Author: Karen Lathrop


February 6, 2024 Selectboard Meeting Minutes

Chelsea Selectboard Meeting Minutes (draft)

February 6, 2024

Present: Kelly Lyford, Leyna Hoyt, William Lyon and Jesse Kay

Others Present: Gregg Herrin, Karen Lathrop

  1.  Kelly called the meeting to order 6:30 PM
  2. Additions to Agenda -None
  3. Conflict of Interest Disclosure -None
  4. Public Comment – None
  • Listers Appeal of Sales and Equalization Study 2023- Phyllis recommended appealing 3 properties in the Sales and Equalization Study the State sends to the Listers. Kelly noted the appeal was as to how the properties were sold and she read the appeal letter.

Jesse moved to approve the letter of appeal for the Sales Equalization study from Phyllis as read. William seconded the motion. All were in favor, the motion passed. 

  • VLCT PACIF- Insurance Claim for Town Hall- Kelly went over the three claims that came in from VLCT and noted Kasey would need authorization to sign electronically. Replacement cost of Pellet Furnace room was $4,500. Services from Lyme Green Heat and Irving Oil were $3,392.23 and Pellets and bag were $$4,680.  She explained their was a deductible of a $1,000.00 probably covered all three.

Leya moved to give the interim administrative assistance the authority to sign electronically for the VLCT  Proof of Loss for the Town Hall in the amount of $4,500 for furnace room, $3,392.23 for service and replacement cost value of $4,680.  Jesse seconded the motion. All were in favor, motion passed.

There was some discussion on the membrane. Leyna noted they could not find documentation on the waterproof membrane in the Town Hall Cellar. Leyna noted they needed to  have someone come in get an estimate.

  • Health Center Building – William does not have any information yet. Next step was to meet with the Health Center Board. Kelly noted they were going to have their own meeting. William to reach out and tabled any further discussion.
  • Log Storage at Heath Field- Leyna felt there should be a process for these requests. Karen gave some info from VLCT on insurance requirements for short term situations which would include a certificate of insurance with the Town listed as the Primary.  she noted VLCT suggested an agreement between the Town and Company for long term commitments and also noted the Town has Flood Bylaws to abide by. . Leyna to reach out to Mary Ellen Parkman, Zoning Administrator and Board discussed when to bring it back to the agenda, which sparked a conversation about when to have their organizational meeting as Town Meeting falls on their regular Tuesday. Board decided to have their organizational meeting on March 6, 2024.
  • Use of the Village Green – Arts Festival – The Chelsea Arts Collective requested the use of the village green for August 31, 2024 for their annual Craft Festival.

 Leyna moved to approve the request for use of the Green for the Arts Festival on August 31, 2024.  Jesse seconded the motion.  Jesse noted that the food trucks should not be on the green and it should be relayed to the Arts Collective.

All were in favor and the motion passed.

  1. Approval of Minutes 30 January, 2024 – Jesse moved to approve the January 30, 2024 minutes. Leyna seconded the motion. All were in favor and the motion passed.
  1. Approve Orders – Jesse moved to approve the orders.  Leyna seconded the motion. All were in favor and the  motion passed.
  1. Executive session for Personnel – Jesse moved to enter executive session for Personnel inviting Karen at 6:57 PM.  Bill seconded the motion. All were in favor, motion passed.

Leyna moved to exit executive session at 7:33 PM. Jesse seconded the motion. All were in favor and the motion passed.

No formal action taken – Bill and Jesse to follow up with personnel.

  1. Adjourn- Leyna moved to adjourn the meeting at 7:34 PM.  Jesse seconded the motion. All were in favor and the motion passed.

Statewide In-Home Vaccination

Statewide In-Home Vaccination provided by Vermont Center for Independent Living

No cost, in-home vaccination is available for anyone who has difficulty getting to or using a community vaccination location, including Children

For the safety of you and your family, in-home vaccinations will wear masks ( (including N95 respirators by request) No insurance information will be collected

Entire household- including caregivers and friends- can be vaccinated once for:

COVID (ages 6 months +)

Flue (ages 6 months +)

RSV (ages 60+)


Town Plan Hearing

November 7, 2023 Selectboard Draft Town Plan Hearing Minutes (draft)

Present: Kevin Marshia, Kelly Lyford, Leyna Hoyt, Jesse Kay, Bill Lyon

Others Present: Karen Lathrop, Gayle Durkee, Gregg Herrin, Carrie Caouette-Delallo ,Susan Elder, Snook Downing, Anne Carroll, Wyatt Kay, Gayle Durkee, Mark Vermette Neil Kennedy, Rick Ackerman, Jessie Schmidt, Jessie Schmidt,Cheryl MacNeil, Kendra Densmore, Justin Densmore, Eve Desjardin, Kristianne Gale, Max Quayle, Deborah Quayle, Marty Gratz(online), Robert Harnish (online).

Hearing began at 6:01. Kevin read the hearing notice.

The goal is to take comments from the public on the Town Plan. Susan Elder questioned if the changes were highlighted. Kevin stated they were in the draft Town Plan for the Planning Commission hearing but not this version. He went through the timeline of the Planning Commission Hearing (September 7, 2023) to November 7, 2023. Greg Herrin from the Planning Commission confirmed the timeline.

Susan asked if there were changes to Forests and Parks. Greg reported no changes to that section. Greg Herrin stated there were factual changes in Demographics and substantial changes to the School section. Kevin reported there were some changes made to bring the plan into statutory compliance. Greg noted Town Plans were good for 8 years, but the Planning Commission could start the process over at anytime to make changes. Kevin reported the Board found out in the spring that the plan had to be in place by November 16th.  Kevin thanked the Planning Commission Board members for their service as the Town Plan was under a time constraint for completion and as such they did not make any major overhaul of it.  Members of the Community stepped up and made that happen. There was discussion on Chelsea Design Control and Chelsea Historic District which was not in the Town Plan. Greg reported challenges with writing parts of the Flood Plains but they found out there would be some remapping coming but no dates set for it. Kevin noted under land use there were a few areas in Town that were commercial and mixed use and Greg affirmed there were no changes to that. Anne asked if the Town would be looking at zoning changes.  Kevin noted the Town & Planning Commssion signed a grant with TRORC to start the process of bylaw review.  The Board stated that guiding principle was to keep our Town Plan current so there would not be any impacts to the Town from Act 250 perspective. Kevin read the adoption of the Town Plan & Maps and a resolution for Energy.  There was a brief discussion on the Energy Resolution. It was there to give the Town more leverage with solar projects. It was noted the adoption would need to be done at the Selectboard Meeting.

No further comments. Hearing closed at 6:18 PM

| |

September 19, 2023 Selectboard Meeting Minutes

Chelsea Selectboard Meeting Minutes (draft)

September 19, 2023

Present- Kevin Marshia, Kelly Lyford, Leyna Hoyt, William Lyon, Jesse Kay,

              Karen Lathrop, Clerk, Rick Ackerman, Highway Supervisor, Michael    Whipple, Water & Wastewater Supervisor

Others present- Marianne McCann, Gregg Herrin, Harry Falconer, TRORC,      Kevin Geiger, TRORC, Sydney Steinle, TRORC

  1. Call meeting to order: Kevin called the meeting to order at 6:30 PM

  2. Conflict of interest disclosure: None
  3. Additions to the agenda:
  4. Contracts to be signed for Flood Contracts
  5. Public Comments: Marianne McCann stated she sent her resume by email and was interested in the AA position. She also noted that in two meeting minutes an award for work on the Sewer Pump Station had been incorrectly referenced. The Board thanked her for the feedback and stated they made edits to ensure the right name was going to be aligned with the award in the future.
  6. Town Treasurer – Cargill contract: A quote letter was received for salt from Cargill. Karen noted the price was .50 cents per ton higher than last year’s quote. Rick said they have contracted with this company, and they are reliable.  quote letter.

Jesse Kay, moved to approve the contract amount of 86.50/ton with a total of 275 tons. Leyna Hoyt seconded the motion. There was no further discussion. All were in favor. Motion passed.

  • Mike Whipple – Water & Wastewater Plant
    a. Update- Mike reported the company, Chamberlin Associates, were still on board with repairing the Scada System. The system at the Brookhaven Pump house was struck by lightning and was never repaired. The system allows the pump stations to measure the level in the water tank. The State performed a Sanitary Survey of the water system and said the system needs to go back online. The budgeted cost was $5,900 but Mike stated they would not know the true cost until the company started the repairs.

           Leyna Hoyt moved to approve the estimated cost of $5,900 for repair of the Scada system. Kelly Lyford seconded the motion. There was no further discussion. All were in favor. Motion passed.

Mike reported the Town wastewater system was working on an extended permit due to Covid, but the State was working on getting them updated. There are tests that are going to be required and the Town will have to buy an automated sampler system as some of the tests would run for 20 hours. The Board would need to budget for that, and Mike will research costs on them and report back to the Board. The Board inquired about grants that may be available for that or if the State will provide funding as they would be requiring some automation. Mike was unsure of whether that would happen.

The Board noted the budget was overspent due to the emergency nature of filling Nolan’s place and many repairs were required to the already outdated system so there would have to be some use of the sinking fund to cover those repairs. There was some discussion on whether there would be FEMA money available for any damage to pump house 4 door as it is in bad shape. Mike to liaison with Kasey on it. Mike noted Dimmicks company is up and running and we might investigate their costs for sludge management. The company the Town currently uses doubled their costs.

b. Department of Environmental Conservation Service Line Assistance – The Clean Water Revolving fund. Kevin reported the Town sent an application last spring.  He also noted there might be a meeting Friday to get the engineering with Otter Creek started. ANR inspected the facility in June. There were some corrective actions. Mike stated many are done and he was waiting for Dave Martineau for the electrical work. Mike and Kevin to draft a letter to the State on those corrective actions and it would get sent to each Board member to keep them in the loop.

7.  Two Rivers – Ottauquechee
a. Congressional grant for wastewater- TRORC had a discussion on where the Town was in the process of the Congressional Delegation Spending award, the EPA community grant, and the Clean Water State Revolving Fund. The Town had not signed the CDS and has not applied for the EPA community grant so far but applied to the Clean Water State Revolving Fund. Both Kevin Marshia and TRORC had spoken to Tom Brown. Kevin has a meeting on Friday with Mr. Brown. Kevin spoke with Rebecca Ellis last February. TRORC to reach out to Ellis on behalf of the Town. Kelly stated the Town had no docs signed yet. The Board requested help from TRORC. Kevin gave a history of what has happened so far with the Congressional Award to get a grant. He said the Congressional Award was just for the Pump Station. TRORC recognized the many moving parts of the process. Marianne McCann stated the whole file is in the AA office. Ms. McCann asked if the Town had hired TRORC. TRORC responded they had a state funded grant to help Towns. The MTAP program, Sydney Steinle runs the program and TRORC will reach out to the State to inform them of the request and get the required permissions.

b. Funding to update town by-laws – Kevin Geiger stated it is a possible project. State planning Grants are available, applications due by Nov 1, 2023. His suggestion was to go for a bylaw modernization grant as the program had more money and had 10% match for the Town which would be waived if the bylaws were adopted. This grant would incorporate the changes the legislature has made and to improve housing. The modernization program is to make the process easier, the standards easier for housing. Kevin G stated they just needed a nod from the Board to provide a scope of work. Also, the Planning Commission would also need to give an okay too. The process does have many meetings with the community for their input. Grants for by laws usually run from $12,000- to $15,000 for it. It would also interface with the Town Plan.

The board approved TRORC to go ahead with preparing the scope of work for Town By Laws.

c. Town plan questions – Sydney Steinle reported Town plan transmitted to the Selectboard along with a timeline. She asked the Board to have comments on  the plan to her by October 4. She would incorporate individual edits and send the Board a draft.  She went through the timeline for adoption. She explained the editing process to the Board. They must have their Selectboard Hearing on November 7 followed by Selectboard Meeting where plan would be adopted. The board decided to move the October 3 meeting until the 10th so all members could be present. Small discussion on Flood Bylaws. Some discussion about making any changes to the Town Plan if so needed. Kevin G. stated the Town Plan would be good for eight years, but the Planning Commission may start the process over to make edits at any time they so choose.

  • Highway Dept – Road damage update- Rick reported Upper Village Road almost complete. John Smith said there were two trees that should come down and some erosion stone needed to be placed in some gullies. The cost of which would be $3,000.00 over the bid amount. Rick’s recommendation was to do that to finish the work. The board had questions on bank stabilization. Rick reported Mr. Smith was going to put some seed down but just how much is unknown.

 South Washington Road work started today.

 Sidewalk work at the firehouse complete.

Work on Jenkins Brook is underway by AJ. Though he has to go back to finish a spot-on Maple Ave that he did not know was in the bid. Might be completed by Monday.

There was some discussion on whether mowing would get done due to time constraints. The board thought John might be able to coordinate that while Rick is gone. Rick reported work on O’Donnell and Blackhawk is done. Excavator not coming till October 4, the crew will start on the Pent Road first.

Rick stated a little more sand is needed and that his truck is back from being repaired. The crew can finish hauling sand while Rick is gone. Still needs to finish side filling East Randolph Road.  Rick asked about Edwards Road. Kevin said he asked if he could get a Geotech from a resource through the state to give us an idea of what needs to be done. Rick asked about temp fixes being okay with FEMA. Kevin will have to double check on temp fixes with FEMA.

  1.  Parks and Forest Commission- The discussion was around how to narrow down a list of 12 people interested in the positions. Board opted to have Jesse and Kasey draft an email to them along with the bylaw and to also include what other areas of the Town need volunteers so they would know there are multiple committee’s that need volunteers.
  1.  Planning Commission – Greg Herrin reported they had covered everything    when Kevin Geiger was speaking. The Board thanked Greg and the whole Board for stepping up when the Town needed them.
  1.  Jesse gave a comprehensive update on the process they thought would work going forward with the punch cards, stickers, and guidance for the Clerk and Treasurer. Board discussion on Annual Renewal date and chose January 1st of the year. There was discussion about how onerous it would prove to be figuring out who was a resident (a resident is anyone who pays taxes in Chelsea) if there were two sets of stickers. Most of the Board thought it would be better to have just one fee, that way stickers could be sold at the stores as well as punch cards. It would make tracking easier as well for the clerk and easier to sell online. There would be a fee for online sales of $2.50 to cover the cost of using the digital portal and postage.  Discussion on what happens if a household has more than one car. Maybe Snook would be able to make that decision. There was discussion on when to roll it out. Jesse was waiting to get some more data from Snook(a two-week average of persons using the Transfer Station). Greg had input on marketing ideas. Town Clerk could possibly get word in the Herald through Town Clerk News. More follow up at the next meeting.

13. FEMA Update- Not much to say according to Kasey’s note. Pedestrian bridge costs needed.  Kevin and Leyna met with a state consultant, Thad last week on Edwards Rd and Pedestrian Bridge and Maple Avenue. Also met with a person on the basement mitigation.  The pedestrian bridge needs some engineering, they checked out Maple Ave., and the consultant said to start work on Edwards. The basement was looked at with Leyna. Kasey will need to get bills together to see if we meet a $ threshold. Karen stated Irving was coming to clean furnaces next week. Leyna to research what vapor barrier cost would be. Update on where items in the hall will reside.  Rick to store some items at the Garage. Kevin to ask Judy Libby to pick up the food for the food shelf. Discussion on dehumidifiers. Most people will need them this spring. The board decided that those that haven’t returned them could keep them. The board decided to donate some fans to the school.

  1. Liquor Licenses – Tim Ward- Limit Assets- Kelly wanted a discussion about how we approve new liquor licenses. She felt if the Board was approving a new liquor license, they should give abutters some notice for feedback.  As the liquor control board for the Town, they may make any policy. The board agrees and in time there will be a policy drafted.

           Leyna Hoyt moved to approve the 1st,3rd class and outside consumption permit renewals for Limit Assets.  Jesse Kay seconded the motion. There being no further discussion, all were in favor. Motion passed.

  1. * Added item* Board administratively signed contract with John Smith ($27150), and Tim Ward ($25,311.88) which were approved at time of bid selection.
  2. Jesse Kay moved to approve orders. Bill Lyon seconded the motion. No Discussion. All were in favor. Motion passed.
  1.  Approve Meeting Minutes-September 5, 2023- Discussion on who saw the minutes. Kelly Lyford moved to table approval with Bill Lyon seconding the motion.  There being no further discussion. All were in favor. Motion passed.
  1.  Executive Session- personnel- Kevin stated a need to go into executive session for personnel.

Leyna Hoyt moved to go into executive session for personnel at 9:08 inviting Karen Lathrop. Motion seconded by Jesse Kay. All were in favor, Motion passed.

            Jesse Kay moved to exit executive session at 10 PM. Motion seconded by William Lyon . No Discussion. Motion Passed.

            Action- Board decision to move forward with a Town Administrator position, moving forward writing  a job description for the position/salary for the next meeting.

            Decision on employee salary. Leyna Hoyt moved to adjourn at 10.01pm with Jesse Kay seconding the motion. No Discussion. All were in favo