Teresa Godfrey

Feb 022020
 

TOWN OF BROOKFIELD ANNUAL MEETING

        WARNING

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:

Article:

  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
 

Minutes

Brookfield Planning Commission

Date: Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Present:

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

Public:

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
 

Minutes

Brookfield Planning Commission

Date:  Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Present:

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

NOTICE OF BOARD OF ABATEMENT HEARING

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__

                                                                     Chair/Clerk

Copy: Three Public Places

           Board Members

           Appellants

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
Dec 042019
 

DRAFT       Meeting Minutes of the Brookfield Conservation Commission             Nov. 25, 2019

Present: Jon Binhammer, Starr Strong, Kathy Kinter, Sue Shea, Jon Jickling

Meeting came to order at 7:00 PM

Review of October minutes which were unanimously approved as presented.

There was no one from the public in attendance.

Bylaws: We reviewed the second draft, amended it and voted unanimously to adopt it as amended.  Jon B will make the agreed upon changes and email us the final draft. He will also give it to the Select Board for their review.  We will sign the bylaws at our December meeting.

Open meeting law: Kathy reviewed open meeting law.

Forest Fragmentation:  Sue presented a recap of the webinar she watched concerning Act 171, the purpose of which is to maintain and improve ecological integrity of forest blocks and connectors throughout the state by incorporating such goals into town plans and zoning.  We agreed that given the Planning Commission’s current reassessment of Development Bylaws, we have a role to play in researching and providing input towards meeting the aforementioned goals of Act 171.

Needed Actions: 

Jon B. will attend the next Planning Commission meeting if there is time on their agenda. 

Sue will send our commission the link to the webinar so that we can watch prior to our next meeting. She will also contact Jens Hilke, wildlife biologist with VT Fish and Wildlife, to request that he attend our next meeting to discuss Act 171and BioFinder in detail.  Members of the Planning Commission will be invited to join us.

Development Bylaws:  Jon J. of the Planning Commission asked for input regarding the current regulations on setbacks along shorelines of town waterways.  After discussion that touched on current and best practices, the regional planning commission and state regulations, it was decided that our commission needs to first familiarize ourselves with the Development Bylaws.  Kathy suggested that the Planning Commission look to state regs for guidance as well.

Needed Actions:

Prior to the next meeting we will all review the Development Bylaws Jon J sent us.

Jon B will check with Two Rivers Regional Planning for their recommendations.

Other business: It was agreed that we need a visible presence on the town website, i.e, a Conservation Commission designated tab. 

            Need Action:

 We will look at other town websites to see what they have done and discuss this at the next meeting.

Next meeting:  Dec 16, 2019

Meeting Adjourned at 8:45 PM. 

Respectfully submitted,

Kathy Kinter

Dec 042019
 

Approved   Meeting Minutes of the Brookfield Conservation Commission             Oct. 21, 2019

Present: Jon Binhammer, Starr Strong, Kathy Kinter, Sue Shea, Jon Jickling

Meeting came to order at 7:03 PM

Review of August and September minutes.  Both were unanimously approved as presented.

There was no one from the public in attendance.

Bylaws: We began the review process.  Jon B will make the agreed upon changes and email another draft to review at the next meeting.

Open meeting law: The bylaws took so long it was decided to table this review until next meeting.

Programs:

A brief recap of the Baker Pond Paddle and Brookfield Town Forest Hike was made.  Seven were present at the paddle and 4 at the hike. Kathy suggested always having a sign-up sheet to get participants’ emails to add to the list she has begun.  This can be used to garner volunteers when needed as well as announce programs and projects.

EAB subcommittee:

Kate F, the town forester asked Jon B. if anyone from the commission wanted to serve on a sub-committee concerning ash borer.  Jon J. will contact her about serving on the committee.

Other business:

Sue will attend the forest fragmentation webinar by VT F&W tomorrow and share what she learned.  Jon B said Two Rivers has also addressed forest blocks and connectivity.  This issue is relevant to the Planning Commission as well as the Conservation Commission.

Meetings:  Kathy informed members that Teresa has posted our meetings and minutes on the town website.  All agreed that the commission needs a dedicated presence on the siteDiscussion of this will be added to the next agenda.   

Next meeting has been moved to Monday, Nov. 25th.

The rest of the agenda was tabled until next meeting.

Meeting Adjourned at 8:45 PM. 

Respectfully submitted,

Kathy Kinter

Dec 042019
 

Minutes

Brookfield Planning Commission

Date:  Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Present:

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

Nov 142019
 

Town of Brookfield

P. O. Box 463

Brookfield, VT 05036

Phone: 802-276-3352

NOTICE OF BOARD OF ABATEMENT HEARING

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 18th day of November, 2019 at 6:00 o’clock in the evening, at the Town Office in Brookfield.

                                                              Board of Abatement

                                                             By Teresa Godfrey      Date _11/6/2019__

                                                                     Chair/Clerk

Copy: Three Public Places

           Board Members

           Appellants

Joanna Doerfer for Jane Doerfer’s Estate                        6:00 p.m.   November 18, 2019

Constance Karalekas                                                        6:30 p.m.   November 18, 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.