Braintree Selectboard Meeting
Tuesday, April 21, 2020
“In accordance with the recent amendments to Vermont’s open meeting law, and in light of the ongoing public health crisis, this meeting was held via conference call. The public could have accessed the meeting at the scheduled time by calling 802-210-4472.”
Present via Remote Conference Calling:
Megan O’Toole, Selectboard Chairperson Tim Caulfield, Emergency Management Director
Charles McMeekin, Selectboard Member Daniel Burson, Selectboard Member
Keegan Haupt, Selectboard Member
Present at Town Office:
Loren Bent, Selectboard Member Jessica Brassard, Town Clerk/Treasurer
Janice R. Russell, Administrative Assistant Jeff Masterson, Highway Foreman
Ms. O’Toole called the meeting to order by phone at 6pm. A roll call was done to confirm what Selectboard members and citizens were in attendance via teleconferencing.
The Board Reviewed the agenda with Ms. O’Toole requesting the Local Emergency Management Plan (LEMP) be added under New Business and Ms. Russell and Mr. Masterson requested the Municipal Highway Grant Application be removed from New Business.
On motion of Mr. Bent, seconded by Mr. Haupt, the Board unanimously approved the minutes from the Regular Selectboard Meeting on April 7, 2020.
Citizen’s comments are limited to 3 minutes per person with a 15 minute maximum – No citizens attended.
- Highway Report – The Highway Foreman, Jeff Masterson, wants to move forward in procuring next year’s sand stockpile. Under the new COVID-19 Governor’s Guidelines work can begin on projects that require no more than a 2-person crew and who will be practicing social distancing. The projects Mr. Masterson has lined up are mostly outside and the Highway Crew will be in individual vehicles. The Town is lacking PPE’s for the Highway Crew so Mr. Haupt will donate hand sanitizer and Ms. O’Toole will post a request on Front Porch Forum and Facebook requesting assistance on locating face masks.
There is an ongoing issue with a beaver dam on Riford Brook Road that requires a culvert to be cleaned out every two days or so to prevent flooding of the road. A discussion followed on the best option to legally remove the beavers and, although there was no decision on how to remove the beavers the Selectboard provided permission to Mr. Masterson to use his judgement and proceed with the removal.
- COVID-19 – Randolph Area Mutual Aid Network (RAMAN) Updates – Tim Caulfield provided information on what RAMAN has been able to provide to area towns and what will be happening in the future. There is not much happening in Braintree at this time relevant to the CoVID-19 issue. A mailing will be going out to all the residents of Braintree with what assistance RAMAN can provide.
- Treasurer’s Report – Mr. Brassard read her Treasurer’s Report and will be providing it out to the Selectboard members. The Town is below 75% of spending at the end of March. Delinquent Tax Bills have been sent out and another set will go out shortly and there are two requests at this time to convene the Board of Abatement. Dog Registrations are continuing to arrive at the office.
- Hiring of a Zoning Administrator- Mr. McMeekin will continue his efforts to contact potential candidates.
- COVID-19 Follow-up – The Governor’s new COVID-19 Guidelines have stipulated that Municipal Clerks Offices may re-open. The re-opening has to follow strict safety guidelines and after a brief discussion between the Selectoboard, Ms. Brassard and Ms. Russell it was decided that the Office will continue to be closed to the public and limited research access to the vault would be on an appointment basis only and under strict guidelines.
Ms. O’Toole suggested that as the Stay At Home Order is still in effect until May 15th that the Town Office should remain closed and the Selectboard will re-evaluate the closure at each consecutive Selectboard meeting until the COVID-19 pandemic has ended. The other Selectboard members agreed that it made sense to continue with the closure. Ms. Russell will update the Town website, Front Porch Forum and Facebook with the new information.
- Town and Bridge Standards – There are no changes to the Town Road and Bridge Standards from last year.
- Emergency Management Director and Deputy Emergency Management Director Delegation of Authority forms to be attached to the Local Emergency Management Plan. The Delegation of Authority allows the Emergency Management Director and Deputy Emergency Management the ability to act quickly on behalf of the Town of Braintree during a disaster.
On motion of Ms. O’Toole, seconded by Mr. McMeeken the Board unanimously approved the Delegation of Authority to the Emergency Management Director, Timothy Caulfield.
On motion of Mr. Haupt, seconded by Mr. McMeekin the Board unanimously approved with Ms. O’Toole abstaining, the Delegation of Authority to the Deputy Emergency Management Director, Derek O’Toole.
- Local Emergency Management Plan (LEMP) – Mr. Caulfield had provided the newest version of the LEMP and the only changes were the dates of the current plan, contacts and contacts information.
On motion of Mr. O’Toole, seconded by Mr. Burson, the Board unanimously approved the Local Emergency Management Plan dated April 21, 2020.
Payment orders – Mr. Bent, as the only Selectboard attending the meeting at the Town Office, checked and signed the payment orders.
On motion of Mr. Bent, seconded by Ms. O’Toole, the Board unanimously approved the payment orders.
On motion of Mr. Bent, seconded by Mr. Burson, the Board unanimously adjourned the meeting at 6:49 p.m.