TOWN COUNCIL MEETING

January 28, 2002

A regular meeting of the Jamestown Town Council was called to order at the Jamestown Philomenian Library, 26 North Road at 7:02 PM by Council President Guy J. Settipane. The following members were present:

David A. Swain, Vice President

David J. Long

Kenneth G. Littman

Norma B. Willis

Also present were:

Maryanne Crawford, CPA, Town Administrator/Finance Director

Arlene D. Kalooski, Town Clerk

Douglas R. DeSimone, Esq., Town Solicitor

Christina Collins, Deputy Finance Director

Arthur J. Christman, Fire Chief

Thomas Tighe, Police Chief

Dr. Frances Gallo, Superintendent

Christopher Powell, Conservation Commission Chair

Sav Rebecchi, Town Charter Review Committee Chair

Richard Allphin, Zoning Board of Review Vice Chair

Fred Pease, Town Seargant

Representative William J. Murphy

Representative Bruce Long

AWARDS, PRESENTATIONS AND ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

1) Proclamation honoring Ruth T. Branigan on her 104th Birthday

Council President Settipane introduced Ruth T. Branigan. In honor of Mrs. Branigan's 104th birthday, the Town Council President, Guy J. Settipane, presented her with a Proclamation.

Mrs. Branigan shared a thought written on a paper bookmark she carried with her. "It was nothing but a sunny smile, and little it cost in the giving, but like morning light it scattered the night and made the day worth living."

Representative William J. Murphy presented Mrs. Branigan with a Citation given by the House of Representatives in honor of her 104th Birthday.

2) Presentation from Fleet re: Municipal Credit Rating

Not addressed at this time.

 

SITTING AS ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE LICENSING COMMISSION

None

CONSENT AGENDA

It was moved by Councilor Littman, seconded by Councilor Long to approve the Consent Agenda. The Consent Agenda consisted of the following:

1) Adoption of Council minutes:

a) 01/14/2002 Regular Meeting

2) Bills and Payroll

3) Copies of Minutes of Boards & Committee Meetings:

a) Harbor Management Commission (12/12/2001)

b) Quonset/Davisville Liaison Committee (12/13/2001)

c) Zoning Board of Review (12/18/2001)

4) CRMC Notices:

a) January 2002 Corrected Amended Calendar

b) Finding No Significant Impact:

i) Nicholas Perry, 1520 York Ave, NY, NY re: replacing sliding door and 2 windows located at 195 Seaside Dr., Plat 15 Lot 214

ii) Ellen Winsor, 736 E. Shore Rd., re: construction and maintenance of a 200' long stone wall located at 736 E. Shore Rd., Plat 2 Lot 226

iii) Ellen Winsor (corrected notice)

c) Assents:

i) Raymond & Sharon Iannetta 1219 N. Main Rd. re: construction of a residential boating facility that will extend 70' beyond mean low water; located at 1219 N. Main Rd., Plat 3 Lot 545

ii) John Madden, 1112 Park Ave, NY, NY re: construction of a 5-bedroom dwelling, garage, driveway and swimming pool. The dwelling will be serviced by an ISDS with a municipal water line connection; located on Beavertail Rd., Plat 12 Lot 214

iii) Chris & Sheryl Atwood, 94 Lafayette Rd., N. Kingstown re: razing and removing 2 existing cottages and the construction of a 3 bedroom single family dwelling with a DEM approved ISDS with a municipal water line connection; located on E. Shore Rd., Plat 7 Lot 7 & 94

iv) Donald & Nancy Cloud, 109 Longfellow Rd re: construction of a 3 bedroom single family dwelling that will be serviced by an ISDS with a municipal water line connection; located on Beavertail Rd., Plat 12 Lot 48

v) Barbara M. Leonard, 276 Benefit St., Providence re: maintenance of a residential boating facility located at 75 Ocean Ave., Plat 8 Lot 772

vi) John C. Bolger re: construction of maintenance repairs to an existing concrete seawall; located at 36 E. Shore Rd., Plat 7 Lot 74

d) Notices:

i) Decision to Dominic & Patricia Munafo re: 1163 N. Main Rd., Plat 3 Lot 484

5) RI Department of Administration Statewide Planning Notice re: Schedule of regular 2002 Transportation Advisory Commission meetings

6) US Army Corps of Engineers Public Notice re: Narragansett Electric Co. cable project

7) Zoning Board of Review Abutter Notification to re: Barbara Leonard whose property is located at Plat 8 Lot 396 on Ocean Avenue. The applicant is in need of a variance from dimensional requirements of Definition 66 of Section 103 of the Zoning Ordinance, and Table 3-2 (District Dimensional Regulations) to create a lot with 60 feet of frontage on Bay View Dr. and 50 feet of frontage on Ocean Ave.. Said proposed lot is located in a R-20 zone

8) Tax Assessor's Abatement & Addendum

EXECUTIVE SESSION ANNOUNCEMENT

Council President Settipane announced that there would be an executive session later in the meeting, pursuant to RIGL 42-45-5 (a) (2) litigation.

1) Update of lawsuits against the Town of Jamestown pursuant to RIGL

42-46-5 (a) (2) Litigation per Councilor Willis

PUBLIC HEARINGS

None

OPEN FORUM

1) Scheduled request to address

a) Representative William H. Murphy and Robert Ballou, Department of Environmental Management re: Fish Processing Vessels (update)

Robert Ballou updated the Council on the status of the fish processing vessels. As of today one of the vessels has been notified that their permit will be suspended because of air quality issues. They have been given an opportunity to make repairs; however, if repairs are not made within five days they must leave. Additionally, it is expected that one of the other vessels will be leaving because of fish migration. That would leave one vessel to be moved to the West Side of the island. Mr. Ballou stated that DEM is sensitive to local concerns and in the future, would directly notify local communities to avoid this type of situation. Mr. Ballou informed the Council that the fish processing vessels are harvesting mackerel and herring on a trial basis because there is no domestic market for this species. Because there has been great success in this venture there is the possibility that a fish processing factory will be located at Quonset, thereby negating the need for fish processing vessels to be in our area. If this is received favorably by the Economic Development Corporation the processing factory could be up and running by this time next year. With the possibility of a fish processing factory located in Quonset, Mr. Ballou noted that he did not see any need for any continued operation next year along the same lines as we experienced this year.

Quonset Davisville Management Corporation (QDMC)

Representative Murphy presented a letter to address the need for a Jamestown representative to be appointed to the Quonset Davisville Management Corporation (QDMC). Council President Settipane requested that this issue be continued to the next Council agenda on February 11, 2002.

Representative Long discussed legislation being worked on that would set a format to provide communication between the communities, administrators, pilots association and fishermen in the event that any fish processing vessels would return in the future.

Additionally, Representative Long informed the Council that he and Representative Murphy would be introducing a bill requesting that a Jamestown resident be a voting member on the QDMC. A copy of this legislation will be included on the Town Council agenda for February 11, 2002.

b) Representative William H. Murphy re: Secretary of State

Representative Murphy informed the Council that it is expected that the Secretary of State will make a presentation to the Town of Jamestown and the Jamestown Historical Society on February 4 at 7:00 PM honoring Civil War participants.

c) Jamestown PTO re: Dr. Gallo's resignation; Karen Rafanelli and Karen Camp to address Council

Karen Rafanelli read a letter from the Jamestown PTO Executive Board in support of Dr. Frances Gallo and the Board's concern relating to cuts in the school budget.

2) Non-scheduled request to address

Catherine Goode DeVellis spoke in support of Dr. Frances Gallo and the educational needs of children attending the Jamestown School.

Bennett Hirsch read a letter that he wrote to the Jamestown Press in support of Dr. Frances Gallo and the progress of the Jamestown School system.

Maureen Ryall, Columbia Lane spoke in support of Dr. Frances Gallo. Additionally, Ms. Ryall expressed her concern and distress in the budget hearing process.

Amy Barclay DeTolly asked what the cap is on the fund reserve account in the General Fund Account and how much in excess there is in that account.

The Town Administrator informed the Council that the Town's Fiscal Advisor, William Fazioli from First Southwest Company will be addressing the Council later in the meeting and will be available to answer any questions relating to the fund reserve account.

The Town Administrator stated that the undesignated fund balance is budgeted at $2,400,000. Out of that balance, the Town Administrator budgeted approximately $1,000,000 to be used to pay off a ladder truck for the Fire Department at $271,260 and $500,000 to be used towards a new town hall, leaving a balance of $1,443,156.

Catherine Kaiser, School Committee Chair informed the Council that the School Committee budget cuts were made responsibly, without compromising any of the academic programs. The budget preserves small class size, funds textbooks, provides funds to update the library collection and upgrade schedule of classroom computers.

Aidan Petrie commented that the loss of the Superintendent is a high price to pay for this budget.

Council President Settipane noted that the Council is required under Rhode Island General Law Title 16, Chapter 7, Section 23, as a minimum requirement, after receipt of the approved budget from the School Committee, each community shall contribute local funds to its School Committee in an amount not less than its local contribution for schools in the previous fiscal year. That amount being approximately $7,655,000. This School Committee and this Council have increased the school budget by $618,000 which is an 8% increase. Council President Settipane further commented that enrollment in the Jamestown School has declined and that the school is not under funded.

The Town Solicitor reviewed the procedure to be followed in the adoption of the Town's budget. Mr. DeSimone referred to the Town Charter and Rhode Island General Law as specifically outlined in his letter to the Town Council dated January 25, 2002.

Gretchen Cohen inquired if the meetings or communications should be public or private.

Betsy Gooding, School Committee member commented on open meetings.

The Town Solicitor reviewed the Open Meetings Act.

Diane Caswell commented that consideration should be given to funds for a search committee to interview for a new School Superintendent.

The Council discussed their responsibilities in budget preparation and approval.

Council President Settipane requested that New Business, item #1 be moved to this portion of the agenda.

2002-2003 Town Budget Adoption

Town Council Budget:

The Town Administrator informed the Council that there was an error in the Library budget. Account 70700.100, Council recommended should be $149,737.00. This was a typing error and will not change the total Library budget. The Town Council budget as presented consists of the following:

* Operating budget $4,818,700

* Capital budget $ 671,896

* Debt service $ 284,604

The total Town Council budget is $5,775,200

It was moved by Councilor Willis, seconded by Councilor Swain that the $40,000 for the Harbor Management infrastructure be omitted from the Capital Improvement Fund. The vote was Councilor Willis, aye; Council President Settipane, nay; Councilor Long, nay; Councilor Littman, nay; Council Vice President, nay. The motion failed.

It was moved by Councilor Swain, seconded by Councilor Long to accept and forward to the Financial Town Meeting the Town Council budget for the fiscal year 2002 - 2003 as presented at tonight's meeting by the Town Administrator. So unanimously voted.

School Budget:

Prior to reviewing the school budget, Dr. Frances Gallo made a statement in support of the budget.

* Operating budget $8,274,005

* Capital budget $ 124,000

* Debt service $ 448,739

The total School budget is $8,846,744

It was moved by Councilor Littman, seconded by Councilor Long to approve the budget as presented by the Jamestown School Committee for March 1, 2002 to February 28, 2003. So unanimously voted.

Council President Settipane called for a five-minute recess at 8:50 PM. The Council returned from recess at 9:00 PM.

Presentation from Fleet re: Municipal Credit Rating

Council President Settipane invited William Fazioli of First Southwest Company to address the Council.

Before making his presentation, Mr. Fazioli explained that First Southwest Company was formerly a Fleet Financial Company. Mr. Fazioli informed the Council that credit ratings range from the top, which is AAA level to the lowest level C. Jamestown is rated at A2, which is an above average rating.

Mr. Fazioli stated that Municipal Rating Agencies consider four select credit factors; those being, debt burden, administrative, fiscal, economic and social. Also presented was a Top 10 List of Best Practices to be used in promoting efficiency in government. One of the most effective practices is maintaining a fund balance reserve. Mr. Fazioli suggested that a self-contained community such as Jamestown should have approximately $2,000,000.00 as a fund balance reserve. Other best practices discussed were multiyear financial forecasting, financial reporting and monitoring, contingency planning, policies regarding nonrecurring revenue, depreciation of general fixed assets, debt affordability reviews and policies, pay-as-you-go capital funding policies, rapid debt retirement and five-year capital improvement plan. Mr. Fazioli recommended that these practices should be formalized with a policy adopted by the Town Council.

Sav Rebecchi, Chair of the Jamestown Charter Review inquired if changing the fiscal year would effect the Town's credit rating.

The Town Administrator discussed several ways the Town could prepare to change the fiscal year. It was the consensus of the Council that the Town Administrator prepare comparisons to be considered and discussed by the Council.

REPORTS OF BOARDS, COMMITTEES AND TOWN OFFICIALS

1) Town Administrator's report

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Town Administrator Report

January 28, 2002

The following report consists of items of general interest to the Council. I will be pleased to provide any additional clarification or information you require.

Chris Powell informed me that the Conservation Commission received two trails grants from RIDEM totaling $9,200.00. One grant will fund three interpretative signs for trails on the island. The second grant will fund for the development and printing of an island wide public trails guided.

Last week the Police Department informed me the alarm at the Town Offices on Southwest Avenue was going off during the night. The police checked the building and it was secure. The following morning we realized we again have "four legged" visitors spending the night roaming around Town Offices. As much as we enjoy and welcome visitors to Town Offices and Jamestown, these long tailed visitors remain unwelcome.

I have spent some time analyzing the potential cost if the Town decided to change its fiscal year to July 1. I spoke with the Town Administrator in Coventry. They changed their fiscal year to July 1st approximately ten years ago. The Town adopted a four month budgeted and floated a tax anticipation note. In our case, after a preliminary review of both the Town and School-operating budget it appears the Town may have to borrow up to $4,000,000.00. I am currently working with our fiscal advisor to discuss the actual bottom line costs associated with the cost of such short-term borrowing.

For your information I have attached the job description and proposed preliminary budget for the implementation of the wastewater management ordinance. As I informed you at the Water and Sewer meeting, we received three applicants for the position of Administrator of the wastewater management ordinance. As requested I have attached the job description for this position. The salary range is $19,000.00 to $22,000.00.

The individual will work twenty hours a week with no benefits. I would like to proceed with the hiring of this person, to assist with the finalization of the wastewater management plan and begin developing the rules and regulations for Council approval so we may begin to implement this ordinance.

The League of Cities and Towns Annual Dinner is scheduled for February 7, 2002. If any Council members are interesting in attending this dinner please let me know.

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Councilor Willis requested a copy of the paving plan for Jamestown streets. The Town Administrator noted that scheduled paving takes place in the Spring. The Council will be provided with the schedule for paving and road repairs.

The Council discussed the costs associated with the available position of On-Site Wastewater Specialist. The funds for this position will be in a restricted account. Currently there is a grant balance of $15,000 to pay an intern. An additional $3,300 will come from intern funds in the Town Planner's budget, the remaining 22,000 will come out of Administrative Fees.

2) Town Clerk

a) Memorandum re: Warning for the Financial Town Meeting

The Town Administrator suggested amending Resolution Number 6 by removing the funds for a new town hall so that we are in compliance with Mr. Fazioli's recommendation that Jamestown should have $2,000,000.00 in our fund reserve account.

It was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Councilor Littman to amend Resolution Number 6 by removing the allocation for town hall construction and keeping the $271,260.00 allocated for the Fire Department's ladder truck. So unanimously voted.

It was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Councilor Swain to post the warrant by February 15, 2002. So unanimously voted.

a) Draft letter from the Town Clerk re: reapportionment (per Council's request)

Council President Settipane informed the Council that the letter as drafted by the Town Clerk, was sent to the Committee on Friday January 25, 2002.

It was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Council President Settipane to accept the draft letter as communication. So unanimously voted.

Councilor Willis requested that a letter be sent to Senator William Irons informing him that the Council is in agreement with the Senate Resolution on Reapportionment.

It was moved by Councilor Willis, seconded by Council President Settipane that a letter be sent to Senator William V. Irons stating that the Jamestown Town Council is pleased with the Senate reapportionment map that aligns Jamestown with Newport.

It was moved by Councilor Littman, seconded by Council President Settipane to amend the motion to include copies of the letter to be sent to the Reapportionment Committee and Senator Teresa Paiva-Weed and Representative William J. Murphy and Senator Irons. So unanimously voted.

The motion to send a letter to Senator William V. Irons stating that the Jamestown Town Council is pleased with the Senate reapportionment map that aligns Jamestown with Newport, with copies to the Reapportionment Committee and Senator Teresa Paiva-Weed and Representative William J. Murphy was unanimously passed.

3) Harbor Management Commission

a) Letter from Chair re: continued presence of fish processing vessels in West Passage

It was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Councilor Willis to accept the letter from the Chair of the Harbor Management Commission. So unanimously voted.

4) Quonset/Davisville Liaison Committee

a) Letter from Chair re: Quonset Davisville Management Corporation

It was moved by Councilor Willis, seconded by Councilor Swain to accept the letter from the Quonset Davisville Liaison Committee Chair. So unanimously voted.

5) Conservation Commission, three (3) vacancies, duly advertised (terms ending 12/31/2004); all interviews complete; if favorable, appoint

a) Requests for reappointment

i) Christopher Powell

ii) Mary F. Hutchinson

iii) Grace Mariorenzi

It was moved by Councilor Willis, seconded by Councilor Long to reappoint Christopher Powell, Mary F. Hutchinson and Grace Mariorenzi to the Conservation Commission, terms ending 12/31/2004. So unanimously voted.

6) Tree Warden, for reappointment, pursuant to RIGL 2-14-2 Appointment of Tree Warden

a) Letter from Chair re: reappointment of David Nickerson

It was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Councilor Swain to reappoint David Nickerson as the Tree Warden for the Town of Jamestown, pursuant to RIGL 2-14-2. So unanimously voted.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

1) Award Bid re: analysis of operational costs and site costs for proposed highway barn

a) Avcorr Consultants

b) Gannett Fleming

c) Industrial Process Group, Inc.

d) C & E Engineering Partners, Inc.

e) Banks Building Company, LLC

Following a discussion on the scheduled interviews it was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Councilor Swain to award the bids for operational costs and site costs analysis for the proposed highway barn to Gannett Fleming. So unanimously voted.

2) Fishing Processing Vessels (continued for discussion)

Previously addressed.

3) Narragansett Electric re: proposed cable landing

Christopher Powell announced that there would be a joint meeting of the Planning Commission and the Conservation Commission on February 6, 2002 at the Jamestown Philomenian Library at 7:00 PM to discuss the cable landing as proposed by the Narragansett Electric Company.

William Brennan spoke out against the proposed cable.

Arthur Christman supported the Narragansett cable project.

4) Adopt-A- Spot Program (cont. from 01/14/2002)

The Town Administrator suggested that the Council forward this proposed program to the Tree Committee for review prior to adoption.

It was the consensus of the Council that Adopt-A-Spot Program would be continued to the second Council meeting in February.

5) Claim from Donald T. Miller re: vehicle damage (cont. from 01/14/2002)

The Town Administrator noted that the street in question was being worked on at the time of the claim from Mr. Miller. It was the recommendation of the Town Administrator that this claim be paid.

It was moved by Councilor Willis, seconded by Councilor Littman to pay the claim relating to vehicle damage. So unanimously voted.

COMMUNICATIONS

1) Letter from Rep. William H. Murphy re: Quonset/Davisville Liaison Committee

Previously addressed.

2) Letter from Friend of Conanicut Battery re: opening ceremonies

It was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Councilor Littman to accept the communication from Friends of Conanicut Battery. So unanimously voted.

3) Letter from the Environmental Council of RI re: Senator John H. Chafee Conservation Awards

It was moved by Councilor Willis, seconded by Councilor Littman to accept the correspondence from the Environmental Council of Rhode Island. So unanimously voted.

4) Letter from Tenley van der Wal re: Dr. Gallo's resignation

It was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Councilor Littman to accept the letter from Tenley van der Wal. So unanimously voted.

5) Letter from Will Falk and Kate Fillion re: Dr. Gallo's resignation

It was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Councilor Swain to accept the letter from Will Falk and Kate Fillion. So unanimously voted.

NEW BUSINESS

1) 2002-2003 Town Budget Adoption

Previously addressed.

2) Town of Jamestown proposed date change re: Fiscal Year

Previously addressed.

3) Property Tax Exemptions re: proposed increases

a) Veterans

b) Persons Visually Impaired

c) Gold Star Exemptions

Council President Settipane noted that some of these exemptions have not been updated since 1984. The Town Solicitor informed the Council that the proposed increase for property tax exemptions can be forwarded to the Legislators.

Councilor Swain noted that there is an error on page one of six, item number (iv): should read five thousand instead of three thousand.

It was moved by Councilor Littman, seconded by Councilor Willis to amend the veterans exemption from three thousand dollars ($3,000.00) to five thousand dollars ($5,000.00) per year and that we amend the gold star exemption increased from three thousand dollars ($3,000.00) to five thousand dollars ($5,000.00) per year. So unanimously voted.

It was moved by Councilor Littman, seconded by Councilor Willis to amend or enact the Town's ordinance to increase the exemption for the visually impaired from twelve thousand dollars ($12,000.00) to fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000.00) per year. So unanimously voted.

4) Sunday Sales License

a) The Village Hearth

2 Watson Avenue

Town Administrator informed the Council that the Village Hearth was planning to open next week; however, the water connection fee has not been paid. The Town Administrator recommended that a six to nine month payment plan be considered by the Council so that the Village Hearth could open for business.

It was moved by Councilor Willis, seconded by Council President Settipane that the Sunday Sales License be granted subject to a payment plan provided by the Town Administrator with the provision that if the payment schedule is not met, the license will be revoked. So unanimously voted.

OTHER COMMUNICATIONS

None

EXECUTIVE SESSION

It was moved by Council President Settipane, seconded by Councilor Long to enter into executive session at 10:20 PM, pursuant to RIGL 42-45-5 (a) (2) litigation. It was voted Council President Settipane, aye; Councilor Littman, aye; Councilor Long, aye; Councilor Willis, aye. The motion passed.

1) Update of lawsuits against the Town of Jamestown pursuant to RIGL

42-46-5 (a) (2) Litigation

The Council returned from executive session at 10:50 PM. It was moved by Council President Long, seconded by Councilor Willis to seal the minutes of the executive session. It was voted Council President Settipane, aye; Councilor Littman, aye; Councilor Long, aye; Councilor Swain, aye; Councilor Willis aye. The motion passed.

It was moved by Council President Settipane, seconded by Councilor Swain to instruct the Town Administrator to engage in negotiations regarding the items as discussed in executive session. So unanimously voted.

There being no further business before the Council it was moved by Councilor Long, seconded by Council Swain to adjourn the meeting at 10:51 PM. So unanimously voted.

Attest:

 

Arlene D. Kalooski

Town Clerk

C: Town Council Members (5)

Town Administrator

Town Solicitor

Administrative Circulation

Town Council Meeting 01/28/2002

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