Oct 282019

Approved Minutes

Braintree Selectboard Meeting 

October 22, 2019 at 6:00 pm


Megan O’Toole, Selectboard Chair Kathleen Juffre-Ernst: resident about bus route

Daniel Burson, Selectboard Member Jim Barlow: Town Attorney, LT 10

Loren Bent, Selectboard Member Paul Hannan: Town Surveyor, LT 10

Charlie McMeekin, Selectboard Member Paul Kendall: Resident, LT 10

Keegan Haupt, Selectboard Member Kelly Braman: LT 10

Mark LaRocque: LT 10

Jeff Masterson, Road Commissioner Aaron LaRocque: Resident, LT 10

Jessie Brassard, Treasurer Zac Freeman: RASTA, LT 10

Holly Jarvis, Admin. Assistant Kevin LaRocque: LT 10

Ms. O’Toole called the meeting to order at 6:00 pm. 

The Board reviewed the agenda, adding a conversation about repairs to a culvert on Thayer Brook Road. 

On motion of Mr. Haupt, seconded by Mr. McMeekin, the Board unanimously approved the minutes of October 8, 2019. 

Citizens’ comments

  • Ms. Juffre-Ernst came to talk about the bus routes. She would like to find a way to have her children picked up by the school bus. She lives on Summit Road (a short private road off from Braintree Hill Road). The section of Braintree Hill Road that Summit Road enters is not a part of a bus route. She read the Superintendent’s email to her regarding his concerns about winter maintenance and turn around options of that section of Braintree Hill Road. The plowing/sanding routes have been planned to work with the current bus routes. It may or may not be possible to find a workable solution.  It was unclear if the school would be willing to consider a change in a bus route if a workable change in the plowing route was found. Ms. Juffre-Ernst was asked to talk to the school some more about it and get back to the Town. 
  • Mr. Freeman asked about the Braintree 3,5,7. He had heard quite a lot of positive feedback, but was wondering if anyone had heard any negative feedback. Ms. Brassard indicated that she encountered some people sitting in chairs at one of the intersections. People on bikes were stopped in the middle of the road talking to the people in chairs, and barely moved enough for her to get by them. She had heard of a few other comments about bikes taking up more than their share of the road. Mr. Freeman indicated that he always reminds the people at the event to abide by the rules of the road. He will make sure that reminder continues to occur. 


  • Mr. Hannan passed around a LiDAR map on which he overlaid the plotting of a number of road layouts. The LiDAR map clearly show that there is currently a course through the woods where Legal Trail 10 had been thought to be; a trail New England Forestry Foundation (NEFF) and Rochester/Randolph Area Sports Trail Alliance (RASTA) is currently using. He found three different layout records that when all three are considered together appear to match up with the legal trail and LaRocque Road quite well. It does appear as if a mistake was made in one of the layout records. This is not uncommon. The method used back when this layout was done involved measuring with a specially designed chain and a compass. The surveyor would note the measurements and directional readings and then the town clerk would copy those notes in the town record books, sometimes years later. On the map he showed the course as it was written in one color and the course with the added section in another. Both courses were purposefully off set from the course that was visible on the ground so that it could be seen as well. The assumption being made was discussed with him and the audience members. It was his professional option that this mistake in the old record isn’t a fatal flaw regarding the legal standing of the trail. The intent of the layout record was clear to him. Following this discussion, the Board asked Mr. Hannan to review the town records to determine if the trails were ever discontinued. He advised that a reasonable search for the discontinuance will be done. 
  • Jeff Masterson provided the Highway Report. The turn arounds were briefly discussed. 
    • Ms. O’Toole made the motion to pay Hilltop Construction the $195,000 for the construction of Tannenburg Bridge, Mr. Bent seconded the motion. There was a lengthy discussion, as the contract was for $190,000, with a clause stating that it could be increased by $5,000 with prior permission if unforeseen circumstances were encountered. Following the discussion the vote was taken and the motion failed (Mr. Bent, and Ms. O’Toole voted in favor, Mr. Burson, and Mr. McMeekin voted against the motion, Mr. Haupt abstained from the vote as Hilltop Construction is his brother’s business). 
    • On motion of Ms. O’Toole, seconded by Mr. Burson, the Board voted in favor of paying the $190,000 to Hilltop Construction now and invite Kolbey Haupt to the next Selectboard meeting to discuss the $5,000 (Mr. Haupt abstained, the other Board members voted in favor.) 
    • The Board discussed the repairs needed to a headwall on a culvert on Thayer Brook Road.  On motion of Mr. Haupt, seconded by Mr. McMeekin, the Board unanimously agreed to ask four contractors for bids instead of advertising it, if that will not cause a problem with FEMA funding for the project. 

Old business

  • Mr. Burson reported that the time period the bidder had to accept the counter bid on the tractor has expired. He will look into putting the tractor on the muni-bid site. 

New business

  • On motion of Ms. O’Toole, seconded by Mr. Haupt, the Board unanimously approved the discharge of the mortgage for The Housing Foundation.
  • On motion of Ms. O’Toole, seconded by Mr. Burson, the Board unanimously approved singing the following documents for the grant in aid reimbursement packet:
    • Operations and Maintenance Agreement
    • Transfer of Ownership Request
  • The Board agreed to support the local collaboration for the Boston Fed’s Working Communities Challenge. The current plan is to focus the funding on expanding the availability of childcare in the area. 
  • On motion of Ms. O’Toole, seconded by Mr. Burson, the Board unanimously approved the payment orders.  

On motion of Ms. O’Toole, seconded by Mr. Haupt, the Board voted unanimously to go into executive session for personnel matters under 1 V.S.A. § 313(a)(1)(B).

On motion of Mr. Haupt, seconded by Ms. O’Toole, the Board voted unanimously to come out of executive session. 

On motion of Ms. O’Toole, seconded by Mr. Burson, the Board unanimously approved the addendum to the personnel policy to change how the full time highway personnel are paid for wintertime standby. 

On motion of Ms. O’Toole, seconded by Mr. McMeekin, the Board voted unanimously to adjourn the meeting at 7:50 pm. 

Respectfully submitted

Holly Jarvis, 

Admin. Assistant