Pillsbury Memorial Town Hall
93 Main Street Sutton Mills, NH
Sutton Mills, NH 03221
Select Board

June 8, 2020 @ 4:00 p.m.



Selectman Wright read into the record the following:  Due to the COVID 19/Coronavirus Pandemic and in accordance with Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order #12, pursuant to Executive Order 2020-04, this Board is authorized to meet electronically. The public has access to contemporaneously listen and participate in this meeting by telephone by calling 978-990-5000 and entering access code 112820



The meeting was called to order by Robert Wright, Jr., Chair.  Present at the meeting were:  Robert Wright, Jr., Chair; William I. Curless, Selectman; Dane Headley, Selectman; Robert DeFelice, Budget Chair; Jennifer Call, Treasurer, Diego Solimine, Solid Waste Facility Supervisor; Nancy Brook (by teleconference) and Yvonne Howard, Library Trustees, Betsy Anderson, Library Trustee Alternate (by teleconference), and Elly Phillips, Town Administrator.



The Minutes from June 1, 2020 were approved as written.



At 4:00 p.m. Diego Solimine, Solid Waste Facility Supervisor, met with the Board to discuss miscellaneous facility matters.


Mr. Solimine reported that a couple of items needed clarification for the DES Septage Lagoon permit  renewal.   Mr. Solimine noted that some PFOAs and PFOE’s had been detected during routine testing and a response was required.  PFOAs are by product of Teflon, ScotchGuard, popcorn bags etc.  Mr. Solimine stated that nothing has really changed at the facility but testing additional testing is required. PFOA’s.  Previously testing for PFOA’s was not required and their presence seems to be popping up  throughout the State.  Phillips will follow up with the Judith Houston, DES.


Selectman Curless supported exploring closure measures in preparation for the potential need to shut down the lagoons due to inadvertent contamination.  Selectman Headley asked if there was the ability to remediate the PFOA’s.  Mr. Solimine said there really is not anything to do but monitor the situation.  Phillips and Solimine will work together on the completing the septage permit and responding to the DES requirements.


Mr. Solimine observed that the only time odors are detectable are when the haulers are dumping.   Mr. Solimine did not recommend closing the lagoons opining that it a future need arose for the lagoons implementation would be more difficult.


Selectman Wright noted that a response to the DES was required prior to July 1, 2020 and that it is not likely that there were any abutter drinking wells within 1,000 feet.  If necessary, the Town will hire a consultant to respond to DES requests.  Mr. DeFelice noted that professional fees could be allocated to the Capital Reserve for Lagoon Maintenance and Repairs.   Responsibility for testing costs was also discussed.  Mr. Solimine reviewed the permitting questions.



At 4:45 p.m. Betsy Anderson, Alternate Library Trustee, and Nancy Heckel, Library Trustee, met with the Board via teleconference to discuss 2020 and 2021 Budget Items.    Jennifer Call and Yvonne Howard, Library Trustees were also in attendance.   Selectman Wright advised that due to the COVID-19 pandemic and potential loss of income to citizens, the Select Board was asking departments to identify areas in their expenditure budgets where potential cost savings could be achieved.   Selectman Wright stated that this was merely a request and further explained that this was an effort to buttress the fund balance for future years.  Selectman Wright introduced Robert DeFelice, Budget Chair to discuss the role of library trustees in the budget process.    Mr. DeFelice emphasized that this was not a demand.  Fiscal concerns regarding the revenue stream prompted the desire to determine whether there were any areas that we could hold back on and re-evaluate finances later around November into the end of the year.


Mr. DeFelice addressed his handout pertaining to the Sutton Library 2021 budget.  Mr. DeFelice compiled information from the library manual for his summary.  Mr. DeFelice complimented the library trustees on their budgeting skills.  Mr. DeFelice advised that several years ago the library turned over much of their bookkeeping duties to the bookkeeping staff.  He observed that this is not the typical way library budgets are handled, and the town was interested in returning those duties to the library as the statutes specify.   Ms. Anderson and Ms. Heckel felt that the library could handle those duties and that they would bring the matter back to the Trustees for consideration and get back to the Select Board with a response.


Mr. DeFelice said that the Town would issue a check to the library for their approved appropriation.  The library would still need to account for the expenditures, report to the Select Board and Budget Committee and undergo audit.    Ms. Anderson asked if that would include the salary line item and was advised that the librarians were technically not employees of the Town and that this responsibility should go back to them.


Selectman Wright cited RSA 202-A:2 which states in part that the Trustees have the authority to expend all funds provided to the library, and determine how they will be spent.  Adding that the Board of Trustees is the sole governing body of the library and that library employees are not town employees.  This explains why the salaries would be the responsibility of the library.  Selectman Wright and Mr. DeFelice observed that the library was the only department in the Town that has this authority.  Mr. DeFelice explained that this switch would not take place right away and that this discussion was to get “the ball rolling” for next year.  Mr. DeFelice reiterated that the library would still come before the Budget Committee and the Select Board to present their line items.  The Budget Committee would vote on the bottom line which would be what would be presented at Town Meeting.

Any additional funding would be asked for through a warrant article.   Mr. DeFelice noted that this would give the library complete control and would still report their finances annually to the state.  Emphasizing that this would allow the library more flexibility with their line items.


Ms. Call asked if the library had their own tax identification number.  The general consensus was that they did.


Mr. DeFelice said that the Budget Committee would still provide guidance to the library.  Mr. DeFelice asked that the library trustees review the library manual in detail to determine where responsibilities for expenditures would be allocated.  Mr. DeFelice provided the example that the Town would be responsible for providing insurance for the building, but the library would provide insurance for the contents.


Mr. DeFelice felt that this manner of funding would make things easier for the library and that the trustees were fully up to the task.  Selectman Wright added that the budget would be prepared on a gross basis which would include expenditures and revenues.   Ms. Heckel asked whether this includes capital reserves for the library.  Mr. DeFelice advised that capital reserves for the library would still be managed by the Trustees of the Trust Funds and used for the special purposes for which they were established.


The Select Board asked to meet with the Library Trustees after the trustees have had an opportunity to consider and discuss this approach to the budget which is in keeping with the letter of the law.  The library will be invited back to meet with the Board the last week in July (July 27, 2020).


Dane Headley asked whether there might be areas for savings in the library’s 2020 budget.  Mr. DeFelice advised that he had reviewed the budget and did not think that there was much room for a 10% savings.  Mr. DeFelice asked that the librarians exercise frugality where possible until we have a better understanding of how things are going.  The Select Board is asking every department to be careful and hold off on expenditures where possible.


Ms. Heckel noted that there was an increased demand on the library due to the pandemic because everyone is staying at home.  The library will be opening for curbside this week.  Mr. DeFelice expressed interest in tracking the increased demand so that citizens could be made aware if the libraries activities while it was closed and during curbside services.


Ms. Anderson thanked the Select Board for the discussion and for understanding how tight the library budget is.



The Board reviewed and approved the following manifests:


VENDOR MANIFEST:  $48,904.69



The Board reviewed and approved the following building permits:

William Ryan & Teri Grant, Davis Court, 07-885-315, year-round porch and dormer

Kearsarge Regional High School, 05-505-365, replace and relocate existing pad transformer

Tom Martinson, 07-634-316, Shaker Road, Roof Repairs asphalt to metal



The Board approved an intent to cut for Freeman and Patricia Boynton, 09-822-416, 12 acres out of 12



The Board received an application for a regular veteran’s exemption in the amount of $500.00 from Nancy Whatley, 08-660-019.  The application was not filed timely and Ms. Whatley was seeking COVID-19 forbearance.  The Board will seek further information in order to determine whether or not to grant an extension of the exemption deadline.



Selectman Wright reported on the School Board’s response to a request from Town to utilize middle school for elections.   The School Board had a number of concerns including:  What would happen if there was a lock down?   The School Board felt that interactions between the voters and school functions could pose a problem.  The School Board felt that if voting were opened to the Town of Sutton, it would need to be offered to the other district towns.    The Select Board also had various concerns about the change.  For these reasons, the School Board voted against allowing the Town to vote at the school.


Phillips reported on a site visit by David Burnham, Health Officer in response to a complaint  of odors near Horse Beach due to visitors to the lake using the woods to go to the bathroom.  Mr. Burnham did not find the odors evident and citizens. Mr. Burnham polled visitors present regarding the matter and was advised that they had not observed such odors.  Phillips will follow up on with the citizen complaint.



The Board and Jennifer Call, Treasurer,  issued a Tax Anticipation Note in the amount of $900,000 at an interest rate of 2.99%.


The Board signed the MS-535 Financial Report of the Budget.


Phillips reported that the electric rates were looking favorable at this time.  For 2019 rates were locked in at .07785 per kWh, and the rate could be negotiated at .06990 per kWh.  Selectman Curless made a motion to lock in Electric Rates at .06990  for one year with NEXTERA.  Selectman Headley seconded the motion.  The motion passed by a unanimous affirmative vote.


The Board discussed the proposal for demolition of the buildings at 26 Grist Mill Street.  The Town will retain the granite steps and foundation.  Phillips will check with contractors who previously supplied estimates to see if their estimates still stand and issue the RFP.


The Board received Budget Expenditure reports for review at the next meeting.


Selectman Wright read a letter from Jack Noon on condition of Old Store Museum and needed maintenance items.  The town will seek estimates for the recommended repairs.



Select Headley asked to participate in the Lorman Educations Services which provide educational webinars various zoning and municipal subjects.   The Board authorized the expenditure.


Selectman Headley discussed sneeze guards to be installed on the Town Clerk and Select Board offices in preparation for reopening.  Hand Sanitizer dispensers will also be ordered.  The Board decided on cast iron bases.  These expenses will be reimbursed through CARES Act funding.


Selectman Wright discussed the KRSD’s acquisition of chromebooks.  Mr. DeFelice noted that the school has bought 500 tablets at a cost of $90,000.  Some of the tablets have gotten broken and need to be replaced.  Selectman Wright will be attending the next budget committee meeting.  The Board was encouraged to attend the next School Board meeting.  Emilio Cancio-Bello, School Board Representative will be invited to attend a Select Board Meeting to discuss the KRSD Budget to determine if they are able to offer any reduction in expenses.


Adam Hurst, Road Agent to be invited to the next Select Board meeting to discuss a citizen interaction at the highway facility.



Mr. DeFelice reported that the Town has acquired a tablet for use in Zoom meetings.


There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 5:42.


Respectfully submitted,




Elly Phillips

Town Administrator