Minutes of the
TOWN OF BROOKFIELD
Town Clerk’s Office
July 26, 2021
THOSE PRESENT: John Benson, Chair; Jeff Kimmel, Dennis LaRocque, Brenda Flint, Kathryn Threlkeld, Board Members; Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman; Mike Lints, Auditor; Kasey Peterson, Administrative Assistant (by teleconferencing); Betty Lord, Secretary
A. CALL TO ORDER: The Chair, John Benson called the meeting to order at 6:30 pm.
B. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA: None
C. ORGANIZATIONAL MEETING: Mr. Benson explained to the new Board Members, Mrs. Flint and Mrs. Threlkeld, the way the Board is organized and the various roles that are filled by the members. He also explained the members’ working relationship with the Administrative Assistant to the Board, Mrs. Peterson.
The roles of the Board members were then assigned by vote:
• Mr. Kimmel made a motion to appoint Mr. John Benson as Chair of the Board. Mr. LaRocque seconded and the motion was unanimously approved: 5-0-0.
• Mr. Benson made a motion to appoint Mr. LaRocque as the Road Commissioner, working with the Highway Department. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which was unanimously approved.: 5-0-0.
• Mr. Benson made a motion to appoint Mr. Kimmel as the member to oversee miscellaneous issues (including legal issues) that are not covered by the other appointments. Mr. LaRocque seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 5-0-0.
• Mr. Kimmel made a motion to appoint Mrs. Flint as Financial Advisor to the Board. Mr. LaRocque seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 5-0-0.
• Mr. Benson made a motion to appoint Mrs. Threlkeld as Town representative to the Mountain Alliance Solid Waste District and TRORC Transportation Advisory Committee. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 5-0-0.
D. PUBLIC COMMENTS: None
E. HIGHWAY REPORT:
a. Storm Damage Report: Mr. Higgins reported that the recent storm had done considerable damage, with the worst of it being done on Eagle Peak Road. Other roads affected were Chelsea Road, Halfway Brook Road, Kibbee Road and West Street. Mr. Higgins has met with a representative from VTrans who stated they would have grant funding available to cover 90% of the road repair costs. Mr. Higgins also stated that a new pump was needed for clearing some of the plugged culverts. Mr. LaRocque made a motion to authorize Mr. Higgins to purchase a new pump not to exceed a cost of $1,000. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which carried unanimously: 5-0-0.
Mr. Higgins also reported that the equipment owned by the Town was insufficient to clear out some of the roads and ditches in Brookfield. The Board asked Mr. Higgins to get some pricing for hiring an outside party to do the work.
Mr Higgins also reported that 2,142 yards of sand had recently been purchased.
Mr. LaRocque reported that an account was opened with the NAPA store in Northfield and no limit had been set on purchases. Mr. Higgins stated that a representative from VTrans had visited the Bear Hill culvert site to observe what needs to be done and will now be going forward with the project design. Mr. Benson asked Mr. Higgins to get the final figures and estimated delivery date for the planned new truck in order to set the financing interest rate with Northfield Savings Bank. Mr. Higgins indicated the likely delivery date would be between the beginning of March and the middle of April, 2022.
b. Nicom Proposal for crack sealing: Mr. Benson made a motion to have Nicom spend one day on Ridge Road sealing cracks. The amount in the budget for crack sealing is $4,350.00. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motions which carried unanimously: 5-0-0.
F. NEW BUSINESS
a. The Board accepted the resignation letter of Rachel Rose.
b. Mr. Mike Lints, Auditor, attended the meeting to get a better sense of how the Town business transpires. Mr. Lints pointed out that two auditors are needed int order to properly audit the accounts. Mr. Benson stated that the Town Clerk does a review of the accounts and an outside auditor firm is also hired to review the Town’s accounts.
G. OLD BUSINESS:
1. Cemetery Budget Question: Mr. Joe Mangan, Town Cemeteries Sexton, has requested that the insurance money for the repair of stones in the Ridge Road Cemetery also be used to repair the fencing. Mr. Mangan will be requested to present the Board with an overall plan for his work on the cemeteries for the remainder of the year. Mr. Mangan’s budget for the year is $26,000.
Mr. Benson, Mr. LaRocque, and Mr. Kimmel, along with Mr. Mangan, met in a special meeting on July 13 to review proposed updates and revisions to the Town’s Cemeteries Rules and Regulations. Mrs. Peterson had obtained versions from other towns and prepared a preliminary draft for Brookfield. Copies of the draft document have been given to Mrs. Flint and Mrs. Threlkeld, allowing all Board members to review it and be ready to vote on it at the next Board meeting on August 9th. The draft proposal will be posted for public review and comment.
2. ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act of 2021): The State of Vermont has earmarked $70,000 a year for a two-year period for to be used for projects supporting public health. The Town must follow certain guidelines and restrictions in order to qualify for funding. A public meeting must be held to get ideas from the constituents of Brookfield and the meeting must be facilitated by a third party. Mrs. Peterson will contact Two Rivers-Ottauquechee Regional Commission to ask them about facilitating a public meeting.
G. MEETING MINUTES
1. Regular meeting of 12 July 2021: Mr LaRocque made a motion to accept the minutes of the meeting of July 12, 2021 as presented. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion was carried: 3-0-2. As new members of the Board, Mrs. Flint and Mrs. Threldkeld abstained as they did not attend the meeting.
2. Special Meeting 13 July 2021: Mr. Benson made a motion to accept the minutes of the Special Meeting of July 13, 2021 as presented. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion carried: 3-0-2.
H. PAYROLL AND AP WARRANTS: Mr. LaRocque moved to accept the accounts payable report for a total of $26,084.54 with the largest expense being Northeast Delta Dental in the amount of $4,637.92. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion was unanimously approved.
Mr. LaRocque moved to accept the second accounts payable report in the total amount of $2,227.00 with the largest expense being payable to Radio North Group, Inc. in the amount of $1,407.00. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion which was unanimously approved.
I. OTHER PROPER BUSINESS: Mr. Bob (Doc) Conniff appeared before the Board to discuss repairs to be made to the roof of the Town Clerk’s Office. He reported he would do some small repairs now in the amount of $500 and would present the Board with an estimate of costs by December 2021 for repairs to be done at a later time.
J. ADJOURNMENT: There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. Benson made a motion to adjourn. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the meeting was adjourned at 8:40 p.m.