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Barnstead selectmen welcome Barnard back


March 27, 2012
BARNSTEAD — The Barnstead Board of Selectmen met March 20 and welcomed Jim Barnard back onto the board.

The meeting was opened to public input and the board was issued a stern challenge from resident Joyce Grey: To provide the police chief with a job description, give him an evaluation on a yearly basis, to set requirements of the police department and to set requirements of themselves in regards to how the board governs the police department. Grey's concerns were based on the findings of the report that had been prepared by Municipal Resources Inc., concerning the Barnstead Police Department.

Grey's parting words to the selectmen drove her point home, "this report is 50 percent the selectmen's problem, ...the amount of liability that we are responsible for because these things are not done is terrifying. …And I don't mean six months, I don't mean next town meeting, I mean within the next 30 days," she said. "That's a challenge to you to get this done."

Selectman Robert Laroche responded by thanking Grey. Alan Glassman addressed the board and made the comment that Grey's evaluation and statements to the selectmen were, "very much in order." Glassman also inquired about what plans the selectmen may have or are considering concerning a true regionalization effort for policing duties now that the sheriff's proposal had been voted down.

Laroche stated that there were no plans at this time and that in the future he would bring it up. Barnard said that he had previously, spoken to the chief of police in Pittsfield and in Gilmanton and that both were interested in discussing the possibility, but that nothing more has come of it at this point in time.

The discussion then dissolved into a back and forth regarding the communication systems that would be used between towns and the communication system that currently exists.

Deputy Fire Chief Shawn Mulcahy informed the board that there have been occasions where the fire department has had to relay information to police dispatch regarding the safety status of police officers, on-scene, because the police department's handheld communications have no reception.

After several more minutes of melee the board acknowledged that the communication was an issue and that they would have to look into it.

The meeting was closed to public input and the board moved onto business of committee appointments for the upcoming year. Selectman Priscilla Tiede nominated David Kerr to be the selectmen's chairman. Barnard also nominated Kerr and the decision was made unanimously. Barnard nominated Tiede as vice-chair of the selectmen's board, seconded by Francis Vardaro and she was approved unanimously. The board appointed these representatives to the following boards: PEPC Representative - Vardaro, with Kerr as alternate; conservation committee – Tiede; budget committee - Kerr, with Barnard as alternate; planning board - Laroche, with Kerr as alternate; Safety Administrator - Laroche.

After solidifying the committee appointments for the year, Fire Chief Mark Tetreault came before the board to present the bids that had come in for the new water tanker truck and to make his recommendation. Tetreault presented four bids to the selectmen: Rosenbauer - $324,7100; US Tanker - $329,339; Valley - $333,460; HME - $341,600. Based on the specifications the companies were given and their ability to outfit the tanker to these specs, Tetreualt's recommendation to the board was to accept the bid from HME in the amount of $341,600. The board then launched into a lengthy Q&A session with Tetreault and Mulcahy over the specifications and the functions of certain equipment regarding the tanker. In addition to the tanker itself, it was determined that additional equipment would need to be purchased for the tanker for it to meet the operational requirements the fire department requested. Tetreault produced a list of the additional equipment and a cost break-down for the equipment to the selectmen.

On top of the $341,600 for the truck from HME, the equipment that needs to be purchased will cost an additional $22,313. At Town Meeting, the residents of Barnstead approved the amount of $355,000 for the purchase of the new tanker truck. The combined total of the truck, and the equipment it requires, brings the total cost to $363,913. This represents $8,913 more than what was approved by the people of Barnstead at their Town Meeting.

Vardaro made a motion to accept the bid from HME in the amount $341,600 for a new water tanker truck. The motion was seconded by Tiede and passed by unanimous decision.

The Barnstead Board of Selectmen meets every Tuesday evening at 6:30 p.m. in the Town Hall.

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