The Harrisville Planning Board held a special meeting at the office of Chesham Consulting, located on Main Street on Wednesday, October 26, 2016 at 7:00 p.m. The purpose of the meeting was to conduct its annual organization review.
Members Present: Sherry Sims, Ned Hulbert, Nick Colony (alternate), Pete Thayer (alternate), Heri Tryba, Courtney Cox, Selectman Andrew Maneval
Members absent: Noel Greiner (alternate)
In the discussions of the meeting, the members noted the following strengths of the Planning Board:
- Procedurally and organizationally, the Board dots I’s and crosses T’s.
- Tackles challenging topics and unpacks dense topics well.
- Keeps sight of the goals of the Master Plan.
- Is a healthy, functioning board. Members take the work seriously and do their homework.
- Board is efficient in its preparation. The atmosphere feels good.
- Housing committee went well, both in producing results and it did not take up PB meeting time until recommendations were presented.
- Meetings are well organized.
- Membership is a good mix and represents the town in a balanced way.
- Members show thoughtfulness in their different perspectives.
- Succession plan works.
- Members demonstrate professionalism, are respectful.
The members also discussed the following developing needs/weaknesses of the Board:
- Need to integrate technology better.
- Need support for board and town committees, ex. Minutes, resources.
- A PT Administrator, shared with other town(s) would provide consistency in the application processes of all boards.
- Need clarity in the acceptance process for applications.
- Board is going through a generational transition with older members making way for newer, younger ones. Need a coaching process for chair(s).
- Members need training, even though they are volunteers acting in good faith, so they can correctly apply rules, ordinances, and RSA’s.
- Bring in ideas and procedures from elsewhere: other towns, state agencies.
- Perhaps have some cooperative meetings with other PB’s in area to learn what they are doing.
- Activate SWRPC more with us.
- Board needs to keep discussing strategic issues of the entire town.
Members briefly conducted a verbal self-assessment of the co-chairs and individual members. This was a positive and thoughtful discussion.
Summary of items for the Board to concentrate on during the next year:
- Training – broad intro training and specific training for various roles.
- Review our priorities
- Improve communication with other boards in town, also with the public.
- While striving to act professionally, remember that we are volunteers and amateurs and that we cannot expect too much of volunteers.
- Involve other members and public volunteers as much as possible to reduce having to involve the four most experienced members in too many committee/special assignments
The meeting adjourned at 7:45 pm