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August 22, 2017 [SS]

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A discussion of improvements to the hazardous materials ordinance recently adopted, is proposed, and there is discussion from eight residents (including the fire chief) of that proposal, though it ultimately fails. Board chair Gary von Stange says there will be a public hearing in the future, hopefully before the effective date.

In Public Comment, many residents speak up with concerns regarding the handling of former Police Chief James Warden's suspension and departure.

Gail Henderson-King and members of the Tree Advisory Committee give a presentation showing the work done by the committee in the past year.

The Selectboard formalizes comments on Union Municipal District and Funding MOU for regional dispatch.

Bill Keogh of the Airport Commission and the Selectboard discuss a resolution on shared governance of Burlington International Airport.

The Selectboard formalizes comments on reclassifying Laplatte River Marsh Wetlands on Harbor Road North to Lake Champlain.

Next is the 2017 Organizational Improvement Plan, then a motion (carried) to support the recommendation from the Library Steering Committee to hire Neagley & Chase to provide construction management services for the new library renovations to town hall and municipal campus improvements. 

The Selectboard appoints the Town Manager, Joe Colangelo, and the Town Treasurer, Colleen Haag, as authorized representatives to act on behalf of the Town of Shelburne to withdraw funds from the fire truck bond of $970,000 approved by voters at the 2017 Town Meeting, and goes into executive session regarding litigation between Vermont Railways and the Town of Shelburne.

Field Producer: Ken French

Produced by VCAM.

We want to hear from you!
Please send your comments, questions, requests to eric[at]vermontcam.org.

[Note: Minutes reflect the order of the published agenda.]

1. CALL TO ORDER

Chairman Gary von Stange called the meeting to order at 7 PM.

2. APPROVE AGENDA

MOTION by Jerry Storey, SECOND by Josh Dein, to add an item to the agenda initiating discussion of improvements to the hazardous materials ordinance recently adopted.

DISCUSSION:

  Colleen Parker mentioned the plan to discuss the ordinance at a

scheduled Selectboard meeting in September.

  Jerry Storey explained businesses and persons have been put at risk

for the past two weeks and waiting until September will be a month and halfway through the 60 day implementation period stated at the last meeting. There should be discussion and consideration in detail of what might be agreed upon improvements and then have further discussion at the meeting in September.

  Josh Dein stated the ordinance as drafted is a good start, but there are still issues to address. The more information gathered, the more the ordinance can be modified within a better timeframe and that is in the best interest of the town.

  Dave Allen, Harbor Road resident, stated bad policy is worse than no policy. There is opportunity to put together an ordinance to benefit the citizens of Shelburne and take into account concerns of business owners and homeowners who store fuel oil and have everything at stake. The Selectboard is urged to have more discussion so there is an ordinance that is trouble free otherwise lots of lawyers will be involved.

 

  Matt Cota, Fuel Association, urged holding the discussion. There are Shelburne residents who depend on kerosene to heat their homes. The Selectboard cannot wait until September and have people get $800 per day fines. Businesses, emergency responders, homeowners depend on the fuel and need to know they can continue to operate in town. The ordinance bans the storage of this type of fuel.

  Jerry Ouimet, Fire Chief, read a statement that said contrary to the statement made at the last meeting that the Fire Chief supports the ordinance he is not in favor of the ordinance because the ordinance goes against the standards the Fire Department operates under. The ordinance needs review by experts from the state who work in the field of hazardous materials and deal with these regulations on a daily basis to ensure state guidelines and nationally recognized training curriculum required for fire service are followed. The Selectboard is urged to retract the ordinance until vetted by professionals to determine if a rewrite is needed or the current state and national guidelines are enough to protect the residents. The ordinance as written now overrides state and national guidelines which is not good.

  Chris Boyd, resident, said the state hazardous material chief and the EPA looked at the ordinance and said there are conflicting components in the document and to the state and federal regulations. The document makes conflict with other rules so there is potential for litigation for the town. The ordinance needs to be rescinded and a committee formed to look at where the Selectboard wants to be with the ordinance. To create a regulatory document that conflicts with state and federal regulations is not good. The ordinance affects every single taxpayer in town. Mr. Boyd suggested taking a hand vote of the people in attendance to see how they feel about the ordinance.

  Trampas Demers, Shelburne Limestone, said the way the document is written his business will have to cease operation in 46 days. Businesses cannot live with the rules as now written because they will be in violation due to the 500 gallon fuel storage regulation. People do not want to be in violation in 46 days and not able to operate. Mr. Demers urged slowing down and sending out a flyer to find out how many people are affected and how many will be in violation in 46 days when the ordinance is enacted. There is not enough time to do a public warning and the Selectboard cannot give exemptions. Slow down and get educated before enforcement.

  Stephanie Marko, resident, asked if they will be in violation by having a 1,000 gallon fuel storage tank that has been on their property for three years. Joe Colangelo said that would depend on the address. There is a buffer zone noted in the ordinance (250’ away from waterways and schools). Gary von Stange added the Town Attorney advised that people in residences would not be in violation.

  Ron Gagnon, resident, stressed the need to step back. Mr. Gagnon asked who said the Fire Chief was in support of the ordinance when the Chief said he is not. People are concerned the Selectboard is running this through.

  Sarah Thompkins, Falls Road, said the ordinance is being rushed through. The Selectboard needs to think about the people of Shelburne who want businesses in town. The ordinance will put them out of businesses. The goal is to make Shelburne a safe place, but this is being done the wrong way. The Selectboard needs to hear what the people are saying. The Selectboard is not listening. The voters elect the board members and can “un-elect” them.

  Chris Boyd, resident, spoke again and said the state haz-mat person and the EPA provided similar feedback on the ordinance. The EPA asked if the ordinance was written to have something to do with the railroad. It was learned the document was filed in U.S. Superior Court against Vermont Railways. Gary von Stange said the ordinance applies to the entire town and has been discussed for the past three years.

  Gary von Stange explained the ordinance was passed and the effective date was extended for 60 days so people would have opportunity to submit comments to be compiled and compartmentalized for review by the Town Attorney. The Town Attorney utilizes an agent for the review. Once the comments are compiled and analyzed there will be another public meeting for discussion and to address any further concerns. The ordinance can be amended at that time or revoked if appropriate.

There were no further comments.
VOTING: 2 ayes, 2 nays (Colleen Parker, Gary von Stange); motion did not carry.

Colleen Parker explained her choice to move the ordinance forward. No one from the public was in attendance for the first reading of the ordinance and the same process has been followed with other ordinance adoptions. There is nothing in the document that makes Shelburne less safe. The document is not perfect, but at least the discussion has been started and people can submit comments. More than one meeting is needed. It may be necessary to schedule a special meeting. It may be surprising to find out where the community wants this to go.

Gary von Stange stressed the Selectboard wants to address the ordinance and consider comments and advice. There will be another public hearing with an agenda item that is noticed and people will have the opportunity to speak. The intention is to do this before the effective date.

Jerry Storey pointed out there managed to be discussion of the item without being an agenda item. The item was not on the agenda because the earlier request was turned down​ as happened with the vote at this meeting. The vote sends its own message. The public is encouraged to continue to supply the town with information beginning with the Fire Chief and others with special knowledge because the Selectboard will rely on this. Be prepared to discuss specific proposals at the next meeting.

Gary von Stange advised communicating with the Town Manager about the application of the ordinance on your business or residence. The information will be compiled for the Selectboard to address.

MOTION by Josh Dein, SECOND by Jerry Storey, to approve the agenda. VOTING: unanimous (4-0); motion carried.

3. APPROVE MINUTES

August 8, 2017

MOTION by Jerry Storey, SECOND by Colleen Parker, to approve the August 8, 2017 minutes as written. VOTING: unanimous (4-0); motion carried.

4. CITIZEN PARTICIPATION & PUBLIC COMMENT

Hazardous Materials Ordinance

Matt Cota, resident of South Burlington, Vice Chair of the South Burlington DRB, and former member of the planning commission in Plainfield, acknowledged the hard work of the volunteers in local government. Mr. Cota said in his professional life he works for the men and women who deliver heating fuel and in the heating fuel field he considers himself an expert. Kerosene and diesel fuel which is banned in the ordinance does not blow up and is safely delivered in Shelburne and throughout the state and country every day. The Selectboard is urged to look at the comments and changes to the trucking and hazardous material ordinance. Mr. Cota offered to work with the town to ensure the people and businesses of Shelburne can continue to use kerosene and diesel fuel. There are no exemptions for kerosene or diesel fuel whether it is clear, dyed, or bio-diesel (Section 5.0).

Joe Colangelo clarified kerosene and bio-diesel used for heating are not prohibited.

Gary von Stange agreed the Selectboard needs to address concerns at the next public meeting. The concerns will be compiled, sifted through, and addressed to provide for a mechanism that is reasonable and appropriate to serve the purpose of the ordinance and still protect the people and make sure businesses can operate in a proper way. Staff will reach out to people with expertise to work cooperatively to reach a solution that makes sense.

Eric Benson, general counsel for Vermont Railways, said the minutes from the last meeting do not reflect a summary of the comments on the ordinance from the railroad. The railroad is categorically pre-empted from the ordinance. The comments submitted two weeks ago are available and it is hoped are considered.

Police Chief Suspension

Sean Moran, resident, said the way the Chief of Police situation was handled is appalling and the town will still be paying his salary as a consultant. The taxpayers pay the Town Manager’s salary and elects the Selectboard. Both have a duty to listen to the citizens. There is an arrogance and a “sue happy” attitude to the Selectboard and that bothers many in town. The legal budget is $30,000, but $300,000 was spent with the railroad litigation. The town sued and lost so it is time to move on. The secrecy surrounding the Police Chief situation needs explanation. The taxpayers have a right to know about the suspension and why it was thrown out which is costing more money to pay lawyers. The discretionary fund is not endless and the money could be used for fire trucks, the library, or to pay for more police.

Gary von Stange explained the separation agreement signed by Jim Warden and the town limits what can be said about the situation because it is a personnel matter. It is important for people to treat the former Chief with respect. Gary von Stange said the Chief has earned his respect and the Town Manager has earned his respect. Only basic employment information (dates worked, salary) can be supplied per the agreement.

Steve Metz, retired veterinarian, said he worked through three different police chiefs in Shelburne and Chief James Warden is head and heels above all the others. The manner in which the agreement was done is not in any way proportional to that. Chief Warden was not accused of a felony or charged with any crime, and therefore deserved a process from the outset that was respectful. The town failed to do this. It is hoped this is not the management style, the mortis operandi, of the town because it is not becoming and not appropriate. It is reprehensible.

Laurie Burkquist read a letter from Linda Rhiele, Falls Road, on the forced departure of Jim Warden who served the community with integrity and compassion, and deserved to conclude his career on positive terms. The way the situation was handled is unacceptable. Words were twisted to create the illusion of incompetence. The community owes Chief Warden a debt of gratitude paid immediately beginning with a public apology and ending with full compensation. The Selectboard is asked to reflect on the impact of Joe Colangelo’s words and actions which do not reflect the community.

Ken Albert, resident and former Selectboard and Planning Commission member for 28 years of service in town government, spoke about Shelburne’s amazingly loyal and dedicated employees and volunteers. Shelburne prides itself on having a cohesive community, but something has changed and people are losing trust. What happened to the Chief is a wakeup call. Someone with 30 years of service having to defend themselves and the Selectboard and staff jumping through hoops to justify what was done is terrible. Mr. Albert urged the board members to do some introspection and ask what was done wrong and how to do better. Talk to the people in Shelburne and tell them a mistake was made, but the Selectboard will do better next time.

A resident read a letter expressing disappointment in the forced retirement of the Police Chief and questioned the Town Manager’s management style. A needs assessment and action plan should have been done in collaboration with Chief Warden. There should have been a conversation, not a suspension. The community is unhappy with the management style of Joe Colangelo and hopes the Selectboard will rectify the wrongful treatment of Jim Warden and listen to the community.

Pam Loeb, resident, mentioned moving from a metropolitan area to Shelburne and meeting Jim Warden who is very generous, encouraging, friendly, compassionate, concerned for the residents, and takes the time to answer questions. The community loves Chief Warden and wants to thank him for 30 years of service. Chief Warden should have been able to leave the job with dignity.

Stephanie Marko, resident and chiropractor, mentioned the good relationship she has with the Police Department. People want the town to be safe. Chief Warden had great stories and was here for 30 years. Most employees leave after 30 years with a celebration, but instead the Chief had his name smeared all over the place without any real apology or any respect. The Chief always kept the residents informed about what was going on in their neighborhood so people could feel safe, but the Facebook page was taken down without explanation. Chief Warden always was great with the children. It is not clear how the town can make it right with the Chief at this point. The people would like to know the Selectboard’s feelings about the situation. Ms. Marko asked the proper procedure to ask the Police Chief to leave before his retirement. Gary von Stange said the information is in the press release that was agreed to by both parties. The document is posted online.

Josh Dein confirmed the Selectboard Chair was clear about what can be said per the signed agreement. The Selectboard had no role in the suspension and was not informed until after the fact. There was no information presented to the Selectboard as a personnel issue. The Selectboard was not informed of any rationale for suspension. There was a conversation between the attorneys, but the Selectboard was not provided information regarding the issues involving the Chief. The Selectboard was presented with a settlement agreement that was signed by the Chief. The responsibility of the Selectboard is to approve contracts. Mutual agreements were presented with the document without any additional information. The Selectboard could only approve the agreement as stated.

A resident asked if the Town Manager reports to the Selectboard. Gary von Stange explained statutorily the Police Chief reports to the Town Manager and not the Selectboard. The Town Manager reports to the Selectboard per Title 24 and the town charter, Section 147. The statute provides for staff to report to the Town Manager. The Selectboard is volunteers. The Town Manager is like the Chief Executive Officer of the town who administrates. The Selectboard is the legislative body that sets policy. It is not the Selectboard’s role to oversee staff, only the Town Manager. Had there been appeal of the decision with the Police Chief that would come to the Selectboard and if the Selectboard had prior knowledge that could have possibly tainted the entire process due to ex parte communications. The separation agreement signed by the Chief and that the Selectboard agreed to sign provides for details of employment issues as private and cannot be discussed. Gary von Stange said he respects the Chief and the Town Manager and no member of the Selectboard has been disrespectful. Jerry Storey added the reason for exclusivity with the Police Chief and the Town Manager is so people on boards cannot hire/fire. This protects the employee. Personnel matters by federal and state law are confidential. It is recognized this is a frustrating and difficult situation.

Laura Cauley, Falls Road, spoke in support of Chief Warden and his family and the sacrifice they made for the town. Ms. Cauley said she is disappointed and disheartened with how the Chief was treated and as a resident wants to apologize for the poor treatment and thank him for his years of service and thank his family for their sacrifice. After 30 years of service the Chief deserved better.

Marilena Juxto-Jones, resident, said she always felt safe because the Chief had an eye on things and made everyone in town feel safe. The way the Chief was treated is disgusting. The town has now lost two big hearts with the Chief and Colleen Haag retiring. Ms. Juxto-Jones said she was disgusted and appalled by the interview of the Town Manager on Channel 3 (WCAX) news that used words like “sloppy work by the Police Chief”. The town owes the Chief an incredible apology.

Tom Thompkins, Falls Road, asked if the Town Manager was involved in taking down the Shelburne Police Facebook page. Joe Colangelo confirmed he was involved.

Craig Wooster, Shelburne, echoed comments that the Selectboard needs to listen to the people and to step back from what seems to be a rushed effort.

Joan Lenes, resident, expressed sadness at how the situation with the Police Chief transpired and asked the members of the Selectboard as public servants to ask the how of this, not the what. In other words how to get this resolved in the most respectful way that makes the town proud.

Vivian Jordan, resident, asked who hired the Town Manager and who approved the significant raise in salary after three years. Also, why the Facebook page was taken down needs to be answered. Ms. Jordan observed that when things are kept secret the fingers point to the secret keepers.

Gary von Stange explained a committee with community and staff members interviewed the candidates for the Town Manager position and unanimously selected Joe Colangelo. The salary increase was implement after three years to keep the position competitive with other town and county positions. The Town Manager answers to the Selectboard. The Town Manager was involved in shutting down the Facebook page. Regarding secrecy, the Selectboard in the past acted in secrecy, but that has since changed and there is transparency. Selectboard materials are provided to the public, posted on the website and other social media. A report from the Town Manager is posted every Friday on events that took place during the week. The Ethics and Conflict of Interest ordinance was amended to specify service on any town board or committee is to serve the town and for no other interest beyond that. The Selectboard has not ever made a decision where there is personal or financial interest. Recusal is required to avoid the appearance of impropriety. The town website provides information on every board and every activity. Everything is being done to be open and transparent. Everyone wants more information on Jim Warden, but employment laws do not allow this and the signed agreement says this cannot be done.

Steve Metz, resident, spoke again stating that the Town Manager reports to the Selectboard and is empowered to make employee decisions. Chief Warden was not just an employee, but was a 30 year servant to the town that set the town apart from many other towns. Lots of police chiefs depart employment without arousing this kind of feeling in town. The damage to Chief Warden has been done. It is hope the process that was used does not become the mortis operandi of the Town of Shelbunre. There was terrible lack of judgment with a 30 year servant of the town, not just an employee, who made such an impact on residents. There was a terrible error in judgement not to have suitable discussion before making a decision of this magnitude and impact. It is alarming the Selectboard was not informed because the Selectboard should have been informed about this matter.

Carol Del Fossi, resident, said 24VSA1932 says there must be a hearing to suspend the Police Chief and the agreement has a disparagement clause, but the humiliation of Chief Warden was a disparaging act. The agreement signed by Chief Warden was after he was humiliated; it simply was a disparagement. Gary von Stange said 24VSA1932 provides for a hearing at the request of the employee.

Josh Dein expressed appreciation to everyone for coming to the meeting and expressing kind words about Jim Warden. Hopefully the Chief is viewing the proceeding and can hear the sentiments for himself. Mr. Dein said he personally regrets any negative impact on Jim Warden who is a remarkable person. Regarding the Selectboard listening to the people, it is worth the Selectboard making a decision to review the process that has taken place so citizens can be assured all was done properly and to project a level of confidence and integrity into the workings of the town.

Colleen Parker said it is an awful position to be in when nothing can be said. Jim Warden is an amazing person. Joe Colangelo is an amazing person. What happened is now sealed, but both parties did come together on the agreement.

5. SELECTBOARD COMMENTS

Josh Dein clarified comments made under “Selectboard Comments” are comments of individual board members and not statements by the full board unless there is a vocal agreement about the statements. It is important those who cover events in Shelburne accurately report the affairs without fear of reprisal. This extends to citizens who come before the Selectboard to make comments that those comments can be made without concerns. If the Selectboard makes a decision on an agenda item it is identified as such otherwise comments under “Selectboard Comments” are just comments by members of the Selectboard. Jerry Storey thanked the business and professional groups, vendors, and town staff for Shelburne Days which was a demonstration of how unique the town is.

6. TOWN MANAGER’S REPORT

No report.

7. CBC ANNUAL REPORT: Tree Advisory Committee

Hope Johnson reported Treebeard was unable to attend the meeting because he is having his roots dyed.

Gail Henderson-King and members of the Tree Advisory Committee in attendance gave a presentation showing the work done by the committee in the past year. The following was highlighted:

  The committee continues to pull together the requirements for Tree City USA designation.

  Trees have been planted at Shelburne Beach.

  The committee staffed a booth at Shelburne Day and held the annual tree raffle.

  A tree inventory is being done using IPads supplied by the state.

  Tree care and maintenance is ongoing.

  Publications on best management practices are being reviewed.

  The committee worked with the Rec Dept. on a landscape master plan.

  The committee works with the Highway Department on maintenance of trees in the public right-of-way.

Gary von Stange asked the benefit of Tree City USA designation. Hope Johnson said there is more visibility for grants and the investment by the community in maintaining healthy trees in town. David Hall added educational opportunities open up and more outside groups may volunteer to help with trees in town.

Lee Krohn, CCRPC, stated Regional Planning assisted with the tree maintenance plan. The Tree Advisory Committee is very active and does great work for the town.

8. FORMALIZE SELECTBOARD COMMENTS ON UNION MUNICIPAL DISTRICT AND FUNDING MOU FOR REGIONAL DISPATCH

Lee Krohn reported the goal is to collate comments on the draft charter for regional dispatch and the MOU on funding from the towns into a coherent whole. The charter must be approved by the Attorney General and then approved by the voters. The process of receiving comments from each town is halfway complete.

Ann Janda noted some comments from Shelburne include rotating the Chair and Vice Chair positions on the union municipal district board on two year terms, and clarifying the initial funding language in the MOU.

Jerry Storey questioned having only three out of eight towns triggering the agreement, expressing concern the authorizing body would be corporately triggered with just three out of eight towns. Also, the public will ask if regional dispatch is cheaper or more expensive. It is unwise to project costs the way it is being done. Per the MOU the contracting municipality pays its share to include capital costs. Finally, rotating the Chair between communities each year may not be preferable to changing the Chair ever three years. Lee Krohn explained regional dispatch is being built incrementally and three communities is the critical mass to make it work. The model being followed already exists and is working. The projections of cost are such because it is not known what towns will join. A savings is not promised, but based on national data significant improvements in public safety are expected.

Josh Dein stated Shelburne already has a dispatch system so the question is whether Shelburne will be contributing more. There should be cost comparison to join as a member or as a contract. Lee Krohn pointed out a member has a say in governance. Shelburne does incur cost associated with running a PSAP, but also receives revenue from the state as well as equipment and contracting agencies. The idea with joining the regional dispatch district is to hold communities harmless financially in the first year. Joe Colangelo added the government structure of the district will allow for a regional approach.

Jessie Baker, Winooski City Manager, said the towns will have opportunity for additional input on the district charter and MOU after return from the Attorney General. The request is for comments on the document at this time. The document is not in its final form.

MOTION by Gary von Stange, SECOND by Colleen Parker, to authorize the Town Manager to present the comments by the Selectboard for consideration by the Joint Survey Committee for discussion.

DISCUSSION:
 Craig Wooster opined the savings that is projected will not generate what there is now in town with 24/7, 365 day coverage that has been the situation for over 60 years. The impacts of joining the district need to be understood.

VOTING: unanimous (4-0); motion carried.

9. RESOLUTION ON SHARED GOVERNANCE OF BURLINGTON INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

Bill Keogh, Airport Commission, addressed the resolution on shared governance of the airport, noting the following:

 The proposal for realignment of ownership of the airport is a misguided effort by the City of South Burlington because a change of ownership must be approved by the voters of Burlington per the charter and approved by the FAA.

 The FAA mandates how the airport operates and provides 90% of the funding.

 The growing issue between South Burlington and the airport seems to be the Pentagon’s decision to bring the F35 aircraft to the airport and the FAA program for acquisition of 200 homes. The airport had no say in either decision and was directed and funded by the FAA to implement the housing program. Individual homeowners have the right to sell their homes.

 Area communities are involved in policy formation as required by the FAA for future planning of airport activities.

  The City of Burlington might entertain an offer to buy the airport. The property valuation is $52 million.

  The airport operates extremely well and financially has improved its bond ratings. There are now five year contracts with airlines in place to ensure financial stability.

Gary von Stange questioned Shelburne getting involved in the agreement. Nic Longo, Director of Airport Planning and Development, said the concept of the resolution was in that the airport provides an enormous economic impact to the entire region, not just Vermont, but upstate New York and New Hampshire, too. The airport handles 1.2 million passengers per year which impacts businesses directly and indirectly. It is deterring the way the resolution was produced and miscommunicated. The airport welcomes comments and urges checking the facts of the resolution. The invitation is open to come to the airport to view the operations.

Josh Dein asked why not have regional operations where all communities contribute and possibly make the airport even better. Bill Keogh said the airport is owned by the City of Burlington so it is the city’s decision to regionalize. There must be some incentive to the voters to support regionalization. Also, there is the weighted vote issue. Nic Longo added the City of Burlington has a 100 year history of financial and direct impact on the growth of the airport. If communities want a seat at the table they must be willing to share in the financial risk as well. In 2013 under the leadership of Mayor Weinberger a strategic plan was formulated specifically about regional and other governances for the airport. There was an array of recommendations and in each one the airport improved. Everyone is urged to fact check and talk with the airport about aspects of the resolution before making a decision.

Jerry Storey said it appears the cart is before the horse in this case. Shelburne does have a commitment to regionalization and many people depend on the airport. A commission to look at regionalization should be formed. Nic Longo said the airport agrees discussion should be held which will likely be a continuation of the 2013 plan. To start, people should come to the airport and brainstorm the direction to take.

Jessie Baker, Winooski City Manager, said Winooski approved the resolution and generated a statement and letter from Mayor Leonard on why action should be taken now. Winooski is looking for a conversation. The airport is a huge asset for Burlington, the region, the state, and the northeast in general. Winooski wants to see the airport be successful and help strengthen it. Regionalization is a conversation happening on many fronts so why not the airport. Winooski is impacted because decisions are being made about the community with zero representation which is inequitable. Winooski should have a voice in the decision making chain. The airport administration is always willing for people to come to the airport and get information, but this is not the same as having representation. There should be conversation about different models that exist across the country. A change would have to go through the legislative process. The airport is highly successful and an incredible asset, but it was not made that way by the taxpayers of Burlington but by the users of the airport. It is critical that all who use the airport are invested in its future and have a voice in that future. It is hoped to get the best minds around the table to strengthen the airport over time.

Gary von Stange said if this is about the F35 issue, the Town of Shelburne voted in support of the F35 program. Tom Chittenden, South Burlington City Council, said the resolution is not about the F35, but about being pro-Chittenden County. Enplanements at the airport are not tracking with the nation and Plattsburg Airport is on the rise with Governor Cuomo’s assistance. With a regional board Vermont’s Governor would have a seat and there would be political capital advocating for the region. The resolution asks to have the conversation and look at models to benefit everyone.

Tim Barrett, South Burlington City Council, said the form of government at the airport where one municipality owns property in another and has an advisory board only was formed 100 years ago. South Burlington has no control on the entity in its town. The form of government should be 21st Century and that would be regional which is happening across the country. South Burlington City Council produced and approved the resolution with a vote of four to one. The nay vote came from the South Burlington representative on the Airport Commission who since has expressed support. Shelburne would be involved if the airport was to have regional governance. The discussion should start.

Gary von Stange said Shelburne is dealing with lots of concerns and has to prioritize issues. Tom Chittenden explained supporting the resolution only commits the town to support of continuing the conversation and to take action on the recommendation made by individuals who did take the time to look at the issues. Committee members involved in the 2013 plan were very informed and experienced in the airline industry and they recommended this approach.

Josh Dein said it is confusing to say Shelburne has much to deal with at this time, but rushed into the hazardous material discussion nonetheless. The resolution only asks to join the conversation. Joe Colangelo pointed out South Burlington and Burlington have been talking about the airport for a long time. Shelburne just received the information two weeks ago.

Colleen Parker said more information is needed.

Jerry Storey commented sitting down to have a discussion does not need a resolution.

Jessie Baker offered to provide information from Winooski if that is helpful. Winooski’s experience even with voted and approved resolutions to add more voices to the table has been no response from the airport. Nothing in writing has been received in the last 10 months. Shelburne is being asked to join because more voices are needed in order to be heard. Winooski has not had success in asking for the conversation.

Bill Keogh offered to provide more detail on the thumbnail sketch he gave of the airport’s position on the resolution and to address the information in the resolution in detail.

10. FORMALIZE SELECTBOARD COMMENTS ON RECLASSIFYING LAPLATTE RIVER MARSH WETLANDS ON HARBOR ROAD NORTH TO LAKE CHAMPLAIN

Jerry Storey has taken the lead on the wetlands reclassification and reported the town is not prepared to make extensive comments at the public hearing on August 30, 2017. The Town Manager will be asked to request an extension of written comments to 9/13/17 so the Selectboard will have time to review the comments from the town at the 9/12/17 Selectboard meeting. Reclassification of the wetlands will impact several properties in town. Shelburne Natural Resources Committee has been asked for input. In concept the town embraces the concept of reclassification, but there are matters that require further research. Jerry Storey said he will make opening remarks for the town at the August 30th public hearing and introduce the individual from Shelburne Natural Resources Committee who will make a statement. Written comments will also be submitted.

Susan Moegenburg, member of the Shelburne Natural Resources Committee and a professional ecologist, said there are impacts to private property, town structures, and potential future development with the reclassification which is based on ecological functions and criteria. In addition to giving a statement at the hearing, questions will be submitted and a longer extension requested because there are dozens of properties that may be impacted. The Agency of Natural Resources will be invited to come to Shelburne to answer questions from the townspeople.

Gail Albert, Shelburne Natural Resources Committee, said Susan Moegenburg has been designated as the resident expert in the field and to be the spokesperson for the committee. Jerry Storey suggested there could be public meetings in the fall in town to further discuss and educate people on the value of the wetlands and issues of storm water.

MOTION by Gary von Stange, SECOND by Colleen Parker, to designate Jerry Story to replace Gary von Stange as the Selectboard representative to make comments at the ANR public hearing on August 30, 2017.

DISCUSSION:
 Josh Dein agreed with the direction being taken.

VOTING: 3 ayes, one abstention (Jerry Storey); motion carried.

MOTION by Josh Dein, SECOND by Jerry Storey, to appoint Susan Moegenburg to also appear on behalf of the town at the August 30, 2017 public hearing. VOTING: unanimous (4-0); motion carried.

Jerry Storey will prepare a draft letter noting the town has questions and wants to involve the community and would like to meet with ANR in the fall.

Jessica Brumsted offered to help with setting up meetings with ANR.

Gail Albert noted the Natural Resources Committee did discuss a plan should the request for an extension not be granted.

11. 2017 ORGANIZATIONAL IMPROVEMENT PLAN

Joe Colangelo stated the Organizational Improvement Plan is for human resource planning and guidance. The document is not regulatory. The plan is online and shows the current org chart for each department, benefits and issues, and a possible future organizational chart.

Josh Dein pointed out the Board of Civil Authority is not appointed, but is elected, and the plan calls for additional employees, but does not speak to how this will be funded. Josh Dein asked to see current job descriptions and a job analysis for proposed positions to help better understand the transition. Ann Janda said department heads communicated what they would want for more hours/staff in an ideal world (wish list). The plan can be reviewed to see if what is proposed makes sense to include in the budget. There are budget implications with the plan. Josh Dein said the town does not have a strategic plan on how to prioritize the organizational plan. A strategic plan would be an interesting way to integrate the organizational improvement plan. A longer timeframe is needed where the organizational plan, capital improvement plan, and the budget are viewed beyond one year at a time. Josh Dein requested this as a future agenda item.

Jerry Storey said the organizational plan is well done. Staff has sensitivity to the vision.

12. AWARD CONTRACT FOR LIBRARY RENOVATIONS TO TOWN HALL AND MUNICIPAL CAMPUS

With a quorum of the Library Steering Committee in attendance, the meeting was called to order at 10:20 PM. Colleen Parker explained good proposals were received and interviews conducted. The committee is recommending the contract for the construction management firm be awarded to Neagley & Chase if the bond passes for the library project. Joe Colangelo added the benefit of a construction manager is the team is complete and there is better management of construction funds, better communication and scheduling, a true partnership with contractors, guaranteed price, and an open book process. There is meaningful control of the project by the town from start to finish. Thorough due diligence was done before making the recommendation on the contract.

Jerry Storey asked about provisions for expenditures by the contractor should the bond not pass. Joe Colangelo said there are no funds for any work between now and the bond vote on November 7th. Any work done by the contractor will be volunteer or a community effort.

Sarah Thompkins, resident, said it is premature to secure a contractor before knowing the bond will pass. Joe Colangelo explained identifying the contractor puts no obligation on the town, but will allow the project to begin immediately if the bond passes. Colleen Parker added doing this now put the town in the best position for a competitive bid and to begin work if the bond passes. There was no risk to the town other than the time of volunteers who did the interviewing. Another member of the steering committee added the advantage of having the team together is the experts are willing to help get information out to the public about the bond.

​MOTION by Colleen Parker, SECOND by Jerry Storey, to support the recommendation from the Library Steering Committee to hire Neagley & Chase to provide construction management services for the new library renovations to town hall and municipal campus improvements.

DISCUSSION:
 A resident in attendance asked what other improvements are planned

to the municipal campus. Joe Colangelo listed sidewalks, storm water

retention locations, change of egress (curb cut). VOTING: 3 ayes, one nay (Josh Dein); motion carried.

With no further business and without objection the meeting of the Library Steering Commission was adjourned at 10:25 PM.

13. APPOINT AUTHORIZING REPRESENTATIVES TO WITHDRAW FUNDS FROM FIRE TRUCK BOND

MOTION by Jerry Storey, SECOND by Colleen Parker, to appoint the Town Manager, Joe Colangelo, and the Town Treasurer, Colleen Haag, as authorized representatives to act on behalf of the Town of Shelburne to withdraw funds from the fire truck bond of $970,000 approved by voters at the 2017 Town Meeting. VOTING: unanimous (4-0); motion carried.

14. EXECUTIVE SESSION and/or ADJOURNMENT
MOTION by Jerry Storey, SECOND by Colleen Parker, pursuant to 1VSA313 to find that premature public knowledge of litigation between Vermont Railways and the Town of Shelburne would place the town, the Selectboard, and persons involved at a substantial disadvantage. VOTING: unanimous (3-0)[Josh Dein recused]; motion carried.

MOTION by Colleen Parker, SECOND by Jerry Storey, based on the finding of premature disclosure providing a substantial disadvantage to go into Executive Session to discuss litigation involving Vermont Railways and the Town of Shelburne, and invite the Town Manager to attend. VOTING: unanimous (3-0) [Josh Dein recused]; motion carried.

Executive Session was convened and the regular meeting adjourned at 10:29 PM. 

Episode Number: 
330
Original Airdate: 
Tuesday, August 22, 2017

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