Vassalboro Board of Selectmen
Minutes of the Meeting
June 9, 2022

Members Present: Rob Browne, Barbara Redmond, and Chris French

Others Present: Mary Sabins, Mary Grow, Mike Poulin, Rick Denico, Tom Richards, Lauchlin Titus, Mark Brown, George Hamar, Gene Field, Attorney Kristin Collins, Melissa Olson & daughter, Cathy Coyne, Kayla Krause, and Stacy Richmond.

1. Call to order – The meeting was called to order by Chairman Rob Browne at 6:30 pm. This meeting was the last Board meeting for Selectman Rob Browne after nineteen years of service on the Board. A short recess in the meeting was taken to celebrate Rob’s years of service with him. A card and gift certificate were presented, and cake was shared with all who desired to participate.

2. Minutes – On a motion made by B. Redmond, seconded by C. French, the Board voted unanimously to accept the minutes of the 5/26/22 meeting as written.

3. Public Comment – Former Selectman Lauchlin Titus questioned the Board about their plan to enter into an executive session to discuss what he presumed was the 14 Priest Hill Road dangerous building situation. Lauchlin read a statutory reference and stated that he felt the dangerous building situation is the people’s business with a right to know and that the discussion should be held in open session. Town Attorney Kristin Collins politely disagreed with L. Titus and stated that she as the town’s attorney will be giving confidential information to the Board and the executive session is authorized. The Select Board agreed to share some information with the gathered public after the executive session if the public choses to wait around in the lobby until the executive session was completed.

4. Executive Session – On a motion made by B. Redmond, seconded by C. French, the Board voted unanimously at 6:45 pm to enter into an executive session pursuant to 1 MRSA section 405(6)(E). Resident Ray Breton asked permission to join the executive session as he is an abutter across the road from the dangerous building. The Board denied Ray’s request, but Attorney Collins promised to provide an update to the public after the executive session. Police Chief Mark Brown and Town Manager Sabins did join the executive session. The Board returned to open session at 7:30 pm. Select Board Member Barbara Redmond proceeded to describe for the public the sequence of events that are planned to take place in the near future as follows: The Select Board will waive the procurement policy and authorize Town Manager Sabins to negotiate a contract to demolish the dangerous building. Once the demolition date is set, Attorney Collins will prepare letters of notification to the building owner to remove his personal belonging from the structure. It is the goal of the Select Board that the process will be completed by the end of July. A question & answer session ensued with the public in the room, and the public seemed satisfied that a plan had been laid out. After discussion and on a motion made by C. French, seconded by B. Redmond, the Board voted unanimously to waive the Procurement Policy and to authorize Town Manager Sabins to enter into and execute an agreement with a demolition contractor to expeditiously remove the dangerous building.

5. Solid Waste Contracts – Sabins explained that the current solid waste hauling contracts for both bulky waste and MSW (Municipal Solid Waste) will expire on August 14th. It’s time to consider whether to put the work out to bid for one or three years, or to renegotiate a continuation of the existing contracts for one more year. Discussion was given about the current high cost of fuel and the poor timing to have to put any type of service requiring transportation out to bid. After discussion and on a motion made by C. French, seconded by B. Redmond, the Board voted unanimously to authorize Sabins to negotiate with the haulers to extend their contracts for one more year. Lauchlin Titus commented that the contractors should be reminded that posted speed limits in town should be observed and adhered to, which they have not always been.

6. Compensation Administration Policy – Board Member B. Redmond stated that she had waited to vote for this new policy until after receiving voter approval for funding at town meeting. Since the funding was passed at town meeting, B. Redmond announced that she was willing to adopt the policy. Board Member C. French asked which month of the calendar will be used for CPI-W readings to determine future COLA increase amounts for staff wages. The consensus was that December should be used. On a motion made by B. Redmond, seconded by C. French, the Board voted unanimously to approve and adopt the Compensation Administration Policy to be effective July 1, 2022.

7. Reports – On a motion made by B. Redmond, seconded by C. French, the Board voted unanimously to accept the Road, Police, and Transfer Station Reports as presented.

8. Treasurer’s Warrants – On a motion made by C. French, seconded by B. Redmond, the Board voted unanimously to approve warrants #70, #71, and #72.

9. Other1. Sabins explained that a request has been received from Mike Vashon to purchase a sign to post in the newly paved parking lot at the North Fire Station to keep box trailers from being parked in that lot. Members of the public in the audience stated a sign was not needed as they knew the truck driver who is leaving trailer there. They would simply ask him to find another location to leave his trailer. 2. Sabins advised the Board that the Alewife Harvester’s five-year contract with the town expired after the harvest this year. She inquired if the Board wanted to put the work out to bid or if the Board would authorize her to negotiate another contract with the existing Harvester Ron Weeks who has done the harvest work for the town at Webber Pond since inception of the harvest in 2007 or 2008. On a motion made by C. French, seconded by B. Redmond, the Board voted unanimously to authorize Sabins to negotiate with the current harvest contractor and report back. Changes in the language of the current contract may need to be added to reflect a possible harvest on Outlet Stream. 3. Sabins stated that Transfer Station Manager George Hamar has requested to have the transfer station closed on Sunday, June 19th to celebrate the newly adopted Juneteen Holiday. That Sunday also happens to be Father’s Day this year, and both men at the transfer station would enjoy spending the day with their families. C. French moved, B. Redmond seconded, and the Board voted unanimously to close the transfer station on Sunday, June 19th to observe the Juneteen holiday. The other town departments will be closed on Monday, June 20th to observe the holiday. 4. At C. French’s request, PW Director Gene Field provided an update on the roadside mowing equipment he had hoped to rent. The vendor has told Gene the mowing equipment is for sale; if its sells, there will be no opportunity to rent the equipment. 5. C. French stated that he has asked Sabins to pull data from the Sheriff’s Department and State Police on the types of crimes committed in town. 6. B. Redmond asked about the portable toilet that has been installed at the Webber Pond Boat launch. Sabins said she recently researched that same question and learned that the China Region Lakes Alliance has placed the potty there for their staff who watch for plant material on boat trailers and propellers during the summer. 7. Tom Richards asked if the Town will reimburse the VFW for the expense they incurred to repair the flagpole at the old Town Office building in the North Village Area. Discussion ensued as to who owned the flag pole, now that the building is no longer a town office building. It was reported that Ray Breton now owns the building and presumable the flagpole. Tom said he will speak with Ray about the repair bill.

10. Executive Session to discuss a personnel matter – On a motion made by B. Redmond, seconded by C. French, the Board voted unanimously at 8:20 pm to enter into an executive session to discuss a personnel matter pursuant to 1 MRSA section 405 (6)(A). The Board returned to open session at 8:52 p.m. A motion was then made by B. Redmond, seconded by C. French and voted unanimously by the Board to accept the revised employment contract as proposed by the town manager. The Board and Sabins signed the amended contract.

11. Adjourn – There being no further business to discuss, the meeting was adjourned at 8:55 p.m.

/mss

These minutes were read and accepted by the Board of Selectmen on 6/23/22 with the following amendments: None.