Chelsea Selectboard Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, May 3, 2022, 7:30 pm at Chelsea Town Hall
Selectboard Members present: Mark Whitney, Merrill Whitney, Geoff Clayton, Henry Cesari, Levar Cole
Other Town Officials/Employees present: Karen Lathrop (Town Clerk), Gayle Durkee (Treasurer),
Marianne McCann (Admin. Assistant)(Herald)
Members of the public present: none.
- Call Meeting to Order
Levar Cole, Chair, called the meeting to order at 7:30 pm.
- Conflict of Interest Disclosure
- Changes to the Agenda
Administrative Assistant will add a few items.
- Town Treasurer
Re: Budget: Heating Oil is high. Leaf Blower has been purchased.
Re: Purchase Card Options: Gayle Durkee is still researching options.
Mark Whitney moved to approve the orders. Henry Cesari seconded the motion. Motion passed
General orders: $13,624.77
Highway orders: $21,530.13
Rec. Department: $1,652.50
Payroll: $8,585.12, & $5,610.28
Library Payroll: $1,786.12
- Department/Liaison Updates
Henry Cesari discussed Roads, Equipment, and potentially paving the shoulder of the green along Route
- Cesari is building a committee of people knowledgeable and interested in developing a long term
plan for the roads. Cesari has two names so far, Kevin Marshia and Paul Libby, and seeks names of other
people who might be willing to help out. Cole suggested Mary Ellen Parkman. Clayton suggested one
person from each of the main back roads.
Cesari is looking into a similar plan for Equipment. The next two things needing attention are: Loader,
and Truck that needs Front End work. According to the Road Foreman, Chelsea always trades in the old
trucks to the dealer. Cesari questioned the trade in amount, and potentially selling the truck directly to
get more money.
Cesari explained that Paul Perry, engineer on the Route 113 paving project, asked if Chelsea wants the
shoulder paved along the Green, when they are paving that section. Chelsea could ask to have a car
width paved. Cesari consulted with Selectboard and Peter Amber about the impact to the trees. The
trees would be impacted a little. Karen Lathrop noted that more salt may be funneled onto the Green,
with more paving. Road Foreman is in favor. Geoff Clayton asked what are we gaining by having that
shoulder paved? Mark Whitney stated he is not a big fan of paving over the Green. Cole summarized by
saying, it looks like this is not happening given the concerns. Cesari agreed to contact the road
Re: Gated Legal Trail: Geoff Clayton spoke with Mr. St. Germain (sic). There is a question about the
placement of the trail. There is a remnant of the trail. The Agency of Natural Resources (ANR) atlas
reflects deeds. A question was asked, do we go by where the trail historically has been used or by the
Cole asked if the Zoning Administrator should look into this. Mark Whitney stated you must go back to
the map. Cesari stated there is a process to give up a right of way. Cole asked if there could be a
compromise to reconnect a trail? Clayton stated there is no prevention of accessing a trail.
Re: Cultural Facilities Grant: Levar Cole stated the Grant had been written and submitted with the
Furnace being the highest priority, then the balcony, ADA, etc. There is a 1:1 matching for this grant.
Chelsea could use money from the Town Hall Fund, or ARPA money to meet the matching requirement.
Cole noted that Mark McDonald had sent left a message encouraging the Town to apply for more
- Public Comments
Cesari stated the Road Foreman has no problems with the Green Mountain Gravel bike ride roads. There
was a brief discussion about which roads would be the actual route. Cole summarized by stating the
Selectboard has no objections to the Green Mountain Gravel Bike Ride’s proposed route through
Chelsea on October 9, 2022. The Selectboard requests that the Ride officials talk to private landowners if
the route would be going on private trails. Mark Whitney suggested letting the First Branch Ambulance
know of the planned ride date. Whitney agreed to notify EMS and Fire.
- Administrative Assistant Report
A Roberts Gould Field Request was approved and signed for 5-21-22. A Roberts Gould Field Request was
approved and signed for multiple dates for Chelsea Senior Baseball.
Levar Cole moved to approve the updated annual Local Emergency Management Plan (LEMP). Henry
Cesari seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.
ARPA Reporting Update: Chelsea submitted the required forms before the April 30 deadline. Chelsea
filed Revenue Replacement.
Levar Cole stated Tracy Simon and Doug Lyford are looking at the possibilities of getting grants from
VTrans for bridge and culvert projects.
Cole stated Tracy Simon was looking into procuring park benches for the FEMA buy out lots. Something
not in the way of mowing, maybe picnic tables, maybe benches, and maybe connecting it to the school
emergency plan. A dog park was mentioned.
Levar Cole stated he tried to figure out a way to kill two birds with one stone by combining a town wide
vote on Australian Ballots with a town-wide vote on disapproving the ATV Ordinance. The way to do this
is to have two Town Meetings. First, a vote on whether to vote by Australian Ballot. And second, a vote
on the ATV issue. The petition received sets up the timeline. The Selectboard has received feedback that
it is preferable to have as many voters as possible be involved. More voters participate if there is an
Australian Ballot. Lathrop noted that 230 people voted at the last (March 1, 2022) Australian Ballot while
only 40 or so attended the floor vote.
Karen Lathrop asked questions about scheduling and dates. Lathrop expressed an opinion that voters
might think the Selectboard was cramming things down their throats. There is a $3,000. Election budget.
Cole noted the anti-ATV lobby threatened a Special Town Meeting to disapprove the Ordinance before a
committee was even formed and before an ordinance was written. Cole noted all of this was part of the
public record. Cole noted that none of the board members initiated the petition driving the Special
Town Meeting and that the previous board budgeted more for elections in anticipation of a petition and
the Clerks request to have Australian balloting.
Geoff Clayton stated after dinner you would get more participation. In the evening it would be a more
Levar Cole moved to warn a special town meeting for the Town of Chelsea on Thursday, June 9, 2022
at 7 pm to transact the following business by floor vote: Article 1: Shall the Town of Chelsea vote on
all public questions by Australian Ballot pursuant to 17 V.S.A. section 2680(d)? AND Article 2: Shall the
Town of Chelsea adopt all budget articles by Australian Ballot pursuant to 17 V.S.A. section 2680(c)?
Dated this 3rd of May, 2022, By the Selectboard members of the Town of Chelsea. Henry Cesari
seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.
Cole stated with this timeline, we will still have time to warn and have another Town meeting or vote
within the constraints of the petition dates.
Re: Water and Sewer Billing: Cole stated the Selectboard has been asked to take a look at the water
billing. Cole stated a water customer had shared copies of bills of two properties within the water
district showing the same amount billed, and the big difference in the amount of water useage. Cole
directed the AA to send copies of these bills to all Selectboard members. Durkee stated Tim Courts has a
billing issue as well. Let’s explore options and put this on the agenda at the next Water Dept. Meeting.
Clayton suggests everyone has a base rate charge, then amount of water used on top of that. Cole
stated we need to run the numbers. We need an exact number of meters to be replaced. We need the
exact cost of a meter replacement. Durkee stated the meters were not read this past quarter. We need
to read them the next quarter.
- Approve minutes
Levar Cole moved to approve the April 5, 2022 Selectboard Meeting minutes. Geoff Clayton seconded
the motion. Motion passed unanimously.
Levar Cole moved to approve the April 19, 2022 Selectboard Meeting Minutes. Henry Cesari seconded
the motion. Motion passed unanimously.
Steve Thomas was nominated to the Alternate DRB position. Vote approved unanimously.
Kate Thomas was nominated to the Planning Commission. Vote approved unanimously.
- Executive Session for Human Resources
Levar Cole moved to enter Executive Session for Human Resources, and inviting Marianne McCann
into the Session, at 8:50 pm. Geoff Clayton seconded the motion.
Levar Cole moved to exit from Executive Session at 9:10 pm. Geoff Clayton seconded the motion.
Motion passed unanimously.
Afterwards, Mark Whitney will contact candidate with a few more questions.
Meeting adjourned at 9:14 pm.
The next Selectboard meeting will be: Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 7:30 pm