Board of Selectmen Special Meeting
Tuesday, February 10, 2021
Present: Julia Pemberton, First Selectwoman; Peg O’Donnell, Selectwoman; Michael Thompson, Selectman.
Also present: Michele Grande, Town Clerk; members of town boards and commissions.
1. Call to order
The meeting was called to order at 10:02 a.m.
2. Discussion and possible action to set a date for a special town meeting to consider:
a. Method of Special Town Meeting (see Governor Lamont’s Executive Order Executive Order 9H)
First Selectwoman Pemberton stated that per Executive Order 9H, boards are authorized to hold virtual meetings and extends the authorization to Special Town Meetings and Town Meetings. Town Clerk Michele Grande noted that she has been researching how to conduct a public vote. She reported on the limited information she has received from other towns. The town of Greenwich utilized “district tabulators” along with text or emails to verify required information along with IT support. Mrs. Grande noted the need to check in registered voters. It was confirmed that votes cannot be made in advance. Judge Emerson will moderate the meeting. A test run of the check-in process will be conducted prior to the meeting.
Delineation of the process will be included in the meeting documentation. Tom Hennick will be consulted re: process for residents who do not have video capability. Mr. Thompson asked if there were privacy concerns with either voice or hand vote. Mrs. Pemberton stated that there is no expectation of privacy since votes at a Special Town Meeting are not anonymous. Mrs. Grande stated that paper votes are only done if a voice/hand vote is not decisive.
Mrs. O’Donnell asked if there is a budget for the meeting and suggested more people than less to assist. Mrs. Pemberton stated that current staff will be utilized.
b. Proposed ordinance to establish an Other Post Employee Benefits Trust (OPEB Trust)
First Selectwoman Pemberton reviewed the proposed OPEB Ordinance. The OPEB trust is a way to invest and manage funds for post-employee benefits that are not pension related as opposed to the current “pay as you go” method. The proposed ordinance will establish the trust and OPEB board which will be the Board of Finance. Administrative actions will be the role of the First Selectwoman along with the Treasurer and Finance Director.
c. To amend Redding’s Open Space ordinance to require dogs be leashed on town-owned open space unless otherwise posted
Mrs. Pemberton reviewed the proposed ordinance to make permanent the requirement for dogs to be leashed on town-owned open space unless otherwise posted that was made as a COVID-19 precaution. The Conservation Commission will decide any areas to be posted as exempt. The proposed ordinance gives authority to levy a fine.
Mr. Thompson motioned and Mrs. O’Donnell seconded the motion to hold a Special Town Meeting on February 18, 2021 at 6:30 p.m. to address proposed ordinances.
3. Public comment
4. Board member comment
Mrs. O’Donnell noted her appreciation for Judge Emerson.
5. Other business
Mrs. O’Donnell motioned and Mr. Thompson seconded the motion to adjourn the meeting at 10:23 a.m.
Kristi C. Reilly