Bethlehem Board of Selectmen
Bethlehem Selectmen Office
April 24, 2017
Present: Chairman Moritz, Selectman Moore, Selectman Ubaldo, Selectman Boisseau.
Chairman Moritz opened the meeting at 6:00 pm.
Chris McGrath said he was here 2 weeks ago and asked about the skate park and still doesn’t see any signs and said it is a safety hazard. Selectman Boisseau said he met with the Recreation Director about that and it is being addressed.
Julian Czarny said the links from the website that had the incorrect agendas have been removed. He asked who is responsible for the voting booths because Election Day is over and they are still up. He was told they would look into getting the highway department to take them down.
Catalina Celentano from Eversource came before the Board. She said she wanted to put a face to her name and introduce herself. She had some information about streetlights and the possibility of switching them over to LED. Ms. Celentano said we currently have 234 streetlights but we wouldn’t have to switch them all at the same time. She said the savings to switch is in the lower KWH and longer life of up to 20 years versus 12 to 15 years. The Board asked for the savings breakdown to switch to LED and was told the Town would hire a company directly to do it but could get us some more information. Dann suggestion contacting Littleton because they replaced city building lights and street lights so we could get some estimated saving numbers from them. There was discussion about doing a study during this process to see how many streetlights are necessary. Ms. Celentano explained we are on the efficiency outdoor light rate which is 40% less per month but we pay for total cost of repairs. It was noted we have not paid a repair bill for many years. Ms. Celentano also talked about a free seedlings program they are having at the library to celebrate Arbor Day.
Frank Claffey asked the Board to appoint Libby Staples as Deputy Treasurer. He said she would come on in the middle of May and would take on the job of Treasurer when he retires in the summer. Mr. Czarny asked if this is an interim position just for training or will we still have a deputy when Mr. Claffey retires. Mr. Claffey explained it is budgeted to have a deputy treasurer and someone needs to be available if the treasurer is not and said most towns have a deputy treasurer. Chairman Moritz moved to accept Mr. Claffey’s recommendation to appoint Libby Staples as Deputy Treasure. Selectman Moore seconded. Carried 3-0 (Selectman Ubaldo abstained.).
The Board reviewed and discussed equipment quotes for the country club for a mower. Chairman Moritz said the mower is critical for the greens and it is in the budget. Cheryl Jensen asked if there was a new manager. Chairman Moritz said Matt Courchaine is the new manager and the Board is very excited with Mr. Courchaine’s enthusiasm and experience. Selectman Boisseau said Mr. Courchaine is very familiar with the course and was the best candidate. There was discussion about the committee that was formed to look at alternatives for the country club and whether they looked at the option of leasing it. Chairman Moritz said the committee was to look at ideas to make it more profitable. Chris Jensen said they were supposed to explore all options but chose not to. Rita Farrell said Andy Smith did come and talk about the option of leasing/selling the country club. Selectman Moore moved to purchase the equipment that Mr. Courchaine is recommending for $7,000.00. Chairman Moritz seconded. Carried 4-0.
The Board discussed a request to refund a building permit application fee. It was explained that someone applied for a permit and then within a week had an extenuating health situation that would prevent them from doing the work. Dave Wiley (Building Inspector) was asked about it and he said he did not spend any time on the application so there is no cost involved to refund the fee. Chairman Moritz moved to refund the fee of $250.00 to the customer due to no cost to the town. Selectman Boisseau seconded. Carried 3-0 (Selectman Ubaldo abstained). Selectman Ubaldo said it is open ended and worried it would set a precedent for anyone to do it.
The Board discussed the Profile Regional Cable Consortium meeting on May 11th and said one more Selectman besides Selectman Glavac is needed to attend the meeting. Selectman Moore agreed to go to the meeting.
Selectman Moore said the exterior of the Visitor’s Center is very shabby with peeling paint. She said she spoke with Richard Leslie who will do a lead paint test and if there is lead paint he won’t “touch” it. She said he will have an estimate this week. She said there is $9500.00 in the GGB budget that could be used towards that.
Selectman Moore said she met with Ian Farley from Eversource about replacing the trees at the Gazebo and on Prospect Street and said there will be 4 flowering pears along Main Street and on the flat area where the picnic table is there will be a dogwood. She said the will start grinding the stumps this week. Carole Hammarberg asked about the replacement of the fence that is missing at the Visitor Center and Selectman Moore said she will work on getting the information about getting that replaced. Mrs. Farrell asked what the lifespan of flowering pears and dogwoods are and do they get infestations and diseases. Chris McGrath said he doesn’t want the trees to be put back in because it is easier for trucks to pull out of Prospect Street without the trees there. He asked who will care for the trees this summer. Selectman Moore said someone will need to water and care for the trees (8 trees) and will need to do this for 2 years to establish them. Selectman Ubaldo said they (Eversource) were doing this as a favor to us and they don’t usually do this so it is optional for them to take the trees. He said he plants trees all the time from an acorn. Selectman Moore said there will not be one going back on the corner of Prospect and Main so it will be easier pulling out of Prospect Street. The Board agreed to take the trees and do the best they can with caring for them.
The Board reviewed the minutes from 04/10/17 and 04/14/17. Chairman Moritz moved to approve the minutes from 04/10/17. Selectman Moore seconded. Carried 4-0.
Chairman Moritz moved to approve the minutes from 04/14/17. Selectman Boisseau seconded. Carried 3-0 (Selectman Ubaldo abstained).
Cheryl Jensen asked about the Business Retention and Expansion (BR&E) Committee and why it was not meeting. She asked how much was paid for this and said if people had a conflict they should be removed from the committee. Selectmen Moore said Selectman Glavac agrees and wants to get it going as well. She was told they were already paid $2,500.00 for their services. Selectman Ubaldo said this committee is important especially because the landfill committee was tabled. There was discussion about emails between committee members going back and forth with strong feelings about the landfill and Kevin Roy is what caused the committee to be put on hold by Geoff Sewake of UNH (facilitator of the committee). The Board asked April to reach out to Geoff about setting up a meeting to get the meetings going again.
Selectman Ubaldo expressed concern about not being notified about the 04/14/17 meeting because he didn’t receive the email through his selectman email.
At 7:21 Chairman Moritz moved to go into non-public session per RSA 91 A:3 II for matters of personnel. Selectman Moore seconded. Chairman Moritz did roll call with all members agreeing to go into non-public session.
The Board discussed new hires for the country club.
Chairman Moritz moved to approve all new hires submitted by Matt Courchaine (Gary Robinson $10.00, Jillyan Newell $9.50, Bernard Hartshorn $9.50, James Seppala $9.50, Cameron Bosse $9.50, Barbara Klingler $10.00). Selectman Moore seconded. Carried 4-0.
At 9:20 Chairman Moritz moved to come out of non-public session. Selectman Ubaldo seconded. Chairman Moritz did roll call with all members agreeing to come out of non-public session.
At 9:20 Chairman Moritz moved to adjourn. Selectman Boisseau seconded. Carried 4-0.