MINUTES OF THE SELECTMEN’S MEETING

WITH THE BIT EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE PARTICIPATING

 

TOWN OF FRYE ISLAND

DECEMBER 14, 2006

 

The meeting was conducted by teleconference.

 

The meeting was called to order at 7:03 PM by John Nun.

 

SELECTMEN:  John Nun, Brian Walker, Grace Morin (after appointment below).

 

BIT EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE:  Bruce Nisula absent, Joe Potts, Debbie Anthony, Bob Miner, John Nun, Brian Walker.

 

TOWN MANAGER:  Wayne Fournier

 

TREASURER:  Carl Hommel – absent

 

APPOINTMENT OF SELECTMAN

 

Grace Morin was appointed as Selectman to fill the seat vacated by James Kuiken until a Selectman can be elected at the next town meeting – Unanimous.  Grace was welcomed by the members and participated in the remainder of the meeting.

 

Petitions from the Public

 

None

 

OLD BUSINESS

 

Ferry Ramp Repairs:

 

Wayne reported that repairs were almost complete; that water levels were too high and delayed finishing the grout.  He had been told by Tom Howard, SAPPI, that there were water release limits during the spawning run which began 1 November.  Grout is now finished.  The weights on the island side were removed.  Roger Gagnon looked at the island side on Tuesday, 12 Dec; it was working well.  Roger’s bill has not yet been paid.  Wayne asked about the island side apron; Roger indicated that the Bancroft price was excessive; he was getting quotes from 3 contractors, including Cianbro indicated interest.  Depending on cost, Roger will fabricate over the winter and install in the spring.  Sheaves on island side done like mainland side.

 

Island Ramp: 

 

Wayne reported concrete and hinges replaced; relocated hoist-to-ramp pad eyes, roller assembly to prevent ramp catching; new pullout winch; roller assembly (not part of ramp) to prevent ramp catching; replaced hold-down cable on outboard end; on watch list.

 

Frye Island vs. State of Maine Update:

 

Wayne reported that all written draft rebuttals were submitted in September but still no date has been set by the court for oral arguments.

 

Gorham Savings Bank:

 

Wayne reported that transition is falling into place:  Accounts are set up, deposits are being set up, credit cards are in progress.  Joe asked about Gorham Savings Insurance (we have >$1M); Wayne indicated that we are insured up to 110% of deposits.  Is it FDIC insured?  If not, who?  Wayne agreed to look into this further and get answers in writing.

 

Toomey Appeal:

 

Wayne reported that the appeal has been presented to the court.  Single judge said he would give an opinion in writing – no response yet.  The judge appeared to question the Appeals Board process and timing more than the rationale itself.  Wayne talked to the town attorney on 14 December; he recommended that, in the future, documentation should be forwarded to the town CEO and the town should have a real estate qualified attorney present.

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

Long Beach Marina Dredging:

 

Wayne reported that the Long Beach Marina was dredged 4-5 years ago under a DEP Permit by Rule.  It turns out that was a one-time permit and we must now go back to the full permit process for re-dredging.  Wayne contacted the original developer and DEP to set up a 27 December meeting to discuss requirements.  Joe asked if Reserve Funds were available to do the marina dredging; Wayne responded that the marina Equity Reserve should be appropriate and adequate.

 

The same requirements would apply if we need to dredge the mainland ferry channel.  A related issue is that it has been observed, during recent repairs, that the island ferry ramp and gantry is showing stress that could possibly be relieved by a breakwater.  There would be issues related to the approval process and possible impact on access to the ferry pull-out and adjacent boat ramp.

 

Bob questioned the possibility of reversing the direction of ferry operations at the landings if dredging could allow back-in operations on the mainland and reduce landing stresses on the ramp with forward-in operations on the island.  Wayne said he was not sure how much that would help; that the mainland ramp lowering limits may be the limiting factor.  The  I-beam was lowered once but there may be difficulties in lowering it further to take advantage of more depth.  Wayne agreed to look further into the issue.

 

Credit Card Approvals:

 

The Board authorized Wayne, in his capacity as Town Manager to sign the Gorham Savings Bank Credit Card Guaranty and to issue credit cards to the following employees.

 

1.     Wayne Fournier, in the credit limit amounts not to exceed $ 2000.00

 

2.     John Crosby, in the credit limit amount not to exceed $2000.00

 

3.     Laura Crosby, in the credit limit amount not to exceed $2500.00

 

4.     James Hodge, in the credit limit amount not to exceed $2000.00

 

Ferry Ticket Policy:

 

John Nun had drafted a policy that would eliminate remuneration of various board members with ferry tickets.  Joe Potts countered that remuneration for board members had been instituted by MSC with voter approval.  After discussion it was agreed that John would re-draft the policy and retain the original remuneration policy, that changes would be considered if the issue were to be raised again before the town. 

 

Town Audit:

 

Joe initiated a discussion concerning difficulties with the town audit.  The audits are received very late and are difficult to decipher sometimes.  He asked if Wayne was doing anything to get a new auditor or sticking with the current auditor.  Wayne indicated that the current (FY06) audit is winding down and he would not be comfortable changing at this time.  Joe asked if we could give completion deadlines or find somebody else.  Wayne indicated that neither was doable by end of March.  Joe disagreed and asked that Wayne talk to the current auditor to try to get them to give us some consideration this year and not close the issue without some positive resolution for the future.

 

Information Release:

 

Joe requested that Wayne not include a copy of the audit nor the Town Report in the Town Newsletter (too lengthy and complex and costly in terms of postage) but, instead, provide an electronic version to Joe for posting on the Town web site and indicate in the Newsletter where these are posted on the web.  All agreed.

 

REVIEW and APPROVALS

 

Meeting Minutes

 

John to correct draft of 20 October meeting minutes for approval next meeting.

 

 

October/November Financials

 

Wayne presented October and November financials.  Revenues were slightly down – approximately $8-9K, due mostly to the way we budget ferry administrative personnel in management fees.

 

Joe asked if we had a handle on what goes to the Fund Balance?  Wayne responded – close to $150K; some was earmarked, $20K to administration, etc.  Wayne said that he would have that all worked out prior to 1 Jan 07.

 

Wayne stated that ferries had saved on labor which offset some of the losses in revenues and that he had only taken about half the heavy equipment expenses yet.  Contractor and heavy equipment traffic were down significantly.  Only one modular home was transported vs four last year.  He had moved $31K to Island Reserve out of $75K budgeted as of October.  We changed fuel suppliers and cut costs putting $15-20K into Ferry Operations Reserve.  Some of the ferry expenses to date have been taken out of Ferry Capital and need to be shifted to Ferry Operations Reserve.

           

Debbie asked how TRIO was working.  Wayne indicated no action required at this point; that Calvin deals with it and is doing OK

 

Wayne reported that beavers were back; that traps were put out 14 December.

 

MOTION to adjourn at 8:49 PM made by John Nun, seconded by Brian Walker – Unanimous

 

 

Respectfully submitted,

John B. Nun