In Brief . . . Board of Selectmen June 29

| July 15, 2017

By Nan Shnitzler

Police reserves to be hired
Selectmen voted to approve Police Chief Warren Nelson’s plan to hire four more reserve officers to provide flexibility in filling open shifts. The move comes in the wake of Sgt. William Warnken’s impending year-long deployment as an Army reserve officer. Police reserves offer more flexibility in hiring, training, scheduling, overtime and wages than full-time officers. Bolton has four reserve officers now, and Nelson plans to keep the new ones even after Warnken returns to Bolton. In addition, the department is short one full-time officer, and it’s been difficult attracting qualified applicants, Nelson said. In several hiring cycles, top candidates “washed out on background checks,” he said.

Board of Registrars disagreement
Selectmen Chairman Tom Frain and Town Clerk Pam Powell disagreed over interpretation of the state statute that determines who fills open Board of Registrars positions. Frain said the selectmen were obliged to choose from lists submitted by Democratic and/or Republican town committees. Powell did not think that was necessarily so, and said traditionally in Bolton, one position was filled by the assistant Town Clerk, and the board had always been politically balanced, as the statute prescribes. Selectmen voted on a Democratic candidate at their last meeting (only the Democratic town committee submitted a list) who declined the post. In the end, selectmen voted to interview the other two Democratic candidates and to consult town counsel about the statute.

Grant authorized for Long Hill Road culvert
Selectmen voted to authorize Town Administrator Don Lowe to pursue a culvert replacement municipal assistance grant from the Mass. Division of Ecological Restoration, Division of Fish & Game, for the failed culvert on Long Hill Road at West Pond. According to Lowe’s analysis, it was the only culvert that would satisfy the grant timeline. Lowe said $550,000 is available to multiple communities, and the money was not intended to fully fund projects, but rather to “help them along.”

Arts pavilion to be built on Town Common
Selectmen voted to approve the appointment of Town Administrator Don Lowe to the Bolton Conservation Trust’s capital grant award subcommittee as the town’s liaison in building an arts pavilion on the Town Common. BCT won a grant from the Mass. Cultural Council’s Facilities Fund that will reimburse expenses up to $96,000 – provided matching funds are available. “We spent hundreds of hours on the grant application,” said BCT treasurer Burt Shnitzler. “We were pleasantly surprised to get it.”

Votes to approve

Selectmen voted to approve: the three-year agreement designating Bolton Access Television the town’s Public, Education and Government Access Provider; a survey to be distributed by the Water Resource Subcommittee to gauge the town’s level of awareness of water availability and conservation; a new permanent sign to read “COFFEE” on the wooden signboard in front of 626 Main St.

Category: NEWS

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