This page is maintained by Swanton Village, Inc and is intended to be the official online posting of public meetings and minutes in accordance with Vermont’s Open Meeting law (Amended July 1st, 2014).

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

September 24, 2018

SWANTON VILLAGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

SWANTON VILLAGE MUNICIPAL COMPLEX

120 FIRST STREET

SWANTON, VT 05488

 

 

 

REGULAR MEETING

Monday, September 24, 2018

7:00 PM

 

 

 

PRESENT: Neal Speer, Village President; Chris Leach, Trustee; Adam Paxman, Trustee; Eugene LaBombard, Trustee; Reginald Beliveau, Village Manager; Dianne Day, Village Clerk; Roger Langevin, Candidate for Franklin County Sheriff; Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator and Ch. 16.

 

Unless otherwise noted, all motions carried unanimously.

 

1.      Call to Order:

 

Neal Speer, Village President, welcomed all to the Regular Board of Trustees meeting and called the meeting to order at 7 p.m.

 

2.      Agenda Review:

 

Adam Paxman stated he would like to add a second customers’ account to discuss in Executive Session.

3.      Public Comment:

 

Roger Langevin stated he wanted to stop by and introduce himself to the Board and discuss any issues or concerns they may have. He stated he’s a retired detective sergeant with the VT State Police and was a supervisor in the Intel Division. He explained to the Board his law enforcement career and said he is now working in the St. Albans schools. He said he feels drug education is how they are going to get ahead of the current drug problem. He mentioned the new street crimes unit in St. Albans City and said he would like to see that program go county wide with the Swanton Police, Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and the VT State Police (VSP). He said they need to find a way to work together and said VSP recently received $4 million dollars to help fight the opiate issue. He said he’d like to see a program put together and do a county wide effort. He talked about the number of drug related deaths in 2016 and in 2017 and said these deaths were related to heroin and fentanyl. He said there was a recent drug bust with a 22 year old female being caught with 10,000 bags of fentanyl. He said information sharing is a big deal and said they need it. He said all law enforcement agencies need to work together to address the heroin problem. The Board and Mr. Langevin also discussed ATV issues, speeding cars and working in the school system educating young students about the dangers of drug use. The Board thanked Mr. Langevin for coming in and introducing himself.

 

4.      Approve and Accept Minutes from the Monday, September 10, 2018 Regular Meeting and Public Hearing:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to approve and accept the Minutes from Monday, September 10, 2018 as presented. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Discussion: Chris Leach asked Reg Beliveau if the highway department had gotten the SLOW stencil yet. Reg stated he believed it was in. Chris Leach asked if all dead end streets could be stenciled and requested that Gallup Court be done as well. Motion carried.

 

5.      Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Friday, September 21, 2018:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants through Friday, September 21, 2018 as presented. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: None. Motion carried.

 

6.      Discuss Police Cruiser Lease Options:

 

Dianne Day, Village Clerk, explained to the Board that Lynn Paradis, Assistant Village Manager, received three payment and interest quotes from leasing companies. They are as follows: Municipal Leasing Consultants, 4.71%, $1,240.09 per month; Tax-Exempt Leasing, 4.98%, $1,244.85 per month; and Ford Credit, 6.90%, $1,295.63 per month. Municipal Leasing Consultants has the lowest interest and payment rate, so that is who Lynn is recommending to the Board.

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to authorize the Village of Swanton to accept Municipal Leasing Consultants lease interest rate of 4.71% with a monthly payment of $1,240.09 per month for the Swanton Village Police Department cruiser. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

         7. Any Other Necessary Business:

 

Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator, stated the VT Council on Rural Development will be having their community visit on Wednesday, October 10th. She said there will be Power Week, the Community Visit and a Ducky Derby. She said there is a free community dinner at the Swanton School on Fourth Street at 6 p.m. on October 10. Some of the events being held will be Home and Apartment Energy Improvement Opportunities from 3-4:15 p.m. and Business Energy Improvement Opportunities from 4:30 to 5:45 p.m., both at the Swanton Public Library. There will be Improving Transportation Options in Swanton from 3 to 4:15 p.m. and School/Youth Engagement and Municipal Energy Opportunities from 4:30 to 5:45 p.m., both at the Municipal Complex and Agriculture, Working Lands, and Local Food from 3 to 4:15 p.m. and Lodging, Tourism, Recreation, the Arts, and Marketing Swanton from 4:30 to 5:45 p.m., both at the Methodist Church. There will be a free dinner and an evening forum held at the Swanton Central School. Dinner will be at 6 p.m. and Action Idea Pitches and Final Brainstorming Session from 7 to 8:30 p.m. All members of the Swanton Community are invited and encouraged to join the discussions and free dinner. Reg Beliveau stated he has contacted some local vendors such as Bourne Energy to attend and they will be offering a sale on pellet stoves. He said Chevalier Drilling will be there with some geo thermal units. Reg also said this is a good opportunity for landlords to look into winterizing their rental units and apartment buildings. Chris Leach stated this would be a good time to print a utility bill and have it blown up and explain all the monthly charges on that bill. He also said an information booth set up about the Hydro Plant and the dam installation would be a great idea also.

 

Any Other Business: Reg Beliveau stated he contacted the Vermont Gas company regarding the recent explosions that happened in Massachusetts. He read the following response that he was given by Thomas Murray from the gas company: In light of the tragic events outside of Boston last week we wanted to reach out to the towns we serve and explain why our system is different and safer.

 

From what the NTSB has stated, this system in Massachusetts was an older “low pressure” system operating at a ¼ psi.  On these older, low pressure systems they often do not have pressure regulators (releases) at the homes.  In the course of doing some upgrade work Columbia Gas connected a medium pressure line to this low pressure system. This would have blown out pilot lights on older equipment, the homes could fill up with gas and could ignite.

 

VT Gas has a modern, medium pressure system with redundant regulators on our system and one regulator at every premise. Our system is monitored 7 x24 by our control center in South Burlington.  We are confident that this type of situation could not occur on our system. We are 100% committed to the safety of our customers every day.

 

Here is a link to our website if you get any concerned citizens:

 

https://www.vermontgas.com/important-safety-message-regarding-massachusetts-incident/

 

Don’t hesitate to call if you get other inquiries. Thanks, Tom

 

The Board thanked Reg for that information.

 

Any Other Business: Eugene LaBombard asked about the ton truck lease and asked if it cost more than what was anticipated. Reg stated the price for outfitting the body of the truck was misinterpreted. He said the price they were given didn’t include that and it needed to be done.

 

Any Other Business: Chris Leach stated the water is coming up at the dam. He said he checks it every day and it’s beginning to rise. Reg Beliveau stated generators #2 and #5 are running.

 

Any Other Business: Adam Paxman stated he wanted to give an update on the speeding issue. He said he’s received more emails from residents and he said he is thinking of requesting stop signs be put on certain streets. He said people don’t want that but he doesn’t know what the answer is but said they have to do something. Adding a stop sign would need an ordinance and would take 60 days to go into effect. Adam asked about having fog lines painted on Canada Street. The Board discussed patrolling and getting ticketed. Adam stated he doesn’t feel this would matter to some people.

 

Any Other Business:  Reg Beliveau stated September is National Preparedness Month and said that Dianne Day would be mailing letters to the families affected by the flood giving tips on how to be prepared in case something like the flood happened again. He said there was some great information on emergency kits and what to gather and how to store it in case of an emergency. Chris Leach stated the recognition Reg, Dianne, Tim and Joey received was well deserved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

8.  Executive Session to Discuss Customer Account:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to enter into Executive Session at 8:07 p.m. to discuss customer account. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

Chris Leach made the motion to exit Executive Session at 8:40 p.m. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

ACTION TAKEN: None.

 

9. Adjournment:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of Trustees meeting and Public Hearing at 8:40 p.m. Chris Leach seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 8:40 p.m. Motion carried.

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          _______________________________________

Neal Speer, Village President                           Date

 

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          ___________________________________

Dianne Day, Village Clerk                               Date

 

 

 

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

September 10, 2018

SWANTON VILLAGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

SWANTON VILLAGE MUNICIPAL COMPLEX

120 FIRST STREET

SWANTON, VT 05488

 

 

REGULAR MEETING & PUBLIC HEARING

Monday, September 10, 2018

7:00 PM

 

 

 

PRESENT: Neal Speer, Village President; Chris Leach, Trustee; Adam Paxman, Trustee; Eugene LaBombard, Trustee; Reginald Beliveau, Village Manager; Dianne Day, Village Clerk; John Lumsden, MVUHS Athletic Director and Ch. 16.

 

Unless otherwise noted, all motions carried unanimously.

 

1.      Call to Order:

 

Neal Speer, Village President, welcomed all to the Regular Board of Trustees meeting and Public Hearing and called the meeting to order at 7:04 p.m. Neal asked for a moment of silence to recognize when our country was attacked on 9/11. He asked that everyone keep those families in their prayers and to never forget.

 

2.      Agenda Review:

 

None.

3.      Public Comment:

 

None.

 

4.      Public Informational Hearing – Swanton Village Police Department Applying for Federal Grant:

 

Neal Speer, Village President, read aloud the Public Hearing Notification that ran in the St. Albans Messenger: The Swanton Village Police Department, along with the Swanton Village Board of Trustees, will hold a Public Informational Hearing on Monday, September 10, 2018 at 7 p.m. This meeting will be held at 7 p.m. at the Swanton Village Complex, 120 First Street, Swanton, VT 05488.

The purpose of this Public Informational Hearing would be to acquaint the citizenry about the Swanton Village Police Department applying for a federal grant through the US Department of Agriculture Rural Development Office to help purchase a new police cruiser for their K9 Program, and answering any questions the public may have. Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, stated that the Swanton Village Police Department has decided to apply for a Rural Development Grant through the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to assist them in purchasing a new Ford Explorer police cruiser for their recently established K9 Unit. The targeted purchase time for the cruiser would be for fiscal year 2019. The grant covers up to 15% of the cost of a new cruiser and would incur no cost to Swanton Village to apply for the grant. The grant is designed for smaller rural communities, such as Swanton Village, and is determined by population and average medium income of the residents. The amount of money that the Village of Swanton would be eligible for through this grant is $7458.  Eugene LaBombard made the motion authorizing the Swanton Village Police Department to move forward with this grant application. Adam Paxman seconded. Motion carried.

 

5.      Approve and Accept Minutes from the Monday, August 27, 2018 Regular Meeting:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to approve and accept the Minutes from the Monday, August 27, 2018 regular meeting. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: Chris Leach stated he wanted more clarification on Adam Paxman’s statement about net metering and how the $40,000 in lost revenue affects the existing ratepayers. He also wanted it made clear that the offset between the taxpayers and ratepayers doesn’t come close to the loss. Motion carried with changes.

 

6.      Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Friday, September 7, 2018:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants through Friday, September 7, 2018 as presented. Chris Leach seconded. Discussion: Adam Paxman asked about Warrants #81 and #83. Village Manager Reg Beliveau stated these were pay down payments on a line of credit. Motion carried.

 

7.      Athletic Director at MVUHS John Lumsden Requesting Parade on September 21 to Celebrate Homecoming Week with Band, Athletic Teams and Clubs:

 

MVUHS Athletic Director John Lumsden was present for this request. He informed the Board that in honor of celebrating Homecoming Week the MVU Band, Athletic Teams and Clubs would like to show their support by marching through the Village on Friday, September 21st from 5:45 to 6:45. He said the parade route would be on York Street onto First Street and ending at the Village Complex. Chris Leach asked if they thought First Street was wide enough for a parade. He also wondered where people would park. The Board discussed this and thought residents could park on Canada Street or side streets and walk over to First Street to watch the parade. Mr. Lumsden thought this parade was a good idea to show community spirit and give a positive environment at the school. He said he has talked with Don Gilbert from the Swanton Village Police Department and they are aware of the parade and would give a traffic detail. Mr. Lumsden stated if it rains the parade would be cancelled and not rescheduled. He said they are having a homecoming outside dance that evening as well as fireworks. Adam Paxman made the motion to approve MVUHS’s request to hold a parade on September 21st from 5:45 to 6:45 p.m. from York Street onto First Street and ending the Village Complex. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

8.      Swanton Elementary After School Crossroads Program request Coin Drop for June 22, 2019:

 

Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, informed the Board that he contacted Kathy Kneebone regarding whether or not the After School Crossroads Program was funded by tax dollars. Kathy informed Reg that part of the program was funded by tax dollars but also stated that they are required to do fundraising in order to keep their budget. Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve the Swanton Elementary Crossroads Afterschool Program request to hold a coin drop on Saturday, June 22, 2019 (June 29, 2019 rain date) from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried with two yays, one nay.

 

9.      Request to Hold Halloween in the Park Saturday, October 27, 2018:

 

Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, informed the Board that Rich Kelley is requesting to hold Halloween in the Park on Saturday, October 27. Reg said this is a multi agency event and said they have several vendors who will participate. The Board of Trustees stated they are in support of having Halloween in the Park on Saturday, October 27th.

 

         10. Any Other Necessary Business:

 

Neal Speer, Village President, asked how the cylinder repair went at the Hydro Plant. Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, said it went well and everything is ready to go, they just need water. He said Unit #5 is running at 80% and Unit #2 is running at 50%.

 

Any Other Business: Adam Paxman asked about the coin drop procedure and suggested adding if an organization was approved in 2018 to hold a coin drop then they shouldn’t be allowed to hold one the following year. Chris Leach stated no one has been rejected and Eugene LaBombard stated he understood Adam’s request but said he wouldn’t support it at this time. Adam also asked about the striping on Canada Street and asked if that was something the Village could do themselves. Reg said he would look into that. Adam also asked if the Village had anything in writing about yard sales needing a permit. Eugene stated the Zoning office would have that information. Adam also stated the Chamber of Commerce would like to hold Christmas in the Park on Saturday, November 24th. Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve the Chamber of Commerce’s request to hold Christmas in the Park on Saturday, November 24, 2018. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried. Adam also stated he would like to give kudos to Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, for being named Emergency Management Director of the Year for all his work and leadership during the flood of January 2018. Reg stated that Dianne Day, Tim Girard and Joey Stell were also recognized for their effort as well.

 

Any Other Business: Eugene LaBombard asked Adam Paxman if he has had any more feedback regarding the speeding issue. Adam stated he is still getting responses and will address it at the next board meeting. Chris Leach stated the speed limit on Village side streets can be reduced to 20-25 mph. He also asked if the word “Slow” could be sprayed on dead end streets in the Village. Reg stated he would see if they could find a stencil for that. Neal Speer stated his comment on getting a speed gun with a camera on it was taken out of context. He said this could free up an officer. Reg stated the Police Department was looking into that option. Adam Paxman asked residents to please slow down.

 

Any Other Business: Elisabeth Nance stated she is still looking for input on the Design Downtown campaign she is running along with AARP. She said the deadline is September 21st and she is interested in hearing your ideas. She said so far the most popular idea is installing a roundabout. She said a meeting will be held on October 12 and this is one step in a long process to fix this area.

 

 

 

 

 

11.  Executive Session If Necessary:

 

None.

 

12. Adjournment:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of Trustees meeting and Public Hearing at 7:45 p.m. Chris Leach seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 7:45 p.m. Motion carried.

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          _______________________________________

Neal Speer, Village President                           Date

 

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          ___________________________________

Dianne Day, Village Clerk                               Date

 

 

 

Thursday, September 13, 2018

August 27, 2018

SWANTON VILLAGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

SWANTON VILLAGE MUNICIPAL COMPLEX

120 FIRST STREET

SWANTON, VT 05488

 

 

REGULAR MEETING

Monday, August 27, 2018

7:00 PM

 

 

 

PRESENT: Neal Speer, Village President; Chris Leach, Trustee; Adam Paxman, Trustee; Eugene LaBombard, Trustee; Reginald Beliveau, Village Manager; Lynn Paradis, Assistant Village Manager; Dianne Day, Village Clerk; Leonard Stell, Chief of Police; Gary Centabar and Ch. 16.

 

Unless otherwise noted, all motions carried unanimously.

 

1.      Call to Order:

 

Neal Speer, Village President, welcomed all to the Regular Board of Trustees meeting and called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.

 

2.      Agenda Review:

 

Adam Paxman stated he would like to move Public Comment to the beginning of this meeting and would like for it to be at the beginning of each meeting from now on. Reg Beliveau stated he would like to move Net Metering to the beginning as well.

3.      Approve and Accept Village Minutes from the Monday, August 13, 2018 Regular Meeting:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to approve and accept the Minutes from Monday, August 13, 2018 regular meeting as presented. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Discussion: None. Motion carried.

 

4.      Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Friday, August 24, 2018:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants through Friday, August 24, 2018 as presented. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: None. Motion carried.

 

5.      Public Comment:

 

None.

 

6.      Discussion on Net Metering:

 

Lynn Paradis, Assistant Village Manager, stated the Village of Swanton has two 500 KW net metered projects online and they get their credits each month. She said they have three which are considered group net metered, two of which are the 500 KW projects. She said the Village reads those meters and gives them their credits each month. She said group net metered projects have off-takers which receive some of the credits. She said the Village of Swanton is an off-taker to the project on the Frontage Road along with the Town of Highgate and the Schools. She said depending on what percentage you have, the meter is read, the bill is generated and then the percentages of credit are applied to each one of the off-takers account. She said the other net metered projects receive their credits each month and then they pay the developer of that project back a percentage. She said between all the Village’s solar projects it totals approximately $40,000 per month in credits which is lost revenue for the Village. Adam Paxman stated this $40,000 loss per month goes back onto the Village’s ratepayers and Lynn agreed with this. She said that equates to a 1 to 2 % rate increase if she was to go in for one due to solar. Chris Leach asked how much per kilowatt are the solar customers being paid. Lynn said that depended on the net metering rules and said everyone is different. She said the old projects are 20 cents per kilowatt and the new ones are 15 cents per kilowatt. She said the adjusters drop off after ten years and said the Village is losing the full amount because they aren’t getting that revenue. It’s called load shedding she said. Adam stated the Village is over a half a million dollars in credits being given out each year. Lynn said July and August are around $40,000 per month but for December and January it’s not that much. In the winter months it’s around $10,000 per month. Chris Leach said it’s irritating to him that the people who don’t participate in these solar projects have their rates increased because of it. He said that is not fair. Lynn said the Board agreed to participate in one of the solar projects a while ago and because of that the sewer plant, water plant and complex building are all participants and save money in those departments. She said it’s offsetting for the Village because the rate payers are seeing an increase but the taxpayers are seeing a decrease but said the offset is not close to being equal. Chris stated it doesn’t even come close to what’s being lost and how that affects the rate payers. Lynn said the Village paid the solar company approximately $8600 in July but retained close to $3400 in the water, sewer and general fund. She said at least some of the Village’s departments saw a benefit because the solar projects were coming in whether the Village participated in it or not. Lynn said some utilities are saturated with over 30% of solar customers. She said it’s very important that a ratepayer do their homework and really find out what these developers are telling them for numbers. Reg said he is trying to educate our customers about being a public power utility and when these solar companies come in and try to sell them solar they are like a car salesman. He said educating our ratepayers by giving them the tools they need to make informed decisions is his priority. Lynn said you will always have customers who will switch to solar because it’s green and because it’s new technology even if it costs them a bit more. She said there are other customers who are thinking they’re going to get a better payback than what they actually get. Reg said that VPPSA will be here during Power Week in October and they will be showing how people can make their homes more efficient and better winterized. Chris stated these are the things that can really make a difference in your electric bill each month. He said the reality of solar is that it’s forcing rate increases on those who don’t participate for one reason or another. He said both wind and solar deteriorate over time and must be replaced. He said generators can be rebuilt and often times produce more electricity the older they get. The Board thanked Lynn for coming in and explaining net metering to them.

 

7.      Approve Amended Historic Preservation Commission Ordinance:

 

Dianne Day, Village Clerk, explained to the Board that Elisabeth Nance is requesting a change to this Ordinance. The change is going from a 3 member board to no more than 10 members. Adam Paxman made the motion to adopt and approve the amended Historic Preservation Commission Ordinance. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

 

8.      Chief of Police – Swanton Police Department Update:

 

Chief Stell informed the Board that so far in the month of August they have handled 90 complaints in the Village. He said in July they had 112 calls and issued speeding tickets on Spring Street, Canada Street and Grand Avenue. He said so far in August they are seeing speeding on those same streets. He said they stopped one vehicle going 52 mph on Canada Street. He said once it’s paved it will be worse and said they are targeting those areas. Adam Paxman asked the Chief if the drug scene was getting any better. Chief Stell stated it hasn’t changed any. He said the bigger dealers live outside this area and the smaller quantities are being sold here. Neal Speer asked if the activity at the ball fields has declined or increased. Chief Stell stated there is no increased activity and no less. Reg Beliveau stated he has a grant for lighting and said they would like to light up the back field and also put lights at Marble Mill. Adam Paxman asked the Chief if there was any interest in bringing back “National Night Out” and the Chief said yes they are planning on doing it next year.

 

9.      Discussion on Speeding Issue:

 

Adam Paxman said he asked the public for help and said so far he’s received 12 responses. He said the concern is there and they are willing to help solve it. He said some of the suggestions have been speed bumps, dips, and bump outs. Reg Beliveau stated those would be a paving nightmare. Adam asked the public to continue sending him emails with areas of concern. Gary Centabar said he lives on Canada Street and the speeding is real bad from 5:15 to 6:15 p.m. He said enforcement doesn’t work and suggested they install speed bumps or dips. He said they need to at least try something. Adam stated he will continue to compile information. He said he would like the 50 mph speed sign on Spring Street to be moved to the town line. He thinks that will help make a difference. Adam also mentioned the jake break signs that used to be up throughout the Village. He said the Village was advised by VLCT to remove those signs because you can’t tell a truck driver not to use a particular kind of break. He said this could end up being a safety issue so most towns have removed them.

 

         10. Swanton Elementary After School Corssroads Program request Coin Drop for June 22, 2019:

 

The Board asked if this program was funded by tax dollars and if so they didn’t feel this program should have a coin drop. They asked the Village Clerk to contact them and find out. Adam Paxman made the motion to table this item until next meeting. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

 

11.  Any Other Necessary Business:

 

Chris Leach said the dam installation is done and he said it’s wonderful. He said now all they need is water! He said the MVUHS water line job is also done. Reg said he is having his final construction meeting on Tuesday. Chris said the NEPPA Conference went well and he took away the following information: “Quality, Quantity & Affordability.” He said that should be their theme and they also need to “tell their story”. He said they are not “publicly” owned, they are “community” owned. He said they should have footage of the dam being installed to help tell their story. Chris also wanted to thank the Town of Swanton for the fireworks show at the end of the Arts Spectacular. He said they had a great turnout and he said he also really likes the swan on the bandstand.

 

Any Other Business: Adam Paxman said the Arts Spectacular had a great day. He said the donations received for the free meal will go towards the playground fundraiser. Adam said Darcy Benoit of the Arts Council did a wonderful job on the Arts Spectacular. He also said he attended a Selectboard meeting and they are changing the name of Thibault Parkway to Summer’s Court. Reg said the signs are in they just need to be installed. Adam said there is Church Street behind the Village Green and also a Church Road in West Swanton. He is suggesting they change the name of Church Street to Park Street.

 

Any Other Business: Eugene LaBombard stated he is concerned about the parking situation on Greenwich and First Streets. He asked Reg if they went before the Development Review Board and Reg said no they haven’t. Eugene said the Highway Department should see this and said zoning should also be aware of the large truck being parked on Canada Street across from People’s United Bank.

 

Any Other Business: Reg Beliveau said there was a great article in the St. Albans Messenger about the playground fundraiser. Reg also said Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator, was informed she received the sidewalk grant to place sidewalks from King Street to Brown Avenue. He said not only did they get the grant but the amount was doubled to $48,000. Reg also said the NEPPA Conference went well.

 

12.  Executive Session to Discuss Customer Accounts and Contracts:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to enter into Executive Session to discuss customer accounts and contracts at 8:25 p.m. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to exit Executive Session at 8:49 p.m. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

ACTION TAKEN: None.

 

13. Adjournment:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of Trustees meeting at 8:49 p.m. Adam Paxman seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 8:49 p.m. Motion carried.

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          _______________________________________

Neal Speer, Village President                           Date

 

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          ___________________________________

Dianne Day, Village Clerk                               Date

 

 

 

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

August 13, 2018

SWANTON VILLAGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

SWANTON VILLAGE MUNICIPAL COMPLEX

120 FIRST STREET

SWANTON, VT 05488

 

 

REGULAR MEETING

Monday, August 13, 2018

7:00 PM

 

 

 

PRESENT: Neal Speer, Village President; Chris Leach, Trustee; Adam Paxman, Trustee; Eugene LaBombard, Trustee; Reginald Beliveau, Village Manager; Dianne Day, Village Clerk; Heidi Britch-Valenta, Highgate Town Administrator; Betsy Fournier, Debbie Winters; Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator; Tom Benton and Ch. 16.

 

Unless otherwise noted, all motions carried unanimously.

 

1.      Call to Order:

 

Neal Speer, Village President, welcomed all to the Regular Board of Trustees meeting and called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m.

 

2.      Agenda Review:

 

Adam Paxman stated they needed more information on the net metering item and suggested the Board table this item until further notice. He also stated they would now only need an Executive Session to discuss personnel and could delete customer account.

3.      Discussion and Public Hearing on VCDP Planning Grant 2017 – Heidi Britch-Valenta, Highgate Town Administrator and Jim Harrison:

 

Neal Speer read aloud the VCDP Planning Grant and it read as follows:

VCDP Planning Grant 2017

Public Hearing Notice

Notice of Public Hearing

 

The Village of Swanton and the Town of Highgate are considering making application to the State of Vermont for a VCDP Planning Grant 2017 under the Vermont Community Development Program. A public hearing will be held at 7:00 p.m. on August 13, 2018 at 120 First Street, Swanton, VT to obtain the views of citizens on community development, to furnish information concerning the amount of funds available and the range of community development activities that may be undertaken under this program, the impact to any historic and archaeological resources that may be affected by the proposed project, and to give affected citizens the opportunity to examine the proposed statement of projected use of these funds.

 

The proposal is for the Town of Highgate to be the lead applicant to apply for $45,000 in VCDP funds which will be used to accomplish the following activities: complete a feasibility study to explore extending the Swanton Village Water Line from MVU High School to the area surrounding the Highgate Airport.

 

Copies of the proposed application are available at the Highgate Town Clerk’s office and may be viewed during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Should you require any special accommodations, please contact Dianne Day, Village Clerk at 802-868-3397 to ensure appropriate accommodations are made. For the hearing impaired please call (TTY) #1-800-253-0191.

 

Swanton Village Board of Trustees

Copy Submitted by: Dianne Day

Phone: 802-868-3397

 

Heidi Britch-Valenta stated the Town of Highgate is happy to be engaging in this grant and said it’s a great opportunity. She said this is a small component of a very large project and that is expanding the airport. She said they will be working on hangar and runway improvements and they need a better water source. She said right now they are purchasing water. She said there are seven commercial spaces there and before they solicit business to come in they would like to secure a better water source. She said the Town of Highgate is applying for a feasibility study grant to see if it makes sense to bring water to the airport from the Village of Swanton. Reg Beliveau stated Aldrich & Elliott have been involved and can give them a good idea of what the cost would be to bring water up to the airport. Chris Leach stated this is exciting news and said they have the water capacity to do this. He said Swanton can use some economic growth for sure. Heidi Britch-Valenta stated residents are having to drive one hour or more to go to work and said it would be nice to have businesses here. She said the Town of Highgate is looking at grants and private investors to do this project. Adam Paxman asked if there would be an expense to the Village of Swanton. Heidi stated no, not at this time. Heidi said with the proximity to Interstate 89 and the Canadian border this is a great opportunity. Chris Leach agreed and said this is key for bringing prosperity to this area. Neal Speer stated hopefully this joint effort between Highgate and Swanton will spark the State of Vermont to boost this project. Elisabeth Nance stated that Tim Smith from the Franklin County Industrial Development Corporation fully supports this grant application.

 

4.      Approve and Accept Village Minutes from the Monday, July 23, 2018 Regular Meeting:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to approve and accept the Minutes from Monday, July 23, 2018 regular meeting as presented. Adam Paxman seconded. Motion carried.

 

5.      Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Friday, August 10, 2018:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants through Friday, August 10, 2018 as presented. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Discussion: Chris Leach asked about the $12,088.00 invoice to the City of St. Albans. Reg Beliveau explained that was for dispatching services.

 

6.      Sign SRF Loan Documents for the MVUHS Waterline Replacement Job:

 

Reg Beliveau informed the Board that these loan documents were for the $435,000 MVUHS Waterline Replacement job that the Village voters approved in March 2018. All Board members signed the loan documents.

 

7.      Set Tax Rate for 2018 Village Tax Bills:

 

Dianne Day, Village Clerk, explained to the Board that Lynn Paradis, Assistant Village Manager, has determined that the Village needs a tax rate set at 0.8266 compared to the estimated tax rate of 0.8256 that was printed in the Village Annual Report. Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve the 2018 Village tax rate at 0.8266. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: Adam Paxman stated he wanted all pencils sharpened for next year’s budget. Motion carried.

 

 

8.      Betsy Fournier – Update on Marble Mill:

 

Betsy Fournier informed the Board that she received some good feedback on the survey she generated regarding Marble Mill. She said they are now looking for funds to create a master plan. She said they have talked with Northwest Regional Planning and there may be a municipal planning grant she can apply for. She stressed how much they wanted community input and said they may be able to apply for more funding to implement some changes there. Reg Beliveau stated the grant has a 10% match and the Planning Board would have to apply for it. He said there is a $22,000 grant out there and they would need to come up with $2,200. He said this grant can’t be matched with labor, it has to be cash. Chris Leach made the motion to stand in favor of applying for this grant and to approve the 10% match of $2,200. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator, asked residents to save the date of Sunday, September 2 because they are having an ice cream social at the Marble Mill park. Betsy said she urges any group or individuals to go into Marble Mill, sit there and envision what they would like to see there. She said it’s such a beautiful place. The Board thanked Betsy for the update.

 

9.      Public Comment:

 

Debbie Winters came in to give the Board an update on the new Swanton Playground. First she showed the Board a map of the existing conditions of the elementary and central schools. She then showed a map of what they are planning to implement. She said there are areas that have pavement and they would like to have that removed and replaced with grass. She said she didn’t realize how many times during the winter months the children are not allowed outside to play because there is too much ice on the pavement. She said this would help eliminate that and kids would be healthier getting out in the fresh air more often. She also showed the area by the recreation path and what they would like to do there. She is proposing to put in sidewalks, benches, trees and a mulched playground area so when families are walking the recreation path they have great access to the school’s playground. She stressed this should be viewed as Swanton’s community playground and not just belonging to the schools.

 

Debbie then presented the Board with a pamphlet titled “Together We Will Rebuild Swanton’s Playground.” Some key points mentioned in this pamphlet talk about investing in Swanton’s playground and why it’s important. She said Swanton is on the rise and the Swanton library has become the hub of the community, offering amazing children’s programs and providing new, exciting opportunities for community engagement. Debbie also said the Swanton Enhancement Project and Arts Council have beautified and brightened Swanton with their creativity and inspiring artwork. She said recreational programs continue to expand, and recreational opportunities in the area are being highlighted and promoted. She said the vibrancy of downtown is continuing to expand thanks to the historic restoration project and planned commercial redevelopment. Debbie said she wants to keep this momentum going and provide Swanton’s children and families with a place where they are excited to play, to provide Swanton with another source of pride and show people why Swanton is a great place to live. Debbie listed why this playground is important: It is Swanton’s community playground and a source of community pride. It will provide a gathering place for the community and will highlight what a great place Swanton is to live. Its location on our recreation corridor along with the Fit and Healthy Path and near the recreation fields is the perfect fit. It is within walking distance of Village residents in our population center. It will give our children an exciting place to play which will help improve overall health and wellness. And when completed, this project will achieve two major goals: providing our school with an updated, safe, and exciting place to play, and our community an amazing recreational resource.

 

Debbie stated playgrounds are important to a community because recreational assets create vibrant communities and improve health and wellness. She said that 46% of Franklin Northwest Supervisory Union first, third and fifth graders are overweight or obese. She said 85% of people say proximity to parks and playgrounds is a factor in where they choose to live and 100% of the school board, the Town Selectboard and Village Trustees support this project. Debbie talked about the state of the existing playground and said the first problem is the equipment is decades old with safety hazards. There are large amounts of pavement which cause poor drainage and icing in the winter and surface upgrades are needed to improve soft fall zones. Debbie showed the Board the new playground design and then discussed the project scope. She said they need pavement removal to improve drainage and minimize ice buildup in winter, site work improvements including better grading and improved walkways, landscaping, new playground equipment for both Babcock and Central playgrounds, and improved “front door” and better connection to the playgrounds from the Fit and Healthy Path.

 

Debbie said their fundraising goal is $200,000 and every gift helps! Whether big or small, all gifts will help us achieve this goal. Together we can create a more vibrant Swanton for the next generation. Consider sponsoring or naming a piece of equipment. Contact Debbie Winters at 802-324-2323 or dwinters@firetechsprinkler.com for more information. Debbie said donations may be mailed to: Swanton School District, c/o Swanton Playground Fund, 100 Robinhood Dr., Swanton, VT 05488. Donations may also be dropped off at the Swanton school and village and town offices. The Village Board of Trustees thanked Debbie for her presentation and update.

 

Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator, said she is still working on the $4000 grant to work on the downtown area. She said she is handing out her “Design Our Downtown” maps asking people to design the downtown area how they would like to see it.

 

10.  Any Other Necessary Business:

 

Eugene LaBombard stated he saw the rubber bag inflated today and it looks very good. He said they will be testing it overnight. Neal Speer said all preliminary checks were good and they had no issues. Reg Beliveau said they plugged the inlet and drain in order to test the pressure overnight and then will deflate it one more time so they can torque all the bolts one more time. He said the installation has gone pretty good.

 

Any Other Business: Chris Leach mentioned the dam as well and suggested residents go down and take a look at it. He said it’s very impressive. Reg Beliveau said PC Construction has been doing a great job with public access. Reg said he would be working with the Town of Highgate on their Mill Hill Road Project.

 

Any Other Business: Adam Paxman stated he wanted to thank everyone who helped with the Car Show. He said he was sorry he had to reschedule it to Sunday but had to because of the rain. He said there were 180 cars and they were all great quality and were hard to judge. Adam also stated the Arts Spectacular is Saturday, August 25 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. He said there will be a free meal at 5 p.m. and Jimmy T will play at 6 p.m. and there will be fireworks at dusk. Adam also stated he was upset that the coin drop that was held on Saturday had no signage up, had no cones up and would like for them to get a letter regarding this. He also mentioned the speeding issue in the Village and said he thought of adding stop signs on certain streets. He said he would like input from the community because he’s at his wits ends. He said he sees people driving recklessly. Eugene LaBombard said he doesn’t know what the answer is but said VT is bad compared to New Hampshire and Maine. He said New York is better because they have better patrol. Adam said if anyone has any ideas they can email him at adam.paxman@gmail.com. He said he would like their suggestions and would like to keep it positive. Adam also wished Reg a very happy birthday.

 

Any Other Business: Reg Beliveau said the MVUHS water line job is almost complete and has gone well. He said the old IGA building is now down and you can really see the Memorial Building.

 

 

 

         11. Executive Session to Discuss Personnel:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to enter into Executive Session to discuss personnel at 8:14 p.m. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to exit Executive Session at 8:40 p.m. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

 

ACTION TAKEN: None.

 

12. Adjournment:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of the Trustees meeting at 8:40 p.m. Adam Paxman seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 8:40 p.m. Motion carried.

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          _______________________________________

Neal Speer, Village President                           Date

 

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          ___________________________________

Dianne Day, Village Clerk                               Date

 

 

 

Thursday, August 16, 2018

July 23, 2018

SWANTON VILLAGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

SWANTON VILLAGE MUNICIPAL COMPLEX

120 FIRST STREET

SWANTON, VT 05488

 

 

REGULAR MEETING

Monday, July 23, 2018

7:00 PM

 

 

 

PRESENT: Neal Speer, Village President; Chris Leach, Trustee; Adam Paxman, Trustee; Reginald Beliveau, Village Manager; Dianne Day, Village Clerk; Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator; and Ch. 16.

 

Unless otherwise noted, all motions carried unanimously.

 

1.      Call to Order:

 

Neal Speer, Village President, welcomed all to the Regular Board of Trustees meeting and called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.

 

2.      Agenda Review:

 

Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, stated he needed an Executive Session to discuss customer accounts, real estate and personnel. Dianne Day, Village Clerk, stated she printed the 2nd Quarter SQRP Report to be reviewed under Any Other Business.

3.      Approve and Accept Minutes from Monday, July 9, 2018 Regular Meeting:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to approve and accept Minutes from the Monday, July 9, 2018 meeting as presented. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: None. Motion carried.

 

4.      Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Friday, July 20, 2018:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants through Friday, July 20, 2018 as presented. Chris Leach seconded. Discussion: Chris Leach mentioned the SS VT Solar LLC invoice for $8,059.54. He stated he wanted all ratepayers to know that this money is coming directly out of their pockets and said they could thank their local legislators for this. Motion carried.

 

5.      Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator Update:

 

Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator, gave the Board an update on the Energy Committee’s help to plan the VT Council on Rural Development Model Community visit which will be held October 8 thru 12, 2018. She also stated that the Village of Swanton applied for an AARP Livable Challenge Grant and was one of 1600 nationwide that applied. She said the Village has been awarded the $4000 grant. She said this is a demonstration project of how to fix identified issues and she would like to focus on the north end of the Village Green and the crosswalk to Cody’s Restaurant. She said she would like to see what they can do to make these areas better. Elisabeth also said there are many other options on the table and she would like to get input from the residents of Swanton. She said she has a map of the downtown area and she will be asking residents to draw in their ideas. Elisabeth gave an update on the Better Communities Grant feasibility study, the concrete planters on Grand Avenue and the AARP grant. She said if anyone wanted to help her on the demonstration project they can call her at 466-7142.

 

6.      Update on Rubber Bag Installation at Village Hydro Plant:

 

Reg Beliveau informed the Board that this rubber mat is not an easy piece of rubber to move around. He said it weighs 96,000 lbs and they have been using a crane and two pieces of heavy equipment to move it around. He said a lot of prep work needed to be done on it this past week and it’s heading to the dam site tomorrow. He said PC is on schedule so far with this project and said he would keep the Board updated.

 

7.      Update on MVUHS Waterline Replacement Job:

 

Reg Bealiveau said they have finished coming out of MVU and are now working on Route 78. He said they are progressing good and the only delay has been with the directional bore company. He said they are putting in curb stops at each home as well as at the Town Garage for future connections to the water system.

 

8.      Any Other Necessary Business:

 

Chris Leach acknowledged the Swanton Village 2nd quarter SQRP report. He said the electric customers are properly cared for and the company is financially responsible. He said Swanton Village still has the lowest rates in the State of Vermont. Both Chris and Adam Paxman acknowledged this report.

 

Any Other Business: Chris Leach stated there are several projects happening in Swanton right now. He mentioned the rubber bag, the MVUHS water line replacement job as well as the demolition of the old IGA building. He asked if the municipal building was empty yet and Reg Beliveau stated not yet but would be soon. He said the Teen Center has already moved to their new location.

 

Any Other Business: Adam Paxman said the Car Show was this coming Saturday, July 28th and he is hoping for good weather. Chris Leach asked if there were still spots available if someone wanted to put their vehicle in it and Adam said yes there was. He said all they need to do is show up between 8 and 8:30 a.m. and register. He said all vehicles are welcome. Adam said the Nobby Reed band will be playing after the show. Adam also mentioned the Arts Spectacular show that will be held in the Village Green on August 25 at 10 a.m. He said there will be a meal at 5 p.m., Jimmy T will perform from 6 to 9 p.m. and there will be fireworks at 9 p.m. Adam also asked residents to slow down while driving through the Village.

 

Any Other Business: Neal Speer stated the demolition project is going well downtown and said he looks forward to Gordon Winter’s project. He said there are a lot of memories gone with the old building but said there are new memories coming.

 

9.      Public Comment:

 

None.

 

10.  Executive Session (If Necessary):

 

Chris Leach made the motion to enter into Executive Session to discuss customer accounts, real estate and personnel at 7:46 p.m. Adam Paxman seconded. Motion carried.

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to exit Executive Session at 8:20 p.m. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

 

11.  Adjournment:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of the Trustees meeting at 8:20 p.m. Adam Paxman seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 8:20 p.m. Motion carried.

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          _______________________________________

Neal Speer, Village President                           Date

 

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          ___________________________________

Dianne Day, Village Clerk                               Date