TOWN OF WILLIAMSTOWN
MEMBERS: Larry Hebert – Chair, Bill Ashe – Vice Chair (absent), Rodney Graham, Francis Covey, Scott Vaillancourt
MANAGER – Jacqueline Higgins
WATER & SEWER MEETING
CALL TO ORDER: The meeting was called to order at 7pm by L. Hebert. R. Graham made
the motion to enter into the Board of Water & Sewer commissioners, seconded by F. Covey and
#1 –Water & Sewer Connection - M. Keahy & J. & K. Roya – The
Keahey’s & Roya’s came to the Board requesting to make a new connection to the Town’s
water & waste water system. The Roya’s are planning to build a yurt across from 271 Seaver
Road, on property owned by the Keahey’s. J. Higgins explained where the hook-up would be.
R. Graham made the motion to approve the application of M. Keahy & J. & K. Roya for a new
connection to the Town’s water and waste water system.
F. Covey made the motion to exit Water & Sewer Commissioners and enter Selectboard meeting
at 7:03 p.m., seconded by R. Graham, and so voted.
SET THE AGENDA: R. Graham made the motion to approve the agenda with the addition of
executive session, seconded by S. Vaillancourt, and so voted.
REVIEW OF OPEN PUBLIC COMMENT: available for viewing at all meetings.
OPEN PUBLIC COMMENT AND ANNOUNCEMENTS:
#1 – W. Roberts – W. Roberts & J. Higgins met with Tom Gardner who is installing the solar
farm and he is interested in working with W. Roberts with the solar project for the town. W.
Roberts will be getting more information pulled together. They feel the perfect spot would be by
the water storage tank on Rood Pond Road. The agreement would have T. Gardner building the
Town the solar farm for free, and in return he would get a tax break for the amount it would cost
to build it, and once that amount is reached he would go back to paying taxes. The Town would
get credit for the electricity the put into the power grid and that amount should offset the Town’s
#2 – M. Sprano – Is the time clock working yet? J. Higgins that yes it is and has been being
#3 – M. Sprano – He went to the last Treasurers Committee meeting and was told by the Town
Clerk that he could be there but that he could not speak. He has done some research and feels
that he should have been able to speak. The Board stated that it is in fact a public meeting and
he could speak, but interviews would be held in executive session and he would not be able to be
there for that.
#4 – B. Watson – She announced that the Northeast Fiddlers would be at the Historical Society
on October 9, 2012 at 7:30. They would be having a potluck at 5:30 followed by their annual
meeting at 6:30, and then the fiddlers. The building is handicap accessible.
#5 – B. Watson – B. Watson wondered what responsibility the town has when an injury and/or
emergency occurs on a Class IV road and it is difficult for emergency personnel to arrive. R.
Graham stated that the VT statutes lay out what responsibility the town has. The town has no
liability for these situations. While Williamstown does not have the specialized equipment in
their ambulance and fire departments area departments do, so there are ways to get to remote
#6 – C. Peloquin – Questioned why M. Sprano was not allowed to speak at the Treasurer
Committee meeting. It was reiterated again that it was an error and that they should and will be
following open public meeting laws.
#7 – C. Peloquin – Wanted to know if it was the Boards intent to have the Town Manager speak
about the proposed Road Plan 2013. L. Hebert board chair said that yes the manager would be
speaking about it.
SELECTBOARD ANNOUNCEMENTS: None.
REVIEW & APPROVAL MINUTES: R. Graham made the motion to accept the minutes of
the September 17, 2012 meeting, with corrections, seconded by F. Covey, and so voted.
REVIEW & APPROVAL WARRANTS: R. Graham made the motion to accept the payroll
warrant 9/9/12 – 9/22-12, SB153 and SB153, seconded by S. Vaillancourt, and so voted.
TOWN MANAGER REPORT: Delinquencies update as of 10/2/12 – taxes $98,952.05 (down
$12,98721 since the last meeting and the first time since 2005 it has been under 6 figures!), water
$30,477.65 (down $1,059.85 since the last meeting), sewer $28,462.44 (down $422.06 since last
meeting). 14 properties had been sent to the tax sale attorney, currently 6 are still not paid, or
adequate arrangements made. Tax sale date is October 16, 2012 at the Town Hall.
R. Graham made the motion to approve $1,000 of Class IV funds be spent on Cedar
Swamp, seconded by S. Vaillancourt.
J. Higgins reported the highway work completed in the last 2 weeks and what work is to
be done in the next 2 weeks.
On October 11, 2012 Hartigan will be coming to do the pump out, and will camera the
swag in the line on Depot Street.
C. Peloquin wanted to know if the mud spot at the Rood Pond & Weir Road intersection
will be fixed while the excavator is so close. E. Farnham said that it needs more than just
drainage, that it would need a dig out and matting, and they don’t have the equipment for much
longer, and not much more time before snow flies. There is enough money in the budget for just
one more week of excavator rental for the fiscal year.
C. Peloquin wanted to know if the Weir Road issues would be taken care of. E. Farnham
spoke with the owners and that ditching, culvert and seeding work will be done.
#1 – HEALTH OFFICER REPORT – A. Kramer recently attended training and did a
presentation of some common problems. Free furniture beside the road (could have bed bugs,
pet dander, smoke, etc.), plumbing issues, and paint disposal. He stated that there is a difference
on how things are handled when it is an owner occupied dwelling vs. a rental property. L.
Hebert asked for an update on the Hebert Road property, and A. Kramer will contact the state
and have an update at the next meeting.
#2 – TREASURER COMMITTEE – F. covey gave an update on the committee. He also
presented the Board with a salary recommendation of a salary of $460 per week (yearly $23,920)
for 20-22 hours per week. C. Peloquin asked if it was within the budget and it is. M. Sprano
wanted to know if the Selectboard had received notification of the salary recommendation via
email before the meeting, and they replied that they had not, that they are hearing it for the first
time now. M. Sprano wanted to know what “hidden costs” would be over and able the salary,
such as unemployment, workers compensation, bond, etc. He was told that it would be treated
like every other position, and that those costs are considered in separate line items. B. Watson
asked if the new Treasurer would receive a vacation, and vacation pay. The committee had not
discussed vacations yet. M. Sprano wanted to know if they salary was accurate for a town our
size, and L. Hebert replied that it is. This person would be a regular hired employee. R. Graham
made the motion to set the salary for the new appointed treasurer’s position at $460 per week for
20-22 hours per week, seconded by S. Vaillancourt, and so voted.
#3 ROAD PLAN 2013 –
A - J. Higgins presented the board with a preliminary plan. Heavily traveled Class III roads lose
1 inch of surface per year, and we need to plan accordingly to keep our roads in good condition.
Everything in the preliminary plan falls within the budget we currently have except for road
surfacing gravel. We would need to increase the budget by $40,000 to resurface 6 miles of
road per year. E. Farnham said that it would be better to raise gravel by $87,500, but the Town
Manager disagrees. We just need to plan the work accordingly and raise it $40,000.
B – C. Peloquin asked about the roadside mowing and brush cutting. The preliminary plan
calls for renting the equipment and hiring a part time person to run the equipment. He wanted
to know if that is the less cost effective. It makes more sense to hire someone part-time than to
pay our highest paid workers to run it when they could be busy on other projects that need to be
C – R. Graham stated that we need to put money into the roads to save them before we get into
more trouble with the roads. We have level funded the budget for the last 5 years.
D – M. Sprano wanted to know if you could go a year without doing the mowing. F. Covey
stated that wasn’t a good idea because brush grows too quickly. R. Graham said that maybe
since they did a double pass this year they could get away with doing a single pass next year.
#1 – PUBLIC SAFETY BUILDING - R. Graham gave an update. The only change that has
been made is that they added a second garage door on the back for the ambulance. It is estimated
to cost $3.1 - $3.2 million. The committee would like to get it added to the Town Meeting
warning. They are searching for grants. It was noted that if you apply for a USDA loan you can
apply grants to that, but if you get a bond you cannot apply grants to that after the fact. They
would like to get bids before town meeting so that they have solid figures to vote on. Bids would
be contingent on the towns vote. M. Sprano wanted to know where the plans can be viewed, and
they are at the town hall. M. Sprano wanted to know what the tax increase would be, and there is
no way of knowing that yet. L. Hebert noted that we would have 2 public hearings before town
meeting and would have the information then. E. Everheart stated that right now we meet all
federal parameters for grants.
#2 – CULVERT CENSUS – Our currently policy is within FEMA criteria. Culverts going
across driveways but are not in the town right of way are not the town’s responsibility. C.
Peloquin asked if all culverts had been reviewed, and J. Higgins reported that all culverts have
been installed since she has been here have been reviewed. C. Peloquin said whatever the Board
decides is fine just wants everyone treated fairly. E. Farnham said that he feels that he has been
installing culverts correctly and doesn’t know of anyone in town that has been treated unfairly.
R. Graham noted that some culverts were not installed with his idea of a head wall, and he also
wanted it noted that when you make a policy, or amend a policy things need to be like that from
that point forward, it is not retroactive.
#3 – OLD TOWN WATER TANK – The .90 acre parcel at the bottom is tabled until more
research can be down. There was discussion about presenting the upper parcel to adjoining
landowners with the town keeping a deeded right of way and deeded easement for the waterline.
It was then questioned if a subdivision permit was needed, so it was tabled until more research
could be done. M. Sprano asked who maintains the road now. E. Storrs maintains it now, it is
not a town road. R. Graham noted that the town had installed a gate at one point but had to take
it down because they do not own the road.
AROUND THE TABLE:
R. GRAHAM – None
B. ASHE – Absent
F. COVEY – None
S. VAILLANCOURT - None
L. HEBERT - None
EXECUTIVE SESSION – F. Covey made made the motion at 8:44pm to have a brief recess
and then to enter into executive session in accordance with 1 VSA § 313, seconded by R.
Graham, and so voted.
Motion was made my S. Vaillancourt and seconded by F. Covey to exit executive session
at 9:00 p.m. No action taken.
ADJOURN - S. Vaillancourt made motion to adjourn at 9:00 p.m., seconded by F. Covey and