2011-12-05 Select Board Meeting Minutes

MINUTES

Town of Bowdoinham

Select Board Meeting & Workshop

December 5, 2011 12:00 p.m.

 

 

1.         Call the Meeting to Order & Establishment of a Quorum

 

The meeting was called to order and quorum established by Chairman Hobart at 12:00 p.m.  Selectpersons Brian Hobart, Doug Tourtelotte, Kathy Gallant, Kathy Tome and M. Theresa Turgeon were present.  Staff present included Town Manager William Post. One member of the public was also present.

 

2.         Amendments to the Agenda - None

 

3.         Comments from the Public - None

 

4.         Approve Consent Calendar

            A.  Warrants & Financial Reports:

                  1.   Treasurer’s Warrant #31 for $322,351.99

                 

On motion of Turgeon/Tourtelotte, the Board voted 5 – 0 to approve Treasurer’s Warrant #31 for $322,351.99.

           

5.         Action Items

           

            A.  Act on Confirmation of Town Manager’s Appointment of Chadd Mayo as Public Works Foreman

 

The Town Manager stated that he received nine applicants for the position, and four were interviewed. Chair Hobart served on the interview team with the town manager.  After the interview process, Chair Hobart and the manager agreed to offer the position to Chadd Mayo, who has worked as a driver/laborer with the Public Works Department for about eight years. 

 

On motion of Tourtelotte/Turgeon, the Board voted 5 - 0 to confirm the Town Manager’s Appointment of Chadd Mayo as Public Works Foreman.

 

B.   Act on Approval of 2011 Hazard Mitigation Plan for Sagadahoc County    

 

The Manager stated that the Hazard Mitigation Plan was revised by a large group representing all of the towns in the county as well as county officials. The plan needs all towns to approve it as well as the county commissioners.

 

On motion of Tourtelotte/Tome, the Board voted 5 – 0 to approve the 2011 Hazard Mitigation Plan for Sagadahoc County.

 

 

6.         Workshop

 

  1. Board to meet in Workshop Session to Discuss Goals, Priorities, Work Plan, etc.

     

            The Town Manager prepared a list of projects, policies and issues that he has discovered since he started in July.  The list is not in any particular order or priority, but he wanted the Board to be aware of his suggested projects and policy updates that are needed. 

 

            The manager stated that the Board is the policy-making authority, and his duty is to make recommendations to the Board and carry out their policies and abide by state statutes as appropriate to the Town’s business. The manager asked each Board member to provide an area or two that is a priority.

 

            Selectperson Tourtelotte stated that he noticed on the manager’s list an item labeled “Update Fund Balance Policy”. Tourtelotte stated that his top priority is to keep the town’s finances healthy, to look forward and make the town a better place. The Board and manager then discussed the town’s trust funds including the fact that the town borrowed from the trust funds for needed cash flow and then repaid the borrowed funding, but not the interest. The Manager has a list of interest owed to each trust fund, but also noted that borrowing from trust funds is not an unusual practice in small towns that are in need of cash flow.  However, the Town is in good financial condition and does not need to borrow for cash flow now, do to the undesignated fund balance at around $990,000.  In addition, the manager stated that some of the trust funds owe the Town for projects that were paid by the Town without having the funds drawn down from the trust funds.  The manager and deputy treasurer are working on this issue and will present the amounts to the Board for action.

 

            Selectperson Tome stated that she believes that communications are a priority including communications between the Board and town manager and between the Board and the citizens.  The Board and manager then discussed utilizing the current newsletter in a manner that would inform the citizens more about the activities of the town’s government and its committees.  The discussion also included the idea of expanding the number of newsletters printed during the year from four to six, and reducing the number of pages.  

 

            Selectperson Tome stated that personnel are another priority. She suggested more training for town staff, including customer service and other trainings that would help them perform their jobs more efficiently.  The Manager stated that the town staff also needs updated safety trainings, and that the Town does not have a safety plan in place. This is on the list he prepared.  He also stated that more trainings are definitely needed and he will be requesting more funding in the budget for training, in all departments.

 

            Chair Hobart asked the manager to state his priorities from the list provided.  The Manager stated that there are a couple of areas that he feels are very important and both fall into the “personnel” category. The first is the employee training, both safety and other. He stated that there has not been much training of employees over the previous several years and that the mandatory safety training has not been accomplished as he stated earlier.  In addition, employees need to be provided with the tools to accomplish their jobs effectively, efficiently and safely.  These tools can be actual tools for the Public Works employees or ergonomic office furniture for office employees. The other area is ensuring that all federal and state labor laws are being followed closely.

 

            Chair Hobart stated that the area of law enforcement needs to be addressed. The Town used to have a police department, and it was very costly to eliminate.  The Town then used constables to enforce ordinances, such as the parking ordinance, but the Town does not have constables any more.  The Board should decide if a constable is needed or not, and if not, then the ordinances that require enforcement by a constable need to be addressed. 

 

            Selectperson Turgeon stated that she would like to see the Town recognize volunteers or have a program for “citizen of the year”. She stated that there are amazing people in town performing volunteer work that go unrecognized and this should be changed.  She stated that the EMS and Fire Departments should receive commendation for their handling of the recent pedestrian death accident on Fisher Road. She also stated that the Town should review striping roadways as a way to improve public safety. In addition, she stated that the by-laws for all committees should be reviewed.  She has been a member of the Cable/Internet Committee and cannot serve in that capacity any longer as a select board member.  This should be reviewed, as it is important for select board members to know what the committees are working on. The Board agreed to place this on the next agenda for action, as the consensus was that Select Board members should be allowed to serve on committees. 

 

            Selectperson Tome stated that another priority of hers is how to help those in need in Town. The Manager gave an overview of the General Assistance Program and the Bowdoinham Heating Program.  He also stated that the Heating Program is in need of fundraising efforts, as the balance is running low.  Selectperson Tourtelotte suggested that a fundraising committee should be created for the heating fund and other needy families.

 

            The Manager agreed to compile a list of topics and then to prioritize his items under the broader topics. He will also add the items discussed at the workshop and then the Board should meet in another workshop and provide some prioritized topics.

 

7.         Adjourn

 

            The meeting adjourned at 1:55 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 Douglas Tourtelotte