Select Board Meeting
Thursday, September 8, 2022
Select Board: Andrea Hodson, Pegg Monahan. Absent: Kathy Scott
Attendees: Wilcox and Barton representatives Ross Barton and Brian Campelia, Andrew
Maneval, Sherry Sims, Katie Hamon
The Chair opened the meeting at 7:00 pm.
Agenda and minutes of 9/1-2/2022 – The board approved the agenda as well as the minutes of the previous meeting.
Landfill, Wilcox & Barton – Representatives from the environmental consulting firm Wilcox and Barton met with the board to discuss the recent report they filed with DES on behalf of the Town for the town’s Groundwater Management Permit. Wilcox & Barton is hired by the Town for work formerly undertaken by Golder & Associates.
W&B representatives also shared information about the current industry standards for the presence of PFAS in monitoring wells, and that updated information is expected this December. They will keep the board informed as to any recommendations from DES related to annual monitoring of wells adjacent to the old landfill and the highway barn, or any recommendations involving an impact on the budget.
The board and W&B noted that some funding options are available for property owners with wells found to be contaminated with PFAS.
Fire Department /Town Hall roadside billboard – Pegg Monahan presented recommendations for signage to replace the existing roadside billboard. The town will go before the ZBA on September 21 with an application for special exception and variance due to the town’s zoning ordinances for signs.
Departments and Committees
–Electric Aggregation Committee – Katie Hamon noted, while awaiting PUC rulemaking, the committee has been exploring viable partners and updating town residents via the town website, Common Threads, and SB meeting minutes. The EAC also has been researching how it might help with energy initiatives more broadly, as the topic of energy is a component of the Master Plan. They would like to move to a broader Energy & Electric Aggregation Committee and presented the SB with proposal to do so, seeking SB input and approval. (Click to view EAC Proposal 9-8-2022.)
Andrew Maneval, also a member of the EAC, emphasized the point about the Master Plan and the intention for the document to be updated periodically. The EAC will involve the PB on this. Mr. Maneval endorsed the EAC proposal and recommended SB approval. Any expanded role of the EAC would not involve any authorization to spend town money. It would involve an educational component that would include more than just Community Power, such as the potential opportunity for the town and for residents to reduce overall energy costs and to embark on energy conservation and energy generation projects.
Following discussion, the SB voted to expand the mission of the EAC to include educational component, to implement the mission of the Master Plan, and to explore options for local renewable energy projects for presentation at Town Meeting. Katie Hamon noted that ReVision Energy of Keene has offered to visit town properties and provide estimates for potential projects. The School Board will be invited to participate.
-Broadband, Consolidated Fidium Fiber program – Andrea Hodson updated the board on a recent conversation with Consolidated Communications. CCI has been reaching out to new fiber customers, who signed on for either 1 or 2 year subscriber promotional rates when broadband was launched. Customers who had 1-year contract are now being offered a new fiber service called Fidium Fiber, a Consolidated product, at a lower cost than ongoing rates. The new product requires a new router, which the company will change out. Once CCI has contacted the 1-year contract customers, they will reach out to those who signed on for 2-year contracts.
Information about Fidium fiber is available on the homepage of the town website and Fidium Fiber Informational Brochure.
-Finance – SB signed the payroll warrant in the amount of $20,638.06.
-Police department staffing, continued – The Board reviewed a draft letter to neighboring town select boards requesting interest in exploring shared police services. The chair will revise and send out.
-Town Clerk, Election Day – The Town Clerk has appointed 5 ballot clerks, including Cynthia Stone, Karen Coteleso, Katherine Ogelby, Ranae O’Neil and Marcia Caswell. The board unanimously approved the 2-year appointments. Separately the board discussed logistics for set up and proceedings. The SB will meet at 11:00 during the election.
–Trustees of the Trust Funds – The SB authorized the transfer of $190 from the town’s General Fund to the Cemetery Maintenance Trust.
Correspondence and other business
-Primex has notified the town of the option to participate in the Contribution Assurance Program for the next 3 coverage period years. The CAP Program offers a limit on Workers Comp and Property & Liability coverages. The SB moved to approve participation in both.
Adjournment – The meeting adjourned at 9:15 pm.