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, January 16, 2019

December 10, 2018

SWANTON VILLAGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

SWANTON VILLAGE MUNICIPAL COMPLEX

120 FIRST STREET

SWANTON, VT 05488

 

 

 

REGULAR MEETING

Monday, December 10, 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; Ben Doyle & Cheryl Ducharme, USDA Rural Development; David Jescavage, Swanton Town Administrator; Taylor Wunsch 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:

 

None.

3.      Public Comment:

 

Ben Doyle and Cheryl Ducharme were present for this discussion. Ben thanked the Board and Reg Beliveau for having them. He stated he was in Swanton when they held the Community Visit three years ago. Reg stated that Ben and Cheryl gave a discussion at one of his VPPSA meetings to discuss the Rural Economic Development Loan & Grant Program and he wanted them here tonight to explain this to the Board of Trustees. Ben said this is a Federal agency and their purpose is to promote rural economic development and promote job creation projects in rural communities. He said they invest in housing mortgages, are very active in business development working with non-profits who support small businesses with revolving loans and are also very active in essential community infrastructure such as fire stations, libraries, water and wastewater infrastructures, etc. He said they have 46 different programs at rural development and there are some programs they haven’t used in 20 years. He said two years ago they went to North Dakota and they talked with them about a program they use a lot which is the Rural Economic Development Loan Grant Program. He said this is a loan which USDA Rural Development makes to a municipally owned electric company or an electric coop. He said then the municipally owned power company or coop can re-lend that money to a private business or non-profit organization to do an economic development project. He said a good example of this would be if a company in an industrial park wanted to do an expansion but couldn’t afford it, they could work with the electric company in their community. He said USDA would loan money to the power company and they would then re-lend the money to the company to do the expansion. He said the utility could borrow up to $2 million dollars with zero percent interest for up to 10 years and would have to relend this money to a preselected borrower at identical loan terms. He said the utility isn’t making money on this, it’s making an investment in the economic development of their community. Ben said the benefit to the rate payers is the utility is more stable with a major user in the community.

 

Ben stated he hasn’t done one of these loans in 20 years and said Vermont is very regulated. He said it’s a very popular program in the Midwest and has helped with numerous projects. He said he’s done a lot of homework on this in terms of meeting with VPPSA and Ken Nolan who is very supportive of this. He said they’ve talked with the Public Utilities Commission about this and the Public Service Board as well. He said they would be willing to sit with them and an applicant if one comes of this. He said a lot of utilities don’t want to get involved with this because they aren’t a bank and don’t want to add extra work to their staff. He said some of this could be contracted out. Cheryl stated a utility could work with their Town who has a background with revolving loans, etc. She said the Town could be the fudiciary agent and handle the loan piece of it. She said the utility could add a 1% fee to the loan to cover those expenses. Lynn stated she has concerns because not only does the Village have PUC rules, she asked how the Village would skirt Title 24. She said the Village would still have to deal with the lending laws and having to get voter approval and go out for a bond if the loan is over 5 years. She said the Village is Australian Ballot so whether it’s a 12 month loan or a 20 year loan she needs to go to the Village voters for approval. Cheryl stated she didn’t think the Village could skirt those issues. Cheryl said she believes if the utility borrows a million dollars they didn’t have to get the licensing. Ben said their advice is if they can get one utility to go ahead with this and find that it’s economically beneficial that would be great. He said they are not trying to talk anyone into anything, he said they’re a federal agency who’s seen such great success in North Dakota he said he’d like to see it here in Vermont. Lynn said the Village already has revolving loan funds and are having trouble relending that money out. Lynn asked what happens if they find a customer who wants to do this and borrows the money and then goes out of business. She asked if the Village would be on the hook for the loan and Cheryl stated yes, the Village would be responsible. Lynn said this is a huge concern. More discussion took place regarding collateral and how this process works. Ben said a utility shouldn’t lend to anyone who doesn’t have the collateral to back the loan. Cheryl said USDA Rural Development would assist the utility with the paperwork and look at the borrower along with them. She said they are in this to make good loans and get that money out there for good economic development. Neal Speer stated his concern is this program has been around and available for 20 years but USDA Rural Development hasn’t had one loan go through in those 20 years.

Cheryl said they are seeing all the good this program is doing in North Dakota and they would like to see that happen here in Vermont and in New Hampshire. The Board thanked them for their information and time.

 

4.      Approve and Accept Minutes from the Monday, November 26, 2018 Regular Meeting:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to approve and accept the Minutes from Monday, November 26, 2018 as presented. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Discussion: None. Motion carried.

 

5.      Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Friday, December 7, 2018:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants through Friday, December 7, 2018 as presented. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Discussion: Adam Paxman asked about the payment made to Jack Farrelly Co. for $7297.87. Lynn Paradis stated she believed that was for the live tap on the water line job. He also asked about the payment made to CE Power. Lynn Paradis advised that was for maintenance at the Hydro Plant. Motion carried.

 

6.      Missisquoi Valley Rescue Request Coin Drop for August 17, 2019:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve MVR’s request to hold a coin drop on Saturday, August 17, 2019 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon with a rain date of Saturday, August 24, 2019 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried with two yays and one nay.

 

7.  Fire Department Update:

 

Jason Butler, 1st Assistant Chief, stated that Engine 3 should be completed in late February and have a delivery date of March 2019. He said the ladder truck should be in after that and he is hoping to have both in service by May. He said the Fire Department was presented with an opportunity to bid on a 21’ SeaRay rescue boat the Town of St. Albans had and they have won the bid. He said Star Hose bid $7,000 and won the bid. He said Star Hose would now like to donate this boat to the Swanton Village Fire Department so it can be used for lake/river rescues, etc. He said they can fight fire from this boat if needed and will require a minimum amount of training to do so. Jason also said the boat comes with a 200 HP engine motor and that alone is worth $11,000. Chris Leach made the motion to accept Star Hose’s donation of a 1991 Tri State Sea Ray boat, trailer and 2011 Mercury 200 HP OPTI XL motor. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

8.  2019 Budget Discussions:

 

FIRE DEPARTMENT: Lynn stated the 2018 retirements affected all the budgets because of how she splits their time. He said health insurance is up 1% and that’s the lowest increase she’s seen. She said the property insurance looks to be level funded. She said outside services are up in all departments as well because the Village needs a software update in 2019. She said the two new fire trucks has caused an increase and the Town/Village split is 74/26% based on the grand list. She said she kept salaries the same and they are under budget for the year. She said she put dispatching in for $15,000 for 2019 and said that’s her only unknown item at this time. Lynn said the tax rate for a Village taxpayer versus a Town taxpayer is almost the same. She said it’s approximately .4 cents per thousand for fire protection.

 

HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT: Lynn stated the amount of money to be raised in this department is going down a bit due to the supervisor retiring. She said she has a grant in this fund with a match that’s up a bit and State Aid is the same. She said property insurance is up a bit, they have a new ton truck and workman’s comp insurance is up also. She said they go through VLCT for this insurance and do get a better coverage and dropped premiums. She said they offer a lot of free classes and get their CDL drug testing at no cost.

 

GENERAL FUND: Lynn said this budget is up a by 3.55% because the Village Complex needs a new furnace. She said she budgeted $40,000 for maintenance for electric, water and sewer. The 2018 budget was 0.0787 compared to 2019 at 0.0816 for a change of .0029.

 

POLICE DEPARTMENT: Lynn said this budget is up a little too because of a change in insurance plans.  She said they need a new cruiser for the K-9 unit. Eugene LaBombard stated he thought the department told the Board they would use an old cruiser for the K-9 when they got the dog. Chris Leach said he thought they were told the same thing also. The budget for 2018 was 0.3834 compared to 2019 at 0.4130, for a change of 0.0296.

 

COMMERCIAL BUILDING FUND: Lynn said  all she has in this fund is the Revolving Loan Fund and the $6000 payment from the Central School loan each year.

 

ELECTRIC DEPARTMENT: Lynn said residential sales are down in this fund because of energy efficiency and because of solar. She said between residential and commercial solar they are paying out over $300,000 annually in credits. She said this budget is very similar to last year. She said they are caught up in maintenance at the plant. She said retirement affected this department as well and she has budgeted for a lineman to be hired in March. She said Invoice Cloud charges are up for running credit card payments and health insurance stayed level funded.

 

WATER DEPARTMENT: Lynn said she doesn’t anticipate a rate increase in this department for 2019. She said they had an increase in property insurance also.

 

SEWER DEPARTMENT: Lynn said she may need a rate increase in the sewer department. She said they have two special sewer accounts and because of the phosphorus issues out there they may be looking at a plant upgrade in the near future.

 

SUMMARY: Lynn said the 2018 tax rate was 0.8267 and the 2019 estimated tax rate is 0.8806 for a difference of 0.0539 which is a 6.52% increase.

 

The Board thanked Lynn for this first round of budgets.

 

9.  Any Other Necessary Business:

 

Adam Paxman said he would like to make a change to the coin drop policy and that would be if you were approved to hold a coin drop in 2018 you would need to skip a year before you can request another one. Eugene LaBombard stated he isn’t hearing from groups that they can’t get in. Dianne Day, Village Clerk, stated she isn’t hearing that either but said she would keep track of it for him and see if it’s a problem.

 

Any Other Business: Reg Beliveau stated he was asked about placing the Playground Fund sign out front and the Board advised him to check with the Zoning office first to see if a permit was required. Reg said he would look into it.

 

Any Other Business: Chris Leach stated he saw a lady skating on the rink today and said how nice it looked in the park.

 

Reg Beliveau stated he would need an Executive Session to discuss Contracts.

 

11.  Executive Session If Necessary:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to enter into Executive Session at 9:37 p.m. to discuss Contracts. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

 

Chris Leach made the motion to exit Executive Session at 10:30 p.m. Adam Paxman seconded. Motion carried.

 

ACTION TAKEN: None.

 

12. Adjournment:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of Trustees meeting at 10:30 p.m. Chris Leach seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 10:30 p.m. Motion carried.

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          _______________________________________

Neal Speer, Village President                           Date

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          ___________________________________

Dianne Day, Village Clerk                               Date

 

 

Sunday, December 16, 2018

November 26, 2018

SWANTON VILLAGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

SWANTON VILLAGE MUNICIPAL COMPLEX

120 FIRST STREET

SWANTON, VT 05488

 

 

 

REGULAR MEETING

Monday, November 26, 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; Betsy Fournier, Liza Cominsky, Swanton Recreation; 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:

 

Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, stated he would need an Executive Session to discuss personnel.

3.      Public Comment:

 

Betsy Fournier from Swanton Recreation introduced Liza Cominsky to the Board as the Recreation Department’s new program director. Betsy stated they were here tonight to ask permission to set up a skating rink in the Village Green. She said they have the lumber from the last one they had, which measures 90’x90’. She stated they would like to put it between the bandstand and the swan pond. She stated she feels it will be better utilized if it were in the Village Green and said she thought it would benefit local businesses as well. She said she would like to put in a few benches or picnic tables for people to put their skates on. She said she is asking for help from the Fire Department to fill it and help from Public Works to help with snow removal if they get a lot of snow. Reg Beliveau stated they used to have one in the park and it was located by Lady Liberty and the bandstand on the Church Street side of the park. Adam Paxman asked Betsy if she thought of putting it at Marble Mill. Betsy said she has but thought it would be better in the Village Green because it’s lit up and more flat. She said the park closes at 10 p.m. and they have a sign that list all the rules for the skating rink. Chris Leach suggested they check with the Fire Department and with Public Works beforehand to make sure they are ok with it. Chris Leach made the motion to authorize Swanton Recreation to place a skating rink in the Village Green and to coordinate with the Fire Department and Public Works Department for help with filling the rink and with cleaning the rink. He also made the motion to give Reg Beliveau authorization to move forward with this if everyone was on board. Adam Paxman seconded. Motion carried.

 

Betsy Fournier also stated that the other issue she is there for is the lack of a community space. She said the Recreation Department would like to utilize the Village auditorium but it’s at its maximum as well. She said they have a mixed martial arts class and they are struggling to find a location to hold the class. She said the Recreation Department wants to bring more fitness opportunities to Swanton and they need a space for these classes. She said she has checked with the schools and Nativity Parish Hall with no luck. Chris Leach asked how many people usually attend these classes. Betsy said they have 12 people that consistently attend their yoga class but said they served 900 adults and children last year. Dianne Day, Village Clerk, stated she would check the schedule for the auditorium and see if she could schedule a 6 week class for Thursday evenings.

 

Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, said he wanted to mention that Swanton Village was awarded two Gold Star awards in recognition of his leadership and innovation for wellness policies and practices in the workforce and in the community from RiseVT and NMC. He said it has been easy to say yes to them on different health programs and practices.

 

Public Comment: Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator, stated it is getting close to budget time and she is requesting that Swanton Village budget $5000 for 2019 to be used for different grants she is applying for on behalf of the Village. She said most times there are grants available that require a match and sometimes “in kind” can be used but sometimes they need money for the grant. She also said USDA Rural Development would be attending their December 10th meeting to discuss a loan program that is available to local businesses but the Village would be the coordinator of the loan. She said USDA would be on the hook if a loan was defaulted on not the Village. She said these funds must be used for economic development. Elisabeth also stated now that the Historic Preservation Committee ordinance increased its board members from 3 to 10 she has two community members who would like to be on the Board and they are Glen Gurwit and Fred Wiseman. Adam Paxman made the motion to name Fred Wiseman and Glen Gurwit board members of the Historic Preservation Committee. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

4.      Approve and Accept Minutes from the Monday, October 22, 2018 Regular Meeting:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to approve and accept the Minutes from Monday, October 22, 2018 as presented. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Discussion: Eugene LaBombard asked if Reg found out what the payment to Municipal Emergency Services was for. Reg stated that was for air packs purchased by the Fire Department. Chris Leach also stated that under Any Other Business Eugene LaBombard talked about having a separate line item on the Village Ballot for a new water line to be run under the river. He said this is a very important item and he supports it 100%. Reg Beliveau stated he would talk with the engineers about this proposal. Motion carried.

 

5.      Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Wednesday, November 21, 2018:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants through Wednesday, November 21, 2018 as presented. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Discussion: Chris Leach asked if any other tree services were used other than Gabrees Tree Service. Village Clerk Dianne Day stated occasionally they use another one for smaller jobs. Motion carried.

 

6.      VPPSA Project 10 Site Requests Water Allocation for 101 Lafar Road, Swanton:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to enter into Water Commissioner’s meeting at 7:59 p.m. Adam Paxman seconded. Motion carried. Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve VPPSA’s Project 10 Sites request for a water allocation of 30 gallons per day for the use of a bathroom and a sink at 101 Lafar Road. Adam Paxman seconded. Motion carried.

 

7.  Review and Adopt Sewer Ordinance:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve and accept the Village of Swanton Sewer Ordinance as presented. Chris Leach seconded. Discussion: Village Clerk Dianne Day stated the State of Vermont reviewed the Ordinance and had some proposed changes which were added. Motion carried.

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to exit Water Commissioner’s meeting at 8:06 p.m. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

8.  Transco Subscription Agreement for the Purchase of 2018 Transco Member Units:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve the equity purchase for Transco Member Units and also authorized Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, to purchase any leftover units is available. He also authorized Reg Beliveau to sign all necessary documents pertaining to the Transco Subscription Agreement to Purchase equity. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

 

9.  Swanton Village Police Department Update:

 

Chief Stell informed the Board of how many traffic tickets and warnings were issued for the months of October and November 2018. He said they are still having trouble on Spring Street and Canada Street and that’s where they have focused on. Chris Leach asked how many calls per year they get. Chief Stell stated their calls are up by 2 to 4 % and said they received 2,000 calls for service. He said this does not include traffic stops. Chris also asked how the K-9 program was going and Chief Stell stated his first school starts in the spring but said their K-9 can already track ½ mile with 98% accuracy. Chris Leach asked if the drug problem has improved or worsened and Chief Stell said they have seen a decrease in heroin but an increase in crack cocaine use. He said the drug treatment program in Swanton seems to be helping the situation. The Board thanked Chief Stell for the update and told him to continue the good work.

 

10.  Any Other Necessary Business:

 

Adam Paxman said on behalf of the Swanton Chamber he would like to thank everyone that helped with Christmas in the Park, especially Lynn Billado and Mark Rocheleau for help with decorating. He said they had a great turnout in the park and a great turnout at the after party at the VFW. He said they raised $110 for the community food shelf.

 

Any Other Business: Adam Paxman stated he would like to see the Village bill taxpayers for times per year and said he would like to start this discussion and have this on the Village Ballot for March voting. Chris Leach suggested a pros and cons list be created and Reg stated he would discuss this with Lynn Paradis, Assistant Village Manager, and report back to the Board.

 

Any Other Business: Eugene LaBombard stated he appreciated what he saw on Channel 15 regarding all the great things going on in the Swanton Community and who is behind the scenes working on these programs and events. He said there is a lot of good work going on out there.

 

11.  Executive Session to Discuss Personnel:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to enter into Executive Session at 8:30 p.m. to discuss personnel. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

 

Chris Leach made the motion to exit Executive Session at 9:30 p.m. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

ACTION TAKEN: None.

 

12. Adjournment:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of Trustees meeting at 9:30 p.m. Chris Leach seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 9:30 p.m. Motion carried.

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          _______________________________________

Neal Speer, Village President                           Date

 

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          ___________________________________

Dianne Day, Village Clerk                               Date

 

 

 

Thursday, November 29, 2018

October 22, 2018

SWANTON VILLAGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

SWANTON VILLAGE MUNICIPAL COMPLEX

120 FIRST STREET

SWANTON, VT 05488

 

 

 

REGULAR MEETING

Monday, October 22, 2018

7:00 PM

 

 

 

PRESENT: Neal Speer, Village President; Chris Leach, Trustee; Adam Paxman, Trustee; Eugene LaBombard, Trustee; Reginald Beliveau, Village Manager; 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 Contracts to Executive Session.

3.      Public Comment:

 

Adam Paxman read aloud the Swanton Arts Council Update: The Swanton Arts Council would like to remind local artists that they can post their artist profiles on the SAC website at no charge. Additionally, a free workshop on “Creating Your Best Artist Statement” is being held at the My-T-Fine Restaurant on October 25th. Any artist interested in either posting their profile or attending the workshop should contact the Swanton Arts Council at swantonartscouncil@gmail.com.

 

4.      Approve and Accept Minutes from the Monday, September 24, 2018 Regular Meeting:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to approve and accept the Minutes from Monday, September 24, 2018 as presented. Chris Leach seconded. Discussion: None. Motion carried.

 

5.      Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Friday, October 19, 2018:

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants through Friday, October 19, 2018 as presented. Chris Leach seconded. Discussion: Eugene LaBombard asked what the payment made to Municipal Emergency Services for $39,782.33 was for. Reg Beliveau stated he wasn’t sure and said he would have to look that one up. He thought that might be the cruiser lease payment. Adam Paxman asked about the payment made to Consolidated Electrical Distributors for $1,106.64. Reg said he would have to look that one up as well. Motion carried.

 

6.      Keith & Mary Prescott, 428 Maquam Shore Rd. and Martha & Pat Guarino, 432 Maquam Shore Rd., request permission to connect to the Bonk Water Line:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to enter into Water Commissioner’s meeting to hear the following requests. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

 

Neal Speer, Village President, read the following requests: Keith Prescott is requesting a water allocation for approximately 400 gallons per day for our single family seasonal camp at 428 Maquam Shore Road, Swanton. We have spoken with Bobby Bonk and have his approval to connect to his water line. We are also aware of the $1,500 cost to the Village of Swanton and the cost of the water meter package as well.

Thank you for your time and consideration. Martha and Pat Guarino are requesting a water allocation for approximately 400 gallons per day for our single family seasonal camp at 432 Maquam Shore Road, Swanton. We have spoken with Bobby Bonk and have his approval to connect to his water line. We are also aware of the $1,500 cost to the Village of Swanton and the cost of the water meter package as well.

 

Chris Leach made the motion to approve both water connection requests as presented, Keith and Mary Prescott at 428 Maquam Shore Rd. and Martha and Pat Guarino at 432 Maquam Shore Rd. Adam Paxman seconded. Motion carried.

 

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to exit Water Commissioner’s meeting. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.

 

         7. Discussion on VT Gas Systems Constructing a Pressure Regulation Station on the Beebe Rd:

 

Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, informed the Board that VT Gas Systems will be consolidating the two pressure regulation stations on Robinhood Drive into one pressure regulation station on the Beebe Road. He said this was just for notification because the Village of Swanton abuts their property. Chris Leach stated the Board acknowledges this application and has reviewed it.

 

8.  MVU Varsity Field Hockey Coin Drop Request for May 4, 2019:

 

Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve MVU Varsity Field Hockey’s request to hold a coin drop on May 4, 2019 with a rain date of May 11, 2019. Chris Leach seconded. Discussion: Adam Paxman asked if this was funded by the MVU School budget and asked why they would be asking for more and only hitting Swanton not Franklin and Highgate. The Board agreed that these were good points and said they would address this at the informational meeting in March. Motion carried with two yays, one nay.

 

9.  Any Other Necessary Business:

 

Chris Leach asked what came of the traffic study that was done by Merchants Row. Reg Beliveau stated it definitely slowed the traffic down especially those coming up over the hill. Reg mentioned the vehicle that intentionally took out the hay bales with their vehicle and said the downtown area is videotaped and said they are investigating that incident. Chris Leach asked whose job it is to determine whether or not the traffic pattern needs to change. Adam stated a feasibility study would be next and said himself along with the Economic Development Coordinator are working on that. He said there is a meeting this coming Thursday that has to do with a Better Connections Grant. Reg said there were a lot of ideas that came from the drawings but they were discouraged from doing them by VTrans due to safety reasons. He said shortening the crosswalk by Cody’s restaurant worked well also. Chris Leach said it would behoove them if they had a Route 78 to I89 truck route bypass and that would help alleviate a lot of this traffic downtown. Chris Leach said if the Post Office had a drive thru postal box that would alleviate a lot of traffic as well. Chris also asked if the Hydro Plant was making significantly more power since the new rubber bag has been installed and Reg stated yes they are.

 

Any Other Business: Adam Paxman wanted to let everyone know that Christmas in the Park will be held on Saturday, November 24th from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. and Halloween in the Park will be held Saturday, October 27 beginning at 5 p.m. He also asked if it was too late to consider putting fog lines on Canada Street. Reg said he would have to see what they have in the budget for paving and whether or not they could get that piece of equipment.

 

Any Other Business: Reg Beliveau asked the Board if they would be interested in having Ipads instead of getting emails and paper copies delivered to them at home. They all said no, they receive everything fine. He reminded them if there was a request for public records their home emails would be included in that. They were fine with that and said they like things the way they are now. Chris stated he wanted to thank the Public Works crew for the SLOW stencils on Gallup Court. He said one has gotten washed out a bit but said this has really made a difference and slowed people down. Reg said they are also working on the 30 MPH stencil for Spring Street.

 

Any Other Business: Eugene LaBombard stated he had a complaint about speeding on the County Road and asked Reg to pass that on to the Police Department. Eugene said it may even start on South River Street but said he would like this passed on to them.

 

Any Other Business: Neal stated he would like to thank the Town of Swanton for the work they’ve done on South River Street. He said they have cleaned the river bank up with their new brush hog and it looks great. He said you can now see around the curve and it has made a great difference and he thanks Kevin Lapan and his crew for the great job. Neal also said since it’s getting dark earlier now he’d like Reg to talk with Duane about the lights under the stores on Merchants Row. He said he can’t remember where they’re at with that but said they need some lights under there. Reg said the lights for the bridge just came in and said he would talk with Duane about this.

 

Any Other Business: Eugene LaBombard asked the Board what they would think about putting a separate line item on the ballot in March asking the voters if they would approve putting a new water line under the river. He said he remembers how close the Village came to losing their water line during the flooding in January and said this really should be done. He said they could get a ballpark figure from their engineer and have a spare line available and have this on the upcoming ballot. Reg said he would talk with Wayne Elliott about this.

 

 

 

 

10.  Executive Session to Discuss Customer Account:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to enter into Executive Session to discuss customer account. Adam Paxman seconded. Motion carried.

 

Adam Paxman made the motion to exit Executive Session at 8:35 p.m. Eugene LaBombard seconded. Motion carried.

 

 

11. Adjournment:

 

Chris Leach made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of Trustees meeting at 8:35 p.m. Adam Paxman seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 8:35 p.m. Motion carried.

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          _______________________________________

Neal Speer, Village President                           Date

 

 

 

 

 

 

_____________________________________          ___________________________________

Dianne Day, Village Clerk                               Date

 

 

 

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