Town of Brookfield
January 13, 2020 at 6:30 P.M.
Town Clerk’s Office
Present: John Benson (Chair), Cory Haggett, Jeff Kimmel, Ray Peck (Road Crew Foreman), Lew Stowell (Public Safety Advisory Committee), Dawn Conant; Public Present: Dennis Larocque, Amy Ingrassia, Jack Zebora
1. Call to Order – 6:30 p.m.
2. Adjustments to Agenda –
Ms. Ingrassia is interested in the open WRVA Brookfield Representative position. Mr. Haggett explained that the meeting is the 3rd Monday of the month and it would entail going to the meetings, and reporting back to the Selectboard on their budget and vision. The position has limited authority, but would be the eyes and ears for the Town.
Mr. Haggett made a motion to appoint Ms. Ingrassia as the WRVA Representative for the Town of Brookfield, Mr. Kimmel second. Mr. Benson asked for discussion (none): 3-0-0.
Mr. Haggett will obtain Ms. Ingrassia’s e-mail and he will forward information to WRVA about her being the representative.
3. Public Comment – None
4. New Business:
A. Public Safety Advisory Committee
1. Mr. Stowell presented information that the Public Safety PSAC learned regarding Enforceable Weight Limits. (Enforceable Weight Limit Summary)
2. Bridges are assessed by the State periodically and Mr. Peck has information on those limits.
3. Some higher weight vehicles cannot go on some of our roads. The Town will need to determine which weight limits apply to each road, and how are the limits derived.
4. If the roads/bridges are not posted, it cannot be enforced and the Town cannot seek compensation for damage to roads or bridges.
5. Mr. Peck will get the bridges posted (2 signs on each – 1 for each approach). As usual, we hope that sign pilferage is minimal. There is a liability if not posted.
6. It is the Town’s responsibility to post the roads and signs on each end of each road. This will take a lot of signs and expense. The Town will also need to prioritize the process.
7. The signs have to be up before posting road status on the State’s website. Mud Season signs also need to be posted before inclusion on the website.
8. Mud Season is a different situation as the roads can be posted to 16,000 pounds which is different than the normal 24,000 pounds.
9. The Town has no authority to limit agricultural vehicles on roads.
10. Farm traffic on some roads is only for short periods of time and not every day. Mr. Peck and/or the Board could meet with relevant farm operators to discuss speed and weight concerns.
11. Mr. Stowell and Mr. Peck noted that the number of signs for this and other postings is rapidly increasing. When the crew is doing this, they are not working on other Town projects. The Town could consider hiring a contractor for the work; the Town would purchase the signs. Mr. Benson mentioned that it is late to do for this year’s budget, but suggested that PSAC and Mr. Peck work on it and get costs to propose to the voters next year.
12. Mr. Benson suggested that the Crew get the bridges done first and get listed on the State VTrans site.
13. PSAC will develop a list of the signs needed for posting the roads and they will work on getting pricing information from a contractor to install them (weight limit signs).
14. Mr. Benson asked Mr. Peck to have the drivers take an inventory when they are on the roads daily of signs that are missing.
B. Town Meeting Warning
1. Randolph Area Mentoring petition: Mr. Kimmel has the information.
2. A petition is circulating proposing to increase Brookfield Selectboard membership from the current 3 persons to 5 persons. While the Board has not discussed the proposal with the proponents, the Board will review the proposal and confirm the language with the proponents to verify consistency with statutory requirements for articles on the Town Meeting Warning.
3. Mr. Haggett reported that he would not be running for another Board term this year.
1. Ridge Road Paving
Mr. Peck talked with VTrans (paving personnel). The paving company (Pike) did the prior work when it was cold, which apparently contributed to the surface degrading. Mr. Peck discussed the problem with Pike, which has indicated that they would work on a couple of spots.
Mr. Peck wants to figure out what the Town can do legally to get it all fixed correctly. He will speak with Administrative Assistant Kasey Peterson about coordinating with VTrans and determine what the overall cost would be to fix all of it.
2. Loader Quote: Mr. Peck obtained a quote.
3. Lighting at the Town Garage: Mr. Peck will get a pricing estimate from Harmony Electric to replace the lighting, separate from the garage addition. In addition, the pricing might also be submitted to the voters as part of budget discussion during the upcoming 2020 Town Meeting. Mr. Haggett suggested that the Board table the lighting issue for the time being.
4. Certificate of Highway Mileage: this is an annual request from the State. Mr. Kimmel will review the material. Mr. Benson made a motion that once Mr. Kimmel compares it to last year’s version and makes any corrections necessary that he signs it and returns it to VTrans. Mr. Haggett second. Mr. Benson asked for discussion (none): 3-0-0.
5. Other Highway
Truck is all set; the Town would normally vote during Town Meeting, order after, and take delivery in Spring. At this point, the dealers don’t keep an inventory.
Get approval(s) to place an order and pay for next fiscal year, which would secure a place in the fleet in 2020 instead of Spring 2021-2022.
Mr. Kimmel will take the potential truck article out of the warning for the 2020 Town Meeting.
Mr. Peck is hoping to slow down on sand consumption, as they have gone through about ½ the pile so far this year.
D. Budget: the Town Garage (and potential improvements) will be in the budget this year for Town Meeting. Finishing on getting the numbers for the building, etc. Plan to have the cost include a water well/filtration system, as they bring in bottled water now.
E. Town Report Status: Mr. Kimmel is collecting reports and requests to include in this year’s version. Target date is going to be the end of January for the warning, etc. The Board noted that voters will also have an opportunity at Town Meeting to amend budget items up/down during the course of the meeting.
F. 2019 Equalization Study: the Board reviewed the information. The State’s figures are a factor in determining the Town’s tax rates.
5. Old Business:
A. Request by Town of Roxbury to join Mt. Alliance: This was previously approved by the Brookfield Board.
B. Braintree and Randolph are having trouble finding a Zoning Administrator; they arelooking to reach out to Brookfield and have a joint venture. There is a meeting on January 14th, which Mr. Benson will attend. The Town of Brookfield wants to retain Mike Fiorillo as ZA; in comparison to Randolph, we don’t have as much zoning work as they do.
C. Personnel Policy Changes: Mr. Kimmel has more changes to incorporate. Mr. Benson gave a brief summary of the Personnel Policy and why changes are still happening.
D. Approve Minutes of December 9, 2019 meeting: Mr. Benson made a motion to approve the Meeting Minutes of December 9, 2019 with a change for the budgeting of ambulance services, which is up this year compared to last year. Mr. Kimmel second. Mr. Benson asked for discussion (none): 3-0-0.
E. Approve Minutes of December 23, 2019 meeting: Mr. Haggett made a motion to approve the Meeting Minutes of December 23, 2019 with minor typos fixes. Mr. Benson second. Mr. Benson asked for discussion (none): 2-0-0.
6. AP and Payroll Warrants: Mr. Haggett made a motion to pay the warrants totaling $11,100.50 with large bills that include: $4,185.00, American Consulting Engineers (stone road survey); $1,769.82, Cargill, Inc. (salt); $1,306.80, Rouse Tire Sales (tires). Mr. Kimmel second. Mr. Benson asked for discussion (none): 3-0-0.
7. Other Proper Business:
Mr. Larocque asked (on behalf of the Town Auditors) how the budget was coming along. The Board has drafted one and is waiting for 6-month costs from Town Treasurer Teresa Godfrey. Mr. Benson left additional information on her desk tonight and will let the Auditors know when he knows.
8. Mr. Kimmel made a motion to adjourn at 9:07 p.m., Mr. Haggett second: 3-0-0.