October 31, 2017
In Attendance: Robert S. Ciskowski, Carol A. Francesconi and Ed St. John IV
Carol motioned to accept the minutes as presented for October 24, 2017. Robert requested the insertion of Part-time Police Officer openings. Carol restated her motion to as corrected; 2nd by Robert with a unanimous vote taken.
Cheshire Highway Superintendent, Blair Crane:
- Lighting installation completed.
- Working on potholes, cleaning ditches, and grading of dirt roads when the weather permits.
- Roadside mowing continues.
- Snow equipment maintained and prepared for winter storms.
- The storage container arrives on 11/3/17.
- F550 should be back by the end of this week.
- Updated the BOS on the status of a wash out on Monday, October 30, 2017 on a section of Windsor Road embankment below Notch Road. It appears to have been caused by debris clogging a catch basin. A great deal of material was washed away for approximately 3 feet and over 100 feet long. Blair is watching the area closely and hopes the rain lets up so the water does not continue to bleed from the hill. One lane of the road is open and Blair's plan, weather permitting, is to repair the road in the next Monday as he realizes the inconvenience of taking a detour for those living in the area. This repair is a top priority and will be addressed with efficiency and a planned out system. Work should begin on Monday, November 6th. Blair also noted that the repairs can come from Chapter 90 and he has received the beginning approvals from the State to utilize Chapter 90. Mark is working on securing possible funding from the State and will be getting in touch with our State Senator to assist with Mass Highway for financial assistance. Robert thanked Blair for his excellent responce and for taking the responsibility of the project with exemplary workmanship. It was noted that Cheshire was the only town in the county to suffer damage of this magnitude.
Town Administrator, Mark Webber:
- Met with Cheshire Highway negotiating team this morning. MEMO submitted to the BOS.
- Working with Blair on the Windsor Road repairs and funding sources.
- Corrected law section of Town Employee health/dental insurance policy. (Section 23 Section 2).
Mark will be drafting a letter to those affected by health and dental insurance. Carol motioned to adopt a new health/dental policy for eligible employees/elected officials and those appointed. The individual must work for twenty hours per week or 1040 hours annually and be documented; 2nd by Robert with a unanimous vote taken.
- Drafted Highway Department employee job description. Robert was highly impressed with the document and offered the suggestion to include Hoisting 1C license as a requirement. After reviewing for a week, the BOS will discuss this item on November 7, 2017.
Town Administrator, Mark Webber: continued
- Attending FEMA/MEMA training session on Monday, November 6, 2017 in Lanesborough with Blair.
- Contacted the ABCC regarding our annual license renewals.
- Working on National Grid/Verizon pole licensing agreement. They are requiring that all municipalities sign license agreements for items attached to their poles. There are 84 poles in the central town area having items on them. Checked out some of the poles and there are old fire alarms or other equipment on some of the poles as Chief Francesconi explained. No agreements will be signed until more information is received.
- The BOS reviewed estimates Ed received for the Town Hall's roof repairs and also for the roof of the fire house. Further discussion is needed.
- Will be contacting Big Daddy regarding the procedure for obtaining a liquor license.
- Made a motion to have an Executive Session at 7:30PM at the Town Hall on 11/7/17 to:
"Discuss the reputation, character, physical condition or mental health, rather than professional competence, of an individual, or discuss the discipline or dismissal of, or complaints or charges against, a public officer, employee, staff member or individual" 2nd by Robert with a unanimous vote taken.
Resident, Barry Emery:
- Discussed the upcoming events offered from the Ad Hoc Citizens Anniversary Committee.
- He voiced that the group would be going for a Northern Berkshire Grant, they are seeking sponsors, they desire to have student volunteers from McCann Vocational Technical High School to design a web page, and questioned the possibilities of facilities for the events and permits required.
Anniversary schedules are the following:
March 10, 2018 Cheshire Birthday Celebration; April Earth Day; May Memorial Day Parade; June 24 Eagles Concert; July 14 Cheese Festival; July 11 Block Party; Historical Slide show; August 8 Block Party; August Cruz night; September Historical walking tour and Cobbles hike. They would also like to create postcards, have a student essay contest, and a side walk chalk drawing event.
- The groups next meeting will take place on Tuesday, November 14, 2017 at the fire station at 7pm. All are welcome. Please contact Barry with ideas or offers of help. Barry said, "It is a nice energetic group of people volunteering for town." Fred Balawender said, "It would be great to get everyone involved."
- Carol asked Mark to research RFP's.
Resident, Gary Trudeau:
- Questioned the tax rate. Carol noted that all tax payers are paying the same rate of $13.06. The budget is up 2.5%. Confusion between budgets and tax rates ended the conversation.
Owners, Cheshire Liquor Center:
- Questioned if the town could have their property surveyed regarding a DEP concern from the State DEP. The BOS suggested speaking with the assessors to secure maps which might help them. No surveying services are available through the town.
WPA Emergency Certificate Form completed for stabilization of bank to support road, construction equipment will be operated from Windsor Road minimizing the exposure of the brook to contamination.
Town Clerk, Christine Emerson: No issues or concerns.
Police Chief, Timothy Garner: Submitted weekly report.
Mail and Correspondence:
- MASS DOT National Bridge Inspection Standards and Bridge Inspection Reports. Wells Road/South Brook; East Main Street/South Brook; Notch Road/South Brook; Windsor Road/Dry Brook.
- Forest Cutting Plan; Joseph Wren, 224 Fisher Hill Road.
With all business finalized, Carol motioned to adjourn; 2nd by Robert with a unanimous vote taken.
Carole A. Hilderbrand, Board of Selectmen’s Secretary
Robert S. Ciskowski, Chairman
Carol A. Francesconi, Clerk
Ed St. John IV, Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds