Board of Selectmen Special Meeting
Tuesday, July 19, 2021
Town Hall Hearing Room/ZOOM
Present: Julia Pemberton, First Selectwoman; Peg O’Donnell, Selectwoman; Michael Thompson, Selectman, seated at 7:22 p.m.; Finance Director Steve Gniadek via ZOOM; Assessor John Ford; Director of Park & Recreation Rob Blick; members of the public in person and via ZOOM.
1. Call to order
First Selectwoman Pemberton called the meeting to order at 7:01 p.m.
2. Approval of Minutes
Mrs. O’Donnell motioned and Mrs. Pemberton seconded the motion to approve the Minutes of 6/21/21. The motion passed unanimously.
3. Troop 15 Eagle Scout recognition
First Selectwoman Pemberton introduced Scoutmaster Scott Morris who summarized the challenges and successes of the Eagle Scout program during the last year. Selectmen proclamations were read for the Eagle Scouts in attendance: Cameron Hirsch, Karl Morris, Kyle Murray, and Stephen Zigmond and for those unable to attend: Christopher Shuford, Matthew Sun, Samuel Halpern, Henry Reinhart, Erik Areklett, and Thomas Mulcahy.
Mrs. O’Donnell thanked those in attendance and the families who supported the Eagle Scouts. Conservation Commission Chairman D. Pattee thanked the scouts who worked with the Conservation Commission on building/restoration projects.
Mr. Thompson noted his congratulations and noted that the number of those achieving Eagle Scout status is a credit to the community.
4. Girl Scout Silver Award recognition
Mrs. Pemberton congratulated and reported on the project that earned the Silver Award for two Girl Scouts.
5. Discussion and possible action on 2022 Revaluation: John Ford, Town Assessor.
John Ford was present. He reported on the option of utilizing continuing service agreements with Vision Government Services as an option to bidding out for an entirely new vendor for the upcoming 2022 revaluation. Additional costs exceeding $22,000 will be incurred if a new vendor is used.
Mr. Thompson asked Mr. Ford his opinion on the performance of Vision. Mr. Ford reported that he has been happy and not looking to make a change. Finance Director Steve Gniadek confirmed the funds that have been budgeted and stated that approval is needed from the Board of Finance.
6. Discussion and possible action: Community Center Pavilion, Rob Blick, Director of Park & Recreation.
Rob Blick was present. The adjusted quote for construction of the Community Center Pavilion is $9,113 higher than the original quote of $65,000 due primarily to market conditions. Mr. Blick reviewed the option of applying for LoCIP funds for the difference.
Mr. Thompson motioned and Mrs. O’Donnell seconded the motion to request LoCIP funding of $10,000 to complete the project as originally designed to account for higher costs, primarily lumber, since the project was spec’d out. The motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Blick stated that the quote is locked in until December, 2021. The project will take approximately 2-3 months.
7. Discussion: Year-end line-item transfers for fiscal year ending June 30, 2021.
First Selectwoman Pemberton and Mr. Gniadek reviewed the timing for setting a Special Town Meeting regarding line-item transfers. Mr. Gniadek suggested a date by the end of August. The Board of Finance will take action after which the Board of Selectmen will schedule the Special Town Meeting.
Mr. Gniadek reported that the audit will be likely November or ideally October.
Mrs. O’Donnell motioned and Mr. Thompson seconded the motion to add Public Comment as Agenda Item 10. The motion passed unanimously.
8. Discussion and possible action: Gilbert & Bennett Brownfield Environmental assessment grant contract and project procedures.
First Selectwoman Pemberton reported the project kick-off date as 6/26/2021. The contract from the Dept. of Economic Development is pending. The grant will pay for the Phase 1 assessment and the next use of the grant will be used for engaging a firm to lead public discussion about the future use of the property. Mr. Thompson asked about the scope and length of Phase 1. Mrs. Pemberton stated that it is limited to review of prior studies to obtain a baseline on what has been done to date.
Procedures were reviewed regarding acquisition of professional services including a selection committee to screen and evaluate RFP/RFQ responses. Mrs. Pemberton suggested that any residents with experience in land use, planning, legal, etc. contact her if they’d like to be involved in this process.
9. Other business
Mrs. O’Donnell reported on the positive progress of the telecommunications project. Increased press in The News-Times was noted and residents are encouraged to utilize the paper to keep up with town news.
10. Public Comment
Mr. Thompson motioned and Mrs. O’Donnell seconded the motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:01 p.m. The motion passed unanimously.
Kristi C. Reilly