Board of Selectmen Meeting Minutes & Agendas

Sep 28, 2015

Approved Minutes Sep 28, 2015

Present: Town Manager Andrew Dorsett, Chairman Marghie Seymour, V. Chairman Milton T. Bratz, Selectman Schuyler Sweet, Executive Secretary Ceil Stubbings

Others Present: Chief Joe Mercieri (Littleton FD), Captain Jeff Whitcomb (Littleton FD), Firefighter Todd McKee (Littleton FD) new call firefighters, Rachael Dorisky (Channel 2), Robert Blechl (White Mountain Record), Darin Wipperman (The Courier), Dann, Rudy Gelsi, Donna Devlin, Katherine Dorisky, John Hennessey, Eddy Moore by telephone, Dave Ernsberger, Dorothy McPhaul

Seymour called the meeting to order at 5:00 PM

Pledge of Allegiance 5:00p.m.

Chief Joe Mercieri – Littleton Fire Department
Recognition Ceremony: Captain Jeff Whitcomb and Firefighter Todd McKee
Chief Joe Mercieri presented plaques to Jeff Whitcomb and Todd McKee for their many years of service and dedication to the Town of Littleton and the Littleton Fire Department.

Introduction and Inauguration of Three New Call Firefighters
Chief Mercieri introduced three new call company members to be sworn in by Chairman Marghie Seymour.
The three new members were sworn in separately by Seymour. The new members consisted of Jennifer Lang, Kevin Lowe and Andrew Buckley. Chief Mercieri presented all three with their badges after being sworn in.

Public Comment:
Dorothy McPhaul wanted to speak regarding the Site Evaluation Committee in Concord. This committee grants the certificates to all large energy projects. For a year and a half they have been going through rules and revision process. She has been on one of the committees and in two work groups within the committees. She is not pleased on how things are going for the public. One of the worst things is they have taken the power to override local planning and zoning board decisions. McPhaul said they are not just talking about the Northern Pass. The Northern Pass is nothing when compared to the damage that can be done by this being allowed to happen. Their last draft rules revision will be ready tomorrow and will then go to the joint legislative committee. She has written to other Town’s and is asking the Town of Littleton to write a letter regarding their power to preempt the Town’s Zoning laws and Master Plans is not acceptable. If it is for an energy project and it is to keep the lights on that is acceptable. But if it is merely to line the pockets of an energy company that is unacceptable. As of tomorrow their last draft of the rules will then go to the house. She has written to the Towns to write a letter is their plan to rule zoning and planning it is unacceptable. Her goal is to stop them from getting that kind of power. If that does not work then she proposed a bill before the legislature to take that power away. She has a representative and a senator who are willing to do that. It will be tried to take the power away. She has a sponsor she has a representative and a senator willing to do it. This needs support from the Town one person is not going to change this. Seymour thanked her for the information. Seymour asked for the opinion of the other two selectmen. She gets nervous when a government agency says they can override our local regulations. Bratz said this is consistent with our decision on the Northern Pass. Sweet said he agreed but that the Town Manager should look into it with due diligence.

Seymour then introduced Carol Fonetu.
Carol thanked the Littleton Police Department for it making safer on Union Street for our children. Her concerns are for the elderly and disabled. On Cottage Street at the crosswalk to the Lane House she suggests lowering the flashing light and maybe it is time for a new one. People don’t always stop when there is a person in the crosswalk. She also suggests two new miles per hour be installed. Also there is a need for a crosswalk at the Co-op where it goes to the street. Fonetu also listed her concerns on some of the sidewalks. In the winter they can be very icy. She feels we need to honor our seniors and the disabled. Fonetu made a diagram and provided the boards with an article she found. Seymour thanked her for her input.

Seymour then introduced Dann and advised that he had his name down three times. Seymour advised him that he would have two minutes. Dann said that most Town’s allow three minutes. Dann said there was no notification of a highway committee meeting that had taken place. There are five cracks in the garage floor. Most grants require the Town to put in 20% as a match. The larger the grant the more the Town has to pay. He has also been talking about purchasing the most expensive steel bridge. Dann said we were being greedy by taking the highest of the three steel bridges. Seymour asked when the highway meeting was and asked Stubbings if the meeting was noticed. Stubbings said the meeting was noticed on the webpage, the Town Office, Library and the Water & Light Department. Seymour said they would look into the cracks in the highway garage floor and get back to him. . Seymour said that every grant is different. It is not always true that the bigger the grant the more money the Town has to come up with. Some grants have small match amounts and some have none. In general we always have a meeting on grants and we talk about what the Town’s match is. That is not something that we hide from anybody. Dann said this had to do with the three bridges and that the Town picked the most expensive one. Seymour said she feels he is beating a dead horse over this issue. It seems unnecessary for him to keep going over this.

Seymour then introduced Rudy Gelsi
Gelsi said this is in regards to the Water & Light Department. As long as he has been involved in the Town he has never heard of the Water & Light Department giving the Town some of their over budgeted money. He would like to be enlightened on this subject. If water and light has remaining money instead of putting in their own budget it could go to the Town of Littleton. Seymour said this issue came up before but there are reasons why this is not being done. Seymour said they would get back to him at a later date

Town Manager’s Report:
Dorsett said an extension request has been submitted for the multi-model bridge. One easement remains. Expectation of completion of project early next year. Seymour asked if the extension was granted. Dorsett said they are expecting it will be. Dorsett said there was a Highway Garage Building and one of the things discussed was how to fund the LED lighting. There are going to be able to do it by using some of the Energy Committee and other funds from within the budget. There are some hairline cracks in the concrete slab. They are not structural they are more aesthetic. Dorsett said they are still working on some of the pilots for the tax season.

Dorsett said they received notification about a grant they did not get. John Hennessey said they had three grants outstanding. This is one that we applied for one point three million. This was an Economic Development Grant. It was to repair Saranac and Mill Streets along with the sewer infrastructure. They listed two reasons as to why we did not get the grant. The Town vote for a bond to put up local matching funds was not successful this year, and secondarily that we could not demonstrate sufficient jobs specifically in the commercial/industrial sector (as opposed to retail/housing/tourism) would be created as a result. Although this is unfortunate news, we have other grant applications pending, and we continue to move the project forward. We will potentially look at reapplying for the EDA grant and others as the next round comes up in 2016. Seymour said that this is one of those situations that if we had to pay for it by ourselves we probably could not afford it.

Dorsett said the other thing that came up is the tree harp location. While it is not as visible as in front of the senior center Kate Vaughn was satisfied with the location. Seymour said she went to look at the location and thought it was a very nice location between the Riverwalk. Bratz made the motion to approve the tree harp location. Sweet seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0. Sweet second passed 3-0.

Seymour announced the dates set for the Budget Hearing and the Deliberative Session as follows:
Finalized Town Meeting Dates: Bond/Budget Hearing – Monday, January 18, 2016-Martin Luther King Day. Tuesday, January 19, 2016 will be the snow day if needed. Deliberative Session – Wednesday, February 3, 2016. Thursday, February 4, 2016 will be the snow day if needed.

The school will hold their Budget Hearing on Monday, January 11, 2016 with Tuesday, January 12, 2016 the snow day if needed. The School Deliberative Session is scheduled for Monday, February 1, 2016. Tuesday, February 2, 2016 will be the snow day.

Old Business:
Golden Eagle Railway – Rails to Trails/Restoration of the Railway
Dorsett advised that he had not heard anything from Golden Eagle regarding the train rails. Seymour said she has talked with several people in the community that a lot of action and money spent to move forward with the trail. Her feeling is the board should do nothing at this time and continue with the plan they approved before this issue came up. Sweet asked about the naming of the rest area for Ray Burton. The board has not heard anything negative. The board agreed by consensus they would support it.

New Business:

Other Business:
Approve the minutes of August 10, 2015 and September 14, 2015
Bratz made the motion to approve the August 10th minutes. Sweet seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0. The board will approve the September 14th and September 28th minutes at their October 13th meeting. Sweet made the motion to adjourn. Bratz seconded the motion. The motion passed 3-0. The meeting adjourned at 6:11 PM.