Town of Hinesburg
February 27, 2012
Attending the meeting: Jon Trefry, Mike Bissonette, Ken Brown, Andrea Morgante, Joe Colangelo and attached list.
Meeting called to order at 7:00 p.m.
Jon presented Ken Brown with a plaque in recognition of his service to the Town as a Selectboard member for 4 years.
Public Hearing – Article 2 of 2012 Town Meeting Warning
Jon opened the Public Hearing and read the article as it will be voted.
ARTICLE 2: Shall general obligation bonds of the Town of Hinesburg in amount not to exceed Two Hundred and Seventy-Five Thousand Dollars ($275,000), subject to reduction from available state and federal construction grants-in-aid and other financial assistance, be issued for the purpose of making certain improvements, vis: the repair and reconstruction of the Mountain View Mobile Home Park Sewage Disposal System, such improvements estimated to cost Two Hundred and Seventy-Five Thousand Dollars ($275,000)?
He explained this is a pass thru bond and the need for the bond to complete the sewage disposal system project at Mtn View.
Mountain View Mobile Home Park is located on Buck Hill Rd East and provides 52 units of affordable housing. The non-profit Housing Foundation Inc (HFI) owns Mountain View and its mission is to create, preserve and protect affordable housing in Vermont for low and moderate-income families, the elderly and persons with disabilities. Recent and ongoing problems with septic systems in Mountain View prompted HFI to proceed with the reconstruction of the sewage disposal system. The selected alternative solution is an environmentally sound, on-site community mound system.
This construction is divided in two phases.
Phase #1 was successfully completed in early November 2011 at a cost of approximately $350,000. In addition to the majority of design and permitting, the mound itself was constructed and 13 homes in failure were connected to the new system. The majority of funding for this phase was provided through a State of Vermont low interest (2%) Revolving Loan of $275,000; this funding was only made possible due to a successful bond vote from the Town of Hinesburg.
Phase #2 will consist of construction supervision by the project engineer, final permitting, the connection of the remaining 39 homes, and the associated restoration of landscaping and roadways. Similar funding is sought for Phase #2; a State of Vermont low interest (2%) Revolving Loan of $275,000.
A municipality is the only entity that may apply for these funds. At HFI’s request, the Hinesburg Selectboard has agreed to warn a bond vote for this project understanding that if successful the funds would pass through the Town to HFI. HFI would complete the construction project and compile all the necessary documents for submittal to the State. Like the previous bond vote for this project, if this bond vote is successful, it will not add to Hinesburg’s property tax or wastewater user costs as HFI will be responsible for repayment.
In the event that Mountain View is unable to meet its obligations, the ultimate security for payment is the Town’s taxing authority and the underlying responsibility to pay the bondholder lies with the Town. Under the MOU and under general statute, the Town has a lien for sewer service charges on all Mountain View property and in a bankruptcy situation the Town’s lien for taxes and sewage disposal charges is afforded a preference no enjoyed by other creditors.
Jon closed the Public Hearing
Public Hearing – Article 3 of 2012 Town Meeting Warning.
Jon opened the Public Hearing.
The Town of Hinesburg will include an article to be voted on Town Meeting Day to fund a $2,900,000 Public Safety Facility and Community Park on Town owned land in the center of Hinesburg Village. The project proposes to expand the current Fire Station, co-locate the Police Department under the same roof, build a large community room roughly the size of the Main Hall in the Town Offices, and complete necessary improvements for a Town park, bus stop and park and ride facility on the space commonly referred to as Lot 1.
ARTICLE 3: Shall general obligation bonds of the Town of Hinesburg in amount not to exceed Two Million Nine-Hundred Thousand Dollars ($2,900,000), subject to reduction from available state and federal constructions grants-in-aid and other financial assistance, be issued for the purpose of a proposed public safety facility and community park.
Joe Colangelo gave a brief presentation of the project as proposed.
It was noted that included in cost is dismantling the current building that houses the Police Department and work on the adjoining green space park.
Gay Regan asked what the sources are for the impact fees that will be used to partially offset this cost.
Jon said the fees are assessed on square footage of new construction in Town.
Phil Pouch asked how much new building is needed to generate the $30,000 example used.
Rocky said it is hard to give an amount, anytime a building permit is issued it generates the impact fee.
Andrea noted there is a 6 year window. The fees must be used within 6 years or go back to the developer and can only be used for capital needs resulting from additional development in Town not operating costs.
It was asked if operating costs for this new facility have been calculated and Joe said they have not.
Andrea said the architect was asked to design for energy efficiency.
Asked was if during the design stage it was looked at to meet the needs of the departments with a building that was not of such a large size.
Frank Koss said the Police Department used a cut back model of what Williston built.
Gay Regan asked about the report looking at staffing of the Police Department and space needs.
Joe said the complete report is available on the Town web site and referred to the report stating the department should stay at current staffing levels.
Will Patten asked what the Selectboard sees as other bonding needs for the near future for the Town.
Jon listed the following; Highway garage relocation – this however cannot be done before 2014 as the site is shared with CSWD and in 2014 CSWD will start actively looking into a new town. New ladder truck in the future for the Fire Department, and the recreation field project.
Ken Brown asked if the multi-purpose community room is a critical need of the Fire and Police Departments. Frank said it is not critical but would be used and is a good idea to have the space.
Carl Bohlen asked if the building is designed to accommodate expansion if in 20 years more space is needed.
Frank said the design would allow for expansion.
Jon closed the Public Hearing.
The Police and Fire Departments will host an open house on March 3 from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. so the community can visit the current physical locations for both departments. This will be a great opportunity for local residents to see how these departments operate and get a tour from the Chiefs.
Discussion – Article 4 of 2012 Town Meeting Warning
ARTICLE 4: Shall the Town of Hinesburg take advantage of the provisions of Chapter 37 of Title 24 of the Vermont Statutes Annotated and authorize the Selectboard to employ a Town Manager?
Jon noted if the article to employ a Town Manger is approved the Selectboard would not go out to look to hire someone. The current Town Administrator would take on the Town Manager position. Jon added that the current Town Administrator position is structured very similar to a Town Manager position.
Mike B is not in favor of the change and said he believes the Selectboard can tailor the Town Administrator position to what the Selectboard wants it to be and not be governed by the State.
Will Patten said the Selectboard can delegate responsibility to the Town Administrator to deal with personnel issues and such but the responsibility still lies with the Selectboard.
Presentation of Phase 2 Bissonette Field Project
This meeting represents the completion of the inquiry of the Bissonette Recreation Field project. This started last summer when Wayne Bissonette offered to gift a portion of the land he owns on the corner of Shelburne Falls Road and Route 116 to the Town for the purpose of developing a recreation field. The terms are such that Wayne would gift the land and the Town would be responsible for all costs associated with the transfer, permitting, and developing of said land.
Phase 1 included the development of initial concept drawings of the Recreation Facility along with a review of all necessary permits for the project to determine if there were any showstoppers. The total estimated cost of permitting, including an Act 250 Amendment to the Cairns Act 250 Permit came to $34,000. Based on that estimate and the fact that there were no ‘showstoppers’ discovered the Selectboard went ahead and allocated money for L&D to complete Phase 2 and budgeted the amount necessary in the proposed FY2013 Hinesburg Town Budget – to be voted on at Town Meeting – for the Town to legally acquire the property from Mr. Bissonette and to acquire the permits necessary to make development of recreation fields possible.
The Phase 2 Report details the costs associated with the physical development of fields on the property. The report shows the development of the facility divided into two (2) phases. Phase 1 includes the construction of the access road from Shelburne Falls Road, a parking lot, earthwork for both soccer fields, and final finishing for one of the fields. The total estimate for the construction of Phase 1 is $362,000. Phase 2 – the completion of the second soccer field and the baseball field – brings the total estimated cost of the project to $631,000. The cost of Phase 1 could be reduced if the Town used its own gravel to construct the access road. Doug Henson’s report (pg 7) gives a cost breakdown of each facet of the project.
The funding for Phase 2 has not been seriously considered up to this point; clearly that is an important next discussion. The first phase of Phase 2 – estimated at $362,000 – could be funded via private fundraising, Eddy Trust money, grant monies, and/or public financing.
Ken moved the Selectboard vote in favor of supporting continuing the exploration into the Bissonette Field Project due to the fact that it is a feasible project; and to support a community-wide process of input, feedback, and discussion, along with a complete investigation of practical funding sources for the project. Second by Andrea and approved with Mike B abstaining.
Review Speed Enforcement on Shelburne Falls Road
The accident on January 27 prompted a resident, at the last Selectboard meeting, to inquire into the legal speed limit and the speed enforcement practices of the Hinesburg Community Police Department along the Hinesburg portion of Shelburne Falls Road.
Chief Koss supplied the following information to the Board regarding speed violations. Shelburne Falls Road citations are approximately 5.3% of all citations issued since 2006; and Shelburne Falls Road accounts for approximately 10.6% of total accidents during that same timeframe. During the same time, Rte 116 citations have accounted for about 29.4% of all citations and roughly 55.5% of all accidents.
The Board and Chief Koss agreed to increase the police presence on Shelburne Falls Road.
The Town has been offered some pro-bono engineering work in the hopes of making the road safer from a design standpoint and the Board will review the suggestions when received.
Consider new Selectboard Policy for Appointments to Commissions, Boards, and Committees
This draft Policy for Appointments attempts to provide some consistency in expectations and methodology to the timing and requirements for the Town to abide by when advertising and making appointments to the various Commissions, Boards, and Committees (CBC) the Town sponsors.
The policy was sent to all Hinesburg Commission, Boards, and Committees for critique and feedback. Responses to date are included with the Selectboard packet and most of them are extremely relevant for Selectboard consideration.
Joe Colangelo has noted some of his thoughts from the feedback on the policy received to date:
1. Delete iv, a, iii – I agree with Jean Isham that this probably unnecessary and could be addressed under iv, a, ii (other misconduct). If the board does want to keep this specific clause then we would have to do full background checks and ask that question on the application. It’s either all or nothing.I’m not sure if a felony conviction should result in the automatic loss of the ability to take part in your hometown’s local government. Martha Stewart wouldn’t be able to be on the Hinesburg Garden Committee, after all.
2. Keep iii, g – Please anything to reduce the administrative burden. If there is a good candidate that has already applied for the position, the Selectboard should be able to appoint that person without a new search. The key word here is MAY. Plus this ads incentive to apply to a position since it increases your chance of being appointed mid-year if not appointed on Oct 31 (or whenever that date is established to be).
3. Keep iv, a, i. – With modern technology and the Town’s new phone system it is not too hard to be part of a meeting even if you are not in Hinesburg. Missing more than 20% of all meetings does not call for an automatic removal but could be one reason among others that a member is removed from a CBC.
4. Keep iv.b and Delete iv.c. – Just my opinion. But I do not have strong feelings either way
5. Keep v, a. – Let’s not split hairs.
6. Tweak v, b. – I will ask Renae when the ideal time would be for all Town Report materials to be to her. Very early January would be the latest.
7. Keep i.,c – This Selectboard has stated time and time again that residency would not be a requirement and, quite frankly, that issue is not what this policy aims to address right now. Its purpose is to standardize the process. A future Selectboard may differ and this policy will likely not be adopted until after the election cycle brings in at least one (1) new Selectboard member; so potentially that issue will be back on the table in March.
8. Tweak ii.a.ii – Chairpersons should be evaluated by the rest of the CBC members.
9. Keep, or Tweak ii, a. - The philosophy of (simple) majority consent for reappointment is to encourage volunteerism and to enable members in good standing, who wish to continue service on a volunteer CBC, be able to without worrying about the changing make-up of the Selectboard. A CBC member could potentially come up for reappointment after a 3 or 4-year stint on a CBC and face an entirely new Selectboard for reappointment. Requiring only a simple majority would protect a CBC member in good standing from political shifts that could impact reappointment. On the other hand, there is the issue of ‘lifetime’ appointments. Requiring a unanimous vote from the Selectboard for reappointment could reduce that issue and allow others to have a chance to serve. This section is the crux of the policy and the Selectboard needs to be clear as to what it hopes to accomplish here.
10. Keep ii, b – October 31 is a great date for all appointments and reappointments to be made. December is a horrible time for people to be applying for these positions with holiday season being in full swing. September and October are also better times to deal with this task internally as budget season is not yet in full swing.
Joe shared his thoughts from the feedback on the application received to date:
1. The Top Priority Goals and Recommendations are in the Town Plan; not the Town Report. That was my typo and obviously needs to be fixed.
2. I’m not sure if the duration of residency to date is important or not but it may be worth knowing upfront since the Selectboard typically asks that question during the interview.
3. The reason behind asking applicants to respond to the top priorities and goals is mainly to get them thinking about the future of Hinesburg and having them tie that back to their reasons for service on a CBC. It seems to me to be a worthwhile exercise.
4. A cover letter and/or resume are a sufficient way for applicants to introduce themselves to the Board. Clearly more can and will come up during an interview session.
The Selectboard briefly discussed ii Appointments – discussion was concerning possibly changing majority consent to unanimous consent.
Andrea spoke in regards to encouraging volunteerism and maintaining continuity of a committee by re-appointing interested members.
It was agreed to add to the policy that if a CBC member moves out of Hinesburg they need to advise the Selectboard of their move.
Planning Commission Appointments
The new CBC policy is clearly necessary and will help the Town – especially the Town Administrator – keep a more organized and transparent approach to appointments and reappointments. Until that time, here we are with reappointment action for Planning Commission members.
Planning Commission Members
Chairperson: Jean Isham
Vice-Chairperson: Joseph Iadanza
Meetings Held: 2nd and 4th Wednesday of each month
Location: Location: Ground level conference room, Town Hall
Member Name - Term Ends
Tom Ayer - 01/01/14
Kyle Bostwick - 01/01/12
Timothy Clancy - 01/01/12
Carrie Fenn - 01/01/13
Joseph Iadanza - 01/01/12
Jean Isham - 01/01/14
Bob Linck - 01/01/13
Ray Mainer - 01/01/13
Johanna White - 01/01/14
Commission members serve 4-year terms
Kyle Bostwick, Timothy Clancy and Joe Iadanza have terms that expired on January 1, 2012.
All three have indicated via email their intent to continue their service. Furthermore, both have been encouraged to continue by the Chair – Jean Isham – and staff – Alex W. Joe looked through past emails back to December to double check – that no others have submitted Letters of Interest.
Ken moved the Board vote to reappoint Timothy Clancy, Joe Iadanza, and Kyle Bostwick to a four (4) year term on the Planning Commission with the term ending October 31, 2015. Second by Mike and approved.
Act 250 Municipal Impact Questionnaire
Alex’s memorandum sums up this agenda item nicely. There do not seem to be any issues that would pose an unreasonable burden to existing municipal services; all department heads have indicated this much. Alex will be at the meeting if there are any further questions or issues Selectboard members would like to discuss on this topic.
Ken moved the Board vote to authorize the Town Administrator to complete and sign the form on behalf of the Town. Second by Mike B and approved.
Town Administrator’s Report
1. Economic Development Committee Work – Working with our UVM class, a business survey went out for the purpose of data collection. That survey is attached. The class is now focusing their attention on researching economic development commissions around the country to see how those committees are organized and try and determine what might be best for Hinesburg. They are also doing more work on the mechanism of the revolving loan fund. Between the business directory and data from the survey, looking at the best organization for the economic development commission, and finishing work on the revolving loan fund, the UVM class plans to present their work to Hinesburg in late April.
2. Recreation Path Project Update – Rocky is working with the State to finalize all documents and get them out to bid in March.
3. Town Value, Vision, and Mission Statements – As a first step to working on this project, Joe convened a small group for a brainstorming and teambuilding workshop. Jim Ross, Hinesburg resident and former executive in the Pataki administration in the State of New York will be facilitating and leading the conversation. This early group work is neither binding nor will it be complete. It’s a first step to what Joe sees as an important process for any organization to undertake.
4. Trails Committee – Letter for the Selectboard members to stop in to Town Hall and sign for Bart Frisbee; also, the Trails Committee has submitted a grant application for $500 through Vermont’s Recreation Trails Program. Joe attached that grant application to the online version of the Selectboard Packet.
5. Vermont Integrated Architecture Invoice – Last meeting the Selectboard approved $3000 from police and fire impact fees for VIA’s initial work to get plans and renderings ready for the Public Information Meeting and Public Hearing for the Public Safety Facility and Community Park project. Their invoice was for $4080. They have been paid the first $3,000 and ask the Selectboard to approve the remaining $1,080. Their work is complete until further notice. Mike B moved the Board vote to approve the $1,080 reimbursement to VT Integrated Architecture for work done to present the project. Motion approved with Ken abstaining.
6. VLCT’s Selectboard Institute – Joe recommends Board members take advantage of one of these. It would be great if the new Board member(s) – who start in March – would sign up too.
7. Commuter Bus Service Public Hearing – Scheduled for March 1 at 7 p.m. in the Town Hall. Up to date route and schedule information is available on the CCTA website but the public will have the opportunity to have input and impact the schedules still. Bus depots for ACTR in Hinesburg are zeroing in on Waitsfield Telecom for northbound and the United Church for Hinesburg. Using the park and ride behind Town Hall does not appear to be a workable option for ACTR because of the time lost turning on and off of Charlotte Road. I am not sure CCTA’s plan at this moment.
8. Shelburne Falls Road Culvert – With the assistance of consultant engineer Mike Weiselthe Shelburne Falls Road Culvert project has been put out to bid. Bids will be due on March 29 and we will plan to award at the April 2 Selectboard meeting. It should be noted that the plan includes closing SRF while the work is being complete. This will be roughly two (2) days.
Andrea moved the Board convene as Liquor Control Board, second by Ken and approved.
Ken moved the Board vote to approve the Class I licenses to Travia’s / Good Time Café / and Papa Nick’s. Second by Andrea and approved.
Andrea moved the Board vote to approve the Class II licenses to Lantman’s / Kinney Drugs / Jolley / Hinesburg General Store / Global Grapes / and Jiffy Mart. Second by Ken and approved.
Ken moved the Board re-convene as Selectboard, second by Andrea and approved.
Ken moved the Board vote to approve the warrants including payroll warrants, second by Andrea and approved.
Jon reported that Mike Anthony informed him the Highway Dept is making the brine needed for Town.
Andrea moved the Board vote to adjourn at 10:20 p.m. second by Ken and approved.
Valerie Spadaccini, secretary