Board of Selectmen
July 19, 2004
Present: Selectmen Linda Burt, Chairman, Kenelm Collins, Russell Sandblom, Joyce Brookshire, Peter Whitlock and Town Administrator Sheila Vanderhoef. Susan Rohrback, Legislative Aide to Senator Robert O’Leary, was present. There were five others in the audience.
The meeting was called to order by Chairman Burt at 7:00 p.m.
Legislative Aide Susan Rohrback extended greetings from Senator Robert O’Leary. She noted the Senator is most excited about the new legislation which allows Cape towns currently participating in the Land Bank to elect to participate in the Community Preservation Act. It will require a Town Meeting vote and placement on the next regular election ballot. Money from the CPA can be used for land, historic preservation and affordable housing.
Selectman Sandblom asked Ms. Rohrback to extend his personal thanks to Senator O’Leary for his early and consistent support of the Eastham Ocean Beach.
Town Administrator Vanderhoef announced that the Town of Eastham, as lead community for several surrounding towns, has been awarded a $1.2 million DHCH housing rehab grant.
7:08 p.m. Interview/Appointment Waste Water Management Planning Committee - Selectman Collins moved, Peter Whitlock seconded, to appoint Meint Olthof to the Waste Water Management Planning Committee for a three year term to end 6/30/07. Voted 5 - 0
7:13 p.m. Compensation and Benefits Elementary School Committee - David Sheptyck, Chairman of the Eastham Elementary School Committee, presented the Committee’s reaction to the recent action taken by the Board in which they notified the School Committee that they are not compensated elected officials and, therefore, are not eligible for health insurance benefits. Mr. Sheptyck asked the Board to rescind its vote. He also commented that members of the School Committee should have been present when it was discussed.
The Board’s position is that School Committee members receive a stipend, which is meant as reimbursement for expenses, not compensation for services rendered. It was noted that no income taxes are taken out of the payments as would be the case if they were considered compensation.
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Mr. Sheptyck’s position is that it doesn’t matter if you call it a stipend or compensation, the townspeople have voted for it as a line item in the school budget for years, he believes, as “compensation.” Selectman collins noted that in order to be considered a compensated elected official your position would have to be included in the Annual Town Meeting Article which sets the amount of compensation for elected officials each year. School Committee members are not included in the article.
Selectman Brookshire noted that when she served on the School Committee she received a stipend which was understood to be reimbursement for expenses. She said no taxes were taken out and it was not considered compensation. Selectman Brookshire went on to say that she thinks it is wrong to allow benefits for School Committee members. She suggested the School Committee go to Town Meeting with the matter “so that voters will know.”
Mr. Sheptyck said that they aren’t asking for anything new. Selectman Sandblom asked whether now is the time to do this in mid-stream? Selectman Whitlock noted it is an issue of procedure and he would not be opposed to revisiting the matter.
Selectman Whitlock said that it was good we were having this discussion with the School Committee. To summarize:
The School Committee members are not compensated elected officials. They are not included in the Article which sets compensation for elected officials.
Stipends are not compensation.
The Board of Selectmen decides which compensated elected officials are eligible for benefits.
Discussion ended with a consensus that to change anything the matter needs to be voted at Town Meeting.
Modification of Charge - Board of Highway Surveyors (7:47 p.m.) Selectman Brookshire moved, Russell Sandblom seconded, to eliminate language about Cemetery Commissioners, Tree Wardens, Park Commissioners, and moth superintendents from the charge to the Board of Highway Surveyors and Public Works. Approved 5 - 0
Approval of Transient Vendors’ Licenses for Windmill Weekend Craft Show and Sale - September 11, 2004 (7:48 p.m.) Selectman Collins moved, Peter Whitlock seconded, to approve
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the Transient Vendors’ Licenses for Windmill Weekend as per the list submitted.
Approved 5 - 0
Approval of Transient Vendors’ Licenses for Antique Show and Sale - August 12, 2004
(7:49 p.m.) Selectman Collins moved, Peter Whitlock seconded to approve the Transient Vendors’ Licenses for the Antique Show and Sale as per the list submitted. Approved 5 - 0
NPS Hunting Public Meeting Sponsored by Board of Selectmen The Board decided on the date of Tuesday, July 27th at 6:30 p.m. at Town Hall to co-sponsor a meeting with the National Park Service on the subject of hunting within the Park.
Bottle Redemption Requirement Changes (7:52 p.m.) Mark Powers, Recreation and Beach Director, told the Board that redemption centers do not want to deal with commercial accounts anymore. The recycling of glass deposit bottles provides a significant amount of revenue to the Beach Department in the summer and the Elementary School in the Winter. We have recently received a letter from Parker’s Liquors, who currently pick up our returnable cans and bottles instituting a new, very labor-intensive system for glass, requiring that the bottles be separated by brand. These onerous requirements cannot be met by the Town.
Legislative Aide to Senator O’Leary, Susan Rohrback noted that she would bring the Town’s concerns to the Senator’s attention so that he may investigate to what extent recent discussions in the Legislature re redemption changes may be affecting the market.
The Board will write to both Senator O’Leary and Representative Shirley Gomes about our concerns.
Selectman Collins moved, Peter Whitlock seconded to approve the minutes of the May 17, 2004 Regular Session as presented. Voted 3 - 0 - 2 with Selectmen Brookshire and Sandblom abstaining. Ms. Brookshire was on vacation on that date and Mr. Sandblom was not yet a Selectman.
Selectman Whitlock moved, Russell Sandblom seconded, to approve the minutes of the June 9, 2004 Work Session as presented. Approved 5 - 0
Selectman Brookshire moved, Peter Whitlock seconded, to approve the minutes of the June 30, 2004 Executive Session as presented. Approved 5 - 0
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A letter of resignation from the Zoning Board Appeals has been received from Elaine Vaudreuil. Selectman Collins moved, Joyce Brookshire seconded, to accept Ms. Vaudreuil’s resignation from the Zoning Board of Appeals. Approved 5 - 0
There was a brief discussion about signs on the Windmill Green. There was consensus that if you have a banner on the Green you cannot put any additional signs anywhere on or around the Green. The approved size for banners on the Green is 10 ft by 3 ft. Selectman Sandblom will work with Ken Lewis to mark the exact location for the poles which will hold the banners.
Selectman Collins moved, Joyce Brookshire seconded, to adjourn at 8:30 p.m. to go into executive session and not to return to regular session . Voted: Whitlock, yes; Brookshire, yes; Sandblom, yes; Collins, yes; and Burt, yes.