Board of Selectmen Meeting Minutes & Agendas

Nov 23, 2015

Approved Minutes Nov 23, 2015

5:00 PM

Present: Town Manager Andrew Dorsett, Chairman Milton Bratz, V. Chairman Schuyler Sweet, Selectman Edward Hennessey, Executive Secretary Ceil Stubbings

Others Present: Katherine Dorisky (Channel 2), Brian Patnoe (Transfer Station Manager), Karen Noyes (Finance Director), Dann, Rudy Gelsi, Darin Wipperman (The Courier), Chief Joe Mercieri (Littleton FD), Chief Paul Smith (Littleton PD), Brien Ward, Barry Lunderville (WLTN Radio), Ron Bolt (Energy Conservation Committee), George McNamara (Public Works Director)

Bratz called the meeting to order at 5:00 PM.

Pledge of Allegiance

Bratz opened the first public hearing as follows:
Public Hearing: Unanticipated Funds
1. The source of income is from funds awarded/donated by Anderson Family Dentistry PC in the amount of $7,500 to provide funds for the repair of a collapsed stone retaining wall and handrail.

2. The source of income from funds awarded/donated by Andersen Littleton Property LLC in the amount of $2,500 to provide funds for the repair of a collapsed stone retaining wall and handrail. Hennessey made the motion to accept the $7,500 donation from Anderson Family Dentistry PC and the $2,500 donation from the Anderson Littleton Property LLC. Sweet seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0.

3. The source of income is from funds awarded/donated by the State of New Hampshire Department of Public Safety to the Littleton Fire Department in the amount of $1,946.96. Hennessey made the motion to accept the $1,946.96 donation from the Department of Public Safety. Sweet seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0.

4. Anonymous Donation to the Littleton Police Department up to $4,000 for the purchase and delivery of an exterior storage shed. The shed will be used to store facility maintenance equipment. Hennessey made the motion to accept the anonymous donation of $4,000. Sweet seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0.

Bratz asked if there were any questions regarding these items. There being none Bratz closed the public hearing and opened the next public hearing as follows:

5. Sale of Town Property – Second Public Hearing
Washington Street Lot (Map 79, Lot 201
2015 Town Meeting approved Article 6 in accordance with RSA 41:14-4a to sell the above Town owned property without further Town Meeting action, to adjust the lot line and sell the property including development rights after consultation with the Town Planning Board and the Town Conservation Commission for $2,500.00. (Not impacting the school’s storage building).

Bratz explained this is the second public hearing on the sale of the Washington Street Lot as required. Bratz asked if there were any questions on the public hearing. No questions or comments were raised. Bratz closed the public hearing and moved opened the next public hearing.

6. Transfer Station Fee Adjustments – Effective January 2016
The board reviewed the recommended transfer station fee increases at the last board meeting. Bratz asked for any questions. Noyes said the fees should be reviewed every year or every other year. Bolt said that maybe after six months there could be an evaluation on this to see what the impact was. Sweet said the only problem with a six month review is it would be difficult because there was nothing to compare it to. Bratz then closed the public meeting. Sweet made the motion to approve the rate increases. Hennessey seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0.

Brien Ward – Town Sidewalks
Brien Ward said wanted to talk about the sidewalks because this is the budget season. We have nineteen miles of sidewalks. We have spent a lot of money on improving our sidewalks but the problem that we have is that the decision was made to go with granite curb. Where the problem develops is that there is a separation which causes weeds grow up between the curb and the sidewalk. Ward said he has discussed this with George McNamara. Ward went on to say that this is just a recommendation at this time. He is asking the board to put in a warrant in to maintain the sidewalks. Bratz asked McNamara if he had any comments on this. McNamara said the problem with this is there is the nineteen miles of sidewalk. We do not have the money or the resources to do this. It would have to be contracted out. There is no cheap fix for this and it is very expensive. Bratz asked how much of the sidewalk has granite curb. Ward said most all of it is granite curb. Bratz thanked Ward for his input and said the board would take it under advisement.

Chief Paul Smith (Littleton PD) – 2016 Budget
Bratz said the budget committee has been reviewing all of the budgets in Town. They have asked the board to provide feedback on the police department budget. Smith said the proposed budget consists of two entry level positions with the approximate cost for those positions for none months. His numbers were higher than Karen Noyes numbers and includes benefits, uniforms and everything else. The total would be $170,000. We also placed an additional $30,000 for part time officers. This is to pay for one of our senior officers who is retiring. We would like to retain that officer on a part time basis. We also would like to replace our Expedition Cruiser. Recently they were put on as a warrant article. The department is looking to deploy body cameras at a cost of $12,000. We assigned someone as a detective because of the drug problems. Smith said the increase in the budget would be a little over thirty cents. Smith said a motion was made to render the selectmen to make an opinion on the PD Budget at the last budget committee meeting. Bratz said the impact on the budget won’t be known until we have the full budget in front of us. Hennessey asked if the budget committee is just looking for comments. Bolt said they want to know if you support this budget because of the level of the increase. Bolt said there was no outright rejection or endorsement on this budget and that this is the only budget they asked for an opinion on. Sweet said if they get three comments that would give them direction. Hennessey said he thinks they should show support on the new officers and he agrees this should belong in the budget itself but he would support only one additional officer. Sweet said he does not doubt a thing the chief said. He is totally in support of his request. The problem is the percent if increase. He would like the budget committee to see other places to find the money. Bratz said they currently have a $1.13 increase on the new tax bill and more added next year. Hennessey said they should not vote yet until we see the full budget. Rudy Gelsi asked if the three selectmen are in support of the PD budget. Bratz said yes. Rudy Gelsi told the chief the budget he presented the last time was $225,000 there is a difference in the numbers. Smith said his numbers were high and the numbers that Noyes came up with did not include the uniforms or the workers comp calculation.

Town Manager’s Report:
Reminder - 2016 Petitioned Warrant Articles Procedure & Deadline
Dorsett reminded the public of the procedure and deadline for submitting petitioned warrant articles.
The deadline is January 12, 2015 but petitioned warrant articles should be submitted well before the deadline.

Update on Town Manager’s Past Week Events
I met with the Opera House Commission on Wednesday to explore how best to move forward with managing the facility, and tenant recruitment and retention. Our current MOU is requiring the ongoing maintenance and building management to be conducted by our tenant the Chamber of Commerce. An earlier discussion with the Chamber alluded that there may be some overlap of duties between the Opera House Commission and the Chamber. We will be developing a recommended path forward to better manage and utilize this facility. Exploring the Chamber’s role as a tenant will be needed. You’ll receive an update on this project in the future.

Waste Water Treatment Plant – Solids Contract
We are currently operating under a contract that was initially signed in 2000 with an annual automatic renewal. After discussing this with Utility Partners, our engineer and checking with other communities we are putting out an RFP for the solids contract. We hope to realize some savings through this process.

River District
The River District Committee will be seeking a warrant article for a bond for approximately $900,000 to be used for leverage as matching funds for grant projects in the District. In discussions with North Country Council the Committee discovered that the Town could benefit from additional representation on that Council. They indicate that there is a vacancy which could be filled by the BOS. Effort is being made to look at candidates who would well represent the community and effectively add to their conversations while advocating for the community and its projects.

Old Business: None

New Business:
SEA Union Contract Agreement: Bratz said they are going to take this item to a nonpublic session.

Other Business: Approve the following minutes:
November 16, 2015
Bratz wanted the minutes amended to show that his statement regarding the over capacity of the Opera House to state it was the balcony area that was over capacity. Hennessey moved to approve the minutes as amended. Sweet seconded the motion. Motion passed 3-0.

Citizen Concerns/Comments:
Ward said the 23rd Economic Development Meeting. The meeting will be televised on Channel 2 this weekend. It was a very successful meeting and Chad Stearns did a fantastic job of putting it together. The commissioners of the DOT came to the meeting. They addressed the amount of money that had been expended in Littleton over the last couple of years. Thirty Seven Million Dollars has been expended by the DOT on various projects. Ward feels it would be appropriate the selectmen and the Town Manager write a letter of Thank You to the DOT. Ward said that is the largest amount expended in the history of our area. It was history breaking. He also did a presentation at the meeting called “Littleton a Billion Dollar Community.” Ward said Littleton has the potential by 2020 our tax base could grow by two million dollars.

Barry Lunderville asked about the status of the PILOT Payment agreement with the hospital. Bratz said they are in the final stages of developing the final language of the agreement. Currently there is a verbal agreement. Rudy Gelsi said it was recommended to the board at the last meeting about the partnership with the industrial park and river district. Bratz said they developed a partnership between the Littleton Economic Development Commission and the River District. Bratz said it was nothing the board had to approve. Gelsi asked why then was it presented to the board. Sweet said it was just informative. Hennessey said they asked the board to write a letter to the owner of the Brooks complex to encourage them to work with us to sell it.

Sweet made the motion to go into a nonpublic session per the following RSA’s:
RSA 91-A:3, II (a) The dismissal, promotion, or compensation of any public employee or the disciplining of such employee, or the investigation of any charges against him or her, unless the employee affected (1) has a right to a public meeting, and (2) requests that the meeting be open, in which case the request shall be granted.

Hennessey seconded the motion. The board entered the nonpublic session at 6:15 PM after a short break to allow the public to leave. The board came out of the nonpublic meeting after a unanimous roll call vote at 6:40 PM. The minutes were sealed. Sweet made the motion to adjourn. Hennessey seconded the motion. The meeting adjourned at 6:41 PM.