05-06-2014 Select Board Meeting Minutes


Town of Bowdoinham

Select Board Meeting

May 6, 2014 at 5:30 p.m.



1.         Call the Meeting to Order & Establish a Quorum


The meeting was called to order and quorum established by Chairman Hobart at 5:30 p.m.  Select Board members Brian Hobart, Wendy Cunningham, M. Theresa Turgeon and Douglas Tourtelotte were present.  Board member Kathy Gallant was absent. Staff present included Town Manager William Post and Planning and Development Director Nicole Briand. Also present were David Whittlesey, Tom Walling, Wendy Rose, Brad Foley, David Engler, Dan Billings, Albert Stehle and Paul Beltramini.   


2.         Public Hearing to obtain public comments on the draft warrant articles to be voted on at the Annual Town Meeting on June 10 and 11, 2014.


            Chair Hobart opened the public hearing at 5:30 p.m.


The Manager reviewed the draft Annual Town Meeting Warrant with those present and stated that if there were any questions, please ask.


Article 1 is to elect a moderator. Article 2 is for the Land Use Ordinance amendments approved by the Planning Board and Reviewed by the Board.


Article 3 is to adopt the new Comprehensive Plan. Article 4 is to create the new Tax Increment Financing District for the CMP project.


Articles 5 through 16 are the expense articles for the Town’s budget. Articles 17 and 18 are the individual articles for the BCDI and Merrymeeting Arts Center requests for $5,000 funding each.


Article 19 is the required article for the tax levy limit, also known as LD1. However, the budget as proposed is under the tax levy limit.


Article 20 is the revenue budget article and Article 21 asks for using $75,000 from undesignated fund balance instead of the $100,000 used last year to reduce the amount needed from property taxes.


Articles 22 through 39 are normal business articles, with two exceptions. Article 25 is new and asks for authorization to allow the tax collector to offer a tax club plan that would allow the Town to accept monthly payments of taxes and waive interest on the four months of payments that would be paid after the due dates of October and April.


David Whittlesey asked if the monthly payments could be done electronically by automatic withdrawal. The Manager stated that they could not at first, but any tax payer can use the town’s on-line payments system or their own through their bank.


Article 34 asks for authorization for the Board to enter into an interlocal agreement with Richmond, Topsham and Gardiner for the Merrymeeting Trail planning.


Dan Billings stated that he appreciates the Town keeping the town budget increase low because of the sizable proposed increase in the school budget. However, he is concerned that there is no paving planned in the budget. It would not be good to fall behind in the paving and have to play catch up later. Chair Hobart responded that most of the paved roads are in good shape and the gravel roads were improved last year and will be worked on again this year. The Manager responded that one of the roads on the top of the list to be paved is Pork Point Road, and that road is being used by the contractors for the CMP project. CMP has a bond on the road to repair it if there is damage, and he did not want to pave that road until the CMP project is completed in 2015. The Manager stated that there will be request for paving in the next budget.


Albert Stehle asked if funding for maintenance and construction for the Merrymeeting Trail would be broken down by Town for their share. The Manager stated that is the likely scenario, but the construction and maintenance are years away. The interlocal agreement allows a board of supervisors to be created with representatives from each town. This board would then create by-laws and other guiding documents for the planning, construction and maintenance of the trail.


There being no further comments or questions, Chair Hobart closed the public hearing at 5:41 p.m.


4.         Amendments to the Agenda – None


5.         Approve Consent Calendar

  1. Meeting Minutes of April 22, 2014

B.   Warrants & Financial Reports:

1.   Treasurer’s Warrant #69 for $40,882.18

            C.  Reports & Communications

                  1.   Northeast Mobile Health Services Quarterly Report

                  2.   Annual Solid Waste Management and Recycling Report


On motion of Turgeon/Tourtelotte, the Board voted 4 – 0 to approve the Consent Calendar as presented.


5.         Action Items

A.  Act on Approval of “An Ordinance to Amend the Town of Bowdoinham Land Use Ordinance”


The Manager stated that the ordinance amendments were approved by the Planning Board and reviewed by the Select Board previously. The Town Attorney drafted the ordinance.  


On motion of Turgeon/Tourtelotte, the Board voted 4 – 0 to approve “An Ordinance to Amend the Land Use Ordinance”


B.   Act on 2014 Annual Town Meeting Warrant:


On motion of Cunningham/Tourtelotte, the Board voted 4 – 0 to approve the 2014 Annual Town Meeting Warrant as discussed.


C.  Act on Excise Tax Reimbursement Request


The Manager stated that resident Kathy Guerin requested the consideration of reimbursement of excise tax paid on a vehicle that ended up having to be registered twice within a few days. The resident’s vehicle was titled and registered in her business’s name and needed to be re-registered, but she wanted to transfer the registration to her name so that her family could drive the vehicle and be covered by insurance.  State law does not allow a registration to be transferred from a business to an individual and receive a credit of excise tax paid. The Board must act on this request.


On motion of Cunningham/Tourtelotte, the Board voted to approve refunding $508.95 of excise tax as requested.


6.         Discussion Items


            A.  Northeast Mobile Health Services Contract


The Manager stated that the contract with Northeast for ambulance service expires June 30, 2014. Northeast has proposed a new three-year contract at the same price ($2,500) per year. Within the last year, the Manager was approached by another ambulance provider asking if they could provide a proposal for ambulance service. At the time, the Town’s contract was still in effect, and not close to expiration. However, since the contract is expiring, the Manager felt the Board should weigh in as to whether they wish to receive other proposals before entering a new three-year contract with Northeast.


The Manager stated that he does not have any negative comments or experiences concerning Northeast, and think they do a good job. There are times that they need to pass calls on to Topsham Rescue because Northeast does not have an ambulance available, but that will happen with any service. 


The Board asked the Manager to contact the other provider to gauge interest.


B.   May 13th Select Board Meeting


The Manager stated that the next regular Board meeting is scheduled for one week, on May 13th. At this point, there are no agenda items. By consensus, the Board agreed to cancel the May 13th meeting.


7.         Town Manager’s Report


            The Manager stated that the Town Office and Town Hall septic system is failing, it is unknown what type of system it is, but it is old and a new system is needed. Fortunately, a system designed in 1999 was recorded at the Registry of Deeds and can be built as designed. The Manager plans to put the system out to bid.  The new system is estimated to cost as much as $25,000. The Town has two reserve funds available for this project for a total of about $7,000. He recommends receiving and opening the bids and then bringing the topic up at town meeting with an amount that is needed. The Board agreed with this plan of action.


            The Manager stated that he has received another complaint on fireworks and expects more complaints as summer approaches. As before, an ordinance has been mentioned, but the ordinance cannot be enforced as the Town has no constable or law enforcement.


            Board member Tourtelotte stated that he read about an ordinance in another town that limited fireworks to Fridays and Saturdays and some holidays and believes that may be a good way to regulate the fireworks.


            Board member Turgeon asked if a constable could be hired on a per incident basis. Chair Hobart answered that the Town could hire a constable, but the issue now is the training requirements for a constable.


            Turgeon stated that she thinks something needs to be done about this issue, but she does not know the answer.


Board member Cunningham stated that she is concerned that the Board may solve a problem and then cause a problem for those that are not abusing fireworks.


Chair Hobart stated that maybe fireworks could be regulated by obtaining a permit from the Fire Chief in order to use fireworks. Tourtelotte stated that he likes that idea, but wondered how it would be enforced.


The Manager stated that he would do more research on constables and training requirements and bring the topic back to the Board in the future.


8.         Select Board Member’s Request for Agenda Items for Next Meeting – None


9.         Announce Future Select Board Meetings

A.  May 13th – Regular Meeting (CANCELLED)

B.   May 27th – Regular Meeting


10.       Comments from Select Board Members


            Board member Turgeon stated that the Bowdoinham Shipmates will be receiving a lesson from Diane Mosher on cheese making and then they will make lasagna for lunch with the freshly made cheese.  


            Board member Cunningham stated that she would like a formal application for organizations that are seeking funding from the Town. David Whittlesey stated that it would make sense and would help the organizations frame their requests. Cunningham stated she would work on it and get back to the Board.


11.       Comments from the Public


            Annette Mott thanked the Board and Manager for the work they do for the Town.


12.       Adjourn


            The meeting adjourned by acclamation at 6:12 p.m.



                                    Select Board                                                                                                   

                                    Town of Bowdoinham, Maine   Brian Hobart, Chair




                                                                                                M. Theresa Turgeon, Vice-Chair




                                                                                                Wendy Cunningham




                                                                                                Kathleen Gallant




                                                                                                Douglas Tourtelotte



                                                                                                Respectfully Submitted,




                                                                                                William S. Post, Town Manager