07-09-2013 Select Board Meeting Minutes


Town of Bowdoinham

Select Board Meeting

July 9, 2013 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, Kathy Tome, Doug Tourtelotte and M. Theresa Turgeon were present.  Kathy Gallant was absent.  Staff present included Town Manager William Post.  Also present was George Christopher, Linda Jariz, Gracia Woodward, Ruby Hussey, Peggy Muir and Kathy Pszczolkowski.


2.         Amendments to the Agenda – Item 5.A. “Update from Advisory Committee on Aging”


3.         Approve Consent Calendar

  1. Meeting Minutes of June 25, 2013 - Tabled
  2. Warrants & Financial Reports:
    1. Treasurer’s Warrant #73 for $56,649.64
    2. Treasurer’s Warrant #1 (FY14) for $17,900.84
    3. June Financial Report

            C.  Reports & Communications

                  1.   Sheriff’s June Incident Report


On motion of Tome/Turgeon, the Board voted 4 – 0 to approve the consent calendar without the minutes as presented.


4.         Action Items

            A.  Act on Appointments to Advisory Committee on Aging


The Town Manager stated that he missed the appointments to this committee when the Board made appointments in June. Two are returning members, Theresa Turgeon and Linda Jariz with three year terms and one new alternate, Jeanine Beaudoin, replacing Neal Brown who never attended after the first meeting. The alternate’s term would end on June 30, 2015.


On motion of Turgeon/Tourtelotte, the Board voted 4 – 0 to appoint Theresa Turgeon and Linda Jariz to the Advisory Committee on Aging for terms ending June 30, 2016 and Jeanine Beaudoin as an alternate to the Committee for a term ending June 30, 2015.


  1. Act on Transfers to Reserve Funds as Authorized by Town Meeting


The Manager stated that the Annual Town Meeting approved the creation of two reserve funds in articles 16 and 17.



Article 16 established an Electronic Equipment Reserve Fund and appropriated the sum of $10,000 from Cable Franchise Fee revenue. Because the town meeting appropriated the funds, the Board does not need to take any action.


Article 17 established a Comprehensive Plan Reserve Fund and authorized the Select Board to transfer the unexpended balance of the FY 2013 Planning/Code Enforcement Budget to the Comprehensive Plan Reserve Fund. The Manager stated that there is an unexpended balance in the FY2013 Planning/Code Enforcement Budget of $16,074.62, of which $5,422.79 is in the Comprehensive Plan budget line. He recommended the Board transfer $5,400 from the FY13 Planning/Code Enforcement Budget to the Comprehensive Plan Reserve Fund.


On motion of Tome/Turgeon, the Board voted 4 – 0 to transfer $5,400 from the FY13 Planning/Code Enforcement Budget to the Comprehensive Plan Reserve Fund


5.         Discussion Items

            A.  Update from Advisory Committee on Aging


            George Christopher, Chair of the Advisory Committee on Aging, read a prepared report. 


            “The Committee on Aging functions with no budget and no staff and a very decentralized structure where each committee member donates energy to that aspect of the goals that engages them most.


            Since the Committee is the staff, each meeting is a combination of staff input and then an adopted direction. No votes are taken – discussion continues until consensus is reached. With this format the person taking minutes must be a gifted editor lest the “minutes” become the “hours”. The committee has been fortunate to have Gracia Woodward as our minute taker who distills much discussion into the consensus action.


            Peggy Muir asked the principal of Voc 10 in Brunswick to attend a committee meeting to tell us about the programs Voc 10 offered. Peggy impressed upon him the job opportunities coming in the future for his students in serving the growing aging population. Beginning in September 2013, Voc 10 will offer that emphasis for their courses. Peggy is also one of the volunteer drivers taking people to doctor visits.


            Theresa is the reason the committee began and she focused her energy on staffing a drop in center at the Baptist Church. The drop in center is gradually evolving into days of specific activities such as movies, crafts, games and useful informational lectures. Theresa is also the contact person reached when people call the Town Office senior concern line and she is also the committee member responsible for organizing transportation for those who need it (both medical and social needs). Because of this availability those who no longer wish to drive are able to remain in their homes.


            Kathy Pszczolkowski joined the committee because of her interest in an exercise program and is the point person in making it all happen at the Fire Station. It has become the most popular event with 22 citizens participating and with the days being increased from one to two each week with numerous people also using the programs that take place the other three week days in the Town of Bowdoin.


            Martha Cushing and Linda Jariz both give their energy to the exercise program and they have also both organized weekly walking events where participants are allowed to walk at their own pace but are also encouraged to push themselves so as to get the most health benefit from the activity. Martha provides the committee with connections to the senior infrastructure in Brunswick and Bath and insights as to how other towns address similar concerns.


            Linda Jariz has the most energy of all of us and not only leads the Tuesday exercise group and walking group, but helps staff the drop in center, writes the monthly activities handout and the monthly Bowdoinham News article and in general keeps us all informed and connected about what we are doing and makes sure we concentrate on proper sized projects where we can actually achieve results. She is our information manager.


            The committee is fortunate to have an advisor, Patricia Oh, a PhD candidate in gerontology. She not only gave us our guiding document “Aging in Bowdoinham” and attends our meetings to offer advice, but also taught “The Matter of Balance” course which instructs people how to avoid falls by making their living environment less hazardous. As part of that course, each individual does an assessment of their own house and then of the building where the course is given. Since the course took place in this building, a safety and accessibility study was done for this building and forwarded to the Town for its use. Patricia also was the presenter at the Village Seniors lunch in which useful home modifications for senior living were discussed.


            George Christopher has been the mild mannered chair of the committee just watching it all happen with the only guidance being that anything can be attempted consistent with our goals if people have the energy to put into the specific project. We look forward to the input of a new member Jeanine and expect more programs to occur because of her presence.”


            Board member Turgeon introduced Ruby Hussey. Ms. Hussey stated that she is glad to see there is justification for what she needs. She classifies herself as the well elderly and doesn’t like to ask for help, but is very thankful for the efforts of the committee and volunteers. She is willing top offer other basic skills to others that provide her with transportation and other assistance.


            Board member Tourtelotte stated that the committee’s work is great. He asked if there are enough volunteers. George Christopher stated that there are currently three drivers and they are not overbooked yet, but may be in the future once word gets out.


            Linda Jariz stated that at some point resources will be needed to support activities and that a part-time coordinator may be needed in the future. The Town Manager stated that the committee has only been working for six months and when they started they did not know what would be needed, who and how many would use the services and what services would be needed. The Committee has done a fantastic job so far. The Recreation Budget is not just for youth.

            The Board thanked the Committee. Chair Hobart asked that the next report include numbers of people using the different services and taking part in the different activities.


            B.   Discuss FY14 Budget


            The Manager provided two documents to the Board concerning the projected tax rate for FY14 and the projected fund balance. He stated that the Legislature voted to override the Governor’s veto of the state budget. This means that the Town will receive approximately $55,000 less in revenue sharing than expected. However, the assessors’ agent has an estimate of $3.6 million increase in assessed valuation for the Town, but this is not a final number. When factored with what is needed to be raised from taxes for the school county and municipal budgets, the tax rate would increase 1.6% to $15.34. This is a relatively small increase considering the fact that of the decrease in revenue sharing from the state. The Manager stated that it is important to look ahead to future years when deciding what tax rate to set. In future years, the Town should use less than the $100,000 from undesignated fund balance and should begin saving money in reserve accounts for projects, especially paving projects. The Manager stated that if the Board wanted to make changes to the approved FY14 budget, a special town meeting would be needed. He could find some reductions in expenses and the estimated revenues could be increased slightly because of good excise tax collections. He estimated that $99,000 would be added back into the fund balance after the audit was completed.


            Chair Hobart stated that a tax increase of 1.6% is not much considering the decrease in state revenue and suggested that a special town meeting would not be needed. He also stated that the fund balance would essentially be even with the use of $100,000 for FY13. The Manager stated that was no factored in his calculation, but was correct. The fund balance is still very strong.


            Board member Tome agreed that a special town meeting was not needed and that a tax increase of less than 2% was not bad.


            The Manager stated that the budget as approved would result in a tax increase of $36.00 on a home valued at $150,000.


            By consensus, the Board agreed that a special town meeting was not needed. 


            C.  Discuss Town-Owned Property (Tax Acquired)


            The Manager stated that he had been approached by two residents in town that own properties that abut town-owned tax acquired properties. One is on Fisher Road and one is on Ridge Road. Both expressed an interest in purchasing these properties. One issue is that the current Policy for Disposition of Tax Acquired Property states that properties must be sold through a public sale.


            Chair Hobart stated that abutters should be given the first opportunity to purchase tax acquired property. Board members Tome and Tourtelotte agreed. It makes sense for abutting property owners to be bale to purchase property.


            The Manager stated that the policy is the Board’s policy and could be amended by the Board. The Board directed the Manager to draft an amendment to the Policy for Disposition of Tax Acquired Property.


6.         Town Manager’s Report


            The Manager stated that a new copier/printer was put into place at the Town Office that will increase efficiency of the staff and is expected to save $40 per month.


            He stated that small projects were recently completed by the Public Works Department including repaving the Carding Machine Road entrance with the intersection of River Road and correcting a drainage issue on Ridge Road with the addition of a cross culvert.


            The Manager stated that the Fire Department recently was inspected by the Department of Labor as part of a voluntary inspection with the Safety Works program. There were violations found, but most of them are paperwork issues and the department has six months to correct these issues. As part of the program, the Department of Labor will not fine the Fire Department, but will work with them to correct any issues.


            The Manager stated that Darren Carey has moved to full-time status after the FY14 budget was approved.


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


8.         Announce Future Meetings and Events

A.  Select Board Meetings

1. July 23rd – Regular Meeting

2. August 13th – Regular Meeting (Rescheduled to August 6th)

            B.   Summer Concert Series, Thursdays 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. Mailly Waterfront Park


9.         Comments from Select Board Members


            Board member Turgeon stated that she had discussed previously with the Board the idea of a “Citizen of the Year” award to be announced at Celebrate Bowdoinham. She has an idea as to who it should be and would like this program started this year.


The Manager asked if there should be some criteria and who should decide on the award? Chair Hobart stated that there should be nominations based on criteria. Board member Turgeon stated there should, but the Board could decide on the first person for the award.


10.       Comments from the Public


            George Christopher asked if there was any word on the White Road being turned over to the Town. The Manager stated that he has not heard anything, but would check with MDOT


11.       Executive Session

A.  Convene in Executive Session Pursuant to 1 M.R.S. §405(6)(A) to discuss a personnel matter


On motion of Tourtelotte/Tome, the Board voted 4 – 0 to convene in executive session pursuant to 1 M.R.S. §405(6)(A) to discuss a personnel matter at 6:40 p.m.


On motion of Hobart/Tome, the Board voted 4 – 0 to reconvene in regular session at 7:02 p.m.


The Board directed the Manager to draft an amendment to his contract for an increase in salary to $73,500, two additional weeks of vacation time and a two-year extension of the contract.


12.       Adjourn


            The meeting adjourned by acclamation at 7:03 p.m.



                                    Select Board                                                                                                   

                                    Town of Bowdoinham, Maine   Brian Hobart, Chair




                                                                                                M. Theresa Turgeon, Vice-Chair




                                                                                                Kathleen Gallant




                                                                                                Kathy Tome




                                                                                                Douglas Tourtelotte




                                                                                                Respectfully Submitted,




                                                                                                William S. Post, Town Manager