Broadband Committee Meeting Minutes – 1/8/20

Present: Paul Looney, Chair; Dick Hill, Rod Bouchard, Bob Anderson, Steve Grenier, Peggy Pschirrer.  Absent: Dennis Marcom

 

Paul Looney called the meeting to order at 4:00 pm in Walpole Town Hall.

 

Dick Hill moved the minutes of December 18, 2019 and January 6, 2020 be approved as presented. The motion was seconded and so voted.

 

The purpose of this meeting was to talk with Renelle LHuillier, Bond Counsel.

 

The details and the wording of the Bond Warrant Article were discussed: Renelle made it clear that we must include the cost of the whole project, which is three million, two hundred eighteen thousand, five hundred sixty-two dollars ($ 3,218,562.00). The amount of the bond will be one million, eight hundred fifty-six thousand, one hundred dollars ($1,856,100.00).  Peggy asked that the sum of the total applicable to Consolidated Communications also be included in the bond warrant. That sum is one million, three hundred sixty-three thousand, four hundred sixty-two dollars ($1,363,462.00). Renelle agreed it could be included. She will send a draft of the corrected warrant article.

 

The Committee reviewed the items we must gather to send to the Bond Counsel for our application to the Bonding Authority.

 

1. A Town Charter – which we have been unable to find in Town Hall Records or at the Historical Society.  Renelle will have her office check the State Archives /State Library.  

 

2. Public Hearings for the purpose of discussing Public Benefits. One public hearing has already been held; a second is scheduled for January 11, called by the Selectboard; another is scheduled by the Selectboard for February 12. The Bond hearing will be held February 13 at 4:00 pm in Town Hall.

 

3. The forms from the School, the Treasurer, the Finance Director etc. are not needed untilafter the Town vote.

 

4. The Contract with CCI was reviewed. Renelle indicated she is meeting with the Bond Bank attorney, Rick Manley, January 13 to discuss IRS regulations or concerns about payments on the bond. Is service issue on bond an issue?  What rules are there under management contracts?  Are these taxable or non-taxable. Rob Koester is interested in getting what the Town wants.

 

5. There were questions about the fact that only one vendor responded to our requests for RFI.  We know other vendors are in town.  Do we have to take Comcast into account when we consider who is served? We are happy to just use CCI. We do not want to make up numbers for Comcast or any other vendor.

 

6. We would like the amortization schedule from Tami at the Bond Bank.  
7. February 13 will be our Bond Bank hearing just prior to the Town Budget meeting.    Town Meeting is March 14, 2020 at 1 pm.

 

There is still concern as to whether the bonds will be taxable or non-taxable.

 

The Backbone of the fiber optic network will be owned by the Town; the fees from the user will be used to pay for the bond.

 

After the call was concluded with Renelle, the committee reviewed and adjusted the power point presentation for Saturday’s meeting at 10 am in Town Hall.  Mr. Koester is bringing is own slides and equipment.  We will have the room set up and our sound system will be available.

 

 

Peggy Pschirrer

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