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).

Tuesday, February 15, 2022

February 15, 2022







Tuesday, February 15, 2022

7:00 PM


PRESENT: Neal Speer, Village President; Chris Leach, Trustee; Adam Paxman, Trustee; Eugene LaBombard, Trustee; Reginald Beliveau Jr., Village Manager; Dianne Day, Village Clerk; Matthew Sullivan, Chief of Police; and Channel 16. Via Zoom: Lynn Paradis, Assistant Village Manager; and Joanne Crawford, Abenaki Nation of Missisquoi.


Unless otherwise noted, all motions carried unanimously.


  1. Call to Order:


Neal Speer, Village President, called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.


  1. Pledge of Allegiance:


Everyone stood for the Pledge of Allegiance.


  1. Agenda Review:


Dianne Day, Village Clerk, stated Janet Dimick from SPAN couldn’t make the meeting and will reschedule. She also stated that Joanne Crawford from the Abenaki Nation would be attending via Zoom for a Village Green request.


  1. Public Comment:


Joanne Crawford, Secretary of Abenaki Nation of Missisquoi, would like to request permission to use the Swanton Village Green for a wellness/cultural event on Saturday, June 18th. They would like to reserve June 25th for their rain date as well. She said the event will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Port-O-Lets would be available. Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve Abenaki Nation of Missisquoi’s request to use the Village Green on Saturday, June 18th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., with a rain date of June 25th, for their Wellness/Cultural event. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: Eugene LaBombard asked if this would be similar in size to their Heritage Days. Joanne said no but said they would like to start that event again. She said this will be more informational related and the general public is invited to attend. Adam Paxman suggested she reach out to other organizations for more involvement. He said he would mention it to the Chamber of Commerce at this week’s meeting. Chris Leach also suggested she notify the Village police department so they’re aware of the event. He also stated this would be a great time to highlight their totem pole. Motion carried.


  1. Approve and Accept Minutes from Monday, January 24, 2022 Meeting as Presented:


Chris Leach made the motion to approve and accept Minutes from Monday, January 24, 2022 as presented. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: None. Motion carried.


  1. Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Thursday, February 10, 2022:


Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants #8-#14 through Thursday, February 10, 2022 as presented. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: None. Motion carried.


  1. Swanton Village Police Department Update:


Chief Matthew Sullivan stated the Village Police Department responded to 158 calls for service during the month of January. He said they have a new operating system so this number includes calls for both the Village and Town. He said he is working on separating the data. He said they issued 8 tickets and 22 warnings. He showed the arrests record and said one individual could have received more than one citation. Chris Leach asked if there was any more information on the death on First Street. Chief Sullivan stated he can’t say too much because it’s an active investigation. He said the Village along with Border Patrol were first on scene, secured evidence and realized this would be a very complicated case and contacted VCI (Vermont Criminal Investigation). He said VCI then contacted the FBI for their assistance as well. He said quite a bit of progress has been made and said the general public is not in any danger. He said he’s been very busy the last month with administrative tasks and has added two additional policies to the department. He said he’s been working on the Stone Garden Grant, staffing and scheduling and may potentially hire some part time officers from Burlington. He said one officer he hired is a level 2 officer and is also a liaison in social work. He said he’s been working on a new spreadsheet detailing how incidents were handled by the officers. He said this blotter would be available on a daily basis. He said he’s also been working on getting the officers additional training and that is going well. He said he’s also working on obtaining shields for the department. He said entering an incident without this piece of equipment is very dangerous. Chief Sullivan stated he would also like the Board’s approval to promote Cpl. Kyle Gagne to Sergeant. He said he’s done a fantastic job over the years and has really stepped up. The Board all agreed to this promotion. They thanked Chief Sullivan for his update.


  1. Update on Hydro Plant Relicensing:


Reg Beliveau stated he didn’t have a whole lot to add to this. He said their license comes from the Federal government and they have to get relicensed every 30 years. He said water quality issues are what they are dealing with now. He said Morrisville has already spent $1 million dollars on their relicensing and haven’t gotten approval yet. Reg said they can still get approval without the water quality piece. He said the Agency of Natural Resources wants to see water constantly flowing over the dam for aesthetic purposes. Reg said this would be a loss of revenue for the Village. Reg said he will contact the state, have meetings with their attorney and the Governor if necessary. He said VPPSA is working on this as well. He is going to ask local businesses for letters of support and also talk with the Town of Highgate. He said if they don’t receive their license, they will need to purchase power and it will be very expensive. The Board told Reg they would help in any way needed. He said the Agency doesn’t negotiate very well. Reg also said the Hydro plant produced a lot of energy today and surpassed December and January’s generation. He said he’d like to ask Dan Chevalier from the Hydro Plant to come back in and give another presentation on the work they are doing.


  1. Any Other Necessary Business.


Reg Beliveau said he received an email from Lamoille Valley Rail Trail (LVRT) because Swanton Village has been identified as a key stakeholder in the trail. The letter stated that they are developing a new management plan for the LVRT which will describe the community-defined vision for the trail, outline strategies for the management, maintenance and operations of the trail. It said they are planning a number of focused stakeholder sessions to engage in a discussion of the LVRT. Reg said a meeting is being planned and when he has solid dates he would let the Board know.


Any Other Business: Adam Paxman stated the Chamber of Commerce would like permission to hold their 12th Annual Car Show in the Village Green on Saturday, July 30, 2022, with a rain date of July 31st. Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve the Chamber of Commerce’s request to hold their 12th Annual Car Show in the Village Green on Saturday, July 30, 2022 with a rain date of Sunday, July 31, 2022. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried. Adam also stated his word for the week is ACCOUNTABILITY and said to hold yourself accountable.


Any Other Business: Eugene LaBombard said the road crew is doing a good job with the roads and also mentioned all the water main breaks they have been dealing with. Reg said they are working on Gallup Court again tomorrow and said they try and notify businesses and homeowners when they can but sometimes they can’t.


Any Other Business: Reg Beliveau said he received an email from Sarah Lunn with the Missisquoi River Basin Association offering goats and sheep to eat the Japanese Knotweed at Marble Mill Park. The Board agreed with this and said it was a good idea. Reg said he would coordinate more with Sarah and keep them updated if this is going to happen. Reg also mentioned the storm coming through and mentioned the potential for flooding. He urged everyone to sign up for VT Alerts so they can be informed of emergencies and evacuations. He urged everyone to just be aware.


Any Other Business: Neal Speer stated the Village will hold their Informational Meeting with the Town on Tuesday, February 22 at 7 p.m. at the Village Complex. Discussion took place on whether or not the public could attend. At first the Board said it should be via zoom only but then realized the Annual Warning stated in person or via zoom so the public can attend. They will require masks to be worn.


  1. Executive Session if Necessary:




  1. Adjournment:


Adam Paxman made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of the Trustees meeting at 7:46 p.m. Eugene LaBombard seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 7:46 p.m. Motion carried.




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Neal Speer, Village President                            Date





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Dianne Day, Village Clerk                                Date