11/23/2015 – Minutes
Bethlehem Board of Selectmen
Bethlehem Selectmen Office
November 23, 2015
Present: Acting Chairman Glavac, Selectman Staples, Selectman Laleme, Selectman Blanchard.
Acting Chairman Glavac opened the meeting at 6:03pm.
Dan Crosby came before the Board to talk about Solarize Ammonoosuc. He said it is about making solar more affordable and they are concentrating on Bethlehem, Franconia, Sugar Hill, and Easton. He said they have an installer who is willing to give a tiered system and explained the price comes down with more people doing it. Mr. Crosby said the installations would be happening next year and he is here to spread the word. He said there would be different events happening in each town to get the word out. Mr. Crosby said the price ranges but on a 5 KWH house with roof mounted panels the cost would be approx. $18,000 but after deducting
the Federal and State incentives it would be $11,000.00. He said a 5 KWH house equates to approximately $80 to $90 electric bill. The link and information will be put on the Town’s website.
Chief Ho-Sing-Loy came before the Board to ask for the Board’s permission to apply for a DWI grant. He explained they get this grant every year and budget for it and get reimbursed later. Selectman Blanchard moved to approve the DWI grant for $4,650.00. Selectman Laleme seconded. Carried 4-0.
PLANNING/ZONING: Mike Bruno came before the Board to go over the proposed Planning/Zoning budget. He explained the salary line increase for the clerk is due to the additional 5 hours that was previously allocated to building dept. He explained the clerk is spending a lot of hours working on the Master Plan. Selectman Glavac asked what would happen when the Master Plan is complete and was told the Select Board would have to determine that because the clerk is a Town employee. There was discussion on encumbering
the remaining Master Plan cost of $3,300.00. Selectman Laleme moved to encumber $3,300.00 for the Master Plan for 2016 with contract signed with June Garneau. Selectman Staples seconded. Carried 4-0. Acting Chairman Glavac moved to move $100.41 from 01-4191-10-390 to the Master Plan line to make up the difference. Selectman Staples seconded. Carried 4-0.
WELFARE: Dawn Ferringo came before the Board to discuss the welfare budget. She asked permission to add a new question to the welfare application to ask if the client or their family have served in the military. She explained this would allow them to be referred for services. Selectman Blanchard moved to add the question. Acting Chairman Glavac seconded. Carried 4-0. Mrs. Ferringo explained she has been a little more busy in welfare so would like to allocate her hours to 12 hours for welfare (up from 10) and 23 hours for Planning /Zoning (down from 25).
DISPATCH: It was suggested the dispatch budget be $95,000.00 due to the increase in calls. There was discussion about dispatch and how it used to be done in house. There was discussion about inviting the county commissioners to discuss the dispatch costs.
BUILDING INSPECTION: The salary line for the building inspector was increased slightly but was done by taking the average monthly cost and dividing by 12.
COUNTRY CLUB: Darren Perkins came before the Board to discuss the Country Club budget. He handed out a paper that told of the “happenings” at the country club for this past year. He said he based his revenues off of this year’s actual revenue. Selectman Staples asked why there is a reduction in projected revenue from this year’s actual and was told the restaurant will be offering less expensive meals so could affect the revenues. Acting Chairman Glavac said his revenues for this year are $28,000.00 short then what was projected. Mr. Perkins said he will be focusing more on advertising to draw in more business. Mr. Perkins said he will be continuing the electrical work that needs to be done and said there isn’t anything major that needs to be done for the restaurant. He said the supplies line is decreased because of
simplifying the menu. Selectman Staples asked about advertising because only $5700.00 was spent this year and she asked where the results would come from spending more. Mr. Perkins said he would be doing more print and newspaper ads and possibly some radio advertising. Acting Chairman Glavac said he would like to see growth and improvement to the facilities. He said he doesn’t see growth and that the projected revenues are not increased from current year actual revenues. There was discussion about membership and Mr. Perkins said there are lower numbers for membership. Selectman Blanchard asked about the innkeepers and asked if Mr. Perkins talks to them. Mr. Perkins said he had someone doing that last year but not this year. Acting Chairman Glavac told Mr. Perkins that this wasn’t the first time they have talked about revenue. Selectman Laleme said he was worried about over expending the budget so he didn’t fully expend what he had to promote it. Mr. Robie said you never knew when the restaurant was going to be open and sometimes it was help yourself service. Mr. Robie also asked how Maplewood could be busy all the time and not us. Frank Claffey asked Mr. Perkins if he included the lease payment in the budget. Mr. Perkins said he thought it was paid off and Mr. Claffey said he thinks it has at least one more year. There was discussion about how a special revenue fund works and how all profits/losses stay within the country club special revenue fund unless it were sold or closed then the loss would be paid by the Town.
LEGAL: The Board discussed the legal budget and determined to put $35,000.00 in the proposed budget.
The Board discussed the website and it was determined the quote from Larcom Studios is still valid. The Board discussed that they cannot do the website until after the vote in March.
The Board reviewed an abatement. Acting Chairman Glavac moved to approve abatement for Map/lots; 201/31, 203/002, 414/014, 415/019, 415/057, 415/148, 418/006, and 202/037 because they are town owned property. Selectman Laleme seconded. Carried 4-0.
The Board discussed a request to have the tax commitment record (300+ pages) be emailed and whether or not to charge a fee. The Board discussed what the current policy is (.20 page if printed and emailed no charge). The Board said to follow current policy.
The Board reviewed the minutes from 11/16/15. Selectman Blanchard moved to approve the minutes as written. Selectman Staples seconded. Carried 4-0.
The Board discussed the Northern Pass and there was a request to put it on the agenda every week to update and share info on a weekly basis. Selectman Laleme said she talked with Pat Kellogg and said Margo Conners could help with intervener letter. Mrs. Jensen said she sent a copy of the letter from Concord and is waiting until they issue an order on December 18th before asking for intervener status. Mrs. Jensen also said she told Pam Monroe that the Bethlehem Board of Selectmen may want to hold a meeting in Bethlehem.
There was discussion about the tax rate and using $350,000 from unassigned fund balance to lower the tax rate. Acting Chairman Glavac said we have retained 6.49% in our unassigned fund balance so it allowed them to use some to lower the tax rate and said Bethlehem’s municipal rate is comparable to other towns.
Julian Czarny asked if the ice rink will be filled and said there are leaves in it that he is willing to take out if it is not a massive amount.
At 8:09 Acting Chairman Glavac moved to go into non-public session per RSA 91 A for matters of reputation and personnel. Selectman Blanchard seconded. Acting Chairman Glavac did roll call with all members agreeing to go into non-public session.
The Board discussed personnel.
The Board discussed deeded property and confirmed to continue with quiet title petition.
At 9:20 Selectman Laleme moved to come out of non-public session. Selectman Staples seconded. Acting Chairman Glavac did roll call with all members agreeing to come out of nonpublic session.
At 9:20 Selectman Laleme moved to adjourn. Selectman Blanchard seconded. Carried 4-0.