April 9, 2007
Present: Ed Melanson, Chairman; Dan Winslow, Member; Vida Holmes, Member
Absent: Harvey Nasuti, Vice Chairman; Ellen Friedman, Member
Ed Melanson called the meeting to order at 7:20 at the Town Hall in Room 214. The meeting was opened with a moment of silence in respect for Adam Kennedy, a young Norfolk Army Sergeant who had been killed while on duty in Iraq, and for his friends and family.
Open Public Forum:
With no one from the public in attendance, Mr. Melanson deferred to the next item on the agenda.
Report from the DPW Director
Building Expansion Article: Mr. Vito informed the Board that he had met with both the Advisory Board and the Board of Selectmen. The Boards did not want to support the article for expansion of the DPW building at this time, preferring instead to move forward with design of a public safety building first. Mr. Vito stated that since we have absorbed the Water Division, as well as vehicle maintenance for Fire & Police, and we have given up our storage place at the old Town Hall, the DPW space needs have come up quicker than anticipated. Although Mr. Vito was not in favor of indefinitely postponing the building expansion article, the Board of Selectmen had stated that they would like to put the two projects together to present at Town Meeting in the fall of 2007, and fund at the 2008
Annual Town Meeting, and Mr. Vito did concur with this decision.
Retained Earnings: A revised Water Retained Earnings spreadsheet had been distributed to the Board for review. Mr. Vito noted that the $110,000.00 previously included for the architectural design of the DPW building expansion had been removed. This would leave $229,603 to be transferred from Retained Earnings at Town Meeting, leaving a balance of $818,642; and $960,450 to be scheduled for borrowing.
Mr. Vito noted that the tank cleaning project that was on the warrant last year for $325,-350,000.00 has increased to $472,000.00 this year.
Mr. Winslow inquired as to whether Article 8, water main extension on Maple Street would result in betterments. Mr. Vito responded that the project was not designed to extend services, but to help the hydraulic system itself, and would therefore not result in betterments
Route 115: Mr. Vito stated the final completion of the project has been delayed due to bad weather, but will be done in next few weeks, weather permitting.
Sherwood & David Road Article: Mr. Vito met with Planning Board on 4/5/07; will be meeting with landowners on 4/24, and Advisory Board on 4/25. 100% landowner cost.
DPW Inspections: Mr. Vito spoke with the Planning Board with respect to having the DPW inspect some jobs. It was agreed that the DPW will take over all water review & inspections effective 7/1/07. Planning Board is also interested in having DPW take on drainage inspections; Mr. Vito will meet with the Board of Health regarding this. Conservation Commission is also interested in having DPW review & inspect drainage issues.
BPW Committee Report: It was agreed that the Board will put together a report for Town Meeting, which would be their last report. Discussion continued with regard to the need for a continuing oversight Board. Mr. Winslow discussed that if it is decided that an oversight board is not really necessary, than a succession plan becomes critical.
Water Rebate: Mr. Melanson suggested that we should revisit this after the new rates have had some time. Mr. Melanson also suggested that perhaps rebates could be based on a progressive rate, similar to the water consumption rates. Action Item: Mr. Melanson created a spreadsheet based on a $200,000 total credit, which he will circulate.
Employee Recognition: Special congratulations were expressed for Bob Towner, Solid Waste employee, for finding and returning a wallet to a resident. E-mail from the resident expressing gratitude to Mr. Towner will be placed in Mr. Towner’s record.
Budget: The DPW budget as submitted has been accepted with no further cuts requested. It was noted that the consolidation into DPW has helped to attain 2% decreases in annual budget for two years, in spite of increased in fixed costs, and increases in services provided.
DPW Superintendent: Discussion continued with regard to reasons why the initial advertising for the DPW Superintendent didn’t bring more applications; perhaps salary was a reason. Mr. Winslow suggested town-owned housing, or a housing allowance of some sort might make the position more appealing. Mr. Melanson stated that the advertising needs to be re-opened.
Tighe & Bond Invoice: Mr. Melanson inquired as to Tighe & Bond’s compliance to the Scope of work submitted by them. Mr. Vito stated that he had reviewed the scope with Whitewater Associate Representative, Mr. Russell Tierney, and will be discussing it with Mr. Omer Dumais of Tighe & Bond.
Residential Cross-Connection: It was recently discovered that a resident switched from town water to well water, without the proper inspections. This was only discovered when the resident called to inquire as to why he received an estimated water bill, when he wasn’t using town water. Mr. Vito informed the Board that the Town water has been turned off at the curb stop, and will be turned off at the main within 30 day. The need for strict, clear inter-departmental policies and procedures to prevent this from happening in the future was discussed.
At 8:10 p.m. being no further business Mr. Winslow made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Mr. Melanson seconded, and it was so voted.