Minutes of the Selectboard Meeting of Wednesday, June 26, 2013 at 6:30 PM
Members present: Christopher Ashley; Ed Childs; Linda Cook; Keith Moran; Neil Fulton, Town
Manager; Nancy Kramer, Assistant to the Town Manager. Absent: Stephen Flanders.
There were 8 people in the audience.
Also participating: George Clark, Tom Gray, Andy Hodgdon, Chris Huston, Nate Stearns, Richard
Cook opened the meeting at 6:30 pm.
1. Approval of Agenda (Action Item). By consensus the Selectboard approved the Agenda.
2. Public Comments. Childs reminded townspeople that the annual Norwich Fair is July 11th
through 14th. Cook said the Norwich churches rummage sale is July 12th through July 14th. They
will be accepting rummage July 8th through July 11th.
3. Town Manager’s Report (Discussion). FY13 paving program on Elm Street and Hobson Road
is being completed. Storm sewer work on Main Street will start after the fair. This is in
preparation for paving next year. The filing for the formal application for the CPG is being
prepared for submission in early July. The comment period ends on June 28th and no objections
have been sent to our attorney so far. The communications shelter has been delivered to the
Public Works location. Power has been installed and communications connection should be
finished this week. The current schedule is for Public Works to be operational in early July, Police
by the end of July and Fire/EMS by the end of August. Grievances will be completed this week
and Fulton expects that the Grand List will be lodged by July 2nd. There were 149 grievances
which are up from the previous Town-wide reappraisal. The Energy Committee received four
responses to a request for information for the private development of solar power. Fulton said that
we have been experiencing problems with the server mostly related to the new property appraisal
software and consequently he has moved up the time to replace the server to this year using
monies from the Town Reappraisal Reserve Fund. There was some discussion on the monies for
the new server and the work on Main Street.
4. Finance – Board to Sign Accounts Payable/Warrants (Action Item). Childs moved (2nd Ashley)
to approve Check Warrant Report #14-02 for General Fund in the amount of $151,811.84 for the
period from 7/1/13 to 7/1/13. Motion passed. Ashley moved (2nd Childs) to approve Check
Warrant Report #13-38 for General Fund in the amount of $38,965.16, for Police Cruiser Fund in
the amount of $58.36, for Fire Equipment Fund in the amount of $1,275 and for Communications
Construction Fund in the amount of $14,622.82 for the period from 6/14/13 to 6/26/13. Motion
passed. Childs moved (2nd Ashley) to approve Accounts Payable Warrant #14-01 Health
Savings Accounts in the amount of $17,875. Motion passed.
8. Reappointment of Linda Cook and Stephen Leinoff as Norwich Town Forest Fire Warden and
Deputy Fire Warden, Respectively (Action Item). Cook said that the Selectboard has received a
letter from Jim Esden from the Agency of Natural Resources indicating that Cook and Leinoff have
agreed to be reappointed and the State has indicated their approval by signing the reappointment
form. Afterwards, Childs moved (2nd Ashley) to reappoint Linda Cook and Stephen Leinoff as the
Town Forest Fire Warden and Deputy Town Forest Fire Warden, respectively, for a term to
commence July 1, 2013 and terminate on June 30, 2018. Motion passed. Cook abstained.
9. Selectboard Priorities and Calendar for 2013-14 (Discussion). Ashley questioned whether the
Board would have the Capital Improvement Programming Analysis by December 11th. Ashley
also asked that preparation for Town Meeting be added to the February Selectboard meetings.
Cook noted the break in meetings between July 15th and August 28th.
10. Correspondence (Please go to www.norwich.vt.us, click on Boards & Committees from the
blue banner, click on Selectboard and click on Recent Selectboard Correspondence in the middle
section to view resident correspondence):
a) Resident –
1) #10 a) and b). Letter from Elaine Warshell Re: Town Manager’s Refusal to Follow
Vermont Law and Letter from Demo Sofronas Re: Letter of Thanks. Fulton said that
Warshell also sent a letter to the Listers and that she has grieved. Flanders’ response
to Warshell was discussed. Fulton noted that Flanders did the response in order to
timely note the process. Moran questioned the propriety of Flanders doing this as Chair
of the Selectboard. Ashley and Childs indicated that they were comfortable with his
letter. Cook said that she believes that this is another example of the Board not
addressing people together. Cook would like to review the procedures again.
Afterwards, Childs moved (2nd Ashley) to receive letters from Elaine Warshell re: Town
Manager’s refusal to follow Vermont law and Demo Sofronas re: letter of thanks.
a) Approval of the Minutes of the 5/22/13 Meeting. After making one change, Ashley moved
(2nd Childs) to approve the minutes of the May 22, 2013 Selectboard meeting, as
amended. Motion passed.
b) Review of Next Agendas (Discussion/Possible Action Item). Setting the tax rate, late filing
of Homestead Declarations, revised Investment Policy, the Solar Project, an update on the
Norwich Pool and a discussion of response to correspondence were listed as possible
items on the agenda for July 15th.
5. 7:00 pm – Facilities Planning Process – Bread Loaf (Discussion). Fulton said that Bread Loaf
has been retained to complete Part 3, functional and space needs program, and Part 4, alternative
development and analysis for the Norwich Fire, Police and Public Works facilities. Chris Huston is
the Architecture Operations Manager for Bread Loaf and will be the Project Team Leader. Huston
passed out a preliminary project schedule to those present. Huston then reviewed the schedule
saying that he had already had the kick-off meeting with Fulton and the three Department Heads
and has also met individually with the Department Heads. He is scheduled to meet twice with the
Selectboard and twice with the Capital Facilities Committee in Part 3. His team will develop a
functional and space needs program for the Fire, Police, and Public Works Departments for both
five and twenty-year time frames. They will look at exterior needs, shared opportunities, square
foot and functional requirements as well as utility needs and site requirements. The preliminary
schedule suggests a public forum be held in July. Fulton said this could be pushed off until after
school starts. In Part 4 Bread Loaf will evaluate the three sites given them by Fulton. They will do
schematic designs, estimates of probable costs and then rank them. Feedback from the
Selectboard and Capital Facilities Committee meetings and the public forums will be applied.
Total project budget and schedule will be developed as well as an informational brochure for the
public. In this preliminary schedule all tasks would be completed by the end of the year. Items
discussed were: what is included in the total project costs, feedback, making sure facilities are
expandable, putting the information on the Town website, getting the Finance Committee involved,
the three sites, when the bond vote might be, that the Town is responsible for the cost of any
appraisals and that the schedule can be modified as necessary. All preconstruction work will
happen in-house at Bread Loaf. Stearns asked that it be made known to the public that doing
nothing is not an alternative and that baseline costs as well as alternatives be included.
6. 7:30 pm – Meeting with Conservation Commission (Discussion). Postponed due to no one
from the Commission being able to make the meeting.
7. 7:45 pm – Meeting with Milton Frye Nature Area Committee (Discussion). Clark said the
Committee manages the 35-acre Norwich Nature Area which is owned by the Town and
conserved by the Upper Valley Land Trust. The Committee is always looking for new
membership. The Committee also does educational programs including an old apple tree pruning
clinic. Future goals include: continuing to be the launch site for the fireworks, redoing fencing,
improving the orchard and widening trails. They appreciate the assistance of the Public Works
Department and would love to have more Town resources.
Cook explained why the agenda had been changed for those who came later and again asked for
any public comments. There were none.
Ashley moved (2nd Moran) to adjourn. Motion passed. Meeting adjourned at 7:51 pm.
Approved by the Selectboard on August 28, 2013.
By Nancy Kramer
Assistant to the Town Manager
Stephen N. Flanders
Next Regular Meeting – July 15, 2013 at 6:30 PM
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