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02-04-09 MInutes


                                                            February 4, 2009




            The Board of Finance held a regular meeting on this date at the Police Department meeting room.  Members present were Glenn Frishman, Chairman; Andrew Rines, Secretary; Dudley Wheeler; John O’Brien; Bryan Bentz and Kevin Burns.    Also, present Maryanna Stevens, Director of Finance; Board of Selectmen; Town of Stonington staff and residents.


Mr. Frishman called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.


First Selectman Haberek called the Board of Selectmen meeting to order at 7:32 p.m.


Mr. Frishman informed those present that the order of the agenda would be changed.


Tax abatement-Lowe’s at Liberty Crossing

Attorney Thomas Collier, representing Breslin Realty Development Corp. introduced himself and Ken Walter of Retail Store Construction Co., Inc. to the Boards.  At this point, Marsha Standish, Tax Assessor informed the Boards of her Proposed fixed assessment calculations for Lowe’s at Liberty Crossing.  The total 100% cost submitted for Lowe’s is $20,272,622, which includes land and improvements. She stated that the appraisal methodologies are in accordance with the CT. General Statures and consistently applied within the Town.  The mill rate was used on a graduated scale based on growth in the grand list.  Mrs. Standish added that much of the information used would be determined by an official agreement. Also included was a summary of taxes to be collected based on a 5-year 50% tax abatement.  At this point, Atty. Collier commended the Assessor and Director of Finance for their quick information but wished to discuss the concept of the agreement stating this was all for the good of the Town, local companies would be used to construct, supply and retail the facility.  After a brief discussion, Selectman Brown stated that he was enthusiastically in favor of the project.  First Selectman Haberek asked for public comments at this time.    Don Sadowski, Bill Sternberg, Ed Hart, Peter Newbury commented.


Mr. Rines made a motion to approve the abatement request and forward to the Board of Selectmen.  Mr. Wheeler seconded and voting was unanimous. 


At this time, Mr. Frishman called a 5-minute recess. 





Bond Refunding

Mrs. Stevens informed the members that she had met with the Town’s financial advisor who in turn informed her that based on the current government bond market; the Town has three previous bond issues that qualify for refunding.  The potential savings to the Town over a twelve-year period is $500,807.50.  She added that Per CGS Section 7-370c the refunding of bonds must be approved by the Town’s legislative body.  Mr. O’Brien made a motion of a positive recommendation of the proposed refunding to the Board of Selectmen.  Mr. Bentz seconded the motion and voting was unanimous. 


Conservation Commission was tabled.


Budget Hearings:

            Police – Chief Stewart and Captain Desmond were present along with a few members of the Police Commission.  Chief Stewart stated that the Department presented a budget with a $194,000 increase for FY 09-10.  He added that the department has successfully established programs with increased communication with the schools and community. Members discussed briefly the Retirement fund, traffic signs, signals, and the replacement of CIP items vests and guns.  Members thanked the Chief and Captain.

            Highway - Mr. Bragaw briefly covered highlights of the present year and objectives for coming year.  Members requested detailed description of the pavement treatments line.  Mr. Bragaw explained that the department plans to work more closely with the utility companies to add more stringent guidelines with regard to work on Town roads and sidewalks.   Members asked about the lack of funding for Catch Basins, Mr. Bragaw explained that there is less mess on the roads since the department no longer uses sand. 


Mr. Frishman asked Mr. Bragaw to quantify the need for a Town Engineer.  Mr. Bragaw stated that this position is of high value to the Town and briefly described the many duties performed.  Mr. Frishman asked Mrs. Stevens to provide a Job analysis for the Board.


Previous minutes

Mr. Rines made a motion to approve the minutes of the January 7, 09 meeting with adjustments.  Mr. O’Brien seconded and voting was unanimous.


Mr. Burns questioned the grant process, particularly Locip money.  This is approved through Capital Improvements process.



Subcommittee reports

Mr. O’Brien reported that the audit for the Town has been completed.




Budget transfers

Mrs. Stevens had provided for the members 2008-2009 Fiscal year budget transfers. 



2008-2009 FISCAL YEAR






















Training Personnel Services



The incorrect account was reduced during the budget deliberations.














Clerical Salaries - Planning




Clerical Salaries - Assessor's Office



First Selectman cut clerical staff in assessor's office to part time and moved to the planning office part-time.














Town Hall/Human Services Phone




Town Hall/Human Services Phone



Rather than lease the phone system and pay interest, we budgeted it over three years














GIS Development-2008-09




Permit Tracking



During the budget deliberations - GIS was cut since there were funds in the previous year for permit tracking which would not be used

Members had an issue with #2, the transfer of Clerical Salaries from the Assessor’s Office to Planning.  Members also wished for clarification of item #4 the Permit Tracking to GIS Development line.  Mr. Rines made a motion to approve items 1 through 3.  Mr. Frishman seconded.  Mr. Burns, Mr. Wheeler and Mr. Bentz were in favor; Mr. O’Brien was against the approval of item #2.  All members unanimously agreed to table item #4.  


There being no further business to come before the Board, Mr. Rines made a motion to adjourn.  Mr. Wheeler seconded the motion and the meeting was unanimously adjourned at 9:20 p.m.


                                                                        Respectfully submitted,



                                                                        Andrew W. Rines

lp                                                                     Secretary