2011 Meeting Minutes and Agendas
- Work Session Minutes Dec 20, 2011
- Approved Minutes Dec 12, 2011
- Approved Minutes Nov 28, 2011
- Approved Meeting Minutes Nov 14, 2011
- Approved Minutes Nov 2, 2011
- Approved Minutes Oct 24, 2011
- Work Session Minutes Oct 17, 2011
- Draft Minutes Oct 11, 2011
- Work Session Minutes Oct 11, 2011
- Work Session Minutes Oct 4, 2011
- Approved Minutes Sep 26, 2011
- Approved Minutes Sep 12, 2011
- Approved Minutes Aug 22, 2011
- Approved Minutes Aug 15, 2011
- Approved Minutes Jul 27, 2011
- Approved Minutes Jul 25, 2011
- Approved Minutes Jun 27, 2011
- Approved Minutes Jun 13, 2011
- Approved Minutes Special Nonpublic Session Jun 7, 2011
- Approved Minutes May 23, 2011
- Approved Minutes May 13, 2011
- Approved Minutes May 9, 2011
- Approved Minutes Apr 25, 2011
- Approved Minutes Apr 11, 2011
- Approved Minutes Apr 6, 2011
- Approved Minutes Mar 16, 2011
- Approved Special Meeting Minutes Mar 14, 2011
- Approved Minutes of Press Release Mar 9, 2011
- Approved Not Sealed Nonpublic Minutes Mar 9, 2011
- Approved Minutes Mar 2, 2011
- CDBG Public Hearing Minutes Mar 2, 2011
- Approved Minutes Feb 24, 2011
- Approved Minutes Feb 16, 2011
- Approved Minutes Feb 14, 2011
- Approved Minutes Feb 10, 2011
- Approved Minutes Feb 8, 2011
- Board of Assessors Minutes Feb 4, 2011
- Special Meeting Approved Minutes Feb 3, 2011
- Approved Minutes Feb 3, 2011
- Approved Minutes Jan 28, 2011
- Approved Meeting Minutes Jan 26, 2011
- Board of Assessors Minutes Jan 18, 2011
- Bond & Budget Hearing Minutes Jan 13, 2011
- Board of Assessors Minutes Jan 5, 2011
- Approved Minutes Jan 5, 2011
Board of Selectmen
Approved Minutes Feb 10, 2011
TOWN OF LITTLETON
BOARD OF SELECTMEN’S MEETING
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 10, 2011
TOWN OFFICE CONFERENCE ROOM
Present: Town Manager Chuck Connell, Chairman Ron Bolt, Selectman Marghie Seymour, Executive Secretary Ceil Stubbings.
Others Present: Eddy Moore, Mary Edick, Chief Paul Smith, Chief Joe Mercieri, George Chartier, Amy Hatfield, Joanna Ray, Joe Wiggett, Jackie King, Judy White, Jim Daly, Mary Daly, Bill Latulip
Bolt called the meeting to order at 9:00 AM in the Town office Conference Room. The primary purpose of the meeting is to discuss the impact of the $745,000 cut to the budget. If the new Article 16 passes they would have to come up with the $745,000 anyway they can. Bolt said there is tradition to try to honor the intent of the amendment but they are under no obligation to do that. The only thing that has changed on the Article is the dollar amount. Anything else that was said after that will not appear on the ballot. The comments made by Mr. Ward are somewhat gratuitous. Bolt wanted to make sure the Board understood the intent of the amendment. He then read the amendment provided by Mr. Ward. Bolt said it was important for the Board to inform the public of what the impacts would be. Seymour said the impact of the cuts would be what they make of them. Bolt said that in his opinion Mr. Ward has done us a favor by making this such a large number and going after public safety first rather than last and eliminating our most senior personnel.
Seymour said that contractually they could not eliminate their most senior personnel. Seymour said that the Board did not need to spend a lot of time on reviewing Ward’s amendments and pointing out the mistakes he made. What they need to do is figure out how are they going to cut $745,000 if this passes. We need to do what we think is right we are the ones who have to make the decision.
Mary Daly said a small portion of Littleton’s population attended the meeting. Mary agrees with Mr. Bolt that the rest of the public be informed of the verbiage behind the amended warrant article and that it be made clear exactly what Mr. Ward is intending to do, which is the same old let’s gut the public safety departments. Seymour said most of the people already know what Ward said. Jim Daly said that one of the things about highlighting what Ward said increases the chance the public will turn the thing down. Jeff Whitcomb said that running through all of the cuts that Mr. Ward wants to make is not going to do any good. Whitcomb said they have a short amount of time to get on the TV and in the papers and explain what Ward’s cuts were going to do. Whitcomb said they should also avoid using scare tactics. Jerry Sorlucco said that he resents the fact that his rights were taken away during the Deliberative Session. Mr. Ward should not have been able to do what he did and he does not believe it was legal. Sorlucco said it was not constitutional. Connell told him it was legal within the New Hampshire Constitution. Seymour said they should show Ward’s recommendation and the reality of the situation. She gave an example of getting rid of the Town Manager per Ward’s recommendation that states the Town would save $80,000. The reality the Town Manager has a severance package and would in fact end up costing the Town if he were to leave.
Joe Mercieri said he would like to have the information that Seymour was talking about to look at his department to see where further cuts could be made. There is a possibility that the amendment could pass. He does not want to be here on March 9th trying to guess what he is going to do now.
Connell said they have to support the Default Budget because if the Amended Budget passes it will decimate the Town. If we have to lay one person off we have an obligation to notify them and the earliest affective date is April 1, 2011. Connell provided a report showing Ward’s numbers and how they were flawed. He then explained why Ward’s order of layoffs would not work because of the union contract obligations. Connell said he would have to conclude more people would have to be laid off then what the Ward amendment called for. Connell then provided a breakdown of the possible layoffs. Seymour said the problem is the people that are working in the current positions are leaving work that would still have to be done. Blot clarified that they could not do the cuts in the order prescribed by Mr. Ward. They would have to be done bottom up and in keeping in the spirit of the amendment they should be looking at labor.
Bolt wanted to discuss labor laws because the last thing they wanted to do was end up in a lawsuit. Bolt asked Connell to explain exactly what the laws require the Town to do. Do they have to have a police department or a fire department? He wanted to know what is the minimum level of service that they have to provide to the Town. Paul Smith said that he did not know of any RSA the requires a police department, however any town in the State of New Hampshire with a population of over three thousand the State Police do not have jurisdiction. George Chartier said there is an RSA that states property owned by a Town there is an obligation to maintained by that Town. The fire and police Chief’s have both spoken to mutual aid agencies and were told the mutual aid entities could not cover the Town of Littleton. They cannot accept the transfer of costs and responsibilities.
Jackie King said that if the fire department were cut insurance costs in the community would go up. Bolt then asked if they were obligated to have a Transfer Station. Jackie King said that if any of her people were cut a lot of services would have to be cut. Connell said the Town is required by law to provide for solid waste disposal. Seymour said that if this amendment passes and they have to cut they are not going to have any choice except to make some labor cuts. But they should ask the department heads to give the board recommendations in any other ways to do this. They don’t have to just cut labor. We need to be as responsible as we can and not go to the extreme just to prove how wrong they are. Joe Wiggett asked if the position of the board is to cut labor costs or layoff people. Wiggett said that a lot of people could go on shorter hours instead of being laid off. Bolt said the other thing mentioned was the benefits. Nothing can be done about the benefits now but it could be on the list the next time they negotiate the contracts. Karen Noyes pointed out that the health insurance that would have to be paid for each person laid off would add to the number of layoffs.
Connell pointed out that according to the Ward amendment they can’t go to the Park’s & Recreation or the Library. We can’t go to the enterprise or debt service. Seymour said she knew they were going to have to cut people but if they came up with the $745,000 without layoffs then there was something definitely wrong with their budget. Jerry Sorlucco said they would all like to see the Article fail. But if you look at the ballot it will be all over the papers that if you vote for the default budget it will increase the taxes. Seymour said that she would like to make sure if we defeat the amendment and we end up with the default budget we would still go with the budget that they recommended so the taxes would not go up. Seymour made a pledge that they would operate under the budget they recommended. Mary Edick said they should go to all of the departments like the library, the parks and the cemetery for cuts.
Bolt asked Connell about the Parks & Recreation Department. Bolt asked how they ended up with a recreation director a few years ago. Joe Wiggett said the position was voted on at Town Meeting. Bolt asked how to get rid of the position. Connell said he was the only person who could hire and fire in Town. But he could not hire or fire in the library or the parks department. Those hiring and firing responsibilities belong to the park commissioners and the library director. Connell said it could not be done because they are a separate political entity. Seymour asked if they wanted to do something the only thing they could do is to cut their money. Connell told the Board they could reduce the amount of money going to the parks and the library. Bolt said his thought was to take the salary of the recreation director and all the summer help, all the seasonal work and part timers and add that up and tell them that’s what we are not going to give them. Bolt said that all he was saying is that nothing is off the table as far as he is concerned. Connell told Bolt that if he cut the parks & recreation department he would be waking up a giant. Seymour said that instead of focusing on Ward’s amendment they need a list of what cuts would make the most sense. Connell said that in working with the department heads he could provide the initial list. Connell said the initial list would not get them to the $745,000. Seymour asked Connell why it would not make it there if that is what they are telling him to do. Seymour said she wants a list that gets them to the $745,000. Joe Mercieri asked once again if the Board was going to allow the department heads to look at other alternatives. Connell said they needed to go the hard way first and then see how many of the positions they could save. Bolt and Seymour agreed with Connell’s approach. Bolt said they would consider alternatives. Seymour said she was not going to be in favor of cutting people until they get to the $745,000. Jim Daly said the list should be made available to the public. Karen Noyes said that if they focus on labor alone they are looking at between sixteen and seventeen people. Mary Edick had two things she would ask the Board to cut. The first was the Chamber of Commerce for $15,000 and the Mount Washington Regional Airport. Bolt said the airport was an obligation. Bolt then read a statement on the position of the board on the amendment to Article 16. Seymour made the motion to adjourn. Bolt seconded the motion. Motion passed 2-0. The meeting adjourned at 10:45 AM.
Littleton has functioned as a Board of Selectmen/Town Manager form of government since 1976.
The Littleton Board of Selectmen meets the 2nd Monday and the 4th Monday of each month at 5:00 PM at the Littleton Community House - Heald Room.
If you would like to be put on the agenda for an upcoming Selectmen's meeting, please contact Ceil Stubbings. Please be prepared with all information needed for the Selectmen to make a decision no later than the Friday before the Selectmen's meeting
G. Michael Gilman, Chairman
Milton T. Bratz, Vice Chairman
Marghie M. Seymour, Selectman
Selectmen's Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Executive Secretary for the Board of Selectmen
125 Main Street
Littleton, NH 03561
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