Conservation Commission Meeting Minutes – 11/7/16

Minutes for the Regular Meeting of the

Walpole Conservation Commission

November 7, 2016

 

Present:  Tom Beaudry (Chair); John Peska, Lew Shelley, Kelli Wilson, Alicia Flammia, Whit Aldrich (Selectboard Representative), Elaine Heleen, alt (acting as secretary)

Not Present:  Regular Members:  Duncan Watson; Alternate Members:  Peter Palmiotto, Gary Speed, Myra Mansouri

 

Call To Order:  Mr. Beaudry, Chair, called the meeting to order at 7:32 PM.

Seating of Alternates:  No alternates were needed to achieve quorum.

 

Review and Approve Minutes: Corrections: Under the section Maplewood Circle, the “main tree is on the” Mill Pond land not the Mason Forest land. Mr. Shelley moved to accept the Minutes of the October 3, 2016, meeting as corrected.  Mr. Peska seconded the motion.  With all in favor, the minutes were approved.

 

PUBLIC SESSION:

Report from Chair:

Treasury / BudgetMr. Beaudry reported that as of October 31, 2016, the balance of the Walpole Conservation Commission Savings Account is $88,458.97 and the Forestry Account is $21,622.97.   This includes $9,264.77 in deposits from Garland lumber.

 

Correspondence:

Mr. Beaudry received the following correspondence:

  • Monadnock Conservancy Newsletter (includes an article by Lew Shelley)
  • Connecticut River Watershed Council
    • 2016 Annual Report
    • Request to join CRWC and donate (tabled until next meeting)
  • Supply Line- DES newsletter

 

NEW BUSINESS:

Town Forester:  A draft of the RFP (Request for Proposal) for a new Town Forester was presented. Issues of timeliness of response, attendance at meetings, and single person vs a firm were discussed. As Ms. Flammia has experience with RFPs, she has volunteered to create a draft with assistance from other members. Mr. Peska moved to have Ms. Flammia put together a RFP for the purpose of hiring a new Town Forester.  Seconded by Mr. Shelley. With all in favor, the motion was approved.

 

Current Use Meeting:  November 20, 2016 in the Town Hall.

 

2017 Budget: For last several years the WCC has held to a level budget.  Without the budget reports, no changes are expected for the next year.  Mr. Shelley moved to keep the budget for 2017 the same as the 2016 budget.  Seconded by Ms. Flammia.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

 

OLD BUSINESS:

TransCanada Dam Relicensing:  There is a sale pending for all 13 dams, with tributary dams being looked at for sale purposes.

 

DES Inspection of Reservoir Dam:  This has already happened without notification of any Walpole residents including Mark Houghton or the Conservation Commission.

WCC Meeting –November 7, 2016- Page 2

 

Mason Forest kiosk:  Per Mr. Shelley, this will be at the top of the list for next spring as it will not be possible before then. Trail work will also be done at that time.

 

Cheshire County Conservation Annual Meeting: Attended by Alicia Flammia, Kelli Wilson, Elaine Heleen, Gary Speed, and Tom Beaudry.  The presentation on Coyotes was well done although Mr. Speed did add quiet editorial comments which were well liked by his tablemates. Eloise Clark and Rebecca Whippie were awarded Educators of the Year and did a marvelous job with their acceptance speeches. Ms. Flammia was impressed at the wide range of services and projects offered by the Cheshire County Conservation District.

 

Maplewood Circle: Mr. Speed is not available to report on the tree situation, but members agree that WCC cannot be responsible for limbs/branches hanging over private property. Mr. Shelley will look at the property if Mr. Speed has not done so.

 

OTHER BUSINESS:

Boat launch: Ms. Flammia noticed that the boat launch off Rt. 12 has a gate. It was explained that there had been damage to the property and inappropriate behavior. The gate only closes off vehicular traffic; foot traffic is still allowed.

Boy ScoutsAdam Terrill had leftover funds of $13.00 that had been raised for his Eagle Project.  He has elected to donate it to the Conservation Commission. Mr. Peska moved to accept the $13.00 from Adam Terrill and then donate it to the Boy Scouts.  Seconded by Ms. Flammia.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

Tools: Mr. Shelley purchased the tools as discussed in previous meetings. Mr. Peska moved to refund Mr. Shelley the $357.81 for purchase of tools for WCC.  Seconded by Ms. Flammia.  With all in favor, the motion was approved. They are currently being stored in Mr. Shelley’s garage until a locked box can be found for storage at the Town Garage.

Dairies: There was confusion from an article in the Keene Sentinel regarding the number of dairies in the state and the effects of the drought.  The Commissioner of Agriculture says that the question was asked two different ways and the wrong number was applied to the overall number of dairies in New Hampshire.  Walpole has 8 dairies which is the largest number for any town. “We do not have the largest number of cows but we do have the most dairy farms” per Mr. Beaudry.

Naming of the Falls: Per USGS, the proposed geographic name is “Great Falls”.  The WCC can approve the name, reject it or take action.  Mr. Peska moved to approve the name of the falls as “Great Falls” .  Seconded by Mr. Shelley.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

 

Next Meeting:  Because of the Federal holiday on January 2nd, the next meeting is scheduled for Monday, January 9, 2017 at 7:30 PM.

 

ADJOURNMENT: Mr. Peska moved to adjourn this meeting.  Ms. Flammia seconded.  With all members in favor, the meeting was adjourned at 8:40 PM.

 

Respectfully submitted,

Elaine Heleen, Acting Recording Secretary

(Note:  These are unapproved Minutes.  Any corrections will be found in the December 5, 2016, Conservation Commission meeting.)

Selectboard Meeting Minutes – 11/23/16

TOWN OF WALPOLE

MEETING OF THE SELECTBOARD

NOVEMBER 23, 2016

 

Selectboard Present:     Steven Dalessio (Chair); Peggy Pschirrer; Whitney Aldrich

CALL TO ORDER:  Mr. Dalessio called this Selectboard meeting to order at 6:30 PM in the Walpole Town Hall.  He advised that this meeting is being recorded and asked anyone wishing to speak to identify themselves for the record.  There were no visitors present.

 

PAYROLL:  Mrs. Pschirrer moved to accept the Payroll voucher for the week ending November 19, 2016, in the amount of $22,391.25 for checks dated November 25, 2016.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

Mrs. Pschirrer moved to accept the electronic fund transfer for the 941 Employer Taxes for Withholding, MEDI and FICA taxes in the amount of $4,263.97 for the week ending November 19, 2016.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

 

SELECTBOARD MEETING MINUTES:

SELECTBOARD MEETING – November 17, 2016:  Mrs. Pschirrer moved to accept the Minutes of the regular Selectboard meeting of November 17, 2016, as submitted.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the Minutes were approved.

 

NON-PUBLIC SELECTBOARD SESSION – November 17, 2016:  Mrs. Pschirrer moved to accept the Minutes of the Non-Public Selectboard Session of November 17, 2016, as submitted.  These Minutes will remain sealed.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the Minutes were approved.

 

COMMITTEE REPORTS:

The Selectboard received and reviewed Minutes of the following meetings:

  • Walpole Cemetery Trustees Meeting – November 12, 2016;
  • Walpole Zoning Board of Adjustment – November 16, 2016.

Mr. Dalessio noted there were a number of people who attended the Zoning Board of Adjustment meeting with Patricia Rodrigues and John Corduff residents of Westmoreland; non Walpole residents.

 

NOTICE OF INTENT TO CUT WOOD OR TIMBER:

PAUL GALLOWAY, Cochran Road, Map & Lot #006-017-000:  Mrs. Pschirrer moved to approve the Notice of Intent to Cut Wood or Timber for Paul Galloway, as submitted.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

 

OLD BUSINESS:

Wage Review:  There was a consensus of the Selectboard to schedule a Non-Public Session on Monday, December 12, 2016, at 8:30 AM in the Conference Room at the E.E. Houghton building to discuss (a) Personnel.  The MRI invoice for the Wage Review will be put-on-hold until after this meeting on December 12, 2016.

 

NEW BUSINESS:

Right-to-Know Request: A request was received from Ms. Rodrigues for a copy of the tape and minutes from the Selectboard meeting of November 17, 2016.  It was noted that the Recording Secretary’s minutes do not have to be available until 5 business days following the meeting.  Ms. Downing was asked to call Ms. Rodrigues on Monday, November 28, 2016 to let her know the copy of the recording and meeting minutes will be ready to be picked up on a specific day at the Selectboard office.

Recording Devices for Board Minutes:  The Selectboard will research the best way to archive meeting minutes going forward.

Town Hall Rentals re: Board Members and Elected Officials Mrs. Downing had a request to hold a date for a Town Hall rental for a wedding in September 2017.  The Selectboard agreed to hold the date for a while but if another request is received for the same date Mrs. Downing will call this official and ask if they will use the Town Hall or not.

Onsite Drug Testing:  The Selectboard discussed a proposal from a company to do onsite drug testing.  The Selectboard agreed they would only be interested in the onsite drug testing if this company will do testing for the pool and Hooper employees all at the same time rather than having them go to Keene.  Mrs. Downing will also ask for a quote.

 

RECESS SELECTBOARD MEETING:  Mr. Dalessio moved to recess this Selectboard meeting.  The Selectboard will enter into a meeting as the Hooper Trustees.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved at 6:58 PM.

The regular Selectboard meeting resumed at 7:05 PM.

 

NEW BUSINESS: 

NH Municipal ConferenceMr. Dalessio attended this conference.  It was mentioned there will be more State changes coming.

Warrant Articles: Mr. Dalessio pointed out that Warrant Articles add to the budget; might be 5-10% each year.  Voters need to look at the budgets for the County, Fire District and Schools.  The State education funding is going down.  There are many items the Selectboard cannot control.  They continued a conversation about the budget process and tax rates.  There is a need to talk about all this at the Annual Town Budget and Warrant Public Hearing.

 

ADJOURNMENT:

Mrs. Pschirrer moved to adjourn this meeting.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the meeting was adjourned at 7:24 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Regina Borden, Recording Secretary

Selectboard Meeting Minutes – 11/17/16

TOWN OF WALPOLE

MEETING OF THE SELECTBOARD

NOVEMBER 17, 2016

 

Selectboard Present:     Steven Dalessio; Peggy Pschirrer; Whitney Aldrich

CALL TO ORDER:  Mr. Dalessio called this Selectboard meeting to order at 6:30 PM in the Walpole Town Hall.  He advised that this meeting is being recorded and asked anyone wishing to speak to identify themselves for the record.  There were fifteen people in attendance.

 

PUBLIC BUSINESS:

WHIPPLE HILL – Gravel PitMr. Dalessio advised that the Selectboard invited Mr. Gary Patch, Cold River Materials, to give his perspective on the Whipple Hill, Gravel Pit, matter; what agreements are in place and what is the status of the property.  Mr. Patch said this property has been a resource enjoyed by many for generations.  Communities in the area had used it since Arthur Whitcomb owned it. It is a big unbroken block of wooded area between the Cold River property, LeClerc’s property and other abutters.  There are some accessible roads that run through the property.  It is used for hiking, biking, hunting, etc.  He has been in charge of the property for 20 years now. Presently he is plant manager of Cold River Materials and is responsible for this property.  Most of it was recently put into current use.

Recently a new neighbor, Mrs. Barbara Spivey, contacted the Walpole Police Department, Mr. Patch and the Walpole Selectboard about having problems with excessive shooting in the pit.  They rarely use the pit but still keep it active and permitted.  Mr. Patch asked Police Chief Paquette to have Mrs. Spivey call him.  Mr. Patch went down to the pit, he listened to her concerns and they talked about options.  He informed Mrs. Spivey that he had no intentions of posting all the property because it is a resource enjoyed by many people.  Mrs. Spivey told Mr. Patch that she was not against hunting but was against the shooting. He asked her to call him when there was excessive shooting and he would immediately come to the pit.  When he did an inspection during hunting season the shooting was not on Cold River property but rather LeClerc’s property.  Semi-automatic rifles were being used.  He then walked over to the pit and spoke to some people who were there.  He is trying to keep the peace with everybody as he understands Mrs. Spivey’s concerns.  He does not want a shooting range on this property.  There was some shooting in one of the two corn fields.  All of this excessive gun shooting may not be coming from this property.  Mr. Dalessio did inform the LeClerc’s about the shooting on their property and they were not aware of it but they will look into it.

Mr. Patch wondered why this went to the Selectboard meeting because the Town of Walpole has no governing power over what Cold River Materials does on their property.  Mr. Dalessio noted that this is correct but when there is a citizen complaint, the Selectboard likes to do their due diligence on it.  His concern was the combination of shooting and alcohol so they asked the police department to substantiate this. However, they have not observed a combination of both in that area.  Mr. Patch said in his 20 years as manager, he never had a complaint on shooting; maybe it has elevated.  Relative to alcohol, Mr. Patch has never seen a beer can in the pit.

Mr. McLaughlin said in his 25 years of living there, he has witnessed alcohol.  At the end of each hunting season, he goes around and picks up all the beer cans.  He thinks they can find a solution by working together.  There was a discussion relative to the type of rifles that are being shot there.

Mr. Anthony Frye said they are present at this meeting to find a solution.  It has been a family tradition to use the property for hunting.  Mr. Patch spoke to Mr. Ted Walski from the NH Department of Fish and Game about the rumors that Mrs. Spivey put a stop on the hunting of pheasants but she did not.  Fish and Game stopped stocking them because the pheasants are very expensive. Mrs. Spivey pointed out that they have nothing against hunters but are opposed to just shooting in the pit.  Mr. Dalessio noted that pheasant hunting is not an issue tonight and asked that the discussion cease.

Several people agreed that it was always a safe place to go ride a bike, shoot or use it for other recreational purposes.  Nobody wants to change that.  They never bothered anybody.  Mr. Dalessio summarized that this decision is up to the landowner.  The Town of Walpole does not have a specific noise ordinance.  Mr. Hewes clarified that the Police Department will respond if a property owner calls in but they cannot respond to third party callers.  Mr. Patch proposed to Mrs. Spivey that he would like to handle this himself.  If she has a situation, Mrs. Spivey should call him and he will immediately respond.  Mr. Dalessio felt the two landowners could work together to keep this under control.

Mr. Michael Beam advised that a landowner has put up a locked gate on the Old Stage Road.  Mr. Dalessio noted that the RSA is clear about locked gates on Class 6 roads.  They will take a look at it as they were not familiar with the gate.

 

PATRICIA RODRIGUES and JOHN CORDUFFMs. Rodrigues, a resident of Westmoreland, asked the Selectboard if they had received their copy of the letter she had sent to the Zoning Board of Adjustment (ZBA).  She then distributed a copy of that letter, dated November 16, 2016, and read it for the record.  She has looked through the Walpole Ordinances and rules regulating excavation.  For clarification Mr. Dalessio stated that the Town of Walpole ZBA or the Planning Board does not issue any permits for blasting.  Ms. Rodrigues was to have been notified of any blasting by either the Police Chief or Fire Chief at least 24 hours in advance as mandated by law and this did not happen.  Mr. Dalessio said the Chief then talked to the owners.  Ms. Rodrigues will be notified in the future.  At least for now, the blasting has been resolved.  The Alteration of Terrain Permit gives the right to blast.  The Town of Walpole has no enforcement officers. The Selectboard is not qualified to go down into the pit and say they are blasting more than they should. They rely on the DES (Department of Environmental Services) to do their inspections in accordance with their permits. This information has been given to the ZBA; this is in their prevue; they will have to answer those questions, not the Selectboard’s.

Mrs. Rodriguez referenced Section 12 of the zoning ordinance that states that “it shall be the duty of the Selectboard”.  Part II says that the Selectboard are the enforcers. Mr. Dalessio pointed out that the Selectboard will ask the Zoning Board of Adjustment (ZBA) to respond to this letter. If they find that this is all well-founded, correct, and if there is a violation, the Selectboard will take the necessary steps.  The experts in the Town of Walpole are the ZBA members. Ms. Pam Clark, a resident of Westmoreland, said this has been going on for over three years; it was presented to the ZBA and the Planning Board in this town.  Mrs. Pschirrer pointed out that it is the Westmoreland side that sets the hours of operation.  They have a letter from Westmoreland that sets standards for this operation. Ms. Rodrigues replied that lately it has been on the Walpole side. Mr. Dalessio explained that this first became their issue about two weeks ago when Ms. Rodrigues and Mr. Corduff came in about the hours of operation. The Selectboard did inquire and got a letter from Westmoreland.  This is the first list of concise things that he has seen. A letter of deficiency does not necessarily require action from the Town of Walpole. Mr. Dalessio noted that they have taken action to clarify the tax cards.  The rail trail cut is a state matter.  Mrs. Pschirrer summarized that they received a copy of the letter, they will read it to verify the information and then they will talk to the ZBA. They will then respond to Ms. Rodrigues. Mr. Dalessio pointed out that they have her letter and the ZBA also has Ms. Rodrigues’ letter.  The Selectboard will ask the ZBA to answer all the questions, do their homework and they will come up with answers. It all has to be verified and researched before they can answer any questions. It could take a month or two as the ZBA only meets once a month.

Ms. Rodrigues said she had previously asked for the hours of operation in Walpole.  Mr. Dalessio replied that they got the hours from the Town of Westmoreland for her and the Town of Walpole hours are the same as Westmoreland’s.  If there is a violation of hours, Ms. Rodrigues should call the Police Department. Mr. Dalessio asked Ms. Rodrigues to please call Mrs. Sarah Downing to ask to be put on future Selectboard agendas.

 

ACCOUNTS PAYABLE:

Mrs. Pschirrer moved to accept the Accounts Payable check register in the amount of $153,101.19 for checks dated November 18, 2016.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

(Note: This holds in abeyance the check to the Fall Mountain Regional School District until taxes come in.)

 

PAYROLL:

Mrs. Pschirrer moved to accept the Payroll voucher for the week ending November 12, 2016, in the amount of $22,280.59 for checks dated November 18, 2016.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

Mrs. Pschirrrer moved to accept the electronic fund transfer for the 941 Employer Taxes for Withholding, MEDI and FICA taxes in the amount of $4,680.90 for the week ending November 12, 2016.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

 

SELECTBOARD MEETING MINUTES:

SELECTBOARD MEETING – November 10, 2016:  Mrs. Pschirrer moved to accept the Minutes of the regular Selectboard meeting of November 10, 2016, with the following addition under Graves Gravel Pit: after “Mrs. Rodrigues” add “a Westmoreland, NH resident”.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the Minutes were approved.

 

COMMITTEE REPORTS:

The Selectboard received and reviewed Minutes of the following meetings:

  • Walpole Planning Board – November 9, 2016;
  • North Walpole Zoning Board of Adjustment – November 10, 2016.

 

VETERANS’ TAX CREDIT:

Mrs. Pschirrer moved to approve the Veterans’ Tax Credit for Map and Lot # 007-008-000.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

 

OLD BUSINESS:

ZBA Appointment RSA 673:12:  Mr. Dalessio advised that a change needed to be made to the October 27, 2016 motion under “Tom Murray – ZBA Appointment Notice” as follows:

Mrs. Pschirrer moved that the Stelectboard acknowledge the ZBA appointment of Thomas Murray as a regular member for a period of five months beginning November 16, 2016 through the 2017 Town Meeting.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

 

Wage Review:  Mr. Dalessio would like to wait another week before signing this report.

 

NEW BUSINESS:

Health Trust – Summary of Benefits and Coverage Agreement:  Mrs. Pschirrer moved to authorize the Chair, Mr. Steven Dalessio, to sign the Summary of Benefits and Coverage Agreement for the Health Trust.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

Avitar Tax Map Agreement:  Mrs. Pschirrer moved to approve that the Chair of the Selectboard, Mr. Steven Dalessio, sign the Avitar Tax Map Agreement document for three years.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

Highway Requests for 2016 Mrs. Pschirrer reported that Mr. Rau has enough money in the Maintenance Fund to build a shed that will be used to keep their yard in order and equipment under cover.

A bid came in from Mr. Barry Kilburn of Alstead for a shed at $8,200.  Payment will be made in mid-December.  The Highway Department has about $8,000 left in paving and they would like to spend it on gravel.  $10,000/year never gives them enough to do all the work.  Mr. Dalessio and Mr. Aldrich approved these requests.

Budget – Police Department Mr. Dalessio advised that when they built the budget they put in for a full time police officer.  He feels they can pull three months out of the full time officer line because they will not hire anyone until at least April 1st, 2017.

 

RECESS SELECTBOARD MEETING:

Mr. Dalessio moved to recess this Selectboard meeting.  The Selectboard will enter into a meeting as the Hooper Trustees.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved at 8:05 PM.

The regular Selectboard meeting resumed at 8:09 PM.

 

NON-PUBLIC SELECTBOARD SESSION:

Mrs. Pschirrer moved to enter into a Non-Public Selectboard Session pursuant to RSA 91-A:3 II to discuss (a) Personnel.  Mr. Aldrich seconded the motion and, on a roll call vote with all in favor, the motion was approved

Mrs. Pschirrer moved that the Minutes of the Non-Public Selectboard Session of November 17, 2016, be sealed.  Seconded by Mr. Aldrich.  With all in favor, the motion was approved.

 

ADJOURNMENT:

Mr. Aldrich moved to adjourn this meeting.  Seconded by Mrs. Pschirrer.   With all in favor, the meeting was adjourned at 8:20 PM.

 

Respectfully submitted,

Regina Borden, Recording Secretary

Walpole Staff Meeting – 11/17/16

TOWN OF WALPOLE

STAFF MEETING

NOVEMBER 17, 2016

 

Selectboard Present:     Steven Dalessio (Chair); Peggy Pschirrer; Whitney Aldrich

Staff Present:               Sarah Downing (Executive – Manager of Administration); Michael Rau (Road Agent); Police Chief Michael Paquette (Police Department); Paul Colburn (Recycling Center); Justine Rogers (Librarian); Justin Cassarino (Recreation Director); Rebecca Whippie (Hooper Institute)

Guest:  Cheryl Mayberry

 

Call to Order:  Mr. Dalessio called this staff meeting to order at 4:00 PM in the Walpole Town Hall.  He advised that this meeting is being recorded.

Highway Department Mr. Rau reported they have been cleaning out and marking culverts as this is done regularly. They were able to help clear-out the area that a few individuals in North Walpole are trying to make into a park.  It is nice to see them taking an interest in doing this.  He gave them some old granite blocks, seed and mulch.  Chief Paquette said the area looks good.  Mr. Dalessio asked Ms. Mayberry to mention this help to the North Walpole Commissioners. Some sidewalks in North Walpole were paved.  Mr. Rau was there helping and learning.  The Fuzzy Brothers did a nice job.  For the period October 21, 2016 to November 16, 2016, they also did the following work:

  • Cold patching;
  • Serviced trucks and equipment;
  • Cleaned catch basins;
  • Closed the fountain;
  • Paved Watkins Hill Road; Filled in driveways on Watkins Hill Road;
  • Fixed the thermostat on truck-10;
  • Ditch work was done on all dirt roads;
  • Crushed dumpsters for Recycling Center;
  • Mulched and picked-up leaves;
  • Fixed door rails on the chipper;
  • Fixed the step on the grader and made shield for hydraulic valves;
  • The DES paper work is done and was accepted by DES for the March Hill bridge. He is waiting for the DES inspection.
  • Cleaned the East Street dam – the beavers are still there. Rau talked to Mr. Speed about trapping them again and he will do it this month or in December.
  • Worked on loader specs and pricing;
  • Total miles paved this year was 8.3 – two more miles than last year;
  • Oil undercoated the trucks

Mrs. Pschirrer mentioned that people who drive over Watkins Hill Road and March Hill Road but live on other roads want their roads done as well.  Mr. Dalessio asked them to cold patch some of the potholes along the Alstead Center Road as he is concerned about the winter.  Big trucks are still going through there.  Mr. Rau said it is posted but sometimes they still go over that road.  Mr. Rau and Mr. Thompson went to an air brake training class and are now certified to work on them.  It was an after-hours class.  Mr. Dalessio advised that when someone takes their own time to attend a training class they should be given something out of the stipend line as recognition for doing this.  Mr. Rau hopes they will attend more classes next year.  Everything is going well.  They are ready for winter.  The Selectboard noted that two employees, Ken Silva and Ken Thompson, came in 4th out of 12 at the New England Regional Plowing Rally.

 

Selectboard Office Mrs. Downing made the following report:

Assessing Update:

  • Fall 2016 warrant was signed by the Selectboard and delivered to the Tax Collector’s Office.
  • A printed notice of the town-wide property evaluation project will be included in the tax bill envelopes. New Hampshire municipalities are required by RSA to conduct a revaluation every 5 years.
  • Assessors from Avitar Associates have begun visiting properties in North Walpole to measure buildings and other taxable features.
  • If no one is home, Avitar assessors will simply measure the exterior of all structures. If the owner is home and willing the assessor will do an interior inspection. After the initial visit, taxpayers will receive a letter with Avitar Associates’ contact information for arranging interior home inspections.
  • If property owners have questions or concerns, please call Selectboard Office for assistance.
  • Equalization assessment data is being reviewed by Avitar and is due to the state in mid-December in order to set the equalization rate for the Town.

Water and Sewer Billing:

  • Fall billing was posted Oct. 26th;
  • Over 58 payments have been hand-delivered to the Selectboard Office; this number does not include payments received through the mail.
  • Thanks to Linda Edkins, Bryan Wetherby and Alex Fafara for their efforts in gathering meter readings, importing data, double checking accounts, creating invoices and preparing invoices for mailing. Linda was pleased with how everything moved through the process.
  • Overall payment activity has been active which is keeping Linda busy with processing payments and deposits several times a week.

Department of Revenue Administration:

  • The NH Department of Revenue (DRA) auditors will be returning in December to finalize the audit of the Town’s Veterans’ Tax Credit files.
  • The Town Hall will be hosting site for a DRA sponsored workshop entitled “Current Use Criteria and Rules” on Tuesday, Nov. 29th from 9am to 1pm. Smith, Mrs. Pschirrer and Mrs. Downing will be attending this workshop.

Town Hall Facilities:

The following repairs occurred:

  • Replacement of stained and damaged ceiling tiles;
  • Handrail added to basement stairway;
  • Sprinkler repair of air leaks/pipes in system (2nd visit).

Town Hall Rentals and Reservations:

  • Researching simplified approach to main door lock, chair and table storage so it is safer and easier to do;
  • High use of Town Hall continues through the end of December.

Holiday Gift Cards:

  • Will be distributed via department managers to all regular full-time and part-time employees in mid-December. Mr. Dalessio mentioned that for those who are willing to give up their gift cards, Mrs. Janet Clough will accept them and give them to the Town’s welfare people.

Boston Post Cane:

Following this meeting the Boston Post Cane will be presented to Charmian Trundle in honor of being the oldest resident in Town.  There will be a reception with cake and light refreshments.

Recycling CenterMr. Paul Colburn made the following report for the month of October:

He referenced and explained the “Daily Weight Report and Year to Date Comparison”.  Mixed Paper is doing well as they are putting in milk cartons and getting a lot of books from the school.  Electronics are higher compared to other years.  They no longer take tubes because of the markets and no longer weigh glass.  They were down with cardboard but are now getting banana boxes from Mr. Gs.  These boxes are in demand as they are strong and used by many people.  The second report is the “Five Year Comparison on Recyclables”.  The Recycling Center charges for these items because they have to pay to dispose of them.  The year’s Forecast was $30,000; Estimated Year is $41,000.  Historically October is one of their better months.  Next month he will be short-handed therefore not able to make as many trips as usual.  The number of trips has a lot to do with commercial materials.  The furniture factory brought in about 15 mattresses which they broke down into box springs, wood, metal, etc.

Mr. Colburn started a fire wood program.  People can bring wood they do not need into the Center and people who need it can come in to pick it up.  Mr. Ben Daviss and Mr. Jackson brought in the first loads. There is a need for this service but Mr. Colburn is not sure how much wood will be brought in.

Ms. Heather Collins is up-dating their website.  Last week the Alstead School came in with 47 students and chaperones.  They were broken up into three groups.  One sorted materials that came in from the school program, another took off the book binders and the other group was given a tour.  They then switched so each group spent some time doing each of the tasks.  It worked out well.  They took pictures that will be put on the website and maybe put in the Town Report.  The teacher said when the students got off the bus they asked when they could come back again.

LaValley’s is bringing in a few loads of metal.  It will increase revenue.  They are looking to change the lights in the Center over to LEDs but will stay within their budget.  Mr. Dalessio advised the Selectboard would like to not have discretionary spending that has to be paid before mid-December.  They have to pay the County and make a monthly payment to the Fall Mountain Regional School District.  After tax payments come in they will be back on-line.  Right now they are watching cash management.  Mr. Colburn is missing the roll-off they use for metals; they expect it will be returned soon.  Whitcomb Construction has agreed to take care of the beavers on the tree line.

 

Recreation Department Mr. Justin Cassarino provided the following report:

Pool:

  • Pool cover was delivered and put on. New holes were drilled in some spots to fit the new cover.
  • Can we dispose of the two old covers to free up space for the Highway Department? Mr. Rau said they were there when he started. Dalessio recommended he get approval from the Recreation Committee to dispose of them.
  • Water was shut off after the Tennis Club was to hold their tournament. However, it ended up raining, so they had to cancel the tournament.

Basketball:

  • 44 participants;
  • Not enough girls signed up for the 5/6 team, so one is playing at Alstead, one is on the 5/6 boy’s team, and one decided not to play;
  • Looking into new uniforms. The ones that were ordered four years ago are way too big. Need to get youth sizes.

Tennis:

  • Looking into getting new wind screens from Wilson and Lawrence for the tennis courts. They have a certain material that they are trying to get rid of so they are going to give us a deal on them.

Soccer:

  • Will be taking down the goals this weekend. Trying to get rid of the old goals to families who are interested.

 

LibraryMs. Justine Rogers submitted the following report:

Walpole October 2015: 27 Days open, 1321 people, 1778 circ, 29 programs, 228 people for programs.

2015 January to October Averaged 47 people and 78 circ per day.

Walpole October 2016: 25 Days open, 1732 people, 2144 circ, 37 programs, 357 people for programs, 461 website visitors.

2016 January to October Average 64 people and 91 circ per day.

Working on a speaker series for 2017.  There is a grant they are working on through the New Hampshire Humanities that non-profits can apply for.

Food for Fines 21st-23rd.  Bring in non-perishables.  1 food item = up to $1 of late fines waived.  It was very successful and a lot of lost items were brought back.

New volunteer opportunity they are trying to get off the ground: delivering books to home bound patrons.  They will be putting an article in the Clarion and on the Walpolean to hopefully get some volunteers interested.  They will do a meeting for the volunteers in January to get some planning done.

Automating North Walpole has been stalled a bit by the State Library.  New timeline is to have it done by March 2017.   They are the first in the State trying to automate their branch library.

Friends of the Library Book Sale was awesome as they made about $6,600.  At the end of the Book Sale they have a truck pick up the books that do not sell.  This year they had more books than would fit into the truck.  Other volunteers offered to take those books.  Mr. Dalessio pointed out that there is no carry-over of books yet they always have thousands to sell.  Ms. Rogers mentioned that Pam Howard’s family and friends made donations to the Friends of the Library.  The gifts came in just under $4,000.  The family asked to have a bench put in out front of the Library with a small plaque. Ms. Rogers will let the Library Board know the Selctboard approved this request.

 

Hooper InstituteMs. Rebecca (Becky) Whippie provided the following report for the period of October 20 to November 17, 2016:

Eloise Clark:  The 5th grade has been working on Soils Unit.  The 6th grade has been working on the Forestry Unit.  During “flex” time, mid-day students have volunteered as an elective to help out with the harvest at the WES garden with Eloise.  They harvested 104 pounds of butternut squash and donated that to the Food Shelf.  Out of a total of 240-250 pounds of butternut squash about 150 pounds has or will be used in the WES lunch program.  Also a 5 pound bucket of Brussel sprouts were picked and have already been eaten in the lunch program in just one day.  They also have been closing up the gardens.

Becky Whippie:  Pre-Kindergarten – In the last month they talked about earthworms, pumpkin parts, mammal definition.  They have been doing an activity called “Red squirrel vs grey squirrel” and studying Ladybug life cycles.

Kindergarten – They have been studying Pumpkin Science – weighing, measuring, record and drawing what they have picked in the WPS garden.  Garden closing activities are being done.  Cranberry botany – made cranberry sauce and tasted it.

First Grade – Compost review, adding greens, browns and manure to the mix.  One afternoon they did seed saving of garlic, chives and zinnias.  They packaged their dried chives for gifts to go home. They cleaned the popcorn bed and got it ready for the spring.  Today they peeled and mashed their garden potatoes harvested earlier this fall and ate them.

Second Grade – Cleared and added green materials to corn and green bean beds in the garden to add nutrients to the soil for next spring. Soil sort: Looked for organisms.  Looked for sand, silt, clay and gravel and organic/biotic matter.

Third Grade – Tree I.D. challenge used I.D. booklets they made to identify numbered trees in NWS garden; 10 varieties.  Some looked to see what they had in their own yards.  Harvested and grated carrots, made two carrot cakes together, baked them and tasted the cakes the next day.

Fourth Grade – Visited Walpole Valley Farm with 4-D and Brookfield Farm with 4-M students.  Mulched two garden beds. Talked about squash uses, identified different sorts of winter keepers vs summer squash.

 

Police DepartmentPolice Chief Michael Paquette submitted a chart for the period of October 16, 2016 through November 15, 2016.  There were 413 calls for service.  They are broken down as follows:

  • Public Safety Calls:

Emergency Calls – 35              Administrative – 45                 Citizen Assists – 67

  • Motor Vehicle Calls:

Accidents – 17                                     MV Stops – 138                       Traffic Safety – 41

  • Criminal Investigations:

Drugs/Alcohol – 18     Crimes Against a Person – 25  Crimes Against Property – 17

 

Chief Paquette talked about the on-going drug activity in the area.  Handling cases is very time consuming; they take 80-to-90% of their time.  With DARE Programs and police presence they hope it will help educate the youth.  Mrs. Pschirrer recommended they talk about having a program with parents to do some drug education.  The Police Department acquired the DUI Grant.  As a result the motor vehicle stops number is up.  This will give them quite a bit of money from the State as the result of collecting fines.  The County was awarded a Drug Addiction Grant for over $30,000.  It is for all full time departments doing surveillance work except for Keene who received a separate grant; it will start in December.  They can add about 150 additional calls for service but for brief, minor issues.  The Cub Scouts visited the Police Station and the Girl Scouts will be coming; the children really enjoy this.  They sit in the cruisers and get to know the officers are approachable; do not be afraid of them.  They had the “Drug Take Back”; many people came to the station to drop off their drugs. The front lobby now has fortified glass; a section of the roof was done.  Mr. Rau has been helpful with doing some work. Mr. Colburn has helped with the Diversion Program.  Chief Paquette has been talking with Mr. Sam Jacobs at the Middle School.  He would like to be able to sit down with a small group of students and have lunch with them. This would be in all the schools including Charlestown and Alstead; some of their own officers would participate.  The DARE Program was cancelled for the winter but there might be another one in March.  The Police Departments from the five towns are assisting the schools while their resource officer is out.  Students are aware of the officers’ presence in the schools.

 

Mr. Dalessio advised that everyone is doing a great job.  Let’s keep up the good work!

Adjournment:  Mr. Dalessio adjourned this Staff Meeting at 5:08 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Regina Borden, Recording Secretary

 

BF 5K Winter Classic – 12/17/16

5k-logoCody Tallent, a senior at Bellows Falls Union High School, is an accomplished distance runner and a staff member at Meeting Waters YMCA’s Y Day Camp and Y-ASPIRE afterschool program. He’s bringing all of these characteristics together to organize a 5K run and walk to benefit the regional Y’s Reach Out to Youth Scholarship Fund. The Bellows Falls 5K Winter Classic will be held at 10AM on Saturday, December 17th. It starts and finishes at the Rockingham Recreation Center on Playground Road.

“I’m doing this to finish my Senior Project. I wanted to do a road race because I love running,” Tallent states. “I wanted Meeting Waters YMCA to be the beneficiary of the event because I have seen first-hand how the Y has benefited kids and I know the money will help kids and families in our community.”

According to the race organizer, the 5K route will consist of two laps of a 2.5 kilometer circuit (about a mile-and-a-half). “Hopefully, this will encourage families to come and do the event together. Children could stop after one lap while the parents continue on,” Tallent adds. “Like the Y does every day, I’m hoping this event promotes healthy lifestyles and there’s no better way to do that than to get a whole family involved.”

More information about the BF 5K Winter Classic—as well as a Registration Form—are available at Meeting Waters YMCA’s website (www.meetingwatersymca.org). Registration is now open. One may register the morning of the event, as well. Questions can be directed to Meeting Waters YMCA’s administrative office at 802-463-4769 or by writing info@meetingwatersymca.org.

Founded 121 years ago, Meeting Waters YMCA is a non-profit, charitable social service agency “strengthening the foundations of community” in the Bellows Falls, Fall Mountain, Springfield and Brattleboro regions.

Chalice Week at Unitarian Church

Family First at the Walpole Unitarian Church Celebrates the Flaming Chalice with Brunch

Sunday’s here! And after a hectic start to the holiday season, why not an easy Sunday morning? Just roll yourselves out of bed and plan to come at 10 a.m. and just enjoy brunch and each other’s company. No cooking! You have enough ahead of you this month!

Breakfast is provided for a hassle-free time for adults and the entire family to interact with other families (of all sizes), and talk with members of the congregation about values and spiritual dimensions in our lives.

Our topic for December is Chalice Week, which is seven days of contemplation and action celebrating our seven Unitarian-Universalist principles.

Those principles: We embrace and promote the inherent worth and dignity of every person; justice, equity, and compassion in human relations; acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations; a free and responsible search for truth and meaning; the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society; the goal of word community with peace, liberty, and justice for all; and, respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.

We have a special activity planned for the children, a chalice to enjoy at home, and materials for everyone!

Planning Board Workshop – 11/22/16

Walpole Planning Board

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Workshop Meeting

7:00 pm


Present:  Chair Jeff Miller, Vice-Chair Robert Miller, Secretary James Aldrich, Jason Perron, Dennis Marcom, Jeff White. Alternate: Joanna Andros.

Absent: Steve Dalessio. Alternate: Edward Potter.

 

The discussion focused on the outcome of November’s Public Hearing on the Petition about Detached Accessory Housing Units to be presented to warrant at the annual 2017 Town Meeting. These were the items about which residents had the most concern. Here is what the Board decided.
Mr. Dalessio would add something at the beginning of the petition about Attached Accessory dwellings.

The word minimum should be written out.

The Board decided a one-acre lot was not large enough. Instead, the Board decided to double the size of the lot for each of the Zoning Districts.

A. No change in frontage or setbacks shall be required for a DADU, however, the minimum lot size for any given Zoning District shall be the following:

1.) Residential District Type A – minimum lot area shall be 80,000 square feet:
2. Residential District Type B – minimum lot area shall be 50,000 square feet.
3.) Rural/Agricultural  – minimum lot area shall be 80,000 square feet
4.)Timberland – not permitted

A provision E. was added to No. 1.

E. Occupancy will be limited to two (2) unrelated individuals..

Add “Not to exceed one year” to the final No. 8 stipulation.

Mr J. Miller didn’t think there should be anything added about snowbirds. He felt the description of the rules for a resident  (A resident is a resident if he’s a registered voter etc.) covered a person being away from his/her residence for a period of time.

The petition must be posted in two places by December 2.  There will be another Public Hearing on the Petition on Tuesday, December 12, 2016 for further discussion of the language of the petition. If there is no significant change, it will be placed on the warrant as written and with the above changes.

 

Southwest Regional Planning Commission

 Mari Brunner of the SRPC came to start a monthly discussion about the streets of Walpole and analyze their uses and how they might be changed or be improved. Considerations include flexibility, costs, maintenance, implementation steps and performance measures. Residents who are interested in this project may join in the monthly discussions, which begin Tuesday, January 24, 2017, in the basement conference room in the Town Hall.