Sep 012020

Minutes of the Meeting of


Town Clerk’s Office August 24, 2020

THOSE PRESENT: John Benson (Chair), Jeff Kimmel, Dennis LaRocque, Betty Lord (Secretary), William White, Michael Fiorillo, Amy Borgman, Charles and Theresa Taplin, Kevin LaRocque, Rob Wheatley (Interim Road Crew Foreman)
The meeting was called to order at 6:31 p.m. by the Chair, Mr. Benson.

Due to the number of people waiting to meet with the Board, Mr. Benson suggested the Agenda be adjusted to hear those waiting, which suggestion was agreed upon by Mr. Kimmel and Mr. LaRocque.

ECFiber—Mr. William White of 433 Old Cross Road, requested information about ECFiber services being available for his property. Mr. Kimmel reported that he had emailed ECFiber but to-date had not received a reply. Mr. Benson said that a switching facility has already been installed in a conduit at a 90 degree angle across the road and now the question is where to install the ECFiber cable so it will not be in jeopardy of being hit by the regular roadway operations. It was concluded that something could be done to accommodate everyone.

Harmony Electric Bill—Ms. Theresa Taplin, Mr. Charlie Taplin and Mr. Kevin LaRocque appeared to discuss the $450 bill presented to them by Harmony Electric. While doing maintenance work on the Town right-of-way on West Street, an electrical line was severed. Harmony Electric was called to reconnect the line. In determining who was responsible for paying Harmony Electric, Mr. LaRocque reported there is nothing in the Town land records to indicate that the Taplins had been granted an easement to run the electrical line in the ditch. After discussion, it was agreed the Town will write and record an easement for the electrical line with a clause that says the Taplins have the line at the privilege of the Town. The Town will pay 2/3 of the bill and the Taplins will pay the other 1/3. Monies will be paid directly to Harmony Electric.

Little Library—Ms. Amy Borgman, President of the Brookfield Town Library, reported that the Little Library, a small box being built by Dan Childs, is ready to be installed by the row of mailboxes across from the Old Town Hall. (These free Little Libraries are appearing all over the country with the idea of “Take a book or bring a book”). Ms. Borgman reported the library would be completely responsible for overseeing the maintenance of this Little Library. She also stated that people in West Brookfield would also be contacted to see if they are interested in having a Little Library there and where they would like it to be placed.

Administrative Officer—Mr. Michael Fiorillo requested a change in the process of how zoning permits and variances are issued or denied and how that information is then conveyed to the property owners. Mr. Benson suggested that a meeting of the Board of Adjustment, Planning Commission, and Selectboard be held to devise a process that works best in the interest of all concerned.

Tax Rate—The Brookfield Tax Rate for 2020-2021 was presented and is made a part of these minutes: Total Municipal Tax Rate: .5338; Education Tax Rates: Homestead Rate: 1.5746, Non- Homestead Rate: 1.5909; Total Homestead Tax Rate: 2.1084, Total Non-Homestead Tax Rate: 2.1247.

Highway—Rob Wheatley reported the Road Crew was doing some tree trimming on East Hill, some stones were being set in a washout on Churchill Road, and planks have been purchased to repair Witts Bridge. He also stated that he will get a price for rims and wheels for a dump truck and that a new full set of chains was needed. Mr. Wheatley also reported that Morgan Mile Road had been graded and was ready for the dedication of the Justin Morgan sign on Saturday, August 28th.

As discussed in previous minutes, DuBois and King have submitted a base plan for the proposed new gravel pit and it has not yet been determined what permits will be needed.

Mr. Benson will talk with Administrative Assistant Kasey Peterson regarding the Hebert and Tucker invoices and will report back to the Board.

Personnel Policy— Mr. Benson will meet with Ms. Peterson at the Town Clerk’s office to bring the personnel policies up to date and determine if a salaried or hourly rates would be best for various positions on the Town payroll. Mr. Benson stated that two applicants for the position of Highway Department Foreman would be interviewed on the evening of Wednesday, August 26 with one interview from 6:30-7:15 pm and the other from 7:30-8:00 pm. If neither applicant meets the criteria for the position, other applicants would be called in to be interviewed. Mr.
Wheatley was asked to join the interview meeting and he agreed.

Minutes of the August 10 meeting—Mr. Benson made a motion to accept the minutes as presented, Mr. LaRocque seconded, and the minutes were unanimously approved.

AP/Warrants— Mr. LaRocque made a motion to accept the Accounts Payable Warrants as presented for a total of $13,642.29 with the largest amount to be paid to Blue Cross Blue Shield in the amount of $4,500.65. Mr. Benson seconded and the motion was unanimously approved.

There being no further business to come before the Selectboard, Mr. LaRocque moved to adjourn at 8:15 p.m. Mr. Kimmel seconded the motion and it was unanimously approved.

Respectfully submitted, Betty Lord, Secretary