Town of Brookfield
February 25, 2019 at 6:30 P.M.
Town Clerk’s Office
Present: John Benson (Chair), Cory Haggett, Jeff Kimmel, Dawn Conant, Ginny Brees, Brenda Flint, George Zebora
- Call to Order – 6:30 p.m.
- Adjustments to Agenda – None
- Public Comment – None
- New Business:
- Town Meeting Day – Informational Meeting
- Benson went over the Articles to be discussed and voted on at Town Meeting. The first item was the $5,000 to be allocated for the Emerald Ash Borer issue.
- Zebora asked if this money is for a contract, has the Town looked at companies specifically and gotten bids. Mr. Benson responded that this is the number the Public Safety Advisory Committee suggested to start looking at our options, figure out where to start, and then proceed with a plan.
- Flint commented that there are many trees in the ROW, which will eventually fall and hit power lines or pose other hazards. She asked if the Town knew how many miles of roadway have trees posing a potential problem. Mr. Benson responded that there isn’t a detailed inventory yet, and the Board would need to work with Ray Peck (Road Crew Foreman) to gather that information.
- Kimmel noted that Kate Forrer from UVM Extension would be at the Town Meeting to discuss the ash tree problem and recommendations.
- The Town doesn’t yet have a plan for harvesting the trees, but that will be part of the planning process.
- The Mystic Star Lodge (Masonic Temple) requested a tax stabilization for a period of 5 years. While it is a private organization, the Board noted that it has contributed its space in the past for Town functions, along with various other community functions.
- On the Warning items regarding funding for proposed additions and renovations at the Town Garage: Mr. Benson indicated that the amounts requested are an attempt to initiate discussion at Town Meeting about long-term planning for the Garage site. The Town is having a contractor come up with a preliminary design/cost plan. The Town can either opt to put money aside over a few years once the cost is known or can vote (next Town Meeting likely) to spend the total amount (with a loan or tax increase) to just build the addition. At such time the Town would put the job out to competitive bid and go from there.
- Zebora asked about possible money for the upgrade of Eagle Peak Road as during the winter 2 cars cannot always pass each other and mud seasons are horrible with residents having to park and walk to their houses. Mr. Benson commented that the Board and Road Crew review road priorities annually, and the Town cannot afford to upgrade all the roads every year. The Board will continue to work with Mr. Peck to figure out what can be done.
- Brees asked if there was going to be a drawing and list of what the Town wants for the garage addition. Mr. Benson said they will have a drawing and a ball park idea/range at Town Meeting for discussion
- Change in Town Clerk/Treasurer term of office: Mr. Benson suggested that Clerk/Treasurer Teresa research what other Towns were doing, and describe the rationale for increasing the terms to 3 years instead of 1. Ms. Godfrey will likely address the question at Town Meeting.
- Survey on Stone Road: there is an ongoing issue with cars that are allegedly parked illegally, and the Orange County Sheriff’s Department has been asked to monitor the situation. The next step is to survey a portion of the road to determine where the centerline and Town’s Right-of-Way are located.
- Up-coming Town-wide Reappraisal: the Town has accumulated the funds from an annual state contribution, and has the money already set aside for the project. Brookfield hasn’t done a reappraisal since 2007; this next one will be done in 2020.
- Zebora asked if it is legal for the Town to make money, and if someone came up with an idea that the Town could use to make money, could they? Mr. Benson commented that if there is an idea, the person(s) should come to a Board meeting with research and information on the idea and the Board would look into it.
- Peck was not in attendance at meeting; Mr. Haggett had information regarding Highway activities. Witts Bridge is about complete, although there still needs to be some finish work on the stonework for the bridge.
- Haggett moved that the Board go into Executive Session at 7:29 regarding a personnel issue, Mr. Kimmel second: 3-0-0. The Board came out of the session at 7:32 p.m.
- Benson wants to make sure that we recognize the following at Town Meeting; Dee Montie’s service to the Town, along with the work Mr. Peck and the Road Crew have done to get Witt’s Bridge repaired and back in service. Also, the Board will report on the planned reappraisal and the existing funding for it.
- Winter update: the Crew has gone through the sand supply and will need to order more, so the Board and Mr. Peck will need to continue monitoring the budget funds allocated for sand and chloride.
- Talk about equipment order and how we do not pay for until next fiscal year (happens once every 3 years – rotation).
- Old Business:
- Approve Minutes of February 18, 2019 meeting: deferred until the next Board meeting.
- Certificate of Highway Mileage: deferred until the next Board meeting.
- Payroll/AP Warrants: Mr. Haggett made a motion to pay the warrants totaling $314.66; Mr. Kimmel second: 3-0-0.
- Other Proper Business:
- The Board will need to announce a search for a new (Zoning) Administrative Officer at Town Meeting.
- Reminder: Annual Town Meeting on Tuesday, March 5, 2019 at the Brookfield Elementary School at 10:00 a.m.
- Mr. Kimmel made a motion to adjourn at 7:43 p.m., Mr. Haggett second: 3-0-0.