10/18/2021 SB Minutes
TOWN OF BETHLEHEM
2155 Main Street
Bethlehem, NH 03574
Bethlehem Board of Selectmen
October 18, 2021
In person – Chairman Boisseau, Selectman Hibberd, Selectman Caplain, Selectman Morris, Selectman Jensen
Chairman Boisseau opened the meeting at 6:01pm and reminded people to leave their microphones on mute. He continued to remind in person participants to use the microphone so Zoom participants can hear
Barry Zitser – Noyes St – brief discussion on range and potential transfer station – congrats to PD and select board to regionalize training – Mr. Zitser stated he is a member of the transfer station committee – does not represent the committee tonight. He believes it makes sense to use site for both uses moving forward. He gave the board schematics that lay out the proposed transfer station from the past. There has been no decision made yet for recommendation to the board regarding the transfer station. Mr. Zitser asked to reconsider having insurance company come and look at range plans, it’s a good resource to use for the town. Thanked board for their work on issue. The board thanked Barry.
Nancy Strand – 3 questions – Has there been work for improving internet access as a town? Selectman Jensen – have been trying for more than 2 years with Consolidated and Spectrum, in his opinion they are not interested in expanding coverage. He has been working with a group of towns to expand offerings. Ms. Strand appreciates the work being done – Selectman Caplain – the energy commission has reached out looking for funding for solar project and Grafton County stated they are focusing first on increasing internet access in county. Is AirBnb back on the agenda? In research stages? – Selectman Morris drafted an ordinance for board members to review and code officer, fire chief, and PD. Ms. Strand – discouraged that more people in town don’t attend meetings. FaceBook can be used to promote meetings. At voting day sign-up sheet for meeting notices for those that don’t use FaceBook – Selectman Jensen – excellent idea and we are already doing that – Bethlehem News every Monday – 550 people at the moment – Ms. Strand – thanked CJ for sending out Bethlehem News.
Energy Committee – Solar bid update
David Van Houten and Dan Crosby – Mr. Van Houten gave a background of the solar project to date including financing options. They received 5 proposals for the project. All of the companies are known and do good work. Bids came in from $400k to $600k. The committee is recommending Barrington Power. They came in at the second lowest $415k. Selectman Jensen confirmed if it was the same developer as the Profile Project. It is. Selectman Caplain stated the energy committee is active in searching out additional funding for the project and have found an estimated $50-60k with the condition of matching it with ARPA funds. The board discussed the project and the next steps.
Selectman Caplain made a motion to go with Barrington Power for the town solar array. Chairman Boisseau seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
David Van Houten – town building heating system update– recommendations from the engineer – $10k to fix existing system, $75k pellet system, $200k to aid heat pumps – current system upgrade/fix best way to move forward –Selectman Hibberd – could it be built in agreement to stick with maintenance? – Dan Crosby – performance contracts could add to it – seems reasonable to ask for it.
Public input – none
Selectman Morris makes motion for RFP for repair to town hall boiler system – Selectman Caplain seconded – roll call – all – motion passed
Speed Feedback Sign
Selectman Caplain – speeding down 142 – reached out to DOT – expensive $10k each – solar with own pole. Selectman Caplain reached out to a company that meets DOT – quote – under $3500 per sign. Thew board discussed the need to reach out to the highway department, FD, and PD for suggestions on sign placement. Permanent installation that is powered by solar panels.
Rita Farrell – Ms. Farrell thanked the board for looking into the speeding issues on Agassiz. She discussed with the board other options to add to the efficiency of the new signage.
Eddie and Cathy Qi – solar for each sign look into using existing posts to add signs – simple signage without electricity to start could be effective as well.
Police equipment purchase
Chairman Boisseau – The PD is requesting 2 new tasers to replace non-functioning units – $5342.08 from capital fund.
Selectman Caplain made a motion to approve the purchase of 2 taser units with funds from the capital reserve fund. – Selectman Hibberd seconded – roll call – all – motion passed
Library Trustee appointment
Chairman Boisseau – The library is recommending Rhienna Miscio to fill vacant library trustee position.
Selectman Hibberd made a motion to appoint Rhienna Miscio to fill the vacant library trustee position – Selectman Jensen seconded – roll call – all – motion passed
Chairman Boisseau – The town is paying for former blinking light at intersection of route 302 and 142.
Selectman Morris made a motion to close account for unused blinking light. – Selectman Hibberd seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
Transfer of funds from rec special revenue fund to rec general fund
Chairman Boisseau – The rec director suggested moving $12,000 budget in the rec special revenue fund into the recreation general fund to offset increase in salaries in 2021.
Selectman Hibberd made a motion to transfer the funds from the recreation special revenue fund into the recreation general fund – Selectman Morris seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
Other/Follow up from board
Fire Dept purchasing from capital fund
Selectman Morris – spoke with chief regarding purchase – individual items below limit of purchasing policy – NFPA standards 10-year replacement – 8 sets of gear – $22,104 from safety equipment capital fund –
Chairman Boisseau made a motion to approve the purchase of fire department gear from the safety equipment capital reserve fund – Selectman Caplain seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.
Overpayment 405-055 – $1645.84 –
Selectman Morris made a motion for refund of over payment of $1645.84 for map/lot 405 – 055 – Selectman Hibberd seconded – roll call – all – motion passed
Selectman Jensen – planning board talked about reviewing all regulations – figures of $8k or more to review regulations and policies – asking board to use $10k of ARPA funds to review policies and regulation. – VW diesel mitigation fund – complicated process to apply for funding and review funding yearly – list Bethlehem with State as interested town for location if other parties want to add stations – board agrees – Selectman Morris – route 302 is designated corridor for charging locations – Selectman Caplain – basketball locations or pool parking lots good spots for chargers – Selectman Morris – some towns very specific on locations when added to list – does Bethlehem want to get specific? Selectman Hibberd rather leave it open.
Selectman Jensen – talking with police chief – possibility of using 116 as range and transfer station together – board input on working with chief and transfer station committee to work towards joint facility – board agrees.
Selectman Morris – purchase policy from past – inflation since policy written – talked about raising limits on different levels of purchases – Selectman Hibberd – came up at least a year ago, no bids were taken for specific item purchase. The town attorney weighed in and recommended making it more clear for special situations.
Minutes – 10/04/2021
Selectman Caplain made a motion to accept the minutes from 10/04/2021 – Selectman Hibberd seconded – roll call – all less Chairman Boisseau (abstain) – motion passed
At 7:23 pm Chairman Boisseau made a motion to go to Non-public Session per RSA 91A-3 II (reputation) Selectman Hibberd seconded – roll call – all
Selectman Hibberd made a motion to seal non-public minutes based on RSA 91-A:3 III, (adverse effect on reputation) – Chairman Boisseau seconded – roll call – all – motion passed
Selectman Caplain made a motion to adjourn at 8:32pm – Chairman Boisseau seconded – roll call – all – motion passed.