SWANTON VILLAGE BOARD OF TRUSTEES
SWANTON VILLAGE MUNICIPAL COMPLEX
120 FIRST STREET
SWANTON, VT 05488
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Monday, April 8, 2019
MINUTES NOT YET APPROVED BY
THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES
PRESENT: Neal Speer, Village President; Chris Leach, Trustee; Adam Paxman, Trustee; Eugene LaBombard, Trustee; Reginald Beliveau Jr., Village Manager; Dianne Day, Village Clerk; Karen Drennan, Selectwoman; 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:
3. Public Comment:
4. Approve and Accept Minutes from Monday, March 25, 2019 Minutes:
Chris Leach made the motion to approve and accept Minutes from the Monday, March 25, 2019 meeting. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: Chris Leach asked if there was an update on the new fire truck. Adam Paxman stated they ran into a couple of issues and the delivery has been delayed a little but will be on its way soon. Dianne Day, Village Clerk, updated the Board on the Swanton Public Library’s request to hold a Children’s Farmers Market during the summer. Caleb Rupp informed her that they would hold this once per month in July, August and September on the Library lawn. The Board was fine with this. Motion carried.
5. Approve and Accept Village Warrants through Friday, April 5, 2019:
Eugene LaBombard made the motion to approve and accept Village Warrants through Friday, April 5, 2019. Adam Paxman seconded. Discussion: Chris Leach asked about the payment made to Environmental Resource Association for $858.85 and the payment made to VPPSA for $205,190.98. Motion carried.
6. Discuss and Sign Grant Resolution for Highgate Airport Waterline Project:
Reg Beliveau informed the Board that the Grant Agreement Resolution for the waterline at the Highgate Airport was ready for them to sign. Eugene LaBombard made the motion to sign the Grant Agreement Resolution for funding under the Vermont Community Development Program (VCDP) and for the Town of Highgate to serve as the Lead Grantee and that Heidi Britch-Valenta, Town Administrator, be designated as the Authorizing Official to execute the Grant Agreement and other such documents as may be necessary to secure these funds. Chris Leach seconded. Motion carried.
7. Any Other Necessary Business:
Adam Paxman stated the Efficiency VT program will now be offering free energy audits to home businesses in the area. He said if you are interested in this program to contact him and he will put you on the sign-up sheet. Reg Beliveau said they may begin doing energy audits of homes in May. He also said Efficiency VT will display one of their Zero Energy Mobile Homes this summer in the Village Park. He said these mobile homes are run entirely on solar power. Chris Leach asked if any local contractors were on the list for the construction part of these energy jobs. He said he has heard complaints that they were not and this is concerning to him. He said he wants to know how much of the money the Village pays to Efficiency VT is coming back to our ratepayers. He said he’s done some research and can see that some employees of Efficiency VT are earning a three figure salary and this bothers him. He said he wants that information provided to the Village of Swanton.
Any Other Business: Adam Paxman stated the Chief of Police emailed him an update on the department and also said he will be on the agenda for the first meeting of the Trustees for the next three months. He said Officer Gagne and the K-9’s first round of training is complete. He also said the police department is delivering Meals on Wheels to area residents on Tuesdays of each week. He said they are seeing an increase in speeding complaints and are targeting problem areas. The Chief also said they are planning National Night Out this year which will be held on the first Tuesday in August. He said the police department worked with NMC and helped train school staff on bleeding control.
Any Other Business: Adam Paxman stated he would like to see our Coin Drop schedule posted on the Village website and on Facebook. He also said the Chamber of Commerce will hold another Easter Egg Hunt on April 20th for kids ages 0-11 at 9 a.m. He said he wants to thank Franklin Grand Isle Community Action (CVOEO) for the gracious donation of eggs this year.
Any Other Business: Adam Paxman read the following update from the Swanton Arts Council: In March we participated in the National Youth Art Month, by holding our Fourth Annual Youth Art Show. This year we had over 250 pieces of local student art work. We also had participants from students outside of the Franklin Northwest Supervisory Union district. On April 6th, our Spring Handmade Craft Show was held. A big thank you to community members who came out to support the more than 30 artisans and handcrafters in our annual Spring Craft Show. We expanded to 2 buildings and the show was well received. Special thanks to Holy Trinity Church and the United Methodist Church for hosting us. We are grateful to live in a community who supports creativity. In May we will announce the winner of the Emerging Artist Award. We had more participants competing this year. Some SAC members plan to participate in the 26th Annual Art on the Refuge show hosted by Friends of Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge beginning May 17, 2019, the day before World Migratory Bird Day. Please come to the refuge on May 17th at 5:30 p.m. to support local artist. The art display will be showcased through July 19th. SAC meetings are held on the first Monday of each month at the Swanton House of Pizza. All are welcome.
Any Other Business: Adam Paxman stated the Memorial Day Parade committee is starting a “Sponsor A Flag” event where an individual can honor a U.S. Military Veteran from any branch of the military either living or deceased by sponsoring a 3’x5’ quality American flag (made in the USA) displayed on a 9’ tall pole. Each pole will have a laminated 3”x5” card attached to it displaying the name, rank and branch of service of the veteran and another laminated 3”x5” card displaying the name and town of the sponsor(s). The flags will be displayed on the north end of the Village Park for several days during the Memorial Day weekend. They will be arranged in rows like a military formation. Each flag and pole will have a number that corresponds to the sponsor and future display on each subsequent Memorial Day. All U.S. veterans from Swanton and northwestern Vermont may be honored with a flag sponsorship for a one-time fee of $50. If you would like to sponsor a flag for a veteran, please visit the Town of Swanton’s website for a sponsor form or stop by the Town office.
Any Other Business: Chris Leach stated the ice rink the Village park was a great success and he hopes they do it again next year. He also asked if any progress has been made on the lighting issue at Merchants Row. Reg Beliveau stated this kind of fell off the radar but said he would talk with Duane Couture and get the ball rolling again on this issue. Neal Speer stated it is very dark over there and suggested the lights on the front of the building have goosenecks added to them.
Any Other Business: Chris Leach said the hydro plant didn’t have to deflate the dam too much lately but said he was concerned about how high the VPPSA bill was for purchase power. Eugene LaBombard stated he hasn’t seen a report lately on the generation numbers and asked if that was something they could get from Scott Mueller. Chris stated he is looking forward to the plant to start recouping some generation and to slow down rate increases for the Village of Swanton ratepayers.
Any Other Business: Eugene LaBombard stated he would like the Police Department to know that while walking through the Village on Saturday he saw 4 unregistered trail bikes driving around recklessly.
Any Other Business: Neal Speer stated he would like to recognize Betsy Fournier and Gordon and Debbie Winters for their efforts on keeping the Marble Mill project going. He said to stay tuned because there is movement going on. He said their next step is to hire a consultant and progress is being made. He said there will be public hearings in the near future.
Any Other Business: Reg Beliveau stated that Elisabeth Nance, Economic Development Coordinator, has created a “Spruce Up Day” to run the same day as Green Up Day (May 4, 2019). She said Hank Lambert, Coordinator, will have a table set up at the Village Complex handing out leaf bags and work gloves. She said David Turner, manager of Sticks and Stuff and Gordon Winters, owner of Ace Hardware have donated the bags and the gloves. She said this Spruce Up Day is a way of encouraging residents to take pride in their properties and spruce them up. He also informed the Board that she would like to hold their 2nd Annual Swanton Community Wide Yard Sale on Saturday, May 18th from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a rain date of Sunday, May 19th on the Village Green. Interested residents can email email@example.com to reserve their spot or for more information.
Any Other Business: Reg Beliveau informed the Board that the Village of Swanton ran a legal notice in the St. Albans Messenger for Request for Statements of Qualifications for Engineering Services for the Wastewater Treatment Facility to help with discharge goals and State requirements. He said he would keep the Board updated on this matter.
Any Other Business: Dianne Day, Village Clerk, informed the Board that John Brueckner from the Swanton Christian Church is requesting permission to hold their 5K Run for Jesus on Saturday, June 29 beginning on Academy Street and going down Route 7 for about 1.5 miles. He said he would like to have Academy Street closed for this event. The Board of Trustees approved this event.
Any Other Business: Reg Beliveau, Village Manager, wanted to inform our ratepayers that if they choose to search for the Village of Swanton’s website to pay their utility bill a payment company by the name of Doxo comes up first in the search. He demonstrated this on his laptop showing in detail what happens. He wanted ratepayers to know that if they go through the Village’s website, www.swanton.net, there is no fee to process their payment but if they use Doxo that company charges them a fee to do so. He wanted our ratepayers to know the Village of Swanton does not endorse using Doxo.
8. Executive Session to Discuss Real Estate:
Adam Paxman made a motion, seconded by Chris Leach, to go into executive session at 7:50 p.m. to discuss real estate, legal, contractual or personnel issues where premature general public knowledge of the subject matter would place the Village or person involved at a substantial disadvantage and it was further moved to enter into executive session to discuss real estate, legal, personnel or contractual issues under the provisions of Title 1, Section 313(a)(1) of the Vermont Statutes. Motion carried.
Adam Paxman made the motion to exit Executive Session at 8:30 p.m., seconded by Chris Leach. Motion carried.
ACTION TAKEN: None.
Chris Leach made the motion to adjourn the Regular Board of the Trustees meeting at 8:30 p.m. Adam Paxman seconded. There being no further business at hand, Neal Speer, Village President, adjourned the meeting at 8:30 p.m. Motion carried.
Neal Speer, Village President Date
Dianne Day, Village Clerk Date