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Bethlehem Board of Selectmen
Bethlehem Selectmen Office
September 29, 2014
Present: Chairperson Laleme, Selectman Blanchard, Selectman Fiorentino, Selectman Culver.
At 6:30 pm Chairperson Laleme opened the meeting.
Chad Stearns, Branch Manager for Connecticut River Bank, NA, came before the Board with a proposal for the Town to do business with Connecticut River Bank. Mr. Stearns said Connecticut River Bank will be merging with Mascoma Savings Bank soon. Chairperson Laleme said Frank Claffey will be doing a comparative analysis for the Board of all the banks.
Donna Devlin-Young came before the Board and said she is running for House Representative for our district. She said she wants to make life better for people and thinks she could be similar to Ray Burton. She will set up times to have one on one appointment’s with Selectman Blanchard and Selectman Fiorentino.
Chairperson Laleme said the Board did some research and got legal advice on the 1994 Warrant Article about noise. Chairperson Laleme said there is no enforcement portion in the Warrant Article and said there is no way to enforce this. Chairperson Laleme also said this would be for all of District II and that no one is grandfathered. Selectmen Culver, Blanchard, and Fiorentino all agree that there is no way to enforce it. Ms. Farrell said there must have been a reason why it was passed and said it would be disorderly conduct if the police respond to a complaint. Ms. Farrell suggested that it is not a matter of policing but have the officer explain the ordinance. Chairperson Laleme said there is a state law about noise and they can call the police if they have an issue but cautioned the police will need to prioritize so may not be able to immediately respond. Andrea Bryant asked the Board to waive attorney client privilege. Chairperson Laleme said they are not going to waive the privilege and said the attorney advised us to never waive advice unless absolutely necessary. Jeanne Robillard asked if that was from the Town’s attorney and Chairperson Laleme said it was. Mrs. Menard asked if the noise ordinance could be put in the newspaper. Selectman Culver said this ordinance doesn’t do anymore than the state law. Chairperson Laleme said it could be put on the website. Chairperson Laleme said she will research what is in District’s II and V.
Jeanne Robillard told the Board that they choose not to “see” things so they choose not to do anything about it and asked them why they were in those seats.
Chairperson Laleme told the Board about some new zoning laws that she read in the Town & City publication.
Chairperson Laleme said they encumbered funds for the skate park but the plans have changed so they need to “unencumber” those funds and look for it in the budget for next year. Chairperson Laleme moved to not do the skate rink work and return the $6,678.00 that was encumbered to the taxpayers. Selectman Blanchard seconded. Selectman Fiorentino said they should use part of it. Chairperson Laleme said they only way it can be used is if they remove the asphalt. Jeanne Robillard said last week there was discussion about the $18,000 for paving on Trudeau Road and that could have paved the skate rink.
The Board reviewed abatements. Chairperson Laleme moved to abate $469.41 to Pacific Union Financial due to overpayment. Selectman Blanchard seconded. Carried 4-0.
Chairperson Laleme moved to abate $346.18 to Chase due to overpayment. Selectman Culver seconded. Carried 4-0.
Chairperson Laleme moved to abate $195.31 to US Bancorp Service due to overpayment. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Carried 4-0.
Chairperson Laleme moved to abate $2,171.74 to Woodsville Guaranty due to overpayment. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Carried 4-0.
Chairperson Laleme moved to abate $657.63 to Woodsville Guaranty due to overpayment. Selectman Blanchard seconded. Carried 4-0.
Chairperson Laleme said they received an email from Bruce Johnson asking the Town to do a school funding formula Warrant Article. The Board tabled this until budget time.
The Board reviewed a letter from North Country Scenic Byways asking for the Town’s representation. Selectman Blanchard said he would do it.
The Board reviewed the budget review schedule.
The Board reviewed the minutes from 09/22/14. Selectman Blanchard moved to approve the minutes as written. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Carried 3-0 (Selectman Culver abstained).
The Board discussed the North Country Council regional plan draft.
The Board discussed the fence at the Visitor Center; the Board will talk to Brett to see if Kevin can repair it.
Frank Claffey asked the Board to allow the expense to fix his computer. Chairperson Laleme moved to pay for Mr. Claffey’s computer repair and put it under executive. Selectman Culver seconded. Carried 4-0.
Julian Czarny asked the Board if any money was put aside to do the skate rink this winter. Chairperson Laleme told him the Village District supplied the water and Derek Brown volunteered his time and also said there is a little money in the budget if we need to hire someone to shovel it.
At 7:20 Chairperson Laleme moved to go into non-public session per 91A for matters of personnel and reputation. Selectman Culver seconded. Chairperson Laleme did roll call with all members agreeing to go into non-public session.
The Board discussed personnel.
The Board discussed a recreation issue.
At 7:45 Chairperson Laleme moved to come out of non-public session. Selectman Blanchard seconded. Carried 4-0.
Selectman Fiorentino said just because people have different opinions from the Board does not mean the Board does not do due diligence. He said people have right to voice their opinion but it is just that; their opinion.
Selectman Blanchard said he thinks the budget for 2015 should be flatlined.
At 7:50 Chairperson Laleme moved to adjourn. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Carried 4-0.