Select Board Meeting 11/9/15


Select board (SB) meetings are recorded by LPC-TV and are available at their website and on Comcast Television.  Written minutes are available at the town’s website.  The following was discussed at Monday night’s meeting

A. Snowmobile Trail Approval: The Cavendish Green Mountain Snow Fleas requested the SB’s permission to cross the following plowed roads: Birmingham; Brook, Carlton, Chaos Turnpike, Ina Butler, Knapp Pond, Meadow Brook Farm, Moriglioni, Old Bailey Hill, Perley Brown, Prior, State Forest Highway, Tarbell Hill, Tierney, Twenty Mile Stream, Whitesville and Winery. These roads were approved, along with the limited use on Mill Street by one family. Three people were present to discuss their concerns about Quarry Rd in Proctorsville. It is hoped that a change in grooming practices will eliminate snowmobilers ending up on private land and disturbing residents at 1 am. It is important to note that Vermont has no statewide curfew on trails but does have a speed limit of 35 MPH.

B. Historic Preservation Project: The following Cavendish landmarks are slated for major preservation activities to continue and/or start Spring of 2016: Stone Church (Belfry, Cupola, Painting and Roof); Museum (Painting, repointing of bricks, door replacement); Civil War Memorial (cleaning); Cemeteries (Cleaning of grave stones, building a stone wall for Twenty Mile Stream Cemetery).

C. Cavendish Telecommunications Committee Update: The Internet Speed Test survey has been completed, showing speeds well below state and federal standards. Before the state’s Division of Telecommunications and Connectivity saw the final results they had concurred, based on previous meetings, that Cavendish is underserved for Internet, and because of the town’s interest in correcting the situation, we are a good candidate for a pilot project and eligibility for state funds. The board was also informed about TDS’s intent to build a 10G “Ring” to serve as the “backbone” for the TDS system. This will primarily benefit the 350 customers being served by the Proctorsville Central Office but could benefit those along the “spur” lines (e.g. Twenty Mile Stream, Chubb Hill etc.). Download the Committee’s Report to the Select Board in PDF format.

D. Transfer Station

E-Waste: Due to dropping prices for E-waste, NCER (National Center for Electronics, Recycling),  the contractor who handles Vermont’s E-Cycles program has amended their contract whereby they will no longer be reimbursing 5¢ per pound for e-waste as of Oct. 1 but will remove it for free.  This change is a direct result of a significant drop in the commodity price of glass, plastic, metals and circuit boards.  The town has signed a new contract to that effect to avoid E-waste ending up in landfills or other inappropriate areas. Weathersfield was dropped as a place to discard E-waste. According to state law, residents have the ability to discard E-waste at other transfer stations, which means that Cavendish’s E-waste could actually increase in the coming months.

Metal: The town has recently learned that it must now provide a written letter to the metal hauler that the current load does not contain mercury. This means that old appliances, and thermostats, bilge pumps and other items can no longer be dumped directly into the metal container without being evaluated for mercury content. All mercury will be removed before it is placed in the metal bin. This may require the transfer station to hire additional personnel who are trained in the removal and safe discard of mercury. Please cooperate with the attendants in this regard because if mercury is found, the load will be rejected and returned to the town at our expense. Further, it could result in the hauler refusing to take scrap metal. 

The reimbursement for metal is significantly down-see article Scrap Metal Prices Plummet in Vermont. Add to that no reimbursement for E-waste and the potential need to add another transfer attendant to deal with the mercury issue, it is not clear how the transfer station can break even, which is what the state wants to see, without significantly increasing tipping fees.

E. Cavendish Cemetery Regulations: Sexton Bruce McEnaney provided the board with draft regulations for the Cavendish cemeteries, which have not been updated or revised since the 1980s. It is going to take several meetings before the document can be adopted as changes are being discussed page by page. Among the changes are the addition of Perpetual Care Fund fees for all internments and lots, as well as costs for burials, with a price differentiation between weekday and weekend/holiday internments. In order to save “green” space, it will now be possible to inter three cremations on top of an existing burial plot. This discussion will continue at the December meeting.

F. Flood Hazard Regulations: Presented to the Board at the Oct SB meeting by the Planning Commission, the board voted to meet at a separate dedicated meeting to review for adoption.

G. Other Town Issues

Late Season Paving: Within the next two weeks, the following areas will have late season paving-bottom ofBonts Hill , High St by the Town Office, and a patch at the Transfer Station

Animal Control Officers: Will now have badges and be able to write municipal tickets for those in violation of the dog ordinance

Water/Wastewater Assistant Operator: Interviews are underway with four viable candidates

Cavendish Gulf Rd Construction: While the Gulf Road was open this weekend; it is currently closed while the culvert repair is being completed. This is on the Chester side. It is hoped that the road will be permanently reopened by mid November.

Proctorsville Depot St Bridge: The town is still awaiting the report about the safety of the bridge for the winter season to determine if and when the bridge may need to be closed.