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Council Minutes May 24, 2010

PRESENT:        Chairman Perkins, Councilor Hathaway, Councilor Friedman, Councilor King, Councilor Parker, Manager W. Reed, Deputy Clerk K. Humphrey, Office Administrator J. Reed, Parks & Recreation Director R. Young, Police Chief M. Leonard, Public Works Director B. Free, Assessor/CEO A. Thomas, Fire Capt. P. Metcalf, CES, Inc. Engineer Travis Noyes, Members of the Public.
                
ITEM 1. The May 24, 2010 Veazie Town Council meeting was called to order at 7:00PM.

ITEM 2. Consideration of the Minutes
Motion By:  Councilor Friedman—to accept the May 10, 2010 meeting minutes as written.  Seconded:  Councilor King, Voted 5-0 in favor.
                                
ITEM 3. Consideration of the Agenda
Manager Reed stated that the Superintendent had dropped off a funding reimbursement agreement that they can take up under item 4b.  

Chairman Perkins stated he would like to add item 5c to discuss the Manager’s contract.  

ITEM 4a.        Highway Projects Selection
Motion By:  Councilor Friedman—to table item 4a, Highway Projects Selection, until the next meeting.  Seconded:  Councilor King, Voted 5-0 in favor.  

ITEM 4b.        RSU Ballot Warrant
Council members signed the RSU Warrant and Notice of Election to be posted for the June 8th election.  

Manager Reed explained the reimbursement agreement to the Council.  It details the transfer of the former school department’s funds to the new RSU.  Manager Reed outlined that the other towns had wished to divide the funds up over a 2 year period, however, Veazie wished to do three years.  
                
Motion By:  Councilor Hathaway—to table the RSU Reimbursement Agreement awaiting a revised formal document.  Seconded:  Councilor Friedman, Voted 5-0 in favor.  

ITEM 4c.        Eagle Scout Recognition
Motion By:  Councilor Hathaway—to present a certificate of recognition to Veazie resident Michael Keim for achieving Eagle Scout.  Seconded:  Councilor King, Voted 5-0 in favor.               

ITEM 4d.        Executive Session for Personnel Issue – 1 M.R.S.A. § 405(6)(A)
Motion By:  Chairman Perkins—to go into executive session pursuant to 1 M.R.S.A. § 405(6)(A) to discuss personnel matters pertaining to the Police Chief.  Seconded:  Councilor King, Voted 5-0 in favor.  
                
Motion By:  Councilor King—to end the executive session and reconvene regular session.  Seconded:  Councilor Friedman, Voted 5-0 in favor.  

ITEM 5a.        Audit RFP Review
Councilor Friedman stated he would like to table this issue until the next meeting.  Manager Reed outlined that most of the firms need to know by June 7th to book their business or they could withdraw their proposals/bids.  

Councilor Hathaway stated that he would rather see the Council move forward with a process rather than just table it.  Apart from a $200 savings he would rather stay with the firm that guided the Town through the most financially concerning time (RSU process).  He added that they also have quite an impressive list of references.  

Councilor Friedman stated that he was not in favor of using the same accounting firm.  Chairman Perkins agreed and stated that he thought change was healthy.  

Councilor Hathaway outlined that he was not sure what the Council hopes to accomplish just by changing auditing firms.  They all comply with the same level of standards, they all belong to the same associations and they are all required to provide the same letter of integrity.  He stated that our current auditor, RHR Smith, has 150 municipal and school references, the Town has been passed outstanding audit reports over the past years and now they are talking about a $200 savings.  Councilor Hathaway stated that he would not vote for a $200 savings.  He feels quite confident that the Town will be charged a differential as time goes on as a new company comes in and tries to understand what the Town has done and that they will ‘tag’ the Town with added fees and expenses.  He sees no benefit what so ever and he is not prepared to make a move for $200.  

Motion By:  Councilor Friedman—to table item 5a, Audit RFP Review, until the next meeting.  Seconded:  Councilor King, Voted 3-0.  For the record Councilor Hathaway asked if it was assumed that two vote against or was the Chairman going to call for a vote again.  Chairman Perkins stated that it was assumed.  Chairman Perkins called for all those opposed.  Voted 3-2 in favor.  
                
ITEM 5b.        Parks & Recreation Rate Review Discussion
Parks and Recreation Director Rob Young stated he would like to do a rate analysis to compare parks and recreation departments in the area.  He added that when comparing, it should be departments that are similar to Veazie’s so that he is comparing “apples to apples”.  

Chairman Perkins stated that Mr. Young should take the initiative to that and that he does not need permission.  

Councilor Hathaway inquired whether there was an accounts receivable issue.  Director Young stated that the issue has been resolved.  Councilor Hathaway asked how people pay for the program.  Director Young stated that they pay him when they pick their children up, usually at the end of the week.  

ITEM 5c.        Manager’s Contract
Motion By:  Councilor Hathaway—to go into executive session pursuant to 1 M.R.S.A. § 405(6)(A) to discuss the Town Manager’s contract.  Seconded:  Councilor King, Voted 5-0 in favor.  

Motion By:  Councilor King—to end the executive session and reconvene regular session.  Seconded:  Councilor Friedman, Voted 5-0 in favor.  

ITEM 6. Comments from the Public
Member of the Public Travis Noyes outlined that changing direction for the sake of changing direction sometimes you don’t take into account a relationship that has been built and sometimes by choosing based on money alone you could end up shooting yourself in the foot.  He stated that the Town may choose someone based on a lower prices but in the long run, like Councilor Hathaway said, you may get ‘extras’ thrown into the cost.  As a citizen who has attended many Council meetings, he has heard “lets save money,” but at what cost is the Town really going to be saving money.  Mr. Noyes stated that he hopes the Council will consider these things when they go into deliberation.      
        
ITEM 7. Manager’s Report
                The Town Council reviewed:
a.      a letter from MDEP outlining the Town’s MS4 compliance and status.
b.      A letter to the US EPA New England regarding the Town’s commitment to participating in the State Planning Offices Suitability of Development proposal.
c.      A card of thanks from Sheriff Glenn Ross to the Police Chief about Officer Dain Bryant.  Officer Bryant assisted the Sheriff’s Department when he was off duty during an incident.              

ITEM 8. Requests for Information and Town Council Comments
Councilor King inquired there had been any findings on the Main Street parking issue.  Manager Reed stated that Chief Leonard spoke with the landowner about the tenants parking off the road.  The owner is going to create more parking to help resolve the issue.   
Councilor Hathaway expressed his disappointment in the attendance at the RSU Budget Hearing.  He outlined that only six Veazie residents attended to pass a $20,000,000 budget.  He outlined that it is a new process and Veazie’s portion is significant and the six people that were there were connected in some way, in other words there was no general public.  

ITEM 9. Warrants: Town Warrant 24, 24A and Town Payroll 24 were circulated for signature.  
        
ITEM 10.        Adjournment: Motion: Councilor King —to adjourn the May 24, 2010 Town Council Meeting. Seconded: Chairman Perkins —there was no further discussion. Voted 5-0. Meeting adjourned  9:21  pm.


A true record, Attest:

Karen Humphrey
Deputy Clerk
Town of Veazie


 

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