Franklin Selectboard Meeting

November 14, 2018 @ 6:00 pm
Town Clerk’s Office


Call to order

At 6:03 p.m. Peter M called the meeting to order. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.


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


Guests: Jeremy Barnum, Highway foreman; Daniel Favreau, VAST representative.


Agenda amendments:  9-new business add accept resignation of Jes Alexant from Water Commission board; 7-Town clerk add estate of M. Silva hearing date.


Public comment period:  Peter advised there was a reporter here today doing a video recording with himself, Stephanie Ho, Kim Maynard, Bob Berger, and Marshall Ploof on the effects of the forced merger on our town.  It will be shown at the State House along with many other towns’ comments and concerns.


VAST permission: Dan Favreau was present to get the board’s permission to use Webster Rd for the snowmobile trail.  This gives us insurance coverage if someone is injured on a town road.  Brooks S/Dave B made a motion to approve the trail agreement and insurance coverage for VAST to use Webster Rd.  All members voted in favor, motion passed.  Peter signed the agreement.  Mr. Favreau exited the meeting.


Highway Department: 

·        Time clock-the highway time clock is no longer working; the board does not feel there is a need to replace it, as there are no concerns.

·        Operation & Maintenance agreement-NRPC – the town received grant funding to purchase roadside shoulder disc equipment to reclaim gravel from the shoulders and the board must sign an agreement of a 10 year commitment to use and maintain the equipment according to manufacturer specs.  Jeremy advised that NRPC will also pay for the town to use the equipment when used on hydrologically connected segments of road as mapped by NRPC.  Jeremy will need to track this use and report to NRPC.  The board signed the agreement.

·        Employee reviews:  Andy advised the community is pleased with the work being done on the roads; the crew is doing a great job.  They are proactive with tasks to be done on roads and keeping the equipment maintained.  Peter states it is nice that they are willing to do extra tasks around town when needed not just the highway work.   Need to be diligent about using safety gear and reflective wear at all times, do not want anyone getting injured.  Andy advised also to be sure to use signs with all work being done; grading, ditching, graveling, ect to keep the public aware that there is activity happening.  Jeremy advised they are still down one truck as trk #1 has been at Clark’s for a week; our crew feels there is something wrong with the transmission and Clark’s does not.  Yvon will speak with Scott Gometz from Allison motor about the concern.

·        Budget discussion – reviewed where we stand to date with FY19 budget and needs for FY20 budget.  Chloride tanks are currently full, the FY19 budget of $18,800 will also be good for FY20; Equipment rental will be broken into two subcategories-rentals and hired to track the different equipment needs.  Gas & fuel was discussed; Yvon states the price is dropping; will look at again in Jan.  Jeremy would like gravel left at $30,000. Blacktopping and sealing will remain the same; Jeremy would like to wait until spring 2020 to do paving as he feels the price will be better at that time of year.  Would like to do Hanna Rd, Stanley Rd/Swamp Rd with grant funds, Gallup Rd.   Will look at building maintenance needs for upcoming budget, may need to replace lower panels of overhead doors; may want to look into a heat pump for heat and that would also reduce the humidity/moisture concern.  Truck payment will be done Nov 2019 (FY20).  Equipment fund allocation will stay at $15,000.  Jeremy would like to ask for forks for the loader; a sand pusher as a loader attachment – about $4,000 and snow pusher – about $7,000 and would like to ask the school to split the cost as the majority of use would be their parking lot. 

·        Internet – The fire department has asked about piggy-backing with us on our internet.  They want to do video trainings and need the internet to do so.  The equipment/booster is about $125 per facility and could also reach the highway garage so they can also have the service.  Lisa will speak with Mike Lawyer about the certainty that it will reach to the garage.  Mike will install what is needed.  The board feels the garage should have internet and email for many things that are sent to the office for them and research of other highway needs. 


Approval of Minutes:  October 17th minutes-Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to approve the minutes as written.   All members voted in favor, motion passed. 


Review and sign bills:  Members reviewed and signed bills.


Town Clerk concern: 

·                       Electric Vehicle Equipment grant- Lisa reviewed the details of the grant and feels we should wait until the April deadline to have time to meet with Mr. Edson  from the State for technical assistance on this project and Vermont Electric as a partner as well. 

·                       Dog complaint: no new follow-up news

·                       M. Silva estate- a hearing date of Nov 28 at 1:30 was received from the court; Yvon will attend on behalf of the town. 


Old Business: 

·                       ATV Ordinance review:  A notice for community and public input has been posted on the website and Facebook for several months.  One community comment was received asking if the town can override the state law to allow ATV’s on Main St (Rte. 120) to access the General Store.   The board does not believe the state will allow that.  The goal of the ordinance is to offer liability protection to the town should there be an incident with ATV use.  Brooks S/Dave B made a motion to approve the ordinance as drafted at the Sept 19th meeting and presented to the community.  All members voted in favor, motion passed.

·                       School land purchase – Lisa presented the survey of the school property on file and copies of the corresponding deeds. Peter will speak with the school board about where the line should be behind the school to encompass their facility and needs.  A subdivision may need to be done of the Westcot property for this transfer, the boards will discuss if an updated survey needs to be done. 

·                       Act 46 lawsuit – Peter advised that school education funds cannot be used for such a lawsuit so the town will need to budget for this.  Need to discuss an estimated projected cost.  Would like to invite the representatives of Franklin and Swanton and our school board to meet on Dec 5th to discuss the plan and possible legislation changes to Act 146. 


New Business: 

·                       Water Commissioner - Jes Alexant, chair of the commission has given his resignation from the board due to health concerns; agreed to be a consultant on the proposed project.  Brooks S/Dave B made a motion to accept the resignation of Jes.  All members in favor, motion passed.  Need to appoint a new member to the Water Commission board; Brooks S/Dave B made a motion to appoint Mike Lawyer to the board.  Mike was a member of the franklin fire district #1 before its transfer to the town, is a village water user and wants to be involved in the department.  All in favor, motion passed.  Lisa will do a “Thank you” to Jes for his commitment to the water district. 

·                       Scoping/design of Main St sidewalk – Peter read the request for proposal draft; should add the parking safety concern of the business district.  Bids due Dec 17th and opened Dec 19th.  Approved to post with changes. 

·                       Town hall curtain & sound system – Dave presented the quotes he had gotten on curtains for the windows.  The quote is from Gordon’s windows for room darkening, fire resistant, energy efficiency and sound control blinds in the amount of $9,557.  The sound systems that were quoted range from $8,477 to $16,000 depending on features and quality.  Need to look at options for echo reduction at street side of building with possible quilts or built wooden features, also were given advice on furnace noise reduction with a change in the duct work.    Lisa will look into grant funding for these upgrades.  Dave also advised the Recreation group wants to use the building for volleyball and pickle ball this winter. 






Member concerns/other business

·        Andy-Fish & wildlife dock is still in the lake; needs to be removed.  Would like to do a haunted house at the town hall for the community.

·        Dave –chair legs/feet have all been replaced

·        Yvon – good to keep the town hall alive and should look at sound system as there are many groups that would use it. 

            -Would like to require the highway crew to have a DOT medical physical annually, even though municipalities are exempt.  Will look at updating the personal policy. 

            -Yvon is meeting with Amanda Holland from NRPC regarding our water source protection plan; considered drilling a well on the town land for a backup water source. 

·        Peter – Dec 5th board meeting will invite state reps and school board regarding Act 46 and Perry Thomas regarding lake aeration project.  Dec 19th meeting we will invite all town departments for their budget presentations.  We will also get pizza and snacks for this holiday get together.  Both will be at the Homestead Felco Rm for better space.

            -The selectboard needs to get and set up the Christmas tree before Nov 24th.  Yvon will donate a blue spruce this year as it has to be removed anyhow.             -Peter would like to send a letter to VTrans regarding the intersection of Main St/Lake Rd/ Middle Rd again asking for an improvement plan in light of the accident there recently. 

·        Lisa asked about the cell service that had been looked into and where we stand with possible towers.  Yvon had not been able to get answers to anything, but we need to discuss with our state reps. 

·        Peter – Thank you to Yvon and his dad for the concrete work in front of the town office for the Christmas tree pad and to Dave for his work at the town hall.


Next meeting date is December 5th @ 6:00 pm at the Felco Rm-Homestead.



At 8:50 pm Brooks S/Yvon D made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Vote taken; all in favor; motion carried.



Respectfully submitted,

Lisa Larivee, Town Clerk

November 15, 2018


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

These minutes were approved at the December 5, 2018 Selectboard meeting.