PRESENT: Chairman Hathaway, Councilor Friedman, Councilor Parker, Councilor Perkins, Councilor King, Manager W. Reed, Deputy Clerk K. Humphrey, Office Administrator J. Reed, Fire Chief G. Martin, Public Works Superintendent B. Stoyell, Police Chief M. Leonard, Parks & Recreation Director R. Young, Budget Committee Members John Manter, Travis Noyes, Marilynn Bishop and Bill Hogan, Members of the Public.
ITEM 1. The May 9, 2011 Veazie Town Council meeting was called to order at 7:00PM.
ITEM 2. Consideration of the Minutes
Motion By: Councilor King —to accept the April 25, 2011 meeting minutes as written. Seconded: Councilor Parker, Voted 5-0 in favor.
ITEM 3. Consideration of the Agenda
There were no additions made to the agenda.
ITEM 4. Comments from the Public
There were no comments from the public.
ITEM 5a. Public Hearing – Marijuana Cultivation & Dispensaries Ordinance
Motion By: Councilor Friedman—to open the public hearing to receive comments and written submissions on the proposed amendment to the Veazie Land Use Ordinance concerning Medical Marijuana Dispensaries and Cultivation Facilities. Seconded: Councilor King. Voted 5-0 in favor.
Chairman Hathaway inquired on the allowed locations. Manager Reed stated it is the industrial zones.
Motion By: Councilor Friedman—to close the public hearing and reconvene regular session. Seconded: Councilor Perkins, Voted 5-0 in favor.
Motion By: Councilor Perkins—the Town of Veazie hereby ordains that the amendments to the Veazie Land Use Ordinance concerning Medical Marijuana Dispensaries and Cultivation Facilities be enacted as submitted by the Veazie Planning Board, staff and legal advisors. Seconded: Councilor King, Voted 5-0 in favor.
ITEM 5b. Public Hearing – FY 2011-2012 Municipal Budget
Motion by: Councilor King—to open the public hearing to receive comments and written submissions on the proposed FY 2011-2012 municipal budget as recommended by the Town Budget Committee. Seconded: Councilor Friedman, Voted 5-0 in favor.
Chairman Hathaway and Councilor Friedman thanked the Budget Committee for all their hard work as well as the department heads.
Budget Committee Chair Bill Hogan read the committee’s recommendation aloud. He also added that improvements to infrastructure was imperative. Chairman Hathaway inquired on how much control the Town had over the budget. Manager Reed stated that the Town has control of 4.4 mills of the total 18.80 mills.
Member of the public Todd Lynch inquired why the Town was increasing the budget on roads by 40%. Chairman Hathaway stated it was so the Town could undertake more projects. Mr. Lynch stated that he has not heard anyone complain about the roads. Chairman Hathaway stated that it has been noted that there are a number of roads that are in deficiency.
Councilor Perkins outlined that he had encouraged the increase. He added that it doesn’t seem like the Town has done a very good job of keeping up with roads.
Member of the public Todd Lynch outlined that the Town should be putting money towards the community center. Chairman Hathaway stated that bonding has been discussed with the advisory committee, however, they would like to continue doing what they are doing, which is applying for grants.
Member of the public Gary Brooks stated that he attended the last Budget Committee meeting and a lot of the Council meetings. He outlined that the Budget Committee seems to be concerned with snowplowing and the curbing that has been ripped up. He has not heard comments about the curbing being that bad. He added that when Public Works did the plowing a couple years ago, there was quite a bit of curbing ripped up and its never been replaced. Mr. Brooks stated that another concern he thought he heard was on the wages of the Town employees. It had sounded like the Council was holding wages down and he has not heard the Council make any motions or pass any declaration to hold wages. Mr. Brooks stated that last year some of the department heads were really
“brow beaten”. One of the former Budget Committee members wanted to do away with the police department, parts of the public works department and parts of the parks and recreation and Mr. Brooks was glad that it didn’t happen.
A resident inquired about Bangor Gas and whether anything has been done on the Town Council side to encourage the growth of the gas line. Chairman Hathaway stated that the Council had them into to a meeting a few months ago. They expressed no plans to expand.
Councilor Perkins inquired about the estimate the Town received for an antenna for the water tower and whether that had been discussed in the budget. Manager Reed stated that staff will give the recommendation to use money unspent to fund that purchase at the end of the year.
Councilor Perkins inquired what CATV stood for. Manager Reed stated it was the cable fees. He also inquired what NPDES stood for and why it was now $0. Manager Reed stated it was stormwater and it changed to $0 because it has been combined with MS4 Compliance in another part of the budget. Councilor Perkins inquired why there was no increase on gasoline in the Fire Department’s budget. Fire Chief Gerry Martin stated that the department has founds ways to save but they may have to increase it next year.
Councilor Perkins inquired why overtime was being budgeted for in the Public Works Department’s budget. Manager Reed outlined that Superintendent Stoyell put it in as a safety, not to say that they will use it. It would cover call in items like burials. Councilor Perkins noted that on the capital improvement plan the current fiscal year is not listed and wondered how it compared to how the Town is putting aside money now. Manager Reed outlined that a lot of the same items are being budgeted for, however, a few of the larger items like the dump trucks have been eliminated and there is an increase in highway projects.
Councilor Perkins inquired what “Recreation Issues” was on the capital improvement plan. Manager Reed stated its for things for the Recreation Department or Conservation Commission for the trails. Councilor Perkins outlined that the Public Works Department now has 2 employees but their uniform cost is budgeted for the same amount as the Police Department which has a lot more employees. Manager Reed stated that he would have to ask Superintendent Stoyell.
Chairman Hathaway inquired about the “BAT” assessment and the fact that he thought it should be less. Manager Reed outlined that it was budgeted as a safety, any unused portion will be used for the next year. Chairman Hathaway also inquired about the RSU assessment and state funding. Manager Reed stated that originally the Superintendent stated they were going to have a $30,0000 surplus but then he called back and said it was only $1,700. Overall the Superintendent stated that it would be safe to use current assessment figure but in the end the amount should be less. Manager Reed stated that as far as state funding went, the RSU loses $30,000 but Veazie has an offset.
Member of the public Tammy Olson inquired why some items weren’t being budgeted for this year but then they were for the next few years. Why was it decided to skip this year she wondered. Chairman Hathaway stated that the Town is required to have a five year capital plan, however it is not set in stone, it is more of a “wish list”.
Councilor Perkins inquired on the projected removal date of the dam and how much tax revenue will be lost. Manager Reed stated that the project is moving a lot slower than they thought it would. The Howland dam and Great Works dam have to be removed first then there is a two year window to do the Veazie dam. Manager Reed stated that approximately $120,000 will be lost in tax revenue.
Motion By: Councilor Friedman—to close the public hearing and reconvene regular session. Seconded: Councilor King, Voted 5-0 in favor.
Motion By: Councilor Friedman—to accept the budget presented by the Budget Committee and sign the Town Warrant. Seconded: Councilor King, Voted 5-0 in favor.
ITEM 6a. Community Center Rental Agreement
Manager Reed outlined that the lease agreement for the community center had expired and was looking for direction. He noted the use of oil for the year was 3000 gallons so rent may need to be adjusted.
Councilor Friedman stated that other people use the building and wondered if they pay rent. It was noted that the AA group does pay a small fee, however they are non-profit and are entitled to use it for free. Councilor Friedman stated that he would like to table it and get some input from the community center committee. Councilor Perkins stated that he agreed with Councilor Friedman. Chairman Hathaway stated that he didn’t mind waiting but if there is a 30% increase in oil cost then he’d like to see the rent adjusted to reflect that.
ITEM 6b. Departmental Updates & Review
Manager Reed outlined that Superintendent Stoyell had put together a memo elaborating on nuisance work. There was also a memo on the projected savings from the ground maintenance contract. Deputy Clerk Karen Humphrey had written a memo on online services and forms. Recreation Director Rob Young had written two memos, one on rate increases and another on a potential online software.
Councilor Perkins inquired on the projected revenue increase. Director Young stated it would be about a $11,000 increase.
ITEM 6c. Assessor’s RFQ Discussion
Chairman Hathaway stated that it has been recommended that this item but tabled until the Assessor returns.
ITEM 7. Additions by Council
There were no additions made by the Council.
ITEM 8. Manager’s Report
The Town Council reviewed the following items:
a. a copy of an email from Superintendent Smith outlining no local tax increase.
b. a copy of an email from Barney Silver and Manager Reed’s follow-up pertaining to the ride around to view and address damage.
c. a copy of an email pertaining to natural gas expansion.
d. a copy of a damage complaint follow-up
e. a letter from Principal Nichols thanking the Public Works Department for helping them out.
f. a copy of an email pertaining to a basic repair on Wedgewood Drive.
g. a copy of a certificate of labor training.
h. a copy of an email pertaining to the Veazie Land Trust Trail Day.
i. copies of the two newsletters that went out recently.
ITEM 9. Requests for Information and Town Council Comments
Chairman Hathaway asked Manager Reed to follow-up on curbing issue. He also inquired where the Town stood with other snowplowing damages. Manager Reed outlined that anything considered excessive would be taken care of, anything incidental the Town would address. Manager Reed stated that he, the Public Works Superintendent and Mr. Silver did a ride around and made up a list of damages and who would be responsible for ones. Chairman Hathaway suggested facilitating a meeting and discussing things with the contractor to try to avert the same things from happening again in the future.
Chairman Hathaway outlined that a lot of trash was removed from the trails over the weekend at the Spring Trail Day on Saturday.
Member of the public Gary Brown inquired whether any decision had been made on the town report. It was noted that it would be printed and mailed.
ITEM 10. Warrants: Town Warrant 23 and Town Payroll 23 were circulated for signature.
ITEM 11. Adjournment: Motion: Councilor King—to adjourn the May 9, 2011 Town Council Meeting. Seconded: Councilor Perkins. There was no further discussion. Voted 5-0. Meeting adjourned 8:27 pm.
A true record, Attest:
Town of Veazie