Regular Meeting of Monday January 25, 2021 at 6:00 PM
South Hero Town Hall
Board Members Present: Jonathan Shaw, Skip Brown (also Board Secretary), Anne Zolotas, and David Carter, Ross Brown in person.
Board Members Not Present: none
Others Present: Janet Yates, Town Clerk and Martha Taylor-Varney. Also see sign in sheet of in person and Zoom attendees. Attendance SB 01-25-2021
1. Called to Order:
-The meeting was called by Chairman Shaw at 6:00 pm
2. Adjustment to Agenda:
-David Carter made a motion to approve the minutes of January 11, 2021. The motion was seconded, all in attendance so voted and the motion carried.
4. Public input:
5. New Business:
A. Due to Covid-19, Town Meeting will be different. There will not be in in-person informational meeting and all voting will be done by Australian ballot. The voting for Town meeting will be either by absentee ballot or in person. The Town will not mail a ballot to every voter, so if a resident chooses to vote by mail, then they must request a ballot. Instructions will be included with the Town Report.
-The actual Town meeting vote will be March 2, 2021. The informational Town portion will be via Zoom at a regular Selectboard meeting on February 22 at 6:00 pm and the school portion will be separate at a date and time to be determined. More information will be forthcoming as the plan develops.
B. Sidewalks in Town are in the State right of way. The State does not clear them of snow. Some options are for each business or resident to clear the sidewalk in front of their property, have the Town road crew purchase equipment to do it, or to hire some entity to do it. The sidewalks are very close to the road so that snow gets piled onto them frequently when the State plows Route 2. The sidewalks are fairly narrow and they are not in great condition. A specialized sidewalk plow costs in the range of $80,000.-$100,000. Considering what to do, if anything, will be discussed at the next meeting.
C. David Carter made a motion to approve and sign the Certificate of Highway mileage. The motion was seconded, all in attendance so voted and the motion carried.
6. Administrative Assistant Report:
A. See the written report filed with these minutes in Town Hall or www.southherovt.org.
B. There are multiple curb cuts on the north side of Route 2 in the section from Hill Rd. to Wally’s Point Rd., some of which are not a direct access to a property. David Carter made a motion to approve and sign a letter that the proposed Arbor Farm tenant can share access from the Town’s curb cut to the West of the Old White Meeting house with the former “CIDER” building, that is part of the Cedar Ledge complex at 328 Route 2. The motion was seconded, all in attendance so voted and the motion carried.
7. Old and Ongoing Business:
A. The name “White’s Beach” of the Town owned property on West Shore Rd. has been used in South Hero for many years, due to it being adjacent to the farm of a family with the surname, White. It is not now, or has ever been, a racial designation. In any event, the name has caused agitation. Jonathan Shaw made a motion to rename the area “South Hero Town Beach”. The motion was seconded, all in attendance so voted and the motion carried. The understanding is that new signage and wording will need approval from the Selectboard. The current parking ordinance will need adjusting as to the new title.
B. David Carter made a motion to approve and sign the “Official Warning, Annual Town Meeting of South Hero, Tuesday, March 2, 2021”. The motion was seconded, all in attendance so voted and the motion carried.
8. Announcements and Communications:
A. See other business
9. Other Business:
A. David Carter made a motion to approve and sign orders 21-15 and to pay the bills associated with the orders. The motion was seconded, all in attendance so voted and the motion carried.
B. David Carter made a motion to approve and sign the Humane Society intake contract for dogs and cats. The motion was seconded, all in attendance so voted and the motion carried.
C. The consensus of the Board is that David Carter may speak with the Road Crew and Commissioner for Town business.
-David Carter made a motion to adjourn 7:15 pm. The motion was seconded, all in attendance so voted and the motion carried.
Respectfully submitted, Approved by,
Graham Brown Jonathan Shaw, Chairman
Administrative Officer’s Report to Selectboard January 25, 2021
1. The deadline to appeal the Mobile Vendor’s Ordinance was January 2nd. It became effective on January 22nd. I have already received inquiries for review.
2. I renewed the Town’s SAM registration (US Government’s System for Award Management) last week and received notification that the new registration is now active. This needs to be renewed annually and will be due for renewal before Jan 20, 2022
3. I will be attending a 2-part “Enabling Better Places” virtual seminar on Jan 26th. and 28th. Each session will be 1 ½ hr. This seminar aims to address housing challenges in Vermont.
4. The DRB had a hearing on 1/13 for a proposed Arbor Farm Market change of use for the old CIDER building at 324 US RT 2. One of the curb cuts used for access to this location is on the Town’s lot for the Old White Meeting House. At the Jan 11 SB meeting, the Board agreed to allow Arbor Farm Market the use of the curb on the Town’s Old White Meeting House parcel to access their parking area. In anticipation of a DRB condition of approval, I have written a letter for the Board to approve and sign giving the Farm Market permission to use this access onto RT 2.
5. I am scheduled to be deposed on February 18 as part of the Zlotoff appeal of Zoning violations that is currently before Environmental Court.
6. I received word that VHB was able to test the wells at the Dubuque Lane landfill on Dec. 2nd. The initial testing date required annually in October was not done due to insufficient groundwater after a very dry summer. The results still showed very high PFASs. Surrounding property owners were contacted last summer/fall for permission to drill test wells on their property to try to access if there was any PFAS contaminiation beyond the landfill site, but there was limited response. The State manager will try to get permission from the unresponsive landowners to allow the investigation to move forward. I have the lab results of the December tests for anyone who is interested – and can understand them.
The Planning Commission is now holding meetings via Zoom.
A. The Planning Commission is looking at its long-term schedule to update the Town Plan by August of 2023. Previously, the Plan was required to be updated every 5 years, but after the 2015 update the State requirements changed to every 8 years.
B. In addition to the 2023 Town Plan, current discussions include applying for a Better Places Grant for developing pocket parks in the village – at the ‘Honeymoon Cottage’ next to the Old While Meeting House, and on the greenspace behind the Worthen Library. The grant was submitted in time to meet the Jan 22 deadline.
C. The PC’s meeting on Jan 20 was canceled. The next meeting is Feb. 3rd.
Development Review Board:
-I have advertised for a new DRB Alternate. The Alternates’ terms are for 1 year. So far, no response.
– The DRB has scheduled hearings currently through February 2021. All hearings are being held via Zoom for the foreseeable future.
– Recent DRB hearing decisions can be found posted on the Board outside the ZA’s office or can be emailed upon request.
Martha Taylor-Varney (ZA)