May 192021
 

Minutes of the
Meeting of
TOWN OF BROOKFIELD SELECTBOARD
Virtual by Zoom
May 10, 2021
THOSE PRESENT: John Benson, Chair; Dennis LaRocque Board Member, Walt Garner, Karen Schabot, a caller identified only as ‘Richie,’ and a caller that did not identified themself.
A. Call to order: Chair John Benson called the meeting to order at 6:30pm
B. Adjustments to the agenda. NONE
C. Public Comments; Walt Garner and Karen Schabot, hereinafter referred to as the landowners, who live on TH42 discussed their frustration over the Wakefield farms use of TH42 causing damage to their property as the farm is moving cattle to pasture on the farms land off TH42 each spring. The landowners state that the Wakefield’s move their animals on the wettest day each spring and the farm has access to their property from another road and choose to use TH42 instead. They have spoken to Mrs. Alice Wakefield about this and did not get a response. They were told by Scott Wakefield that he is using TH42 so that the road is not “thrown up” by the town. Walt and Karen are seeking some guidance from the select board in how to deal with their issue. Chair Benson offered to speak with the Wakefield’s about this matter and assured them that the town has no interest in throwing up a road and explained the various steps that it would take to legally do this. Chair Benson suggested that the landowners contact the department of Agriculture as the town has no authority when it comes to agricultural use of roads. The landowner would like to pursue having TH42 thrown up by the town and Chair Benson suggested that they draft a letter to the board explaining their reason why the town should do so.
D. Highway Report; Road Foreman Tim Higgins was absent from the meeting however Board member Jeff Kimmel had reported via email that the town road crew is busy grading roads and cleaning brush. They also did some major cleanup at the town garage property coinciding with green up day. The road crew will continue with grading, cleaning culverts and ditching. We are still waiting to meet with GMP about relocating a utility pole at the Town Office before beginning work on improving the parking area.
a. Performance Review – Richard Hamblin. Agreed to move this item to the end of this meeting.
E. New Business; The town received a response from Senator Sanders office in regards to a letter submitted seeking funding under the federal governments proposed infrastructure bill. Chair Benson offered to contact the senator’s office and set up a meeting to discuss the towns needs.
F. Old Business
a. Highway Credit Card. The bank would like an employee’s name on a credit card versus “Highway Department”. Mr LaRocque made a motion to have the card issued in the name of the Road Foreman Tim Higgins. Chair Benson seconded. Motion carried 2-0
b. Richard Doolen – LHMP Mr Doolen was absent
G. Approve minutes from April 26, 2021 Select Board Meeting. There were no minute’s present at the meeting so no action was taken.
H.  Payroll and Warrants. Mr LaRocque made a motion to accept the warrants in the amount of $5,941.70 with the largest amount going to R.E. Tucker for Gavel in the amount of $2,079.00 Mr Benson seconded and motion carried 2-0
I. Other Proper Business.
a.  The board went into executive session at 7:10pm to discuss Richard Hamblin’s performance review and exited the executive session at 7:17
b. Chair Benson reported that he is drafting a report from the select board to be presented at town meeting
J.  Adjournment. Mr. LaRocque made a motion to adjourn the meeting, seconded by chair Benson. Motion carried 2-0
7:21PM

Apr 222021
 

Minutes of the
Meeting of
TOWN OF BROOKFIELD SELECTBOARD
Virtual by Zoom
April 12, 2021
THOSE PRESENT: John Benson, Chair; Jeff Kimmel and Dennis LaRocque, Board Members;
Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman; Kasey Peterson, Administrator; Betty Lord, Secretary.
A. CALL TO ORDER: Chair John Benson called the meeting to order at 6:31 p.m.
B. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA: None
C. PUBLIC COMMENTS: None
D. HIGHWAYS: Mr. Higgins reported the roads are drying out and the Road Crew has been busy grading. He said he had received a lot of compliments on the condition of the roads. He also reported they will soon begin to clean out culverts in getting ready for summer.
Mr. Jeff Baker has requested an access permit for property on Twin Pond Road. It was stated that an agreement had already been made for the permit and it spells out the steps Mr. Baker must perform for construction and maintenance of said access; however, if the request for a permit is for accessing a different location, the permit Mr. Baker now has would have to be modified.
VTrans has asked if the Board wishes to renew its $80,000 contract of which $26,065 has been paid out for work being done on Route 65. The Board asked Mrs. Peterson to: 1) figure the pay rate for the road crew doing the work, 2) modify the contract as necessary, and 3) prepare the contract for renewal for another year.
Mr. LaRocque asked if there was a policy for long-term parking on Town property. While there is no policy in place at the present time, Mr. Higgins was asked to order a sign stating “No Long-Term Parking” to be placed on the public parking lot at the Town Clerk’s Office.
Mr. Higgins asked about the dirt on the aprons of the roads where pavement meets dirt roads. The Board asked Mr. Higgins to compare the price of buying a sweeper versus renting one. He was also asked to contact Mr. Stan Wheatley to see if he has a sweeper and what his rate would be.
Mr. Higgins also asked when the road crew should go back to summer hours of 10 hours a day. Mr. Kimmel made a motion to begin the extended summer hours of 10 hours a day beginning April 26. Mr. Benson seconded the motion which was unanimously approved (3-0-0).
Mr. Higgins was also asked to verify the final numbers for the purchase of a new Town truck, making certain the price will remain within the limits described in the Town Meeting 2021 warning.
E. OLD BUSINESS: Mr. Benson made a motion to accept the proposal of Two Rivers-Ottauquechee Regional Commission for updating Brookfield’s Local Hazard Mitigation Plan. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion carried unanimously (3-0-0). Mrs. Peterson will contact TRORC and let them know the proposal has been signed.
Mr. Kimmel reported the Town Meeting 2021 warning is ready to be posted, which is within the requisite 30 to 40 days prior to Town Meeting day. Mr. Benson made a motion to approve the warning contingent upon Mr. Higgins verifying that the cost of the new Town truck does not exceed $198,000 including financing costs. Mr. Kimmel seconded this motion which was unanimously approved (3-0-0).
A request was made to ask Mrs. Godfrey, Town Clerk, to include in any announcement that everyone attending Town Meeting should wear a mask and bring their own chair.
Mr. LaRocque made a motion to approve the minutes of the March 22 Selectboard meeting as presented. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion unanimously carried (3-0-0).
Mr. Kimmel made a motion to accept the accounts payable in the total amount of $21,592.79 with the highest payment being made to R. E. Tucker Gravel in the amount of $8,694. Mr. Benson seconded the motion which carried unanimously (3-0-0).
F. OTHER BUSINESS: Mr. Dan Mason (Town Constable) reported a dog bite incident. Mr. Kimmel will contact Mr. Mason regarding response steps, including asking the Town Health Officer to review the situation.
Mrs. Peterson will contact VLCT again to ask about coverage for the cost of the damage done at the Ridge Road Cemetery during a December 2020 incident.
Mr. Kimmel will follow up on all license agreements and have copies provided to Mrs. Peterson.
Mr. Benson and Mr. Higgins will meet to discuss options for the public parking lot at the Town Clerk’s Office.
Mr. Benson reported that he had drafted a proposal to request federal funds for Public Works Facility repairs and upgrades in Brookfield, specifically addressing the Town Garage and the Fire Department structures. Mrs. Peterson will review the draft letter, and signed copies will be sent to Senator Leahy, Senator Sanders, Representative Welch, and Governor Scott.
Mr. Benson made a motion to enter into executive session to discuss personnel matters at 7:55 p.m. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion, which passed unanimously (3-0-0).
During this session it was decided to review the budget numbers and discuss the matter of Mr. Higgins’ wages with him before making any changes.
At 8:17 p.m. Mr. Benson made a motion to leave executive session. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which carried unanimously.
There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. Kimmel made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:18 p.m. Mr. LaRocque seconded the motion which carried unanimously (3-0-0).
Respectfully submitted,
Betty Lord, Secretary

Apr 122021
 

Minutes of the
Meeting of
TOWN OF BROOKFIELD SELECTBOARD
Virtual Meeting
March 22, 2021
THOSE PRESENT: John Benson, Chair; Jeff Kimmel, and Dennis LaRocque, Board Members; Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman; Kasey Peterson, Assistant Town Clerk; Betty Lord, Secretary; Lewis Stowell, Public Safety Advisory Committee Chair; Joe Mangan of Kirkland Services, Cem-etery Sexton; and Dan Childs.
A. CALL TO ORDER: Chair John Benson called the meeting to order at 6:33 p.m.
B. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA:
E. NEW BUSINESS:
1. ECFiber Appointments – Mr. Benson made a motion to appoint Mr. Dan Childs as the Brookfield representative of the Town, and Mr. Dan O’Brien as the alternate representative, to ECFiber. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 3-0-0. The Board wishes to thank Mr. Stuart Edson for his many years of service representing the Town with ECFi-ber.
2. LEMP 2021 – Mr. Benson made a motion, which was seconded by Mr. Kimmel, to ac-cept the updated Local Emergency Management Plan for 2021 prepared by Mr. Richard Doolen, Director of Emergency Management for the Town of Brookfield. The motion was unanimously ap-proved: 3-0-0.
3. LHMP 2021 – Mr. Kimmel will coordinate with Two Rivers-Ottauquechee Regional Commission to obtain funding and set up a workgroup to update the Local Hazard Mitigation Plan. Mr. Stowell and Mr. Higgins will also be consulted as to suggested changes or amend-ments for the 2021 version of the LHMP.
F. OLD BUSINESS: Ridge Road Cemetery – Mrs. Peterson reported that VLCT insurance wants to know whether the Town or individual site purchasers own the graves sites and memorial mark-ers, before VLCT would reimburse potential site repairs. It was the consensus of the Board that repair expenses should be covered by the insurance of the person who caused the damage. The Board also concurred that the cemetery bylaws should be adjusted to clarify who has ownership of the memorials and grave sites.
Mr. Stowell, PSAC Chair, asked about the placement of traffic signs within the Town. Mr. Higgins reported that approximately 50 signs had been ordered, as well as the equipment needed to in-stall them, in an amount totaling approximately $6,000.
Mr. Stowell also asked about the status of the Town Office parking lot in Pond Village. Mr. Ben-son said he would be meeting with Mr. Higgins and the parking lot would be put on the list of pro-jects for this coming Summer.
It was also noted that $15,000 was in the 2021-2022 budget for the Orange County Sheriff’s De-partment as recommended by the Public Safety Advisory Committee.
Mr. Stowell was told the status of the traffic ordinance was still pending.
Mr. Benson noted the weight limit signs are up but in order to be legal they must be listed on the state Agency of Transportation website. Mrs. Peterson will begin submitting each road in Town and its weight limit. Mr. LaRocque offered to help with some of the listing.
C. PUBLIC COMMENT – None
D. HIGHWAY:
1. Debit or Credit Card for Fuel – Mr. LaRocque made a motion that a credit card with a limit of $5,000 be obtained for Mr. Higgins, Road Crew Foreman, to be used for the Highway Department purchase of fuel and unforeseen emergencies. Mr. Benson seconded the motion which carried unanimously: (3-0-0). Once the credit card is received, the three debit cards currently used for fuel purchases will be canceled.
2. Grants – There is a VTrans grant being used at the present time for work on Bear Hill Road. The Board will pursue a grant with VTrans for the installment of a culvert or a small bridge on Halfway Brook Road; and with Two Rivers-Ottauquechee Regional Commission for the Local Hazard Mitigation Plan. TRORC will also be asked about potential funding for an erosion hazards grant. There may also be a construction grant available from the Federal Government in 2022.
Mr. Higgins reported he was is looking for another source for sand. Mr. Benson said he and Mr. Higgins had met with Mr. Keith Sprague about using the Sprague sand pit, but after considera-tion, Mr. Sprague withdrew from negotiations as he concluded that he will need the resource for his farm in the future.
E. NEW BUSINESS – See Above
F. OLD BUSINESS – See Above
G. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF MARCH 8, 2021: Mr. LaRocque moved to accept the minutes as presented. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which was passed unanimously: 3-0-0.
H. PAYROLL AND AP WARRANTS: Mr. LaRocque made a motion to approve the warrants in the total amount of $13,544.34 with the highest amount being paid to NEMRC in the amount of $4,637.72. Mr Kimmel seconded the motion which carried unanimously: 3-0-0.
I. OTHER PROPER BUSINESS – None
J. ADJOURNMENT: There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. LaRocque made a motion to adjourn at 7:53 p.m.; Mr. Benson seconded and the motion was carried unani-mously: 3-0-0.
Respectfully submitted,
Betty Lord, Secretary

Mar 152021
 

Minutes of the
Meeting of
TOWN OF BROOKFIELD
SELECTBOARD
by Zoom and Telephone Conferencing
March 8, 2021
THOSE PRESENT: John Benson, Chair; Jeff Kimmel and Dennis LaRocque, Selectmen; Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman; Kasey Peterson, Assistant Town Clerk; Betty Lord, Secretary; and Lewis Stowell.
A. CALL TO ORDER: The Chair, John Benson called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m.
B. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA: None
C. PUBLIC COMMENTS: None
D. HIGHWAYS – Mr. Benson reported the Board had received a letter from VTrans asking if the Town would be making any requests for grants for the year 2021. The Board asked Mr. Higgins and Mrs. Peterson to pursue a grant proposal with VTrans to cover the cost of repairing or replacing a damaged culvert on Halfway Brook Road.
The Town has received a letter from the State to be posted in at least two public places regarding weight limits on roads, i.e.: 15,000 lbs for 2 axle units, 18,000 lbs for 3 axle units, and 20,000 lbs. for tractor/trailer units. The Town will post the roads and the postings will be listed on the State website. Mr. Higgins said the signs had just been received from the State and would be posted the following day.
Mr. Stowell asked what work was planned for Twin Pond Road this spring and summer. Mr. Higgins stated that they would be stone lining some the ditches for water control and work would be done on some of the culverts.
Mr Benson reported that all the information has been gathered on the costs of sand ($2 a yard) and hauling ($2 a yard) and he would be setting up a time during the coming week for Mr. Hig-gins and him to meet with Mr. Keith Sprague to discuss a possible contract with Sprague’s sand pit.
E. NEW BUSINESS: None.
F. OLD BUSINESS: The Cemetery maintenance contract and the contract for sexton made with Mr. Joe Mangan of Kirkland Services are ready for signing by members of the Board. Mrs. Peter-son will be the witness. The contracts are being extended for an additional year.
Mrs. Peterson reported that she had contacted VLCT Insurance about covering the repairs to be made at the Brookfield cemetery on Ridge Road. She was assured that as long as the Town had pictures of the damage done to the stones and fencing, the repair work could commence and the costs would be covered.
G. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES: Mr, LaRocque asked that the draft minutes be amended in Article D, Paragraph 3, from “will contact Mr. Gilman” to “asked Mr. Higgins to contact Mr. Gil-man”. Mr. LaRocque made a motion to accept the minutes as amended, Mr. Kimmel seconded, and the motion carried: 3-0-0.
H. PAYROLL AND WARRANTS: Mr. LaRocque made a motion to accept the warrants in the total amount of $2,072.38 with the highest amount paid being $602.12 payable to NEMRC. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which passed unanimously: 3-0-0.
I. OTHER BUSINESS – Mr.Kimmel reported to the Board that Mrs. Lord will be away but as long as the meetings are held on Zoom she will be able to continue to take the minutes. It was agreed that as long as the minutes could be done efficiently by this method, Mrs. Lord would continue to take the minutes. If this does not prove to be satisfactory, other arrangements will be made.
There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. Kimmel made a motion to adjourn at 7:07 p.m., Mr. LaRocque seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 3-0-0.
Respectfully submitted,
Betty Lord, Secretary

Mar 012021
 

Minutes of the
Meeting of
TOWN OF BROOKFIELD
SELECTBOARD
by Zoom and Telephone Conferencing
February 22, 2021
THOSE PRESENT: John Benson, Chair; Jeff Kimmel, and Dennis LaRocque, Selectmen; Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman; Kasey Peterson, Administrative Assistant; Betty Lord, Secretary; and Christina Harlow and Richard Doolan.
A. CALL TO ORDER: Chair John Benson called the meeting to order at 6:32 p.m.
B. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA: Mrs. Christina Harlow was present at the meeting to of-fer her services as a candidate for an open position on the Town Planning Commission. Mr. Kimmel made a motion to appoint Mrs. Harlow to the Commission. Mr. Benson seconded the mo-tion and asked Mrs. Harlow to tell the Board something about herself. She stated that she had lived in Brookfield for 6.5 years, had two young children (one in the Brookfield Elementary School and another soon to follow) and that she had a desire to be involved in Town activities. Mr. Ben-son called for a vote on the motion on the floor and it was passed unanimously: 3-0-0.
Mr. Richard Doolan, Director of Emergency Management for Brookfield, came to discuss the sta-tus of the Town Hazard Mitigation Plan and the related Local Emergency Management Plan. It was agreed the topic would be put on the agenda for the next Selectboard meeting of March 8, 2021. Mr. Kimmel will represent the Board in discussion with Two Rivers-Ottauquechee Regional Commission while working on plans. Other personnel that should be included in developing the plan are an officer from the Fire Department, the Road Crew Foreman, and Mrs. Peterson will contact the Planning Commission to ask which of their board members would like to be involved. Mr. Doolan reported a generator had been installed at the Brookfield Elementary School and, alt-hough plans have not been completed due to the pandemic, the school could be opened up as needed on a storm-by-storm basis.
C. PUBLIC COMMENTS: None
D. HIGHWAYS: Mr. Benson reported that information regarding the price of sand, loading, and hauling had been received and a meeting will now be set up with Mr. Keith Sprague regarding the proposed Sprague Sand Pit and the feasibility of a contract with the Town for the purchase of sand.
Mr. Benson talked with Northfield Savings Bank to discuss a loan for the financing of a new truck for the Town. He is waiting for the figures for financing for two years at the commercial rate.
Mr Larocque will contact Mr. Gilman at W. B. Rogers to ask how many years remain for providing sand from his pit.
Mr. Benson pointed out the new truck cannot be ordered until after Town Meeting of May 22, 2021.
E. NEW BUSINESS
1. Ira Day Historic Sign: the Board was asked by the State and petitioner Joshua Blouin to ap-prove the wording on a historical sign honoring Major Ira Day to be placed on Route 14 in the Brookfield/Williamstown section; and to provide notice of approval by providing a copy of the relevant Brookfield Selectboard meeting minutes to the State and petitioner. Mr. Kimmel read the proposed wording to the Board, a copy of which is attached and made a part of these minutes. Mr. LaRocque made a motion to approve the proposed wording for the Major Ira Day historical marker as of February 22, 2021, and that a copy of the minutes be sent (as indicated above); Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion passed unanimously: 3-0-0.
2. Cemetery RFP – Mr. Benson made a motion to extend the maintenance contract for Town cemeteries for another year to Mr. Joseph Mangan of Kirkland Services, LLC.; Mr. LaRocque se-conded the motion which was unanimously passed: 3-0-0.
Mr. Benson made a motion to extend the yearly contract to Mr. Mangan as Town Cemetery Sex-ton for another year; Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion was unanimously passed: 3-0-0.
3. Roadside Mowing – Mr. Higgins was asked by the Board to contact Mr. Brandon Stephens of Total Lawn Care to ascertain costs and scheduling for roadside moving for the coming summer.
4. Planning Commission Appointment – Christina Harlow (see above).
5. Public WiFi Equipment Grant – The Board agreed that ECFiber was doing a good job of providing WiFi coverage in Brookfield and there appeared to be little interest in additional public WiFi at this time. Currently the Town Library in Pond Village provides public access.
6. Lister Certificates – Members of the Board signed the Lister Certificates. Mr. LaRocque made a motion to accept the Lister Certificates for the years 2018, 2019, and 2020; Mr. Kimmel se-conded and the motion was unanimously approved: 3-0-0.
7. NEMRC Contracts – Mr. Benson made a motion to renew the annual financial software con-tract with NEMRC. Mr. LaRocque seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 3-0-0. Mr Benson signed the contract on behalf of the Selectboard.
8. Certificate of Deposit Renewal – Mr. LaRocque made a motion to allow the certificate of deposit with Northfield Savings Bank coming due on February 25, 2021 to roll over for automatic renewal for an additional year; Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 3-0-0.
F. OLD BUSINESS
Cemetery Repairs – Mrs. Peterson reported that Kirkyard Services and Custom Manufacturing of Quality Memorials are ready to start repair/replacement work on the memorial stones that were damaged in the Ridge Road Cemetery when a car went off the road. Mr. LaRocque made a mo-tion to authorize the two companies to begin work with the proviso that VLCT Insurance verifies that there are no risks in beginning the work and that VLCT (and/or the vehicle driver’s insurer) are willing to reimburse once the work is completed; Mr. Benson seconded the motion which was carried unanimously: 3-0-0.
G. APPROVAL OF MINUTES of February 8, 2021 MEETING – Mr. Kimmel moved that the minutes of the meeting of February 8, 2021 be approved as presented; Mr. LaRocque seconded, and the minutes were unanimously approved: 3-0-0.
H. PAYROLL AND WARRANTS – Mr. LaRocque moved to accept the warrants in the total amount of $31,181.70 with the highest payment being $15, 378.35 payable to Evans Group for diesel oil. Mr. Benson seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 3-0-0.
I OTHER PROPER BUSINESS:
1. Variances – Mr. LaRocque reported that all three outstanding requests for variances before the Board of Adjustment had been settled in favor of the applicants.
2. Car Parked in Town Office Parking Lot – Mrs. Peterson was asked to draft a letter to Mr. Ed Koren asking that he find another place to park his son’s car as it was disrupting the plowing of the Town Office’s parking lot; and to send a copy of the letter to the Selectboard for review.
3. License Agreements – Mr. Kimmel reported that all the license agreements for utility crossings on Old Cross Road, East Street, and Bear Hill Road had been signed, with the exception of the Taplin work on West Street. Mr. Benson asked Mr. Higgins to check on a source for stakes or other appropriate markings to warn of utility crossings.
There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. LaRocque made a motion to ad-journ. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion and the meeting was adjourned at 7:44 p.m.: 3-0-0.
Respectfully submitted,
Betty Lord, Secretary

Feb 172021
 

Minutes of the
Meeting of
TOWN OF BROOKFIELD
SELECTBOARD
by Zoom and Telephone Conferencing
February 8, 2021
THOSE PRESENT: John Benson, Chair; Jeff Kimmel and Dennis LaRocque, Selectmen; Tim Higgins, Road Foreman; Kasey Peterson, Assistant Town Clerk; Betty Lord, Secretary; and Da-vid Pattison, Elizabeth Templeton, Chelsea and Keith Sprague, Alexis McLean, Kevin and Marie Dunwoody, Matt Denzen, Jon Binhammer, Jim Merriam, Pamela Krausz, Dan O’Brien, Curtis Koren, Gary Lord, and Kym Anderson, Town Residents.
A. CALL TO ORDER: The Chair, John Benson called the meeting to order at 6:34 p.m.
B. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA: As many Town residents were present to discuss the solar array proposed for the Sprague property off of the Ridge Road, Item F1 Solar Project was moved forward on the agenda.
Mr. Benson stated that at the last Selectboard meeting of January 25, 2021, Mr. Merriam of Nor-wich Solar Technologies had been asked to report back to the Board how the placement of the solar array complied with the Town Plan and how the site was selected.
Mr. Merriam reported that he was meeting with the Town Planning Commission the following evening (February 9, 2021) and he would report back to the Selectboard following that meeting. Mr. Benson then asked the community members if they had anything to say regarding the issue.
There was much discussion by the attending members of the community (most being residents whose land abuts the said solar array site). One of the concerns raised was the number of panels that would be in the array. Some of the residents wanted to know why the land had been deemed a “preferred” site by the applicant. Other topics at issue were the aesthetics, and putting the array in an area that had primarily been used for residential and agricultural use.
Mrs. Dunwoody asked if the neighbors were so opposed to the project, why was it was still on the table? Could the array be placed in a better location? Mrs. Krausz asked to whom the residents’ concerns should be addressed and she said they must be done right in order to benefit the com-munity interests.
Mr. Benson said the Selectboard does not have the authority to approved or disapprove a Section 248 process before the Public Service Board and the only issue for the Selectboard is whether the land is a “preferred” site. The Selectboard is only asked to sign a letter stating that site is in keeping with the Town Plan. He says he has no intention of signing the letter until he receives a report from the Planning Commission stating the site is in compliance with the Town Plan.
Mr. Dunwoody stated he had information regarding the site and will email to anyone who requests it before the Planning Commission Board meeting the following evening at 7:00 p.m.
C: PUBLIC COMMENTS: None
D. HIGHWAYS
l. Excess Weight – Mr. Higgins and Mrs. Peterson reported they had reviewed the suggestions from the Public Safety Committee but found that the process Brookfield is using to grant permits is already in compliance with state law. An inventory will be taken of bridges and culverts in Town, but to-date all are in compliance.
2. Bear Hill Culvert Grant Amendment – Mr. Benson will sign the amendment for the Board and Mrs. Peterson will contact VTrans and remind them that the timing for completion is dependent on them submitting a design of the culvert so it can be constructed this summer.
Mr. Higgins related to Mr. Keith Sprague that the Board is still in the process of going over pricing and a meeting will be set up soon to talk about the Sprague sand pit.
Mr. Higgins reported that W. B. Rogers will sell the Town sand at $12.50 per yard with the Town screening, loading, and hauling it. Mr. Rogers could provide samples in the spring.
Mr. Higgins also reported that a new AWD Freightliner truck with a belly scraper, back-up grader, radio, heater, and plow wing would be $188,242 (with a trade-in).
The Road Crew will have every road completely plowed throughout the Town by the end of the week.
A letter has been sent to Mr. Larry Brassard notifying him that his mailbox protrudes into the road.
All speed and excess weight signs to be installed on Northfield Road in the Spring have been or-dered.
E; NEW BUSINESS
Audit Contract – The Board reviewed the Audit Contract and will request a clarification regard-ing the Town paying for the audit in installments. Mr. Benson made a motion to authorize Mr. Kimmel to confer with Mrs. Godfrey, Town Clerk, to confirm terms, and allowing Mr. Kimmel to able to sign on behalf of the Board and to have the audit contract revised. Mr. LaRocque seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 3-0-0.
F. OLD BUSINESS
1. Solar Project – See Above
2. Town Meeting Date and Location – Mr. Benson reported the Brookfield Elementary School Principal had agreed to allow the Town Meeting to be held on the school ballfields on Saturday, May 22 at 10:00 a.m. Mr. LaRocque stated he would contact Mr. Perry Armstrong of Rain or Shine Tent Company to discuss the costs of tents. The best scenario would be a large tent to cover all those attending the meeting, but if the cost is prohibitive, then the tent should at least cover the voting booth area.
The printed draft of the Town Report should be ready in March and the warning printed and post-ed by April 10, 2021.
G. APPROVAL OF MINUTES of JANUARY 25, 2021 MEETING – Mr. LaRocque said that he was not included in the group who would be going to talk with Mr. Sprague about the sand pit and asked that the minutes be adjusted. Mr. LaRocque made a motion to accept the minutes as amended in Item 3, paragraph 2. Mr. Kimmel seconded, and the minutes were unanimously ap-proved.
H. PAYROLL AND WARRANTS – Mr. LaRocque moved to accept the warrants in the total amount of $50,009.63 with the highest payment being $38,220.89 payable to Orange County Treasurer. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which was unanimously approved: 3-0-0.
BUDGET – Mr. Benson said the budget would be for seven months instead of six months and as soon as he had the figures for the price of sand and the pricing from Northfield Savings Bank for financing the loan of the truck, he would have a final draft and would send it out to the other Se-lectboard members to peruse.
There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. Kimmel made a motion to adjourn. Mr. LaRocque seconded the motion and the meeting was adjourned at 8:03 p.m.: 3-0-0.
Respectfully submitted,
Betty Lord, Secretary

Feb 022021
 

Minutes of the
Meeting of
TOWN OF BROOKFIELD
SELECTBOARD
January 25, 2021
Meeting conducted by Zoom
THOSE PRESENT: John Benson, Chair; Jeff Kimmel, and Dennis LaRocque, Board members; Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman; Kasey Peterson, Assistant Town Clerk; and Betty Lord, Sec-retary
A. Call to Order: The Chair, John Benson called the meeting to order at 6:34 p.m.
B. Adjustments to the Agenda: None
C. Public Comments: None
D. Highway
1. Certificate of Highway Mileage: Mr. Benson and Mr. Kimmel signed the Certificate, which will also be signed by the Town Clerk and forwarded to the VT Agency of Transportation for review and approval.
2. Excess Weight: the Public Safety Advisory Committee (Lew Stowell, Chair) provided a set of recommendations regarding Town procedures for processing requests for excess weight permits for large vehicles, based on a tiered system of weights. The Town Administrative Assistant would be the initial contact person; the Road Crew Foreman and/or Road Commissioner would also be consulted when circumstances warrant. PSAC is also reviewing the Town’s Traffic Ordinance, and has recommended several changes be made by putting up yield signs and MPH signs on various roads in Town.
3. Other Highway Business: Mr. Higgins stated that the Road Crew had been busy plowing and sanding following the recent snow storms. He is still waiting for a couple of return calls regarding the price of a truck chassis.
Mr. Benson, Mr. LaRocque and Mr. Sprague will talk with Mr. Keith Sprague regarding the price of sand from the proposed Sprague sand pit and will be discussing a contract.
Mr. Higgins further stated that Stan Wheatley will be willing to work with the Town once a contract is worked out with the Spragues.
E. New Business
1. SWIP Representative
Mr. Benson made a motion to appoint Mr. Kimmel as the SWIP Representative on a temporary basis. Mr. LaRocque seconded the motion which carried unanimously. 3-0-0
F. Old Business
1. Budget and Town Meeting
Mr. Benson reported that with the exception of the price of sand and the trucks for the garage, the budget is almost complete and a draft copy has been sent to Mr. Kimmel and Mr. LaRocque for their perusal and comments.
a. Ballot mailing – Voting will take place at the Town Meeting but those voters who wish to do so, may request an absentee ballot from the office of the Town Clerk.
b. Town Meeting – Mr. Benson made a motion that the Town Meeting for 2021 be moved from the first Tuesday in March to Saturday, May 22 commencing at 10:00 a.m. with the location to be announced at a later date. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion carried unanimously. 3-0-0.
2. Upgrade to Town Office Lighting – A clarification was made that replacing the lights in the Town Office would also include replacing the lights in the vault. Mrs. Peterson will notify Harmony Electric to change the lights in the vault was well as the lights in the office space.
G. Approval of Selectboard Minutes of January 11, 2021.
Mr. LaRocque made a motion to approve the minutes of January 11, 2021 as read. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the minutes were unanimously approved. 3-0-0.
H. Payroll and AP Warrants
Mr. LaRocque made a motion to accept the Accounts Payable in the amount of $13,346.88 with the highest payment in the amount of $4,637.72 payable to MVP Healthcare.
There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. Kimmel made a motion to adjourn, Mr. LaRocque seconded, and the meeting was adjourned at 7:30 p.m.
Respectfully submitted,
Betty Lord,
Secretary to the Board

Jan 192021
 

TOWN OF BROOKFIELD
Selectboard Meeting
Held by Zoom
11 January 2021 at 6:30 PM
Those present: John Benson, Chair; (telephone conferencing) Dennis LaRocque, Board Member; Jeff Kimmel, Board Member; Kasey Peterson, Assistant Town Clerk; Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman, Betty Lord, Secretary; Jim Merriam, Kevin and Marie Dunwoody, Jose´ Luzardo, Gwynn Zakov (Brookfield Planning Commission Chair), Timothy Kirsher, Chris LaPointe, Scott Brock, Shawn Krisch, Wayne Fontanella, Will White, Zoe Newmarco, Jon Binhammer, Nancy Jacques, Don Dobeck, and Wayne Meginnes.
A. Call to Order: The meeting was called to order by Chair John Benson at 6:41 p.m.
B. Adjustments to the Agenda
Mr. Benson acknowledged there were quite a number of people present who wished to speak to the Solar installation issue, as well as to the zoning requests, and the agenda was adjusted accordingly.
Sprague Sand Pit: Chris LaPointe asked for a clarification of where the Sprague sand pit is located. Mr. Benson stated the site is along Route 14, on the west side of the valley across from the Woodruff residence. Mr. Benson further stated the Town needed a source for winter sand as the source that is presently being used is only adequate for perhaps one more year. If terms can be reached with the Spragues, indications are the new site could be used for 15 to 20 years. As the sand is taken, the topsoil would be replaced on the site making the land available for agricultural use again.
Solar Array: Mr. Benson explained that Mr. Merriam of Norwich Solar Technologies attended the last Board meeting by Zoom to ask that the Chair of the Board, along with the Chair of the Planning Commission, sign a letter to the Public Service Board of Vermont in which the proposed site for a solar array on the old Smith Farm (on the Ridge Road), presently owned by Sprague Farms, be “deemed preferred.” Questions ensued by members of the community and especially those who own properties that abut the proposed project land.
Mr. Merriam was informed that at least four landowners whose properties abut the Sprague land have not been notified of the proposed plan. It was also pointed out that solar arrays should not affect historic sites and the land to be used abuts the property of the Marvin Newton House, owned and operated by the Brookfield Historical Society, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Sites.
It was also pointed out that in 2017 the Two Rivers-Ottaquechee Regional Commission prepared an Energy Plans Packet with a map of potential solar sites and the property in question did not appear on that map for the Town of Brookfield.
There was some question of whether or not approving the property as a “deemed preferred site” would be binding for the Town, or whether changes could be made subsequently, such as a vote “no” on the project, after these letters had been submitted.
Kevin and Marie Dunwoody expressed concerns as owners of property which would abut the solar array; i.e., the effect on property values, the land has been designated for residential and agricultural use, and with the panels being 10 feet high the array will be seen from the road and a deterrent to the view and the beauty of the landscape. Mr. Dunwoody further commented the project would “benefit a few people and affect many people.”
When asked about the need to have the letters to the Public Service Board by February 2, Mr. Merriam explained that new guidelines would go into effect on all applications filed after that date, so that the fee for filing a full application would increase by 15%. Up until February 2, the cost of filling a complete application is $30,000. These points will be further discussed on January 12 at 7:00 p.m. at the Planning Commission Meeting.
Zoning Requests: Mr. Kimmel stated there were three cases awaiting decisions on requests for variances: (1) Mr. Krisch is requesting a variance on a three-acre lot to build a camp. The minimum required acreage in that zoning district is five acres; (2) Mr. Schmechel is requesting the building of a handicap access ramp from a porch that will be 25 ft from the road instead of the required 65 ft, and (3) Mr. Brock is requesting to build a shed which will be less than the minimum 50 ft from the property boundary.
Discussion ensued in which a request was made that a better process be put into place to handle these variance requests in a timely manner and that the names and email addresses of the members of the Selectboard, Board of Adjustment, and the Planning Commission be put on the Town website so that if there is no response from one member, another member could be contacted.
Mr. LaRocque made a motion to consider the three requests for variances to be deemed approved due to the amount of time that had transpired since the requests were made. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion.
The question arose as to whether the Selectboard had the authority to move that the request be “deemed approved.” After discussion, Mr. LaRocque withdrew his motion and the Board will refer this issue to the Town’s attorney for further information.
C. PUBLIC COMMENT: See above.
D. HIGHWAY
1. Gravel Pit: Mr. Higgins, Road Foreman, said the southern bridge across from the Woodruff driveway would be the best of two bridges to use to get into the gravel pit. He stated it would need to be widened and reinforced by another piece of steel.
Mr. Benson asked Mr. Higgins to give him further information about what the costs would be for buying sand on the open market. Mr. Higgins said that the Hebert operation would charge $6.00 a yard if the Town does the hauling. Mr. Higgins was also asked to call other vendors to get additional comparative pricing.
Mr. Higgins reported that Mr. Larry Brassard had contacted him about a post that had been knocked down in front of his house. The Town installed a new post off the travel way. Said post has now been moved into the travel way. Mrs. Peterson was asked to send a letter to Mr. Brassard asking him to move the post back out of the travel way. A copy of the letter is to be sent to the Town’s attorney.
With regard to people clearing snow out onto the road, Mr Kimmel will contact the Town’s attorney about the issue and Mr. Higgins will contact VTrans to see what action can be taken by the Town.
Mr. Higgins stated that a road signs inventory had been taken at the Town Garage. He has also talked with someone at WorkSafe about ordering Weight Limit signs for Northfield Road.
2. Certificate of Highway Mileage: Mr. Kimmel will review and confer with Mr. Higgins. Initial conclusion is that no changes have been made to road classifications during the past year.
E. NEW BUSINESS
1. Zoning requests: See above.
F. OLD BUSINESS
1. Solar Project: See above.
2. Budget and Town Meeting: Mr. Benson reported that he had updated the budget with all information received and had sent a copy to the Selectboard members.
There has been no final action yet by the legislature giving towns the option of changing the date of their Town Meetings to a later time in the year due to COVID-19 concerns. If permitted, Brookfield’s Town Meeting could potentially be moved to sometime in May.
Mr. Benson made a motion to hire Harmony Electric for $1,900 to upgrade the lighting in the Town Clerk’s office. Mr. Kimmel seconded and the motion was carried unanimously: 3-0-0. Mrs. Peterson will contact Harmony Electric to schedule the work.
G. APPROVE MINUTES OF 28 DECEMBER MEETING
Mr. Kimmel made a motion to accept the minutes as presented. Mr. Benson seconded the motion, which carried unanimously: 3-0-0.
H. PAYROLL AND AP WARRANTS
Mr. LaRocque made a motion to accept the accounts payable/warrants in the amount of $16,131.43 with the largest amount being paid to Conniff’s Custom Builders in the amount of $9,000. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion, which carried unanimously: 3-0-0.
I. OTHER BUSINESS
Mr. Richard Cox notified the Board that he would be doing a heavy cut.
ADJOURNMENT
There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. LaRocque made a motion to adjourn. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion, which was unanimously approved (3-0-0) and the meeting was adjourned at 9:18 p.m.

Jan 042021
 

TOWN OF BROOKFIELD
Selectboard Meeting
Held by Zoom
28 December 2020 at 6:30 PM
Those present: John Benson, Chair (by telephone); Dennis LaRocque, Board Member; and Jeff Kimmel, Board Member; Kasey Peterson, Assistant Town Clerk; Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman, Betty Lord, Secretary; Jim Merriam (all by Zoom) and Lew Stowell (by telephone).
A. Call to Order: the meeting was called to order by the Chair, Mr. Benson, at 6:30 pm.
B. Adjustments to Agenda – None
C. Public Comments – None
D. Highway
1. Internet Access at Town Garage
Ms. Peterson reported that she had looked into the internet problem at the Town garage and felt it was not a problem of speed but rather of distance. She felt the problem could be corrected by buying a small booster box which would make the service available around the garage property. Mr. Benson made a motion to allow Ms. Peterson to purchase a booster box for the Town Garage up to the amount of $50. Mr. LaRocque seconded and the motion was unanimously approved. 3-0-0.
Mr Higgins reported that he had talked with a couple of companies regarding the purchase of a new truck and was expecting to have pricing by the end of the week. Mr. Higgins was asked to provide the figures to the members the Board as soon as they are available.
Mr Higgins also related to the Board that Larry Hebert may not have enough sand for the Town’s use and if he found that he did have enough, the price would be increased by 25 cents per yard. Mr. Higgins was asked to check other sources and get their pricing for 5,000 to 6,000 yards of sand for the coming winter. He was also asked to contact Mr. Doug Haggett and see what he is charging for sand by the yard although Mr. Haggett’s sand pit is approved under Act 250 which limits the amount of sand that he can remove at any one time.
Mr Higgins reported that he had been getting pricing for stripping top soil on the Sprague property relating to the proposed sand pit project.
Mr. Kimmel asked about a nearby cherry tree that Mr. Bill Grady wishes to have removed that is across from his property. Mr. Higgins said he had talked with the landowner of the property on which the tree is located, who agreed with the Town taking whatever action is needed. Mr Higgins reported that the tree is in a precarious position and would require a professional tree company to remove it rather than having the Town Road Crew remove it. Mr. Benson said there is a line item in the budget for professional tree removal and there is a history of having done so before.
E. New Business
1. Public Safety Advisory Committee
a. FY 2022 Contract with Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD)
Mr. Lew Stowell met with the Board (by telephone) and spoke for the Public Safety Advisory Committee. Mr. Stowell presented a proposal from Orange County Sheriff Bohnyak regarding the contract with OCSD for patrolling in the Town of Brookfield. The Board reviewed the report and asked Mr. Stowell to contact OCSD and ask them to prepare a contract to be signed by the Board as follows:
Contract $15,000 annual: $49.00 per hour, 306 hours per year.
January, February, March, October, November, December: 17 hours per month.
April, May, June, July, August, September: 34 hours per month.
b. Town Over-Weight and Over-Sized Vehicles Signage/Permitting Project
Mr. Stowell was asked to prepare a draft outline of the proposal for changes of speed limit signs and Over-Weight and Over-Sized vehicle signage to be placed on Northfield Road. The information would be included in the next meeting agenda; anyone who wishes may join the Board Meeting by telephone conferencing or Zoom. There are five signs that will need to be installed by mud season of 2021. The Town will order the signs to have them ready for installation in the spring. The Board gave Mr. Higgins the authority to buy the equipment needed to install the signs.
c. Inter-Departmental and Committee Protocol Request
Mr. Stowell asked for clarification on whom PSAC members should contact when questions arise regarding the various areas of the Town’s business. The Board instructed the Committee to contact the person who would be most capable of answering the questions, i.e.: if questions occur regarding the roads, Mr. Higgins should be contacted. If Committee members are unsure as to whom they should direct their questions, Mr. Kimmel can be contacted to either answer their questions or direct them to the proper source.
d. Traffic Ordinance Final Review
Mr. Stowell reported that a final draft of the proposed traffic ordinance amendments will be presented to the Selectboard at the meeting of January 25, 2021. Mr. Benson stated that all changes to the ordinance must be warned and a public hearing held before any changes can be approved. A summary of the proposed changes will be posted in three places in Town as well in the Randolph Herald and on Front Porch Forum. The draft ordinance will include the highlighted changes in the document. It was requested that the proposed changes be sent to the members of the Selectboard at least two days before the meeting to allow time for the Selectmen to become familiar with the material. Mr. Higgins agreed to send any comments he may have to Mr. Stowell.
Mr. Kimmel, Mr. LaRocque, and Mr. Higgins will attend the next PSAC meeting on January 20, 2021. Ms. Peterson will set up Zoom training for anyone on the committee who needs help, and she will post the meeting on Zoom.
2. Solar Project on Ridge Road
Mr. Jim Merriam of Norwich Technologies came before the Board (by Zoom) to present information regarding a solar project being proposed by Sprague Farms on the old Smith property on Ridge Road. He asked that a letter be signed by the Chair of the Selectboard and the Chair of the Planning Commission to the Public Service Board of Vermont in which the site is “deemed preferred.” Mr. Benson said that the members of the Selectboard will review the proposal by the January 11, 2021 meeting and if finding the proposal in keeping with all Town rules and regulations, it will be signed and if not further information will be requested.
3. Mapping Contract with Cartographic Associates
This new contract was proposed by Mr. Stuart Edson at the Board Meeting on December 14. The proposal was reviewed by the Board and Mr. Benson signed the contract on behalf of the Town.
F. Old Business
1. Budget
Mr. Benson asked Mr. Higgins to get him the pricing on the proposed new Town Highway Department truck as soon as possible for the new budget. The on-going reappraisal costs will be split into two years. As the Town financial audit was limited this year, $9,500 will be paid at the end of the fiscal year and $18,000 will be budgeted for next year with an in-depth audit.
2. Town Meeting
The Board did not take any action as the Legislature will not be meeting until early January when they will vote on whether to allow towns to move Town Meeting Day due to COVID-19 precautions, along with the procedures for doing so.
G. Approval of Minutes from 14 December 2020 Board Meeting
In reviewing the minutes, Mr. LaRocque said he did not remember being asked by Mr. Benson to check the Traffic Ordinance to ascertain which roads need to be warned. There being no objection, the line was struck from the minutes. Mr. Kimmel made a motion to accept the minutes as presented with one correction. Mr. Benson seconded the motion which carried unanimously. 3-0-0.
H. Mr. LaRocque made a motion to accept the Accounts Payable report with a total of $10,075.88 and the highest payment being made to White River Valley Ambulance Service of $3,425.00 as presented. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which carried unanimously. 3-0-0.
I. Other Proper Business
Mr. Benson advised that several requests for zoning permit variances should be considered for “deemed approval” based on extensive delays in processing the requests. Mr. Kimmel will follow up with the applicants (Krisch, Schmeckel, and Brock).
J. Adjournment: there being no further business to come before the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 8:15 p.m.
Respectfully submitted,
Betty T. Lord
Secretary

Dec 282020
 

TOWN OF BROOKFIELD
Selectboard Meeting
Held by Zoom
14 December 2020 at 6:30 PM
Those present: John Benson, Chair – by telephone conferencing, and Jeff Kimmel, Board Mem-ber; Dennis LaRocque, Board Member; Kasey Peterson, Assistant Town Clerk; Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman, Betty Lord, Secretary; with Greg Wight, Town Moderator; Shawn Krisch, Alyce Brouillard, Dan Childs (all by Zoom) and Stuart Edson by telephone conferencing.
A. Call to Order: The meeting was called to order by the Chair, Mr. Benson, at 6:30 p.m.
B. Adjustments to Agenda
As there were those waiting to make presentations to the Board, the Agenda was adjusted as folows:
D. 2. Mapping Proposal- Cartographic Associates—
Mr. Stuart Edson suggested changing mapping companies from Avatar/Terra Map to Cartograph-ic Associates. He said he had met with the owner of Cartographic Associates, Mr. Franco Rossi, and was impressed with what he was told. After the initial set-up cost of $5,350, which can be paid out of the reappraisal monies provided by the state (Mr. Edson will verify this with Barbara Schinger of PVR, the state advisor to Town Listers) and following this initial set-up/conversion of data cost, the budget for the April 1, 2021 update cycle would be $2,800, followed by $1,500 an-nually for the April 1, 2022 and April 1, 2023 updates. Mr. Edson proposed increasing the annual budgeted amounts accordingly, and would provide a new set of maps for the Town by April 2021.
Mr. Kimmel made a motion to use the monies in the reappraisal budget to pay for the set-up/conversion costs to work with Cartographic Associates and to raise the amount annually budgeted for mapping costs from $1,500 to $2,800 a year (as described above). Mr. LaRocque seconded and the motion carried unanimously. 3-0-0.
C. Public Comment
Mr. Dan Childs made a request to the Board to add the name of Dan O’Brien as a second repre-sentative to ECFiber for the Town of Brookfield. At present there is only one other alternate. Mr. Benson made a motion to add Mr. O’Brien as an alternate for ECFiber for the Town of Brookfield. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion which carried unanimously. 3-0-0.
Mr. Benson also asked Mr. Childs to provide him with a budget proposal for the Brookfield Public Library for the upcoming year. Mr. Childs agreed.
Mr. Shawn Krisch spoke to the Board asking why his request for a variance is taking so long. He stated that he had first applied for the variance on September 9 as the property on which he wants to build a camp is three acres instead of five acres. He pointed out that the current property owner had missed a tax opportunity by not closing on the property before the end of the year. The owner, Alyce Brouillard, was also present by Zoom to discuss her concerns about the time that it has taken to bring this variance request to fruition. Mr. Krisch stated that he had received a notice of meeting for January 4 at 6:30 p..m and that he would be ready and present for that meeting.
D. 3 – Town Meeting Guidelines
Mr. Greg Wight, Town Moderator, appeared by Zoom to discuss whether or not Town Meeting 2021 should be moved out from its regular meeting day on the first Tuesday in March. While the Vermont legislature has not yet authorized moving Town Meeting dates, it is reasonably certain that due to COVID-19 restrictions, it will be left to the Town to decide on the date of the meeting. Mr. Benson said that moving the meeting date out would not affect the financial year as the new budget would not come into effect until the first of July. He also stated that by May the chances of having the meeting at an outdoors venue would be much better than in March. Mr. LaRocque said he would be in favor of moving the meeting to May and holding the meeting outside with an ap-propriate audio/speaker system. Mr. Kimmel suggested waiting to see how the legislature will proceed and it was agreed that an initial approach would be proposed by the next Board meeting on December 28.
F. Highways
Mr. Tim Higgins, Road Crew Foreman, said an inventory of the Town roads with erosion prob-lems amounted to about 13 miles of road that needed work. This number represents about 16% of the Town roads. Mr. Higgins was asked to contact Rita Seto at Two Rivers-Ottauquechee Re-gional Commission to ascertain when the erosion grants will be available.
Mr. Higgins reported that he had talked with Mr. Bill Grady about a tree with which Mr. Grady has concerns. Mr. Higgins stated the tree is on a neighbor’s property and he would be consulting with the landowner in the near future and would get back to Mr. Grady.
Mr. Higgins also reported that work would continue with ditching and culverts until the roads begin to freeze up. He met with Mr. Tucker concerning crushing stone. On the open market crushing is $9.50 a yard and $13.50 if they have to haul it. There is still a lot of work to do at the Sprague property and there is still another year to work with Mr. Larry Hebert. Mr. Higgins was asked to make sure Mr. Hebert knows the Town wants another 6,000 yards of sand priced ac-cordingly. Mr. Benson said he had met with Keith Sprague and had given him a copy of the plans. Mr. Sprague said he intended to work fairly with the Town and the supply of sand should last from 15 to 20 years.
It was reported that a car had gone off the Ridge Road and damaged some memorial stones in the Brookfield cemetery. Ms. Peterson said the Town’s insurance does not cover the cost of the stones but that the driver’s insurance should cover the cost.
Mr. Benson asked Ms. Peterson to check on the cost of including damage to memorial stones in the Town’s policy and also to see if there was flood insurance to cover the Fire Station.
Mr. Benson asked Ms. Peterson if all the compensation for Rob Wheatley’s work for the Town Highway Department had been settled and Ms. Peterson stated that it had been completed.
D. New Business
1. Public Safety Advisory Committee – Traffic Ordinance Review
The report of the Committee recommended several changes be made by putting up yield signs and MPH signs on various roads in Town. Some of the signs will have to be warned before they can be put up. Mr. LaRocque will check the ordinance to see which roads need to be warned. Mr. LaRocque will also ask the Sheriff about vehicles encroaching at a residence on Stone Road. Mr. Higgins will review the Committee’s report and report back at the next meeting.
2. Mapping Proposal – Cartographic Associates (See above)
3. Town Meeting Guidelines (See above)
4. Local Hazard Mitigation Plan – Mr. Benson signed on behalf of the Board.
F. Old Business – None
G. Approve Minutes from the 23 November 2020 Board Meeting
After a review of the minutes of November 23, Mr. LaRocque moved to approve the minutes as presented. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion and the minutes were unanimously approved. 3-0-0
H. Payroll and AP Warrants
Mr. LaRocque made a motion to accept the payroll and accounts payable warrants as presented with the total amount being $72,711.90 and highest amount being paid to the Town of Barre Am-bulance Service in the amount of $31,536.90. Mr.Kimmel seconded the motion. There being no objection, the motion passed unanimously.
I. Other Proper Business
Ms. Peterson brought up the issue of the invoice for the Town Audit which included the amount for two years’ audit which will bring the amount to be paid over budget. Mr. Benson suggested the Town wait until June to pay the invoice. Mr. LaRocque and Mr. Kimmel agreed.
J. Adjournment – Mr. Benson asked if there was any further business. Everyone wished each other a Merry Christmas. There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. Kimmel moved for adjournment. Mr. LaRocque seconded and the meeting was adjourned at 7:56 p.m.
Respectfully submitted,
Betty T. Lord, Secretary