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Select Board Minutes 5/16/12
Members present:        Mark Karlberg, George Fuller, Jeanne Pryor

Others Present: Craig Kleman, Bill Elovirta, Colleen O’Connor, Eva Birkette, John Amato, Bob Gross, Tim Sullivan, Angela Hilton, Patricia Portieri, Brenda Dean

7:00 PM Meeting opened.

Mark asked if anyone from the audience was recording this meeting.  No one is recording.

Select Board’s Comments and Announcements: Jeanne wanted to congratulate the Becket Washington School for being the first school in Berkshire County to be approved as an Innovation School.

Town Administrator’s Report: Craig advised that he attended a MIIA training program and found out that someone could come to the town and conduct a performance evaluation training program free of charge if we wanted.  He will pursue this.

He also advised that our electricity contract with Constellation New Energy will be expiring this October and he has been in touch with a couple of people who can come in to discuss new electricity programs that are available.  He is also looking into municipal aggregation which is a program that is available to the town as well as its residents and he will have a gentleman come in to speak with the Select Board about this.  

The Select Board reviewed the minutes to the last meeting.  George asked why the ambulance director called the Attorney General’s Office regarding Jessie Sullivan’s vacation time.  Craig advised that he took it upon himself to call.  George advised that that was not what he heard.  Craig advised that it is on the agenda and they could talk about it then.  George asked if the Historical Commission could move out of the office downstairs so the police department could use that room.  He thought the HC could move to the Mullen House.  Craig advised that the HC does not want to move out of this office.  The Select Board would like the Historical Commission to come in to speak with them regarding this issue.  George motioned to accept the minutes of May 2, 2012, Jeanne seconded.  All in favor.

Public Input: Angela Hilton advised that she read George’s letter to the editor and thought it was wonderful and advised him that she and the rest of the people with her would be voting for him at the election.  He thanked them.

John Amato updated the Select Board with the Police Chief Search Committee’s work so far in finding candidates for the position of Police Chief.  The committee will be conducting interviews on May 24th, 30th, and 31st and will hopefully have three candidates to present to the Select Board.  The Select Board will wait until after the election to decide when they want to conduct interviews with the finalists.

Craig advised that Tyler Miller, who was appointed a few weeks ago as a part time police officer, did not pass his physical so he cannot start working on the police department right now.  Craig also advised that because he may not be able to start right away, he and the police chief thought that they should appoint someone else since there will be some openings after June 30, 2012.  George asked if the chief spoke with Tyler about this and Bill Elovirta advised that he is aware of this.  George feels that this should wait until a new chief is appointed.  Pat Portieri asked if they received any letters of resignation.  Craig advised that Mike Sawyer submitted a letter of resignation.  Jeanne motioned to approve the Town Administrator’s recommendation to appoint Michael Hunt as a part time police officer, Mark seconded.  Jeanne and Mark are in favor.  George is opposed.  Motion passed.

Craig advised that he received a bid for the design for the highway garage energy efficiency repairs and upgrades.  Briefly discussed some of the work that will be completed and the timeframe in which it will be done.  Craig advised that if we do not approve this soon then the state may take the money back and also the Town’s Green Communities designation.  George motioned to move forward with design and award the Green Communities Grant to Bradley Architects, Inc. for the highway garage energy efficiency repairs and upgrades, Jeanne seconded.  All in favor.

Craig advised that he contacted the Attorney General’s Office regarding Jessie Sullivan’s accrued vacation and sick time while she was out on Workers’ Comp.  The AG’s Office advised that they do not like to get in the middle of this and that it is up to the town whether vacation and sick time is allowed to accrue while someone was out on workers’ comp.  Craig feels that if the town does not have a policy that states that an employee cannot accrue vacation time then Jessie should have vacation time.  Nina found that the Select Board voted to allow her to roll over two vacation days from the previous fiscal year.  These two days and the vacation days that she accrued amount to 22 days.  Craig recommends that the Select Board split it evenly and allow Jessie to rollover 11 days so it does not create a problem for the ambulance director.  Jeanne motioned that due to the unique circumstances of being injured and on workers’ comp. and for the short amount of time left in the fiscal year that Jessie Sullivan be allowed to rollover 12 vacation days, George seconded.  All in favor.

The Select Board discussed appointment of advisors to CDBG Housing Rehab Program.  Craig advised that the Select Board should appoint two advisors to the housing rehab program to review applications and assist Berkshire Housing in its selection of applicants for this program.  Briefly discussed the program and how to find interested parties to appoint.  The Select Board will talk to some people and something will be put in the Country Journal and on the website to try to get interested people to appoint to this program.

The Select Board discussed appointment of committee to deal with Senior Housing Feasibility Site Selection.  Something will be put on the town’s website and in the Country Journal and we will check with Joan Moylan to see if anyone would be interested in being appointed to this committee.

Jeanne motioned to transfer $207 from the Tennis Court Repair Account to the Town Administrator’s Expense Account and to transfer $312 from Town Administrator Salary Account to the Liability Insurance Account, George seconded.  All in favor.

The Select Board reviewed the monthly reports of the Police Department and Citations Issued.  

Any other business: Nina gave the Select Board a Becket Ambulance Department Request for Write-Off report to review. The Select Board would like to find out if the first write-off amount is the total amount owed or if the person paid off a portion.  Nina will check with the ambulance director to see if he could get this answer.  George motioned to send all requests except the first one to the Collection Agency, Jeanne seconded.  All in favor.

Nina advised that the Planning Board is writing Crystal Pond Association a letter asking them to remove the sign they had put up at the entrance to Crystal Pond.  The Planning Board gave them permission to put up the barrier but did not give them permission to put up the sign.

Jeanne asked about the dry hydrants in North Becket Village.  She would like the town to check to see if they are working and if not she would like them to be repaired because it is very important to have a water source in North Becket.  Jeanne advised that Ray Tarjick is looking into the dry hydrants to see which ones need to be repaired or installed and she would like the town to pursue getting this project done.  Briefly discussed the alarm at the Becket Washington School.  The alarm system has only one alarm sound which does not distinguish what the alarm is.  There should be different alarm sounds for fire, water, etc.

John Amato expressed his concern about the moderator’s conduct at the Annual Town Meeting.  He feels that the moderator sets the tone of the meeting and he feels that he was pitting the majority against the minority and feels this is done at a lot of meetings and that is not good.

Reviewed correspondence.

8:40 PM George motioned to adjourn, Jeanne seconded.  All in favor.

Reviewed payroll/expense warrants.

Respectfully submitted,                                                         _______________________________
Nina Weiler, Secretary                                                          Mark L. Karlberg, Chairman

Documents discussed at meeting: