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Minutes of Town Board Meetings

Minutes of November 28, 2006

December 1st, 2006

Carroll Budget Committee
Minutes of November 28, 2006

Members present: Linda Dowling, Tom Gately, Carmine Fabrizio, Karen Moran, Ken Mills, Excused: Pam Walsh, Bonnie Moroney Others present: Karen Carew, Al Strasser, Bill Dowling, Claire Gritzer, Billy Rines. Chair called the meeting to order at 7:03.

Tom motioned to accept the minutes of 11/21/06 as written, Carmine seconded, all in favor.

Billy Rines addresses the Highway, General Buildings, Water budgets for 2007:
• Salaries were set by Selectmen-Billy was informed they reflect a 5% increase
• Tom asked why account 4312.10-201 had been overspent by $
• Billy indicated that new tires were purchased, among other items.
• Linda wondered how many plow blades are replaced each year, Billy responded 2 per year as he uses carbide which last much longer than steel.
• Linda asked for an explanation of the snow plow blade vs. cutting edge.
• Ken asked if there were procurement procedures to ensure that the best price is found.
• Billy indicated that for items like plows and cutting edges, there is not a state bid.
• Regarding radios in 4312.10-270 much discussion took place regarding the need for the highway trucks to be able to communicate with each other and with local emergency responders. Radios with the frequency strength to trip the repeaters are approximately $1,800.
• Trailer request in the line item of $6,000 can be reduced to $3,650 because the recycling center purchased a trailer so highway does not need one.
• Tom wondered what road grading entailed as none of the dirt roads are town roads-Billy said shoulder etc need to be graded periodically, and he will contact Bethlehem regarding use of their grader
• General discussion took place regarding the ability to use money out of different line items if it becomes necessary-Selectmen can approve moving money
• Tom thought the $10,000 budgeted for resurfacing and hot-top was far too low. Billy agreed. Al Strasser stated he wanted to put a warrant article in for an additional $40,000, in case the budget is not approved he wanted to have funds available for road repair. Discussion ensued about the integrity of the budget and it was determined that the line item should reflect what the anticipated spending actually is. $50,000 would resurface completely about 1 mile of roadway.
• Highway block grant revenues have posted to the general fund. Linda suggested a warrant article to establish a special revenue fund. Karen Carew suggested grants must post to the general fund, but suggested establishing a capital reserve fund as a set aside for significant road expenses.
• Al Strasser then suggested Billy meet, perhaps in the spring, with the state regional superintendent to do a “drive around” to look at the roads that need repair. Karen Moran suggested that will be after the budget vote, and we need a solid estimate of road repairs to put forth. Discussion took place again regarding the $50,000 to put in the line item.
• Mowing budget estimated at $3,700 based on $3,685 paid in 2006
• One large culvert was replaced in 2006, so the estimate of $2,500 for 2007 is reasonable.
• Salt and sand budget set-Karen asked about the state requirement to secure the salt from leaching into the groundwater-Billy said it is covered with plastic and set in a form, which complies with state regulations
• Gravel line item is used to grade the road shoulders
• Bridge repair line item relates to Fahey bridge-only town bridge
• Gasoline estimate of $6,000 reasonable based on current costs and annualized year-to-date
• Clothing was put to bid with Unifirst uniforms supplying 11 uniforms for the highway department. $1,500 covers that for all employees. After discussion, it was recommended this line item be increased to $2,000 to purchase gloves, rubber boots, etc. Each has steel toed boots.
• Sidewalk repair was discussed in detail. All sidewalks are town responsibility, whether road is a state or town road.
• Tom asked about the price of the radios and whether a warrant article should be submitted to the selectmen
• Other warrant article suggestions and discussion were the highway block grant going into a capital reserve fund, purchase of new plow blades, new 1 ton pickup and plow
• Linda asked how the new truck and plow would be worded-Karen suggested the new truck would come out of the municipal truck fund, and the plow would come out of the highway equipment fund

Regarding Street Lighting account 4316.10-200, budget is $2,600 less this year than last. Discussion ensued about new street lights on Twin View Drive and at the town hall. Linda thought one had been requested for Harmony Hill; Billy was unaware of the request. Karen offered to provide the Consumer Affairs phone number for the NH Public Utilities Commission if PSNH is unresponsive to Billy’s request to have a pole set on Twin View. (Phone number emailed to the town hall 11/29/06-271-6029). Poles on public roads must be approved as necessary by the Police and Road Agent.

Regarding General Buildings-accounts 4194.10-xxx
• Linda thanked Billy for repairing the shutter on the town hall.
• New Janitor hired for $205 per week, annually $10,660-Karen to check with Sue K if we have a contract, if the weekly pay is for 52 weeks
• Janitor supplies line item will also be verified if in contract for new janitorial service
• Labor is normally Billy and Scott, with Art Savona hired as contract labor as needed
• Electricity is for every town building monthly
• Heating was put to bid last year, Irving lowest bidder but would not service. Stiles chosen this year

Regarding Water-accounts 4332
• Scott Hayes is paid from account 4332.10-200 as contract labor to help get meters up and running
• The pocket probe used to read the meters has already been bought
• 1000 gallon propane tank, so line item for propane should be approximately $2,300
• Clerical line item $1,000 is Becki Peterson as she is doing most of the office work
• Water supplies represents all supplies for new lines on Harmony Hill, Fieldstone Lane, etc
• Discussion ensued about the hydrant fee revenue. Al Strasser again discussed putting a warrant article forth to distinguish how both the municipal and Rosebrook Water would be allowed to use the money. Karen Carew noted that the hydrant fee account is simply an expense account and it can be reclassified to more appropriately budget for what it is trying to account, such as supplies. Karen Moran reminded Al that Rosebrook is a regulated public utility and as such the town cannot dictate how money is used. Further discussion took place
• Billy then discussed that repairs are normally based on what he has in stock, but there are road with 2” lines that should be replaced for 6” at least for fire hydrant pressure
• Discussion then ensued regarding ability to move money between line items as long as budget overall is not exceeded

Billy then left the meeting to attend the Bridge committee meeting also taking place.

Karen Carew addressed the committee with the following issues:
• Town appears to be too quick to establish special revenue funds
• Department heads appear concerned about “their own” funds and expenses
• Linda suggested that concern is based on historically losing track of funds, and will only be changed when the accounting trust is established.
• Funds can be properly accounted using general fund cash sub accounting
• Wording of the recycling warrant article is incorrect, saying grant money cannot be put into a special revenue fund, rather must go into the general fund.
• Ken suggested that transparency to the public is important
• Karen C then discussed the financial statement presentation using GASB (Government Accounting Standards Board) 34, inclusion of fixed assets and long term liabilities, etc.
• Karen M asked about net posting of grant money and expenses and was told that was how it was done in the past, will not be done in the future
• Linda noted that in the past warrant articles were written by her (after drafted by others) to ensure they complied with DRA rules etc. She is not sure they are proper for 2007; would it be reasonable to review and send back to the selectmen for revision? Karen C said yes.
• Tom asked about the paving warrant article vs. including it in the budget. Discussion ensued about the budget being a credible representation of what it costs to run the town
• Claire Gritzer noted how important a Capital Improvement Plan is. All agreed
• Ken asked if there is a source for writing warrant articles properly, and Karen C suggested reviewing large municipalities’ town reports such as Concord. They are online.
• Karen C then discussed setting an appropriate capitalization policy. Carroll has $5,000 but she also indicated the need for an accurate inventory system. For example, the fire department radios are approximately $2,000 each, which individually would not be capitalized, but with approximately $50,000 worth of radios, would be. Uniforms, as a general rule, are not considered capital items, despite their costs

Bonnie arrived from the Bridge Committee meeting at 8:55

• Linda noted that we do not have the final selectmen’s warrant articles
• Bonnie said that Sue does not have them compiled a/o today
• Tom indicated we need to have them for December 5
• Bonnie said we have to post the notice seven days in advance of a public hearing, so it is already too late for the 12/5 hearing
• Linda will notice the Currier for a public hearing for December 12, 2006 to review the warrant articles and budget
• The meeting on 12/5 will be simply the budget committee reviewing the warrant articles that we have so far and the budgets as we understand them

Tom motioned to adjourn, Carmine seconded, all in favor.

Next meeting will be held Tuesday December 5, 2006 at 7pm at the town hall.

Chair closed the meeting at 9:04.

Respectfully submitted,
Karen Moran, Secretary