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Wolfeboro accepts gift of flags honoring police and firemen


by Thomas Beeler
Editor of The Granite State News

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RESIDENT ROBERT BRENNAN presented Wolfeboro Police Chief Dean Rondeau with one of the three flags he is donating to the town to recognize National Police Week. One of the flags will also recognize fallen firefighters. The flags will be flown in front of Town Hall and the Public Safety Building from May 11 through May 17. (Dave Bowers photo) (click for larger version)
May 11, 2017
WOLFEBORO — Wolfeboro resident Robert J. Brennan came before the Board of Selectmen to request that they allow him to present a special flag to Wolfeboro Police Chief Dean Rondeau as part of National Police Week in honor of peace officers killed in the line of duty. He also asked that the flag be flown along with the American flag at Town Hall and/or the Public Safety Building during that week, May 11 through 17.

Brennan said he grew up in Wolfeboro and served as a police officer in the California Bay Area for 31 years. For eight of those years he was the Palo Alto police chief, and during his tenure one officer was killed in the line of duty. He said that during 2016 a total of 135 officers were killed in the United States, (10-12 a month), with 64 of them killed by gunfire. "The State of New Hampshire is fortunate to have 0 officers killed in the last calendar year, but I have lived here long enough to see several funeral procession roll on the streets of New Hampshire," he said.

The flag to be presented measures three by five feet and has a stars and stripes design, white with navy or black stripes, accented by a bright blue stripe in the middle, symbolizing the thin blue line. "This flag represents not only peace officers killed this past calendar year, but all those who have sacrificed their lives and will continue to sacrifice their lives for the people of this Town, State and Country they serve and protect," he wrote in an email requesting the meeting.

At the meeting he offered to donate two such flags, one each for Town Hall and the Public Safety Building, as well as a flag of the same design with a thin red line, representing firefighters.

Selectman Linda Murray moved to accept the flags and to fly them as requested in both locations from May 11 through May 17.

Both Police Chief Rondeau and Fire-Rescue Chief Jim Pineo were present. Rondeau accepted a flag on behalf of both departments.

Selectmen also signed a proclamation recognizing National Police Week in Wolfeboro. The main memorial will take place in Washington on May 15, which has been designated Peace Officer Memorial Day since 1962. Between 25,000 and 40,000 officers are expected to attend, according to Brennan.

Other business

The board held public hearings on two applications for Discretionary Preservation Easements for Historic Agricultural Structures for two of the oldest barns in town. See separate article in this issue for details.

Selectmen also held public hearings on 12 temporary event permits for 2017 and granted them all. Included were Nickfest (July 15, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Monument Field), a 1K run/walk to benefit the Child Advocacy Center of Carroll County (June 24, 2-5 p.m.), a Wolfeboro Public Library Children's Musical Concert (July 13, noon to 4 p.m. in Cate Park), and for L.I.F.E. Ministries Food Pantry to set up a raffle/concert ticket/donation table (July 28-30, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. at 22 South Main Street).

Seven permits were also approved for the Wolfeboro Parks & Recreation Department to hold Wolfeboro Bike and Walk Day (May 12, 6:30 to 10 a.m.), Movies in the Park (every other Friday, beginning June 16, at dusk), July 4th Fireworks viewed from the Brewster Athletic Fields, Granite Kid Triathlon (July 15, 8 a.m. to noon, beginning at Brewster Beach), Lake Wentworth Sailing Regatta (Aug. 5, noon to 5 p.m. at Albee Beach), Granite Man Triathlon (Aug. 19, 9 a.m to 2 p.m. starting at Carry Beach), and the Turkey Trot 5k Race (Nov. 18, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. starting at the Railroad Depot).

Selectmen also approved permits for the Back Bay Water Skiers to hold four tournaments and championships on Back Bay (June 24, July 22, Aug. 5, and Sept. 9).

A new date of Aug. 12 was approved for the Easter Seal Veterans Count Event.

The board also signed a proclamation naming May 5 as Arbor Day in Wolfeboro, to be celebrated with a planting of bulbs and a tree at 10 a.m. in Bean Park, with Crescent Lake School students assisting.

Lakes Region Household Hazardous Waste Product Facility Manager Sarah Silk gave a presentation on hazardous waste collection dates (the third Saturday of the month from May through October, beginning May 20), unwanted pharmaceutical collection dates (third Saturday in June and August in Wolfeboro and second Saturday in July and September in Alton), and a new mid-winter pharmaceutical collection day planned for 2018.

Selectmen accepted a Department of Environmental Services grant for $3,185 for hazardous waste collection in 2017.

The board signed a Quit Claim Deed conveying a 19 square foot portion of Wood Avenue to the Sawmill Marina Condominium to help meet setback requirements for new docks.

Town Manager Dave Owen noted that there were still openings for one full member of the Energy Committee, two full members of the Pathways Committee, and three full members of the Fisherville Committee. Wolfeboro residents interested in serving on these appointed committees should contact Owen at 569-8161.

Owen noted that public works employees stopped work on the Dockside parking lot due to a high water table. Work will resume when the level drops.

John MacDonald and Bob Tougher were re-elected chair and vice chair of the budget committee. The committee plans to take up the issue of fire hydrant fees this year.

An elevator lockout system was installed in Town Hall to prevent access to offices in the evenings.

The hands and numerals on the tower clock face will be removed the week of May 8 for refinishing. They will be returned by Memorial Day.

Granite Hill Municipal Services has begun the second year of the four-year process of verifying property data for assessing. Assessors will wear identifying badges and will inspect another 25 percent of properties in town.

The Department of Revenue Administration certified its calculation of the 2016 Total Equalized Valuation of the town at $2,056,827,170.

Owen announced that total tax liens assessed for non-payment of property taxes in 2016 were $217,452.77. Selectman Dave Bowers noted that the majority were for properties on Winnipesaukee Drive. He also noted that the developer stopped paying taxes on a communal property at the end of Chipmunk Road and asked that the issue be placed on the next agenda.

Selectmen were invited to attend a dinner honoring the 225th anniversary of the First Baptist Church on May 20. The board was also invited to the opening reception for the 2017 season of the Wright Museum on Thursday, May 18, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Ann Blodget formally invited selectmen to the first Watershed Summit to be held by the Wentworth Watershed Association on Saturday, May 13, at 9 a.m. in the Great Hall.

The next meeting of the Wolfeboro Board of Selectmen will be on Wednesday, May 17 at 6:30 p.m. in the Great Hall. Please use the rear parking lot entrance to town hall where an elevator is available to reach the second floor auditorium.

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