Chea Waters Evans, Editor
A special Selectboard meeting on March 4 and a regularly scheduled one on March 8 got the new board off to a spring, already violating Chair Matt Krasnow’s vow that he would try to keep the meetings to two a month—and with another special meeting scheduled for next Tuesday, it looks like weekly meetings are on the calendar for the near future at the very least.
March 4 kicked off with an immediate motion by Louise McCarren to re-appoint Krasnow and Vice Chair Frank Tenney to their positions for the coming year. Krasnow said he would “do better this year at keeping meetings on time, and limiting to twice a month “as much as humanly possible.” A little sparkle of hope winked through at various points during the meeting; the Selectboard, in making plans for the future, discussed in-person municipal meetings and possibly gathering once more as a citizenry on Town Meeting Day.
While approving the rules for order, a yearly practice, McCarren said that while she thinks Krasnow does a good job of keeping people in line already, she wants to make sure that a focus remains and that “order and decorum be maintained,” saying that during her time she has witnessed “difficult and unpolite interactions, either among people in the audience or between people in the audience and a board member…We really need to not have that happen—it’s really destructive and not helpful.”
The Charlotte News was once again designated the newspaper of record, with The Citizen and Seven Days serving as backup in case the paper’s biweekly schedule doesn’t provide an adequate warning time for certain legal notices. The board also agreed to post notices on Front Porch Forum as often as possible.
The Selectboard choses members to act as liaisons between the board and other town boards, commissions, and committees. Their role is to act as the go-between and point person. This year’s liaisons are as follows: Krasnow and McCarren, Vermont State Police; McCarren, Senior Center, Recreation Committee, and library; Jim Faulkner, town lands, planning and zoning, CVFRS, the sand shed committee, the road commissioner, Trails Committee, and Thompson’s Point wastewater; new member Lewis Mudge Conservation Commission and Energy Committee; Tenney will remain on road commissioner, sand shed, planning and zoning, and town lands; and Krasnow will remain with the park and wildlife refuge.
Joking that his math skills had been honed by a fear of noogies from Mrs. Lafayette, the woman who taught math to most Charlotters of a certain generation with light corporal punishment before that wasn’t okay in schools, Krasnow pointed out there was a discrepancy between the cumulative budget amount printed in the town report and the amount printed on the ballot. The warning had the budget at $3,475,774 and the ballot read $3,457,774. The number printed on the ballot was incorrect; state law allows the votes to stand from Town Meeting Day if the change was inadvertent and accidental.
The town hired Gallagher Flynn to analyze town employee salaries and the method by which those are determined; library salaries are the most recent impetus for a potential change, but last fall’s departure of the assistant town clerk and treasurer and hiring of her replacement prompted the Selectboard to recognize that it’s time to reevaluate the situation. On Tuesday March 16 at 7:00 p.m. they will have a public meeting to discuss the issue with town employees.
Zoning Administrator (ZA)
The candidate who was previously being considered for the ZA position withdrew their application; Town Administrator Dean Bloch said that the town increased their reach when advertising the position around the state and said, “We do have several applicants,” and noted that interviews will begin shortly.