Nathan Media Center
Fuller Meadow School
April 12th, 2011
Call to Order – Chairperson Lindberg called the meeting to order at 7:30. Present: Mr. Cresta, Mr. Houten, Ms. Jones, Mr. Prentakis and Town Administrator Mr. Singer.
Approval of Minutes - Mr. Houten made a motion and was seconded by Ms. Jones to read and initial the minutes to indicate their acceptance. The motion carried 5-0-0.
Approval of Warrants - The Board approved a Payroll Warrant in the amount of $419,910 which included the bi-weekly school payroll of $256,629 and a Payables Warrant totaling $623,507, which includes health care costs, payroll deductions and purchase of power.
Town Administrators Report
Mr. Singer reported that the Annual Town Meeting Warrant has been delivered to the jail for printing. Tomorrow evening the Planning Board will review any articles that require their recommendations. These include street acceptances and the citizen’s petition to amend the water use by-law. They may not choose to make their recommendations tomorrow night but they will be ready for Town Meeting. The relocation of the modular classrooms from the Howe-Manning to the Police station will also require Planning Board review. It will also be reviewed by the Zoning Board of Appeals and the Industrial Design Committee.
The next step in the School Construction Project is to put together the Request for Quotations for technology components. These will total about $500,000. Quotations will be sought from State qualified vendors with the hope of making the purchases in early May. Even with the state contract, a lot of time is required to get the best price.
Mr. Singer, along with the Police and Fire Chiefs, the Building Inspector and the Health Director met with representatives of Bostik. They are moving ahead with reconstruction. The cause of the explosion has not as yet been determined. They are only operating at 25% capacity but they have made a commitment to keeping all their employees. This is a big commitment on their part, and is important both to their employees and to the local economy.
The Middleton Farmer’s Market is making progress under manager Mike Costco. Mr. Singer passed around a copy of their brochure. The Market is scheduled to open June 22nd.
The packet contains the letter regarding the new requirement for a crowd manager, which will be sent to all establishments who hold a pourer’s license. Any license holder whose has an occupancy permit for 100 or more must present the Board of Selectmen with proof that they have met the requirements by June 1st. The Fire Chief has jurisdiction in this matter.
7:40 Presentation of Certificate of Bravery to Edson Andrade and Stephen Cornell – Chief Andrade and Stephen Cornell - On March 30th at approximately 8:50 a 911 call was received form JC Grill & Convenience Store on North Main. St. A robbery involving a gun was reported. Mr. Cornell was outside the store and observed what was happening. He tripped the robber as he left the store. Mr. Andrade then came out of the store and tackled the robber and together the two men restrained him until police arrived. The robber did fire his weapon at Mr. Andrade three times.
The police chief presented the two men with a Certificate of Bravery for their actions. He added that this would have been a very difficult case to solve if they had not restrained the suspect.
Recommendation of Screening Committee for Treasurer/Collector Appointment – Mr. Singer reported that the Screening Committee has chosen Mr. Donald Carter as their preferred candidate. He is currently the Assistant Treasurer in Ipswich. He has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Northeastern University and is a certified Assistant Treasurer/Collector. Mr. Carter introduced himself. He has been with the Town of Ipswich for 6 years. Before that he worked in financial management in the private sector for many years. He took the job in Ipswich with the plan of eventually finding a full Treasurer/Collector position and is very happy to be starting in Middleton. Mr. Singer said that Mr. Carter will begin work May 9th pending
completion of an acceptable employment agreement and a physical exam.
Mr. Cresta made a motion to appoint Mr. Donald Carter of South Hamilton as Middleton Treasurer/Collector pending completion of an acceptable employment agreement and a physical exam. Ms. Jones seconded the motion and all were in favor.
Review of Feasibility of Auctioning Tax Title Acquired Parcel of Land Abutting Mill Pond on Assessors’ Map 18, Lot 144 – Custodian of Town Lands, Robert Murphy stated that he would normally make this decision himself. However, because of the location of this particular property, he would like input from the Board of Selectmen before making that decision. He referred the Board to the extensive information about the property which is in their packets. Mr. Cresta asked if the lot were purchased by the owner of the lots on either side, would it be usable as a separate lot. Mr. Murphy said it would not. The Attorney for the developer says there is no plan to create another lot. Mr. Murphy has also spoken with the Building Commissioner and the Conservation
Agent and they agree that the lot is not buildable. Ms. Lindberg, who is also on the Planning Board pointed out that the Planning Board was careful that all drainage from this sub division would be aimed at this lot and into Mill Pond. The neighbors had been very concerned about drainage. She assumes that this would leave the lot extremely wet.
Mr. Cresta said that it seemed to him that selling this land would increase the size of the adjoining lots, retain open space and add to the tax base. He asked what the increase in value would be. Mr. Prentakis, who is also on the Board of Assessors, replied that the extra acreage for the two abutting lots would probably increase their combined value by $16,000 to $20,000.
Ms. Jones asked if the lot would be useable if added to property on Johns Ave. Mr. Prentakis said that although the lot was 42,000 sq. ft., it is unbuildable because of wetness and setbacks from Mill Pond, rather than just from lack of frontage. Mr. Singer added that it is also very steep.
Mr. Cresta made a motion to auction a tax title acquired parcel of land abutting Mill Pond and identified on Assessors’ Map 18 as Lot 144. Mr. Houten seconded the motion and all were in favor.
Mr. Murphy added that the auction would take place on April 27th at 3:45PM and will include nine other parcels of land. Notices to abutters will be sent out tomorrow. Five of the parcels have appeared in previous auctions with no bidders.
Approval of Ten Year Extension to Waste Disposal Agreement with Covanta, Haverhill Associates through June 30, 2016 – Mr. Singer gave some background on this contract. The original contract was signed in 1996. The original tipping fee was $50.00 per ton. Looking at the calculation from that time based on the escalator clause, the Town is paying what it expected. The current rate is $67.45 per ton. Tipping fees at the other two plants in this area do not compare with Covanta and Covanta has also had fewer operational problems that the other two. He recommends that the Board keep in place the contract that has worked very well. Mr. Prentakis asked if Covanta is entering into new contracts and are they charging the same rate to new customers that they are
to us. Mr. Singer said they are taking on new customers and losing some old ones. They are charging new customers at least as much as they are charging us. The new rate is $68.00 per ton with an escalator of ¾ of the CPI. He said this is a very good deal. He said that the Board could take the matter under advisement but it does need to be wrapped up by June 30th.
Mr. Houten made a motion to sign a ten year extension of the contract for waste disposal with Covanta of Haverhill. Ms. Jones seconded the motion and all were in favor.
Schedule Public Hearing for Application for Extension of Jeffrey Garber’s Class II Used Car Dealer’s License at 69 North Main Street (to be heard upon completion of application to Board of Appeals for Special Permit and Site Plan Approval) – Attorney Mann has presented a detailed plan of what Mr. Garber wants to accomplish. The matter must be heard by the Zoning Board of Appeals to approve the underlying zoning. Then the matter will come before the Board of Selectmen as the licensing authority. Mr. Garber will not object to the variance needed to expand the Police Station. Mr. Garber wishes to improve the appearance of his property by demolishing the house which is in disrepair. Attorney Mann would like to schedule the hearing with the Selectmen for the
first meeting after Town Meeting. The Town will also be requesting a variance before the ZBA. There is a question of whether the site will be exempt from the requirement to have certain green space as a buffer.
Open and Close Warrant for Special Town Meeting – Mr. Singer explained that the Town was forced to overspend the snow budget due to the unusual winter. The original deficit of $111,000 can be reduced to $80,000 to $85,000 through line item transfers within the DPW budget. There may also be some reimbursement from FEMA for one of the January storms. The article does not specify an amount for this reason. The Warrant will be handed out at Town Meeting. There is no requirement to mail any Warrant. It is something the town does voluntarily for the Annual Warrant.
Mr. Cresta made a motion to open and close the Special Town Meeting Warrant for May 10th at 7:25 PM. Mr. Houten seconded the motion and all were in favor.
Executive Session - Chairman Lindberg announced that the Board would be going into Executive Session under Chapter 39, Section 23B, Sections 4 and 8 and that the Board would not reconvene in open session. Chief DiGianvitorrio would also be present. Ms. Lindberg voted yes. Mr. Prentakis voted yes. Ms. Jones voted yes. Mr. Cresta voted yes. Mr. Houten voted yes. Executive Session was entered at 8:33.
Brian Cresta, Clerk