Jun 112021

6:30 pm June 3, 2021
PRESENT and voting: Amy Borgman, Dan Childs, Emily Noyes, Starr Strong
PRESENT and not voting: Laura Rochat, Librarian

-TREASURER’S REPORT: Dan reminds us that we are near the end of our current fiscal year (as of 6/30/21) and notes we are still owed some Town funds. He will contact the Town Clerk’s office re: this. We are very close to our budgeted projections and our investments are sound, as well.
*Our numbers remain surprisingly consistent and, as restrictions lift and summer visitors arrive we expect our number of visitors and borrowers to increase.
*Laura will contact Cat Wright about shampooing the library rug.
*Per Laura the Library will have passes (some free, some reduced rate) for: Shelburne Farms, ECHO, Vt State Parks, State Historic Sites, VINS, Fairbanks Museum and the Vermont History Museum.
*The BFPL has been following conservative measures during the Covid shut-down with shorter hours, limited capacity and mandatory mask wearing. We are awaiting newer guidance as restrictions lift and will follow Town guidelines, based on State guidance. For now no changes will be made to hours, capacity or mask wearing.
*The Brookfield OC Playgroup is still not active but Laura continues to bring books to local daycare centers.
*The BFPL has been the beneficiary of books for youth from the Dept of Libraries as well as a donation of 8 books from a former patron. Laura has been processing these for our collection and has used this opportunity to weed some books from our existing collection.
*No surprises at Town Meeting, our budget passed. Dan Childs was re-elected and Starr Strong was elected to serve on the Board of Trustees (Welcome Starr!) The community gathered was officially informed of the 2 Little Libraries placed earlier this year.
*Summer Programming: We are planning to schedule an animal program/petting zoo at a time mutually agreed upon by the presenter and our library. As circumstances will depend on weather and temperature an inside option will be the Brookfield Town Hall. Further plans will depend on the scheduled time for the presentation.
*The Brookfield Historical Society is planning on some locally sited exhibits this summer around our community. One will be placed in our Library. Further details await.
*The annual Library summer reading program will proceed with limited programming. Laura and Christine Gilbert have coordinated on this and will distribute the materials.
*Scholarship Fund: The Board has decided to postpone initiating the Scholarship Fund this year, allowing another year of interest to accrue and establishing a process to decide on a recipient.
*NEXT MEETING: July 28, 2021 @ 6:30


Jun 092021

Minutes DRAFT
Brookfield Planning Commission
Date: Tuesday June 8, 2021
Gwynn Zakov, Chair, Tim Gershon, Christina Harlow, Martha Judy, Will White
Nancy Jacques, John Jickling
Public Present:  None
Chair Zakov called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m.
White/Gershon moved to approve minutes from the 5/11/21 meeting as submitted by Will White.  The minutes were approved unanimously.
The planning commission discussed the town of Brookfield’s local emergency plan which is currently being updated. Current bylaws will be congruous with the town’s FEMA emergency plan. Meetings for this will be the 3rd Tuesday of each month at 6 pm.
Martha Judy will ask Aaron Adler to come to discuss Telecommunications at a future meeting.
Discussed 4.17 Enforcement and 4.18 Costs of Technical Review
Judy/Zakov suggests adding Certificate of Use 3.17.to agenda next meeting.
Discussed Definitions, we will go back to definition of Accessory Dwelling Unit to allow more time to review.
Any other new/old business discussed.
Next meeting will be July 13, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.
Chair Zakov adjourned the meeting at 8:28 p.m.
Respectfully submitted,
Christina Harlow

Jun 082021

The Brookfield Board of Adjustment will hold a public hearing on June 30, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. at 3286 VT Route 65, Brookfield, VT to review the following request submitted under the Brookfield Development Bylaws:
Stephen Reid requested a potential variance under Section 3.10 of the Development Bylaws.  The proposed variance would be for construction of a 860 Square foot addition on the property owned by Josey Hastings and Gabriel Archdeacon located at 3286 VT Route 65, Brookfield, VT with less than the required setback established under Section 2.1(E)(4) of the Bylaws.  The Board of Adjustment will need to review the proposed site plans, with a site visit scheduled for June 30, 2021 at 6:00p.m.
Copies of the application are available for review at the Brookfield Town Clerk’s Office.  Hours are Tuesday to Thursday: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Jun 032021

Location: Virtual ZOOM Meeting and in-person at the Town (see below)
MEETING: Tuesday, June 8th 2021 TIME: 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Public to be heard
Approve minutes of 5/11/2021 meeting
Update on Brookfield’s Local Hazard Mitigation Plan from Chair Zakov. Brookfield must update the plan and Chair Zakov will represent the Planning Commission as edits for 2021 are made. Chair Zakov will be looking for a volunteer PC member to assist with the edits. The previous PC reps were former Chair/member Aaron Adler and current member Will White.
Review progress on zoning bylaw update and continue review of bylaws of sections 4.17, 4.18 and start on the definition section. Commissioners will find definition examples from two other towns for reference during the definition discussion. As before members will review these sections before the next meeting.
Any other new/old business
Set date of next meeting

Town of Brookfield is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Brookfield Planning Commission
Time: Jun 8, 2021 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Every month on the Second Tue, until Oct 12, 2021, 5 occurrence(s)
Jun 8, 2021 07:00 PM
Jul 13, 2021 07:00 PM
Aug 10, 2021 07:00 PM
Sep 14, 2021 07:00 PM
Oct 12, 2021 07:00 PM
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Jun 012021

The Board of Library Trustees will meet at the Brookfield Public Library on Thursday evening, June 3rd, 2021 at 6:30 pm. Members of the public are invited to attend.
LIBRARY AGENDA for Trustee Meeting, June 3, 2021
-Treasurer’s Report
-Librarian’s Report
-New Business
*Welcome Starr!
-Old Business
*Summer Programming
*Scholarship Fund
-Anything else?

May 272021

Town of Brookfield 2021 Annual Meeting  (Approved as amended)
The legal voters of the Town of Brookfield met for the annual Town Meeting, behind the Brookfield Elementary School at 1725 Ridge Road, Saturday, May 22, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. to transact the following business:
Call to Order at 10:15 a.m.
Moderator, Gregory Wight, opened the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance.
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.
Article 2: To hear and act on reports of the Town Officers.
John Benson, Selectboard Chair, spoke in remembrance of 2 Brookfield residents who passed in the last year and were a large part of the community.  Sam Dilcer was a Town Auditor for several years and worked diligently to have the Town Report completed for Town Meeting. Ray Peck, born and raised in Brookfield, was the Road Foreman for a number of years.
J. Benson welcomed the new Road Foreman, Tim Higgins. He thanked Rob Wheatley for stepping into the interim Road Foreman position until a new replacement was hired. He recognized Bonnie Fallon for her work as the “Green-Up Lady”, and acknowledged her stepping down.  The Conservation Commission has stepped up as the point of contact for Green-up Day.  Dan Childs and Stuart Edson were also thanked for their work in helping to get fast speed internet, ECFiber, into Brookfield.
J. Benson continued to thank all the Town Officials for keeping the Town running and Kasey Peterson, Administration Assistant, keeping people informed and setting up Zoom for Selectboard meetings during the pandemic. He acknowledged the great job the Road Crew is doing and that they completed major work on East Hill. The Town is having a town-wide reappraisal done. The Selectboard is working on setting the weight limits on the roads, and posting them.  The only agency who enforces the weight limits is the Department of Motor Vehicles.
Dennis LaRocque discussed the progress on the upgrading/rebuilding of the Town Garage.  The Committee was able to meet a few times to identify the garage concerns.  They found a 4 ½ bay would be the best fit. This would be 4 bays with ½ for an office and conference room.  If the Fire Department is included, it would be another 2 ½ bays.  They know the Town is not ready to move forward and is looking into more options.  He said if anyone is interested in joining the committee, to please contact the Selectboard.
Jeff Kimmel said the delay in the Town Reports were due to illness and the electronic version became available about a week before Town Meeting and the printed version became available Thursday.  He plans on sending the remaining copies by mail next week.  The Selectboard is looking at improving the process. The Town Report isn’t normally a Selectboard function, but a function of the town auditors.  Since S. Dilcer stepped down a few years ago, the Selectboard had to step up.  If there is anyone with publishing skills, they would like him/her to step forward to help. An option is to hire someone to create the Town Report.  One way to pay for it is to amend the line item in the Town Report adding money to the budget.
Lew Stowell discussed the current situation with the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) and said the Selectboard should appoint a committee to continue to monitor the EAB situation.  He recommended the Town Forester should be the ad hoc point of contact.  Kate Forrer, current Town Forester, stated Jon Jickling is on the ballot to replace her and wanted to confirm that everyone knew about EAB.  Currently there is no sign of them in Brookfield but they are showing up in 10 Vermont counties.  J. Jickling, a member of the Conservation Commission, stated they are spread by the transport of firewood.  They plan on having a monitoring system by setting up 16 traps strategically around town. It is a slow-moving infestation.  J. Benson said if you are interested in being a part of the ad hoc committee to contact J. Jickling.
Chris LaMonda, Barre Town EMS, stopped by to say hi and that is was nice to see everyone outside.  Some of the issues the EMS faced this year included the ambulance transporting service and the adjustment to income.  They have been helping with the Covid-19 testing and vaccines.  He stated that they are having a clinic today and Sunday for the vaccines.  They had 200 shots available each day.  He encouraged anyone with questions to stop by the Barre Town EMS office or call them.
Phyllis Humez, Lister, spoke about reappraisal and their progress.  She supports Sean Boyce, Vermont Appraisal Company, in scheduling site visits.  It is a 2-year process that started in October.  He has visited 350 properties and is focusing on structures.  He currently has a few left on the east side of town.  He should finish in that area by the end of summer.  She sends a letter out to property owners 2 weeks in advance.  Please contact her if you have a time restriction or any other concerns.
Tina O’Donnell requested the candidates on the ballot, who were present, be identified for voters’ purposes.
Article 3:  To see if the Town will authorize the Selectboard to borrow money in anticipation of revenues.
Motion by Erik Nielsen, seconded by Ray Mayer.
J. Benson said this is a safe-guard that was needed before changing tax collection to twice yearly, and adjusting to a fiscal year date. This is kept as an article in case we have an emergency and it allows us to request money if needed.
Call to vote. Motion carried.
Article 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.
Motion by Mike Stoddard, seconded by Dave Sanville that the first payment of 2021/2022 property taxes be due November 6th, 2021; the second payment due May 7th, 2022.
Discussion included sending out a tax bill for each installment, 2 copies, and emailing copies. No decision was made to change the current method of mailing tax bills.
Call to vote. Motion carried.
Article 5:  To approve a 12-month budget for the financial year of July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022 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.
Motion by Rachel Rose, seconded by M. Stoddard.
Aaron Adler questioned the several large balances in the budget.  J. Benson confirmed there was money from the State being used for the current town-wide reappraisal with no increase in taxes.  There was money received from a FEMA grant for a West Street road reconstruction that is set aside.  The Town covers the initial cost, and grants go back into the budget as revenue.  We started the equipment fund which we tapped into for the grader.
Teresa Godfrey, Treasurer, stated any balances left at the end of the fiscal year for the general and highway funds are credited towards taxes in the following year.  Last year the credit was $95,000.
Charlie Keeler made the motion to amend the budget by $2000 for the Town Report to be contracted out and D. Childs seconded.
Called to vote on amendment.  Motion carried.
After no more discussion, original article with amendment was voted on.  Motion carried.
Article 6:  To see if the Town will authorize the Selectboard to purchase a new Town dump truck, the cost not to exceed $198,000, and to be financed over a three-year period of 2021-2024.
J. Benson said he needed to amend the amount needed by $2500 due to pricing increase from vendors since the quote in December. The Town owns 3 dump trucks and trades one every three years (so the truck is 9 years old at trade-in). This maintains the reliability of the fleet. The new amount needed would then become $200,500.
Motion by Holly Dustin, seconded by Linda Runnion, to amend the amount by $2500.
R. Rose asked if the equipment fund could be used but J. Benson said that fund is usually used when other issues come into play. They have 3 quotes and they vary slightly. The quote includes finance fees and all the truck needs to be ready to run, i.e., plow and salt spreader hook-ups and radio installation.
Motion by Kelly Smith, seconded by R. Rose to amend that $2500 be taken from the equipment fund.
Called the question.  Motion failed.
Called to vote as amended, adding $2500 to purchase price.  Motion carried.
When asked about a 10-wheeler, J. Benson said it is a straight dump truck, trading in the 6-wheeler, for $205,000. To delay a year would push the schedule out, causing a ripple effect.  The cost could increase in the year.
Called the question.  Motion carried.
Article 7:  To approve a 12-month budget for the financial year of July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022 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.
Motion by M.Stoddard, seconded by Marylou Maeder.
The cost of the new truck is already included in the budget. It is not an addition to the budget.
Jack Zebora asked about Eagle Peak Road needing to be wider and J. Benson explained the cost of rebuilding sections of road, Mother Nature, and planning which roads need most attention.  We have a three person road crew with one part-time person to fill in when there is illness or vacation time taken. Northfield paved all their roads, and maintaining them is more costly than dirt roads. The Road Crew tries to repair a couple of “mud bog” areas in the roads a year unless we are hit by a major storm.
Dennis Boggs asked if there is a 5 year plan identifying these spots.
J. Benson said the Road Crew knows which spots need more attention, and they let the Board know.
Called the question.  Motion carried.
Article 8 A:  To see if the Town of Brookfield will vote to have 5 members on the Selectboard by floor vote at Town Meeting on May 22, 2021 (17 V.S.A. 2650(b)(1)).
Patty Kennedy stated this question was proposed last year, and that more members could spread the workload.
A. Adler, retired lawyer, looked up the Statute and found a technical concern. The warning is supposed to state the term as one, or two years.
J. Benson said no one in the group supporting 5 members came and talked to them or the Admin. Asst. about what the Board objectives are. One statement in the flier states that two could work outside the Board, which is technically correct but Vermont League of Cities and Towns (VLCT) doesn’t feel that is good practice. It should be in an open forum. As far as the possibility of too many unanimous votes isn’t a bad tribute. The philosophy is that an item comes to the Board, they discuss it, and for the good of the Community show cohesiveness. They take a kitchen table approach.
Amy Ingrassia questioned their communication skills.  As a Representative for the White River Valley Ambulance (WRVA), she has asked the Board several times for the written agreement between the Board and WRVA but never received it.  There was an issue on Eagle Peak Road that took four years to fix it.
D. Boggs felt some ideas were often dismissed, and that there is a lack of openness. More members means more diversity and a wider group of people to pull from. The trend in Vermont is to go to 5-member boards. Brookfield and Tunbridge, in the local area, are 3-member, but Randolph, Chelsea, and Braintree all have 5 members.  A quorum is 2 with a 3 member Board and 3 with a 5 member Board. More minds solve more problems.
Call the vote.  Motion carried.
A request was made to “divide the house”.  The ayes stood; Perry Kacik and A. Ingrassia counted and compared the count.  68 ayes. The nays stood, were also counted, and the counts compared.  27 nays.
Motion carried.
     B:  If the above passed, per Brookfield Town Meeting standards, set the date of a Special Election by Australian ballot, not less than 60 days from this vote for adding 2 new Selectboard Members.  Anyone interested in being elected will need to submit a “Candidate Consent” form to the Town Clerk 30 days from the date of this vote (17 V.S.A. 2650(b)(2)(A)). Special Election date will be determined by the actual Town Meeting 2021 adjusted date.
Motion by Alishia Drury, seconded by Jon Binhammer.
It was stated that there needs to be clarification of 1 or 2-year terms.  The method of voting will be the same, as absentee or in person.
T. O’Donnell would like the results of this current election posted on Front Porch Forum and have those running for office put something on FPF so we know for whom we are voting.
Motion by D. Boggs, seconded by William White, to amend the motion to be for 2-year terms.
The stipulation is to be confirmed with the Secretary of State’s office and VLCT for the proper method of voting.
Motion carried.
Motion by K. Smith, seconded by A. Drury, to have the vote on Saturday, July 24th, with the Consent of Candidate forms due to the Town Clerk by June 21st.
Motion carried.
     C:   To see if the voters of Brookfield will increase the budget by $1,200 for the 2 additional Selectboard Member stipend, if section A of this article is approved.
Motion by Linda Garrett, seconded by R. Mayer.
With no discussion, motion carried.
Senator Mark McDonald stopped by to share in the gathering, and appreciated the fact that we were not all in Hollywood Squares TV screens.
Article 9:  To transact any other proper business.
S. Edson wanted to comment that as an elected official, a Lister, he has dealt with ire of unhappy citizens and he voted to go to 5 members, but wanted to give the Selectboard a thank you for all the work they do.
A. Drury said that while visiting the Floating Bridge, her family realized that the 5-sided bench in the park is in need of repairs. If someone would find the wood, they would be willing to do the repairs and paint. (Notation by recorder: Al Wilker, original builder of the bench, presented A. Drury with some money as a contribution to help purchase wood.)
Amy Borgman, Library Trustee with a lot of other wonderful members, wanted to let everyone know about the 2 little Libraries in Town.  One is across from the Old Town Hall and the other is in West Brookfield.
Starr Strong, a member of the Conservation Commission, said they have taken up B. Fallon’s position for Green-up Day, and hopes support and enthusiasm for Green-up Day will continue.  The members are planning on sorting returnable and recyclables differently in the future.
Tim Schroeder commented that the East Hill, Farnsworth Lane, and Woods Road signs are all missing.  By messing up the bolts, the culprits wrap a chain around the signs and pull the post out.  The Public Safety Advisory Committee did a complete inventory a few years ago, more signs have been ordered.
J. Benson thanked the school for the use of the tent.
Motion by R. Mayer, seconded by Vance Smith, the meeting adjourned at 12:49 p.m.
Motion carried.
Respectfully submitted:  Teresa Godfrey, Town Clerk

May 172021

Brookfield Conservation Commission Meeting
May 17, 2021
7:00 pm

Via Zoom Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87015147740?pwd=NmRvaTVGTGFKdGJRdFlIVjJzdnpvZz09
Meeting Agenda
1. Review Agenda
2. Public Comment
3. Approval of Minutes of the April 16, 2021 meeting
4. Annual meeting – officers etc.
5. Green Up Day wrap-up, ideas for next year
6. Planning Commission, and zoning bylaw
7. Values mapping and strategic planning
8. Brookfield Elementary Schoolyard habitat project update
9. Other business
10. Adjourn

May 172021

The Public Safety Advisory Committee for the Town of Brookfield, VT will meet remotely by electronic means on May 19, 2021 at 5:35 PM
Information on how to access the remote meeting:
By telephone: Dial [(701) 802-5217].
When prompted, enter the meeting Access Code]. 3053801
Please review our “Informational Handout for Remote Public Meetings” to understand how these electronic meetings will be managed. If you wish to make a public comment but do not have the ability to comment remotely during the meeting, please email your comment(s) to Brookfield Public Safety Advisory Committee at publicsafety@brookfieldvt.org
To ensure smooth access, we recommend that you test your remote meeting software in advance of the meeting. If you have difficultly accessing the meeting, please email publicsafety@brookfieldvt.org
WEDNESDAY May 21, 2021, 5:35 PM
All times will depend upon the amount of public participation and committee discussion.
By telephone: Dial [(1-701) 802-5217]. when prompted, enter the meeting Access Code]. 3053801

5:35 PM: Call to Order
5:36 PM: Additions or deletions to the agenda
Public comment
5:38 PM: Review and approve the April 21, 2021 meeting minutes
: Open public comment
5:42 PM: Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) Update
Public comment
6:05 PM: Review and Discussion of OCSD Activities including Patrol Hours, Reports and Bills.
Public comment
6:10 PM: 2021 Speed Cart Deployments-
Public comment
6:15: Traffic and Weight Limit Sign Status
Public comment
6:20 PM: Traffic Ordinance Status
Public comment
6:25 PM Parking in Pond Village
Public comment
6:35 PM Stone Road Parking Issues
Public Comment
6:45 PM
Public Comment
7:00 PM: June Public Safety Message
Public comment
7:05 PM Setting the Next Meeting
7:10 PM Inviting Guests to the Next Meeting
Final Public Comment
7:15: PM Entertain a motion to adjourn the meeting.

Remote Public Meetings
All public body meetings for the [insert name of municipality] will be conducted remotely via electronic means for the duration of Governor Scott’s State of Emergency declaration. Whenever feasible, the public will also be able to access and participate in the remote meetings by dialing in through telephone.
Accessing a Meeting
Please refer to each public body’s notice and agenda for information on how to access a remote meeting. Please note that whether you join by telephone, computer, or device, you may be put on hold or in a waiting “room” until granted access to the meeting. You also may be muted or restricted from using any chat function until the public comment portion of the meeting.
All meetings will be conducted in accordance with the respective “Rules of Procedure” of each public body, to the extent practicable. The public body will follow its agenda and allow public attendees to participate through voice (audio) means where feasible or alternatively using any chat function during the designated public comment periods on the agenda and at other applicable times as needed.
Initially, the meeting’s host/organizer will mute all participants that are not members of the public body. This is necessary to control background noise. The host/organizer will then unmute participants or allow participants to unmute themselves when invited to speak by the Chair of the public body.
Please review the following guidelines:

The Chair will invite comment:

during the time designated on the agenda for public comment;
after the public body discusses each agenda item;
before the public body takes action;
during any open public comment period, if applicable; and
other times as determined by the public body.

When a participant/attendee is unmuted, they must state their name before commenting.

If the public body successfully moves to enter an executive session, the meeting’s host/organizer will then place everyone that is not part of the executive session on hold or a virtual waiting “room.” This will prevent attendees from hearing or participating in the meeting during the duration of the executive session. When the public body exits executive session, the host/organizer will then grant access back to the remote meeting.
When the public body adjourns the meeting, the host/organizer will end the electronic meeting by turning off/closing the remote meeting software. Attendees will be automatically disconnected.
Minutes and other public records that were part of the meeting will be made available in accordance with VT’s Open Meeting and Public Records Laws.
To learn more about Remote Public Meetings and the Open Meeting Law, please visit the Secretary of State’s Municipal Assistance webpage at https://sos.vermont.gov/municipal-division/laws-resources/covid-19-response/.