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Home » 11/14/2016 – SB Minutes

11/14/2016 – SB Minutes

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Bethlehem Board of Selectmen
Meeting Minutes
Bethlehem Selectmen Office
November 14, 2016

Selectman Blanchard, Selectman Laleme, Selectman Ubaldo.

Selectman Blanchard opened the meeting at 6:04pm.


Doug Harman, Len Grubbs, and Laura Clerkin came before the Board to discuss their proposed budget. Mr. Harman said they level funded their budget. Mr. Grubbs explained that they were able to enter into a 3 year agreement for lawn and snow care and that dropped their costs. The budget allows for a slight increase in salary and it was said that they did a comparison of similar population towns as Bethlehem and Ms. Clerkin is the lowest paid librarian by a considerable amount. Selectman Laleme said all town employees are at low salaries and that it is a town wide problem. Selectman Laleme asked about the revenues they receive and said that used to be included on their budget. Mr. Grubbs said it is non lapsing revenue so they took it out of the budget. He said they receive revenue from book sales and nonresident fees and said it is approximately $2000.00 a year. He gave Selectman Laleme a copy of the balance sheet. Mr. Harman said there is a warrant article on the books with $3.74 left in it and suggested writing a warrant to get it off the books and transfer the balance to the general fund.

Mike Bruno and Chris McGrath came before the Board to discuss the planning/zoning budget and said the proposed budget is down 31%. There was discussion about the $3,300.00 that was encumbered for the Master Plan and how the Master Plan is still not complete. Mr. Bruno said he is comfortable with paying the balance due for the Master Plan because the last meeting will be in December. There was discussion about the postage and advertising lines going over the budgeted amount this year by a considerable amount. There was also discussion about how the expenses for the advertising and postage do not get offset by the revenue because the revenue goes into the general fund so enough has to be budgeted to prevent the budget from
being over expended. Mr. Bruno increased the postage and advertising lines.

Police Chief, Mike Ho-Sing-Loy came before the Board to discuss his budget. He explained the majority of the increases are for benefits including, Health insurance, retirement, and dental. He said he factored in a 3% increase for salaries. Chief Ho-Sing-Loy also said he did not budget for overtime patrols because they haven’t been doing them due to lack of manpower but he hopes to start doing them again in 2018. He explained the payment of $1800.00 for the tasers will be coming from the services/supplies line. Selectman Blanchard asked about the status of the parked cruiser and was told there is a problem with the electrical system and he is looking to replace that cruiser this year. He said the two newest officers will be starting the police academy January 2nd and will finish in April. The Chief was asked what he would be
requesting for Capital Reserve’s and said he will be asking for $23,000.00 for the cruiser and $3,000.00 for
specialized equipment.

Country Club:
Larry Fellows came before the Board to discuss the Country Club budget. He explained that he increased the membership price by $25.00 per person, increased green fee by $2.00 and increased the golf carts by $2.00. The Board had questions about the revenue because they were not broken out in all the different account numbers. Mr. Fellows will separate out the numbers in more detail and come back on 11/28/16. There was discussion about the expenditures and how a big amount wasn’t expended. Selectman Laleme asked Mr. Fellows to get estimates for a POS (point of sale) system.

Mary Jackson came before the Board to discuss the tax budget. She said she budgeted for a deputy treasurer in case it is needed but will incorporate the $1000.00 budgeted for it to the Treasurer if it isn’t needed. Selectman Laleme said to keep the treasurer’s salary at $8,000.00 and add the $1,000.00 to deputy treasurer.

Town Clerk:
Mary Jackson discussed the town clerk budget with the Board. She explained the 3% salary increase. Mrs. Jackson said the moderator wants an assistant at the elections so there is money in the budget for the moderator to get $200.00 per election and the assistant to get $100.00 per election. She said her services/supplies line is increasing due to changing over to Heartland for the Credit Card payments and due to purchasing a chip scanner. Mrs. Jackson said her mileage line has an increase because of people going to trainings and said there will be new supervisors of the checklist so they will be going to trainings. Frank Claffey told the Board that the new ambulance will be delivered tomorrow and said $70,000 will be taken from the Capital Reserve and will borrow $78233.00 from Passumpsic at 1.9% for 5 years. He explained Jack Anderson obtained a grant for approximately $30,000.00 but that can’t be used this year because we will need to doa warrant article to use the $30,000.00 to go towards the principal balance. He also said we will budget for the 1st year’s debt service in the budget. Selectman Laleme moved to go with Passumpsic Bank at 1.9% for 5 years. Selectman Blanchard seconded. Carried 3-0.

The Board discussed a request from the Conservation Commission to appoint Chris Jensen to a 3 year term as an alternate. Selectman Blanchard moved to approve the appointment of Chris Jensen to a 3 year term as an alternate. Selectman Laleme seconded. Carried 3-0.

The Board discussed the copier end of lease buyout. The Board asked that we get a quote from WB Mason for a new copier and to get a quote for black/white and color.

The Board reviewed the tax collectors warrant. Selectman Blanchard moved to sign the tax warrant 2nd issue. Selectman Laleme seconded. Carried 3-0.

The Board discussed the option of purchasing new rugs instead of using the rug service. Selectman Laleme moved to purchase the rugs out of the maintenance budget and purchase the cheaper ones for low traffic areas and the more expensive ones for the high traffic areas. Selectman Blanchard seconded. Carried 3-0.

The Board reviewed the minutes from 11/03/16. Selectman Ubaldo moved to approve the minutes. Selectman Blanchard seconded. Carried 3-0.

Selectman Blanchard read correspondence from the supervisors of the checklist letting the Board know they appointed Betsy Phillips to replace Ellen Roy. Selectman Ubaldo said he would like to look at Cola in egards to raises.

Selectman Laleme told the Board about an email that Cliff Crosby received that said it was from her but said it wasn’t from her and is concerned about how that would happen. At 8:20 Selectman Blanchard moved to go into non-public session per RSA 91A:3 for matters of personnel and review of legal advice. Selectman Laleme seconded. Selectman Blanchard did roll call with all members agreeing to go into non-public session.

The Board discussed personnel.

The Board discussed legal advice and Selectman Blanchard moved to authorize attorney working with Rochester and Bethlehem. Selectman Ubaldo seconded. Carried 3-0.

At 8:43 Selectman Blanchard moved to come out of non-public session. Selectman Laleme seconded. Selectman
Blanchard did roll call with all members agreeing to come out of non-public session.

At 8:43 Selectman Blanchard moved to adjourn. Selectman Laleme seconded. Carried 3-0.

Respectfully submitted,
April Hibberd


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