HTML Version for the Civic News RyeBOSrclNotes032414revBfinal
NOTES OF MARCH 24, 2014 RYE BOARD OF SELECTMEN MEETING
Final Revision B – Provided by the Rye Civic League
Present: Selectmen Mills and Musselman. Not present: Selectman Jenness. Also present: Michael Magnant, Cyndi Gillespie, Town Moderator Bob Eaton, Fire Chief Skip Sullivan, Public Works Director Dennis McCarthy, Police Chief Kevin Walsh, Town Clerk Beth Yeaton, Beach Commission Chairman Mike LaBrie, Conservation Commission Members Jim Raynes (arrived approximately 6:40), Jaci Grote (arrived late) and Sally King, Open Space Committee Members Ray Jarvis (arrived late) and Lindsey Josephs, Budget Committee Chairman Paul Goldman. State Senator Nancy Stiles and State Representatives David Borden and Tom Sherman arrived at approximately 7:00 p.m.
Members of the public present included: Cecilia Azzi (arrived approximately 6:40 p.m.), Victor Azzi (arrived late), Mae Bradshaw, Lori Carbajal, Peter Crawford, Otto Grote (arrived late), Crystal Weyers (Portsmouth Herald).
Editor’s note: For ease in finding particular sections using the archived video and audio on the Town website, the elapsed time is indicated. Use the slider and the elapsed time indicated at the bottom of the video window to fast forward to the desired section. Videos on the Town website may currently be accessed at www.town.rye.nh.us by clicking on “Town Hall Streaming” at the bottom left of the screen. Follow the link for “Town Hall Live Streaming,” then find the meeting by date under “Previous.”
The video begins at 6:31:54 p.m. (0:00 elapsed) with the audio off. The audio was turned on at 6:36:05 p.m. (4:11 elapsed).
- Delays and problems with water main replacements discussed. Southbound Ocean Blvd. traffic to be rerouted onto Brackett Rd. to ensure completion by Memorial Day.
- Non-public “non-meeting” on the Conservation Bond upstairs with Selectmen, Conservation Commission, Open Space Committee, Town Clerk, Town Moderator and the three State Legislators representing Rye. Issue is apparently the strategy to overcome the irregularity in the passage of the warrant article (legally required prior public hearing not held).
- Selectman Musselman appointed Chairman, Selectman Jenness Vice Chairman. Committee assignments remain unchanged.
- Existing Town Hall Committee will be reappointed except one member who has moved out of town. One member may elect not to rejoin, and there may be 1-2 additional members. Selectman Musselman states that the contract will need to be awarded and the design phase will need to start very soon to stay on schedule.
- Lori Carbajal and Larry Rocha have been recommended for two open slots on the Beach Commission and there was extensive discussion of their ideas. However, their appointments were delayed in order to discuss with Selectman Jenness who was absent but expressed concern about compliance with the 1999 warrant article forming the Commission. Call to order (4:11 elapsed)Selectman Mills was calling the meeting to order as the audio was turned on. He announced that Selectman Jenness was at the doctor’s office and would be there “shortly, if at all.”Selectman Mills announced that there would be a non-public session beginning at around 7:00 p.m. He would take some matters out of order prior to then.
Greg Bauer regarding Winslow sea wall and 15 F Street (4:55 elapsed)
Mr. Bauer reported that he needed a two week extension for Phil Winslow’s sea wall. It was supposed to have been done by the end of March. With regards to 15 F St., he wanted to know the latest, before Memorial Day, that he needed to be off of the beach. He said that he had a couple of more weeks on Phil’s wall and that he would start on the other job after that, which would take another two weeks.
Selectman Mills asked whether he could be out of there by the first of May. Mr. Bauer confirmed, but asked what the latest date would be. Selectman Mills asked whether Mr. Winslow’s sea wall would need to be lowered as it was obstructing the view. Mr. Bauer stated that it would not need to be.
Selectman Musselman moved that the F Street job be completed by May 1, with an extension, pending inclement weather, to no later than May 8. Selectman Mills seconded, but there was no vote.
Toby Heisey regarding purchase of swampy marsh land (7:50 elapsed)
Selectman Mills suggested that the Heiseys return for a work session with the doors closed with regard to this. Selectman Musselman indicated his agreement.
Ashleigh Tucker, use of church parking lot for kitchen tour (8:30 elapsed)
Ms. Tucker spoke regarding the 23rd annual Kitchen tour on Saturday, May 3. The motion to approve as requested carried unanimously.
Rye Driftwood Garden Club plant sale (9:50 elapsed)
The four sign requests were addressed first. The motion to approve the signs, meeting the size requirements, from May 11 to May 17 at the requested locations carried unanimously.
Selectman Musselman asked whether the lawn was Town property. Selectman Mills stated that, as soon as one steps off of the church steps, it is Town property. The motion to permit use of the lawn in front of the church carried unanimously.
The raffle on May 16 was also unanimously approved.
Request for restoration of involuntary merged lots, 50 Jenness Ave. (72:58 elapsed)
Town Administrator Magnant stated that he had discussed the issue with Attorney Donovan. The suggestion was that it be referred to him for research, with a report back to the Board. This appeared to be agreed by the Selectmen and the owner.
Farmers Market signs (14:10 elapsed)
The signs were to be in place from Sunday evening through Wednesday evening from June 14 to September 14. Selectman Musselman asked who would take down the signs on Wednesdays. Selectman Mills stated that it was usually Jaci Grote. Jim Raynes stated that she would be there later. Selectman Musselman moved to approve with the understanding that the signs would be taken down each Wednesday. All were in favor.
Winter road ban (15:45 elapsed)
Public Works Director Dennis McCarthy stated that he found no authorizations in the files for him to impose weight limits on Town roads. The law states that the Board of Selectmen may implement weight limits on Town roads, or they may designate an agent. Typically a ban would be placed on all roads, with an application required for an exemption. If someone would be driving a lot on the roads, and potentially doing substantial damage, a bond might be required. This will be the first year since he has been with the Town that there would be a ban. A few roads will need it, this would be seen in the next couple of weeks as the frost comes down.
Typically the weight limits are set at six or ten tons, depending on the road, Mr. McCarthy said. One truck a day would typically not be an issue, but hauling more could be. There would be an exemption for utility vehicles for oil and propane delivery. Trash trucks hauling 15 tons and using the side of the roads can do a lot of damage.
Selectman Musselman had additional questions about when the signs would be posted and the weight limits. Mr. McCarthy stated that winter was the only time when there was an issue, and that he suggested a 10 ton overall limit for the Town, with the flexibility to establish 6 or 8 ton limits on certain roads. Signs would need to be posted. In this area, the necessary duration would be 2-4 weeks.
Selectman Musselman moved to approve the ordinance as presented. All were in favor.
Scheduling of discussion on conservation issues (24:15 elapsed)
Selectman Musselman stated that Sally and Jaci were outside. He asked Mr. Raynes whether more would be coming. Mr. Raynes responded that there might be more. He stated that Mike Garvan would probably be arriving. Mr. Raynes stated that he had promised Nancy 7:00. Editor’s note: This is a possible reference to State Senator Nancy Stiles, who was seated in the audience.
Beach cleaning agreement (24:35 elapsed)
Town Administrator Magnant stated that there was no change to the existing agreement other than an extension for three years. Mr. McCarthy stated that the Town had been maintaining the machine, which is just hoses and hydraulics. That is within the expertise of their people, he said.
Selectman Musselman asked whether everyone was happy with someone from the Town driving the machine. He referred to an argument at one point, while the machine was in the intertidal zone with the tide coming in, as to who was going to drive the machine. This was followed by an unclear discussion that indicated that it might have been Selectman Mills who was driving the machine when that incident occurred.
Selectman Musselman moved that the contract with DRED be renewed for three years. All were in favor.
Seacoast Half Marathon (27:20 elapsed)
Police Chief Walsh addressed this issue. Due to the fact that the Sagamore Bridge would still be under construction, the sponsor is looking for a one-time reroute. While usually the Police Department is reluctant to put races on secondary roads, because of the good history of over 20 years with the sponsor, Chief Walsh stated that he is recommending that the race go from Wallis Sands State Park, down Ocean Blvd. to Washington Rd. and then up Brackett Rd. and finally to Marsh Rd. and Parsons Rd. The race will be in November. The sponsor wants an OK for planning purposes. No application has been submitted yet. It will be 600-800 participants, all starting at the same time.
Selectman Mills asked Mr. Magnant whether he was going to run the race. Mr. Magnant responded that he was not going to. Selectman Mills said that Mr. Magnant would typically be 10 miles behind the elite runners. Mr. Magnant quipped that he would run the race if Selectman Mills did. Selectman Mills laughed.
Selectman Mills stated that he did not have a problem with the request.
Water main replacement (31:02 elapsed)
Police Chief Walsh stated that Hugo Key would be starting up the water main construction project again. He is very displeased with them. They never come through with anything that they say. They are planning to finish up the project that they have and then move down to Fairhill and replace the water main along Ocean Blvd. Editor’s note: During 2013, the Water District Meeting appropriated $3.4 million for the replacement of water mains in three sections: from Rye Harbor to Washington Rd., from Wallis Sands State Beach to Pollock Dr., and at Dow Ln. The first and third have been completed, although repaving needs to occur along Ocean Blvd. The second section has not begun. Chief Walsh stated that Hugo Key’s goal is to be done by Memorial Day. To expedite the project, they want to close down Ocean Blvd. southbound only. Traffic would be rerouted to come down Pioneer Rd., take a right on Brackett, then to Parsons and Marsh and finally a right onto Ocean Blvd. That is all State road. There will need to be a sign indicating that the Science Center and Odiorne State Park are still open.
Chief Walsh stated that the contractor had been informed that he and the Selectmen were not in favor of closing the road down. However, the contractor is very unreliable and, if he were to put a wager on it they would go past Memorial Day. They need to get this company done and out of town. This is another case where a low bid does not work, Chief Walsh said.
The company is out of Rhode Island and their staff is minimal, he said.
Selectman Musselman stated that the State could tell them that the road had to be paved prior to Memorial Day. Chief Walsh stated that that is planned.
Chief Walsh stated that he had OK’d flaggers. There was one flag company that he told them not to use. There will be a minimum of three flaggers and digital signs for the Science Center and the State Park.
Fire Chief Sullivan stated that there was going to be a new superintendent who would supposedly be more reliable than the one used during the fall.
Selectman Mills said that the permission should be granted, but with the right to withdraw it
Conservation non-public “non-meeting” (37:28 elapsed)
Selectman Mills asked Mr. Raynes whether he was ready. Mr. Raynes responded that he was. Selectman Mills then stated that they would then go into a non-public session. Selectman Musselman asked what the purpose was. Selectman Mills stated that the purpose was “to discuss the possibility of legal action with the State and the Town over the acquisition of the conservation land.”
Selectman Musselman asked whether the topic was to deal with the Special Town Meeting vs. State legislation issue. Selectman Mills responded that it was.
Editor’s note: The Town failed to hold a hearing on the Conservation Bond, voted by 2014 Warrant Article 7, by the third Tuesday in January, as required by N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. (“RSA”) 33:8-a, I and 40:13, II-a(c). Thus, this warrant article for the $3 million conservation bond, was not validly passed. RSA 40:16 and 31:5-b may permit a Special Town Meeting to cure the irregularity, however, according to the RSA, the same 60 percent supermajority as was required to pass Article 7 would again be required to cure the default. Following a recount, Article 7 attained the necessary 60 percent supermajority with only six votes to spare, 1001-656. It appears that special state legislation is being considered instead of a Special Town Meeting because of a concern that the Special Town Meeting might not vote with the necessary supermajority. There is a serious question as to whether either the Special Town Meeting or the State Legislature could constitutionally cure the default, inasmuch as an important protection for the voters and taxpayers, the hearing prior to the February 1 Town Meeting, was never provided. See Stevens v. Town of South Hampton, 114 N.H. 118, 122 (1974); N.H. Constitution, Bill of Rights, Article 23 (prohibiting retrospective laws).
Selectman Musselman, responding to Selectman Mills, stated that the issue was not a valid purpose to go into a non-public session. If the subject was the acquisition of land, a threatened lawsuit, a non-meeting with their attorney, or a discussion regarding acquiring the first parcel under this program they could go into a non-public session and talk about that. But procedural matters relating to Town Meeting are not a valid reason to go into a non-public session, he said. Selectman Musselman reached over and patted a piece of paper that was on the table between him and Selectman Mills.
Selectman Mills asked Town Moderator Bob Eaton what his opinion was, as an attorney. Mr. Eaton responded that he was not particularly familiar with that part of the law, but what Craig said makes sense. However, he has not yet read the memo.
Ray Jarvis stated that the Board has received advice from Town counsel which is not public. Selectman Musselman stated that they would have to have him on the phone to have a “non-meeting,” or there would have to be threatened lawsuit, collective bargaining issue, or an issue involving reputation. Editor’s note: See RSA 91-A:2, I(a) which excludes from the definition of “meeting,” “consultation with legal counsel.”
In response to a question from Mr. Jarvis, Selectman Musselman stated that they could choose to discuss certain aspects of Town counsel’s opinion in public, but on some they would first need his approval.
Sally King stated that she believed that Mr. Jarvis was referring to the phone call that they had with Town Counsel, and she would like to include that in this conversation. Selectman Musselman suggested that they get Town Counsel on the phone so that they could have a “non-meeting” and discuss his legal advice. At this point, Mr. Magnant grabbed his cell phone and left the room.
Selectman Musselman added “unless it’s something that can be discussed in public.” Selectman Mills stated that he would rather not. Selectman Musselman stated that he had not heard Town Counsel’s opinion in this regard as he had been out of Town. Selectman Mills suggested that Bob Eaton, having been there, could discuss what he had heard.
Mr. Eaton said that Town Counsel had laid out the options about a Special Town Meeting to correct the problem with the hearing on the Conservation Bond or go to the Legislature to pass a law. Mr. Jarvis stated that he did not understand that it was an either/or. They could go to the State first and, if they got nowhere there, go to the Town. But it could not be done the other way around. They could not fail at the Town level and then go to the State. Mr. Eaton stated that he understood that, if it was defeated in the Legislature, they could not come back to the Town. Selectman Mills indicated that the situation was different if it was tabled in the Legislature. Mr. Eaton agreed.
Selectman Musselman stated that whatever was done would be laid on the bond counsel.
Mr. Jarvis argued that, at the State level, they are dealing with procedure. At the Town level they are dealing with the issue. He suggested that the State could turn it down and then they could come back to the Town.
Selectman Mills interrupted Mr. Jarvis, saying
“can we just take a five minute recess, because, this guy, the Civic League is writing like a madman in the back and how his interpretation is, will be a lot different than what mine is. So, I’d like to clear the room, especially him, and then the rest of us talk. So let’s take a five minute recess until we locate, the, Mr. Donovan.”
At this point, most of those present in the courtroom filed out, including Selectman Musselman. At the time that the video was shut off at 7:15:41 (44:58 elapsed) most of those present had left the courtroom. Paul Goldman is observed talking with Selectman Mills and Jim Raynes is talking with Sally King at that point.
The door of the courtroom remained open. A few minutes later Selectman Musselman and Mr. Magnant came back into the courtroom with Jim Raynes and Selectman Mills still present, along with others. They were then reminded that a meeting with two Selectmen present needed to occur in public, unless there had been a roll call vote to go into non-public session. See RSA 91-A:2, I and 91-A:3, I(b). Selectman Musselman then left the room. None of this appears on the video recording as it presently exists. However, those watching from home were able to see and hear several minutes of the discussion before the video feed was terminated.
A number of minutes after that, a large number of persons filed upstairs. These included Beth Yeaton, Bob Eaton, Michael Magnant, Jaci Grote, Otto Grote, Ray Jarvis, Cyndi Gillespie, and Selectman Mills. It is believed that Selectman Musselman was already upstairs. The state legislators Nancy Stiles, Tom Sherman and David Borden remained downstairs. No vote to go into non-public session was observed.
Some time later, Selectman Mills came downstairs, along with Cyndi Gillespie and Beth Yeaton. At that point the three State legislators went upstairs.
At approximately 8:05 p.m. Selectman Musselman came back down and was conferring with Mr. Magnant. David Borden and Nancy Stiles were then observed leaving the building and waving goodbye.
At 8:05:44 (45:02 elapsed) the video resumes, with the audio turned back on at 45:10 elapsed.
Minutes approval (45:33 elapsed)
Selectman Mills reconvened the meeting. The approval of minutes was postponed until Selectman Jenness is available.
Organization of Board of Selectmen (46:00 elapsed)
Selectman Mills nominated Selectman Musselman for Chairman. Selectman Musselman seconded his own nomination. All were in favor.
Selectman Mills nominated Selectman Jenness as Vice Chairman. Selectman Musselman seconded. All were in favor.
Selectman Mills stated Selectman Jenness would “kill them” if they took her off the Planning Board. He nominated her for that and Selectman Musselman seconded. All were in favor.
There was discussion about the Budget Committee. Selectman Musselman stated that he would do that again as long as Selectman Mills was doing the HDC. All were in favor.
Selectman Mills was nominated by Selectman Musselman to the HDC. All were in favor.
When it came to the Heritage Commission, Selectman Musselman nominated Selectman Mills. There was then discussion that Selectman Jenness had done that the prior year, so she was nominated by Selectman Musselman. All were in favor.
Union contracts (47:30 elapsed)
Town Administrator Magnant stated that the Police and Employees union contracts needed to be signed so that they would in effect on April 1. The motion to sign these, with actual signing to occur after the meeting, carried unanimously.
Public Works equipment (48:24 elapsed)
Mr. McCarthy stated that a number of items were approved by the Town Meeting. The opening of bids for front end loader will be April 10, so they will be back after that date.
With regard to the six wheel and one ton trucks, there are State bids for both of those. He recommends that the chassis be bought off of the State bid. For the six wheel, the International, which is what they’re running now, is $79,000 plus some upcharges for a total of $79,845. The body and plows are in addition. For the one ton, the chassis would be $32,824 plus an upcharge for length, axles and tires for a total of $35,844. The body is in addition.
The Selectmen were in agreement.
Town Hall Committee (51:55 elapsed)
Selectman Musselman asked about the status. Mr. Magnant stated that letters had gone out to the existing members. All but Mark Luz had responded. Those responding have all have agreed to “reenlist.” Selectman Mills suggested that they advertise for new members. Selectman Musselman stated that it was a complex process with a cross section of the community having already participated and that he does not recommend new committee members. They will need to move four times as fast as last year. Decisions are needed in April and May. We’re refining, not reinventing, he said.
There was then discussion about Ed Hayes having requested to be added to the Committee during 2013. Editor’s note: Mr. Hayes is associated with Ricci Lumber and is part of the group that purchased the former Rand Lumber Parcel which is currently being considered for a Retirement Community Development by the Planning Board, with the back portion to be sold to the Town through the Conservation Commission. Mr. Magnant stated that Mr. Hayes had been encouraged to reapply in 2014 after volunteering too late in 2013 to be considered. Selectman Musselman asked whether Mr. Hayes had been to any meetings. The response was that he had not and also that he had not contacted the town again.
Selectman Musselman suggested that the full committee be reappointed, with a slot held open for Mr. Luz if he chooses to rejoin.
There was then discussion about the charge. Victor Azzi, who was present, said that he had reviewed the charge and had no changes. Editor’s note: Mr. Azzi is Chairman of the Town Hall Committee.
Beth Yeaton pointed out that Paula Merritt was no longer a Town resident. Selectman Musselman stated that she had been the representative from the Historic District Commission and there needed to be someone from that Commission on the Committee. Selectman Musselman mentioned Mae Bradshaw. Mae Bradshaw, who was present, then stood up, pointed out that she was on the Historic District Commission and the Heritage Commission and volunteered to serve. Selectman Musselman said that that should suffice.
Selectman Musselman then restated his motion, indicating that the existing members excluding Paula Merritt but including Mark Luz if he expresses interest, would be reappointed. He did not mention Ms. Bradshaw. Selectman Mills stated that he thought Mr. Hayes should be considered. He said that he would be voting no.
Selectman Musselman indicated that the vote would then be a tie. He asked Selectman Mills what motion he would agree to. Selectman Mills stated that there was none. Mr. Magnant expressed concern about the next item with SMP being the contract. It has been impressed upon him that time is of the essence. Selectman Mills stated that it would only be two weeks.
Selectman Musselman stated that a six week period is outlined for schematic design. He then moved that Victor Azzi, Paul Goldman, Peter Kasnet, Peter White, Lucy Neiman, Beth Yeaton, Priscilla Jenness and Craig Musselman be reappointed with consideration of Mark Luz and Ed Hayes at a future meeting. Selectman Mills seconded. All were in favor.
The discussion then turned to the contract with SMP. Mr. Magnant stated that it was complex. He suggested that a subcommittee be appointed to refine the scope and the cost of the contract. Selectman Musselman indicated that the subcommittee would consist of him, Mr. Magnant and Mr. Azzi. Mr. Magnant added that Attorney Donovan should be added.
Mr. Azzi indicated that he had seen the contract. Mr. Magnant stated that SMP, because of the short time frame, had requested that the geotechnical soil analysis and the survey proceed immediately. Mr. Musselman said that they meant borings, not the geotechnical soil analysis. Mr. Magnant affirmed and asked for authority to enter into a contract with SMP to do that.
Mr. Azzi stated that SMP had wanted the Town to be responsible for those items. He does not believe that SMP should be relieved of that responsibility. Mr. Musselman agreed.
Beach Club added to National Register of Historic Places (62:30 elapsed)
Selectman Musselman noted the receipt of a letter indicating that this facility had been added to the National Register last Christmas eve. There does not appear to be any action required, he said.
E-mail from Rachel Stevens regarding parking at Jenness Beach (63:05 elapsed)
Selectman Musselman summarized the e-mail, stating that she was concerned with too many cars parked on mornings when there are surfing activities. He does not understand how all of Jenness Beach could be packed with cars at that time. This is someone from Stratham. He suggested that the e-mail be placed in the record.
Adopt a Graveyard Program (64:04 elapsed)
Selectman Musselman noted that a letter had been received from Mae Bradshaw regarding this. Ms. Bradshaw addressed this issue. She said that 60-65 graveyards had been identified by the Historical Society. Some have already been adopted. The Heritage Commission has taken up the task, along with the Historical Society, of sending a notice out by publication to identify all of the descendants. If they do not come forward the graveyards would be deemed abandoned and could be put out for adoption. They are asking the Selectmen to agree with the plan.
Selectman Musselman asked whether the statute would permit access to graveyards on private property. Ms. Bradshaw said that no agreement with the landowner was needed, but that they would seek to obtain permission. In response to a question from Selectman Musselman, Ms. Bradshaw confirmed that, after the process had been gone through, the Heritage Commission could authorize someone to cross a parcel to access a graveyard in the back.
Lori Carbajal noted that there are easements associated with deeds, going back centuries, that allow descendants to visit graves. She is dealing with such a case in Nottingham currently. Ms. Bradshaw noted that her neighbor has persons traversing the neighbor’s property to visit a grave. She noted that the funds were already in the budget.
Selectman Mills indicated that he did not recall this having been brought up during the budget process. Selectman Musselman said that he recalled mention of this. Selectman Mills stated that the Heritage Commission was originally established with the understanding that there would be no expenditure by the taxpayers. Selectman Musselman affirmed, but stated that he did not know that it was in the warrant article. Editor’s note: 2011 Warrant Article 18 established the Heritage Commission and Warrant Article 19 permitted it to acquire the Pulpit Rock Tower on behalf of the Town, but only if a number of conditions were met. Article 19 provides that the acquisition of the Tower would be at no cost to the taxpayers, however the Tower has not yet been acquired. Articles 18 and 19 both passed.
Ms. Bradshaw noted that the budget providing for the expenditure had been approved by the Selectmen and the Budget Committee. Selectman Musselman paused for a long time, then moved to approve the program, subject to agreement from the private property owners for access. Ms. Bradshaw noted that, if access is refused, the graveyard would simply be abandoned. The Selectmen cannot disinherit the public from access so she does not believe that this restriction is legal. Selectman Musselman then moved to table the issue until Selectman Jenness was present. All were in favor.
Beach Commission appointments (70:45 elapsed)
Selectman Musselman noted that Mike LaBrie was retiring after a number of years of service. Mr. LaBrie stated that four individuals had expressed interest in two openings. There are two openings because he stayed on an extra year in order to serve on the Beach Use Ordinance Committee. He would think that one appointment would be for three years and the other for two years. One of the expressions of interest came in late, after he had made his recommendations. The other three were interviewed. He recommends Lori Carbajal and Larry Rocha. Both are Rye residents and have been actively involved in attending meetings of the Ordinance Committee. Both are passionate about the beaches and have experience as surfers. Larry has experience at the Jersey Shore in a lifeguard program as a trainer for many years. The big challenge at this point is the implementation of the permitting ordinance. Editor’s note: 2014 Warrant Article 23, providing for permitting, passed 924-733.
These persons are up to speed on a lot of the issues and will be good candidates to help implement that process. Both are here tonight and can answer questions, Mr. LaBrie said.
Selectman Musselman asked each candidate whether they had any comments.
Larry Rocha said that he had moved to Rye in 1992. He has spent his entire life near the shore. After moving from the Jersey Shore he worked on a PhD in economics in Pennsylvania. He was a Captain on the Jersey Shore responsible for 60 lifeguards. They addressed issues of crowding and parking. They had issues with surfers and swimmers. He was able to work as a Captain to get an accommodation. Here the issue is a bit different as there is free access. Twenty surfers is not an issue, but a hundred is.
Lori Carbajal stated that she feels that a lot can be achieved through compromise by all parties. It is not all that complex and would not throw a monkey wrench into business activities. There need to be sound, comprehensive rules put in place so that they are not back in another year addressing issues. There has to be management of group sizes and locations. She suggested moving the activities around so that they are not in front of the same houses all of the time.
She said that the permitting process will go a long way. Now there needs to be compromise with the public and the businesses so everyone is happy. She stated that the flag system could be great if implemented in the right way. Similar processes to those implemented elsewhere can be implemented here.
Selectman Mills asked Ms. Carbajal whether she was going to allow her warrant article to interfere. Editor’s note: Ms. Carbajal was the person who introduced 2014 Warrant Article 25 at the Deliberative Session. In its original form, that article would have prohibited commercial activities, other than those that are ocean borne, on the beach. As amended at the Deliberative Session to require only that this be considered, the warrant article failed 849-791. Ms. Carbajal confirmed that it would not interfere.
Selectman Musselman stated that he and Selectman Mills had thought about the small swimming area at Jenness Beach and the fact that surfers encroach on that area because they cannot see the flags. He asked how swimmers could be provided with a larger area while still permitting surfers to see where the boundaries are. Ms. Carbajal spoke about days on which the weather is hot and humid and the surf only ankle high. Surfing should be limited to a small area on those days, she suggested.
Selectman Mills asked Chief Walsh for his input with regard to opening up the surfing. Chief Walsh talked about the problem of kayakers being unable to see swimmers due to the surf. He also spoke favorably about Ms. Carbajal’s idea of a buoy system. York has something similar to that, but he wants to consider it further.
Selectman Musselman spoke about the difficulty of having young lifeguards be responsible for moving zones on a day-to-day basis. He asked about the paying jobs that the candidates had and whether they would be available to spend time at the beach to help with those kinds of decisions. He spoke about the day-to-day supervision of the lifeguards being under the Fire Department, with overall supervision under the Beach Commission. Fire Chief Skip Sullivan stated that this is how it has already been working.
Selectman Musselman asked who the third Beach Commissioner was. Mr. LaBrie stated that Peter Kane had one year remaining.
Selectman Mills asked Mr. Rocha whether he lived next door to Eddie and Irene. Mr. Rocha confirmed. Selectman Mills stated that he might have to recuse himself, as when Mr. Rocha first moved to town he cut down some trees and Ed called him to come pick up the firewood because Mr. Rocha didn’t want it. Selectman Mills pointed to Selectman Musselman and stated that he had a “big thing with me getting firewood.” Selectman Musselman said that Selectman Mills was not allowed to get firewood from Town property.
Selectman Musselman asked about the other interested person, Keper Connell, and the late expression of interest from Steve Hillman. He stated that Mr. Hillman had been coming to meetings and is very interested in working out a way for swimmers and surfers to get along. He suggested that the two of them could be appointed and asked to work with Steve. Mr. Hillman seemed to have a number of good ideas, Selectman Musselman said.
Selectman Musselman stated that his son surfs in Rye and went to UCLA and surfed at Malibu Beach. He is aware of how surfers and swimmers can be separated. If they can do that there, our problem is miniscule, he said. It’s a matter of managing it properly, he said.
Mr. Rocha said that, at the Jersey Shore, they had ropes that went out, with buoys on them, and an anchor at the end. These separated the swimming and surfing areas. Also, the surfers should know where the zones end, based on the positions of the houses, he said.
Selectman Musselman suggested that the Beach Commission be sensitive to the size of the swim zones, and not make them smaller. They are already very small, he stated.
Mr. Rocha suggested moving the surfing area around, rather than the swimming area. He would want to consider a surfing zone with no swimmers, he said. Selectman Musselman stated that he would need to be careful about that.
Ms. Carbajal stated that paddle boards weigh 35 pounds and need to be restricted to areas off shore. People should not be using them to ride waves in, as they do not have great maneuverability.
Selectman Musselman asked Mr. LaBrie which policies had been dealt with by the Beach Commission and which have been brought back to the Selectmen for a decision. Mr. LaBrie stated that the Beach Commission had dealt with flag implementation and the width of the areas. These had been discussed with the Selectmen.
Mr. Magnant stated that Selectman Jenness had called him regarding this issue, mainly having to do with the charter of the Beach Commission in accordance with the warrant article. Editor’s note: This is an apparent reference to 1999 Warrant Article 25, which established the Beach Commission. It indicates that a Beach Supervisor would be hired, and that the Beach Commission would act as a liason between that person and the Board of Selectmen. Mr. Magnant stated that we do not have a Beach Supervisor. He stated that Selectman Jenness had suggested postponing the decision until there can be a broader conversation, particularly regarding whether there would be a Beach Supervisor in the future.
Selectman Mills asked whether Greg Kendall wasn’t the Beach Supervisor. Mr. Magnant responded that nobody can find a job description for a Beach Supervisor. Editor’s note: The Town’s 2013 Annual Report lists Mr. Kendall as both the Animal Control Officer and the Lifeguard Supervisor. There was then discussion about Jane Tighe being the Chief Lifeguard, and that she will be returning in 2014.
Selectman Mills said that he thought Greg Kendall had been hired to supervise the lifeguards. Mr. LaBrie acknowledged that he was, but that he had been used for logistics. They have a head lifeguard and a lifeguard supervisor, which is the role that Mr. Kendall has been playing the last couple of seasons. Mr. LaBrie stated that he was not sure that they had not been following the ordinance. He does not know that Jane is not in fact the Beach Supervisor.
Selectman Musselman stated that she now reports to the Fire Chief. Mr. LaBrie acknowledged that this is true with regard to administration, pay and support. With regard to policy issues she reports to the Beach Commission. Editor’s note: The last set of Beach Commission minutes that appear on the Town website are for July 27, 2011. There are minutes for a May 2, 2012 meeting, however this is termed a “Beach Meeting,” apparently since Mr. LaBrie was the only Beach Commissioner present and a quorum was therefore not present. All indications are that Mr. LaBrie has been running the Beach Commission on his own since then. Mr. LaBrie has acknowledged that it is likely that the minutes on the Town website reflect the last meeting that occurred.
Selectman Mills suggested that the matter be tabled until input from Selectman Jenness had been obtained. Selectman Musselman stated that he felt that both Ms. Carbajal and Mr. Rocha would be fine, and that one should be appointed to a two year term and the other to a three year term. However, the issue should be considered by Selectman Jenness first. The candidates would not need to come back. Selectman Musselman’s motion to table the issue carried unanimously.
Beach Permit form (98:55 elapsed)
Police Chief Walsh stated that he had already had someone who wanted to fill out a permit form. He wanted to make sure that the last form that had been discussed was acceptable. The Selectmen present appeared to be in agreement. Chief Walsh stated that the request had come from “The Surf Shack” at the end of Wallis Rd.
Conservation Commission appointments (100:35 elapsed)
Selectman Musselman asked Selectman Mills whether he had any issues with the reappointment of Jim Raynes and Mike Garvan as members of the Conservation Commission. There is a recommendation letter from Jim Raynes, he said. Selectman Mills asked whether Selectman Musselman had an issue as these are established members, not new ones. Selectman Musselman said that he had no issues. Selectman Mills moved for their reappointment. All were in favor
Historic District Commission appointments (101:55 elapsed)
Phil Winslow was reappointed as a Member and Christina Remick as an Alternate with all in favor. Then there was a discussion regarding the appointment of Karen Stewart as a member and James Tegeder as an alternate. Mae Bradshaw interjected that Mr. Tegeder is an alternate on the Heritage Commission and there is a requirement that a member of the Heritage Commission be on the Historic District Commission. Right now she is the only member satisfying that. They are trying to get some depth. Selectman Musselman’s motion to appoint both individuals carried unanimously.
Heritage Commission appointments (103:45 elapsed)
Selectman Musselman then stated that the next item was the reappointment of Mae Bradshaw as a member and Alex Herlihy as an alternate. As Selectman Musselman read Mr. Herlihy’s name, Selectman Mills made a noise, then said that he had something stuck in his throat. Selectman Mills stated that he would abstain from voting on those two and let Priscilla handle it. Selectman Musselman then said “OK, can’t vote 1-0.” He said that the issue would be tabled until the next meeting.
Recreation Commission appointments (104:15 elapsed)
Selectman Musselman said that the next issue was the reappointment of Janet Stevens and Stacey Brooks. The discussion indicated that both occupy terms that expire in 2014, so the reappointments would be through 2017.
At this point, the video, as it currently exists, ends. The remainder was prepared from notes and an earlier version of the video that included the rest of the meeting.
Selectman Musselman then moved to reappoint both persons for terms expiring in 2017. All were in favor.
Policies: Personnel, Facility Use and Committee
Mr. Magnant stated that the Committee and Facility Use policies had been sent to the various Committees. The only feedback had been from Selectman Jenness, he said. He asked whether the Selectmen wanted to adopt the policies. Mae Bradshaw stated that the Heritage Commission would not be meeting until April. That is on their agenda for discussion then, she said. The matter was then tabled until the first meeting in April.
Ms. Gillespie then addressed the Personnel Policy. The definition of full- and part-time is made to match the New Hampshire Retirement policy. The Health Care section reflects the alternative Matthew Thornton Plan to the Blue Choice plan and the higher co-pay.
Selectman Musselman noted a reduction in the part-time threshold from 34 hours per week to 31 hours per week. Ms. Gillespie stated that New Hampshire Retirement sets the threshold at 32 hours. There was then a discussion about the part-time employee in the Town Clerk’s office. Ms. Gillespie stated that the 32 hours for that person is not regularly scheduled. She does not believe that this policy, if adopted, would be changing a part-time employee to full-time.
There was then discussion about Mr. Magnant’s regularly scheduled work week. Mr. Magnant stated that it was 28 hours.
Selectman Musselman then moved to adopt the revised Personnel Policy.
There was then discussion about the reference to the Fire Department, with which there is not a contract. Ms. Gillespie indicated that the policy would include a footnote that the 2013 rates would apply until negotiated rates went into effect. Selectman Musselman said that it should not say that, as the rates may never change.
The matter was tabled.
Non-public session, unsealing of minutes
Selectman Musselman stated that there was a non-public session to deal with Collective Bargaining and the unsealing of minutes. He asked Peter Crawford whether he still wanted the unsealing of minutes to proceed. Selectman Musselman asserted that the process to date was time consuming and useless. Mr. Crawford, who was in the audience, confirmed that the request still stands, but that given the hour, it was not necessary that it occur that evening. The Selectmen indicated that the unsealing could not proceed without Selectman Jenness in any event. Editor’s note: Mr. Crawford requested the unsealing of minutes relating to the Conservation Acquisitions that had already been completed by way of a letter dated January 23, 2014. On March 10, 2014, the first six sets of minutes were considered for unsealing. Of these, four were re-sealed and two were unsealed. One of those indicated that the acquisition of a Conservation Easement on the Connell property had been considered at a meeting.
There was then a motion to enter into a non-public session with regard to Collective Bargaining.