BOS - January 3, 2006

BOS - January 3, 2006

Postby Suzanne Kane » Wed Dec 28, 2005 1:49 pm

Board of Selectmen
January 3, 2006

6:30 pm
• Informational Workshop

7:00 pm
1. Call to Order

2. Chairman’s Announcements

3. Citizen’s Forum

7:15 pm
4. Pole Petition – P05-87

5. Town Use – Senior Center

6. Traffic Issues

7. Minutes: September 27, 2005, October 4, 2005

8. Administrators Report

9. Old / New Business

10. Executive Session - Litigation

11 Adjournment
Future Agenda Items:
January 17th:
7:15 pm – NPDES (William Cundiff)

TBD: Audit w/School, Library 5 year plan, EDC (after the Holidays), TIP Policy and Fire Inspection Policy

Douglas Board of Selectmen
Meeting Minutes
January 3, 2006
Approved August 1, 2006

 Informational Workshop:

Madam Chair Shirley Mosczynski called the workshop meeting to order at 6:43 pm in the Municipal Center.
In attendance: Paula Brouillette-Vice Chair, Richard Preston, Executive Administrator Michael Guzinski and Administrative Assistant Suzanne Kane. Absent – David Furno.

Mike Guzinski discussed the following at the workshop:
- Letter of support 40 ‘B’ (consensus of the Board to sign)
- Letter on Winter Street (consensus of the Board to sign)
- Post Office update
- Meeting with School and FinCOM
- DPW Workshop-next week
- Traffic Information
- “Laundry List” Information
- Signs for Cook Street
Adjourn – 6:56 pm.

1. Call to Order:
Madam Chair Shirley Mosczynski called the meeting to order at 7:05 pm.
In attendance: Paula Brouillette-Vice Chair, Rich Preston, Executive Administrator Michael Guzinski and Administrative Assistant Suzanne Kane.
Others present: Police Chief Patrick Foley, Roger Martinsen-National Grid Rep.
T&G Reporter - Steve Foskett, Tribune Reporter -Tom Mattson. Absent – David Furno.

2. Chair Announcements: - Letter from Dr. Michael Fitzpatrick, Superintendent/Director of the Blackstone Valley Vocational Regional School District (read by Shirley): Fowarded the first of three rebate checks to our Town Treasurer relating to the Valley Tech. expansion and renovation project.

3. Citizen’s Forum: No one came forward.

4. Pole Petition Hearing 7:15 pm-Shirley read the petition for Southeast Main St. P05-87 Mass Electric and Verizon: Roger Martinsen explained the necessity of 8 new poles needed to service 4 new house lots.
Motion – Rich Preston made a motion to close the hearing at 7:20 pm.
Seconded - Paula Brouillette. All - aye.
Motion – Rich Preston made a motion to approve as presented.
Seconded - Paula Brouillette. All - aye.

5. Town Use:
Senior Center – Family Birthday Party:
January 7th from 2-4 pm.
Motion - Paula Brouillette approve as presented. Seconded – Rich Preston. All - aye.

6. Traffic: Handouts - Rich had previously requested Mike get info regarding traffic and safety issues. Mike thanked Chief Foley and Lt. Gilbert for their help in retrieving this information. Rich also thanked the Chief for attending their meeting, being the department is short handed, and then read his memo regarding public safety, vehicular issues and citations/warnings issued with locations noting: Webster St-547, Main-339, Davis-250, Gilboa-219, SW Main-189, SE Main-182 and goes down dramatically from there. I hope to continue to have discussions about unsafe roadways and intersections. Steve Zisk made a map (showing in red) the two volatile areas both in speeding and accidents-Webster and Main with Davis and SW Main right behind. We have a lot of pressure on Route 16 which is the main artery through Town and a lot of people are in a hurry. I had suggested putting signs in the middle of Main Street, however it’s narrow and it was decided they be put on each side of the sidewalk at both sides of the crosswalk, to be very visible and reviewed. Statistical data of vehicle count taken from late ‘80’s to a few years ago there’s a 25% increase. We have a very pro-active Police Department and their visibility does act as a preventative measure and would be interested in revisiting this on a regular basis, identifying, talking about problems and potential solutions.
Chief Foley- Indicating on the map-all new developments are going out from Main and West Streets. In checking with neighboring states-Connecticut and Rhode Island-they’ve seen over the last 2-3 years incredible growth in their northern parts where the down town area of Douglas is the bottom of the funnel. Webster St. is a straight away-a race way, you can increase your speed and not deal with a lot traffic until the intersection of Main and Webster, then it becomes bumper to bumper. We noticed people are in a hurry, especially downtown where our biggest concern is the educational facility. There’s a big back up with parents picking up and dropping off their children and for every house built we’re adding 2 more cars. People are coming through Douglas as a bypass with the access of the Mass Pike, 146 Interchange and new development in Worcester. I agree we can stop a lot more people from creating motor vehicle infractions by being very visible. Citations vs warnings, I think it’s a 65-35 split and fines are really high so the speed is really high-estimated speed is 13-15 over the posted speed limit. We have a standing order of about 12 streets on a daily basis that people want traffic enforcement on. Some days we run on short shifts, we try to maintain a minimum of at least 3 officers per shift. We’ve had very little pedestrian accidents; the majority is single vehicle accidents. We need to look at the designs of the roads; they were built many years ago for smaller vehicles. Maybe redesign one road a year, trying to utilize grants, putting extra bodies out there when we can and their responsibility is do motor vehicle enforcing which is left up to the discretion of the supervisors and officers what street will be monitored on different days/nights and times. If complaints have been made we try to target those areas. Rich – Thanked Chief Foley and stated he’s not critiquing the Police Department, the number of citations issued, very dramatic 100% increase over second busy road and understands being short handed. I would say Main and Webster St. do need more coverage than some because of the statistics but don’t agree with your policy in terms of coverage on that regard. I would argue you encourage your people to monitor where the trouble spots are. Chief Foley – Statistics show we do target Webster St. far more than any other street. Rich – If you feel you can not adequately cover these roads, that should be something made very clear to us so we can support you even further in terms of staffing and cruisers. Ultimately we’re trying to avoid problems and fatalities here.
Chief Foley – My philosophy is, I’ve been doing this job 30 years, and a chief almost 19 years, I believe officers should be very visible, patrol the areas and make sure they’re safe. Once they’ve covered their sector, then motor vehicle should be the last thing they do. Officers know traffic enforcement is a big thing and not just limited to speeding violations. We should be up to 15 full time officers excluding me. Rich – I would be very happy to utilize and see the speed trailer out more and would appreciate any suggestions you have to obtaining/utilizing equipment rather than tying up an officer and cruiser. Chief Foley – I will convey your concerns to the troops and see if we can generate more activity in that area. The trailers are helpful and when we go over the budget, we’ll see if that’s one of the items we can go after. Manpower is needed first and that’s why we went to dual radar systems in the cruisers. Rich – I would ask the Board to consider a quarterly meeting on traffic safety. Chief Foley – I would encourage you all to come out some evening for an hour or two on any shift and ride with the troops to get the hands on experience. Paula – Understands Rich’s concerns and agrees with a lot of them, but I also think one of the conditions is how many cars travel the road, what is the visibility or density of the road? The density and population of Webster Rd is a lot different than down town. In attending a lot of the CMRPC (Central Mass Regional Planning) meetings, traffic and patterns is a big consideration in central Mass. There are not good ways to get east – west between 395 and 146 and I will bring this up at the meetings.
Shirley – Asked Chief Foley what the comparison is of Central Turnpike in Sutton? Are they experiencing the same type of thing from 395 to 146 and although it’s more rural, they don’t have a down town like we do? He will contact Chief Hebert regarding their traffic count and commented that their roads are wider and able to handle more volume but they are straight aways. Shirley – In the summer time, because of the lakes and recreational things going on in this community, that brings more people in and puts more on the Force. Chief Foley – We figured the population increases at least five thousand. On 4th of July weekend at Wallum Lake, by 9:00 am we have close to three thousand people in that park. Shirley – And you have the same staff, or some on vacation. I am concerned with the number of accidents on Main Street, where are the crosswalks and are they where they should be? One concern is by Gregory’s. We should have the Safety Committee look at this again. Chief Foley – There is “No Parking” painted in the asphalt and we did discuss possibly relocating that one down further in front of the XtraMart. John (Interim Highway Superintendent) has ordered more signs and we’re trying to be creative in placing them. Do we have too many crosswalks? You brought up about 3 years ago the proper width and designs of a crosswalk. As we get closer to warmer weather we’ll bring them up to code. Shirley – I’d like to see the Safety Committee, if the Board concurs, look at those crosswalks, where they are and come back and let us know what your recommendations are. Chief Foley – It has previously been on the Safety Committee’s agenda. Rich – You (Police Department) are the front line in public safety and looking for input from you regarding road safety. Whatever we can do as a Board to help you, let us know, so we can continue to be supportive. Accidents and citations on Webster Street go up in the winter and up on Main Street in the summer. Chief Foley – They go up in winter on Webster Street because it’s the coldest area in Town that freezes first. I think looking at the growth of the trees and start trimming them back, the sun does not get on the road to warm and dry it up. Shirley – The visibility on Webster Street is very bad during bad weather. Chief Foley – On Southwest Main Street going into Thompson Ct., where most of accidents occur, it’s narrow, very densely populated and the road freezes quickly. We can’t do much there because the way the road is designed. Shirley – The past two storms the Highway Department has been out there sanding and they are in good shape and hopefully will continue because we’re concerned about the safety.
There will be a follow up meeting after the next Safety Committee meets and bring back their recommendations. We’ll try to set up a meeting quarterly or every so many months.

7. Minutes:
- September 27, 2005 - Motion - Paula Brouillette
made a motion to approve the meeting minutes as presented. Seconded - Rich Preston. All – aye.
- October 4, 2005 – Motion - Paula Brouillette made a motion to approve the meeting minutes as presented. Seconded - Rich Preston. All – aye.

8. Administrators Report: Post Office Renovation Project – Moving along well and would have been finished 2-3 weeks ago had the weather co-operated The roof is complete-3 layers taken off and replaced with 50 year architectural shingles, the new gutters are on, the chimney and part of the cupola has been repaired and anti-icing cables need to be installed in the gutters. Thanks to Rick Colonero for the work he’s done. Any unfinished work will be completed when the weather breaks in the spring. Paula – They did an excellent job, especially considering it’s a high traffic area.
Rich – Happy to see that we’re making some capital investment in these buildings, we have the funds available to do that and look forward to more of it in the future.
Shirley – I believe it came under what was projected.

9. Old / New Business:
OLD-School Use of Municipal Center: Rich-
asked Mike for any thoughts or comments from the Interim Superintendent (Bob Melican), looking at this building and in terms of its usefulness as a future school facility. Mike – Nothing officially in writing. He did see a lot of potential for the younger grades and possibly take the pressure off the older grades as far as space needs. Mr. Melican planned to check with the School Committee and will get back to Mike.

NEW-NPDES Information & Policy – Shirley: Under future agenda items, there is a packet of information in the office on the desk for review and Bill Cundiff will be discussing on the 17th (January), because we need to approve a bylaw. Mike – The Town has to establish this bylaw by 2007.
Budget Packets: Out to all Departments, Boards and Committees before Christmas and requested to have them returned by next Monday (January 9th).

10. Executive Session:
Shirley –
I would like to entertain a motion to go into Executive Session for the purpose of Litigation at 8:15 pm and to come out of Executive Session for the purpose of adjournment. Rich Preston – So moved. Seconded - Paula Brouillette.
Roll call vote - Paula Brouillette-aye, Richard Preston-aye, Shirley Mosczynski-aye,

11. Adjournment – Motion - Paula Brouillette made a motion to adjourn at 8:35 pm.
Seconded – Rich Preston. All – aye.

Respectfully submitted,

Jane L. Alger, Administrative Secretary
Suzanne Kane
Posts: 661
Joined: Wed May 25, 2005 2:01 pm

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