Chebeague Island Transition Committee Meeting
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Present: John Martin, Mark Dyer, Stephen Todd, Leon Hamilton, Donna Damon, Carol White, Doug Ross, and David Hill.
Also present were guest Ron Grenier, Town Administrator-elect, four members of the public and an acting secretary.
1. The Chair called the meeting of the Transition Committee (TC) to order at 7:14 pm in the Parish House. The minutes of the 4/4/07 and 4/11/07 meetings were approved as written. (Hill/Damon).
2. Questions & comments from the Public:
David Hill welcomed Ron Grenier, our all-but confirmed Town Administrator (TA).
Cheryl Buxbaum: What is PROP planning to charge to administer general assistance?
John: Although the subcommittee recommended that PROP administer General Assistance, the TC decided to give the job to the TA rather than to PROP. Brief discussion of the process that led to this decision and question (Mark) of how confidentiality is to be kept.
Cheryl Buxbaum: ³Sunday (s Meeting) was well done.²
3. Old Business:
Donna: We have selected the TA. Still looking for a Clerk.
Carol: Still looking for and recruiting for positions. Received advice from
NH and VT re hiring superintendent: Donıt hurry in hiring. Wait for the right one. By next week we will have finalists for a number of positions including 10-12 teacher candidates. It would be ideal for the (yet to be hired) superintendent to help in hiring the teachers. Two members of the Education Subcommittee (Jerry Wiles and Phil Jordan) will join the members of the TC in interviewing.
John: Education Subcommittee may go ahead in the process of hiring
teachers but the TC wants a say in hiring the superintendent.
Discussion: All ³contracts² to TC as a ³memorandum of understanding.²
Carol White: What is the benefits package?
David Hill: Will send it to Carol.
MOTION: (Donna/Leon) In order to move forward with the process of
hiring superintendent and teachers, ³The TC authorizes the Education Subcommittee to proceed with the hiring process and to bring back memoranda of understanding for positions below superintendent.² PASSED.
Mark: We need to push the rest of the municipal hiring process. Some
folks are wondering what s going on.
Donna: Who will set up the interviews?
John: Chairs will do it.
Carol: Wants to be excused from the interviews conducted by the other
Donna: Must have five interviewers.
B. Elections prior to the first Town Meeting: John quoted the 4/15/07 TC
decision to have elections prior to the first Town Meeting by quoting ³Selectmen and School Board Elections – 6/16/07 @ 6pm with doors opening at 5pm.² Donna reported that the Whalers have reserved the Hall that evening for a concert. Carol will call Martha Hamilton and John Howard requesting that they change the date of the concert and will report back to the TC.
C. Budget Workshop of 4/22:
What did we learn?
Carol: need more public participation
David: useful - we picked up a few glitches and got good feed-back re the
Leon: need to identify ways to cut the budget.
John: do we need a TC meeting to do this?
Donna: We plan to look at it again in mid-May after some of the hires.
Leon: letıs make all the cuts we can.
Mark: do we need a second workshop? Agrees with Donna.
David: how do we learn from people that we are spending too much on a line item?
John: When shall we have a budget workshop for the TC? Shall we open it to the public?
Carol: School Budget needs adequate time in the workshop.
Ron Grenier: Suggest have one of the two (municipal & school) workshops in the AM and one in the PM.
Mark: The TC needs to work on the municipal budget.
Discussion: with conclusion that the TC will have two workshops on the budget (one for school; one for municipal) open to the public on Tuesday May 15 @ 6pm and on Thursday May 17 @ 6pm and will hold a working presentation at the Hall on Sunday June 3 @ 1pm.
Carol: need to mail a card announcing.
Ron: make sure draft budget gets to community in plenty of time for them to peruse it prior to the Sunday meeting.
Mark: Letıs consider the Education Budget first.
Ron: put the announcement on the website?
D. Articles or Ordinances (a follow up from Peter Lowe)
Donna handed out a two-page ³Memorandum of Law² from Kevin Beal on ³Articles & Ordinances² the gist of which is that articles are good for a year and an ordinance is good until it is changed. Ordinances eliminate the need to pass the same articles every year. The Governance Committee suggests that that we place an article before the first Town Meeting to create an advisory committee to draft ordinances to establish Standing Advisory Committees by January 1, 2008 for a vote in the July 2008 Town Meeting. She then led the TC through the recommendation of the Governance Subcommittee that we present articles on (1) a standing advisory committee, (2) Public Works, (3) Conservation, (4) Health, (5) Public Lands, and (6) Cemetery to the first Town Meeting. The idea is to get these committees underway in order to support the selectmen.
Discussion: (Lengthy!) about pros and cons, about tying the hands of the selectmen vs. helping them. Six participants. Mark made, and then withdrew a motion that we ask the Governance Subcommittee to create a simplified article to describe a way to authorize the selectmen to appoint committees after July 1, 2007 after Boopie reported that the selectmen already had that authority. After further discussion, the subject was tabled.
H. Long Island Workshop, status of
Carol talked with Mark Green and Nancy of Long Island. Their Town Meeting will be May 12 at 8am. We are invited to send a small delegation to observe. There will be some ³good² issues.
I. Updates from other Subcommittees:
Leon: the engine for the harbormasterıs boat is being evaluated and we have a back-up should it not be operable. Cost of either would be under $5,000.
Doug reported that the housing problem for the policeman has been overcome and there are four more opportunities.
F. Status of Planning Board & the Comprehensive Land Use Application was not presented due to Bethıs absence.
G. Boopie presented a six-page document from the Governance Subcomittee and reported that ³The Governance Structure Subcommittee recommends to the Transition Committee that the following portions of Cumberlandıs Charter with modification as noted be accepted and, following review and modifications by legal counsel as needed, that these be put before the voters for approval/rejection at the first town meeting.² They concern the specific powers, duties and responsibilities of the Selectmen and the Board of Selectmen over and above those in the Maine state statutes. We can use our own local definitions; if we donıt, we have to follow the Maine statutes. Most of these will be defined in the ordinances passed by the town. This document has been modified in part because Cumberland has a Town Manager and we will have a Board of Selectmen.
Boopie then led the TC through the following articles and sections. All were passed except for Article II c. #2 and Article II 3.c. that was tabled. Boopie recorded modifications suggested (and passed) by the TC.
Article II 1 Dyer/Hill
Article IV 1 Dyer/Hill
Article II 2 a&b Ross/Hill
c (except # 2) Hill/White
Article II 3a Hill/Martin
e & f Dyer/Hill
k,o,p,q,s,t ? / ?
The remaining articles were not considered.
The Chair adjourned the meeting at 11:07pm