Selectboard update on litigations, fraud risk and Lake Champlain

File photo

The Selectboard meeting of March 27 was relatively short and sweet. It began with the decision to engage the firm of Murphy, Sullivan and Kronk to represent the town with other lakeside municipalities in the continuing litigation over the tax implications of the TDI New England submarine power cable in Lake Champlain. The board also set the date for advance opening of the town mowing and brush-hogging bids for March 31. Formal bid opening and letting contracts will occur at the next regular Selectboard meeting on April 10. The advanced opening will enable Dean Bloch to perform an analysis of each bid to help standardize the terms that will enable the board to make an informed decision.

The board has set itself a goal of establishing a fraud risk assessment process in accordance with the contracted auditors’ recommendations. It authorized Sullivan Powers & Co., the town’s contract auditors, to work with the elected auditors to facilitate the assessment and produce a report for an amount not to exceed $1,000.

The Lake Champlain Conservation Committee (LCC) requested and received permission to include the Town Beach as a Lake Champlain Paddlers’ Trail day site and to include it in the Trail Guidebook. Copies of the guidebook may be obtained by visiting the LCC website at or calling (802) 658-1414.

In a spate of appointments and reappointments, the following persons were approved to town entities:

  • John Quinney to the Energy Committee for the term ending April 30, 2018,
  • Greg Smith to the Charlotte Park and Wildlife Sanctuary Committee for an indefinite term,
  • Laurie Thompson and Stephanie Hasse reappointed to the Trails Committee for terms ending April 30, 2019,
  • Susan Blood reappointed to the Conservation Commission for the term ending April 30, 2021,
  • Ken Spenser and Kim Findley appointed for a one-year term as Vermont Green-up Day coordinators (May 6).

Mark Dillenbeck was also reappointed as tree warden for a one-year term. Shortly following his reappointment, the Selectboard went on to proclaim May 5, 2017, as Arbor Day, during which another tree will be planted at the Charlotte Central School.

Of general interest, the Selectboard briefly reviewed its extensive work plan for the year and the list of contracts that will come due, needing their attention. The next regular Selectboard meeting will be held on April 10, during which the town clerk’s salary plan for the future will be considered for final approval. There will also be a public informational meeting on the budget-related articles to be voted by Australian ballot on April 11 in accordance with the new Town Charter.