Select Board Meeting Minutes 08/28/2018

Town of Otis

Select Board Meeting Minutes

August 28, 2018


Meeting called to order at 7:00 pm in the Town Hall conference room.  It’s being recorded and a quorum is present.


Present:           Select Board Chair Don Hawley, Selectman Bill Hiller, Selectman Gary Thomas, Town Administrator Becky Stone, Michael O’Brien, Jim Wilusz, Chris Tryon, Russ Loring, Lisa D’Orazio


The Select Board was opened at 5:35 pm and was immediately brought into Executive Session by role call vote for purposes of discussing litigation.  The Select Board meeting was brought out of Executive Session by role call vote at 6:40 pm and was resumed at 7:00 pm due to the fact that abutters of 17 Elm Lane were notified of that time for the Board of Health variance hearing.



Approval of Minutes:  The August 14, 2018 Select Board meeting minutes were unanimously approved as amended.


Board of Health:  17 Elm Lane:  This is an existing dwelling for Bob Bailey.  This is another tight lot that has maximum constraints.  This requires well variances.  One abutter’s well is beyond the 100 foot circumference, but the other abutter’s well is at 92.8 feet.  The owner’s well is located 67.5 feet.  They are requesting a 43% reduction in leach field size.  A microfast system has been designed with H20 heavy duty chambers under the parking area because there is no other place to locate them.  The conditions for this are the same standard for the jetbat systems with maintenance in perpetuity.  The Select Board unanimously approved the plan with the conditions.

Compliance with Contractors:  Jim mentioned that the existing Mass. Laws handle recommendations for Title 5 violations and fines and Otis can use these as guidelines.  Tri-Town itself does not have any guidance documents, but Jim offered to draft an enforcement piece to the town’s current Title 5 and Well procedures based upon these recommendations and the Select Board will have the option to modify and/or adjust anything they need.  The Select Board unanimously agreed to have Jim draft this enforcement document.

Tobacco Collaborative Consortium:  Otis is part of the tobacco consortium and Otis has old outdated regulations in place.  Jim would like to draft updated regulations for Otis and have them available for Select Board review before the end of the year.  The Select Board unanimously agreed to have Jim do this for them.


Berkshire Trail Riders Association:  Once again the Trail Riders would like to have a charity ride through our town on September 16, 2018.  This has not been a problem in the past and the Select Board unanimously voted to have them ride again this year.  Police, Fire, and Rescue have already been notified.







Broadband:  Bill announced that Blandford and Otis have reached an agreement where Blandford will pay for the broadband installation around the reservoir area and will use Otis’ East Otis broadband hub.  Westfield will bill Blandford customers directly and Otis will bill Blandford for hub usage.


Certified Flaggers:  The Police Dept. has not always had personnel to fill Road Detail duties for the broadband construction in town.  It is costly to send them back because we have no flaggers to assign to them.  Bill is asking the Select Board to approve use of certified flaggers for the broadband construction when Police are not available for the details.  Don and Gary both approved this request, with Bill abstaining.  Certified flaggers are available through a private company and interested residents can also become certified.


Safety Committee:  Becky would like to add Keith to the committee.  Derek and Jim attended a workshop for the new OSHA requirements and there are WWTP processes that will be affected by the new requirements.  The Select Board unanimously approved this request.  The Safety Committee will be meeting with our insurance carrier in September.


Recreational Marijuana:  Any moratorium request MUST be voted upon at a Town Meeting.


Robo Calls:  Weekend coverage is not always available, so Becky would like to have a few others added to the user list and trained on proper use of the system.


Westfield Broadband Meeting:  Don announced that Bill was one of four Western Mass. people invited to meet with Governor Charlie Baker in Westfield regarding Broadband.  Bill reported that the Governor was pleased with the progress Otis has made and discussed potential problems as well.



The Select Board unanimously adjourned the meeting at 7:32 pm.


Respectfully Submitted,

Lisa D’Orazio

Selectmen’s Secretary, Town of Otis



List of Documents


  1. A copy of the Berkshire Trail Riders Courtesy Notice will be filed with these meeting minutes.