The Bethel Community Gazette
The Bethel Community Gazette
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Meeting Minutes: Charter Revision Committee
Meeting Minutes

Charter Revision Committee

September 4, 2019

7:00 p.m.

CJH Municipal Center Meeting Room A

Present: Chairman Nicholas Hoffman, Vice-Chairwoman Melanie O' Brien, Patrick Perrefort, John Lennon, and Theresa Letellier. Also in attendance was Counsel Nicholas Vitti. Joyce Hess and Sharon Straiton were absent.

Approval of minutes from the regular meeting, Wednesday, July 9, 2019: Chairman

Hoffman made a motion, which was seconded by John Lennon to approve the minutes of regular meeting July 9, 2019. Vote, all in favor, motion approved unanimously

Correspondence: Chairman Hoffinan referenced an email from Thomas Galliford with a request to change the title "Director of Civil Preparedness to " Emergency Management Director. Discussion ensued.

Chairman Hoffman read a letter from First Selectman Knickerbocker (see attachment).

Discussion ensued.

Public Input:

First Selectman Matthew Knickerbocker discussed the recommendation of changing the Board of Selectmen to a 4-year term.

Review of proposed Charter-Revisions by members of the Committee:

Among other things discussion ensued among the board at increasing the Board of Selectmen to a 4- year term.

A reminder of the Public Hearing on September 25, 2019; 7pm in the Multi Purpose Room was shared.

Consideration of approval of counsel fees from Cacace, Tusch and Santagata:

Chairman Hoffinan made a motion, which was seconded by John Lennon to approve the invoice, dated August 1, 2019 in the amount of $845.41. Vote, all in favor, motion approved unanimously.

Since there were no other items on tonight's agenda, Nicholas Hoffinan made a motion, which was seconded by John Lennon to adjourn the meeting at 8:01 p.m. Vote, all in favor, motion approved unanimously.

Respectfully submitted

Dionne Craig

Recording Secretary

Attached w/Meeting Minutes

September 4, 2019

TO: The Charter Revision Commission

FROM: Matthew Knickerbocker, First Selectman

CC: N. Vitti, M. Lawlor

RE: Feedback on Proposed Charter Changes

Dear Commission Members:

Thank you for the work you are doing on behalf of our town. In response to the draft of proposed changes that were released by Attorney Vitti on August 28th, I have the following changes to request, most of which are technical in nature.

C8-9 (page 27-28) Department of Public Works: Please change "building management" to " building maintenance."

New Department Needed: Please add new section for " Department of Public Utilities" (DPU); pull language from former DPW which describe responsibilities for management of public water and sewer departments.

New Position Needed: In conjunction with the item above, need to add " Director of Public Utilities" as a separate entity; the DPW Director and the DPU should not be the same person.

C8- 13C- 4(i): This change would allow the use of purchasing cooperatives for the Board of Education, but appears to inadvertently exclude "Town of Bethel." Please correct to allow the Town to also participate. There are numerous government-recognized buying cooperatives available to us today that represent a valuable new opportunity to save taxpayers money and speed project turnaround time.

I noted also that the Commission did not address the recommendation for changing the Board of Selectmen to a 4-year term. I will present a recommendation in a separate communication.

Editor's Note:

We requested the August 28th recommendation draft that is referenced above by First Selectman Knickerbocker in his appended letter to the meeting minutes, but they were not made available to us by press time. We also contacted the First Selectman's assistant to inquire about why the video of his address to the Charter Revision Committee was not posted online with the other meeting videos of that week. She informs us that she is looking into the issue. We would normally direct readers to the meeting video if it was available, and will follow-up once it is posted.


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