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Bethlehem Board of Selectmen
Bethlehem Town Building Meeting Room
August 12, 2013
Present: Chairman Blanchard, Selectman Culver, Selectman Laleme, Selectman Fiorentino, Selectman Glavac.
At 6:35 Chairman Blanchard opened the meeting and announced that it is a work session.
Bethlehem Village District commissioners Dick Robie and Russell Mardin came before the Board to continue discussing the Water problems at Millers Run Road. Several homeowners were also present for the meeting including Mary Pat Simmons, Jan Kotok, Bill Dempsey, Mary Reidy, and David Pickman on behalf of Julia Brabec. Rick Skarinka, Chief Engineer of Drinking Water Bureau, was also in attendance. Rick said Dick called Ray Burton who called him and he has been involved with Bethlehem Village District for years. Rick said the Town should determine if the road is a private road or not and that he is not here to determine that. He said it needs to be determined if it is the homeowner’s problem or the Village districts and
then come up with a plan depending on who is responsible. He said it is not the Town’s problem. Rick asked the commissioners if the District got authority from the PUC (Public Utilities Commission) to serve people out of District. There was discussion about whether the road is private or a Town Road and was mentioned that the Town services the road. Rick said that doesn’t necessarily mean the Town officially adopted the road as a Town road. Rick explained that if it is determined that it is the homeowner’s responsibility the Town could possibly finance it for the homeowner’s and charge a betterment charge and that will go with the lot. He said the Village District doesn’t have the authority to collect if it is not paid because it is not in the district.
Dick Robie said there are similar problems in other parts of Town and believes there needs to be a policy in place going forward.
Bill Dempsey who lives at 95 Millers Run Road said at the Town’s 1969 annual town meeting the Town voted to accept the water line and appropriated $6,000.00 for maintenance. He also said in 1996 the homeowners were told that their water would be shut off and he said that was the 1st time he heard that it wasn’t town water. He said in 1996 the Board agreed to fix the leak and that the District has fixed every problem since and charged the Town. Dick Robie said in 1971 there was an agreement that was contingent on owner(s) putting in a 6 inch water line that had to be installed within a year of the agreement or the agreement would go away.
Bill Dempsey said he doesn’t know where the $6000.00 went.
Chairman Blanchard said the agreement became null and void because the line was not upgraded to a 6 inch water line. Currently it is a 1 inch line. Rick Skarinka said that a 1 inch line is unacceptable. He said the improvements have to be made.
David Pickman said he is here on behalf of Julia Brabec and said there are now some different homeowners and when they purchased their homes there wasn’t anything in deed or anything that said the water line is private. Mary Pat Simmons lives on Rocks Edge Road (since 1978) and thought it was town water. She said Rocks Edge Road is a private road. Don Lavoie said for 50 years the Town collected taxes as Village District and the Village District charged for water. Don suggested that the Town pay a 1/3, the Village District pay a 1/3 and the Homeowners pay a 1/3. Selectman Laleme read Warrant Article #25 from 1969.
Kathy Reidy who lives at 46 Millers Run Road said her water line was replaced and she had no idea when
she bought her house that is wasn’t town water. Dick Robie said the Village District has sent certified
letters to every realtor in the area to disclose that it is not town water lines. There was discussion about the homeowners forming an association.
Don Lavoie suggested taking money out of Capital Reserve funds for highway road repairs to fix the water lines. There was discussion about doing the work in the spring. Rick said the district should consider expanding the district to include Millers Run and also some other problem areas.
There was discussion about whether using Capital Reserve funds for this was ok or not. Selectman Laleme said research needs to be done. Don said fixing the water line is in everyone’s best interest. Dick said all Capital Reserves are specific and agrees with Sandy that more research needs to be done. Russ, Dick, and Rick all agreed that this was not an emergency.
Julian said when you purchase property you do a title search and some people have title insurance; he
suggested homeowners look into that.
Chairman Blanchard opened the sand bids. The 1st one was from Central Asphalt paving for $46,707.50 and the second one was from Blaktop for $47,804.00. Brett said he has done business with both companies and would recommend either one. Chairman Blanchard moved to accept the bid from Central Asphalt for $46,707.50. Selectman Laleme seconded. Carried 5-0.
Chairman Blanchard read a letter of resignation form Zoning Board member George Foss.
Chairman Blanchard reviewed a letter about a current use issue.
Chairman Blanchard referred to a letter that the snowmobiles no longer have permission to cross onto Swazey Lane. Selectman Laleme said it is the policy with the state to get the landowners written permission to cross land.
The Board reviewed the minutes from 08/05/13. Chairman Blanchard moved to approve the minutes as written. Selectman Laleme seconded. Carried 5-0.
Chairman Blanchard said the Board had toured the Colonial Theatre the week before and expressed how they are making great gains and commended them on a job well done.
Chairman Blanchard asked Selectman Laleme if she mentioned to Dave yet the idea of seasonal cart rental. Selectman Laleme said she did mention it to Dave and he is doing research.
Selectman Laleme brought up putting all of the Town’s fuel out to bid. She would like to include the
Heritage in that and have them reimburse the Town. Selectman Laleme moved to put all fuel (including
the Heritage) out to bid. Chairman Blanchard seconded. Carried 5-0.
The Board discussed the option of buying the storage container that we are currently renting. The cost to purchase is $2750.00 or $3250.00 is painted. We are paying 75.00 monthly to rent it.
The Board discussed the bear letter and determined they do still want it to go out.
At 8:28 Chairman Blanchard moved to go into non-public per 91a for reasons of reputation and personnel. Selectman Culver seconded. Chairman Blanchard did roll call with all members agreeing to go into non-public.
The Board discussed personnel. Selectman Laleme moved to give Nicole McGrath a .50 raise effective next pay check. Chairman Blanchard seconded. Carried 5-0.
At 8:55 Chairman Blanchard moved to come out of non-public session. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Carried 5-0.
At 8:55 Selectman Culver moved to adjourn. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Carried 5-0.