Franklin Selectboard Meeting

January 8, 2020 @ 6:30 p.m.
Town Clerk’s office


Call to order

At 6:34 p.m. Peter Magnant called the meeting to order. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited. 


Present: Peter Magnant, Dave Bennion, Andy Godin, Brooks Sturtevant, Yvon Dandurand, Lisa Larivee, Town Clerk


Guests: Jeremy Barnum, Highway Foreman; Jean Richard, Auditor


Agenda amendments:  Add to Old Business-Kevin Lothian/Dick Wright garage discussion of lease; add to New Business-Cat Crusaders funding request.   All members in favor of amendments.


Public comment period: none


Linda Blash-NRPC re: Pidgeon Hill project MPM: Linda was not able to attend tonight.  She has been hired as the Municipal Project Manager (MPM) for the Pidgeon Hill culvert replacement project.  Reviewed the contract that has been written for this work with Linda from NRPC.  The cost for the MPM is $16,000 as submitted with the TAP grant for this project.  Linda will be invited to the Feb board meeting to discuss the RFP for the engineer and contractor.  An article will be included in the warning for the 20% match of the awarded grant.  Yvon D/Brooks S made a motion to approve and accept the contract with Linda Blash from NRPC as MPM for the Pidgeon Hill culvert project.  All members voted in favor; motion passed.  Peter signed the contract.


Approval of minutes: December 18, Brooks S/Andy G made a motion to approve the minutes of the meeting as written.  All members voted in favor; motion passed


Highway Department:

·                       DER appointment: discussed the need to appoint a person or two to be the Designated Employer Representatives (DER) who will administer the Federal commercial motor vehicle requirements for our CDL drivers.  The Town Clerk has registered the Town as an employer on the Federal Clearinghouse site.  Yvon handles this at his work; further discussion to be had at next board meeting.

·                       Moisture concern: Dave spoke with CSI about this concern and options/price to remedy.  CSI suggested a second furnace setup to aid in reducing the moisture in addition to the existing radiant floor heat.  He is coming this week again to review options/costs and discuss further.  

·                       Budget discussion:

o       Gas/Fuel: discussion of year to date usage to last year; about the same and price is comparable.  Yvon is concerned with future cost and the added tax that is being proposed by legislation for next year.  Leave at $25,000.

o       Salt/Sand:  reviewed to date comparison-close to last season.  Would like to see them broken into two lines for better tracking.  Ok as budgeted total.

o       Chloride: Jeremy feels it’s ok as budgeted.

·                       Plow truck: Yvon has spoken to Clark’s on a 2021 International; is the best price for our needs at approx. $190,418 for a complete truck with accessories (dump, plow, wing, tank sprayer).  Discussed approx. trade value of old truck, $26,000 and equipment reserve funds available of $20,000.  Article for $145K.  Pete will sign proposal for purchase; pending voter approval.

·                       Resident complaint:  discussed a complaint of a village resident of highway concerns, increased water user rates, use of town sand/salt by residents. 


Town Clerk Concerns:

·                       Budget review:

o       Town hall line for heat expenses compared with last year to date, ok as budgeted.

o       Emergency dispatch-no assessment received yet.

o       Town hall FY20 article for $9,000 for grant match; if not used before June 30th, may need an article to return to voters.  If Grant is awarded this year, hold in reserve the funds to complete the project. 

o       Reviewed articles to be voted on.

·                       CLA of grand list: CLA at 96.89% and COD 15.23% of grand list per the State of VT notice. 

Discussed the January 23rd public budget meeting and what to present to the voters’ present. 

Discussion of an open MVSD board member seat for next year.

Discussed selectboard seats that are up for reelection and current members interest to continue on the board. 


Warning review: Read the warning and reviewed the wording of articles. 

·                       Lake Carmi article-Pete discussed the state funds available with the “Lake in Crisis” funding that will allocate $20,000 for next two years (2020-21) to assist in covering the utilities/maintenance costs. 

·                       Highway truck article discussed language “highway truck with accessories”.

·                       Discussed the article for the VTrans Rte 236 culverts replacement loan with State of VT ANR for summer 2020 work.

·                       Pete is working with the MVSD board to have a warned school meeting at 9 am before town meeting to discuss any concerns residents may have concerning the school.


New Business:  

·         VTrans Rte 236 culvert replacement: Pete has been speaking with Oliver Pierson from State of VT Lakes and Ponds on a project to replace two failing culverts on Rte 236 that have a significant water quality sensitivity as they flow into Lake Carmi.  There are options for state funding to cover costs of this project, however, the option that would allow for the work to be done asap in early summer 2020 before the phosphorus loading happens would be for the town to get a loan to cover costs from the State Clean Water Revolving Loan Fund with a guarantee from ANR and DEC that the loan will be completely forgiven or repaid with other state funding once it is finalized.  The State will sign documentation as part of the loan that the town is not to be held liable for any repayment of any kind; we are just a place holder for funding the project.

·        Town hall grant acceptance:  Reviewed the Historic Preservation grant agreement and conditions that has been awarded in the amount of $16,500 to with a 50% match for replacement of the town hall roof.  Reviewed the scope of work and RFP for the project to solicit bids.  Yvon D/Brooks S made a motion to approve and accept the Historic Preservation grant agreement and conditions for the town hall roof repair.  All members voted in favor; motion passed.  Pete signed the grant conditions and agreement. 

·        Cemetery mowing bids:  bids were opened by board members for mowing of the Franklin Center/Catholic cemeteries on Square Rd.          

-          MMT Lawn Care-Mike Rebello II; weekly mowing/trimming; debris collected; stones & sidewalks blow off, from April to October for $2,640

-          Marshia’s Lawn Care-weekly mowing/trimming; spring & fall clean up, May to October for $6,600

            Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to approve and accept the contract bid from            MMT Lawn Care in the amount of $2,640 for the Franklin Center/Catholic             Cemetery.  Town Clerk will be in touch with the Catholic cemetery board about             the shared cost.

·        Cat Crusaders:  a funding/donation request has been received from Jamie Rushford, President of Cat Crusaders non-profit group.  They are working with the Franklin County Animal Rescue group to reduce the population of stray/feral cats and rabies prevention with the Trap-Neuter-Return to adoptive homes program.  The board advised they need to follow the same petition protocol for three consecutive years with 5% of voters’ signatures to be included in the tax assessment line of the budget.  Town clerk will advise them of the policy.


Old Business: Kevin Lothian has inquired about the status of the town study grant funding and interest in the property. The town did not receive the grant award. He has a potential client to lease the building for used auto sales and service. He is willing to include a clause in the lease to cancel with notice if/when the town wants to move forward with a purchase.  Pete advised that is fine and we are still studying the options and funding for a future study. 


Review and sign bills: done by board members.


Selectboard Folder: thank you from Laurie’s House for assessment funding.  Health Officer training.   


Member Concerns:

·                       Dave-town meeting tune-up on Feb 8th, he is interested in attending; Yvon is as well, Lisa will inquire with Tim.  Rec Dept and Library as co-sponsoring a presentation of the 251 Club on Feb 22nd.  Inquired about insurance coverage of the historic log cabin and contents-Town Clerk advised it is covered under to town policy.  Phone at the town hall for local calls; what would it cost?   

·                       Pete-LCCA is hosting an Ice Cream Social at the State House again if anyone is interested in being present is support of the town.



Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Vote taken; all in favor; motion passed. Meeting adjourned at 9:34 p.m.


Next meeting will be January 23rd at 7:00 pm at the School Library, Public budget meeting.


Respectfully submitted,

Lisa Larivee, Town Clerk

January 9, 2020


These minutes are not official until approved at the next regular Selectboard meeting.

These minutes were approved at the January 23, 2020 Selectboard meeting.