Selectboard Meeting Minutes 05/11/2021

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Selectboard Meeting Minutes

Otis Town Hall

Conference Room

Tuesday, May 11, 2021, at 7:00 PM


This meeting is being conducted remotely through Zoom. You must check back within 24 hours of the start time for a link to join.

Pursuant to the Governor’s March 12, 2020 order suspending certain provisions of the Open Meeting Law, G.L. c. 30A, Sec 18, this meeting is being held via remote participation to the greatest extent possible. Every effort is being made to ensure that any member of the public may access the meeting in real time, via technological means. Agendas will be amended to show the link and participation code to access the meeting no sooner than 48 hours before. Recordings and/or draft proceedings of the meeting will be available on our website as soon as possible.


Topic: Selectboard Public Meeting,

Time: May 11, 2021 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)


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Attendance: Chair Bill Hiller, Gary Thomas, Brandi Page, Andrew Madden Masswildlife (Andrew Madden), Ann odonnell, ASL, Bill Sturges, Cathy’s iPhone, Cbouchard, Daniel Hamill, Dave Cleaveland, Dave Smith, David Vogel, Debra Case, Diane Provenz, Donna S, Donna Thomas, Doreen Hoddinott,, Elaine Downing Hunter (Elaine & Dan Hunter), Erika’s iPhone, Frank Tolopko (Otis Observer), Frankrizzo, Glenn Greenough, Heidi Johnstone, iPad, iPhone, james shirley, Janice, Janice Gallup Hills (Janice), Janna Deveny (iPad), Janna Millette, Jeff Tacke, Jeffrey Dressler, Jeffrey Lamanna, Jen Daily# LICSW she/her, Jim Crandall, John Covell, Kaitlin Gallup, Karen Robb, Katelyn Caffee, katherine wippert, keristucenski, Larry Gould, Lauren Harrison, Mike Sturges, Nick, Otis Observer, Pampace, Patricia Rizzo, Patricia Desmond, Phil Magovern, Ralph Huber, robt176, Shari Lamanna, Sonia (Town of Otis), Susan Brofman, Therese’s iPad, Tim, Walter Engels, William Hiller


Call to Order:

7:00 PM


Approval of Minutes:

Meeting minutes were tabled. Gary had not been able to access the drafts and Larry Southard was absent.


Letter to Reject Cell Tower RFP: Brandi read the draft letter aloud and the Board will be in to sign.


Tannery Road Layout: Bill opened the public hearing for the layout of Tannery Road as a public way. Abutters had been notified. Andrew Madden was in attendance from mass Wildlife. They own land at the end of Tannery Road and had questions about the end of the town layout. It was explained that the bridge project is being handled by Mass DOT and that the engineering and layout work was done relative to the project. The Town confirmed it will maintain Tannery Road exactly as it currently does. Bill made a motion to adopt the plans as shown, seconded, passed unanimously. Plans and mylars are ready for signature. The next step is approval of the warrant articles at upcoming town meeting.


Home Burial: The Board reviewed the request for a home burial at 2034 North Main Road. Bill made a motion to approve the burial with the following restrictions; submission and approval from Conservation Commission and the necessary filing of a deed restriction at the Registry. Motion seconded and passed.




Warden for ATM: Motion to appoint Anthony Middleton as Warden for the upcoming election on May 25th. Seconded and passed.


Fire Truck Bids: Bill read aloud the recommendation from the Fire Department in regard to the Fire Truck bids. Two of the companies did not meet the specs outlined in the bid. The recommendation is to award the bid to Bulldog pending town meeting approval of the borrowing. The price is quoted at $492,942.76 due at contract signing. Terry Gould mentioned we should communicate with Karen so we are able to meet that timeline. Motion to approve moving forward with Bulldog and amend the borrowing amount in the warrant article at town meeting. Seconded and passed.


Use of Town Hall for Private Events: Brandi stated we have had at least one inquiry for a private event so far. The best approach is probably to take these on a case by case basis for the time being. Guidance from the State is changing daily. Capacity limits are still in place and distancing must be observed. Motion made to allow use of the gym per current guidelines at the time of the event. Seconded and passed.


Diversity and Acceptance: Larry Gould, as a citizen, read a statement he had written as to what diversity means to him. There was discussion following thanking Larry for his statement and hopeful Otis moves forward in a positive direction and is a place welcoming and accepting to all.


Unanticipated: Diane and Sonia spoke about the work Historic has been doing and the upcoming “Notice Otis” event. They again asked people to vote no on the upcoming Citizen’s petition.


Brandi mentioned this is Bill’s last Select Board meeting and thanked him for all his time and help.


Bill made a statement about his years on the Board and all that had been accomplished. Some milestones were Otis was the first in Western Mass to build their own Broadband infrastructure. This couldn’t have been accomplished without Larry Gould, Maintenance and even community involvement. We were able to get a large grant and transition to a new financial software for the town and the school. This resulted in a significant financial savings. Bill has chosen not to run again for certain reasons. He thanked Larry Southard and Gary Thomas and said it had been a pleasure serving on the Board with them.


Gary thanked Bill for his years on the Board.


Review and Approval of Warrants:

On the Selectboard table for review and signing.



7:52 PM