Select Board Meeting Minutes 03/12/2019

Town of Otis

Select Board Meeting Minutes

March 12, 2019


Call to Order:  Meeting called to order at 7:02 p.m. in the Town Hall conference room.  A quorum is present and the meeting is being recorded.


Select Board Members:          Chairman Don Hawley, Bill Hiller, Gary Thomas


Others Present:           Town Administrator Rebecca Stone, Town Counsel Jeremia Pollard, Larry Gould, Stephanie McNair, Tom Gecewicz, Michael Ernst, David Reiner, Sam Marks, John Sacenti, Charles Ferris, Peter Puciloski, Saj Khan, Arturo Moulepara, Sonia Morrison, Diane Provenz, Bryan Walensky


Approval of Minutes:  The February 26, 2019 Select Board meeting minutes, the February 25, 2019 All Boards meeting minutes, and the February 6, 2019 Interview minutes were approved unanimously as written.


Community Health Associates:  The marijuana entity has a new group of principals and has renamed itself to Turning Leaf Centers Otis, LLC.  A majority of the principals were present and are ready to have their Community Outreach Meeting in the Town Hall gymnasium at 2:00 pm on March 30, 2019.  They plan to advertise this in the Berkshire Eagle and when we receive notice, we will post on our website and send out robocalls for this meeting.  Don noted the two biggest concerns brought up were smell and water contamination.

Tom introduced several of the principals in attendance, who each spoke for their group.  Peter Puciloski was introduced as their local attorney and he and Jeremia went back and forth about some of the fine points of the Host Agreement.  Mr. Puciloski is proposing the first Host Agreement (of many) be strictly for agricultural growth, but both Jeremia and the Building Inspector argued that the growth facility would still need to be zoned light industrial to proceed with that alone.  Jeremia is not certain that Chapter 40A Section 3 has been amended enough to no longer include marijuana agricultural growth as light industrial.  Larry argued that marijuana agricultural growth is so regulated that it is still considered light industrial.  TLCO, LLC will definitely need a zoning special permit to change its preferred location to light industrial zoning.  Right now, the big question is: does marijuana cultivation require agricultural or light industrial classification.  The answer to that question will affect the wording in the Host Community Agreement.  Jeremia needs to see what they are actually applying for in order to complete the Host Agreement wording.


Schedule Staff Meeting:  Most employees have heard rumors we are going to biweekly payroll and wanted to know when the Select Board was going to talk with them about this.  Don noted he really had not heard about this but wanted to discuss this with Karen.  Larry noted we just wanted to know what was happening and when the Select Board has information, we employees would like to meet with them.  This will remain on hold until the Select Board has more information on this topic.



Other Business:

Caucus Call:  Lyn O’Brien requested the Select Board sign the official Caucus Call.  All three selectmen reviewed the document and signed it.


Planning Board:  Michael let the Select Board know he was resigning from the Planning Board at the end of May.



The Select Board meeting was unanimously adjourned at 8:30 p.m.


Respectfully Submitted,

Lisa D’Orazio

Selectmen’s Secretary

Town of Otis


List of Documents


  1. A copy of the “Americans For Safe Access” letter from the Turning Leaf Centers Otis, LLC will be filed with these meeting minutes.


  1. A copy of the petition, signature page, and August 26, 2013 Select Board meeting minutes will be filed with these meeting minutes.


  1. A copy of the signed Caucus Call will be filed with these meeting minutes.