Board of Selectmen Minutes

Board of Selectmen Minutes for: 07-12-2010
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Board of Selectmen
Minutes of July 12, 2010
Selectmen’s Meeting Room
Falmouth Town Hall

Board of Selectmen
Present: Brent Putnam, Chairman; Ahmed Mustafa, Vice-Chairman; Mary Pat Flynn, Melissa Freitag and David Braga
Others Present: Robert Whritenour, Town Manager and Heather Harper, Assistant Town Manager
Absent: None

Executive Session
At 6:00 p.m., Ahmed Mustafa moved to enter into Executive Session for the purpose of discussion of character and reputation of individuals and to return to open session. David Braga seconded. Brent Putnam asked if the Board was required to waive notification. Frank Duffy said the parties involved only need a written notice 48 hours in advance, but the Board must vote to agree to waive requirements. Ahmed Mustafa revised his motion to include the signing of the agreements. David Braga seconded. Roll Call Vote: Melissa Freitag: Nay, Mary Pat Flynn: Nay, Brent Putnam: Aye, David Braga: Aye and Ahmed Mustafa: Aye.

Brent Putnam called the meeting of the Board of Selectmen to order at 6:50 p.m.

Sign Treasurer’s Notes
Carol Martin, Treasurer, and Laurie Clayton, Assistant in the Town Clerk‘s office, came before the Board to request approval of a sale of a General Obligation Bond Anticipation Note for $21,717,000. This includes two Roll Over BAN’s for the Falmouth High School ($18,800,000) and Wind I ($992,000) and one new money BAN for Harbor bulkheads ($1,925,000). Beneficial Bank had the winning bid with an interest rate of 1.25%. The premium offered will be $172,432.98. Mary Pat Flynn moved to approve the three notes with a net interest rate of 0.4538%. Melissa Freitag seconded. 5-Yes, 0-No

Board of Health Inquiry Update
James Vieira gave an update on the Boil Water Order. He met with Town Counsel in open meeting to discuss parameters and procedures. The report is in draft form, but the entire Board of Health has not had an opportunity to review the draft. The report will be given to the Board of Selectmen within a few days but not more than a week. George Heufelder did the interviews.

On Saturday, July 17, at 8:30 a.m. at Highfield Hall, the Board of Selectmen will have their retreat.

Minutes of Meeting - June 21, June 24 & June 28
With two corrections, Melissa Freitag moved to approve the minutes of 6/21/10. Mary Pat Flynn seconded. 5-Yes, 0-No. Mary Pat Flynn moved to approve the minutes of 6/24/10. David Braga seconded. 4-Yes, 0-No, 1-Abstention (Melissa Freitag). David Braga moved to approve the minutes of 6/28/10. Melissa Freitag seconded. 5-Yes, 0-No

Energy Star Awards Presentation
Megan Amsler, Chairman of the Energy Committee, presented the following awards:
Non-Profit Category: The National Graduate School of Quality Management
Individual Category: Ron Zweig and Christina Rawley
Business Category: Teaticket Market
Municipal Category: George Calise

Falmouth Selectmen’s Meeting 7/12/10

Continued Dog Hearing - Stephen & Sheryl Perra
For the record, Brent Putnam swore in Thomas Garland, Animal Control Officer; Stephen Perra and Sheryl Perra prior to any testimony they may give. Mr. Garland has not received any complaints until this week; the dogs were barking at night. Steven Peretsky, the abutter/neighbor, told Mr. Garland that everything is much better, but not perfect. Mr. Garland will continue to investigate any complaints and recommended that the hearing be closed. Ahmed Mustafa moved to close the hearing per the recommendation by the Animal Control Officer, Thomas Garland. Melissa Freitag seconded. 5-Yes, 0-No

Discussion of Dog Regulations
Barbara Schneider is working on dog regulations and may be able to come before the Board in August. Setting aside this amount of time allows the public to offer their opinion. This issue will be brought up again as a future agenda item.

Vote to Layout Seatucket Road
Heather Harper noted that is part of a 100% betterment program. Seatucket Road and Ashumet Valley are part of the final phase of improvements. As part of the process, it will go before the Planning Board and eventually to Town Meeting. Mary Pat Flynn moved to approve the layout of Seatucket Road as a private way. Melissa Freitag seconded. 5-Yes, 0-No

Cash Point - Continued Sign Hearing
Edgar Gevorgyan apologized for missing the first hearing. There are conflicting recommendations. The Design Review Committee would allow the sign but only in the first year of operation, but Eladio Gore, Building Commissioner, and Aaron Perry, Assistant Zoning Enforcement Officer, don’t recommend the sign at all. Mr. Gevorgyan has been using a free-standing sign over a four-month period without a permit. When questioned by David Braga as to why the sign was put out, Mr. Gevorgyan answered that business had fallen. He would like to use the sign for another three or four months and is willing to put it in the parking space. Mary Pat Flynn moved to let Mr. Gevorgyan use the sign up until September 30, 2010. Ahmed Mustafa seconded. Brent Putnam noted that it isn’t the Town’s responsibility to accommodate business. Mr. Gevorgyan picked the location. The Town should not be in the business of allowing sign variances. Vote: 3-Yes, 2-No. Melissa Freitag and Brent Putnam voted “No“.

Discuss Ballymeade Water Pressure
Austin Heath introduced Joe Clerico, who spoke of the petition from June 2009. Mary Pat Flynn gave a brief history of the issue. Since 9/28/09, Mr. Clerico said, nothing has been resolved. He noted three events that stood out: The first meeting on 11/20/09, mothballing and discovering William Chapman’s letter on 1/25/10 to Mass. DEP. Mr. Clerico believes there are errors and misstatements in Mr. Chapman’s letter. He discussed three documents which include The Water Distribution System Storage Feasibility Study.

Henry (Shen) Baxter, President of the Property Owners Association, expressed concern over water booster pumps. The tower, he said, isn’t high enough to service the residents. Something went wrong once the tower and pump were connected. What’s needed is to restore their water pressure. Mr. Baxter is requesting a vote from the Board that requires restoration of water pressure to Ballymeade in the most cost-effective way. An unbiased professional should be hired to find a solution.

Raymond Jack, DPW Director, said there has been a misinterpretation of the Feasibility Study. The Pump Station has nothing to do with the tank. Patrick O’Neill, from Haley and Ward, explained the Feasibility Study; it determines the Town’s water storage needs. The system was designed for that entire area to meet the needs of the higher elevations. The Booster Station was designed for a different elevation. A different elevation means different pressure.

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There was a discussion of what is acceptable PSI. Some residents only have 35 to 45 PSI; others have 70 to 80. The control valve, as it pertains to fire safety, was discussed as well as back-up systems. The Back-up system is properly designed and provides constant service to the area. Approximately 22 homes need domestic service pressure; they may need to install individual booster pumps.

Mr. Heath disagrees with Mr. O’Neill’s explanation of how elevation affects water pressure. Michael Lopes, a Ballymeade resident, was asked by Mr. Heath to get his pressure reading; he took a picture of it and this was shown to the Board. The reading was 20 PSI. Mr. Heath said system work is the issue. Ballymeade should never have been connected to the tower, he said, as everything was working fine until then. Hiring an independent engineer to work with someone from Ballymeade and the Board and who was willing to go to the DEP to find a solution would be appropriate at this time. Mr. Heath asked the Board to vote this.

Brent Putnam said the important term is money and was glad the residents want the quickest and least expensive solution. There needs to be a determination of the extent of the problem. Melissa Freitag thinks a pump is a practical solution. Regarding Mr. Chapman’s letter, David Braga asked where the money was going to come from to credit residents. Mr. Jack said that $35,000 allocated by Town Meeting would be used for Ballymeade parcels; CLSB would cover undeveloped parcels. The $2,500 noted in Mr. Chapman’s letter is a stipend for the 22 homes below 40 PSI and is paid as a lump sum. The balance would come as an assessment on the water bill over a 20-year period.

Per the DEP, 20 PSI at street level is adequate. In discussing a neighborhood solution, going house-to-house to get information was suggested. Until the Board has more information, it’s premature to do so. Mr. Heath said the Board has this information already. Chairman Putnam noted that the Board has Mr. Heath’s spread sheet and one the Town put together. Putting together a subcommittee consisting of Town staff and Ballymeade residents was mentioned. Chairman Putnam will contact everyone tomorrow and will report back to the Board next week. The Board has a timeline and an update and will proceed from there.

Vote to Establish Number of Constables and Interview and Appoint Constables
Speaking on the number of constables needed, Brent Putnam believes there is a need for more than what the Town presently has. David Braga spoke briefly on the concern raised by his comments on the necessity of constables being bonded. Melissa Freitag thinks the Town’s services are being handled adequately by the three present constables. Melissa Freitag moved to establish that the Town needs three constables. Mary Pat Flynn seconded.

Speaking during public comment, Rebecca Putnam thinks the Town should have as many constables as they can. John Costa asked, “Why not one more?” Paul Murphy and Richard Dunne also suggested more. Selectman Freitag noted that the Town only needs constables for three services which include observing Town Meeting and to serve warrants. David Cusolito, former Police Chief in Falmouth, was concerned about using constables for eviction purposes. It sends a bad message. The Sheriff’s Department can be used for such purposes. Ahmed Mustafa stressed that a person must be qualified to be constable. Vote: 2-Yes, 3-No. Melissa Freitag and Mary Pat Flynn voted, “Yes”. Motion doesn’t pass. Brent Putnam moved to establish that the Town needs five constables. Ahmed Mustafa seconded. 3-Yes, 2-No. Melissa Freitag and Mary Pat Flynn voted, “No”.

George Morse was interviewed for constable. He provided references from 23 citizens, four lawyers and his Pastor. He presented to the Board a statement from the Commonwealth of Mass. CHSB which shows no criminal court appearances, therefore, no criminal record. Selectman Freitag spoke of Captain Dunne’s report passed on by Chief Riello which doesn’t recommend Mr. Morse for this position. Mr. Cusolito asked for the document on ethics regarding Selectman Braga. Selectman Freitag asked Selectman Braga to recuse himself. Chairman Putnam stopped further discussion on recusement. Chairman Putnam asked Mr. Morse

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to explain an incident on 10/31/08 which caused Captain Dunne to dismiss him as eligible. No incident
report was filed by the Falmouth Police Department on this incident. Mr. Cusolito asked, “Shouldn’t
Captain Dunne be here?” Selectman Freitag noted that, as a municipal employee, she can’t speak against
her employer. Chairman Putnam said that the Ethics Commission found no problem. Ahmed Mustafa moved to appoint George Morse as constable. Ahmed Mustafa withdrew his motion. Ahmed Mustafa moved the following question: Does George Morse have the character and reputation to serve as a constable? David Braga seconded. 3-Yes, 1-No, 1-Abstention. Melissa Freitag voted “No” and Mary Pat Flynn abstained. Ahmed Mustafa moved to appoint George Morse as constable. David Braga seconded. 3-Yes, 2-No. Melissa Freitag and Mary Pat Flynn voted “No”.

Summary of Actions
1. Approve Parson Lane as One-Way - Church Bazaar - 7/16 & 7/17, 2010
2. Falmouth In The Fall Road Race - 11/1/10 - Falmouth Heights
3. Clarification of Vote - Falmouth Taxi Additional Permits
4. Approve Harbor Master Donation Account - Green Pond Dredging Bill
5. Petition for Reconsideration - Comcast
6. Grant of License - North Falmouth Village Association
7. Grant of License - Woods Hole Community Association
8. Approve Year End Transfers
Mary Pat Flynn moved to approve the requests. Melissa Freitag seconded. 5-Yes, 0-No

Summary of Actions Held
1. Marine Corps League Det. #125 - Voluntary Toll Booth for Charity
Mary Pat Flynn has an issue with the location of the event. There is no control. She suggests moving to the Jones Road portion of the Stop and Shop lights as there is a natural slow down of traffic. Melissa Freitag agreed. Move the location and/or date. For the record, Brent Putnam noted that Captain Dunne from the Falmouth Police Department has no problem with the request. The Falmouth Chamber of Commerce recommends approval where there is better traffic flow and a date when there is less traffic. Melissa Freitag suggested asking them to revise their application. Mary Pat Flynn suggested sending them a letter asking them to reconsider or invite them to come to a Selectmen’s meeting. Ahmed Mustafa moved to ask the Marine Corps League to come to the Selectmen’s meeting in two weeks. Mary Pat Flynn seconded. 5-Yes, 0-No

Discussion of Future Agendas - July 19
The Board discussed the agendas for 7/19/10 & 7/26/10. Brent Putnam wants to stay ahead of the agenda items so the Board can be better prepared. Melissa Freitag asked that the minutes of the June 14 Executive Session be added to next week’s agenda. The new ice rink for Falmouth Youth Hockey will also be added; they have asked for twenty minutes. It will be added after the discussion of the LIP Application as agenda item #6. Chairman Putnam asked for a policy discussion next week for the Whistleblower and Naming policy. David Braga will be prepared to give his presentation on Town policies.

At future meetings, Selectman Freitag suggested a discussion with the DPW Director regarding water and budget issues. The Conservation Commission should come in as well. The Board will also discuss the merger of the Treasurer and Accountant position and will work on the Town of Falmouth budget.

On the agenda for 7/26/10, the Board will have a joint meeting with the Solid Waste Advisory Committee to discuss the dump and tipping fees at the Transfer Station. At the 8/2/10 meeting, there will be a general budget discussion using strategy. The Town Manager will present a visual summary of the estimated budget at that time. Mary Pat Flynn said it’s important to look at ten-year projections. There needs to be a community discussion on what services the public wants to maintain or end. We need to define our community for the future, she said. The Board should come up with three issues to discuss; the $2.50 a bag

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expense is one issue. Topics will be finalized next week. On August 2, there will be a Budget Workshop. Selectman Flynn and Selectman Freitag agreed that the Board should remain flexible in terms of agenda items.

Individual Selectmen’s Reports and Review of Town Manager’s Report
The highlight of Robert Whritenour’s report was a $505,340 grant the Town just received for rehabilitation of housing stock.


Ahmed Mustafa moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:58 p.m. David Braga seconded. 5-Yes, 0-No

Respectfully submitted,

Deborah Aguiar
Recording Secretary

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