• Town of Weathersfield, Vermont

  • Town of Weathersfield, Vermont

  • Town of Weathersfield, Vermont

  • Town of Weathersfield, Vermont

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Latest Minutes and Agendas




Monday, 14 January, 2019

  1. Call to Order  -  Chair, Nancy Heatley called the meeting to order at 7:01pm.

Introductions:  Howard Beach, Sven Fedorow (Land Use Administrator), Nancy Heatley, Paul Tillman, Michael Todd, Julia Lloyd Wright (Energy Coordinator, ex-officio) 

Visitor: Ed Morris, Town Manager

  1. Agenda Review - 14 January, 2019

III.       Approval of Meeting Minutes -  10 December, 2018   

A motion was made by Michael Todd to accept Minutes of 10 December, 2018 with corrections, seconded by Howard Beach.  Voted:  Unanimously.

  1. Comments from Citizens - None
  1. Better Connections Grant application and updates: Resolution for Better Connections Grant

Ed Morris asked the Planning Commission for their approval to sign off on the application grant for municipal planning on the east side of town.  The $60,000 grant will focus on economic development for the village of Ascutney.  It will also include transportation and look at benefits that exist such as the Town Forest.  Ed Morris said with airport planning being discussed, committee members could consider a connection for the town.  The SWCRPC (Southern Windsor County Regional Commission) have agreed to help with the process and a report which will go to the Selectboard.

A motion was made by Michael Todd to endorse the application to authorize the Chair of the Planning Commission to sign the recommendation for the Better Connections Grant for the Town of Weathersfield and Village of Ascutney, seconded by Howard Beach.  Voted: Unanimously 


  1. Zoning Bylaw Updates

            (a)        Solar screening bylaw

An ordinance prepared for the Town of Bennington for ground mounted solar electric generation facilities in excess of 15kW(AC) was reviewed with the goal of preserving scenic quality set forth in the Town Plan.  The Ordinance further stipulated that all solar facilities be screened as set forth in the Ordinance.

The Commission discussed screening for Weathersfield’s rural, village, commercial, industrial and individual sites. Provision is already in the Town Plan to protect named areas of scenic significance.  An interim bylaw for the Town of Cornwall was also discussed.

It was agreed by the commission that wording regarding decommissioning of solar arrays be written into the bylaws.  Sven Fedorow will check on standard recommendation for performance bonds and write up a draft bylaw for the next meeting.

            (b)        Airport Uses

A Town of Springfield, VT Airport Approach Overlay District Map showing various Cone Zones was reviewed,.  Sven Fedorow will contact Jason Rasmussen (SWCRPC) to request an extended copy of the map to include the Town of Weathersfield’s areas abutting the airport.  There was discussion of possible industrial/commercial activities that could be encouraged to take advantage of the airport facility.           

            (c)        Proposed final Conservation (C-10) district bylaw

A final copy of the  2.5.6 Conservation (C-10) bylaw was reviewed.  Sven Fedorow will contact Jason Rasmussen (SWCRPC) to request that existing parcel boundaries be included on the map.  There was discussion on how a parcel split in the village with a C-10 property could be handled.  The Commission agreed to let the proposed bylaw go forward.

A motion was made by Michael Todd to accept the 2.5.6 bylaw changes, seconded by Howard Beach.  Voted: Unanimously

            (e)        Updated bylaw status spreadsheet

Work continues on updating the current bylaws.  After reviewing the list the Planning Commission agreed to move forward with the following reviews/revisions: 2.4 Expansion of Minimum Lot Size;  2.5 Table of  Districts and Uses, all; 3.2 Conservation of Natural Resources, all: 3.4 Nonconformities, all.

Regarding “definitions” Nancy Heatley said there may be issues or maybe non- issues but we need to check for need and print the definitions.

            (d)        “De minimis” bylaw for setbacks, height

Sven Fedorow raised the question of how the Zoning Board might handle an honest mistake if a calculation is flawed and is less than 10 percent.  This item will be continued at  the next meeting. 


VII.      Proposals for next meeting agenda on Monday, 28 January, 2019

            Bylaw discussion: 2.4, 2.5

            Draft of airport map for discussion                       

VIII.     Adjourn

A motion to adjourn at 9:04pm was made by Howard Beach, seconded by Michael Todd.   Voted: Unanimously.

Regular Meeting of the Prudential Committee

ASCUTNEY Fire District #2

6:00 PM, Monday, January 14, 2019



Members in attendance:

Prudential Committee – Everett Bingham, Paul Tillman, and William Southard


Manager – Ed Morris

  1. Meeting was called to order by Everett Bingham at 6:00 P.M.
  1. Changes to Agenda – None


  1. Approval of the Minutes from November 12, 2018


Motion was made by Paul Tillman and William Southard seconded by to approve the minutes from November 12, 2018.

   Motion passed 3-0 abstained.

  1. Cap initial Hook up Fee to 20 quarters – Ed Morris discussed capping the initial hook up fee to keep the costs reasonable for new customers. Ed stated that after some thought he actually would like to cap the fees at 25 quarters. This will make sure any fees paid up until now are under the cap and that the costs do not escalate to make it not feasible to connect. This rate would cost $2364.82 plus construction fees for a 2-bedroom home.
  1. Boat Access Update – Diana Day discussed the possible boat access on our property. She is not in favor of this proposal. Everette and I have spoken with her and have let her know the Selectboard will move through the process and allow the public to comment.
  1. Warrant – William Southard made a motion to accept warrant                               18078 with expenditures totaling:

   Operations = $2,646.65

   Project       = $0

   Total         = $2,646.65


                     seconded by Paul Tillman, Motion Passed 2-0

  1. Meeting adjourned at 6:25

______________________         _____________________            ______________________

Everett Bingham (Chair)                Bill Southard (Vice Chair)              Paul Tillman

Selectboard Minutes for 1-10–2019

Select Board

Martin Memorial Hall

5259 Route 5, Ascutney VT

Monday, November 19, 2018

6:00 PM

Special Meeting



Select Board Members Present: Daniel Boyer, Peter Cole, Tom Leach,and Kelly Murphy

Select Board Member Absent:  N. John Arrison

Ed Morris, Town Manager                                      


            Others Present:                     

Nancy Nutile-McMenemy, Vermont Standard

Darrin Spaulding, Chief, Ascutney Vol. Fire Assn.

Colby Hodgdon, Chuck Vivian, Ernie Shand, Sean Brown,

Robert Knight

Josh Dauphin Chief, West Weathersfield Vol. Fire Department

Josh Compo, Mychael Spaulding, Tracy Dauphin, Travis Compo,

Tim Austin, Levi Parker, Ben Waters, Jordan Bagalio

Julia Lloyd Wright, Recording Secretary 

  1. Call to Order

Ms. Murphy called the meeting to order at 6:08pm

  1. Fire Services Discussion 6:00 to 8:00pm

A draft copy of the “Fire Chief Hiring Procedure” requirements compiled by Ed Morris was handed out for review.  Hiring decisions for the new staff position, Town of Weathersfield Fire Chief, will be made by the Town Manager.

Ms. Murphy said that no decisions have been made and the selectboard are seeking thoughts on the proposed procedure from the fire departments.

Mr. Josh Dauphin said that WWFD had made a decision, as a whole (department), to move forward.  We are in agreement and we want to make sure the town knows WWFD are putting any past differences aside and to make it better for the town we are willing to do this.  It’s time to change and we are willing to step up and make the commitment for it to happen.

Ms. Murphy said that the process is going to continue past Town Meeting and we need to correct any hearsay for WWFD and Ascutney.  We need to think about the future with a Fire Chief coming in, a time in which to envision going forward and we want input to help.

Mr. Morris  said they should start with the thought process and read through Items 1 through 9 on the Procedure sheet

  1. Create a job description with the help of both departments, citizen input and the Selectboard during the municipal fire meetings.
  2. Selectboard gives final approval of job description and recruitment brochure.
  3. Advertise the position Nationwide with a New England Concentration
  4. A hiring committee consisting of the following members will be created:
  5. Three department members from each department

          (Mychael Spaulding suggested that the the chiefs from the two departments and not three members from each department.)

  1. Three citizens at large
  2. Two Selectboard members
  3. This committee with guidance from the Town Manager) will review the applications and create a list of possible candidates

          (Darrin Spaulding, citing past experience, suggested a final list with at least two candidates in case the top selection decided not to take the position.

There was a general discussion on how to hire a new manager and have three to four pages of tasks from the fire chiefs and firefighters.  Mr. Tom Leach said it would be great to get

more people involved.

Mr. Morris said they are looking for leadership qualities.  Mr. Tim Austin suggested a list of criteria to check off and to bring to the  committee.  Discussions will continue after Town Meeting.

Ms. Nancy Nutile-McMenemy asked if the Fire Commission will be dissolved, Mr. Morris said that had not been determined)

  1. This committee will conduct the first round of interviews and make recommendations to the Town Manager
  2. The candidates for the next round of interviews will be determined by the Town Manager
  3. The second interviews will be conducted by:
  4. Town Manager
  5. Selectboard Chair
  6. One or more fire chiefs from another town
  7. With help of the second interview board, the Town Manager will make the final decision
  8. The final determination will be brought to the Selectboard before a formal job offer is made


Officer Structure

Mr. Morris said the focus is on one department and will get away  from ‘this side of town and that side.’

The proposed new officer structure sheet reads as follows:

Citizens of Weathersfield


          Fire Chief

Deputy Chief          Deputy Chief

of Operations                  of Policy and Safety 

Equipment             Training

Captain                           Captain

2 Lieutenants                   2 Lieutenants

Maintenance          (instructors)



It was suggested that the Lieutenants should both be senior officers

There was a discussion on the number of officers on both sides of the town to staff the proposed new structure and how they should cover both stations.  Mr. Morris said they will need a time frame and stability on people with authority to make decisions and need an ebb and flow in managing.  Also the structure depends on how fire departments are set up with volunteers.  Ms. Murphy said the new fire chief will need a structure (in place) as a first step as they walk into positions.  Mr. Josh Compo suggested that the new fire chief should appoint his own deputy chiefs.  Staffing of various positions (such as drivers) can be strained during the days when volunteers who are working are unable to get to the station(s).  Ms.Murphy said the Selectboard should not be involved with the department.  Ms. Nutile-McMenemy said the Fire Commission was set up to work with the departments but Ms. Murphy said the Fire Commission needs an overhaul and it will have to be addressed as we move forward.

Mr.  Josh Dauphin asked about maintenance of the department and will a person be paid to set up the training, and who is in town to cover this and should it be shifted on the fire chief?  Other suggestions were: Getting a resume of every volunteer, asking individuals of the departments what they are interested in vis-a-vis training and compiling a list of every member with skills, experience and strong points for the new chief. 

Ms. Murphy commented that excitement is growing tonight, change is never easy doing fire service for the Town of Weathersfield.

The meeting ended at 7:40pm

The next meeting will be the first Selectboard Monday (of the month), the 4th of February, 2019

After a short break the Budget Review convened from 8 to 9pm.

  1. Budget Review

Budget sheets for the FY2020 Estimated Municipal Tax Rate Computation were reviewed.  The General Fund taxes are estimated at $1,253,560 with approximately $30,000 needed to level fund at last year’s rate.   Mr. Morris is currently working on funding the  $30,000 to close the gap.  The amount to be raised by property taxes will be $1,125,428

The final and fully-funded budget will be available for Selectboard approval at the next meeting then ready for the printer. 

  1. Review Warning for Town Meeting

The Warning for the Annual Town Meeting on Saturday, March 2, 2019 to be held at the Weathersfield School at 12:30pm was also reviewed.  Articles One through Four will be voted from the floor.  Monetary Articles Five through Twelve will be voted by Australian ballot at Martin Memorial Hall on Tuesday, March 5, 2019 from 10am to 7 pm.

  1. Adjourn

A motion to adjourn the meeting was made by Peter Cole, seconded by Dan Boyer.  Voted: Unanimously in favor.

The Meeting adjourned at 8:24pm



  1. John Arrison, Selector


Daniel E. Boyer, Selector


  1. Peter Cole, Vice-Chairperson


Tom Leach, Clerk


Kelly Murphy, Chairperson

*** BOARD MEMBERS *** PLEASE R.S.V.P. TO DIANE TESSIER AT THE WSSU OFFICE A.S.A.P. (E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or telephone: 674-2144, ext. *107.)
DATE: Wednesday, January 16, 2019
TIME: 6:00 p.m.
PLACE: WSSU Conference Room
I. Call to Order & Introductions
II. Minutes – Approval of Previous Meeting
1. November 5, 2018
III. Changes/Additions to the Agenda
IV. Public Comments on Items not Related to the Agenda
V. Discussion and Possible Action Items
1. Budget
2. Policies
3. Appointments/Resignations
a. Anne Callahan – Title 1 Interventionist – Appointment
b. Katarina Thomas, Para - Resignation
VI. Around the SU
VII. Setting the Next Agenda
VIII. Tentative Executive Session – Title 1, Section 313
*** BOARD MEMBERS *** PLEASE R.S.V.P. TO DIANE TESSIER AT THE WSSU OFFICE A.S.A.P. (E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or telephone: 674-2144, ext. *107.)

Select Board

Martin Memorial Hall

5259 Route 5, Ascutney VT

Monday, January 7, 2019

6:00 PM

Regular Meeting



Select Board Members Present:      N. John Arrison

                                                            Daniel Boyer

  1. Peter Cole

                                                                        Tom Leach

                                                                        Kelly Murphy

            Select Board Members Absent:

            Ed Morris, Town Manager                                     


            Others Present:                    

Colby Hodgdon

Stephen Brown

Chuck Vivian

Ben Waters

Caroline Taylor

Levi Parker

Mychael Spaulding

Tim Austin

Sue Brown

Natoshya Dauphin

J. Compo

Mark Johnson

Darrin Spaulding

David Picknell

Nancy Heatley

Richard Watson

Cheryl Watson

Josh Dauphin

Tracy Dauphin

Rebecca Gogan

Ray Stapleton

Darlene Kelly

Sven Federow

Betsy Koue

Corey Mitchell

Martha Zoerhide

Cynthia Porter

  1. Call to Order

Ms. Murphy called the meeting to order at 6:06PM.

  1. Fire Services Discussion (6:00 PM – 7:00 PM)

As had been requested by the Board at a previous meeting, AVFA submitted two proposals in response to the proposed change to a single municipal fire department. AVFA president, Mark Girard, presented the two options to the board.

Option A – (preferred by the AVFA membership) – a bid contract for $95,000 to provide services. $95,000 represents the cost of baseline expenses (dispatch, insurances, maintenance, fuel, etc.). They would still fund raise to cover shortfalls.

Option B – to accept the change to a single, municipal department, but with a number of specific conditions covering election of officers, retention of AFVA assets, stipulations on municipal use of AVFA assets and real estate, and more. AVFA opposes a full time chief on the grounds that full time is not necessary.

Mr. Morris disagreed that a part-time chief could handle the workload that will be required for successfully transitioning the town to a municipal department. He said both departments would appoint the officer staff for the first year. Officers would be a mix from both departments. The hiring committee would be a mix of both departments, the board, the manager, and citizens at large. Final hiring rests with the manager.

Mr. Morris urged everyone to move away from the idea of “station” structure and toward “town” structure. He repeated that buy-in from all parties will be critical to the success of this venture – everyone must be heard, have a seat at the table, and work toward building trust all around.

Ms. Murphy opened the discussion to the public.

Mr. Dauphin asked if the $95,000 included funding for purchasing motorized equipment. Mr. Girard replied that it covered the cost of payments on the ladder truck. Once the ladder is paid off, the funds would go toward buying a newer truck in about ten years.

Mr. Arrison suggested removing Option A from the discussion. The board agreed.

Motion: To reject Option A.

Made by: Mr. Arrison             Second: Mr. Boyer

The board said that Option A would not solve the personnel issues that have plagued the departments for so long.

Vote: Unanimous in favor.

Discussion of/Questions on Option B:

Josh Compo asked why AFVA is opposed to a municipal department and how this proposal solves the two-department issue?

Mr. Girard said the membership was not in favor of turning over their assets or the increase in taxes that will accompany this change. He said they felt this proposal had been “steamrolled” and did not like the way it had been presented from the start. He said it is a sense of ownership and pride. They object to the manner in which this has developed. They want a voice in who is chief and who the officers will be.

Ms. Murphy asked if the members can agree that having a municipal department will allow them to just fight fires with less meetings. Mr. Girard said yes, but they feel there are other ways to make it go away (e.g. Option A).   He repeated that they want to maintain ownership of their assets. He said he felt that there would have been more cooperation if the proposal had developed more slowly with more discussions.

Ms. Murphy asked how Option B addresses the issues that have been identified in these meetings? Mr. Girard said the town would have authority over the firefighters; it would have use of the station and assets; the firefighters would be providing services to the town under municipal management.

Mr. Dauphin asked if AVFA would still agree to the municipal department if the board agrees to a full time chief. Mr. Girard said he would have to bring that back to the membership. Mr. Hodgdon said the membership was split over this issue. They were mainly concerned about an increase in taxes – any increase.

Nancy Heatley, chair of the Planning Board, commented on how difficult it can be to find qualified, part time candidates.

Mr. Austin disagreed that this has been steamrolled – he said it's 40 years overdue.

Ben Waters thanked AVFA for bringing their proposal for discussion.

Mr. Arrison said he had become convinced that a full time chief will be needed to get this off the ground successfully. He said maybe in time it could be reduced to part time with paid on-call firefighters.

Ms. Murphy said we are being watched by other towns in the area as to how we are handling this. She said we have been transparent from the outset and everyone has been given a voice. The board wants everyone to feel they have had their chance to say and ask what they need to, while acknowledging that while they may not have gotten everything they wanted, they have been heard.

Darrin Spaulding said there is a shortage of firefighters everywhere and not just volunteer firefighters.

Ms. Murphy asked if the board was ready to make a decision.

Motion: To move forward with a full time chief

Made by: Mr. Arrison             Second: Mr. Boyer

Vote: Unanimous in favor

Ms. Murphy asked the board to think about how it will go onto the warrant.

Motion: To include (the cost of a full time municipal fire chief) in the general budget – not as a separate article

Made by: Mr. Leach   Second: Mr. Cole

Vote: 1 opposed, 4 in favor

Motion carries.

The next meeting on this discussion will be on Thursday, January 10, 2019 at 6PM – 8 PM.

The board took a 3-minute recess.

  1. Comments from Select Board and Town Manager

It was agreed to meet jointly with the school board at the next regular meeting of the select board to discuss budgets (January 21st).

  1. Comments from Citizens on topics not on the agenda

There were no comments from citizens.


  1. Review minutes from previous meetings – 12/10/2018


  1. None

Motion: To accept the minutes of the 12/10/18 meeting as written

Made by: Mr. Leach   Second: Mr. Arrison

Vote: 1 abstention; 4 in favor

Motion carries.

Review minutes from previous meetings – 12/17/2018


  1. None

Motion: To approve the minutes of the 12/17/18 meeting as presented

Made by: Mr. Cole            Second: Mr. Arrison   

Vote: 2 abstentions; 3 in favor

Motion carries.


  1. Continuation of Zoning Bylaw hearing from December 3rd, 2018

(Mr. Cole facilitated this discussion as Ms. Murphy had not attended the first part of this hearing.)

Mr. Cole said the board had requested non-substantial changes to the definition of building height; to sect. 3.2.4 habitat areas by removing the word near; and to Accessory Dwelling units by adding unfinished basements to the definition of habitable floor space.

Land Use Administrator Sven Federow said the Planning Commission had agreed to the requested changes.

Mr. Leach asked if there was a definition for unfinished basement. Mr. Federow said he would look to the listers' definition if needed.

There were no further questions from the board or the audience.

Motion: To accept the changes to the interim zoning bylaws as presented.

Made by: Mr. Arrison

Mr. Federow said these are not interim bylaws. Mr. Arrison agreed to remove the word interim from his motion.

Motion: To accept the changes to the zoning bylaws as presented.

Made by: Mr. Arrison             Second: Mr. Boyer

Vote: 1 abstention, 4 in favor

Motion carries.

Mr. Cole closed the public hearing.

  1. Social Services Appropriation

(Mr. Arrison recused himself from the discussion and stepped down from the table.)

Social service organizations seeking funding from the town and present to make their request included Hospice and Visiting Nurses; HCRS; Friends of the Meetinghouse; SEVCA; WISE; VT Association for the Blind; Green Mountain RSVP; Volunteers in Action; MT. Ascutney Prevention Partnership; Senior Solutions; and the Current.

The Red Cross representative could not be reached by phone.

VT Green-Up and Meals on Wheels gave their presentation via the phone.

The VT Rural Fire Protection Task Force did not present.

Any requests under $500 can be voted on by the board and put in the budget. The board eliminated those organizations that did not show up or answer the phone.

The board will vote on the requests at the next meeting.

  1. Authorize moving ERAF payment to Highway Maintenance Reserve

Mr. Morris said these funds are for emergency road repairs and administrative expenses that were incurred following a July 2017 storm. Mr. Morris recommended moving the funds to the highway maintenance reserve for future road repairs because they originated from road repair expenses.

Motion: To place the $26,290.10 ERAF payment in the Highway Maintenance Reserve.

Made by: Mr. Arrison             Second: Mr. Leach

Vote: Unanimous in favor

  1. Budget Discussion
    1. Capital Discussion
      • a.i.Highway Budget – Center Road Paving Discussion
      • a.ii.Fund Balance use
      • a.iii.Capital Expenditure
    2. Budget Overview

The total tax rate increase at this moment is 1.84 pennies (using last year's school budget).   Ms. Murphy said she wanted to get that down to 1 penny, which will require trimming $30,000 from the budget. Mr. Arrison and Mr. Cole suggested leaving it up to Mr. Morris and Ms. Kelly to find that $30,000.

At 9:01PM, Ms. Murphy asked for an extension of 15 minutes.

Motion: To Extend the meeting to 9:15 PM.

Made by: Mr. Cole      Second: Mr. Boyer

Vote: Unanimous in favor

It was agreed to continue the budget discussion at the January 10th meeting following the fire discussion.

  1. Review warning for Town Meeting
  1. Appointments
  1. Approve Warrants

Motion: To approve the warrants for January 7, 2019 as follow:

General Funds                               Operating Expenses    $29,050.66

                                          Payroll                         $22,829.86

Highway Fund                               Operating Expenses    $59,249.70

                                          Payroll                         $16,889.42

Solid Waste Management Fund

                                          Operating Expenses    $9,040.66

                                          Payroll                         $2,185.19

Library                                           Operating Expenses    $1,628.62

                                          Payroll                         $2,766.06

Grants                                           Operating Expenses    $848.50

Agency Monies                  Operating Expenses    $1,209.70

Reserves                                                                $0.00

Long Term Debt                                                   $0.00

Grand Totals                                 Operating Expenses    $101,027.84

                                          Payroll                         $44,670.53

Made by: Mr. Arrison                   Second: Mr. Boyer

Vote: Unanimous in favor


  1. Future Meeting Agenda Items


  1. Adjourn

Motion: To adjourn the meeting

Made by: Mr. Boyer    Second: Mr. Cole 

Vote: Unanimous in favor


The meeting adjourned at 9:09 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

deForest Bearse



N. John Arrison, Selector


Daniel E. Boyer, Selector


C. Peter Cole, Vice-Chairperson


Tom Leach, Clerk


Kelly Murphy, Chairperson