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Wolfeboro selectmen reorganize, make appointments

Depot Square area improvement plans presented to selectmen

by Thomas Beeler
Editor of The Granite State News
April 12, 2012
WOLFEBORO — Selectmen took time at the beginning of their April 4 meeting to elect new leaders, adjust committee assignments and make appointments to various boards, commissions and committees.

Sarah Silk continued to run the April 4 meeting but Linda Murray was elected Chairman and Silk Vice Chairman of the board, effective with the next meeting.

All committee and board representation assignments remained the same except that Murray took over for Silk as liaison to Friends of Abenaki, Silk took over for Chuck Storm as representative to the Police Commission and Storm took over from Murray as representative to Wolfeboro Community Television. Also overlooked in the list were Carroll County Transit, which Dave Senecal will continue to cover and the Hazard Mitigation Committee, which both Murray and Silk will attend.

Selectmen also made appointments to several committees and commissions. Kathy Barnard and David Booth were reappointed to three-year terms on the Zoning Board of Adjustment. Lenore Clark, Mike Hodder and Randy Tetreault were appointed to three year terms on the Conservation Commission; also appointed for three years as alternates to the commission were Gary Mason, Art Slocum and Sarah Silk.

Wendy Rogers was appointed to a three-year term on the Agricultural Commission. There are still openings for two full members and two alternates on this commission. Silk was appointed as an alternate for three years.

For the Economic Development Committee Les MacLeod was appointed a member for two years and Denise Roy-Palmer was appointed as a member for three years. There is an opening for one more three-year member.

Kurt Dietzer and Skip Lorimor were reappointed to three-year terms on the Milfoil Committee and Ken Marschner was reappointed for one year. There is an opening for a two-year member.

Kathy Barnard and Jim Eisenhower were reappointed for three-year terms to the Pathways Committee. There are openings for two two-year members and one one-year member.

No one applied for membership to the Wolfeboro Energy Committee: there is one member to be appointed for a two-year term and two members to be appointed for three-year terms.

No one applied for a one-year position as the town's representative to the Carroll County Transportation Advisory Council.

The board discussed the problem of having a lack of applicants. It was agreed that Town Manager Dave Owen would advertise again for the volunteers to apply for the open positions.

Depot Square improvements

Public Works Director Dave Form reviewed improvement plans for Depot Square designed to correct American with Disabilities Act deficiencies in parking spaces and crosswalks. The U.S. Department of Justice reviewed the plans and requested two adjustments, which have been made.

Ford said he would like to do additional improvements beyond those required by ADA while has crews on site. Specifically, he would like to improve the curb and sidewalk down Railroad Avenue from Blacks to Bradley's Hardware and replace the poles at the end of that street with lights like those at Dockside (which would involve putting the wiring underground). The biggest practical issue with the poles is FairPoint, which may take longer to pull phone wires through the conduit, but the conduit would be installed. In the end overhead wires would be gone.

Ford said he had looked closely at the savings on winter plowing costs this winter. The total saved has been $40,000. He plans to use $25,000 of that to cover the additional work.

The most disruptive part of the work is preparing the square and streets for paving, which involves grinding up existing pavement, regarding and then repaving. The work is planned for the last week of April and first week in May, before the tourist season starts.

Ford pointed out that work on drainage and water lines on Glendon and Lehner Streets has begun and he warned motorists to avoid the Lehner/Glendon, Depot Square/Central Avenue shortcut for the next few months. Temporary water lines have been placed above ground: they are under high pressure and could break if run over. All areas where work is in progress will be kept accessible but travel will be slow and may be interrupted.

Other business

Selectmen agreed with Town Manager Owens recommendation that the town's Web site address be added to all town stationery as it is reprint.

The board heard a progress report on the Harriman Hill workforce housing project from Donna Lane, the town's Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) administrator. Two of the six buildings currently have certificates of occupancy and the remaining four should have them by the end of April. Net rents for the 24 apartments range from $565 to $951 per month. One of the buildings is completing rented and the second one is half rented. The CDBG grant for $500,000 to the town was spent on site work, including providing town utilities to the site.

Selectmen agreed to sign a petition to the state prepared by Ed Roundy to allow an historical marker to be placed on the grass island between Center and Birch Streets across from Goodwin Basin. The proposed marker would commemorate the use of the basin and adjacent Crescent Lake for ice harvesting from 1895 to 1965. Members of the audience were also asked to sign. A total of 20 signatures is needed.

It was pointed out that someone pried another historical marker off a large boulder on the property where the Bittersweet Restaurant/Barn Door is located on Center Street. That marker designated the site of the first Wolfeboro Town House in 1792. Roundy said he hopes that the Wolfeboro Historical Society and Daughters of the American Revolution would work together to replace the stolen plaque.

The board agreed to sign a lease for the Dockside Restaurant with Garwoods, Inc., for five years with a five year extension through 2021, as approved by voters in March 2011 in Article 29. The agreement includes a annual rent adjustment based on changes in the Boston Consumer Price Index. Garwoods has requested that the town add lighting between the restaurant and the Emma Taylor store and paint the building, which has not been done since Garwoods took over in 2004.

Selectmen also approved a three-year lease purchase agreement for computer servers for the police and billing departments for the low bid of $9,108 per year.

Friends of Town Hall is applying for the Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP) grant to restore the faces of the clock tower in Brewster Hall. Selectmen agreed to write a letter supporting the application.

Owen informed the board that the town has contracted with a cleaning service to clean town offices effective Monday, April 9. In the past a part time cleaner had been used.

Owen also gave selectmen the good news that the town has received "indicative prices" from six bidders for electricity supply for 2014-16 and all were down significantly. Four of the bidders were asked to submit formal bids. "It looks like rate relief is on the horizon," Owen said, smiling.

The new assessing firm, Murdough Assessing Services, is out and about updating assessment records. Cars have big signs identifying them as working for the assessing service.

Anti-harrassment training for town employees will be given on April 24 by insurance carrier Primex.

During public comment Tom Bickford asked if the board plans to discuss his complaint about the lack of on-call firefighters in town. As new chair Murray responded that the board will consider this issue soon when it sets its goals.

The next meeting of the Wolfeboro Board of Selectmen will be on Wednesday, April 18 at 6:30 p.m. at the Wolfeboro Public Library meeting room.

Martin Lord & Osman
Varney Smith
Brewster Academy
Brewster Academy
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