SELECTMEN’S MEETING

MARCH 14, 2005

 

 

Chairman Perkins called the meeting to order at 7:00 PM.

 

Selectman Bond and Selectwoman Brunelle were present.

Selectman Andrews entered the meeting at 7:25 PM.

Selectman Wiksten was absent.

 

 

SELECTMEN’S MINUTES

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

            VOTED:  To approve the Minutes of March 7, 2005.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

            VOTED:  To approve the Executive Minutes of March 7, 2005.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

HEARINGS, MEETINGS & LICENSES

 

Meeting with Tobias Cowans – RE:  ‘Red Cross Month’ Proclamation

 

Joanne Shay was present on behalf of the Red Cross, Southeast Chapter. Ms Shay explained that Tobias Cowans is the new Director, and the Red Cross is trying to be more visible.  Mr. Cowans is asking communities to proclaim March as ‘Red Cross Month’.

 

Ms. Shay also noted that the Red Cross is looking for real heroes from Plymouth County who have gone ‘above and beyond’.

 

Selectman Bond told the Board that he has strong feelings in favor of the Red Cross after witnessing the aftermath of 9/11.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Bond and seconded by Selectwoman Brunelle, the Board

            VOTED:  To declare March as American Red Cross Month.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

A proclamation from the Selectmen was presented to Ms. Shay.

 

Hearing – Request for WRPD Special Permit – Cullinan Engineering – 30 Murdock Street

 

Chairman Perkins read the following:  “The Board of Selectmen will hold a public hearing in the Selectmen’s Meeting Room at the Town Hall, 10 Nickerson Avenue, Middleborough, MA  on Monday, March 14, 2005 at 7:05 PM, for the purpose of discussing an application filed by Cullinan Engineering, on behalf of Stephen P. Forcier, for a Special Permit under the Water Resource Protection District By-law, to restore an area of disturbed wetlands within an existing wetland boundary and relocating an existing driveway outside of the 25-foot buffer zone.  The property is located at 30 Murdock Street, and shown as Assessors Map 021 Lots 3174, 3144, and 2935, zoned Residential “A”, W.R.P.D. “Z4”.   Anyone wishing to be heard on this matter should appear at the time and place designated.”  The hearing was opened.

 

Because only three (3) members of the Board were present, the hearing had to be continued.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Bond and seconded by Selectwoman Brunelle, the Board

VOTED:  To continue the hearing on an application for a WRPD Special Permit filed by Cullinan Engineering for 30 Murdock Street to March 21st.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Hearing – Request for WRPD Special Permit – Cullinan Engineering – 21 Smith Street

 

Chairman Perkins read the following:  “The Board of Selectmen will hold a public hearing in the Selectmen’s Meeting Room at the Town Hall, 10 Nickerson Avenue, Middleborough, MA  on Monday, March 14, 2005 at 7:30 PM, for the purpose of discussing an application filed by Cullinan Engineering, on behalf of Smith Development, for a Special Permit under the Water Resource Protection District By-law, to allow construction of a proposed site access driveway and associated utilities within the 25-foot buffer zone of a bordering vegetative wetland.  The property is located at 21 Smith Street, and shown as a portion of Assessors Map 087 Lots 2728 and 3588, zoned General Use “X”, W.R.P.D. “Z2 & “Z3”.   Anyone wishing to be heard on this matter should appear at the time and place designated.”  The hearing was opened.

 

Because only three (3) members of the Board were present, the hearing had to be continued.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Bond and seconded by Selectwoman Brunelle, the Board

VOTED:  To continue the hearing on an application for a WRPD Special Permit filed by Cullinan Engineering for 21 Smith Street to March 21st.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Meeting with Virginia Landis – RE:  MJHS Update

 

Virginia Landis, Chairman of the MJHS Building Committee, and other members of the Committee were present.

 

Ms. Landis provided an update on the project for the Board.  She said Project Manager, Ron Poliseno, submitted an updated cost estimate for completing the Early Childhood Center in the former Memorial Junior High School complex.  The projected cost for completion, including contingencies, is $13,500,000.00.

 

Ms. Landis explained that the costs have increased since 2001 by about 10%.  The first estimate would have the Town paying $2 million, and with the increase the cost would be about $5 million.  This is for a 91,000 s.f. building.  She said the Town would still receive the 79% reimbursement based on the original estimate.

 

Ms. Landis said she is still waiting for an answer from the State in regards to what percentage might be reimbursement for the Project Manager which is now a requirement.

 

The Committee will meet on April 1st at which time they hope to have more information.  She said the State will continue to reimburse the cost of short term borrowing, and recommended it would be to the Town’s advantage to “get something maturing in 2006”.

 

Chairman Perkins asked if Ms. Landis has spoken to the Treasurer/Collector in reference to this.

 

Ms. Landis said she spoke to her briefly, and hoped to meet with her this week.

 

Chairman Perkins asked if the Town had the capacity for bonding.

 

Ms. Landis said that the Town has the bond capacity, the question would be if it has the ability to pay back the bond.

 

Chairman Perkins suggested Ms. Landis report back to the Board after speaking with Ms. MacDonald on whether or not she is recommending bonding at this time.

 

Ms. Landis said, at a Collaborative Leadership Group meeting, Ms. MacDonald had some the $2 million borrowing had already been folded into the plans.  She hasn’t checked with Ms. MacDonald in regards to the additional cost.

 

Ms. Landis said she recommended speaking to Bond Counsel as part of the process for borrowing short or long term.

 

Chairman Perkins agreed, saying that the Town doesn’t want to lose any points on its bond rating.

 

Ms. Landis said Ms. MacDonald is sensitive to that.

 

Superintendent, Robert Sullivan, gave a background of why the renovations are being proposed for the school.  He noted that the State had changed its viewpoint on renovation projects.

 

Dr. Sullivan said the full day Kindergarten requires more classrooms.  He said the State has recognized the value of the MJHS and has allowed waivers for space requirements. 

 

Chairman Perkins asked what the LDL and School Street Schools would be used for.

 

Dr. Sullivan said there is a School Committee Sub-Committee working to come up with short term answers.  He could not say if the buildings would be maintained as educational facilities.

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Andrews, the Board

VOTED:  To include the MJHS Building Committee Articles on the Special Town Meeting Warrant for the June meeting.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Meeting with Elizabeth McDermott – ‘Not Your Same Old Country Store’ - RE:  Request for Liquor License

 

Elizabeth McDermott, owner of ‘Not Your Same Old Country Store’ was present.

 

Chairman Perkins noted a petition given to the Board that was signed by over 300 residents of South Middleborough in favor of granting a Liquor License.

 

Ms. McDermott noted that the former owner of her business, formerly the Rock Village Store, had a liquor license that had been granted through legislation.  The License was non-transferable.

 

Because of Middleboro’s quota, there are no retail liquor licenses available unless granted through legislation.

 

Selectman Bond asked if the Town was allowed so many “legislative liquor licenses”.

 

Chairman Perkins explained that there is no quota, but legislation allows the liquor licenses because the Town is “so spread out”.

 

Selectwoman Brunelle noted that an Article will have to be placed on the Town Meeting Warrant for approval.  Once given, the legislative delegate will be asked to file a Home Rule Petition.

 

Selectman Bond asked if Ms. McDermott has ever operated a liquor store.  She said her family owns a barroom in Boston.

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Andrews, the Board

VOTED:  To support a replacement legislative liquor license for “Not Your Same Old Country Store”.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

 

 

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

Request for Common Victualer License – “Stef’s Eatery”

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

VOTED:  To issue a Common Victualer License to Francis Dooley d/b/a Stef’s Eatery, 380 Centre Street, for Monday through Friday, 5AM to 2AM and Saturday and Sunday 5AM to 10PM.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Request to Ratify Appointments to Historical Commission

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Andrews, the Board

VOTED:  To ratify the appointments of Michael Maddigan and Joseph Freitas to the Historical Commission for terms of three (3) years.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Request to Rent Town Hall Auditorium – Old Colony YMCA

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Andrews, the Board

VOTED:  To rent the Town Hall Auditorium to the YMCA for a breakfast to be held on Thursday, March 24, 2005 to raise funds for the YMCA Scholarship Fund.

Unanimous Vote.

 

Request to Rent Town Hall Auditorium – Mullein Hill Christian Academy, Inc.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Bond and seconded by Selectwoman Brunelle, the Board

VOTED:  To rent the Town Hall Auditorium to Mullein Hill Christian Academy from 3:00 PM to 10:00 PM for a Spring Music Program to be held on Friday, June 3, 2005.

Unanimous Vote.

 

Request to Approve & Sign Warrant for Annual Election – Town Clerk

 

This item was tabled until next week.

 

OLD BUSINESS

 

There was no ‘Old Business’ discussed tonight.

 

 

 

 

 

TOWN MANAGER’S REPORT

 

Bid for Custodial Services Update

 

Mr. Healey told the Board that several firms have been contacted who have walked through the Town Hall and the Bank Building.  Bid Specifications are now being put together, and will be “out on the street” by April 1st.

 

Selectwoman Brunelle noted that, in additional to janitorial services, outside services are also needed for snowplowing, shoveling, law mowing, etc.  This would be an added expense.

 

Mr. Healey said this would have to be done by other departments such as the DPW and Park Department.

 

Jane Lopes asked why the Town was looking into private custodial services.

 

Mr. Healey said it could possibly be a cost savings.  He noted that, currently, a DPW employee is filling in for the custodial position.  He said there is still a part-time custodian who works nights.

 

Selectwoman Brunelle asked if the person would go back to the DPW.

 

Mr. Healey said he would.

 

Chairman Perkins asked that, once bids are back on the custodial services, a complete financial breakdown is done before making a decision.

 

May Special Town Meeting

 

Mr. Healey told the Board that the Planning Board has informed him that it will not be ready to get a zoning article together for a May Special Town Meeting.

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

            VOTED:  To cancel the Special Town Meeting scheduled for May 2nd.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

VOTED:  To schedule a Special Town Meeting within the Annual Town Meeting scheduled for June 6, 2005, with the closing date for the Warrant remaining March 31st.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Town Manager’s Evaluation

 

Members were reminded to submit their evaluations to the Chairman.

 

Financial Update

 

Mr. Healey told the Board that he will be going to meet with the FinCom tonight to discuss the numbers.  He said that Wednesday night, the MJHS Building Committee learned that the $9,982,219 Renovation Project had become a $13,500,00 project.

 

On Thursday night, the Police Station Building Committee learned that the first phase of the site analysis (Wood Street) and design of the station would require $154,000.

 

On Tuesday night, Chairman Perkins met with the Housing Authority and they agreed to give up their claim to the Wood Street site.  An Article to rescind the 1987 vote is being prepared.

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Bond the Board

VOTED:  To notify the Housing Authority of the availability of property similar in size to the Wood Street property, prior to auctioning it.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Mr. Healey said he has not yet conferred with the Superintendent and his staff on the Indirect Cost Assessment. 

 

The Snow and Ice Deficit has reached $225,000.  We are currently eligible for about $70,000 in reimbursement for the “Big Storm”.

 

A.C.O P. FROM D.E.P.

 

The Town has received the Administrative Consent Order with Penalty (A.C.O.P.).  The total Civil Administrative Penalty exposure for the Town of Middleborough regarding this matter is $191,858.20.

 

 

Mr. Healey said he does not believe that certain statements and allegations are correct and will seek clarification for others.  Weston & Sampson is contacting DEP.

 

Group Medical Insurance

 

Upon motion by Selectman Andrews and seconded by Selectwoman Brunelle, the Board

VOTED:  To instruct the Town Manager and the Town Treasurer, as representatives of the Town to the Southeastern Massachusetts Health Group (S.M.H.G.), to work with the Group and EBS Foran to get approval from all member entities to meet with their Insurance Advisory Committees (I.A.C.’s) to begin the process of security the I.A.C.’s to support the switch to a Consumer Driven Healthcare Program.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Selectwoman Brunelle noted that this will take time, and the Insurance Advisory Group will need to be involved.

 

Landfill Committee

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

VOTED:  To send a memo to the WMAC asking that they adopt a provision in the Contract for a Landfill Committee to address neighborhood concerns.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Law Department Budget

 

Discussion ensued on a letter from Richard Pavadore regarding the Law Department Budget. 

 

Selectwoman Brunelle said that Town Counsel’s budget was under payroll, with out of pocket expenses billed separately.  She said she didn’t know where or when it was combined.  She said it wasn’t a few years ago.    She also noted that quite some time ago a previous Board had approved $120/hour for Town Counsel.  She also had concerns with discussing what Town Counsel’s deductions and benefits were.  She didn’t know if he received health benefits.

 

Selectman Bond said there are three (3) elements of an independent contractor vs. an employee:  He doesn’t work on the premises, is not controlled by an individual assigning, and offers those services to the public at large.

 

Selectman Bond said there is the possibility of a misclassification of an employee.  He said that Town Counsel receives a ‘W2’.  He also receives an hourly rate, not a salary.  He said Mr. Pavadore’s question is well placed, noting an employee costs more because of other deductions, such as FICA.

 

Selectwoman Brunelle said Town Counsel has provided a budget since the mid 60s.  She said it is a drawing account classified as a salary.  She said other communities do the same.  She also noted that many Town Counsels are in the Plymouth County Retirement system.

 

Selectman Bond said the error cannot continue to be compounded.  If his salary is broken down, it averages less than 10 hours/week, which is less than a part-time employee.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Bond and seconded by Selectman Andrews, the Board

VOTED:  To ask the Treasurer why Town Counsel is ‘W2d’, is it her understanding that his payments are salary, and whether or not Town Counsel is an employee or independent contractor.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Selectman Bond said he would like this information for next Monday.

 

Neil Rosenthal suggested asking Town Counsel what his rationale is.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Bond and seconded by Selectman Andrews, the Board

            VOTED:  To send a letter of inquiry to Town Counsel.

 

            Unanimous Vote.

 

SELECTMEN’S BILLS

 

There were not bills to pay tonight.

 

OTHER

 

Discussion ensued on an Executive Session issue from last week. 

 

Selectman Andrews didn’t believe that the grievance filed by the Union, held in Executive Session last week, should’ve been.  He noted another grievance from GMEG in this week’s packet marked ‘confidential’.

 

Selectman Andrews said the Grievance should be out in the public process.  The contract is negotiated as an instrument by which to settle a grievance.  He said taxpayers need to know what types of issues are being grieved, and how the Board deals with those issues.  He said if the Union makes “unnecessary” grievances, the Town has a right to know.  He suggested Town Counsel and Labor Counsel review this issue.

 

Selectman Bond said he agreed with Selectman Andrews on the GMEG issue.  He said this is not a grievance against an individual.

 

Selectwoman Brunelle said this discussion was previously held by a prior Board.  She remembered correspondence from Town Counsel allowing Executive Session for grievances because it has to do with contracts.

 

Selectman Andrews said he would like to find a reason to get it out of Executive Session.

 

Chairman Perkins said people have a right to ask to hear a grievance in Executive Session.  Once the Board finds on it, it becomes a public reference.

 

Jane Lopes said that, previously, grievances were held in open session.  She said, as a result of case law, the Plymouth County DA’s Office now considers this part of the Contract process.

 

Chairman Perkins said, normally, negotiations are a derivative of a grievance.

 

Selectman Bond asked if the wording said it “could” be held in Executive Session, rather than it must be.

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

VOTED:  To write to the DA’s Office to ask for guidance on entering Executive Session to hear a grievance.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Update on Submittal of Departmental Budgets

 

Mr. Healey said he believed all budgets have now been submitted.

 

Town Manager Evaluation

 

See Town Manager’s Report.

 

CORRESPONDENCE

 

v     Bill Taylor, MG&E, sent correspondence regarding a pole hearing that was previously held.  He has met with the abutters as requested by the Board.  He suggested future hearing notices include language for residents to contact the MG&E prior to the hearing if they have questions or concerns.

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

            VOTED:  To incorporate the language.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Selectman Andrews said information should be available at the public hearing.

 

v     Discussion ensued on the FinCom’s schedule to meet with a representative of the Board to discuss the budget.  This was scheduled for tonight.

 

Selectwoman Brunelle went to the FinCom meeting.  When she returned, she said that the FinCom is asking for an estimated figure, from Labor Counsel, to justify the increase in that line item.

 

v     Discussion ensued on correspondence given to the Board regarding snow plowing of subdivisions.

 

Selectman Andrews suggested a policy be developed that would hold the developer responsible if the way has not been accepted yet.  He noted that Mr. Healey directs the roads to be plowed in case of an emergency.  He said besides opening the Town up to liability, it also “lets the developer off the hook”.

 

Selectman Andrews suggested a policy be put in place that would allow the Planning Board to attach to the surety or bond for that subdivision.  He said there also needs to be a special form of insurance for sending our plows onto private property.

 

Chairman Perkins noted that the issue was not with a subdivision, but Woloski Park and Gibbs Road, which are unaccepted streets.

 

Mr. Healey said unaccepted streets are plowed purely from a public safety issue.  He said public safety vehicles need to be able to get down that street.  He said the Town has insurance to cover the plows.  He said the Town has an obligation to the residents to plow these roads.

 

Selectman Andrews said the difference is that subdivisions are intended to become accepted ways.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Andrews and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

VOTED:  To authorize Selectman Andrews and Mr. Healey to work on a policy for plowing subdivisions.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

v     Discussion ensued on correspondence from Town Counsel regarding the sale of the trailer at the Morgan Property. 

 

Upon motion by Selectman Bond and seconded by Selectman Andrews, the Board

VOTED:  To receive payment by April 1, 2005 and allow the trailer to be removed by June 30, 2005.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

Selectwoman Brunelle asked if there was latitude within the bid notification and sale to make the changes, noting there was a second bidder. 

 

Chairman Perkins noted the letter was from Town Counsel.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Bond and seconded by Selectwoman Brunelle, the Board

            VOTED:  To ask Town Counsel if the changes can be made.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

v     The Board received correspondence from David Clemons, Rocky Gutter Street, regarding plowing.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Bond and seconded by Selectman Andrews, the Board

            VOTED:  To ask the Town Manager to investigate and report back to the Board.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

v     It was noted that a TIF Agreement was denied for Holiday Inn Express.

 

Mr. Healey said that he and Ruth Geoffroy had voted in favor, and would like the opportunity to revisit this at another time.  He aid the cost would have been $2,000 over 5 years.

 

Chairman Perkins suggested he suggest this with the Board before taking it back to the TIF Committee.  He said he did not see a reason for granting this.

 

v     The case with “Zippy” has resurfaced.

 

Mr. Healey explained that there was a Court Order for the dog to live out of state.  This has been violated.

 

v     The Board is scheduled to meet with the WMAC on April 11th to discuss the contract with Waste Management.

 

Upon motion by Selectman Andrews and seconded by Selectman Bond, the Board

VOTED:  To direct the WMAC to also post a meeting for that night for a joint meeting, and not meet if there isn’t a quorum.

            Unanimous Vote.

 

 

 

Upon motion by Selectwoman Brunelle and seconded by Selectman Andrews, the Board

VOTED:  To enter into Executive Session at 9:28 PM, not to return to Open Session, to discuss a Grievance, Contract Negotiations, and Litigation.

A poll vote was taken.  Selectwoman Brunelle, Selectman Andrews, and Chairman Perkins approved.  Selectman Bond opposed.

VOTE 3 - 1

 

 

 

                                                           

Diane Henault, Secretary

BOARD OF SELECTMEN