Teresa Godfrey

Feb 272020


Brookfield Selectboard Meeting of February 24, 2020

Draft Minutes

Town Clerk’s office on Ralph Road

Selectboard:  Cory Haggett, Jeff Kimmel

Public Attendees:  Teresa Godfrey (Recorder), Ray Peck (Highway Foreman), Dennis LaRocque, Gabe Freitag, Dennis Tatro, Laura Tatro, Dennis Boggs, Justin Poulin, Sandy Vondrasek (The Herald), Steve Schaefer, Patricia Kennedy

1. Mr. Haggett called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m

2.  Adjustments to Agenda: No adjustments

3.  Public Comment-Dennis Boggs-Dirt Road Maintenance:

Mr. Boggs questioned if there is a published or written document on how we are maintaining the dirt roads, if there is a strategy or if we spend in certain spots.

Mr. Kimmel stated they discuss with Mr. Peck on what needs to be done.

Mr. Peck said he did an estimate and the amount of gravel/fill etc. needed to repair/restore a section of road is approximately $18,000/mile and that doesn’t include the hauling costs and man hours.

Mr. Boggs questioned if the State has more money to do the dirt roads for better drainage?

Mr. Peck said half the roads are built on top soil and require a lot product to bring them up to standard.

When Mr. Boggs asked what the strategy was, Mr. Haggett said Mr. Peck notes what roads need doing and he hits the worst spots and we do what we can afford to do.  Mr. Peck commented that paving is about $130,000 per mile.  Grants are used as they come in but they only cover portions of the cost.  The roads have to meet State specifications.  The Road Crew is working on finishing East Hill.  They have to work on drainage so the sediment doesn’t end up in the rivers and they only have one more section to do before June 30th.

4.  New Business:

A. Pre-town meeting Informational Session:

Ms. Vondrasek, Herald reporter, questioned how much of the loader purchase and garage build will impact the taxes and how much is saved for these items on the Warning. She also questioned why the proposed budget was not balanced for revenues and expenses.

Mr. Kimmel replied that John Benson, Selectboard Chair, has been working with an   outside firm and with the water quality at the garage, an expansion, and a sprinkler system, they are looking for financial approval at Town Meeting to build a needed garage.

Mrs. Godfrey stated there is approximately $60,000 in the garage fund from the last 2 tax years and $40,000 towards equipment purchases. She said that she also realized tonight the proposed budget wasn’t balanced and Mr. Kimmel said it will have to be amended at Town Meeting because the budget has been printed in the Town Report as it stands.

Mr. Poulin wanted to know what the options are for the garage, what is the goal and issues with the existing garage.

Mr. Haggett said we can raze the current one and start over, build a new shed where the current smaller one is that would have heat and electricity, or expand the current building.  Mr. Peck stated that there is no room in the current garage when working on equipment, the new $300k  grader sits out in the weather, OSHA requires that hazardous materials are stored in a separate room, diesel equipment won’t start if it is too cold so the vehicles need to be parked in a heated building, they need a welding hood and the current garage doesn’t have appropriate room for one.

Mr. Haggett stated the new Chelsea garage cost $1,000,000 and we are not ready to break ground.

Mr. Poulin would like to see paper hand-outs at Town Meeting so the voters can refer to them when asking questions.

Ms. Vondrasek asked the Board why they are opposed to a 5 member Selectboard per the Town Report.

Mr. Kimmel said we will see if it is approved and they cannot immediately appoint at Town Meeting.  The Selectboard would ask people to apply then appoint 2 new members.

B. Highway Report:

Mr. Peck reported that mud season is coming up.  When we get new vehicles, and we buy the extended warranty, why isn’t a wiper motor covered?

Mr. Haggett said to ask Kasey Peterson, Administrative Assistant, to pursue it.

5. Old Business:

A. Tatro Public Assemblage:

The Selectboard was concerned with closing the road, Snow Road, off for 7 hours for the Justin Morgan Farm memorial sign races.  Mr. Tatro said the races will be from 1:00-3:00 or so and that is the only time needed to close the road.  It took 14 years to locate where the farm used to be.

Mr. Haggett suggested they contact the Town about a week before the event to have the road graded.

On motion by Mr. Kimmel, seconded by Mr. Haggett, the Board voted to approve the Application for Tatro’s Public Assemblage Permit for the Justin Morgan Memorial Day on May 30, 2020.  Vote 2-0-0.

B. Personnel Policy Changes:

The Board tabled this.  No forward progress.

C. Approve 27 January 2020 meeting Minutes:

The Board tabled this.  Minutes not received for approval.

6.  Payroll/AP Warrant:

On motion by Mr. Kimmel, seconded by Mr. Haggett, the Board voted to pay the warrants in the amount of $68,531.61.  This includes diesel purchase of $14,707.82 from Global Montello Group Corp, $38,120.54 for county tax to the Orange County Treasurer.  Vote 2-0-0

7.  Other Proper Business:

Mr. LaRocque questioned why the Fire Department budget went up this year.  Mr. Haggett replied that the Fire Station is in need of a new roof.

Mrs. Godfrey stated she needed to know what is up with the Town Report and where it is at.

Mr. Kimmel said it has been submitted to the printer and has come back with a proof.  The plan is to have them mailed out on Thursday, February 27th.  The electronic version will be available on the Town Website on Tuesday, February 25th.

8.  Adjournment:

On motion by Mr. Kimmel, seconded by Mr. Haggett, the Board voted to adjourn at 7:45 until the next meeting of March 9, 2020 at 6:30 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Teresa Godfrey, Recorder.




Feb 182020

Minutes DRAFT

Brookfield Planning Commission Date: Tuesday, February 11, 2020 DRAFT

Present: Gwynn Zakov, Chair, Timothy Gershon, Jon Jickling, Martha Judy, William White

Chair Zakov called the meeting to order at 7:12 p.m.

Inquired about public to be heard.  No public attended.

Approved letter of support for the Charles and Theresa Taplin conservation project to be submitted to the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board.

The Planning Commission continued to work on revisions to the Development bylaws.

White/Jickling moved to adjourn.  The meeting adjourned at 8:27 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Martha Judy

Feb 122020

Brookfield Conservation Commission

February 18, 2019 7:00 pm

Brookfield Public Library

Meeting Agenda

  1. Review Agenda
  1. Public Comment
  1. Approval of Minutes of the January meeting
  1. Lamson Pond Fen Conservation Project update
  1. Planning Commission collaboration re: Forest Fragmentation discuss next steps
  1. Brookfield  town website update
  1. Emerald Ash Borer and Brookfield PSC – Town Forester update
  1. Green-Up Day report
  1. Prepare for Town Meeting
  1. Brainstorm session continuation – projects for 2020
  1. March 11 presentation by Rudy Rudell of White River Partnership about the watershed – proposal to co-sponsor this presentation with Braintree and Randolph CCs.
  1. Other business
  1. Adjourn
Feb 022020

A statewide Presidential Primary will be held on TUESDAY, MARCH 3, 2020 to vote for candidates for the following offices:
The polls will open at a.m. and will close at 7:00 p.m. The polling place(s) is/are located at:

Town (or City) Clerk
EARLY or ABSENTEE BALLOTS: You can request early/absentee ballots at any time during the election year. The latest a ballot can be requested
in _ is
(Town) (date and time office closes prior to election)
You or a family member can request early ballots in person, in writing, by telephone, or on your My Voter Page at mvp.sec.state.vt.us. An authorized person can request ballots for you in person or in writing.
CHECKLIST: posted at town clerk’s office by Sunday, February 2, 2020. If your name is not on it, then you must register to vote.
SAMPLE BALLOTS POSTED: Wednesday, February 12, 2020.
REGISTER TO VOTE: There is no deadline to register to vote. You will be able to register to vote on the day of the election. Please register early by visiting the town clerk’s office or going online to olvr.sec.state.vt.us.
Methods of voting early/absentee in the 45 days before the election (ballots available by January 17, 2020):

  1. Vote in the town clerk’s office prior to the election.
  2. Voter may take the ballots out of the clerk’s office and return in the same manner as if the ballots were received by mail.
  3. Have ballot mailed to you and return it to clerk’s office before Election Day or to the polling place before 7 p.m. on Election Day.
  4. If you are in the military, live overseas, or are ill or disabled you may receive your ballot electronically and utilize our accessible online ballot marking tool, but you must print your ballot and return it by mail.
  5. If you are ill or disabled, you may ask the town clerk, on or before the deadline to request an absentee ballot, to have two justices of the peace bring a ballot to you at your home on any day preceding the day of the election (once ballots are prepared) or the day of election.
    Identification Required for First Time Registrants by Mail: If you are registering individually for the first time by mail or online, you must provide a copy of identification along with your registration: current valid photo I.D., or a utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document showing your name and current address. If you do not provide I.D. or other documentation with your registration and do not have it when you come to the polls, you will be offered a provisional ballot.
    CASTING A PROVISIONAL BALLOT: If you accept the offer to vote a provisional ballot, you must complete a sworn affidavit on the provisional ballot envelope swearing that you are qualified to vote in Vermont and in the polling place where you are, and that you submitted an application to register to vote before the deadline. You will be given a card explaining how you can find out if your ballot was counted one week after the election by calling the Vermont Secretary of State’s Office at 1-800-439-8683.
    If your name was dropped from the checklist in error or has not been added even though you submitted an application: Explain the situation to your town clerk or presiding officer and ask that your name be added to the checklist. The town clerk or presiding officer will investigate the situation and then either have you complete a registration form and then add your name to the checklist or explain why you cannot be added.
    If the town clerk or presiding officer and BCA members present cannot determine that you are entitled to be added to the checklist on Election Day, you may appeal to a superior court judge, who will give you a decision on Election Day OR you may vote a provisional ballot.
    Any voter who wants assistance for any reason may bring the person of their choice into the voting booth to help or may ask for assistance from two election officials.
    Voters who cannot get from the car into the polling place may have a ballot brought to a car outside the polls by two election officials.
    Any U. S. citizen and resident of a Vermont town or city who submitted an application to register to vote on or before election day is entitled to vote regardless of race or physical ability.
    • Vote more than once per election, either in the same town or in different towns.
    • Mislead the board of civil authority about your own or another person’s eligibility to vote.
    • Socialize in a manner that will disturb other voters.
    • Offer a bribe, threaten, or intimidate a person to vote for a candidate.
    • Hinder or interfere with the progress of a voter going into or out of a polling place. Vermont law provides that a person cannot campaign within a polling place but does NOT specify any number of feet that campaigners need to be away from the polls outside. The presiding officer will set reasonable rules for where campaigners can stand.
    The Election Officials at the polling place are here to serve you.
    If you have any questions, or need assistance while voting, ask your town clerk or any election official for help.
    If you do not understand something, or you believe a mistake has been made that has not been corrected, or you have a question that cannot be answered to your satisfaction at the polling place:
    Call the Elections Division, Office of the Secretary of State
    1-800-439-VOTE (439-8683)
    (Accessible by TDD)
    If you believe that any of your voting rights have been violated, you may call the Elections Division at 800-439-8683 or (802) 828-2363. You may also file an Administrative Complaint with the Secretary of State’s Office, 128 State Street, Montpelier, VT 05633-1101.
    If you believe you have witnessed efforts to commit any kind of fraud or corruption in the voting process, you may report this to your local United States Attorney’s Office, the County State’s Attorney or the Vermont Attorney General.
    If you have witnessed actual or attempted acts of discrimination or intimidation in the voting process, you may report this to the Civil Rights Division of the United States Department of Justice at (800) 253-3931.
    • Go to the entrance checklist table, give your name, and if asked, your street address to the election official in a loud voice.
    • Wait until your name is repeated and checked off by the official.
    • If you want to use the accessible voting system tell the entrance checklist official at this time. An election official will take you to the accessible ballot marking device, enter a security code, and then leave you to mark and print your ballot privately. More details about our new accessible ballot marking device are available on our website at http://www.sec.state.vt.us. Click on Elections>Voters>Accessibility.
    • You must ask for a major party ballot (Democratic or Republican). This is required by Vermont law for the Presidential Primary. (17 V.S.A. §2704.)
    • Take the ballot from the election official and enter a voting booth. Once inside the voting booth, mark your ballot for each race.
    • To vote for a candidate, fill in the oval to the right of the name of the candidate. Do not vote for more candidates than the “Vote for not more than #” for each office. If you vote for more than the “Vote for not more than #,” your vote will not count for that race.
    • WRITE-IN candidate(s). To vote for someone whose name is not
    printed on the ballot, use the blank “write-in” line on the ballot and either write in the name or paste on a sticker, then fill in the oval.
    • If you make a mistake or change your mind, DO NOT try to erase. Return your ballot and ASK an election official for a new ballot. If you make a mistake again, you may ask for another ballot. Each voter may have up to 3 ballots.
    • To cast your voted ballot: either insert your voted ballot into the tabulator machine, or in a hand count town, insert it into the ballot box.
    • Go to the exit checklist table, if any, and state your name. Wait until your name is repeated and checked off by the official.
    • Leave the voting area immediately by passing outside the guardrail.
    All voters who are in line at the polling place at 7p.m. will be permitted to vote. No voter can enter the polling place to vote after 7p.m.
Feb 022020



The legal voters of Brookfield are hereby warned to meet for the annual Town Meeting at the Brookfield Elementary School auditorium at 1725 Ridge Road, Tuesday, March 3, 2020 at 10:00 A.M. to transact the following business:


  1. To elect all officers as required by law for the ensuing year by Australian ballot. For this purpose, the polls will be open from 9:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M.
  2. To hear and act on reports of the Town Officers.
  3. To see if the Town will authorize the Selectboard to borrow money in anticipation of revenues.
  4. To see if the Town will vote to have all taxes paid into the Treasury as provided by law in two installments, and if so, to set the dates.
  5. To see if the Town will authorize the Selectboard to engage the firm of Vermont Appraisal Company to complete a Town-wide reappraisal of all properties within the Town. The cost for which shall not exceed $81,000; the funds for which are already in place.
  6. To see if the Town will vote to contribute $300.00 to the Randolph Area Mentoring Program (RAMP), a community-based mentoring program serving the communities of Brookfield, Braintree, and Randolph.
  7. To see if the Town will vote to contribute $250.00 to the Vermont Family Network, to provide services for families of children with special needs.
  8. To approve a 12 month budget for the financial year of July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021 to meet the expenses and liabilities of the Town General Fund and to authorize the Selectboard to set a tax rate sufficient to provide the same.
  9. To see if the Town will authorize the Selectboard to approve the construction of a new Town Garage building (or another option as presented and discussed at Town Meeting). The cost not to exceed $1,075,000, to be financed over a 25 to 30 year period.

10. To see if the Town will authorize the Selectboard to enter into a lease/purchase Agreement to replace the Town Highway Department Loader. The cost, allowing for the trade-in value for the current Loader, not to exceed $140,000 (plus finance charges), to be paid for over a 7-year period.

11. To approve a 12 month budget for the financial year of July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021 to meet the expenses and liabilities of the Town Highway Fund and to authorize the Selectboard to set a tax rate sufficient to provide the same.

12. To see if the Town will vote to have 5 members on the Selectboard by floor vote at Town Meeting. (17 VSA Sec. 2650(b)(1))

13. To transact any other proper business.

Dated at Brookfield, Vermont, this 30th day of January 2020.

Attest: Teresa Godfrey, Town Clerk: _______________________________

There will be an informational meeting about the Town Budget on Monday evening, February 24, 2020 at 6:30 P.M. at the Town Clerk’s Office

Jan 282020

DRAFT    Meeting Minutes of the Brookfield Conservation Commission         1-20-20

Present: Jon Binhammer, Starr Strong, Kathy Kinter, Sue Shea, Jon Jickling. Town Forester Kate Forrer came late.

Meeting came to order at 6:55PM

December minutes were unanimously approved as presented.

There was no one from the public in attendance.

Bylaws: Jon B. will have the bylaws for us to sign at the next meeting. He was unable to print them due to printer malfunction.

Act 171:  Jens Hilke, from VT Fish and Wildlife Dept., came to the meeting to explain Act 171, which became law 1/18.  His job is to work with towns to implement the act, the purpose of which is to maintain and improve ecological integrity of forest blocks and connectors throughout the state by incorporating such management goals into town plans and zoning. All towns are required to incorporate into their town plans land development that minimizes forest fragmentation and promotes health, viability and ecological function.  Town plans are now updated every 8 years.

He emphasized the importance and benefits of large blocks of forest, not only for ecological function, but for recreation, economics, scenic beauty, intrinsic worth and more.  In planning, the goal is to maintain economic, ecological and community function values, which are sure to overlap.

Brookfield is primarily a piedmont town with relatively small (several hundred acres) forest blocks, but because of their current connectedness and proximity to one another, they act ecologically like larger blocks.  The town is surrounded by much larger blocks to the east and west and it is critical to maintain connectivity to these blocks.  Our town has a fair bit of fragmentation due to all the roads, farmland and development.

Biofinder 3 (biofinder.vermont.gov) was just released.

Biofinder is an online mapping tool that allows VT citizens to explore the land and waters

in VT that are most important for supporting ecosystems, natural communities, habitats and species.

We looked at several maps of the town, each focusing on a particular feature such as forest blocks, riparian areas, physical landscapes rich in calcium, culverts and wildlife road crossings.  Jens mentioned the importance of the town adopting VTrans orange book standards for culverts.  These culverts are larger than those currently used and would be replaced by FEMA in event of severe flood damage.  He gave commission members copies of Mapping VT’s Natural Heritage, along with a CD of maps of the state and has offered to do a computer lab training with us.

Jens also facilitates community values mapping and suggested we consider this as a first step.  He offered to provide guidance as we move forward with implementation of Act 171.

Land conservation:  We discussed the potential of a land conservation plot.

Next meeting:  TUESDAY, Feb. 18, 2020   7:00 PM   Town  Library

Meeting Adjourned at 9:15 PM

Respectfully submitted,

Kathy Kinter

Jan 232020


Brookfield Planning Commission

Date: Wednesday, January 22, 2020


Nancy Jacques, Gwynn Zakov, Jon Jickling, Tim Gershon, William White


Jon Binhammer

Zakov called the meeting to order at 7:07 p.m.

Public to be heard:

Jon Binhammer, representing the Nature Conservancy, which is purchasing a conservation easement on a piece of property in Brookfield off of West St which is part of the Taplin/Brown farm. The easement will be around 60 acres. The easement would include public access from West St. Zakov motioned that the chair will draft a letter of support that will be warned for a vote at the February 11th Planning Commission meeting. Second by Jickling, approved unanimously. The town plan supports this on pages 48 through 54.

Jon Binhammer, as chair of the Conservation Commission, informed the Planning Commission that they are active and ready to work with the Planning Commission. He gave an update on what they’ve been working on, specifically identifying and mapping forest blocks and connectors.

Jickling/Gershon moved to approve the minutes of the Nov 13, 2019 meeting. Unanimously approved.

The Planning Commission reviewed the progress on Bylaw update.

The Planning Commission continued to work on revisions to the town Bylaws.

The date of the next meeting was set for 7:00 PM Tuesday February 11th.

White/Jacques moved to adjourn.  The meeting adjourned at 8:50 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

William White

Jan 212020


Brookfield Planning Commission

Date:  Wednesday, November 13, 2019


Geoff Girard, Martha Judy, Nancy Jacques, Gwynn Zakov, Jon Jickling

Zakov called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m.

Girard/Jickling moved to approve the minutes of the Oct 16, 2019 meeting. Unanimously approved.

Jickling,  member of the Brookfield Conservation Commission (CC), expressed the CC’s interest in supporting the Planning commission work revising the town bylaws.  Ideas for coordination between Commissions to follow.

The Planning Commission continued to work on revisions to the town Bylaws.

The date of the next meeting was set for Wednesday December 11th.

Judy/Girard moved to adjourn.  The meeting adjourned at 8:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Jon Jickling

Dec 122019

Town of Brookfield

P. O. Box 463

Brookfield, VT 05036

Phone: 802-276-3352


Pursuant to the provisions of 24 V.S.A. §1535 notice is hereby given that the Board of Abatement, within and for the Town of Brookfield, will meet on the 16th day of December, 2019 at 6:00 o’clock in the evening, at the Town Office in Brookfield.

                                                              Board of Abatement

                                                             By Teresa Godfrey      Date _11/26/2019__


Copy: Three Public Places

           Board Members


Constance Karalekas                                                        6:00 p.m.   December 16, 2019

Joanna Doerfer for Jane Doerfer’s Estate                         6:30 p.m.   December 16, 2019

                Appellant                                                            Time                      Date

* 24 V.S.A. §1535 states: the board may abate in whole or part taxes, interest, or collection fees accruing to the town in the following cases:

(1) Taxes of persons who have died insolvent;

(2) Taxes of persons who have removed from the state;

(3) Taxes of persons who are unable to pay their taxes, interest, and collection fees;

(4) Taxes in which there is manifest error or a mistake of the Listers;

(5) Taxes upon real or personal property lost or destroyed during the tax year;

(6) the exemption amount available under 32 V.S.A. § 3802(11) to persons otherwise eligible for exemption who file a claim on or after May 1 but before October 1 due to the claimant’s sickness or disability or other good cause as determined by the board of abatement; but that exemption amount shall be reduced by 20 percent of the total exemption for each month or portion of a month the claim is late filed.

(7), (8) [Repealed.]

(9) taxes upon a mobile home moved from the town during the tax year as a result of a change in use of the mobile home park land or parts thereof, or closure of the mobile home park in which the mobile home was sited, pursuant to 10 V.S.A. § 6237.

Dec 122019

Brookfield Conservation Commission

December 16, 2019 7:00 pm

Meeting Agenda

  1. Review  Agenda
  • Public Comment
  • Approval of Minutes of the November meeting
  • Report on sharing Bylaws with Selectboard
  • Planning Commission collaboration re: Forest Fragmentation
  •  Our presence on the town website
  • Emerald Ash Borer and Brookfield PSC
  • Green-Up Day
  • Brainstorm session – projects for 2020
  • Other business
  1.  Adjourn