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11/11/2013 – Minutes

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Bethlehem Board of Selectmen
Meeting Minutes
Bethlehem Town Building Meeting Room
November 11, 2013

Present: Chairman Blanchard, Selectman Fiorentino, Selectman Culver, Selectman Laleme, Selectman Glavac.

At 6:00 Chairman Blanchard opened the meeting and announced that it is a work session. He also said the Board appreciates those who are and have served our country.

Jack came before the Board to update them on the Fire Truck he will be purchasing. He told the Board that he went down to look at it and said it is in very good condition. He said there will be some things that need to be upgraded and will require a little extra money but he said he will make a list of those items and will get it to the Board. Jack said he will fly down a couple of firefighters to drive the truck up. Jack also said he would like to sell the 2 vehicles that this truck will be replacing. Chairman Blanchard moved to allow Jack to advertise the 2 vehicles. Selectman Culver seconded. Carried 5-0.

The Board discussed the Health Insurance quote from Interlocal Trust. Selectman Laleme moved to go with Interlocal Trust plan with no deductible for 2014. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Selectman Glavac said he thinks the employee portion should be increased to reduce even more the Town portion. Selectman Laleme said she would like the percentages to stay the same for this year. Carried 5-0.

Selectman Laleme referred to the legal advice about the water issue on Millers Run Road and asked if it was a done deal. Selectman Culver moved to notify the homeowners and the commissioners that the Town cannot expend money for water repairs per legal advice. Selectman Laleme seconded. Carried 5-0.

The Board discussed the properties to be sold on Feb 24, 2014. The Board discussed selling all that they can and how it is better to sell them ASAP. Selectman Culver moved to sell the latest deeded properties at 20% of assessed value and drop the former properties from the last sale that didn’t sell to 5% of assessed value. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Selectman Glavac said he is concerned that Cedarcroft will not sell for 20% of assessed value. Chairman Blanchard said the Board needs to be consistent. Jack recommended that the Board use some money from the warrant article for distressed buildings to test for asbestos because he thinks it may make a difference on the bidding if people had that answer. Jack will get cost for that. Carried 5-0.

The Board discussed the Oxbow Drive property. Chairman Blanchard said the Board cannot do something that would singularly benefit a private person. Selectman Culver said the Board is not authorized to give away Town property. The Board discussed how the property is gated and shouldn’t be. Selectman Culver moved to write the owner of the property a letter saying the Board is not authorized to give Town property away and to order her to remove the sign and the gate if the gate is hers. Chairman Blanchard seconded. Carried 5-0.

The Board reviewed the Omni Privacy agreement and tabled it until next week.

The Board reviewed the quote on switching the Town’s phone service from Fairpoint to Time Warner. Selectman Culver said we need to check to see if it can be converted from analog and what that cost would
be and to also see if we would be able to keep our same phone numbers.

The Board reviewed a quote for Microsoft Office software for the assessing computer. It was determined the Board did not need to vote on this.

The Board discussed the lot line adjustment request from Latson O’Neal. It was said the Board could not give land away. Chairman Blanchard said based on legal counsel the Town cannot enter into this agreement with Mr. O’neal because the Town cannot give property away per warrant article. Selectman Culver seconded. Julian asked if the lot would become a nonconforming lot and also said Mr. O’Neal could bid 20% of assessed value on the lot in the upcoming sale on 02/24/14. Carried 5-0.

The Board discussed the Building Inspector and Health Officer positions. It was discussed how the position formerly paid $20.00 and hour as an independent contractor. It was suggested to leave it the same in the budget until someone is hired.

The Board reviewed a request from Victor Hoffman of the Wayside Inn about an overpayment to the Country Club. Selectman Laleme moved to issue $60.00 check out of the Country Club budget. Chairman Blanchard seconded. Carried 5-0. A copy will be given to David.

The Board discussed the Country Club General Manager interviews and Martin said he would like to see the Country Club go back to having the GM managing the restaurant and the Club. Selectman Laleme said she
thought it worked well this year.

Selectman Laleme said she read the minutes from 11/04/11 and has some comments based on those. She said the police salary line increased because of calls but she questions the increase of calls. She also said when the deployed officer returns the officer that is filling in for him leaves. Selectman Culver told Selectman Laleme that she should go talk with Chief Ho-Sing-Loy about his budget and why he has the increases. Selectman Laleme said a ½ million dollars for police budget is too much for Bethlehem. Selectman Culver said they are being proactive instead of reactive. Selectman Laleme also said it is a Town of 2400 and said she doesn’t think we need 3 taser’s. She was questioning the expense of that. Sandy also commented on the increase in the Deputy Tax Collector/Deputy Town Clerk’s hours and pay. Selectman Fiorentino said the budgets were just presented to the Board but there was not a vote. He said the Board only voted on the taser’s and he said that was a safety issue because an officer was injured
because he didn’t have a taser. Selectman Culver said all the officers need their own equipment.

Selectman Glavac suggested the employee’s pay an additional 1% for their health insurance for each category (single, 2 person, family). After further discussion he said single plans should increase 2% for employee share and 1% for 2 person but no increase for family plan. Martin moved to increase employee % by 2% for single plan and 1% for 2 person. Selectman Laleme seconded. Motion failed 1-4.

At 7:46 Chairman Blanchard moved to go into non-public session per 91a for matters of personnel and reputation. Selectman Culver seconded. Chairman Blanchard did roll call with all members agreeing to go into non-public session.

The Board discussed personnel.

At 8:43 Chairman Blanchard moved to come out of non-public session. Selectman Laleme seconded. Carried 5-0.

Selectman Culver moved to contact Aries engineering to do the post closure report on the old town dump
(Prospect Street). Chairman Blanchard seconded. Carried 5-0.

The Board reviewed the minutes from 10/28/13. Selectman Glavac moved to approve the minutes as written. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Carried 3-0 (Chairman Blanchard and Selectman Laleme abstained).

The Board reviewed the minutes from 11/04/13. Chairman Blanchard moved to approve the minutes as written. Selectman Fiorentino seconded. Carried 3-0. (Selectmen Glavac and Laleme abstained).

At 8:47 Chairman Blanchard moved to adjourn. Selectman Culver seconded. Carried 5-0.

Respectfully submitted,

April Hibberd

Administrative Assistant