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06/13/2022 SB Minutes

2155 Main Street
Bethlehem, NH 03574

Bethlehem Board of Selectmen

Meeting Minutes

June 13, 2022


In person – Chairman Caplain, Selectman Jensen, Selectman Morris, Selectman Hibberd, and Selectman Queiroga

Chairman Caplain opened the meeting at 6:00pm and reminded zoom participants to keep their microphones on mute and in-person public members to use podium to speak.


Public Input –

Chris McGrath – came year ago to ask town to look for senior town dog rate – puppy rate currently – 11 years or older – Chairman Caplain – will investigate it and look at current costs.

Bruce Caplain – as public member – Tri Town Bike initiative – grant to place posters from the Tillotson grant – will be adding them in the tri town area – Philip Renton from Reklis designed them


HEB Engineering – Benefit analysis of culvert/road work covered by mitigation funds

Selectman Jensen – Chris Fournier from HEB Engineers– lot more money available for hazard mitigation than in years past – Federal funds – HEB submitted letters of interest on town’s behalf – July 15th deadline – River Road culvert over Black Brook and South Road culvert over Baker Brook –application for $5500 each – HEB cost analysis and grant writing – Chris Fournier – 90% reimbursement with $11million dollars available – Chairman Caplain – how many projects are being funded and areas of interest? 1000’s of submissions? – Chris Fournier – lots of submission with 90% reimbursement – 70 letters of intent total, 4 from Bethlehem – experience 20-30 submit actual application – Selectman Queiroga – timeline for funds being spent? – Fed declared disaster fund for COVID – statewide – obligation is expected this fall and 3 years to spend money – Chairman Caplain – town puts money up first and then gets reimbursed? – Chris Fournier – yes, reimbursed and can be monthly reimbursement, not total – Selectman Queiroga – $900,000 rough guess, two projects mentioned? – Chris Fournier – River Road – $900,000, South Road – $500,000 – Chairman Caplain – when were the estimates done? Chris Fournier – couple weeks ago – Chairman Caplain – get Brett Jackson’s input – Brett Jackson – Black Brook floods every spring and a couple times a year – South Road – undermining, box culvert – damage from last major FEMA incident – items are on the book from hazard mitigation plan – Chairman Caplain – urgent? needed? – Brett Jackson – needed – Black Brook will be a bridge after – Selectman Queiroga – if had to do one over other? – Brett Jackson – Black Brook – South Road can be fixed easier – Chairman Caplain – if apply for grant and awarded, are we obligated? $90,000 plus HEB amount – Selectman Morris – not obligated to take money – Selectman Hibberd – estimating double Highway Block Grant coming this year – Brett Jackson – block grant usually around $100,000 – Selectman Queiroga – key that we don’t have to accept money – can we apply for $900,000 but if we only spend half? Only reimburse what is spent – Chairman Caplain – odds of awarded grant? – Chris Fournier – first phase is benefit cost analysis – if pass test, odds are high awarded grant – cost analysis is $3000, if it doesn’t work out, grant writing phase is not needed – Chairman Caplain – enough time between now and July 15th to do cost analysis and grant writing? – Chris Fournier – yes – town hired HEB to do hydraulic analysis on sites after last major FEMA event – Selectman Morris – lots of information with recent storm event and documentation – helps to speak to need of Bethlehem projects – Chairman Caplain – if move forward where would the funds come from? – $5500 – Brett Jackson – block grant – Selectman Queiroga would cost analysis be done by original date of June 30th? – Chris Fournier – originally planned by June 22nd –  will use a few more days to deliver by end of June – Bridge funding available as well with highway block grant info – $36m dollars – ½ distributed based on population and ½ share of bridge depth area – can get amount – Selectman Morris – if not elect to go forward with both applications, have meeting on 6/27 – if we move forward with just cost analysis will it give HEB time to go forward with grants? Chairman Caplain – we can decide to move forward, contingent CBA being over 1.0 – Chris McGrath – River Rd bridge – Fish habitat programs can add funding – Black Brook – wild brook trout habitat – can assist in funding for project – Wild Trout Initiative – trout assessments in state – current bridge isn’t good for wild brook trout – Selectman Queiroga – still need to look at funding – Frank Claffey – roughly $100,000 in block grant – truck and lease payments come out – Selectman Hibberd – can wait to take out of block grant until end of year.

Selectman Morris – motion to sign 2 agreements for CBA coved by hazard mitigation funds and grant applications if CBA meets HEB threshold – Selectman Hibberd second – roll call – all – motion passed


Board Follow Up items

Chairman Caplain – list to keep track of items – see attached follow up list at end of minutes.

Zoning – Selectman Hibberd – housing part of hazard mitigation bill – zoning ordinance in part of funding – Chairman Caplain – haven’t come out with info yet – Selectman Morris – already moving forward with new information out there – Chris McGrath – change zoning and give members info to bring more affordable housing – Selectman Morris – update codes to add items that don’t exist anymore

Selectman Jensen – planning board would like confirmation that receiving $10,000

STR – ordinance – Selectman Queiroga drafting an ordinance or looking into one? – Selectman Morris old one before you’re on select board.

Selectman Jensen – discussion on STR should be agenda item due to topic discussed.


Columbus Day renaming

Chairman Caplain – recommendation to rename to Indigenous People’s day – requested by residents in town – Selectman Morris – similar to Juneteenth – deemphasizing Columbus and moving towards Indigenous People’s day from federal government – not officially changed by congress – Erin Talcott – sent request in October from last year – following other towns in NH – call to action by indigenous people in NH – Chris McGrath – think town should not change name as it is still on state level Columbus Day – ask for town vote if asking for change – can be petition warrant article – Selectman Queiroga – Juneteenth – absent from that meeting – Selectman Morris – federal holiday and not fully state – Selectman Queiroga – worried putting own views in front of state recognized holiday – Selectman Hibberd – should move forward for what’s important for town, not always follow state – Selectman Queiroga want to make sure it’s consistent so doesn’t show favoritism – Selectman Morris – some states in area recognize Indigenous People’s Day but some haven’t – Columbus day is a recent holiday – Selectman Queiroga – have any indigenous people asked to rename day or just concerned residents? – Selectman Hibberd – people talked to, didn’t ask heritage – Chairman Caplain – conflicted – still Columbus Day – Indigenous People Day is movement – heard woman speak at Colonial Theatre, powerful message – don’t want to speak for indigenous community and make decisions for them – Selectman Hibberd – is there a population that can be represented here that the board is or isn’t making decisions for them? – Chairman Caplain – who would we ask to proceed? – Selectman Hibberd – fine line with overstepping needs – Selectman Morris – movement started in the 1970’s started replacing Columbus Day – have been discussion for a long time – mainly in states with large Indigenous population – small population in NH – Erin Talcott – see chat transcript for info:

9:06:01 From  Erin Talcott (she/her)  to  Everyone : The Cowasuck Band of the Abenaki has suggested Indigenous People’s Day. They are part of Indigenous NH (which is part of a collaborative group)

19:06:12 From  Erin Talcott (she/her)  to  Everyone : Sorry it’s hard for me to come off mute right now

19:09:13 From  Erin Talcott (she/her)  to  Everyone : I meet monthly with the leaders of the Cowasuck Band (Paul and Denise Pouliot), so this is following their call to action for NH towns to rename to Indigenous People’s Day – they would definitely be open to talking to the town if there is interest in learning more



– lots of towns have not changed name but lots have – Clay Morris – though to consider, what is it going to cost town and taxes? – Chairman Caplain – touch bases with Erin this week – Chris McGrath – great that we’re making this longer than tonight – would like to reach out to both sides – Juneteenth costs town money with holiday pay


Bethlehem Gear Library

Chairman Caplain – grant to fill out library 2 striders, 2 training wheels, 3 regular kid’s bikes, helmets and backpacks – Selectman Hibberd – do they except used equipment? – Chairman Caplain – if not used, put on consignment to raise funds


Minutes 6/06/2022

Chairman Caplain – on record – page 3 in SB procedures discussion – Chris comment – chairman lobbying – Chairman Caplain – not case – reached out to counsel as well to gather information – not changing minutes, just adding information –

Selectman Morris made a motion to approve minutes from 6/6/2022 as written – Selectman Queiroga second – roll call – all – motion passed



Selectman Morris – spread word for Library – lots of masks and tests available for public if needed – can go through tests quickly if COVID in household – partnership with ACHS to make these available

Chairman Caplain – office hours signup sheet – please update

Chairman Caplain – bears – conservations with fish and game and Bethlehem PD – spoke with Whitings to fix dumpster on 56 Church Street, agreed to and have not fixed container currently – issue ordinance violation to Whiting’s and property owner – Selectman Hibberd/Selectman Morris – can only be property owner – Chairman Caplain – ask SB to issue violation regarding trash ordinance and bear ordinance – Selectman Morris – is trash leaving property – would like to see PD, Health officer, Building officer issue ordinance, not board singling out property – have form to issue violations – Selectman Morris – don’t want to vote on individual police matter – Tim with reach out to Chief DeMoranville to issue ticket – Selectman Jensen – how is this different from board asking PD to attend to matter? Have shied away in past – Selectman Queiroga – PD has mentioned can’t write ticket for violations and now that is fixed – Selectman Hibberd – select board not telling PD where to go, just giving them tools to issue fines

Nancy Strand – no mention – young people organize Bethlehem Community market at Gazebo next week 10-2 on Saturdays – staring this weekend.


Chairman Caplain made a motion to go to Non-public Session per RSA 91A-3 II (personnel) @ 7:24 – Selectman Queiroga seconded – roll call – all – motion passed


Chairman Caplain made a motion to hire CB @ $15.00/hr– Selectman Hibberd seconded roll call – all


Chairman Caplain made a motion to adjourn @ 7:27 Selectman Hibberd seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.



Respectfully submitted,

Tim Fleury

Administrative assistant



Item Board Member   Notes
Rocks: Bethlehem economic development Bruce   next couple weeks
ARPA fund discussion All   next meeting – 5/24
Speed feedback signs Bruce/All   ARPA monies
Zoning ordinance Veronica   being revised currently paying from ARPA money – being done by the Planning Board
EV Chargers Bruce   ARPA? – looking at grants currently
Bridge lighting for Safe Routes to School underpass on Profile Road Bruce   looking at grant monies
Employee paid time off policy Veronica and April   met and updated quotes for early June presentation
Employee short term/long term disability Veronica and April  
Get forms onto the Town website April/Tim/Veronica   working with Pam Sullivan to get it onto site
Agricultural Commission April   tough getting in touch with representatives in agriculture; April has a second farmer to come talk at a meeting
Conservation Commission page on the Town website Veronica/Tim/Sullivan Creative   working with Pam Sullivan to get it onto site
Storage All   July cabinets go in
Town Mailer re: how to contact board/get things done in town (magnet?) Ayla pricing   Mailer ~ $1000, Magnets ~ $3000 small magnet, Ayla to work on wording
Fire/Police station committee Ayla/Veronica   Progress – long endeavor – community volunteers came forward; agreed on objectives, working to get first meeting schedule
Food truck/vendor forms/process/Hawker & peddler’s license Veronica   Working on it
Short Term Rental ordinance  
Tickets so Police can enforce ordinances Tim/Veronica   Can use current tickets per counsel – perhaps have Chief DeMo talk to counsel to walk through the process; Tim to coordinate and be part of the call
Heritage roof bids Tim   could be structural issue with the building – need an engineer to assess
Brett – hours estimate to do water lines to community gardens Tim   $400 for supplies and man hours – how many hours? Tim to check if they need it year-round?
Reach out to new owners of Agassiz – trails, bike trails, touch base Bruce   Reached out to the owners on 6/7
Database to have primary resident/contact information All   Put on agenda for future discussion
56 Church Street – Animal and Trash Ordinance Tim   Tim to follow up with Chief DeMoranville to see if he feels we can fine under the ordinances
Senior Dog Licenses Tim   Tim to gather information on cost to get a dog license, and cost to the Town to issue them