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Minutes of Board of Selectmen, 11/18/2013

AGENDA: Board of Selectmen

RECEIVED 11/20/2013 9:14am
Michele R. Grande – Redding Town Clerk


Present: Ketcham, Pemberton, Takacs

Also present:  nine members of the public, Highway Superintendent Hanson, Police Chief Fuchs and a representative of the Redding Pilot.

First Selectman Ketcham called the November 18, 2013 meeting to order at 7:34 pm.


Motion: move to approve the minutes of the October 21, 2013 meeting as submitted. Takacs, Pemberton. Approved. Unanimous.


Highway Superintendent Jeff Hanson reported a rating system was developed for each road in Redding.  Each road was evaluated on the condition, and rated using a system from 1 to 10, with 10 being a road in good condition.  Mr. Hanson reported that 51 roads (20.75 miles) were given a rating of 4 or below, roads that are in need of immediate attention.  Some roads have surfaces that need to be completely reclaimed; others are areas that are in need of major repair. Using a budget estimating program, Mr. Hanson estimates the cost to do the needed work on the 20.75 miles would be almost $7 million.

He noted that since the spring of 2012, 12.91 miles of roadway has been reclaimed or received overlay. Two roads, Poverty Hollow and a part of Cross Highway, will be worked on as  the final portion of the current Highway Road bond package.


Georgina Scholl and Ann Raymond presented the Parade Path Committee’s request for a sign to be hung on the Town Green to identify the Parade Path. Mrs. Scholl presented a sample of what the sign would look like.  The sign will conform to the Redding Zoning regulations, will be hung from a wooden post, will be similar to the sign at Highstead Arboretum, will be set back 10 ½ ‘ from the road under a tree.  Mrs. Scholl stated the sign was designed to fit in with the surrounding landscape.  Letters stating there was no objection to the proposal were received from the Redding Preservation Society, Redding Historical Society and Town Historian Kathleen von Jena.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen approve the designated spot for the Parade Path sign consistent with zoning regulations.  Pemberton, Takacs.  Approved. Unanimous.


Toby Welles of the Planning Commission, along with Jo-An Brooks of the Redding Land Use office and Town Planner John Hayes were present to discuss the Incentive Housing Zone Plan and Resolution.  The Plan was developed by the Planning Commission to meet requirements of the State for affordable housing.  Two areas have been designated as potential sites for development with affordable housing; a site on Old Mill Road in the Georgetown area and a site on Route 7 adjacent to Old Redding Road.  The Planning Commission has asked the Board of Selectmen and the Zoning Commissions to approve the Plan for submission to the State for approval.

Discussion of the plan followed.  The Old Mill Road site is property that is privately owned.  That area is adjacent to public transportation, water and sewer.  The Route 7 site is owned by the State of Connecticut as part of the now cancelled Super 7 project.  The area has been studied and is suitable for water and septic use.  This could be a public/private project.

James Miller, a member of the Water Pollution Control Commission, suggested the available capacity in the Georgetown water treatment facility be revisited.  The numbers presented for capacity were a number of years old.  Mr. Welles indicated that the Old Mill site’s development as housing units would require much less capacity than commercial development.

Mr. Welles commented that it is unfortunate that existing accessory apartments do not qualify as affordable housing, but this is an issue for the State’s legislature. Current regulations prohibit these units from qualifying.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen approve the following Resolution:

The Redding Board of Selectmen met on November 18, 2013 and unanimously adopted a resolution which 1) Authorizes submission of the zone adoption application under the Housing for Economic Grown program referenced in Section 8-13 (m-x) of CGS; and 2) Identifies Natalie Ketcham as an individual authorized to sign the zone adoption application and administer the project.  Such application is attached to and made a part of this record.

Motion by Takacs, seconded by Pemberton. Approved. Unanimous.


Jo-An Brooks explained that Wolfe Road is an unused road that was originally a part of the Wolfe property that was sold to the Town for the John Read Middle School.  The road was for the use of the school and to provide access to the remainder of the Wolf parcel of land.  Since that time, the remaining Wolf parcel has been sold and some land was given to the Land Trust and some land was developed.  The road bisects the Land Trust property. The roadway is not maintained or usable, but remains on some maps.  A quit claim deed has been prepared by the Town Attorney that deeds the roadway to the Redding Land Trust.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen approve the proposal as presented for the transfer of Wolfe Road by Quit Claim Deed to the Redding Land Trust. Takacs, Pemberton. Approved. Unanimous.


Police Chief Fuchs provided an update on the Department’s work toward receiving State Accreditation.  The accreditation process includes a review of the department’s policies and procedures, and assurances that these meet current operation standards. The review process by the State has been completed and Chief Fuchs anticipates the Department will received Accreditation status in February..


Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen add to the agenda a discussion and action on directional signs for the West Redding Business District.  Pemberton, Takacs.  Approved. Unanimous.


During the rebuilding of the Simpaug Bridge, directional signs for the West Redding Business District were erected for directional/informational purposes.  When the bridge work was completed, those signs were removed. The West Redding Business District has requested the signs be put back up to inform and encourage traffic and business to the area.  The signs qualify as municipal directional signs.  Five of the signs are available for use.  Chief Fuchs identified five locations for the signs.  Mr. Takacs voices his opposition to signs in general, stating his opinion that there are too many signs in Redding.  He suggested that an overall review of signs in town be done and that unnecessary signs be eliminated.

Motion:  move that the Redding Board of Selectmen ask the Highway Department to erect the five existing directional signs for the West Redding Business District as soon as possible.  Pemberton, Ketcham.  Approved. 2-1. Mr. Takacs voted against the motion.


Mrs. Ketcham reported that a bequest in a resident’s will provided funds for a new mini-bus/van for Heritage Center use.  The van is used to provide transportation for seniors and others to medical appointments, shopping, etc.  The new mini-bus/van has been ordered and is expected to be received in February.  The current van has a trade-in value of $3,750.  Mrs. Ketcham noted that the Bridgeport Rescue Mission is in need of good used vans, and suggested that a donation of the van be considered as an alternative to the trade-in of the van.  Commission on Aging Chairman, Rosalind Kopfstein, submitted a letter on behalf of the Commission, indicating their preference for making the donation of the van to a worthy non-profit organization.

Motion:  move that the Redding Board of Selectmen approve the donation of the current Heritage Center van to the Bridgeport Rescue Mission when the new mini-van/bus is received.  Takacs, Pemberton.  Approved. Unanimous.


The list of meeting dates for 2014 was reviewed. The meetings follow the pattern of scheduling meeting on the third Monday of each month.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen approve the 2014 Meeting Date Schedule as submitted. Pemberton, Takacs.  Approved. Unanimous.


Motion:  move that the Redding Board of Selectmen appoint Anda Cumings as Planning Commission Alternate, replacing Donald Stroetzel.  Takacs, Ketcham.  Approved. Unanimous.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen appoint John Board to the Park and Recreation Commission to replace Allyson Florkowski.  Takacs, Ketcham. Approved. Unanimous.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen appoint Bruce Given as Full Member of the Zoning Board of Assessment replacing Michael Thompson.  Takacs, Pemberton.  Approved. Unanimous.

Motion:  move that the Redding Board of Selectmen appoint Hank Bielawa as Full Member of the Board of Ethics replacing Walter King.  Takacs, Pemberton.  Approved. Unanimous.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen reappoint James Miller, as the First Selectman’s designee, to the Water Pollution Control Commission.  Pemberton, Takacs.  Approved. Unanimous.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen reappoint Liz Furrer to the Board of Assessment Appeals.  Takacs, Pemberton.  Approved. Unanimous.


Mrs. Ketcham reported the 1714-2014 Committee has arranged for a display of artifacts at the Mark Twain Library in January/February.  The group is continuing work on other events to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the purchase of land by John Read.


Mrs. Ketcham reported that HRRA (Housatonic Resources Recovery Authority) has recommended a new firm for the electronic recycling program at the Transfer Station. Some of the  firms doing this type of work have closed and the HRRA has recommended that the contract be assigned to the new firm.

Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen approve the E Waste and Recycling contract assignment as recommended by HRRA.  Takacs, Pemberton.  Approved. Unanimous.


Mrs. Ketcham provided a copy of a letter to the Connecticut Bond Commission regarding support for the bonding of the GLDC project for Intersection #3 work and work on the river wall.  The Bond Commission is scheduled to meet in December to consider the matter.


Jeanne Wendschuh, Deer Spring Road: Mrs. Wendschuh thanked Mrs. Ketcham and Mr. Takacs for their service to the residents of Redding. She also asked about the status of the Town Hall sprinkler system project.  Mrs. Ketcham responded that the bids for the sprinkler system were all over the approved funding limit.  The Fire Marshalls are in the process of reviewing the plans for potential changes that would bring the project cost down to the approved dollar amount.  She reported the Fire Marshalls were uncertain as to when they would complete their review.

Leon Karvelis, Umpawaug Road:  Mr. Karvelis thanked Mrs. Ketcham and Mr. Takacs for their years of service.  He asked Chief Fuchs if the accreditation process found any policies or procedures that required changes and if the process has a fiscal impact. Chief Fuchs responded that no deficiencies were found, but some policies/procedures were tweaked.  There was no fiscal impact of the process.

Mrs. Ketcham presented Mrs. Pemberton and Mr. Takacs with gifts in appreciation of their work.  Mr. Takacs was given a plaque recognizing his 10 years of service on the Board of Selectmen and Mrs. Pemberton was given a paperweight with the Redding seal for her desk. She also presented the gavel to Mrs. Pemberton.


Motion: move that the Board of Selectmen recess to executive session for a discussion of Police Union Contract negotiations.  Takacs, Pemberton. Approved. Unanimous.

The meeting recessed at 9:15 pm


The Chair reconvened the meeting in public session at 9:35 pm

No further action was taken.


Motion: move to adjourn the meeting. Takacs, Pemberton. Approved. Unanimous.

The meeting adjourned at 9:35pm

Respectfully submitted,

Mary Maday, Recording Secretary