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Board of Selectmen Minutes 6/17/09
Board of Selectmen
June 17, 2009
Members present:        William Cavanaugh, George Fuller                                                                                John Murray-absent

Others Present: Richard Furlong, Colleen O’Connor, Beth Van Ness, David Bonney, Bill Brownhill, Maddy Elovirta, Bill Elovirta, Jeff Waite, Bob Cooper, John Hall, Ann Spadafora, Mike Parisi, Al Lussier & others

7:00 PM Meeting opened.  Reviewed minutes.  George motioned to accept the minutes of June 3, 2009, Bill seconded.  Motion passed.

George motioned to issue permit for a one-day liquor license to Pat Parkins for the Summer Solstice event at the Becket Arts Center on June 20, 2009, Bill seconded.  Richard advised that they will only be serving wine at this event.  Motion passed.

Briefly discussed the wine tasting at the Becket General Store.  George motioned to issue permit for a one-day liquor license to Al Lussier for a wine tasting from 6-9 p.m. on June 20, 2009 at the Becket General Store, Bill seconded.  Motion passed.

Public Input: Jeff Waite, of the highway department, addressed the Board regarding the Wage and Benefit Agreement that was issued to the highway department.  He advised that the highway department was told that they would receive a 1.7% increase like the rest of the town employees but the W&B Agreement only shows a .7% increase.  He wanted to know if this was an oversight.  Richard advised that the highway department is already at the maximum pay rate so all they would receive is the cost of living raise which was .7%.  Richard advised that the CPI from Boston was .7%.  He also advised that he currently completed a survey of other Berkshire County towns to see what the highway departments were being paid.  The only town that was making more than our highway department was the Town of Williamstown which was making $.05 more an hour.  Ann Spadafora explained that for many years the highway department was receiving significant raises and had three year contracts which placed them at their maximum rates while the other employees were not receiving comparable raises.  She feels the town is paying very well for the highway department.  She advised that some companies are freezing pay or even cutting pay.  Richard advised that the highway department gets a cost of living raise every year.  Bill advised that if a person reaches their maximum pay rate they cannot exceed that.

Maddy Elovirta presented a conceptual design for Fire Station #1.  The Selectmen reviewed the design and asked questions.

A woman who resides on Fred Snow Road asked questions regarding the Becket General Store.  She asked if the water would be safe to drink and if she could get records regarding this.  Richard advised that anything to do with a public water supply would come from the Department of Environmental Protection.  George advised her that the future owner of the store was in attendance if she wished to ask him any questions.  Al Lussier advised her that the town has approved the opening of the store but the DEP has the final say as to whether it opens or not.  He advised that the State would not approve the opening of the store if there were any issues with the water.  Colleen gave the Selectmen copies of correspondence from the DEP regarding the public water system at the store.  One letter states that the store could not open as a

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June 17, 2009
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food service.  Al advised that he would not, nor would the State; allow the store to open if there was a chance that someone could be contaminated by the water.

George motioned to transfer $3,000.00 from the Planning Board Account to the Fire Department Expense Account; $3,000.00 from the Election and Registration Account to Utilities Expense Account; $856.00 from Veterans’ Benefits to Utilities Expense Account; $214.00 from Selectmen’s Expense Account to Fire Department Expense Account; and $2,260.00 from the Health Insurance Account to the Tax Title Expense Account, Bill seconded.  Motion passed.

George motioned to appoint members to various boards and commissions (see attached list), Bill seconded.  Motion passed.  Richard advised that there is a vacancy for the Harbor Master position but there is someone interested in this position.  Tony Blair will need to interview for this position.

The Selectmen reviewed letter from new resident requesting a reduced fee for the Transfer Station permit.  The Board of Health oversees the transfer station.  Bill is not against this but he feels there should be policy regarding this.  Briefly discussed creating a new fee for residents who are on a fixed income.  Bill advised that the transfer station needs a certain amount to run and if we start discounting the permits it could affect the operations.  Richard advised that you have to be careful about defining what a disability is.  He thought that this should go to Tony Blair and then to the Board of Health.  George motioned to pass this on to the Board of Health and Tony Blair, Bill seconded.  Motion passed.

The Selectmen reviewed the monthly report from the Police Department.

Any other business: Richard gave the Selectmen each a copy of the animal control officer monthly report.

Richard advised that the contractor that was doing the ice storm cleanup has fulfilled his contract and he has decided not to extend the contract.  There is a new contractor that has started.  This contractor has done storm related work in the past and has more equipment to complete the job.  Richard advised that the fallen debris is about 50% completed and the hangers and leaners are about 40% completed.

Richard advised that he did not send a letter to Rep. Guyer regarding the Center Pond Lake District because there was a public hearing already scheduled for the bill.

Richard advised that the contractor is ready to go on the McNerney Road culvert but they are waiting for the demolition plan.  Richard will call Mass Highway about when they would be starting the project.

Briefly discussed issues on Jacobs Hollow Road.  George spoke with a woman that lives on this road and she was complaining about what is happening on a lot where a new house is being built.  He advised her if her issues deal with association rules and regulations then she needs to contact the association.

Briefly discussed placing dry hydrants throughout the town.

Reviewed correspondence.

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June 17, 2009
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8:20 PM George motioned to adjourn, Bill seconded.  Motion passed.

Reviewed payroll/expense warrants.

Respectfully submitted,                                                         _______________________________
Nina Weiler, Secretary                                                          William F. Cavanaugh, Chairman