PRESENT: Chairman Hathaway, Councilor Cheney, Councilor Michaels, Councilor Friedman and Councilor Kelly, Police Chief B. O’Halloran, Town Manager B. Reed, CEO A. Thomas, and Deputy Clerk J. Reed—J. Parker of CES, Representative from Penquis CAP, T. Lewis, and S. Moores
ITEM 1. The June 4, 2001 Veazie Town Council was called to order at 7:00 PM.
ITEM 2. Consideration of minutes: Motion: Councilor Michaels --to accept May 21, 2001 minutes as written. Seconded: Councilor Cheney, Vote 5-0 in favor.
ITEM 3. Consideration of the Agenda: There were not any additions made to the agenda.
ITEM 4a. Public Comments: There were no comments from the public.
ITEM 5a. Senior Housing update Penquis CAP: T. Lewis stated that Maine State Housing had given “notice to proceed.” The notice confirms that the housing tax credits have been set aside for the project. A green light has been given to J. Parker to begin meeting with planning board about zoning issues. J. Ponsettee will be the construction overseer and J. Parker of CES will be the engineer for the project and Dave Merritt is working on the architectural design. A sketch of the project was available for inspection, which outlined where the old school is in relation to the new design. The sketch shows an area reserved for parking, if need be, but a decision will not be made until the planning board decides how many spaces will be required.
The boundaries will not be determined until the planning board states what is need but there maybe enough space for an additional 16 units.
Things can move quickly once the amount of land to be conveyed is established. There is a need to hear what the planning board has to say before the site plan can be finalized.
Councilor Cheney asked if the land abutters have been notified? CEO Thomas said that would all be part of the Planning Board process.
Motion: Councilor Michaels—to authorize the Town Manager to formalize an agreement under Item 2 of the work plan memo sent to the Town Council dated 2-9-2001 with the additional mutual benefit public improvements, such as, new parking lots, recreation areas and roadway redevelopment pending Town legal review and final council approval. Seconded: Councilor Friedman, Vote 5-0 in favor.
ITEM 5b. Adoption of Capital Plan: Manager Reed stated that a motion was needed to adopt the 10-year capital plan. The Capital plan is a rolling document and a five-year capital plan must be adopted on a yearly basis. Motion: Councilor Michaels—to accept the capital plan as written, Seconded: Councilor Cheney, Vote 5-0 in favor.
ITEM 5c. Revised Fee Schedule: Manager Reed stated that Veazie’s fees are not in line with communities with similar services. Councilor Cheney asked where campsite fees would be applicable in Veazie? CEO Thomas stated that Greystone used to have campsites. Councilor Michaels asked about impact fees and Manager Reed stated that impact fees are associated with administrative costs and that Duke paid those fees through an agreement voluntarily.
Motion: Councilor Friedman--to accept the fee schedule (Attachment A) as written Seconded: Councilor Kelly, Vote 5-0 in favor
ITEM 5d. Review of Goals and Objectives: Chairman Hathaway stated that this is the last meeting before the election and wanted to recap what the Town Council has accomplished in the last year. He also stated that he felt that the council has accomplished more in the past year than any other council in the past. It was also noted that that it was the best year working with the school department. The senior housing project going through has been a major accomplishment. Chairman Hathaway went through the 2000-2001-goal list. He pointed out all the accomplishments that have been successful throughout the past year.
There were comments made in reference to the cable channel updates. Manager Reed stated that the system was updated last week and training was conducted for himself, A. Thomas and J. Reed. There was discussion that the new technology enabled the town to post more efficiently with a variety of items with interchangeable start and stop dates for each individual slide. Councilor Cheney mentioned she liked the added music.
Councilor Cheney stated that there would be a float representing Veazie in the July 4th parade. There will be a flatbed truck available to decorate. She suggested maybe they ask the president of the Senior’s Club to ride in the truck with G. Hammond who has agreed to drive the truck. Councilor Cheney said she has also received commitments from area businesses to help in the effort.
Councilor Friedman stated he was very pleased with the past year’s accomplishments especially the Senior Housing Project. Chairman Hathaway stated that the people in Augusta were impressed with the amount of interest Veazie had in the Senior Housing Project.
Councilor Michaels mentioned that pay scales were also addressed this past year. Manager Reed stated that the rest of the department’s pay scales will be researched in the next year.
Councilor Cheney mentioned that it has been a pleasure working with the current board.
ITEM 6. Tax Payers Club Discussion: Manager Reed stated that there has been inquires from people on fixed incomes asking if the Town could come up with a plan for a tax payment plan. MMA recommends that the Town could propose a plan and send it to MMA for legal review. The program would entail 8 payments starting in May of 2002.
Councilor Michaels stated that while in the Town Office last week, an elderly couple came into the Town Office to pay their taxes in advance. He thought it was too bad that we could not accept the payment because he overheard them talking about spending it before the tax came due. A. Thomas told the Council that currently it is against the law to accept tax payments in advance.
Councilor Friedman said he had been in touch with Augusta and we would have to allow every taxpayer the same advantage and that could put the Town in a situation where it would need to borrow money and that would be a burden to the Town.
Veazie has a great tax collection rate and Chairman Hathaway stated that there is not an issue at this time and should not change the current system because it could create an accounting nightmare.
The consensus of the Council is not in favor of looking into this type of a plan.
Councilor Friedman stated that he is tired of seeing the same names in the Town Report every year for nonpayment of taxes. He asked that the Town be more aggressive about tax collection.
ITEM 7a. Manager’s Report: Manager went through the list of items on his Manager’s notes as follows:
7a. The council discussed a memo from Police Chief O’Halloran outlining the issue of the budget line discussed in the public hearing. Councilor Michaels thanked Chief O’Halloran for the detail and effort he put into the memo to clear up any confusion.
7b. Manager Reed presented documentation on a cash settlement on the second of our investment funds of $ 32,925.12. Total collected investment funds $155,880.00. End net proceeds $64,623.94.
7c. Manager Reed stated he had been approached by an individual who was very concerned that we sent out late dog registration notices by way of certified mail and thought it was a waste of money. The State law requires the formal process for the preparing of the Dog Warrant.
7d. The monthly Fire Department report was presented.
7E. Manager Reed outline there has been a resolution on school floor issue. Chairman Hathaway stated that there were additional issues and asked for the status on outstanding issues with the school project. The council wants an all-inclusive list of what all issues are and how the issues are being resolved.
7f. The Council discussed the recycling report from the State of Maine.
One issue is that there is no real incentive for households to recycle other than feeling like it’s a good thing to do. Manager Reed stated that the Town has purchased new recycle bins and are available to citizens. Chairman Hathaway stated that he met with a large recycler and he said, there is just not a market for household recycling. Chairman Hathaway asked that the council review the costs and other aspects of the recycling program.
Manager Reed stated that the capitated agreement would not change the avoided tip fee or the cost per stop.
Chairman Hathaway stated that maybe it’s time to go into the schools and advocate for recycling because for a long time the numbers were going up and now the numbers are going down. It was pointed out that many of the businesses used to contribute more to the recycling effort.
Councilor Michaels mentioned it would be too bad to go to the stringent rules in some communities, like see through garbage bags where newspaper can be seen and scrutinized whether it belongs in the trash of the recycling.
7g. The Manager noted that Duke Energy had sent out letters to the community pertaining to the Open House day on June 16th from 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM.
ITEM 8. Requests for Information/Council Comments: Councilor Cheney mentioned that there is a truck parked on the Davis property and the Town stated they were going to enforce the Land Use Ordinance. CEO Thomas stated that at this point he is unable to determine the owner of the vehicle. He stated that he is in the process of sending a letter to Mr. Davis. Chairman Hathaway asked why the property couldn’t be posted and Manager Reed stated that it is personal property and it is a code enforcement issue.
CEO Thomas also stated that he has been researching what can be done about the rooster that is disrupting a neighborhood.
Councilor Cheney asked if the Town would put something on the Cable Channel about the July 4th float and Manager Reed stated yes. Councilor Cheney stated that the businesses are cooperating and willing to donate to the cause.
Councilor Friedman wanted to thank Deputy Clerk Reed for picking up the Town Report and making all the copies of the inserts this past Friday. The reports were delivered to homes on June 3, 2001, a full week earlier than past years. The manager outlined that he did not receive a single complaint about the delivery of the books this year.
ITEM 9. Warrants: Town Warrant 23, Town Payroll Warrant 23, School Warrant 23, School Payroll Warrant 23, and School Lunch Warrant 23, were circulated and signed.
ITEM 10. Adjournment: Motion: Councilor Friedman--to adjourn June 4, 2001, Town Council Meeting. Seconded: Councilor Kelly there was no further discussion. Voted 5-0 Meeting adjourned 8:45 PM.
Julie D. S. Reed
Deputy Town Clerk