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Meeting Minutes

Town of Leicester

Selectboard Meeting Minutes


Monday, April 6, 2009




** See subsequent minutes for any changes


Members Present:  Diane Benware, Bob Oliver, Ken Young, Ron Fiske, Tom Barker


Others Present:   Arlan & Donna Pidgeon, Julie Delphia, John & Mary Hughes, Virginia Wolf, Kate Briggs, Cecile Todd, Mathew Brush, Hannah Sessions,  Sandra Trombley, Secretary


Call to Order:  Meeting called to order at 6:31 p.m. by Chair, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance. 


Agenda Review:  Agenda reviewed. 


Approve Minutes:


The minutes for March 16, 2009 meeting were reviewed.  Motion by Ken to approve minutes.  Seconded by Tom.  All in favor.  So approved.


The minutes for March 25, 2009 meeting were reviewed.  Motion by Tom to approve minutes.  Seconded by Ron.  All in favor.  So approved.


Review and Sign Orders for Payment:


Bills making their rounds. 


Weight Permits:


Arlan reviewed permits and approved.  Arlan will follow up with Carrara and Wright.  Bob will sign others.


Reports from Town Officials & Committees: 




Julie reported that to date she has registered approximately 160 dogs which still leaves a good chunk that are either deceased, moved or delinquent.  In the past we have sent out late notices and said that the animal control officer would impose a fine if they weren’t paid by the end of May.  Julie was looking for some guidance as to how to proceed.  Does the Selectboard want to send out a postcard with a May 30 date, or a $50 fine?   Tom thinks it is less than $50.


Virginia Wolf offered to make phone calls.  Julie is not sure how current and accurate the phone numbers are.  Julie doesn’t know who has new dogs since the census was taken.  The official dog census was done in 2006.


Kate Briggs noted that if there is going to be a fine there has to be legal written notice.


Action:  Diane will contact Brian Webb and double check on statute and if it signifies how much you can charge for late fees.


Julie requested the Selectboard give her authorization to pay the Federal and State withholding deposits when due at the end of month and quarter and follow up to include them in the packet for signature.


Motion by Tom to give the Town Treasurer authorization to pay the Federal and State withholdings and deposits when due and follow up to include information in the packet for Selectboard signature at the next subsequent meeting.  Second by Ron.  All in favor.  So approved.


Kate Briggs offered information that both these payments can be made on line.


Julie had someone ask her if there was an approval previously to have the Treasurer sign paychecks that were less than $200 prior to the next Selectboard meeting.  The reason it came up was because of a three week lag between Selectboard meetings.  The answer was “no”, everyone will need to wait.


Julie asked for clarification on ordering software upgrades which would be done by a credit card.  The board would like to know about the purchases in advance of order.  Julie needs to order an upgrade for Quick Books for $160 and she needs to do that by the end of April or they will stop support of the payroll system.  For important upgrades such as this, Julie can operate within the budget.  Any items that are more discretionary in nature should come before the Selectboard.  Final bills will be agreed upon by the Selectboard.


Julie is working on budget comparisons and will have something sometime in May.  It will show the % spent of the budget.  It will give an idea of how we are doing.




Cecile advised that the new district advisor is coming tomorrow to work with us between 9:00 and 9:30.  The Selectboard is more than welcome to come.


Ike and Cecile would like to go to a couple of classes in May.  Cecile stated the Town gets money toward listers education classes.  Cecile will ask the district advisor about education funds, how much the Town will get, and how the Town gets paid.


There is $1,000 in the budget for workshops and training for town-wide personnel.  We need to be careful.  Last year, the Town went over budget.


The Listers want to run by the new district advisor; about sealing the 2007 grand list.


Ike and Cecile got all parcels done by the 1st of April.  They are not on the books yet.  Cecile will keep the Selectboard posted.


Diane mentioned that two weeks from tonight the board will be looking at any letters of interest for the lister’s position.


Zoning Administrator:


Kate has been reviewing outstanding files and going over things with Ron.  She has had a number of inquiries.  She will welcome any input anyone has.  Kate is enthusiastic about the position.


Road Foreman:


Arlan reported that they have been working on the dirt roads, hauling gravel, grading.  Tom mentioned that there is a tree down on Hooker Road.  Road signs need changing due to vandalism.  Sign on Shackett Road is tipped over.


Virginia Wolf asked how long Rte.53 will be closed.  Tom stated, hopefully, another four weeks.


Tom mentioned that just South of Frances Monroe there are some car parts/debris that has been thrown out. 


Action:  Arlan will pick up parts/debris.


Tom reported that the house is gone on the Coons property.  There is still scrap to be cleaned up.


Action:  Diane to contact Bucky Shackett to check out property and sign off.


Julie has a calendar out on the board for Lister’s and Zoning Administrator’s schedule.  If they are not going to be there on scheduled days, please let Julie know so she can advise persons that call.



New Business:


Matt Brush and Hannah Sessions. representatives from the school board, came to talk about the subject of the discussion with Whiting folks of a Leicester/Whiting school merger. 


The preliminary plans would be that we would renovate the Leicester Central School.  It would be a Leicester project, not a Leicester/Whiting project.  Leicester would hold ownership.  Whiting would be sharing operation costs to save money for both towns.  That would be the easy part.  The hard part, would be working out some of the details.  Some parents have concerns logistically, teachers, school board, etc.  One of the big pieces of concern would be our current traffic flow and current pick up and drop off plan.


Discussion about adjacent properties and Route 7 is a limited access highway.   Discussion about septic systems and alternate septic systems, new parking area for cars and buses, adjacent parcels of land, defined traffic flow for buses.  Discussion about a pedestrian only walk way.  Weather, convenience, comfort level are areas of concern.


There is a sample contract agreement.  There is protection from both sides.  Right now, this is very far down the road.


Conversations are not over with Salisbury.  We just haven’t had as many conversations.  Salisbury is more complicated going to a different district.


Virginia Wolf talked with the head of the legal department at the Board of Education.  They talked about Leicester and Whiting being in Addison County and they don’t belong in Rutland County schools, they belong in the Addison County schools.  His answer was that all these children could be moved into Salisbury School without any problem and Whiting children could be moved into Cornwall without any problem.  There is a State law that you can put your children in any school that you want.  He agreed that these two schools are not in the district they belong in.  Virginia will give Matt the phone number of the person she talked with.


The Selectboard thanked Matt & Hannah for their time and information.


Green Up Day:


Lem Palmer will be willing to pick up green up bags/debris/appliances for $450.


Motion by Ron to approve Lem’s offer to pick up the green up stuff for $450.  Second by Ken.  All in favor.  So approved.


Kate Briggs said State green up people want the green up bags out longer.  State wants us to keep a better inventory of what is picked up.  Kate will talk to Lem about that.  Kate is having a kick- off party at her house on April 26th for the most avid green up people.  She is going to the school for their assembly.  Kate will pick up bags.  Kate and Diane will work out the details of a cook out.  There are some sponsors for food.


Action:  Diane will put a notice in the paper that we will pick up bags and tires only.  Mattresses and appliances are on your own.


Appointment for Town Service Officer:


Motion by Tom to appoint Kathy Eastwood as Town Service Officer.  Second by Bob. All in favor.  The paperwork is being passed for three Selectboard signatures.






Old Business:


Bob talked with Reggie at Wind Mill and he said that the grader had plenty of life left into it and all it needed was tender loving care.  It would cost between $3,000-$5,000 to fix it.  It was not clear if this was just parts or parts and labor. 


Action:  Bob will call Reggie and ask him for definite repair costs and labor in writing by April 20th, our next Selectboard meeting.


Arlan stated he would need to get $90 an hour plus the operator.  Arlan would buy everything.  Approximately $107x100 hours a year. 


Virginia Wolf asked questions.  We have the grader.  Let’s get a firm price to get it fixed.  We are not putting ourselves into jeopardy with our own grader.  We should have a signed contract on a hired service with a stipulation of how many hours would be paid.  We should keep our equipment.


Cecile asked what a transmission would cost for a grader.   There was discussion about possible price ranges that it could be.


State auction coming up May 9th.  It’s an absolute auction, no reserve.  There is an on-line form to fill out.


A petition from Fairpoint Communication for replacement of poles and wires made its rounds.  By Vermont statute they need to submit a petition for permission to have right of way and needs to be signed by the Selectboard for Leicester/Whiting Road.


Appointment of Cemetery Sexton:


John Quelch resigned as Cemetery Sexton.  We need to appoint someone to replace John.

Motion by Tom to appoint Donna Pidgeon as Cemetery Sexton and for Donna Pidgeon to serve on the Cemetery Committee.  Second by Ken.  All in favor.  So approved.  Tom proposed they organize a Cemetery Committee meeting for Thursday night.  Tom will contact Donna Swinington and Audrey Scarborough.


Public Comment:  John Hughes commented that he would like to see everyone treat each other with mutual respect, and keep in mind that everyone is trying to do the best for the town.


Bob mentioned that he thinks Peter Fjeld will take a position on the Zoning Board or Planning Commission.  A letter of interest should go to the Chair of the Zoning Board (Gerry Flint) or Planning Commission (Donna Swinington).


The State of Vermont, Department of Education owes us money on the rebates.  The State should send the money directly to the Town and the Town should send the money to OVUHS.


Action:  Diane will call Brad James at the Department of Education.


Diane read memo to Town Clerks in regard to Homestead.  The Listers will go over with the State person tomorrow.


Donna Pidgeon asked questions of the Listers.  Donna asked if every outbuilding was changed.    Cecile explained that they went thru them building by building.  Cecile did not know about 8” foundations.  This year, both listers, have been present.  We agreed that one person cannot change an appraisal. 


Virginia asked why board is questioning these listers.  Board is trying to work on what’s happening now and going forward.


Donna asked Cecile if she knew her (Cecile’s) assessment had been reduced.  Cecile answered “yes”; along with all other garages. 


Virginia asked about the pending legal action.


Executive Session:


Motion by Tom, second by Ron to go into Executive Session at 8:29 p.m. to discuss pending legal action.  Passed unanimously.


 Motion by Tom, second by Ron, to come out of Executive Session at 8:55 p.m.  Passed unanimously.


Motion by Tom to authorize Chair to contact town counsel to proceed with his suggestions regarding legal matter.   Second by Ken.  Passed unanimously.


Motion by Bob to adjourn at 8:56 p.m.  Second by Tom.  Passed unanimously. 


Meeting adjourned 8:56 p.m.


Next regularly scheduled meeting Monday, April 20, 2009, 6:30 p.m.



Respectfully submitted,



Sandra L. Trombley

Selectboard Secretary