Selectmen's Weekly Minutes

Listing of the Board of Selectmen's Weekly Meeting Minutes.  Click HERE to view list of posted Agendas

February 19, 2019

6:00PM Open Meeting

In Attendance: Carol A. Francesconi, Robert S. Ciskowski
Absent:      
Press: iBerkshires

Board conducts the business session of the meeting by reviewing and approving weekly payroll and vendor warrants.
 
6:30PM
Carol opens the regular portion of the meeting.
Carol read the minutes and made a motion to accept the Board’s February 12, 2019 meeting minutes. Robert seconds the motion. A unanimous vote was taken.

Highway Superintendent, Blair Crane:  Weekly report submitted for 2/13/19-2/19/19.
-  Multiple call outs- ice for Saturday, February 16, 2019 and Sunday, February 17, 2019.
- Salt shed at 30% capacity.
- School heating oil tank at 6200 gallons, system is ok and operational.
- Truck #2 down with water pump replacement.
- Prepping for another round of weather for Wednesday and Thursday.
- Winter sand is available to residents at town garage.
    

Town Administrator, Ed St. John IV:  Weekly report submitted for February 5, 2019.
- Contacted Spectrum to update the internet service on Thursday, February 21, 2019.
- Will call Spectrum to discuss accounts.
- Ed submitted the necessary paperwork for the LED street light grant.  He informed National Grid and the Department of Public Utilities of a request for information to buy back the street lights.    
- Contacted Macfarlane’s to schedule an appoint to look at the town’s equipment and to review     what is available if we were to decide to upgrade.
- One bid has been received for the Water Department Emergency Repairs.
- Have received four (4) applications for the Highway Department laborer position.
- Checked the domain account that hosts our .gov addresses and it appears we are all set until September of 2019.
- The School Committee cancelled for this evening and have rescheduled for March 5, 2019.
- Significant progress has been made on the budget.  Many departments have submitted their proposals and I will update as more come in.

Cheshire Board of Health, Michael Biagini Jr.:
- A Summary Notice of Regulations will be advertised in The Berkshire as soon as possible.  It states: “Notice is hereby given that the Cheshire Board of Health (located at the Cheshire Town Hall) on February 19, 2019 at 7:30PM, voted to adopt regulations pertaining to the Board of Health regulations for piggeries with an effective day of June 1, 2019.  For a copy of the regulations please come to the town hall during business hours.”

Resident, Mike Biagini-Route 8
- Requested assistance with a water problem from an adjoining neighbor which has ruined part of his driveway and has become a safety issue when family members attempt to use the driveway. Travis will viewed the issue and report back to the BOS.

Town Clerk, Christine Emerson:    No issues or concerns.

Cheshire Police Chief, Tim Garner
- Weekly report submitted.
- Introduced Cody Alvarez to the BOS as a candidate for a part time police officer position.
- Carol motioned to appoint Cody Alvarez as a part time police office for the Town of Cheshire; 2nd by Robert with a unanimous vote taken. Mr. Alvarez will be on probation until the May elections.

Mail and Correspondence:    
     
Carol:
With all business finalized, Carol motioned to adjourn the meeting at 7:00pm and to go into Executive Session; seconded by Robert.  The BOS meeting will not reconvene. A unanimous vote was taken.

Roll Call:    Carol A. Francesconi, Yes; and Robert S. Ciskowski, Yes.
        
Respectfully Submitted,

Carole A. Hilderbrand, Board of Selectmen’s Secretary

_______________________________________________________________
Carol A. Francesconi, Chairman
Robert S. Ciskowski, Clerk

 



February 12, 2019

6:00PM Open Meeting

In Attendance: Carol A. Francesconi, Robert S. Ciskowski
Absent:      
Press: None

Board conducts the business session of the meeting by reviewing and approving weekly payroll and vendor warrants.
 
6:30PM
Carol opens the regular portion of the meeting.
Carol read the minutes and made a motion to accept the Board’s February 5, 2019 meeting minutes. Robert seconds the motion. A unanimous vote was taken.

Highway Superintendent, Blair Crane:  Due to a snow storm, Mr. Crane was unavailable.

Interim Town Administrator, Ed St. John IV:  Weekly report submitted for February 12, 2019.

The Interim Town Administrator spoke to a representative from Spectrum regarding our internet speed. As of right now, we have a download speed of 4 mbps and pay approximately $75.00 per month. For approximately $119.99, we can get 100 mbps. There is an opportunity to bundle with phones, but given the set-up, he is hesitant to pursue this right now.


He worked on finalizing a grant application to get us into the pipeline at least for funds for replacing our street lights to LED’s.
At the end of December/early January, he sent the Board some information regarding a PILOT agreement for a solar project on East Harbor Road. They are looking to move forward with an agreement, but want to have further discussions regarding the numbers. He reached out to our consultant on this project and will update soon. Approval of this agreement will require a Town Meeting vote.


One company expressed interest in the Invitation to Bid for the Water Department Emergency Repair contract. Nothing has been submitted to date.
He met with members of the Finance Committee to discuss the upcoming budget process. They plan to meet again in the future.


The board discussion the Interim Town Administrator’s current agreement and Carol made the following motion:
To create a new agreement from 2/12/19 until 6/30/19 and then a subsequent agreement from 7/1/19 to 6/30/22. No further substantive changes were made to the agreement.
Robert seconded the motion and a unanimous vote was taken


The Board also discussed amending the Highway Department Superintendent’s agreement as follows: to create a new agreement from 7/1/19 to 6/30/22. The other amendment was to change that the Highway Department Superintendent may receive three weeks of vacation after two years of continuous employment. The previous agreement stated that the three weeks would be earned after three years of continuous employment.


Carol made the motion to amend the Highway Department Superintendent’s contract as outlined above, with a second by Robert. A unanimous vote was taken.

Cheshire Police Chief, Tim Garner
- Weekly report submitted.

Mail and Correspondence:
- Read letter from Baystate Elevator informing increase in monthly inspection rate
- MMA – announced return of essay contest among 8th graders; asked for permission for MMA to contact schools to ask if schools want to participate

Carol: Motioned to approve question to be placed on the Annual Election ballot by which the Town accepts the legislation expanding the Board of Selectmen from 3 members to 5 members approved by the Legislature and signed into effect by the Governor; 2nd by Robert, a unanimous vote

Carol:
With all business finalized, Carol motioned to adjourn the meeting at 7:30pm; seconded by Robert.  A unanimous vote was taken.
        
Respectfully Submitted,

Edmund R. St. John, IV, Town Administrator

_______________________________________________________________
Carol A. Francesconi, Chairman
Robert S. Ciskowski, Clerk

December 5, 2019

6:00PM Open Meeting

In Attendance: Robert S. Ciskowski, Carol A. Francesconi
Absent:        
Press:
                   
Board conducts the business session of the meeting by reviewing and approving weekly payroll and vendor warrants.

6:30PM Carol opens the regular portion of the meeting.
       Carol read the minutes and made a motion to accept the Board’s January 15, 2019 meeting minutes. Robert seconds the motion. A unanimous vote was taken.

Highway Superintendent, Blair Crane:  Weekly report submitted for 1/30/19-2/5/19.
- Salt shed is at 100% capacity.
- School heating oil tank is at 8000 gallons with a refill last week of 6000.
- Truck #2 back in service after transmission repair.  Repair was under full warrantee.
- Met with National Grid regarding Jenks Road.  They will be attempting to run the lines up the East side of the road and not the pasture side.
- Winter sand is available to residents at town garage.

Interim Town Administrator, Ed St. John IV:  Weekly report submitted for February 5, 2019.
- Ed attended the Massachusetts Certified Public Purchasing Official training for three (3) days. Ed passed the examination.
- Called Spectrum to discuss internet speeds. An appointment is scheduled for Thursday, February 7, 2019 from 1pm to 2pm.
- Spoke to Jim Bush, a Selectman from Adams regarding complaints regarding trailer trucks traveling on West Mount Road to Notch Road-leading over from Fred Mason Road.  Ed will     research possibilities on installing Load Limit Signs at the beginning of Fred Mason Road.
- Followed up on the topic of the Whitney’s Property.  A simple ratification vote tonight will suffice.
- Received bridge inspection report conducted by Mass DOT for East Main Street, Church Street,     West Mountain Road. One deficiency deals with potholes on Church Street.  West Mountain Roads deficiency was reported on the headwall of the culvert/retaining wall section. This will be remedied as soon as possible.
- Bid notice was sent to the Berkshire Eagle for the Water Department Emergency Repair     contract.  Return date is 7pm on 2/2/19.  Bid will be reviewed in Executive Session on 2/26/19.
- Ed attended the February meeting of the Berkshire Managers.  Discussion included the renewed     emphasis on infrastructure repair and dollars for such, not just low-interest loans.
- Ed walked the portion of the Rail Trail in the Harbor area with Selectman Ciskowski looking at that portion of the Hoosic River and associated dam.  Ed followed up by researching into the

Interim Town Administrator, Ed St. John IV:

Division of Ecological Restoration’s Dam Removal projects.  The DER, at this time, is not     accepting priority project.  Other options will be researched.
- No budgets have been returned.

Carol:
- Regarding first refusal on Whitney 61A property. Carol motioned that the town has no     intention of taking of Whitney 61A property; 2nd by Robert.  A unanimous vote was taken.

Cheshire Police Chief, Tim Garner
- Weekly report submitted.
- The Cheshire Police employment opportunity application process will close on 2/26/19 or until the position is filled. (Ed will check into if open meetings (the public) is invited to the interviews.
An Executive Session will take place on March 5, 2019.  (Screening)

Town Clerk, Christine Emerson:  
- No issues or concerns.

Mail and Correspondence:    
     
Carol:
With all business finalized, Carol motioned to adjourn the meeting at 7:30pm; seconded by Robert.  
A unanimous vote was taken.


Respectfully Submitted,

Carole A. Hilderbrand, Board of Selectmen’s Secretary

_______________________________________________________________
Carol A. Francesconi, Chairman
Robert S. Ciskowski, Clerk

 

January 29, 2019

6:00PM Open Meeting

In Attendance: Carol A. Francesconi, Robert S. Ciskowski
Absent:      
Press:

Board conducts the business session of the meeting by reviewing and approving weekly payroll and vendor warrants.
 
6:30PM
Carol opens the regular portion of the meeting.
Carol read the minutes and made a motion to accept the Board’s January 22, 2019 meeting minutes. Robert seconds the motion. A unanimous vote was taken.

Highway Superintendent, Blair Crane:  Weekly report submitted for 11/23/19-1/29/19.

Interim Town Administrator, Ed St. John IV:  Weekly report submitted for January 29, 2019
- Updated the BOS on the first draft of changes to the Cheshire website.
- Completed and successfully passed the Massachusetts Certified Public Purchasing Official training and examination.
- Working with the Adams Cheshire Regional School District on budget and Levy numbers.  Ed will be meeting with department head for budget input.  
- Met with Caroline Massa, BRPC, regarding the Green Community project.  The Cheshire Planning Board met with BRPC to discuss changes to the Zoning By-Laws that would have to take place.    
- Met with Dr. Vosburgh and scheduled to meet with the School District to discuss their budget on February 19, 2019.  The School District will then meet with the Finance Committee from Adams     and Cheshire on February 26, 2019 and ultimately look to approve their FY 2020 budget on     March 11 at the Middle/High School.
- Question regarding Chapter 61A Classification.  Seeking a vote waiving the right of first refusal prior to the February 28, 2019 expiration of the statutory period.
- Request from the Department of Public Utilities looking to use the Community Center on March 28, 2019 at 7pm.  The petition is for a rate change with the Hutchinson Water company.

Dr. Vosburgh, Paul Butler, and Adam Emerson:
- Paul Butler reviewed The Towns of Adams and Cheshire Massachusetts Regional School District Agreement- Section by Section. The document can be viewed on the Adams Cheshire School District website.


Robert:
- Attended the community outreach meeting regarding the establishment of a marijuana growing facility on Stafford Hill at the Community Center on January 23, 2019.  There was a question and answer period and in general the meeting was calm.
- Requested Ed to check into interns for the summer.  Previously, it was thought that interns     could be utilized for traffic studies.
- Will be on vacation from Robert’s day job and he will be checking out Harbor Dam with Ed on Tuesday, February 5, 2019 at 1pm.
- Robert would like guidance from National Grid and BRPC regarding LED street lights.  He also suggested the need for an inventory to be done by a specialist at night.

Cheshire Water Department, Travis Delratez:
- Travis requested Ed to put out a Bid for Emergency Water Repairs.
- Travis suggested meeting on second Tuesdays for better communication between departments.

Cheshire Police Chief, Tim Garner
- Weekly report submitted.

Town Clerk, Christine Emerson:  
- No issues or concerns.

Mail and Correspondence:    
     
Carol:

With all business finalized, Carol motioned to adjourn the meeting at 7:40pm; seconded by Robert. A unanimous vote was taken.
         
Respectfully Submitted,

Carole A. Hilderbrand, Board of Selectmen’s Secretary

_______________________________________________________________
Carol A. Francesconi, Chairman
Robert S. Ciskowski, Clerk

January 22, 2019

6:00PM Open Meeting

In Attendance: Carol A. Francesconi, Robert S. Ciskowski, Blair Crane
Absent:      
Press: iBerkshires, Berkshire Eagle

Warrants were signed.

Mrs. Francesconi opened the meeting at 6:30 pm.

The Community Host Agreement was discussed with Mr. Maguire.  Carol questioned page 3, 3. Term.  After a discussion as to whether Mr. Maguire intended to stop the contract after five years. His answer was no that thought according the MGL that it was understood that the contract would or could be renegotiated.  It was agreed to add the sentence, "The contract may be renegotiated after five years.".  The sentence was added to the contract and the Selectmen and Mr. Maguire signed the document.

Highway Superintendent, Blair Crane's report:
- Salt Shed at 75% capacity.
- School heating oil tank at 2800 gallons.  Water main insulation measures seem to be doing well.  Water main temp this morning was 45 degrees.
- Truck 2- Ford F550 transmission came in today.  Hope to have the truck back in service later this week.
- Meeting with John Deere scheduled for last week was postponed by them and rescheduled for late this week or next (weather permitting).
- Winter Sand available to residents at Town Garage.
Carol asked Blair if the work on the Compactor Site had begun.  Answer, the work has been postponed due to the weather.

Treasurer, Rebecca Herzog and the Board of Selectmen signed a Renewal Anticipation Serial Note.  The note issued February 1, 2019, $534,250 at 2.60% per annum from Easthampton Savings Bank.  This note is for fire truck and highway trucks voted a 2014 and 2016 Annual Town  Meetings.

Correspondence:

- Letter from Stafford Green Inc. giving the notice for their Community Outreach Meeting, Wednesday, January 23, 6:300 at the Cheshire Community/Senior Center.  Also, enclosed was a copy of the add from the Berkshire Eagle.
- Letter from ATC Environmental stating that a Immediate Response Plan (IRA) has been submitted to Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection for Global Partners LLP, 173 North Street, Cheshire (Shell Gasoline Station).  
- Letter and Invoice from Berkshire Regional Planning Commission.  Stating that the annual town assessment for FY 2019  will increase 2.5%.  The figure is $2,577.55.

- Wire Inspector Fees:
Carol and Bob discussed the fee for solar/photovoltaic for the electrical inspector.  Conclusion that "all solar photovoltaic (PV) systems shall have a flat fee of $50 per KW".
Motion by Carol to change this fee.  Unanimous vote by Selectmen.

- Town Clerk presented the offices that shall appear on the May 6th Annual Election ballot.  One Moderator for three year term; One Selectmen for three year term; One Selectmen for one year term; One Assessor for three year term; One Board of Health Member for three year term; One Cemetery Commissioner for three year term; One Cemetery Commissioner for one year term; One Planning Board Member for five year term; One Adams Cheshire Regional School District School Committee Member from Cheshire for three year term; One Northern Berkshire Vocation School District School Committee Member from Cheshire for three year term; and three Constables for three year terms each.
Nomination papers are available beginning January 29th, papers are due back to Town Clerk/Registrars by 5:00 pm Monday, March 18th.

- Cheshire Library requested the use of the closet on Depot Street side of the Town Hall for storage.  Permission was granted.

- Police Chief Garner submitted the weekly police logs.

- Board of Selectmen voted unanimously to support Cheshire Lake District seeking Commonwealth aid for the cost of the deweeding of the lake.
Meeting adjourned at 7:15 pm.

         
Respectfully Submitted,

Christine Emerson

_______________________________________________________________
Carol A. Francesconi, Chairman
Robert S. Ciskowski, Clerk

 

Respectfully Submitted,

Carole A. Hilderbrand, Board of Selectmen’s Secretary

_______________________________________________________________
Carol A. Francesconi, Chairman
Robert S. Ciskowski, Clerk

January 15, 2019

6:00PM Open Meeting

In Attendance: Carol A. Francesconi, Robert S. Ciskowski
Absent:      
Press: iBerkshires

Board conducts the business session of the meeting by reviewing and approving weekly payroll and vendor warrants.
 
6:30PM
Carol opens the regular portion of the meeting.
Carol read the minutes and made a motion to accept the Board’s January 8, 2019 meeting minutes. Robert seconds the motion. A unanimous vote was taken.

Highway Superintendent, Blair Crane:  Weekly report submitted for 1/9/19-1/15/19.
- 75% capacity of salt in the shed.
- School oil tank is at 3200.
- Sand Mill Bridge was closed, not for safety reasons, but for State testing.
- Blair voiced concerns about possible ice flows.
- Transmission in truck @ (Ford 550) failed during last week's storm. The manufacturer is totally replacing it at no cost. Researching a road grader.  Met with Caterpillar and meeting with John Deer this week. Blair will be looking at new and used machines for comparisons.
- Winter sand available to residents at the town garage.    

Stafford Green Inc.
- A Host Agreement was submitted to the BOS on 1/8/19.  The BOS asked questions regarding security, and police protection.  Once the changes have been made the document will be forwarded to Town Counsel.

Interim Town Administrator, Ed St. John IV:  Weekly report submitted for January 15, 2019
- Met with the Finance Committee to continue to work on the budget.  The Colonial Power Group     reports a total savings of $53,314, 92% of which was seen by the residents. Ed received the Cheshire's Quarterly Aggregation Report for Q3 2018.
- Continuing to work on the Town Website.
- Received notification from Governor Baker that he has approved and signed into law the proposed legislation expanding the Board of Selectmen from three (3) members to five (5.)  Town Counsel is in the process of reviewing this. We can now, as a town, vote at either an annual or special election, to accept this legislation. This will be on the 1/29/19 Agenda.
- Continuing to work on Compete Streets program and seeking funding for the police department.
- Working with a representative from MAPC gathering information regarding LED street lights.
- Met with members of the COA regarding a program offered to community members. It is offered to residents and members of the COA. It therefore makes sense to continue to offer the facility as long as it is used for this purpose. Should the audience change, it will then be readdressed.
- Ed will check into the softball usage at the school and report back to the BOS.

Cheshire Police Chief, Tim Garner
- Weekly report submitted.

Town Clerk, Christine Emerson:  
- No issues or concerns.

Mail and Correspondence:    
- Letter of Resignation from Francis A. Waterman, Jr. as a Water Commissioner.

Carol:
- Motioned to appoint Ron DeAngelis to the Cheshire Water Department.  He will finish the term of Francis A. Waterman and then run for the position in May; 2nd by Robert.  A unanimous vote was taken.
    
Talks continued regarding the inspection fees of the Electrical Inspector.  The BOS will discuss this topic at the next Tuesday to resolve any questions.

Carol:
With all business finalized, Carol motioned to adjourn the meeting at 8:00pm; seconded by Robert.  
A unanimous vote was taken.

         
Respectfully Submitted,

Carole A. Hilderbrand, Board of Selectmen’s Secretary

_______________________________________________________________
Carol A. Francesconi, Chairman
Robert S. Ciskowski, Clerk