Welcome to Leicester, VT

A Great Place to Live

Meeting Minutes

Town of Leicester

Special Selectboard Meeting

Wed., March 1, 2006

Unapproved Minutes




Present:  J. McDonough, R. Oliver, M. Stacey, C. Todd, D. Benware (recorder)


Other:  Jerry Flint, Tweeter Felion, Donna Pidgeon


Meeting called to order at 7:12 p.m.


Under other business:


  1. John McDonough informed the Board that town counsel had called him, at the Chair’s request, to speak to him about the issue of permits for Vermont Sun triathlons.  The Commissioner of Public Safety is required to seek the town’s input before issuing permits for the races this summer.  Mr. Carroll has offered to complete the necessary documents on behalf of the town.  ACTION:  John made the motion, second by Bob, to authorize the Chair to contact Mr. Carroll, to put the “town’s issues” in writing in response to the request by the Commissioner of Public Safety.  The motion passed unanimously.


  1. Ferson Road culvert grant amendment:  Chair had written to Dave Lathrop requesting an amendment/extension of the grant to complete the Ferson Road project.  Dave responded by sending a blank agreement form to be signed by the Board and returned to him.  ACTION:  The Chair completed the form, which was signed by the Board, after discussion about the need for such work.


  1. Dave Lathrop of AOT John, and Bob met at Bridge #4, on Old Jerusalem Road today, in response to the Board’s request to get Dave’s opinion about the condition of the bridge.  This was prompted by the inspection report that Mike Hedges of AOT sent for our signature.  Dave indicated that the work done in 1998 met the standards at the time.  It is believed that the bridge is good for another dozen years.  It is believed that our signature on the inspection report simply acknowledges that we received it, not that we are necessarily in agreement with it.  ACTION:  Chair was authorized to contact Mike Hedges, in light of Dave’s comments, and to clarify what our signature on the report means, as well as detailing any next steps.


  1. Chair read letter from Russell Velander of AOT, requesting that towns submit mileage of Class 2 roads that need repair/retreatment so that the state can determine how many miles of roadway will get center striping done this year.  ACTION:  John made the motion, Bob made the second to authorize the Chair to contact Mr. Velander to request that our 2005 paving be done this year, in response to resident complaints and concern.


  1. Chair circulated copy of Finance and Maintenance Agreement re: Bridge #6, that the town entered into with the state in 1995, spelling out that we are responsible for 10% of engineering costs, right-of-way costs, utility costs, etc.  Rep. Jewett is prepared to speak about bridge costs at Town Meeting.  Chair and Town Clerk had conversations with Roger Whitcomb of VTrans who indicated that he is getting the signatures needed for a time-payment plan and that we will receive a copy as soon as all necessary signatures are secured.  It is believed that April 1 is the start of the month-by-month payment.  Town Clerk will check with Finance Office to make sure we are not charged interest on the statement dated Jan. 31, 2006.  The town will also want our counsel to review the payment plan before we sign.


  1. Chair informed the Board that Stephen Blaise has responded to Mr. Carroll’s letter, saying he is not responsible for the cost of fighting the fires on the Blaise property.  Chair to contact Mr. Carroll as to next steps.


  1. No word yet from Whiting Fire Dept about meeting to discuss possible fire protection for town of Leicester.


The Warning and Budget were reviewed.

Article 1:  no comment

Article 2:  clarified that taxes are due on Oct. 15, 2006

Article 3:  no comment

Article 4:  discussion about planning for professional audit of the’07 books in ’08.  Need to take into account GASBY regulations.

Compared 2006 proposed Town budget with the 2005 Town budget






2006      2005

total $ 191,332.72                                                              total $ 151,649.00


less                  30,000.00             reappraisal this year only

                                                      (mandatory cost)

less                    2,500.00            for ’08 audit  *


less                    1,000.00            enhancement/resident request            **


less                    5,000.00            on the job-training ***

                                                      (majority of the board recommends)


balance       $ 152,832.72                                                                         $ 151,649.00


                                    $ 152,832.72

                        less      $ 151,649.00

    difference    $     1,183.72  over last year, keep in mind increases for fuel, postage, insurance, and $2,000 additional to assist the professional appraisers.


*  Currently an audit is due to be conducted every third year.  The next audit is scheduled for 2008.   The firm that conducted the 2005 audit, R.F. Lavigne, no longer handles municipal audits.  It is the Board’s best estimate that the 2008 audit will cost at least $10,000.00.  We feel it is prudent to set aside money each year, rather than budgeting the total amount in one year.  Item 4 in the Warning requests voters to indicate whether or not they wish to rescind prior instruction to continue to have an audit of the town books conducted every third year.  If the town voters vote “Yes”, the budget is reduced by $2,500.00.


** The $1,000.00 for Community Development was placed in the budget, in response to a request from a resident, to provide seed money or a possible “match” for a suggested project of a gazebo, etc on the Town Green.  Ideas are being solicited for enhancement of the area at the Four Corners.


*** The $5,000.00 for on-the-job training was placed in the budget in response to the Town Clerk’s suggestion that the budget contain funding to train a possible replacement

for her.  Several people expressed some interest in the position last year, but there was no money to pay anyone to attempt to learn about the many responsibilities of the Town Clerk/Treasurer.  This amount would pay for someone to get on-the-job training while working with Donna for several months.  It is understood that this person would run for the office once Donna tendered her resignation.  The majority of the Board felt this was a pro-active measure that would provide stability and a smooth transition.



Comparing 2006 Highway costs to 2005 Highway costs:

2006      2005


$ 249,900.00                                                    $ 172,000.00


less           55,000.00   bridge costs (one time only)

less             6,000.00   increased payroll

less            5,000.00   increases for gravel, materials

less             2,000.00   for ditching

less           10,000.00   for bridge agreement


balance $ 171,900.00                                                    $ 172,000.00


If you “back” out the above costs/increases there is a $ 100.00 difference between 2005 and 2006.



Consideration of Articles to be voted by Australian ballot:

Voting at Town Office.

Article 1:  no comment

Article 2:  usual and customary request.  Applications for the “2 for 1” paving due 3/17/06.  A predetermined (Road Commissioners) length of roadway will be resurfaced.


Article 3:  Either the voters approve of placing the $45,00 plus interest into a land/building acquisition fund or the funds stay where they are.  Upcoming VOSHA regulations and/or federal mandates, as well as location to wetlands limits future development on the current site.

Article 4:  allocations, if approved, total $9,378.50



Kudos to the auditors:  The 2004 Town Report received a merit award for presentation/content.


Motion to adjourn made at 8:43 p.m. by Bob, second by Mark and John.


Meeting adjourned at 8:43 p.m.


Respectfully submitted:


Diane Benware