Regular Meeting of Monday February 14, 2022 at 6:00 PM
At South Hero Town Hall and via Zoom
Board Members Present: David Carter/Chairman, Ross Brown/Vice Chairman, Chuck Hulse, Anne Zolotas
Board Members Not Present: Skip Brown
Others Present: Kim Julow, Town Clerk/Treasurer, Martha Taylor-Varney, ZA; Peter Zamore; Andy Julow; Tim Maxham; Michael Frett (via Zoom); Kathy McGill (via Zoom); Greta Brunswick (via Zoom).
- Called to Order:
-The meeting was called to order by Chairman Carter at 6:00 pm
- Adjustment to Agenda:
–Chuck Hulse made a motion to acknowledge the minutes of the meetings of January 24, 2022 and February 2, 2022. The motion was seconded, all in attendance so voted and the motion carried.
- Public input:
- Andy Julow of the Lake Champlain Islands Community Development Corporation spoke to the Board. He explained that funds are available through the VT Agency of Commerce and Community Development for village revitalization. Options to consider can include: a ‘Master Plan’ vision for the Town, how does the Town want its ‘gateways’ to look?; and landscaping/
streetscaping of roads and state highways. There was discussion about the importance of public input. Funding possibilities include Better Places Grants and ‘mini TIF’ (Tax Incremented Financing). Ross Brown added that the Bayview Crossing Sr. Housing development should prompt the call to improve safety for walking and bicycling with the improvement of sidewalks and crosswalks.
- New Business:
- A. Peter Zamore gave the Board an update on the South Hero Wastewater Committee:
– He asked the Selectboard to appoint Nate Hayward as an additional member of the committee. Ross Brown moved to appoint him; Anne Zolatas second; all in favor.
– Greta Brunswick of NRPC presented the Selectboard with a contract for $9200 of consulting work for the wastewater committee. Ross Brown moved to approve and sign the contract; Anne Zolotas second. All in favor.
– Peter and Greta explained to the Board that the committee has interviewed 2 engineering firms – Otter Creek and Weston & Sampson, for consideration to conduct a feasibility study. As part of the process, the Selectboard must approve that both firms are qualified, or to let the committee make that determination. Chuck Hulse moved to agree that both firms are qualified; Anne Zolotas second. All in favor. Chuck Hulse moved to allow the wastewater committee to negotiate for a contract with Otter Creek Associates; Ross Brown second. All in favor. Greta Brunswick noted that, if the Town successfully negotiates a contract with Otter Creek, that Weston & Sampson will be considered pre-qualified for future phases of work on any associated wastewater project. The Town’s contract costs with Otter Creek and NRPC will be refundable. The next step will be public outreach.
- B. The Board considered approving Town policies that are required as conditions of awarding Vermont Community Development Program grants. The policies include:
– Equal Opportunity
– Fair Housing
– Use of Excessive Force
– Policy of Use of VCDP Funds for Federal Lobbying
– Code of Ethics
– Drug-Free Workplace
– Sub-recipient Oversight Monitoring Fund
– Whistleblower Protection
– Texting While Driving Policy
Ross Brown moved to approve the policies; Anne Zolotas second. All in favor. Kim Julow will compile all Town Policies in one notebook. The Texting While Driving policy will be added to the employee handbook. Ross Brown asked that a placard re Texting While Driving be posted at the Town garage.
- Administrative Assistant Report:
- A. See the written report filed with these minutes (Below on the website or in Town Hall).
- B. There was discussion about the results of the PFAS well testing at the landfill. Chuck Hulse asked that the recent test results and report be posted on the Town website. The tests showed no signs of contamination in area drinking wells, but some contamination in the test wells. The extent is not yet known and will require further tests. The Board is waiting for vhb and the State to give the Town guidance on the next steps.
- Old and Ongoing Business:
- Ross Brown moved to approve and sign the contract with NRPC, not to exceed $17,650, for assistance with the 2023 Town Plan; Chuck Hulse second.
- Announcements and Communications:
- The Town Information Meeting will be held on February 28, 2022 as an agenda item on the Selectboard’s regular 4th Monday meeting. The Information Meeting will be Zoom only. The Board’s regular meeting will continue after the Information meeting.
- Other Business:
- A. Chuck Hulse moved to sign a revised adjusted order #22/16; Anne Zolotas second. All in favor. Chuck Hulse moved to sign order #22/17; Ross Brown second. All in favor.
- B. Ross Brown moved to sign liquor licenses for Jolly (10, Simon’s Island Beverage (1), and Lanes/Snow Farm (3); Anne Zolotas second. All in favor.
- C. Town Clerk/Treasurer updates: See article and budget discussions above.
- Recreation Commission (RC) update: Town Reports have been mailed. Ballots have arrived and absentee ballots are being mailed. Town Records going back 40 years were scanned on Feb. 9 and 10. They will now need to be indexed. Kim anticipated the digitalization will be completed by April or May, ahead of the previous schedule. Kim is also making arrangements for Selectboard members and Justices of the Peace to be available for election day, as well as for help setting up voting booths in the Town Office prior to Town Meeting.
- D. Recreation Commission update – nothing to report at this time.
- E. Road Department – Ross explained the possibility of wetlands on the Hill Rd. parcel that the Town wants to purchase for the construction of a salt shed. He is still looking at June 15th aas a closing date on the land. He also reported that John Beaulac is researching sweepers for the loader, to clean roads. The Town Garage needs a new heating system. They will be looking for bids from smaller local contractors. Chuck Hulse wished to acknowledge the great job the road crew had done during the recent snowstorms.
- F. Old White Meeting House – David Carter explained that if Article 7 is approved by the voters at Town Meeting, they hope to begin work on the foundation in late September so as not to disrupt Granny’s Attic.
- G. ARPA – Chuck Hulse reported that the ARPA committee is putting together a survey that they hope will be ready in a month or two to determine where the public would like the ARPA funds to be spent.
Additional discussion included the Grand Isle water district and if Grand Isle County towns can share systems.
– Anne Zolotas made a motion to adjourn 8:05 pm; second by Ross Brown. All in favor.
Respectfully submitted, Approved by,
Martha Taylor-Varney (ZA) David Carter, Chairman
Administrative Officer’s Report to Selectboard February 14, 2022
- I have renewed the Town’s SAM registration (required for Federal grants). The process has a couple more steps until it is complete. I anticipate these will be finished by the end of the month.
- Doug Allen of vhb has sent the report on test results at the landfill to the VT DEC Solid Waste Management Program.
- I received an email from Annabelle Dally, a communication and public involvement consultant working with VTrans for the South Hero Intersection Improvement Project (RTs 314 and 2). Construction at the intersection is scheduled for this summer. She would like to attend the SB’s March 28 meeting for a presentation to the public about the project, to include the purpose, the design, construction schedule and impacts, and ways to stay informed through the project. The public will be able t ask questions.
- The Planning Commission will be meeting with Greta Brunswick and Emiy Klofft of NRPC at their Feb. 16 meeting to continue planning for the 2023 Town Plan. The meeting this week will include discussions with the SH Land Trust, the Recreation Commission, and Local Motion. The Town’s 2023 Town Plan website will be reviewed, also, with a deadline to be online by the end of the week. The Commission encourages community members to participate.
- PC Chair Doug Patterson has submitted his resignation from the Planning Commission. His current term ends in June 2022, but he has chosen to resign early to allow a new member to come on board at the beginning of the work on the 2023 Town Plan. The Planning Commission wishes to thank Doug for his years of service to the Town. He will remain a member of the Development Review Board. An ad for a new Planning Commission member was in the Islander’s Feb. 9 issue and on the Town website.
Development Review Board:
- The DRB has 1 hearing scheduled for their February 23, 2022 meeting – a continuation of the Preliminary/Final Subdivision plat review for a 9-lot subdivision at 129 Ferry Rd.; a conditional use/site plan review for an accessory use (special events venue) at 493 US RT 2 in Keeler Bay Village was approved by the Board at their Feb. 9 meeting.
Recent DRB hearing decisions are posted on the Board outside the ZA’s office and now on the Town website. The ZA is coordinating with Skip Brown to put 2023 decisions on the Zoning webpage of the Town website.
Respectfully submitted, Martha Taylor-Varney (ZA and Selectboard Asst.)