Special BOS meeting December 17, 2018
Notes submitted by Ed Munster
This special meeting of the BOS meeting was called to order at 6:00 PM at the Old Town Hall by First Selectman Lizz Milardo. Both Selectmen Maggi and Schlag as well as the FS Assistant JoAnn Ricciardelli along with about 15 residents were in attendance.
Under the appointments agenda item the BOS unanimously appointed Frances Kosalski of High Meadow to the Committee on Aging. Next was the appointment of the Town Planner. FS Milardo explained that she had appointed a hiring committee consisting of Jamin Laurenza, Chairman of P&Z, Sam Gold Director of the River COG, Jim Ventras, Town Planner in East Haddam, Chris Corso, Public Works Assistant Director, Lizz Milardo, Haddam First Selectman, Robin Munster who serves on ZBA and EDC, and JoAnn Ricciardelli from HR. The candidate Bill Warner had previously served as Town Planner for 20 years in Middletown and presently is serving as Town Planner in Farmington.
Selectman Maggi asked about the Town Planner’s salary to which Milardo said he would be paid in the range that we had been paying Liz Glidden. Selectman Schlag asked for the actual dollar amount to which Milardo explained that he would be working 30 hours per week at $50 per hour. Schlag then questioned whether he would work 30 hours per week ‘in the town hall’ to which Milardo responded that he would attend meetings that she would want him to attend as well as spend time in the town hall for a total of 30 hours per week. Schlag then asked whether he would be there in the town hall Monday through Friday to which Milardo responded that his exact scheduled is still being determined. Schlag then responded that then the 30 hours would include time he spends attending meetings. Right said Milardo and he will be a salaried employee and there is an agreement that he will not charge the town for more than 30 hours per week. Schlag then asked if he would retain any work outside of the Town of Haddam, Milardo answered that he would not.
Once that line of questioning was exhausted Schlag then made a statement that she was disappointed that her request to be on the hiring committee was ignored by Milardo. Milardo responded that Schlag had not been ignored and that this had been discussed before and that per the Town Charter two members of the BOS cannot be present at a meeting (Example: this hiring Committee) without it being considered a BOS meeting and this had been the concern of the town’s labor attorney. Schlag then asked about the Town Planner’s time off and Milardo said he would follow the same rules as other town employees. Schlag then said that she agreed that Bill Warner was an accomplished town planner but Schlag abstained on the vote which appointed him as Town Planner.
Next item on the agenda was the acceptance of a grant to Youth and Family Services for a juvenile review board. The grant of $5,232 involves federal money given to the State of CT which is making the grant to YFS. There is no match required so there is no cost to the town. Once approved by the BOS it will go to the Board of Finance. Schlag noted that the information on the grant was only one page but it states that the grantee will comply with all grant conditions but there is no attachment. Milardo stated that it was standard language passed the attachment to Schlag for her review. Schlag said there was no time in this meeting to read 20 pages of what is likely boilerplate. On the vote to accept the grant Maggi and Milardo vote yes while Schlag abstained.
Next item was the matter of the dump truck that the town wants to sell. Chris Corso provided prices of trucks that had recently sold at auction that could be considered comparable which ranged from $2,300 to $12,000. Corso has identified a buyer from town interested in purchasing the truck for $9,000. Schlag asked if the truck was advertised for sale and the answer was that relative to the comparables the $9,000 offer to purchase the 2001 dump truck was considered a fair price. The BOS voted unanimously to approve the sale of the truck.
The next item was to set the schedule of BOS meetings for 2019. Milardo’s proposal was to meet on the second Tuesday of each month at 6:30 PM. Schlag said that she was disappointed that there would only be one meeting per month and went on to ask that there be an opportunity for public comment at special BOS meetings. Milardo explained that for tonight’s meeting she did not include public comment on the agenda because there was a joint meeting of the BOS with the BOF at 7:00 PM and did not feel there would be time. Milardo went on to say that she has included public comments at special meetings in the past even though this is not required at special BOS meetings. On the vote to approve the schedule of meeting for 2019 Schlag voted nay while Maggi and Milardo voted yes. The meeting was then adjourned.