Town of East Hampton
Town Council Regular Meeting
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Eaton E. Smith Meeting Room – Town Hall
Present: Chairperson Melissa Engel, Vice Chairman John Tuttle and Council members Thomas Cordeiro, Christopher Goff, Barbara Moore and Susan Weintraub. ~Also present were Town Manager Jeffery O’Keefe, Recording Secretary Cathy Sirois, members of the press and citizens.
Not Present: William Devine
Call to Order and Pledge of Allegiance: ~Chairperson Engel called the regular meeting to order at 6:48 p.m. ~
Approval of Minutes:
A motion was made by Mr. Cordeiro, seconded by Mr. Tuttle, to approve the minutes of the Town Council Executive Session of April 27, 2010. Voted (6-0).
A motion was made by Ms. Moore, seconded by Mr. Goff, to approve the minutes of the Town Council Public Hearing of April 27, 2010. Voted (6-0).
A motion was made by Mr. Tuttle, seconded by Mr. Cordeiro, to approve the minutes of the Town Council Regular Meeting of April 27, 2010. Voted (6-0).
A motion was made by Ms. Moore, seconded by Mr. Cordeiro, to approve the minutes of the Town Council Executive Session of April 30, 2010. Voted (5-0-1). Ms. Weintraub abstained. Ms. Weintraub expressed concern on a consensus of members taken during the Executive Session. She did not agree with the consensus and thought that all members must agree for there to be consensus.
A motion was made by Mr. Goff, seconded by Mr. Tuttle, to add a proclamation to the agenda under item 9B. Voted (6-0).
Student Council Reports: None
Special Presentations: Run to Home Base 9K – Christopher Goff introduced Donna Kirk who provided information on a fundraising event that her son, Neal Kirk, is participating in for veterans who return from service with combat stress disorders and/or traumatic brain injuries. The Run to Home Base 9K will take place in Boston on May 23rd with the end of the race crossing home plate at Fenway Park.
Laurie Wasilewski, Hog Hill Road, commented on the efforts of the Public Relations Sub Committee for the budget referendum. She remains disappointed on the information sent home with the school children on the budget. She feels the ad in the Rivereast on the budget was misleading. She would like to be included in the Public Relations group next year.
Mary Ann Dostaler, 56 William Drive, commented that she feels the Arts & Cultural Commission would be beneficial to the town. She questioned the fiscal impact noted on the agenda report. She asked if the Commission would have a budget. She also asked for the costs for the carpet and painting done in Town Hall.
Julie Ciucias, Viola Drive, commented on the high noise level at Angelico’s over the weekend.
Monica Kangley, 27 Bellwood Court, commented that she supports the Arts & Cultural Commission and is happy to help with it.
Scott Minnick, 28 South Main Street, commented that the Arts & Cultural Commission is a good idea and noted that an ordinance was reviewed back in 2006. He also expressed his concern related to the way he was treated after applying for a position on the Parks & Recreation Advisory Board.
Consider Formation and Ordinance Establishing an Arts & Cultural Commission:
Mr. Cordeiro provided an overview of the proposed ordinance establishing an Arts & Cultural Commission. He would like to form a sub-committee to assist in preparing the ordinance. At the next Council meeting, Mr. Cordeiro will provide a list of members for the sub-committee who will prepare the ordinance and a budget for the Commission.
Legal Bill Reviews:
A motion was made by Mr. Cordeiro, seconded by Mr. Goff, to adopt a policy requiring the Town Manager to meet with council members in executive session on a monthly basis to review all pending claims and legal bills. Voted (6-0).
Adopt Charter Revision Commission Final Report:
Following the Public Hearing on the Charter Revision, the Council discussed the recommended changes.
The Council had no issues with a majority of the recommended changes. The following were topics for discussion:
Town Manager Performance Evaluation: Why is the date for the performance evaluation for the Town Manager December 31st as opposed to June 30th, the end of the fiscal year.
4 Year Staggered Terms: Ms. Moore and Ms. Weintraub feel the terms for Council members should remain 2 years rather than the 4 year staggered terms.
Residency Requirements: Ms. Weintraub feels there should be a residency requirement for the Town Manager, noting that individual needs to be a part of the community.
Voting: There was a question regarding US citizenship requirements for voting at Town Meetings.
There was discussion as to how the recommended changes to the Charter will be voted on – either one question or individual questions for each change.
Ms. Weintraub noted her concern regarding the composition of the commission that no more than 1/3 of the members can be elected officials. Mr. O’Keefe stated that 1/3 of 5 commission members is 1.6666 which translates to 2 members. This was the legal interpretation from the Town Attorney.
At the next meeting the Council will vote to adopt the recommended changes, will schedule the vote to take place during the general election in November and the question(s) will be adopted.
Revisit the Plan of Conservation & Development Implementation Table:
Mr. O’Keefe provided an updated Implementation Table from the Plan of Conservation & Development. The Council will review the amended document and discuss it at the next Council meeting.
Discuss Social Media Policy:
Mr. O’Keefe reviewed a draft of a Social Media policy. If approved, the policy will be included in the Employee Handbook that is being developed.
A motion was made by Ms. Moore, seconded by Mr. Cordeiro, to adopt the Social Media policy as presented. Motion rescinded.
Ms. Weintraub commented that the town might consider having a Human Resource consultant review the employee handbook and the social media policy. She thought the department heads should review the document as well. Mr. O’Keefe will ask the department heads for their input prior to the next meeting. The item will be placed on the May 25th agenda.
Report of the Town Manager: ~~
Mr. O’Keefe reported on the following:
- CL&P has notified the town that they will not be renewing the lease for the Town Hall Annex after it expires in October. He is looking at other options for the Food Bank, Probate and the departments that are housed in that building.
- He and Jeff Jylkka will be attending a meeting with other town officials on Friday regarding a large assessment by MIRMA.
- He provided copies of the legal bill and a copy of the schedule from the Senior Executive Institute seminar that he attended.
- The Royal Oaks improvements are in process and are going good and should be signed off at the end of the week.
- East Hampton is #1 on the list of the Water State Revolving (DWSRF) Fund. Last year the town was #36.
- Angelico’s band shell is almost complete. Ms. Weintraub voiced a concern that the State Building Department was contacted and they stated that Mr. Angelico should have been required to have a permit for the building of the band shell. She also had questions on the permitted use memo that she received from Jim Carey. Mr. O’Keefe will have Mr. Carey attend the May 25th meeting to answer questions on this subject.
Ms. Weintraub asked about the Barton Hill sewer issues. Mr. O’Keefe noted that he and the residents will be attending the June 4th WPCA meeting.
Proclamations were signed for National Safe Boating Week and for the East Hampton Volunteer Ambulance Association.
Bids and Contracts: ~
Lowell Road Reconstruction Project:
A motion was made by Ms. Moore, seconded by Mr. Tuttle, to award the contract for Lowell Road Reconstruction to the lowest qualified bidder, CAS Construction Company, in the amount of $44,240. Voted (6-0).
Sound System Upgrades for High School:
A motion was made by Mr. Goff, seconded by Ms. Moore, to award the contract for Sound System Upgrades for the High School to the lowest qualified bidder, Salafia Electric, LLC, in the amount of $20,657. Voted (6-0).
Financial Statements and Transactions: ~ None
A motion was made by Mr. Goff, seconded by Ms. Moore, to approve tax refunds in the amount of $441.23. Voted (6-0).
Communications, Correspondence & Announcements:
A packet of communications was provided to the Council members.
Ms. Weintraub provided a copy of a communication that was sent home with school children from the Superintendent regarding the budget. A letter will be prepared from the Council to the Board of Education chairman regarding this communication.
Laurie Wasilewski, Hog Hill Road, commented on the Executive Session held by Town Council on April 30, 2010. She noted that as soon as the allegations can be dispelled or clarified the better it will be for everyone.
Kyle Dostaler, 56 William Drive, commented that he attended the Senior Center Building Committee Meeting. He understood that the town will be losing public meeting space in the existing Senior Center due to the expansion and the grant restrictions. He asked if the groups that currently use the meeting room there have been notified.
Mr. Goff reported that the Ambulance Association has offered meeting room space if needed.
A motion was made by Mr. Goff, seconded by Mr. Tuttle, to adjourn the meeting at 8:35 p.m.