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

July 13, 2020 @ 4:00 p.m.



Selectman Wright read the following announcement:  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 at 4:00 p.m. by Robert Wright, Jr., Chair.  Present at the meeting were Robert Wright, Jr., Selectman; William I. Curless, Selectman; Dane Headley, Selectman; David Burnham, Health Officer; Cory Cochran, Fire Chief; Walter Baker, Jr., Conservation Chair; Joe Eisenberg and Melissa Laverack, citizens; and Elly Phillips, Town Administrator.  Attending by teleconference were:  Robert DeFelice, Budget Chair; and Marcy Vierzen, Library Trustee.


The minutes from July 6, 2020 were approved as written.  The non-public minutes from July 6, 2020, were approved as written.  The non-public minutes to remain sealed.


The Board reviewed and approved the following manifests:



VENDOR MANIFEST:  $84,260.00

The Board reviewed and approved the following building permits:


Justin Parker, 04-517-046, Fox Chase Road, for a shed

John Rogers, 01-578-478, Birch Hill Road for a home

Justin Fitzgerald, 01-136-386, for a garage

The Board reviewed and approved the following intent to cut:


Darrel S Palmer, 07-204-450, Baker Road, for 30 acres out of 45


At 4:30 p.m. Selectman Headley opened quotations for the 26 Grist Mill Street demolition project.  It was noted that Jonah Coldwell had provided a proposal previously and that his proposal amount had not changed.  The approved warrant article was for $30,000.  Selectman Headley reviewed and announced the proposals received as follows:

Jonah Coldwell for demolition of all buildings including removal and disposal of all debris.  Set aside granite for future use.  Foundation rocks to be taken down to 12” below final grade.  Fill foundation with material.  Project timeline 7-10 days.   Proposal amount:   $35,000.


Rowe Brothers for the demolition of buildings.  Disposal of all building materials and to fill cellar hole with adequate material for future use.  The foundation rocks will be removed to one foot below final grade.  Granite and plantings will be set aside for town use.  Town responsibilities were identified.  Proposal amount 25,623.00.


New Hampshire Demolition for complete demolition of structure.  Foundation walls to be removed 1 ft. below grade and disposed.  Sandy fill to bring footprint of building to grade.  Granite and planters to remain on property.  Dust control, DIGSAFE and MADEP/NHDES notifications for demolition.  Town responsibilities were identified.  Proposal amount $23,210.00.


Selectman Curless made a motion to contact the two bidders whose bids were within the appropriated amount and get start dates and completion times.  Selectman Headley seconded the motion.  Selectman Headley recommended that the bids be reviewed in further detail for comparison once timelines were determined.  The motion passed by a unanimous affirmative vote.  Selectman Curless said that after timeframes were determined the proposals should be compared for inclusion/exclusion items as they were very close in total project cost.


Selectman Wright asked for clarification of excluded amounts.  Selectman Curless felt that the costs associated with the excluded items would fall within the total appropriated amount of $30,000.  Selectman Headley felt the exclusions from both bidders were comparable.  Phillips to contact the vendors to obtain additional information regarding timeframes.


At 4:45 David Burnham, Health Officer, met with the Board to discuss reopening plans for the Pillsbury Memorial Hall.  There of a discussion regarding installing window inserts (similar to bank teller sliders) so people could conduct business without coming in the building.   Various options were discussed.   Pros and cons of installing slider windows were considered.  The current plan would require masks for staff and citizens.  The Town Clerk and Select Board office could each accommodate one citizen in the building at a time.  The Select Board’s office would see visitors in the main hall.


Mr. Burnham emphasized the need for masks and also have a plan in place for the Fall should there be a resurgence of COVID.   Selectman Headley noted that the Town has obtained sneeze guards.  Automatic sanitizer dispensers have been ordered, and the town is acquiring disinfectant.


Selectman Curless observed that the town should consider all options, but the current plan was a good start toward re-opening to the public.   Mr. Burnham emphasized the need to be pro-active.  Selectman Headley observed that there is increased availability of sanitizing supplies.  Mr. DeFelice discussed types of slider inserts that are used by other organizations.  The need for positive pressure inside the offices was discussed.  Mr. DeFelice will look for information on slider windows.  It is likely that this type of window would need to be fabricated.    Mr. Burnham will meet with the Board next week to discuss this matter in further detail.  Re-opening protocols will be advertised.


Selectman Curless discussed IWAVE technology that is currently available for air exchange.  This would be installed in the heating ducts.  The Town will advertise re-opening protocols.


At 5:00 Cory Cochran, Fire Chief, regarding 2020 budget expenditures for the Fire Department.  The Select Board is requesting that each Department attempt to identify areas for reduction of their operating budget in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Mr. DeFelice emphasized that this request was not going to reflect on the 2021 budget.  The Select Board is attempting to reduce expenditures in the event that revenues do not meet full potential this year.  Selectman Curless observed that if expenditures can be postponed until the Fall, the Town will have a better idea of where it stands financially.


Chief Cochran felt that the radio line item might be reduced by $1,000.  Chief Cochran was asked about the Hazmat annual fees.  Chief Cochran felt that Hazmat annual fees would be in place this year, but he will verify this at the upcoming mutual aid meeting.  Chief Cochran was asked about the training line item, in view of the fact that trainings have been postponed due to COVID.   Mr. Cochran felt this might be another area in which savings could be achieved.   Selectman Wright asked about protective equipment and was advised that expenditures from this line item were anticipated.   It was noted that the Fire Department generally waits for the Fall to order in an effort to acquire up-to-date equipment.


Joe Eisenberg/Melissa Laverack, 02-872-358, presented to discuss zoning issues on their property located off Jolly Farm Road.  Mr. Eisenberg and Ms. Laverack are currently staying in a permitted storage unit on their property.  They recently sold their residence on Main Street and needed a place to stay.  They plan to build a Detached Accessory Dwelling Unit (DADU) on their property.  The Board used Article III H to address the issue in a manner similar to that of Temporary Use of Construction Trailers and a Travel Trailer.  As such, Mr. Eisenberg and Ms. Laverack could reside in the trailer for 90-days which will provide ample time for them to complete their building permit application.  The Select Board will review the permit, once submitted,  to determine the appropriate appeal process for the proposed DADU, a special exception and variance(s) will be required.  The 90-days will start the date the building permit was approved for the storage unit.   Additional time may be granted upon written request for use during the construction phase.


Selectman Wright verified that there is a port-a-potty on site, a well has just been drilled, and the septic approvals are in process.  Selectman Curless advised that once a building permit has been approved, construction needs to start within six months.  Selectman Curless reviewed the requirements for the building permits.



Phillips will coordinate the clean up of the Stotler property with police doing a civil standby.


The Board discussed continuing negotiations with the North Sutton Improvement Society Parking Lot for a Maintenance Easement Agreement.  Walter Baker, Jr., Conservation Commission Co-Chair was in attendance regarding this matter.  A conference call with Counsel has led to a better understanding of the North Sutton Improvement Society (NSIS) concerns regarding an easement. If an easement is agreed upon, the Town would be able to expend funds for the project.  Although this was an unplanned expense and funds may not be available in the highway department operating budget.  Counsel is in the process of re-drafting the agreement to address NSIS concerns.  NSIS will be provided with the draft agreement by July 17, 2020.  Mr. DeFelice has been given authorization by NSIS to negotiate the easement with the Select Board.


Walter Baker, Jr., Conservation Commission Co-Chair, suggested drainage options for the lot.  The Conservation Commission is interested in installing a rain garden to help with drainage and provide filtration.  An engineer will be required and a shoreland permit must be obtained, prior to any grading, drainage, or installation of gravel.  Funding for the permitting was discussed.  Mr. Baker will provide information on a consulting engineer.  Selectman Curless asked if the Conservation Commission had funds available  and asked if they could assist with engineering costs.  Mr. DeFelice advised that the NSIS does not have funds available for the project.  From a budget standpoint, funding could come from various sources.   Mr. DeFelice said that NSIS could accept a donation from the KLPA, and in turn, donate those resources to the town.  Mr. DeFelice added that the Town was aware that permitting would be required for the project.


Mr. Baker discussed an area on the right hand border, where approximately 40’ would be useable for a rain garden for drainage.  The Conservation Commission would be responsible for that from the special projects line item.  Henry Howell, Conservation Co-Chair would spearhead that effort and coordinate volunteers for the project.  Mr. Baker will provide a referral for engineering services and assist with obtaining estimates for engineering and permitting costs.  Various funding options will be explored.  It was noted that the project was moving in a positive direction.


Mr. DeFelice supported  “just doing the basics this year” due to operating budget constraints resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.  Mr. DeFelice felt that it would be best just to get the parking area usable and look at the rain garden for next year.  Mr. Baker felt that the rain garden was necessary for drainage purposes.  Mr. Baker indicated that the costs would be minimal.


Update on Street Lights:  The inventory of street lights has been completed by Affinity, and the streetlight replacement project is set to commence.


Highway crew will do an inventory of wooden street signs that need  replacing and obtain replacements as the budget allows.  Selectman Headley also asked that directional signs be acquired for the Pillsbury Memorial Hall and for the Sutton Central School as previously discussed with the Road Agent.


Selectman Curless reported on his meeting with Moderator Lick regarding election venues and usage of the Pillsbury Memorial Hall.  Selectman Curless stated that he had a very productive meeting with Moderator Lick.  Selectman Curless recommended having the doors open independently for people coming in and out.  A plastic divider was considered to provide a barrier between people entering and exiting the building.  However, this measure does not meet fire code which would require a fireproof divider.  Selectman Curless discussed the layout of the voting area to best meet social distancing standards.  The potential for using the side door as an exit was also considered.  Mr. DeFelice suggested having Fire Department personnel standing by to designate the side door as an exit.  Selectman Curless will continue following up on the issue.  Selectman Headley asked about the timetable for providing information regarding absentee voting.  Selectman Wright noted that this was under the purview of the Moderator and Town Clerk’s office.



The Board authorized the Cares/GOEFFER GRANT – Reimbursement Request #2 in the amount of $4,816.89.


Selectman Curless discussed acquiring an  IWAVE Ionizer as an air purifier for the Town Hall.  Selectman Curless will continue researching the feasibility of an IWAVE for the Hall.


Action on a zoning enforcement letter for Hope Hersey, 27 Jolly Farm Road, Map 02-320-580, regarding  unregistered vehicles was deferred until next meeting.


The Board noted letters were received from Kyle Orde and Bruce Kozikowski concerning taxation especially as it pertained to the school and other matters.  Phillips was instructed to draft a letter to these individuals explaining the tax appeal process.



Selectman Headley recommended that a brochure be drafted to explain how the budget works and how the tax rate is determined.  Selectman Curless recommended that this type of information be included in the Round Room Report section of the Annual Report.  The Board favored a pie chart in a prominent position in the annual report.   The apportionment for the school taxation should also be explained.  Phillips and DeFelice will work to put together a handout.


Selectman Wright read from the KRSD School Board Retreat minutes of June 20, 2020.  “The discussion changed to the re-opening of schools.  Mr. Bessette shared with members a document which was started based on national industry standards. Items considered are: zones within facilities, develop and establish protocols and plans, and get proactive with materials, training, and signage to make spaces workable.  Right now we are still waiting from START committee for schools.  This example of a five page document is just for the SAU.  Schools are taking this model and looking at areas that need to be considered for a physical restart.  There are three columns: full return, hybrid return or remote learning.  Mr. Feneberg felt a hybrid model was not realistic for our district.  Staffing and transportation resources are not available.  Mr. Cancio-Bello was doubtful of a return to school considering the anticipation of a second wave.”


Selectman Wright asked for input from Mr. DeFelice.  Mr. DeFelice did not have any additional information but encouraged the Select Board to listen to the meeting that is scheduled for July 16, 2020.  The focus of the meeting will be on school re-opening.  Selectman Headley asked who had jurisdiction over opening, the school or the state?  More information will be available on Thursday.


Selectman Headley advised that he has ordered the automatic sanitizer dispenser and stands.  Ms. Himes will order the sanitizing product for the units.  Selectman Headley updated the Board on the sound system.  There is potential that some of the cost of the sound system can be covered from grant funding.


There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 6:00 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,


Elly Phillips

Town Administrator