Back to Board of Selectmen Meeting Minutes
September 12, 2011
9:35 AM - Open Session (continued from 9/9/2011)
East Hearing Room 3rd Floor, Hingham Town Hall
Present: John A. Riley, Chairman; Laura M. Burns; Bruce Rabuffo; Ted Alexiades, Town Administrator; and Betty Foley, Assistant Town Administrator
With a quorum present, Chairman Riley called the meeting to order and reviewed the order of the agenda.
Questions from the Public: Larry Wetzel addressed the Board stating that he presented the petition on August 9th regarding the swap area at the transfer station; he wants to clarify the original request; he is requesting permission to submit an article, which he distributed to the Board; he believes it has not been clarified to date that the swap area will reopen on a full-time basis after the landfill capping is finished; and what the group he represents wants is for it to be reopened every day that the transfer station is open. Chairman Riley stated that once the capping is done, the intention is to have an area for the swap shop. Mr. Wetzel stated that based on a newspaper article, he thought it would not reopen until next spring. Mr. Alexiades discussed the seeding process, the expectation to complete the capping by October 15th and reopen at that time, the possibility of a delay if there is a problem with the capping or seeding process, the commitment of the Board to reopen a permanent area, and his uncertainty if it will be open every day. Ms. Burns stated that the swap area may not be open on a day when the transfer station is short staffed. She informed Mr. Wetzel that the Long Range Waste Disposal and Recycling Committee has been trying to reach him to invite him to its upcoming meeting and for him to invite anyone else who may be interested. Mr. Alexiades reviewed the legal concerns with the wording of the petition as previously submitted. Ms. Foley stated that at Town Counsel's direction she drafted a new Town Meeting article but she did not include the "every day" language. Discussion followed regarding the possibility of amending the article the Board presented and reviewing with Randy Sylvester the cost implications before committing. Ms. Burns suggested modifying the article to read like the article submitted today and discussing it and making any necessary recommendations at the hearings. Discussion followed regarding the process at Town Meeting if the issue is resolved prior to Town Meeting. Mr. Rabuffo requested that both Mr. Sylvester and Mr. Wetzel attend the discussions. No formal action was taken.
Community Planning – Review of Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) Documents: Katy Lacy, Director of Community Planning, stated that she reviewed the FFY 2012-2015 Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP) and Draft Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP) in response to the request from the MPO for comments. She discussed the purpose of the documents, Roger Fernandes' work on the Derby Street Corridor and Fore River Bridge projects, the three year project listed on the TIP to add a lane both ways on Route 18 in Weymouth, the five projects listed on the LRTP, including the upgrade to Route 53 from Quincy to Kingston. Mr. Alexiades noted that the Derby Street Corridor is not on the list. Discussion followed. Mr. Alexiades stated that just because a project is not on the 2012-2015 TIP today doesn't mean it can't be added. Chairman Riley discussed readiness of a project. Ms. Lacy noted that Town Meeting voted to support a significant amount of money to the project. Ms. Burns commented that the Hingham rotary seems to be lost entirely and inquired if there is a way to add it back. Discussion followed regarding this being a wish list, not a list of priorities. Mr. Alexiades questioned the use of the term "wish list," stating that the Town received the message to select one project. Ms. Burns suggested adding the rotary to the LRTP. The consensus of the Board was to request that the Derby Street project be placed on the TIP and the rotary be placed on the LRTP. Discussion followed including the area along 3A from the light on Summer Street to the Lobster Pound. No formal action was taken.
Discussion of Responses to Proposals for Town Counsel Services: Mr. Alexiades stated that a Request for Proposals (RFP) for Town Counsel Services was drafted, nine responses were received, Ms. Foley has ranked them, and now it is up to the Board to go through them and decide if there are any firms they would like to interview. He recommended that the Board also should visit the law offices. Mr. Rabuffo reviewed the RFP. Discussion followed regarding minimum qualifications, appointee experience, number of municipalities represented, accessibility, backup, billing, client before town, investigation, and billing rate. Mr. Alexiades stated that counsel services are not subject to Chapter 32, the terms can be modified, and flat fees and billing rates can be negotiated. Chairman Riley discussed the importance of real town counsel experience. Ms. Burns discussed the importance of experience and a need for municipal experience more than a need for a firm that does everything. Mr. Rabuffo discussed the qualifications of the lawyers, their education and fee structure. Mr. Alexiades discussed two basic business models of law firms in Massachusetts and the key areas of need for town counsel being Town Meeting and day-to-day municipal law questions. Discussion followed regarding the past highest areas for spending (Conservation); the biggest areas of anticipated issues over the next three years (Aquarion, regionalization, when special legislation is needed, workarounds, contracts with departments, and relationships with boards and commissions), the structure of services provided by firms, the size of firms, municipal experience, and personality. The general consensus of the Board was to invite Tarlow, Breed, Hart & Rogers, PC; Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane LLP; Blatman Bobrowski Mead LLC; Brackett & Lucas; Deutsch Williams Brooks DeRensis & Holland to a 30 minute interview each in open session on Monday September 19th.
Chairman Riley discussed current grant availability, requiring a 20 or 25 percent match, for a pump out facility on the harbor. Discussion followed regarding the need for a dock facility in addition to the boat, tides, manning, any ongoing restrictions, and current state reimbursement with respect to the boat. Chairman Riley stated that he would put the item on the agenda for the meeting on September 20th.
Adjourn Open Session: Voted – A motion was made by Ms. Burns and seconded by Mr. Rabuffo to adjourn. A vote was taken and all were in favor; the motion passed.
The open session adjourned at 11:23 AM.
Laurie Zivkovich, Clerk Pro Tem
Documents (a complete meeting packet of supporting documentation is on file and available for public review in the Board of Selectmen's office):
1. Memorandum dated September 1, 2011 from Katy Lacy to Ted Alexiades Re: Review of MPO Documents
2. Town of Hingham Request for Proposals for Town Counsel Services
3. Proposals of Tarlow, Breed, Hart & Rogers, PC; Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane LLP; Murphy, Lamer & Murphy, PC; Blatman Bobrowski Mead LLC; Brackett & Lucas; Deutsch Williams Brooks DeRensis & Holland; Miyares & Harrington; Susan Murphy; Kopelman & Paige, PC
4. Ranking of Proposals Spreadsheet
Approved: September 20, 2011