later date.  Her concern is that the businesses will need time to recoup.  Emerson agreed and said it’s a hard time for them and some businesses may not survive.  He feels the project should be pushed back to 2021.  Stearns said this is not the right time with the pandemic.  We need to support these businesses.  It would do nothing for us if we lost half of the businesses on Mill Street.  Dorsett said that with the pandemic this might be the best time because the businesses are closed.  Jim Alden said it is not a good time.  Dorsett said they were also wondering if the work could be done in stages to allow access.  They also explored the concept of night work.  Andrea Day said the funds we have on hand have to be used by August.  Gendreau asked if they could get an extension.  Day said she could ask but it was based on the close out of the project. 

 

Andrea Day said they looked at night work a couple of years ago and found that it took double the time to get the work done and doubled the cost by $75,000 to $80,000.  Dorsett said there is some criticism for us looking at this but it was being looked at before COVID-19.  Stearns said he does not think they should move forward at this time.  There is still plenty of planning they could do.  Stearns said the handout that Doug presented closed the road all day for five or six weeks.  That needs to be worked on with the stakeholders.  He can’t imagine what would happen to the businesses if Mill Street were closed.  Gendreau said we hadn’t planned on COVID-19 but all of us have to make adjustments.  Jim Alden asked if there was a resolution on this.  Gendreau said they are not going to make a decision because they don’t have enough information and due to what is going on.  Jim Alden said the businesses need a decision now.  This couldn’t be handled more horribly.  We need a decision right now.  The best decision is to walk away from it. It is not the time.  The board of selectmen needs to show some leadership.  Right now kill it.  You shouldn’t leave the businesses twisting in the wind for however long you need.  Gendreau said they don’t have enough information right now to make a decision.  Alden said doing it this way will put people out of business.  How much more information do you need?  Gendreau said they are waiting for more information from Andrea.  Alden asked what information are you waiting for.  Gendreau said they are waiting if the work can be done in late fall or possibly 2021.  None of us have enough answers right now to make a decision.  Alden said that what you are putting the taxpayers, business owners and property owners is inexcusable.  Gendreau moved onto the wastewater treatment plant asset management presentation. 

 

Andrea Day and Doug Damko provided a presentation on this topic.   Day said they are looking for ways to make the plant function better along with the costs associated with the efforts.  The plan includes ways for the plant to serve the Town for the next twenty years.  The estimate for the engineering study is $72,400.  We have me with rural development.  We talked about a potential $30,000 grant.  She felt they were fairly positive in our getting the grant.  Day then presented the preliminary engineering report for the wastewater treatment plant.  Dorsett said that for the board to make a motion in support of that.  Dorsett said they are taking information from the asset management plant the cost for the plan is estimated to be $72,400 and we anticipate to get a $30,000 grant.  What we need from the board is the authorization to spend up to $72,400 from the sewer fund.  Stearns made the motion to expend up to $72,400 from the sewer fund to conduct the wastewater treatment plant preliminary project.  Emerson seconded the motion.  Motion passed 3-0. 

 

Day presented the cost for a septic treatment unit.  Day said it would be better to wait before we present this to the board. 

 

Dr. Duffy from Littleton Regional Hospital said the community as a whole are holding up pretty well.  We believe the amount of COVID-19 is actually pretty low.  Right now the social distancing is working.  We are connected with the state emergency center.  No one gets into the building without being screened.  Testing takes anywhere between four and five days. 

Gendreau and the board thanked him for the information. 

 

Chad Miller said they had a meeting with department heads to coordinate our efforts.  We ordered additional cleaning supplies and PPE. Both chiefs are involved with daily conference calls.  Dorsett said we put out a press release to the public that all town buildings are closed to the public.  We are open as usual, you just have to do it by phone or email.  The police department will go with EMS.  If they show up on the scene they will not go inside they will stay in the car in case they are needed. 

 

Chief Joe Mercieri provided an update of the efforts they are putting forth due to the pandemic.  We have established a procedure if a first responder is exposed to the virus.  Any employee who has a temperature will be asked to go home.  We now have employee id’s for everyone to identify themselves when responding to an incident.  Stearns asked what the procedure for people to drop off donations of hand sanitizers and other items.  Mercieri said the procedure is simple, just put the items in a box or a bag and go to one of the department doors and someone will assist you. 

Mercieri said they were looking at their shelter policies and working with the clergy.  Chad Miller has been working the NH Community Health. 

 

Chief Paul Smith said that the interim school superintendent is looking to get a school resource officer.  Smith said this needs to be looked into.  Gendreau asked how long ago it has been since we had an SRO.  Smith thinks it was dissolved in 2010 due to funding.  Smith said he didn’t believe we had the support of the board at the time.  Smith said he will be meeting with the Town Manager and both boards to come up with a proposal.  The board thanked him for his input. 

 

Town Manager’s Report:
Ratification of Tax Credit Certification Form

Dorsett said we submitted an application for a tax credit certification for the River District Phase Two Project.  Phase One includes the purchase of the Murro parcel.  Phase Two includes the reconstruction of a barn structure on that parcel to a community event facility.  It also addresses landscaping on the site.   Stearns made the motion to authorize and approve the ratification of the tax credit certification form.  Gendreau seconded the motion.  Motion passed 3-0.

 

    
EMS Ambulance Service Fund

Chad Miller said the new ambulance is in service and it is working very well.  Miller said they were on the frontline even before they named the virus.  They had transported a patient from a care facility to the hospital.  The person had all the signs and symptoms and had travelled from China.  They did a very good job, they got back to the station when we received another call.  We had to make some really tough decisions as to whether the ambulance had been disinfected enough.  We had two victims of assault with potentially a third that needed medical treatment.  He felt they made the right decisions but it really stressed the system.  Now with COVID-19 there is better guidance on how to decontaminate an ambulance.  If we have a mechanical failure during the pandemic he does not know how willing communities would be to loan us equipment like this.  The company they will be getting the second used ambulance from was willing to hold it until tonight when they knew a decision would be made on it.  Gendreau asked if was already to go. Miller said it is not ready to go they need to make some modifications to it.  After the modifications are made it will need to be inspected by the state.  He estimates it will be on the road in about three weeks.  Stearns asked if this would increase the revenues due to the ability to make transfers.  Stearns asked how this would affect the budget’s bottom line.  Dorsett said it would not affect the budget. Miller said they billed about $350,000 up to February.  Miller said that in the next couple of months we should have more accurate numbers of what we are actually making.  Emerson asked what the total cost would be after it is all setup.  Miller said there is the vehicle and the equipment that goes inside of it.  The vehicle and the equipment is about $300,000 if we were to go out and buy a new one today.  Emerson said the reason he was asking the one we have now was for $413,000.  Miller said they purchased an ambulance and the equipment to go inside of it.  We got as much as we could of the equipment for the second ambulance.  The last remaining pieces are the ambulance and a couple of other items.  The ambulance with the equipment we need is $90,789.  Dorsett said we are asking for $70,000 from the ambulance service fund.  Miller said they were asking for $70,000 to be withdrawn from the EMS Revolving fund and the remainder will come out of the fire department budget.  Emerson said he didn’t realize the equipment had already been purchased for the second ambulance.  Emerson said he would like more information.  Gendreau said time is of the essence to make a decision or we take time to let Emerson get more information to be up to speed.  Dorsett said they really need that second ambulance to keep any downtime minimum. 

 

Gendreau asked if they were comfortable to make a motion.  Stearns said he was originally the one who voted against this, but he has been pleasantly surprised with the outcome. .Stearns made the motion to expend $70,000 from the EMS Revolving Fund with the remainder of the $90,789 to come from the Fire Department Budget.  Emerson seconded the motion.  Motion passed 3-0.

Greenup Day – April 18, 2020
Gendreau reminded people that Greenup Day was coming up this coming Saturday.  She said to contact Wilkins for more details.  The Police Department will have information on how to deal with used needles and one pots if they come upon them.

Old Business:
 
Crane Street

Horizons Engineer Andy Nadow and Doug Damko and Mr. Greenlaw have been working together to do some additional research.  Andy’s research is now complete.  The research has revealed that Mr. Greenlaw’s understanding of his boundary lines were misunderstood.  It appears the error occurred in mapping some years ago.  Mr. Greenlaw was a little belligerent with the results of the survey. No action is necessary due to the error being found.


New Business:
Glenwood Cemetery Policy during Coronavirus Pandemic
After a brief discussion by the board Stearns made the motion to approve the Glenwood Cemetery Policy as presented.  Emerson seconded the motion.  Motion passed 3-0.

 

Dorsett said there is a page dedicated to the COVID-19.  If you go to the page there are quite a few resources. It will be updated regularly as new information comes in.  We have also created a Town of Littleton Facebook Page that will also have the same information and other information that would be useful to the public and business owners.

 

Stearns made the motion to adjourn.  Emerson seconded the motion.  Motion passed 3-0.  The meeting adjourned at 7:48 PM.