01/25/2021 SB Minutes
TOWN OF BETHLEHEM
2155 Main Street
Bethlehem, NH 03574
Bethlehem Board of Selectmen
January 25, 2021
Via Zoom – Chairman Boisseau, Selectman Moore, Selectman Moritz, Selectman Caplain, Selectman Jensen.
Chairman Boisseau opened the meeting at 6:00pm and reminded people to leave their microphones on mute.
Positive of the week: Selectman Moritz would like to recognize Stephen Dignazio for his contributions to Bethlehem. He was the founding director of the Colonial Theater and restored the Colonial in 2001. 15,000 people come into Bethlehem each season to visit the Colonial. Main street would not be where it is today without Stephen and the Colonial.
Chris McGrath – How many tickets have been given since littering ordinance has passed? Noise ordinance public hearings not posted correctly – Confusion on posted date. Chairman Boisseau – public hearing not continued from first meeting. Feb 1st is new date for second hearing with adequate notice.
Veronica Morris – asked if text of noise ordinance has changed and noted last week’s agenda was posted by mistake on website.
Chairman Boisseau presented all capital warrant articles. Selectman Caplain made a motion to have select board approve warrant articles as presented by chairman – Selectman Moritz seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
Chairman Boisseau presented all petitioned warrant articles. The board put articles forward to save non-profits from getting signatures that were on ballot last year. Selectman Moritz – point of clarification that articles are coming from board and typically board doesn’t recommend petition articles that affect budget and do recommend board articles – Either recommend all or none. Suggests recommending all articles, petition and non-petition.
Veronica Morris – including one warrant that town didn’t approve last year. Selectman Moritz – has been approved in past so felt appropriate to add them.
Frank Claffey – each warrant must be voted individually as they are individual warrants. Chairman Boisseau clarified that warrants were voted on as a group to approve or not by the board. They will be presented individually on the warrant for residents to vote on each individually.
Chairman Boisseau made a motion to recommend each warrant individually for non-profit organizations in light of COVID issues. (Amended to include that board did this for COVID issues). – Selectman Moritz seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
Solar project warrant article Selectman Caplain explained the project and amount and the reasoning behind warrant.
Frank Claffey – need to add who is authorized to spend funds at deliberative.
Selectman Caplain made a motion to approve the solar panel array warrant as presented – Selectman Moritz seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
Marketing Budget Update
Chairman Boisseau – left out line in budget last week for marketing plan expense. $15,000 funding into marketing plan was left out of budget and it was added in last week. Selectman Caplain circulated a Sullivan Creative ad in the NH Camping Guide, 15,000 issues distributed – free ad.
Selectman Moore made motion to add in $15,000 into visitor center budget to bring it to $26,127. – Selectman Jensen seconded – questions? (see below)– roll call – all – motion passed.
Chris McGrath – used state funding last year to pay for marketing, same this year? – Selectman Moritz explained last year it was unanticipated funds returned by state, this year it was added to budget. Mr. McGrath is worried that we are only marketing select businesses. Selectman Caplain explained that every business is welcomed to participate, no exclusion to any businesses. Selectman Moritz explained that all businesses that have come forward have not been denied. Chairman Boisseau – back to motion.
Selectman Boisseau made a motion to close budget hearing – Selectman Caplain seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
Chairman Boisseau – add streetlight at 900 Main St. to add visibility.
David Wright stated there are no lights between Presby Fuel and Brook road and would like to add one to increase visibility.
Chairman Boisseau stated it is a state road, but the town pays for lights. Selectman Moritz explained that the next step will be to estimate the expense of installinga light and the board will get back to Mr. Wright.
Veronica Morris asked if the issue was lack of lighting or speeding in the area. – Chairman Boisseau explained that accidents are both speed related and related to lack of visibility. The board will get estimate and pass along information and the board will make decision.
Veronica Morris – people walking in dark clothing on country roads at night in summer. Anything else can be done to warn people?
Chairman Boisseau – pedestrian signs must be approved by DOT and the state as it is state road. Selectman Caplain confirmed and stated that it can be a factored area in on Complete Streets. Chairman Boisseau stated the town looked into adding a crosswalk and signage in that area. It would need to be town funded and state installed. At the time it was $100k plus to install. The signage has to come through DOT and lights are paid for by town.
Chairman Boisseau – Map and Lot 205-095 – $1,146.38 taxes paid twice, tax service and owner paid.
Selectman Moritz made motion to abate map and lot 205-095 for reasons of double payment. Selectman Jensen seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
Follow Up – none
Chairman Boisseau – KRT appraisals – can’t get inside building for inspections due to COVID and they have until 2023 to finish, some assessments will be delayed.
Increased cases of COVID – Anything the board can think of that we should be doing that we aren’t doing? Board has been proactive and wants to continue to be proactive – Chairman Boisseau wants the board to reassess and see if there is anything else the board can be doing to remain proactive.
Minutes (1/11/21 and 1/18/21) Selectman Moore motion to accept minutes from 1/11/21 and 1/18/21– Selectman Jensen seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
At 7:07pm Chairman Boisseau moved to go into non-public session per RSA 91A:3 II for matters of reputation. Selectman Moritz seconded – roll call – all – motioned carried.
Board discussed letter sent to board regarding interest charged on late tax payment.
At 7:24 Selectman Caplain made a motion to adjourn. Chairman Moritz seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.