Franklin Selectboard Meeting

March 18, 2020 @ 6:00 p.m.
Town Clerk’s Office/Conference call


Corey Parent called into the meeting to update the board on the status of the Covid-19 situation.  If there is anything he can do to assist, please reach out to him.  Medical and testing supplies are limited at this time and the need for safety is a must and is daily changing.  Open meeting laws have been suspended to hold emergency meetings as needed.  Tax laws are being adjusted and delays being discussed for VT residents.  Peter advised at the MVSD meeting this week, the school district has confirmed they will be delivering free breakfast and lunch to all school kids in every community.  Corey-is the community needs assistance with feeding folks reach out to him for help, there are resources available.  Brooks spoke with Stacey at the Homestead about need for masks for residents, in need of Lysol and hand sanitizer as well.  Smugglers Notch Distillery has changed to making hand sanitizer for sale, due to the shortage.  Corey left the meeting.


Call to order

At 6:13 p.m. Peter Magnant called the meeting to order. The Pledge of Allegiance was waived. 


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


Guests: Corey Parent, State Senator; Chris Ferland, Health Officer


Agenda amendments:  none

Public comment period: none


Reorganization of board: 

·                   Chair: Brooks S/Yvon D nominated Peter Magnant. All members in favor.

·                   Vice Chair: Brooks S nominated Yvon Dandurand

      Yvon D nominated Dave Bennion; Yvon asks to withdraw his name, he has a full plate and is willing to let another member have the position.  Brooks withdraws his nomination, and seconds the nomination for Dave.  All members in favor.

·                   Road Commissioner:  Brooks S/Yvon D nominated Andy Godin.  All members in favor.

·                   Zoning Administrator:  Brooks S/Yvon D nominated Wendy Sargeant.  All members in favor.

·                   Water Commissioner:  Brooks S/Dave B nominated Mike Lawyer. All members in favor.

·                   Planning Commission:  Brooks S/Dave B nominated Clark Hubbard for 4 yr term and Peter Kittell for 3 yr term.  All member in favor.

·                   Zoning Board of Adjustment: Brooks S/Dave B nominated Paulette Tatro. All members in favor. 

·                   Recreation Board:  Paula Tremblay has voiced interest in joining the board.  Brooks S/Dave B nominated Paula Tremblay. All members in favor. 

·                   All other appointments as listed.  Brooks S/Yvon D motion to approve all other individual members of committees as were appointed from previous year.  All in members in favor.

·                   Listers/Auditors: hourly rate of pay was discussed.  Brooks S/Dave B made a motion to pay at $11.00 per hour as of 1/1/2020.  All members voted in favor, motion passed.


Approval of minutes: February 19, regular meeting; Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to approve the minutes as written.  All members voted in favor; motion passed.  March 2, bond informational meeting; Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to approve the minutes as written.  All members voted in favor; motion passed.  March 3, town meeting minutes; Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to approve the minutes as written.  All members voted in favor; motion passed.  The town meeting minutes need to be signed by the board members, they will stop in and sign. 


Review and sign bills: the board was emailed the warrant; summary list of bills to be paid.  They will review the bills when they come into the office next. 


Highway Dept: 

·                   Municipal General Roads permit:  requires reporting from towns annually that they are complying with the state standards of hydrologically connected roads and payment of permit fee.  The permit fee will be due in June.  Yvon D/Dave B made a motion to approve and authorize Peter to sign the permit.  All members voted in favor; motion passed

·                   Dam Safety Rules:  the public comment period is open on-line for input from towns regarding dam safety rules.  The Browns Corner dam is not of significance or of concern at this time.

·                   Pidgeon Hill RFP:  Linda Blash sent an update on the next steps of choosing a firm for design/engineering.  The list of approved At-the-Ready consultants is being updated as of March 28, we would have to complete the contract process by March 28 if we choose a firm now.  The board will wait until after that date to begin the process. 

·                   State Financial Annual Plan:  for the highway budget with VTrans for paying aid to transportation funding to towns.  Reviewed the financial breakdown to be submitted. Brooks S/Dave B made a motion to approve the State Financial report plan.  All members voted in favor; motion passed.

·                   Road & Bridge Standards:  The State standards for 2020 were reviewed as adopted and updated in 2019.  No changes to be made, we will continue to follow the current standards.  Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to adopt the standards.  All members voted in favor; motion passed.

·                   Yvon would like to comment on the purchasing procedure of the highway department.  Need to price shop for large items.  Should contact Charlebois Trucks for truck parts as they are much cheaper on most items and will deliver for free. 

·                   Brooks had a request from Jeremy to forward to the board and town office about highway complaints being sent to him to respond to; such as road posting questions.


New Business:  

·       Town hall roof bid:  The town clerk opened all bids received (3) and read them aloud for the entire board via the conference meeting. 

          Vaillancourt Property Management $34,900

          R & A Enterprises $33,000

          Mountainview Metal Systems $45,000

The board discussed the bids; all bids per the RFP.  R & A Enterprises did the roof replacement at the Town of Highgate this summer.  Yvon D/Brooks S made a motion to accept the bid from R & A Enterprises in the amount of $33,000 to do the roof project.  All members voted in favor; motion passed.

·       Water District financing:  Brooks had a rate from People’s Trust for 20 yr term at 3.95%.  He has spoken with Union Bank and Community National as well.  Lisa will reach out to banks again to see if rates have changed to date. 

·       Covid-19: Pete updated on safety concerns for the elderly of the community.  Chris has resources and information on safety, food resources, mental health and business resources that he will forward to the clerk’s office.  People in need can call the town clerk’s office for resources of contacts for food and supplies.  Chris spoke of resources he has to get hand sanitizer and disinfectant. 

·       Sidewalks:  Pete advised with funds and reserve that was approved for FY21 at town meeting we can look to apply for grants for future projects to complete the town infrastructure.  Thoughts of what projects to do?  Pete suggested from Square Rd going north on the west side of the street, there are not trees to interfere and can look for grants for this portion.  Lisa will look at grants available.  Von Edele has complained of the sidewalks in front of the parsonage, are really bad, he would like to remove them all together.  The board would like to look at before removing any sidewalks. 


Town Clerk Concerns:

·                   Jenny’s Barn catering permits:  Town clerk has received 13 catering permits from the Abbey for events at Jenny’s Barn.  They have been approved by the town clerk. 

·                   Cemetery Contract:  Reviewed the contract written for MMT Lawncare/Mike Rebello II for the Square Rd/Catholic cemetery.  Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to approve the contract for MMT Lawncare in the amount of $2,640.  All members in favor, motion passed.

·                   Tax sale attorney: Tim Hawkins is the attorney choosen by the Delinquent Tax Collector to conduct tax sales and needs to have Selectboard authorization to do so.  Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to approve Tim Hawkins as the attorney for the Town of Franklin tax sales.  All members voted in favor, motion passed.


Old Business: 

·       Zoning Violation discussion:  Wendy submitted a letter to update on the temporary permits that have been issued for those living year round where zoning regulations do not allow for such.   Concerns of the elderly residents living in the camper on Main St and their welfare at this pandemic time.  Chris, Health Officer, will be asked to do a welfare check on them by phone and see about stopping in to check on them.  With the complaints and violations on Hill Rd, most residents contacted have replied to Wendy and worked to resolve issues.   Ryan Larose has not been heard from and with the pending tax sale on him properties; would like to have violations filed in the land records before the sale so that a clear record of violation for seasonal use only is known.  The board approves of this step.


·       VT Rte 236 update:  Town clerk advised the 1111 VTrans permit is complete and has been granted with conditions of other permits needed and traffic plans by the contractor that is hired.  Pete will contact Jim Cota and Oliver Pierson about moving forward and next steps, but there is no hurry as meetings are difficult at this time and work may look to be done in spring 2021.  


Selectboard Folder: none


Member Concerns:

·                   Brooks – with the Covid-19 concerns want to assist the community anyway needed.

·                   Yvon – would like to thank Lisa and Sara for all their work with any needs of the town to make us the board we are, they make things easier.

·                   Peter – all members will try to get into the office on Thursday to sign needed items.



Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to adjourn the meeting.  All members in favor; motion passed. Meeting adjourned at 8:27 p.m.


Next meeting will be April 1st at 7:00 pm via conference call in.


Respectfully submitted,

Lisa Larivee, Town Clerk

March 24, 2020


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

These minutes were approved by the Selectboard at the meeting on April 1, 2020.