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February 11, 2008

MEMBERS PRESENT:        Reg Foster, Chairman
Roger Blanchette
Ora Mae Torres
                                Jon Henry
MEMBERS ABSENT: Robert MacFarlane               
Drew Jeffrey            
                                James Grady

ALSO PRESENT:           Dick Heaton
Commencement – Mr. Foster called the meeting to order at 7:20 p.m.

Little Neck Village Expansion Project – Report on lack of OPM bidders
Dick Heaton was present for this discussion.  Mr. Heaton is a consultant who helps cities and towns build or permit affordable housing.  Mr. Foster said no bids were received in response to the December 28 bidders’ conference.  He got in touch with four vendors (three came to the conference, one was interested but did not go to the conference) and asked why they did not submit.  The reasons given included:
·       The way the RFP was written (too complex, too generic, appeared to be boilerplate)
·       Apparent lack of experience of Mr. Foster and Mr. Dawson
·       It appeared that the Town might already have had an applicant in mind
·       The requirements were too complex for a $50,000 bid
·       Lack of time to submit a bid
·       Size of project, age restricted project might cause difficulty in obtaining funding

Mr. Heaton said he had reviewed the RFP and it seemed to be written with an applicant already in mind and for a much larger job.  He said what the Trust is really looking for is someone to write an RFP to select someone to build the project.  

Mr. Foster said he discussed the lack of responses last week with Jon Witten, who assured him that the Trust could ask applicants and non-applicants for advice.  Attorney Witten recommended that it be put out to bid again but told Mr. Foster that is not a legal requirement.   

Mr. Heaton recommended the job be reduced to a much smaller scope, paying approximately $5000; this would be the first of several steps the Trust will have to take.  Selling the development rights to the project and setting up a non-profit organization were briefly discussed.    
Moved by Mr. Blanchette and seconded by Ms. Torres: ~ "The Marion Affordable Housing Trust has reviewed the causes with respect to the failure to receive any bids on the recent RFP to engage an OPM for the Little Neck Village Expansion Project, and has decided not to reissue the RFP. ~The Trust authorizes its chairman to take all necessary actions to quickly engage a qualified, experienced consultant (based on the information we have and without the necessity of another public bid process) to assist the Trust in expeditiously moving the LNV Expansion Project forward, up to and including the drafting of an RFP to select a developer/operator to design/build/fund/operate the Little Neck Village Expansion Project. ~The use of the following funding sources is authorized for this purpose: ~the MAHT's CPA funds or of the Marion/Mattapoisett/Rochester Housing Cooperative funds (total available = $6,187).  If an OPM or Clerk of the Works is subsequently required for the LNV Expansion Project, it will be addressed at a later date. ~VOTE:~ 4-0-0

Approval of minutes – January 14, 2008
The minutes were tabled until the next meeting.   

2008 CPA funds
The final application for 2008 CPA funds was reviewed and discussed.  It was agreed that Trust members will attend the March 5 meeting of the CPC in support of the application.  

Compliance with LNV DHCD Regulatory Agreement
The current regulatory agreement is being reviewed by Erin Bettez of DHCD.  The following items contained in the compliance checklist were discussed:
#7 – Deposit of excess profits from LNV into the Affordable Housing Fund
#8 – Marketing Plan – a draft plan is done and will be sent to Ms. Bettez for approval
#9 – Spreadsheet showing five year rental record – the spreadsheet is done and will be sent to Ms. Bettez
#12 – LNV Policies and Procedures – The policies and procedures have been revised and will be reviewed by Ms. Bettez.

Little Neck Village Caretaker’s Cottage
Mr. Zora has told Mr. Dawson that the heating system in the cottage will need to be replaced at a cost of $4000 - $5000.  After discussion it was agreed that Mr. Henry would go to the cottage and provide an estimate of the cost to replace the heating system.  It was also agreed that Ms. Bettez would be contacted and asked if the cottage can be removed from the SHI and also if CPA funds can be used to replace the heating system.

Housing Related Files
Moved by Mr. Blanchette and seconded by Mr. Henry to allow the secretary to go through the housing files and dispose of whatever is not necessary.  VOTE:  4-0-0

DHCD Reimbursement for Brown Lindquist study
The Town Accountant is following up on the reimbursement.
Accessory Dwelling Unit Task Force
Mr. Blanchette described a recent meeting with the Accessory Dwelling Unit coordinator in Barnstable.  After discussion it was agreed that DHCD would be contacted and asked where funds could be found to implement a local ADU program.  

Site for Habitat for Humanity project
Mr. Henry said the site he was interested in is no longer available.  Mr. Foster said he has been having discussions with the owner of a site located off Spring Street and with Jack Beck of Habitat for Humanity.  

Update on Discussions with Developers
Mr. Foster described a parcel of land that might become available for development of a multi-unit development; the land is owned by the Acushnet Sawmill.  The Sippican Lands Trust owns property on either side of the site and representatives from the Lands Trust have expressed interest in acquiring the land together with the Housing Trust.  

Possible Funding Sources
Community Development Block Grants and the Soft Second Loan Program were briefly discussed.      

Meeting adjourned at 9:10 p.m.  

Respectfully submitted,

Reg Foster, Chairman