“To listen to a recording of the meeting please click here”: https://fccdl.in/8M8Q4AKzva first half
https://fccdl.in/f0xpMvkRo3 second half
dog_ordinance_adopted_06_03_2021_.docx Dog Ordinance 2021
DATE: June 3, 2021
PRESENT: Ann Kuendig, Joyce Stevens, A.J. Ruben
PUBLIC PRESENT: (all virtually) Rep. Kirk White, Caleb Hawley, Ian Sullivan
AGENDA MODIFICATIONS: TRORC confirmation of TAD Representative- C#2; VT RAD – C#3; VT State Police Response Time – NB#3; Cemetery Bid – NB#4
APPROVAL OF MINUTES: May 20, 2021 Regular Meeting
- Citizen Concern/Complaint – Noise Ordinance Inquiry
- TRORC – confirmation of TAC representative
- VT Rights & Democracy (RADD) – community engagement
- Rep. White Legislative Report
- Public Meeting – Recording Procedures
- Dog Ordinance – Delinquent Dog List
- Transition to .gov domain name
- Recreation Area – Plan of Action
- Summer Meeting Schedule
- Mask Requirement - update
- Insurance - new PVF&R vehicle
- VT State Police – response time.
- Cemetery Bid - award
NEXT MEETINTG DATE: Thursday, June 17, 2021
Ann called the meeting to order at 6:01pm. A.J. seconded. Ann presented Agenda Modifications (see above). Joyce made a motion to accept the Minutes of the May 20, 2021 Regular Meeting. Ann seconded. Minutes approved. A.J. made a motion to approve the Agenda Modifications (see above) and take NB#2 and OB#1 out of order. Joyce seconded. Motion approved.
- Citizen Concern/Complaint – Noise Ordinance Inquiry. This correspondence was withdrawn.
- TRORC – confirmation of TAC representative. George Deblon is the Town’s current representative and is continuing in that position. TRORC will be notified.
- VT Rights & Democracy (RADD) – community engagement. This pamphlet was reviewed, and Joyce will post a copy at the Swiss Farm bulletin board. Trish will also be asked to make copies and post on the Town Office bulletin boards.
1. Rep. White Legislative Report. Rep. White opened by saying that this year’s legislative session has concluded for this year. He reminded everyone that Vermont only has a part-time legislature. He said that they would be reconvening in a few weeks to deal with a few items and again in October to address some of the recovery funding. He noted that they have not spent all the money that was allocated. They have three years to do so. He reassured the Board that there will be money available to the Towns for specific projects or to use at their discretion. He noted that VTrans did receive extra money for some of their projects. He closed by encouraging the Board to contact him with any questions or concerns they may have in the future.
2. Public Meeting – Recording Procedures. Ann said she has been putting more research into how to promote more transparency and open communication between Board/Committees and the public. She reviewed the requirements that would be needed to have a laptop and speakers that would be used at any meeting that comes under the Open Meeting Law. These included a device (table or laptop) and Bluetooth speakers. Brian with Saguaro Technology will program them with specific software and capabilities and host instruction sessions for device operators. Trish will act as the central organizer, keep a calendar of meetings, and turn the device over to one person who will be responsible for its operation and recording. There will be a common library created for recordings. The Select Board will draft a procedure and protocol that will be used. Discussion. It was decided to have Trish shop for a small tablet or laptop what has Windows 10 PRO, blue tooth capabilities and a camera with 128G of RAM for storage. Estimates put the cost around $300 to $350. It is hoped that this will be available next month with the hope that the July meeting will be able to be held in the newly renovated Town Hall.
3. Dog Ordinance – Delinquent Dog List. A brief review of the last meeting’s discussion was presented, and it was agreed that there were two conflicting Statutes on how to deal with this issue. Previously, in 2001, the Town imposed a fine of $250 per dog. There was also the question of whether it was considered a “late fee” or “civil fine.” AJ moved to adopt the amended dog ordinance and rescind its current one. Ann seconded. All in favor. An edit was made to a draft provided by the Town’s attorney and it will be forward back to the attorney for final review. It will then be sent to the Town Clerk for printing and signature by Board members. It will also need to be advertised in the paper and posted in five different locations to allow sixty days for public comment. Delinquent dog list: There are 12 owners of 18 dogs that remain delinquent in getting their dogs licensed. Ann moved to institute the new policy of enforcing the licensing violation by having the Town Clerk send out a notice of violation and civil fine of $50 which will also stipulate that respondents will have 21 days to request a hearing before the Select Board or pay a $25 waiver fee. AJ seconded. All in Favor.
4. Transition to .gov domain name. Discussion. It was decided by the Board to remain with the current domain name pittsfieldvt.com.
5. Recreation Area – Plan of Action. The Board set up a workday where they could meet and inspect, make a list of items to order, or install what is needed to make the playground useable and safe. The date will be Saturday, June 5that 8:30AM. The Board was also asked to approve the ordering of a portable toilet for the summer and fall months. Ann motioned to have the Town Clerk contact the company that has provided this service in the past and have it in place until the end of
October. Seconded by A.J. Ann also said that Patty Haskins had contacted her about the benches and tables being returned to the Green for use this summer.
6. Summer Meeting Schedule. The members were asked for their input and the dates of Thursday, July 15thand Thursday, August 19thwere selected. The Board will also hold a special meeting to set the tax rate when figures from the State are sent, typically the end of June.
- Mask Requirement -update. The Board moved to update the Town’s mask requirements for all Town buildings and property. Fully vaccinated individuals will no longer need to wear a mask. Un-vaccinated individuals will be strongly encouraged to continue wearing a mask in these venues. Trish will be asked to post signs outside the Town Office to that effect.
- Insurance – new PVF&R vehicle. Caleb, representing the Fire Department, requested the Board to pay for the insurance and registration on a new ATV vehicle that they had purchased through fundraising money and donations. Caleb described it as a CanAM UTV 6z6 unit that can be used to pull a rescue sled from areas not accessible by ambulance. They would also like to purchase a wildlands unit for fighting forest fires. They are also looking at a trailer to haul the vehicle. They purchased the vehicle for $20,000 based on what they felt was the need of getting to more places that the trucks could not. Wilderness areas are being used more by bikers, hikers, snowmobilers, and ATVers. He felt that this would be beneficial to the Town. This would broaden the range of the fire department outside of the village. Discussion. The Board initially felt that they should not put any more Town money into the fire department outside of budgeted items. They felt it was not fair to the taxpayers to present this in the middle of the year. The Board requested that moving forward, the fire department should take into consideration the public component when considering a purchase outside of their budgeted items. Caleb was asked if they had exhausted their donations and he said that they had not. Ann noted that most of the fire department’s budget is made up of taxpayer money. A.J. made a motion to have the Town pay for the registration and insurance and moving forward try to have clearer communication during budgetary sessions regarding purchases in the future. Joyce seconded. All in favor. There was also discussion about money earmarked for paying off the truck loan. It was suggested that money be either earmarked or a percentage of donations be specific for repayment of the truck loan. Caleb said he would put this before the fire department members for their consideration. Ann noted that this past year a full accounting of the department’s bank accounts was not included in Town Report. This will be requested during the next budget session later in the year.
- VT State Police – response time. There was an incident recently in the Hawk Mountain development with a man destroying property. The Rutland barracks were contacted, and it took them over forty-five minutes to respond. The Board discussed how this could be dealt with in a timelier manner. Unfortunately, it’s just a fact that it is at least a half hour for either South Royalton or Rutland to respond to Pittsfield. It appears that the two barracks do not communicate with each other either. Joyce explained that the Town used to contract with the Rutland County Sheriff, but that it was not to the Town’s benefit financially and so this was discontinued. There was some discussion about having someone local who has training to deal with situations like this, but this was discarded as a possible liability issue. It was then suggested that the Board contact the main headquarters in Waterbury and discuss these concerns. Ann said she would get in touch with them to see if a meeting could be set up between Waterbury, Rutland, and South Royalton.
- Cemetery Bid – award. The project has been awarded to Harveys of Rochester for their bid of $12,130. The total project was projected to cost $15,547.88 with 75% of it covered by the Feds. The Town already has received the money for the 75%. The State still has to cover their portion but won’t until both this and the culvert project are completed. Ann made a motion to accept Harvey’s bid. Seconded by Joyce. All in favor.
Next Meeting Date: Thursday, June 17, 2021 at 6:00pm in the basement of the Town Office Building, both in person and virtually.
As there was no further business to discuss, Ann moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:10pm. Seconded by Joyce. All in favor.
Martha L. Beyersdorf, Secretary
Approved: June 17, 2021
Ann Kuendig Joyce Stevens A.J. Ruben