Board of Selectmen November 14, 2017
Karen Donahue called the meeting to order at 7:05 p.m. after returning from an Executive Session.
Present were Joseph Pacheco, Marie Smith and Karen Donahue.
Acceptance of the Minutes
Mrs. Smith made a motion and Mr. Pacheco seconded to accept the minutes of the Nov. 7th meeting as printed, Mrs. Donahue made it unanimous.
Department Heads & Committees
Chief Jim Januse was present to update the Board on the Activity Report for the month of October. Fires, fire incidents, mva investigations, and public assist were 126; Ambulance, medical emergencies mva’s and public assist were 181; Miscellaneous inspections, fire alarm work and items of note were 97; Mutual aid fire and ambulance, 5 ambulance given, 7 ambulance received; 0 fire given, 3 fire received for a total of 15. ~There were a total of 2,370 calls for October, 2017 which is 18 less than last year. ~~The Chief will be posting a lieutenants position, as Lt. Mansfield is retiring soon. Chief Januse updated the Board on several employees who have been out on extended sick leave.
Mr. Pacheco wanted to bring to the Board’s attention a situation at Sunset Spa, not only are there code violations but also an active and ongoing criminal investigation at the establishment on Rt. 138. In light of the information that the Board has received, the severity of the code violations, and the additional information regarding the criminal investigation which warrants some concern, Mr. Pacheco made a motion to revoke the license for Sunset Spa immediately, Mrs. Smith seconded and Mrs. Donahue made it unanimous.
Town Administrator’s Report
Mr. Flaherty reviewed the Town Administrator’s Report.
The next Department Head Meeting will be held on November 16th at 10:00 a.m. The North School bathroom renovation is almost complete and he is waiting for the painting contractor to contact him.
The Town’s new website should be online in a week or so.
Mr. Flaherty is working as Acting Health Agent and has reviewed one architectural renovation for Tedeschi’s which is turning into a 7 Eleven.
He will be attending the MHOA Conference on Wednesday and Thursday.
He received information regarding the delay on the Rt. 138 project. The delay is because of the utilities that are being worked on.
The next Selectmen’s Meeting if November 21st at 7:00 p.m.
The next Department Heads meeting will be November 30th at 10:00 a.m.
Mrs. Smith wanted to thank everyone who attended the program at the Legion. And there was a breakfast Sunday at the Lions Club, both were a nice tribute to the Veterans. Mr. Pacheco echoed Mrs. Smith’s sentiments and wanted to thank the Lions Club, Mike King and Congressman Lynch. Cong. Lynch has been so crucial in his efforts for the Town and does his job, Mrs. Smith seconded that. He always attends anything he is asked to go to.
Mrs. Smith wanted to discuss the Town Meeting and the lack of attendance. Years ago there was standing room only at a Town Meeting. There were only twenty five people in attendance last night and she just doesn’t understand who people don’t attend. She would like to see many more people in attendance next May.
Mrs. Smith wanted to make everyone aware that the Cable Channel will hold an Open House at the South School this Saturday, November 18th from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. There will be games, shows and a reptile show.
Mr. Pacheco discussed the situation of NOAH and allowing them to stay at the North School until such time as all the space was needed for storage and as Mrs. Smith proposed, the alternative which was the Gymkhana Building and unfortunately Town Counsel ruled that it was not able to happen due to restrictions so I just wanted to clarify for my knowledge, the intention remains to keep them there until the space is needed for storage so that would be my inclination. Mrs. Smith replied, I believe that is what we said. Once the storage gets in there, then they would have to move because we would need it for storage. Until that time there is no reason that they can’t be there. Mr. Pacheco said, I just wanted to clarify what was said, because that article wasn’t successful last night. Mrs. Smith said,
yes, I said it and I don’t think that the Committee would make any change to that. We’re on the final stages of the painting and I know Marsha has been in contact with the company that is going to do the work. Mr. Flaherty said, they’re due to start in March. Mrs. Smith said, yes, it will be two or three months before we get anything going there. But once they get in there and they start putting up their shelving their going to need the room. Mr. Pacheco said, well, what I thought was when all the rooms were filled with storage… Mrs. Smith said, no. What I said was when the storage goes in there, we can’t have that program there with town storage, it does not equate, it will not work. You cannot have strange people in that building with Town of Raynham documents, it just doesn’t work Joe. Mr. Pacheco replied, I hear your opinion but I was there the other day and I saw the new doors and the security system in place. Mrs. Smith replied, but those are the doors
that are going to be needed to go into the building. Mr. Pacheco replied, but there’s two doors. Mrs. Smith replied, yes and there’s two rooms. Mr. Pacheco said, maybe we can meet in the middle and get some clarification from the department heads and send out a memo from our office getting confirmation from what departments are planning on using the storage. Because I’m still hearing certain departments are not going to use the storage and I want to be all on the same page in how we’re going to handle this. Mrs. Smith said, we’re going over this and over this, I would just really like to know why the concern is that we have to provide space for a non-profit in one of our buildings. Mr. Pacheco replied, I don’t look at it as a non-profit, I look at it as an extension of Animal Control and absent them doing this, we have to deal with the cats. I think everybody knows I’m not a cat fan, but we have an opportunity to do some real
good in the community with two people who are doing this free of charge. Whereas other communities are spending a fortune doing it and to me it’s not about a non-profit even though a non-profit is involved. It is run by both the Animal Control Officer and Assistant Animal Control Officer and that non-profit would have to do other things with those cats and that’s where my concern comes from. I said it from day one that we need a place for them that’s why when the Gymkhana building came up I had no problem doing that and I supported that motion to put that on as an article on the Town Meeting but Town Counsel said, we can’t do that. Mrs. Smith replied, I have no qualm with that because if it’s not right for it, it’s not right. But I still don’t feel that the Town of Raynham is responsible for providing a space. Mr. Pacheco replied, I do. Mrs. Smith said, the only reason I feel like that is because it does open the door to any
other non-profit. Mr. Pacheco said, I disagree. Mrs. Smith said, the Food Bank is another non-profit. Mr. Pacheco replied, but the Food Bank is not an entity of a Town Department. Mrs. Smith said, neither is that program. Mr. Pacheco said, I disagree and that is where we have a difference of opinion. Mrs. Smith said, I respect your opinion, but I disagree with you wholeheartedly. Mrs. Donahue said, we have storage here, everybody comes into the Town Hall and there are plenty of files in here. When we store it over there it’s no different for 2 hours on a Saturday that they come in. Those documents are going to be locked up. Here they are locked up 24/7 but they can come in here. Mrs. Smith said, it is my opinion that it does not collate storage. Cats and storage can’t coexist, they are there temporarily until the storage is going in and the storage is going in those rooms. Mr. Pacheco said, that is
really where the differences come in, I think we both agree they are there temporarily, I think they are there temporarily until every room is full of storage, but you think that they are there temporarily until storage goes in. And to me I don’t think that’s fair because I still don’t believe all that building is going to be utilized. Mrs. Smith said, it isn’t fair because we still don’t know how they got there to begin with. Mr. Pacheco said, they had asked this office. Mrs. Smith said really, I was never asked. Mr. Pacheco said, I can’t speak to why you were asked or not asked. Mrs. Smith replied, well why not is this not a Board? Mr. Pacheco replied, it is but Randy communicated to us just like Dave communicates to us and that communication is privileged between that Board member and the Town Administrator. I don’t ask Dave what he tells you and I didn’t ask Randy what he told you. I can’t speak to
that. Mrs. Smith said, if we’re making a decision for the Board then the Board should be in on the decision that you make, no matter what it is. Mr. Pacheco replied, I made the decision for myself and whether other members consented or didn’t consent I don’t know. All I know is when I was asked about it, I said that I supported it. And the charge of the North School Committee is advisory in nature, they advise us, they don’t dictate what happens at the North School, we do. And again, if storage is needed, I understand that was the original intent and I have no issues with that, but if we end up filling one room with storage I don’t see why we can’t keep note of that. Mrs. Smith replied, I am not going back on my word and that is when the storage goes in there, we’ll see how much storage is used. And I’m going to tell you Joe, it doesn’t work, cats and storage do not work, it’s not going to work. In the first place
it was supposed to be once a month for 2 hours, that’s what we were told. Linda Bracket, Asst. Animal Control Officer was present as said, no and Adam can probably speak to this more than I can because I was not involved in the original talks, I just know one day Adam called and said we have a place for Animal Control and for you to do adoptions, because of the cats your taking in for the Town we need a place to place them. It wasn’t once a month, there was no time frame given or it has to be from ten to two, there was never a restriction. Adam Perry, Animal Control Officer was present and said when I had gone to Randy, I asked him if I could use the space in the school and he said he would get back to me, I don’t know who he talked to, but I was given permission and I don’t know who he talked to about the space, there was no hours or set time. It was just that we could use the space and renovate it how we please and that’s as far as it went and we
thought we had the space indefinitely. We’ve had it for three years now and we haven’t had any issues. Adam gave the Board a letter requesting permission for the continued use of the space in the North School. Linda Bracket said, she had paid for the treatment of many, many animals at no cost to the Town. Two weeks ago I got an animal control call that there were several kittens in a shed that was being torn down at Bradford Trailer Sales, the Town has no resources for those kittens, I left work and picked up those kittens which needed to be bottle fed which probably cost about $250.00 for formula and everything else they need. Never mind the time and effort that I have to put into lovingly care for these kittens, the mother was caught and taken to the Taunton Cat Hospital to be spayed and I just got the bill it is $486.00. How many cats can we afford to spay with the budget that we have? We cannot do that. Normally, I would
have made arrangements to get the cat up to my vet, and you can’t just leave a feral cat in the truck for days. So, we had no choice we’ve spayed and neutered about 420 cats in the last 5 years in Town, at our cost not at the cost of the Town. This is the first bill the Town has seen for anything that we have done. Those kittens that are being taken care of, the Town’s not getting a bill for those cats, if NOAH didn’t take them, they would have been put to sleep because there is no resource. The other thing I’m doing is, I’m taking two adult cats as a favor to the Lakeville Animal Hospital, I don’t really have a place to put them, but I’m taking them because he works with us, he’s very helpful. We had an incident in the Summer time, and Adam was on vacation we trapped a dog who I personally could not handle, I can’t handle a 90 pound dog. I called Dave and he was right there, so I’m taking these cats because one hand washes the
other. If I don’t have a place to place these cats, I can’t do that. We’re not going to have a relationship with these other Towns like Bridgewater. We do so much good, but we need the resources in order to do this good. Mr. Pacheco said, so I would ask if we could to circulate that request to get a better gage for the storage and then we could revisit this topic next week, if that’s amenable to you Mrs. Smith. Mrs. Smith replied, we can do that if you want but I’m not going to change my mind for the reasons that I have stated more than once. Mr. Pacheco said, no I hear you, we clearly have a difference of opinion. Mrs. Smith said, it goes a little more than a difference of opinion, because I’m tired of hearing about NOAH, NOAH is a non-profit. Do you have your forms that were requested of you. Linda replied, yes I turned them into David. David Flaherty replied, yes. Mrs. Smith asked, liability insurance? Linda replied, yes and an occupancy certificate for
us to have occupancy in the building. Mrs. Smith asked, so you have your Articles of Incorporation and your 990 Forms? Linda replied, he didn’t ask for that but yes. Mrs. Smith said, well I’d like a copy of them for the past three years. Linda replied, no problem. Mrs. Smith said, we’ll go from there on looking how much storage is going to be in there. The letter was very nice, but I’m sorry, but in my opinion, No. Linda replied, so there’s no place for Animal Control to conduct business. Mrs. Smith replied, what I’m saying is the building I thought we were going to be able to use, we can’t use. Linda replied, no fault of ours. Mrs. Smith replied, no fault of ours either. And there’s no other building in Town that I know of that can be used. Do you know of any other place in Town? Mr. Pacheco replied, no and that’s also why I wanted to start this conversation now because, I
understand where you’re coming from Mrs. Smith and we disagree but I, in good conscience can’t just put them out in the street. I can’t. Mrs. Donahue agreed and said, no. Mrs. Smith replied, I guess I don’t have a conscience. Adam asked, Animal Control shouldn’t have an office either? Mrs. Smith replied, Adam I told you a few weeks ago that you should start thinking about having a kennel of your own. Linda replied, we don’t need it. Mrs. Smith replied, Linda, don’t say you don’t need it, he saying he needs an office. Adam replied, right now we have a building that’s perfect and your just going to fill up the whole building with storage it just doesn’t make much sense. Linda replied, there’s a difference between an office and a kennel. Mrs. Smith replied, I think I know the difference. Linda said then ok, then I guess I don’t understand the statement. Last year the Town spent $500 on the
dogs in Lakeville, that’s all the Town spent. Mrs. Smith asked, didn’t you say recently that building is for sale? Linda replied, no. Mrs. Smith asked, I thought that’s what you said at the North School meeting? Linda replied, no absolutely not. The kennel on Carver Street is for sale, we don’t use that kennel that has nothing to do with Lakeville. Lakeville is a Town owned building. Mrs. Smith asked what is the asking price the Carver Street kennel? Linda replied $699,000, but my point is I have lived in this Town for 29 years and my real estate taxes have gone from $900 a year to $5,000 to think that we’d spend even $500,000 for a kennel and then for people to staff it and insure it and whatever else would be needed, when we spent $500 last year in Lakeville, I can’t justify that. You paid nothing last year for cats and $500 for dogs. You’re going to need a full time person, I can’t be a full time person,
it just seems fiscally irresponsible. What I would like is a new animal control car it shakes when you step on the brakes. Mr. Pacheco said we’re going to try to get a new car for you. I drive my own car and spend my own money on gas. Mr. Pacheco asked, Dave between now and next week can you try to get more concise feedback from the department on who is going to use it and who’s not then we’ll go from there. Mr. Flaherty said, yes. Mr. Pacheco said then we’ll discuss this next week. Mrs. Donahue said I’m very ok with that.
Mr. Pacheco said I have one other thing it was brought up at Town Meeting about creating an Advisory Group to forecast and develop a proposed plan on how to handle budgeting moving forward in Town and what I would propose is a small group of 5 people. My suggestion would be the Town Moderator, John Donahue, Gil Alegi, Chairman of Finance or his designee, Brendan Loftus, Chairman of Capital or his designee, a Selectman a Chairman or her designee, and then a citizen at large or any other proposal that the Board might have. I would give them a charge to meet between December through February to come up with a plan and a proposal and present that to us by the end of February beginning of March, because at that point we’re going to be finalizing the May Town Meeting Warrant. So I would make that a motion to
the Board but also welcome input if you want changes on how I described the Committee and/or who the members would be. Mrs. Smith said, you have your money people that you have to put on it that’s what you have to have. Mr. Pacheco said this position might interest somebody where it’s a short term commitment and there’s a tangible end goal. Mrs. Donahue seconded. Mr. Pacheco said open it up until the 28th for a citizen to apply that will give them two weeks and then we can review whoever we get for applicants and go from there.
A request was received for a One Day Liquor License for the Bike Race to be held at Borden Colony. Mr. Pacheco made a motion to approve, Mrs. Smith seconded and Mrs. Donahue made it unanimous.
7:41 p.m. Mr. Pacheco motioned and Mrs. Smith seconded to adjourn for the performance of administrative duties, signing of Bills and Warrants with no business to be conducted afterwards. Mrs. Donahue made it unanimous.