Present: Pemberton, Karvelis, Thompson
Also present: 22 members of the public, Director of Finance Gniadek, a representative of the Redding Pilot and videographers.
First Selectman Pemberton called the July 21, 2014 meeting to order at 7:32 pm.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Motion: move to approve the minutes of the June 16, 2014 meeting as submitted. Karvelis, Thompson. Approved. Unanimous.
Motion: move to approve the minutes of the June 26, 2014 meeting as submitted. Thompson, Karvelis Approved. Unanimous.
Motion: move to approve the minutes of the July 2, 2014 meeting as submitted. Karvelis, Thompson. Approved. Unanimous.
DISCUSSION AND ACTION ON REDDING COMMUNITY CENTER ENERGY EFFICIENCY EVALUATION AND RECOMMENDATION
Director of Finance Gniadek reported that an energy audit was done recently on the Community Center by PT Energy and New England Energy Controls. Their report and recommendations were presented for consideration, along with a proposal that included CL&P rebate and incentive opportunities.
The recommendation for lighting included changing out the lighting fixtures in the parking lot to LED bulbs (50 bulbs). The new lighting would match the new lighting in the Redding Elementary School Parking lot. Additional savings could be achieved by programming some of the parking lot lights to turn off when the area is not in use.
They recommended a energy management system be installed to electronically manage the heating and cooling of the building. The system would allow for automatic adjustment to heating and cooling depending on usage and could be managed on site and off site. These recommendations create energy savings of about $13,000 annually.
The cost for the changes is $91,000, with a CL&P rebate of 18%, bringing the cost to $75,000. CL&P has a 4-year financing program that would cost the Town about $5,700/year. Based on last year’s energy costs, Mr. Gniadek believes there is sufficient funding in the current budget to cover that cost.
Based on the recommendation, the long term energy savings and the available funds in the current budget, the consensus of the Board of Selectmen was to proceed with implementation of the recommendations.
DISCUSSION AND ACTION ON NUTMEG NETWORK GRANT AND RESOLUTION
Discussion of the fiber optic cable network Grant was discussed. The Town would access the network via the Police Safety Data Network. The cost is $20,000 with a State Grant of $19,000. The proposal was reviewed by the Town’s data and phone consultants and the recommendation was to proceed.
Motion: move that the Board of Selectmen approve the RESOLUTION authorizing the First Selectmen to enter into the agreement for the Town of Redding. Karvelis, Thompson. Approved. Unanimous.
DISCUSSION AND ACTION ON ESTABLISHMENT OF A MENTAL HEALTH TASK FORCE
League of Women Voters (LWV) representative Margaret Brown recapped the recommendation presented at the last meeting for the creation of a Task Force to address mental health concerns and resources in Redding. A draft charge and potential membership for the Task Force was discussed. There was agreement that the Task Force should report back to the Board of Selectmen with recommendations within nine (9) months. Membership would include Police Chief Fuchs, Human Services Director Schiron, a representative of the Board of Selectmen, Commission on Aging Chair Rosalind Kopfstein, and LWV representative Mary Dale Lancaster. The group would consult with and request input from the school and faith communities as needed.
Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen establish a Mental Health Task Force to explore and make recommendations to the Board of Selectmen for implementation of an efficient and effective plan for providing improved mental health resources to the community of Redding and report back to the Board of Selectmen within nine months. Karvelis, Thompson. Approved. Unanimous.
DISCUSSION AND ACTION ON HVCEO/SWRPA MERGER PROCESS & WCCOG ORDINANCE
Jonathan Chew, Executive Director of the Housatonic Valley Council of Elected Officials (HVCEO), was present to discuss the merger of HVCEO with the South Western Regional Planning Agency (SWRPA) into the Western Connecticut Council of Governments (WCCOG). The ordinance on this issue needs to be presented and approved at a Town Meeting. At the August meeting of the Board of Selectmen, they will set a date for a Town Meeting.
DISCUSSION AND ACTION ON DOT MASTER MUNICIPAL AGREEMENT FOR ACQUISITION OF RIGHTS OF WAY
CT DOT has requested a Master Municipal Agreement for the purpose of streamline the process of moving forward on rights of way projects.
Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen approve the following Resolution: Resolved, that Julia Pemberton, as First Selectmen of Redding, Connecticut, is hereby authorized and directed to enter and to sign the Agreement entitled, “Master Municipal Agreement for Rights of Way Projects” with the State of Connecticut Department of Transportation. Karvelis, Thompson. Approved. Unanimous.
James Miller, Middlebrook Pond Road: Mr. Miller suggested that further exploration of the Community Center heating and air condition systems be done. He suggested that more efficient equipment may be available.
Sherry Karraker, Poverty Hollow Road: Mrs. Karraker addressed the changing in fee structure for the Senior Center classes and programs. She noted that only the Town of Ridgefield has a “pay in advance” system as opposed to the open fee structure.
Myrna Robinson, Peaceable Road: Mrs. Robinson questioned why the fee structure for the senior center programs was being changed. She added that many programs are ongoing, allowing for seniors to attend when they are available.
Bill Walsh, Ledgewood Road: Mr. Walsh commented that more fees would be collected with the flexible fee program than with the new fee structure He believe the change will result in fewer participants and fewer programming for seniors.
Peter Bonfanti, Umpawaug Road: Mr. Bonfanti commented that it is unsustainable to run programs without effective planning, commitment and advance payment/registration. Programs & classes should be paid for in advance and this will allow the staff to plan additional programs/classes to serve those who already participate and those who are not currently being served. He added that the Commission on Aging discussed a change in the fee structure a year ago, but the change was not implemented.
Jean Schroeder, Lonetown Road: Mrs. Schroeder commented that other towns, with the exception of Ridgefield, offer classes/programs on a flexible basis.
Virginia Cohen, Stepney Road: Mrs. Cohen commented on the importance of flexibility for seniors. She suggested implementation of an annual fee for senior center membership, especially for those who use the center for free programs/classes.
First Selectmen Pemberton responded to the comments that the current fee structure is not conducive for the staff for planning programs and classes effectively. The staff is working/training on a computer program for registration. Marketing initiatives have been implemented, including program information in the Park & Recreation Brochure, email communication with class participants, and weekly emails regarding programs. The overall intent is to bring in more people and provide more programs for seniors. The fee structure will be discussed and re-evaluated at the September meeting of the Board of Selectmen. It is important to allocate resources where needed, to develop more programs and bring in more people.
Motion: move that the Redding Board of Selectmen re-appoint John Board, Jan Dorenbosch and Scott Palmer to the Park & Recreation Commission for three year terms beginning July 1, 2014. Thompson, Karvelis. Approved. Unanimous.
Motion: move to adjourn the meeting. Karvelis, Thompson. Approved. Unanimous.
The meeting adjourned at 8:45 pm.
Mary Maday, Recording Secretary