Members present: Mark Karlberg, George Fuller, William Cavanaugh
Others Present: Craig Kleman, Colleen O’Connor, Chuck Garman, Purr McEwen, Zina Jayne, Odessa Jayne, Delaney Jayne, Martin Winters, Robert Ronzio, Beth VanNess, Gale LaBelle, Steve Schatz, Kelly & Jeff Jourdain, Emma Jourdain, Catherine Hoak, Marcia Parnell, Ken Smith, Gene Pike, Chris Horton, Karen Karlberg
7:03 PM Meeting opened.
George Fuller asked if anyone from the audience was recording this meeting. Steve Schatz advised that he would be taking photographs at this meeting.
Selectmen’s Comments and Announcements: George asked Bill if he wanted help clearing the brush along the bank by the cemetery. Bill advised that he was able to burn the whole bank years ago but the fire marshal advised that they could not do this any longer. He explained how he would do this. George advised that if Bill was okay with it he would pay someone to come and take care of the brush and he would pay him from his Selectman’s salary. Bill was fine with that. George asked Nina to make sure she orders flags for Memorial Day and to make sure they are made in the United States.
Mark motioned to accept the minutes of the April 6, 2011 meeting as presented, Bill seconded. All in favor.
Public Input: Zina Jayne, director of the Becket Athenaeum, read a statement on behalf of the patrons of the library. The Becket Athenaeum is asking the town to fund $42,000 which is their bare-minimum need. She explained that most other towns receive 80% of their library funding through town appropriation. Less than 1/3 of the Becket Athenaeum’s budget comes from town appropriation. She explained that the library attendance has increased 50% and she also explained some of the programs the library provides. She advised that when she spoke with the Finance Committee they told her they would support the request for $42,000 but she found out that the Finance Committee is only supporting $36,000. Bill advised that when the Selectmen met with the Finance Committee, they were told that
she was okay with the amount of $36,000. Bill advised that the Selectmen were going to do their recommendations later on at this meeting and he would be happy to recommend $42,000. The Selectmen recommended that she come to the Annual Town Meeting so she could speak about the library. The Selectmen stopped public input because there was someone on the agenda at 7:15 p.m. They will resume public input after this item.
7:15 PM Chris Horton, from Berkshire County Mosquito Control, addressed the Board regarding the mosquito control program. He advised that he received many calls from Becket residents that would like Becket to enter into the program again. He read a mission statement to the Selectmen. He has the number of residents that used the program in 2008, 2009 and 2010 if the Selectmen wanted that information. He advised that if the town decided to go back into this program then it would be a five year commitment. Mark feels that the program is useless. He advised that some of their pets got sick from the spraying. Mr. Horton asked what the process would be for the residents to get this program back in town. The Selectmen advised that they would need to submit a petition for an article
to be placed on the warrant but it was too late to do that this year because the warrant will be finalized soon. Mr. Horton will advise the residents that they would need to do a petition for next year’s annual town meeting. He asked if they had any questions. Gale LaBelle advised that she did not know when they would be spraying. She walked out of her house one day and was sprayed in her face and did not even now they sprayed by her house. She would like BCMC to publish in the newspaper where and when they would be spraying.
Public Input continued: Colleen O’Connor read a list that included: the Becket Arts Center, Mullen House, Becket General Store, Becket Athenaeum, Becket Fire Station, Becket Highway Garage and the Becket Washington School, her property at 21 Maple Street and another property on Main Street that have a human health code violations on them. She asked if the Selectmen had read the article in the Berkshire Eagle about the Town of Sheffield. The Town of Sheffield has a water tower for its residents because it had issues with the water. She would like the Selectmen to consider something like this for North Becket. She advised that it would be a quick fix and it would bring all of the properties that are not Title 5 compliant into compliance. George advised that if this does happen, anyone
receiving town water would be taxed on it. She advised that she already spends quite a bit of money to purchase bottled water and also on gas to drive out of town to take a shower.
Bob Ronzio asked George if he would be paying the person to clear the brush by the cemetery from his salary or would he be putting the money back into the town coffers to be paid to this individual. George advised that he would pay out of his own pocket. Mr. Ronzio commended George for doing this.
Catherine Hoak advised that the library is an excellent place for residents, especially students, to go to because it has high speed internet. She has used the computers at the library to open emails that she could not open because she has dial up at her house.
Martin Winters and Delaney Jayne both spoke in favor of the library.
Craig advised that the Selectmen need to award the bid for the Fire Station #2 and Ambulance Garage Energy Retrofit. There were three bids received and R.A.C. Builders was the low bidder. He gave the Selectmen a memo showing what the cost would be for this project and the money available. Mark motioned to accept the bid in the amount of $189,860 from R.A.C. Builders for the Fire Station #2 and Ambulance Garage Energy Retrofit project, Bill seconded. All in favor.
Mark motioned to sign contract with general contractor regarding Energy Retrofit of Fire Station #2 and Ambulance Garage, Bill seconded. All in favor.
Mark motioned to sign contract with architect Pacheco Ross regarding Energy Retrofit of Fire Station #2 and Ambulance Garage, Bill seconded. All in favor.
Craig advised that the Feasibility Study Grant Agreement for Wind Turbine is not finalized yet. He also advised that he was going to change the signatory from his name to the Select Board Chair’s name. Beth VanNess advised that she has reviewed the feasibility study grant agreement and has a lot of questions. She feels that the town is taking a risk and responsibility for something that is not even on town property. She advised that according to the grant, it only covers a minimal amount and the town would need to come up with the rest of the money and it does not have the money to do it. Ken Smith advised that the study will show if it is feasible to put a wind turbine on the property. If it is not feasible then the turbine could be placed anywhere in town that would be feasible. He advised that any money that the town pays out would be reimbursable so it would not be responsible for any costs. He advised that the groups that were involved in the consortium would be
responsible for the cost associated with this grant and the town would not be responsible for one cent. Gale LaBelle advised that the town should have its attorney review this agreement because if the invoices are not handled in a timely manner than the town would be responsible for the cost. She also advised that in the agreement it only mentions Jacobs Pillow Dance Festival and it does not mention the YMCA Camp. She was concerned about this. Beth feels that if something goes wrong with this grant then the town would be responsible for the cost and she feels that the wind turbine should be located on town owned land so that the town could get income from it. The agreement does not state anywhere that the town would receive anything. Bob Ronzio asked where the town would come up with approximately $59,000 up front to pay for this study before it would be reimbursed. Craig advised that he checked with the treasurer and she said that the town
has the funds to cover this until it is reimbursed. Bob Ronzio was concerned that if for some reason the invoices would not get reimbursed then the town be responsible for the cost. Craig suggested that the Selectmen hold off on this until next week and have someone from Jacobs Pillow Dance Festival and the YMCA Camp present and see if they would be willing to commit to this grant. Mark motioned to table signing the Feasibility Study Grant Agreement for Wind Turbine until April 27, 2011, Bill seconded. All in favor.
Bob Ronzio addressed the Board regarding the application for a grant from Mass Broadband Institute for the last mile solicitation. He explained the middle mile that would supply the town hall, Becket Washington School, the fire stations and the highway department with high speed internet. The last mile would be for all of the households in Becket that cannot receive high speed internet. He advised that there is a grant that needs to be submitted before May 18th and he had asked Craig if he could work on the grant application but he is very busy getting the Annual Town Meeting together so he could not do this. Bob is asking the Selectmen if they would approve him completing this grant application. He advised that he would not charge the town for doing this work. The Selectmen
would like to review the grant application before it is submitted. Steve Schatz and Marcia Parnell spoke in favor of this grant. They feel that anything that can be done to get high speed internet into town should be done. Bill thanked Bob for volunteering to put this grant application together but he has asked that if he should need any assistance with this project that he go through the Town Administrator. Bill motioned to accept Bob Ronzio’s generous offer to write the grant from Mass Broadband Institute for the last mile solicitation and to have him bring it before the Select Board before it gets submitted, Mark seconded. All in favor.
The Selectmen reviewed the Annual Town Meeting warrant. Bill motioned to recommend Article #1, Mark seconded. All in favor. Bill motioned to recommend Article #2, Mark seconded. All in favor. Mark motioned to recommend Article #3, George seconded. Bill abstained from voting. Motion passed. The Selectmen reviewed the line items. Bill explained that the Finance Committee has recommended that salaries increase by 1.5% but two of the Selectmen have recommended to increase the salaries by 3%. Bill motioned to recommend $42,000 for the Becket Athenaeum, Mark seconded. All in favor. Briefly discussed the Election & Registration account and the Animal Control Expenses. The Selectmen have questioned why these two line items were reduced so much.
Mark motioned to accept all line items except lines 36 and 128, Bill seconded. All in favor. Bill motioned to recommend Article #5, Mark seconded. All in favor. Mark motioned to recommend Article #6, Bill seconded. All in favor. Mark motioned to recommend Article #7, Bill seconded. All in favor. Bill motioned to recommend Article #8. There was no second. Motion failed. Mark motioned to recommend Article #9, Bill seconded. All in favor. Mark motioned to recommend Article #10, Bill seconded. All in favor. Mark motioned to recommend Article #11, Bill seconded. George voted against this article. Motion passed. Bill motioned to recommend Article 12, George seconded. All in favor. Mark motioned to recommend Article #13, Bill seconded. All in favor. Bill motioned to recommend Article #14, Mark seconded. All in favor. George asked why the highway
department radios were not included in article 5. Craig was not sure why they were not included in this article. He would look into it. Mark motioned to table Article #15, Bill seconded. All in favor. Bill motioned to recommend Article #16, Mark seconded. All in favor. Bill motioned to recommend Article #17, Mark seconded. All in favor. Craig advised that the CBRSD school committee has voted to rescind authorization to establish a stabilization fund so Article #18 can be removed from the warrant. Mark motioned to recommend Article #19, there was no second. Motion failed. Mark motioned to recommend Article #20, Bill seconded. All in favor. Bill motioned to recommend Article #21, George seconded. Mark abstained. Motion passed. Mark motioned to recommend Article #22, Bill seconded. All in favor. Mark motioned to recommend Article #23, George seconded. Bill abstained. Motion passed. Mark motioned to recommend Article #24, George seconded. Bill abstained. Motion
passed. Mark motioned to recommend Article #25, there was no second. Motion failed. Mark motioned to recommend Article #26, Bill seconded. All in favor. Mark motioned to not recommend Article #27, George seconded. All in favor. Briefly discussed the wind turbine bylaws. Mark motioned to table Articles 28 and 29, George seconded. All in favor.
The Selectmen reviewed the application for a Site Plan Approval from Jacobs Pillow Dance Festival for the construction of a new staff housing facility building to replace existing facility that is non-conforming to front setback and a special permit application to allow for a filling station with 2 pumps and awning and driveway around building for easy access and exit at 609 Main Street.
Any other business: None.
9:30 PM Mark motioned to adjourn, George seconded. All in favor.
Reviewed payroll/expense warrants.
Respectfully submitted, _______________________________
Nina Weiler, Secretary George Fuller, Chairman