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Meeting Minutes

October 17, 2006

Leicester Select Board Meeting

Unapproved Minutes


Board Members Present:

John McDonough, Bob Oliver, Diane Benware and Cecile Todd


Board Members Absent: Mark Stacey


Townspeople Present: Donna Pidgeon, Arlan Pidgeon, Mary Hughes, John Hughes, Lawrence Felion Jr., John Quelch, Bonnie Johnson, Charles Johnson, Dana Cole-Levesque, Connie Carroll, Bucky Shackett, Roger Scarborough


The meeting was called to order at 7pm.

Pledge was recited.

Agenda was reviewed.  The order of the agenda was altered.


New Business

Otter Valley School Bond

Discussion:  The residents of Leicester should have already received a flyer in the mail explaining the Otter Valley School bond, which will be on the ballot in November.  Connie Carroll noted that Rob Naylor chaired the committee and she felt he brought his knowledge and expertise to the project.  School budgets have been tight; therefore, some maintenance has been deferred.  The physical plant has roof and sewer problems.  The airflow, electric and heating are out of date and code.  If you attempt to update one of the problems, you are required to do them all.  There is a need for more gym space.  When the original gym was built, there were four teams who used the gym in the winter months.  Currently, there are 22 teams using the gymnasium in the winter. Connie Carroll stated her opinion that athletic facilities encourage kids to be involved and off the streets.  The bond issue is a 10 million dollar plan.  The state guarantees to pay 30% therefore it are 7 million over 30 years.  Initially, $600,000 would be added to the school budget each year.  As the years progress, the amount will lessen.  Safety issues have been addressed in the plan.  The plan has the office at the front of the building with glass so that anyone entering can be seen.  If the bond issue passes in November, it will go out to bid in January and February. The state discourages bids going out in the spring.  The project would begin in the summer.  It would be a two-year project.  The ten million could not be split up without resubmitting the plan to the state.  The state guarantee of 30% only lasts through the calendar year.  Mrs. Carroll was not certain if the bond issue would be on the March ballot in the event of defeat.  There will be a tunnel that runs under the road and away from the buses.  Currently, there are safety concerns regarding dropping off and picking up students.  A blue print will be left at the town hall for residents to view.  The old wood shop would become a regular classroom.  The new woodshop is under the gym and would meet safety regulations and reflect the needs of potential employers.  Informational nights and tours of Otter Valley will be Oct 21, Oct 28 and Nov 6.

Action: none


Mowing Bids

Discussion: John Quelch, cemetery committee representative shared that the committee had looked at the proposed wording of the mowing bid.  He noted that last year the tombstones occasionally had cut grass on them.  He reported seeing locust tree saplings as tall as three feet. The successful bidder would be expected to meet with sexton prior to the mowing season.  He suggested deleting the number of mowings (approximately 20). Bids are being discussed now so that they can be budgeted. An ad will be placed in the local papers.  Thursday, Nov 2 is the last day ad will run in the papers.  Saturday, Nov 4 is a mandatory review of specs at the cemetery. Bids will go to the cemetery committee in care of John Quelch. The cemetery committee meets November 16.  The select board meets November 20. The cemetery committee and select board will work together on the bids.

Other:  John Quelch volunteered to mulch in the spring as long as the board purchases the mulch.

Action:  Diane Benware will place a two-week ad in the Addison Independent and Brandon papers.  The ad will direct bidders to mail bids to John Quelch.


Approval of Minutes

September 18, 2006

Discussion:  On page 2 of 5 add that Cecile Todd asked Ron Fisk for the questions and answers to be in writing. 

Action:  Cecile Todd made a motion to accept the minutes as corrected.  John McDonough seconded.  Motion passed. 4 - 0


October 2, 2006

Discussion:  Page 2 under emergency preparedness, discussion #2 should read:  Three persons need to be listed as community members willing to step in during an emergency situation to act for the select board.

                    Page 2 under reports from town officials and committees, add Action:   John McDonough made a motion to have two no jake brake signs installed.  One will be near the Kupfer residence going west.  The other will be near Louise Adams residence coming east.  Bob Oliver seconded.  Motion passed 4, 0.

                     Page 3, change heading from Paving Rt 53 to Driveway Sealing.

Change DNF to D and F.

                    Page 3, add the heading Paving Route 53 above the third discussion, delete Old School Rd.  Change DeLoran Rd to DeLorm Rd.,  Delete Ferson was paved (80%) with grant money.

                     Page 3, under TAC delete these are markers.

                     Page 4, under discussion#1, change Tom Baird to Tom Bahre

                     Page 4, under honor roll signs, delete There is a sign in Brandon at the Congregational Church that would give someone an idea of what the sign would look like. Change sentence four to read:  It would cost $200 to install which is included in the $927 price.

                     Page 5, under discussion #1 change sentence 3 to read:  He asked about the sign his family had requested.

Action:  Cecile Todd made a motion to accept the minutes as corrected.  John McDonough seconded.  Motion passed. 4 - 0


Other:  Charles Johnson requested that the size, wording and installation of the sign his family requested be taken care of by the next meeting.


Other: Cecile Todd asked if it would be possible to get the minutes sooner.  It was explained that the minutes have been submitted by the required time. 

Action:  Secretary will email minutes to those board members who have email addresses.  Donna Pidgeon will attempt to get minutes to the other board members sooner.


Other: Both no brake signs are gone already.  Bonnie Johnson suggested cementing the signs the next time. Consideration will be given to install in a way that is difficult.  This will be discussed at the next meeting.


Review and Sign Orders for bill payments

Discussion: Cecile Todd questioned the Ferson culvert bill.  The total bill has not been submitted yet.  Dave Lathrop had told Arlan Pidgeon that he had more money to apply to the project.  Kathy Eastwood and Bucky Shackett submitted a bill for their time to view property when acting as zoning chair and health officer respectively.

Action:  Bills were reviewed and signed.


Reports from Town Officials or Committees

Discussion:  Arlan Pidgeon had called Dave Lathrop to inspect and approve the culvert on Ferson Rd. Arlan Pidgeon will call again. Donna Swinger gave permission to the board to cross her property to do what was necessary to address the beaver dam lodges that are causing culvert and road issues.  Mr. Maloney has not given permission as of yet.  Tom Bahre is ready to blast as soon as the water level is down and landowners grant permission. The dam in the woods may actually be in Brandon.  Arlan Pidgeon will update the board as needed.


Discussion:  Donna Pidgeon reported that James Maroney owns land on the Leicester/Whiting Road that he is willing to discuss as a potential site for a new town shed.

Action:  The property will be place on a potential site list.


Better Back Roads

Discussion: Linda Boudette and Rick Kehne were contacted to get some sense of storm water litigation grants and their advice.  

    They confirmed that leftover money from a grant written for land purchase for a new shed could be used to purchase a shed. 

     Hooker Road is a prime storm water litigation grant site.  The board was advised that it could submit two grants.

     South of Mark Stacey’s home two loads of white stone were dumped in the ditch.  Arlan Pidgeon stated it was probably put there because of water collecting at that particular spot.  He felt that the stone would not hurt anything, and perhaps help the water situation. Linda Boudett and Rick Kehne had suggested putting stones there as long as it did not plug the culvert.

     The driveway before Mongers on DeLorm Rd has ruts.  Property owners are requesting a culvert be installed.  Arlan Pidgeon stated that work was needed on both sides of the road.  He suggested cutting off the shoulder south of Mongers and on through to Wilcox’s.

Action:  Arlan Pidgeon will go and check the site where stone were dumped and the site where a culvert has been requested.


Neighbor Works of Western Vermont

Discussion:  This is a nonprofit organization that has been in existence for twenty years.  They rehab houses.  Five projects have been approved last month.  Leicester residents can use these services. A letter of support for their programs was requested.  Cecile Todd noted that this does not obligate the town nor does it cost anything.

Action:  The board signed the letter.


Vermont Revolt and Appeal

Discussion:  This is an organization working to repeal statewide property taxes.  The resolution was read into the minutes.  The letter asked the board to adopt a similar resolution. The measure is nonbinding and advisory in nature.  A copy of the letter will be kept on file.

Action:  John McDonough made a motion to sign.  Bob Oliver seconded. Motion passed 4 ayes and 0 nays.  Cecile Todd will email the signed letter prior to tomorrow night’s meeting.


 Zoning Issues

Discussion:  At the last meeting, Diane Benware started to read Jim Carrol’s answers to the board questions.  Jim Carroll was asked to put the question as well as the answers in writing.  Following this, Jim Carroll advised the board that his response should not be discussed in public.  It would be considered client/attorney privilege. Discussion should be in executive session litigation.

Action:  none


Honor Roll

Discussion:  Bucky Shackett had requested this conversation be revisited because the discussion seemed to get out of control at the last meeting.  John McDonough restated that the original idea was to restore or duplicate the sign.  The sign is beyond repair.  Lawrence Felion Jr asked what it would cost to put the rest of the veterans from Leicester on the sign.  Bonnie Johnson shared that Dick Bullick of the American Legion is able to get the names.  An honor roll has veteran names of who are alive and deceased.  A star is placed by the names of those who have passed. John McDonough noted that two bids have been placed for the first sign project.

 Action: John McDonough made a motion to duplicate the current sign in a fashion that would represent the sign as it was originally designed.  Bob Oliver seconded.  Motion passed. 3 ayes and 1 nay (Diane Benware: wanted one sign to hold all names) After this vote, Charlie Johnson asked the board to start the process of making a new honor roll sign to honor veterans after WWII.  He donated $50.00 to the project.  Diane Benware donated $25.00. Diane Benware made a motion to appropriate or petition funds to purchase a second honor roll sign that would honor veterans after WWII.  Bob Oliver seconded.  Motion passed.  It was suggested that perhaps the historical society would help financially and with time for the second sign project.


Insurance Renewal

Discussion:  In the October 2 minutes VLCT was to be contacted regarding insurance for the town’s buildings and equipment.  It was reported that the buildings have been appraised within the last four year. If the values are very wrong, they can be changed and resubmitted.  The historical buildings will be reappraised next year.  Diane Benware went over the listed values for buildings and equipment.  It was felt that some were inadequate. 

Action: Diane Benware will call Tina Feehy to review contents and how changes would affect premiums.


Signs on Route 53 and Fern Lake Road

Discussion:  Arlan Pidgeon shared that the state wants correct the placement of the signs. He can ship back the bases.

Action:  Arlan Pidgeon will change the signs to follow state regulations.  He will ship back the bases.

Nurse’s Association

Discussion:  At Lake Dunmore the sign that was purchased by the Nurse’s Association as a memorial to Frank Wykes who was killed by a drunk driver has been stolen. 

Action:  The Nurse’s Association will be contacted to see if they will replace the sign.



Discussion: none

Action:  Motion was made to adjourn by Cecile Todd.  Bob Oliver seconded. Motion passed. 4 ayes and 0 nays.


Respectfully Submitted,

Betty Wiedenbein


The next regular schedule meeting is Monday, November 6, 2006 at 7pm.