TOWN OF EAST WINDSOR
CHARTER REVISION COMMISSION
January 22, 2009
***** Draft Document - Subject to Commission Review *****
The Meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Co-Chairman George Butenkoff in the Town Hall Meeting Room, 11 Rye Street, Broad Brook, CT.
ATTENDANCE/(Establishment of Quorum):
Present: Co-Chairman George Butenkoff, Members Claire Badstubner, Karen Gaudreau, Joyce Phillips, Scott Riach, Charles Riggott, Madeleine Thompson, and Bonnie Yosky.
Absent: Co-Chairman John Matthews, Donald Arcari, and Edward Farrell.
Guests: Kathy Pippin, representing the Board of Finance.
A quorum was established with the presence of eight members. Co-Chairman Butenkoff chaired the meeting this evening.
ADDED AGENDA ITEMS:
The following documents were submitted for discussion this evening:
· E-mail correspondence from Joseph Ouellette, Chairman of the Planning and Zoning Commission – presented by Commissioner Gaudreau
· Agreement between the East Windsor Cemetery Association and representatives of the Town of East Windsor, the Broad Brook Fire Department, and the Warehouse Point Fire Department – presented by Commissioner Yosky.
Co-Chairman Butenkoff also requested addition under DISCUSSION OF TOP 5/Wrap up review of entire charter for completion of revisions by the end of March.
MOTION: That the East Windsor Charter Revision Commission re-read the entire charter and come in with suggestions for the next meeting to incorporate with Attorney Mednick’s recommendations.
Yosky moved/Phillips seconded/VOTE: In Favor: Unanimous
Co-Chairman Butenkoff suggested the Commission prepare a Powerpoint presentation for submission to the Board of Selectman when discussing revisions. Commissioners Butenkoff
and Yosky will work of this presentation.
PUBLIC PARTICIPATION - The public is encouraged to provide their thoughts as succinct as possible. CRC Members will not comment on the merits of an idea at this meeting but may ask questions to clarify the proposal. A time limit may be imposed.
No one requested to speak.
PREVIOUS MEETING MINUTES/comments and acceptance:
MOTION: To APPROVE the Minutes of January 8, 2009 as written.
Phillips moved/Riach seconded/VOTE: In Favor: Unanimous
WRITTEN INPUT SUBMITTED TO CRC/(a): E-mail correspondence from Joseph Ouellette, Chairman of the Planning and Zoning Commission – presented by Commissioner Gaudreau:
Commissioner Gaudreau submitted copies of Chairman Ouellette’s correspondence which summarized several reasons for retaining the position of PZC Commissioners an appointed position. She reiterated her earlier finding that the Connecticut General Statutes reference the Planning and Zoning Commission as being created “by ordinance”. Any change would therefore have to be made via ordinance revision. The Commission has deleted their revision to make the PZC members an elected position, and have returned the original language of the charter – retaining the position of PZC members as an appointed position. Commissioner will respond to Chairman Ouellette’s e-mail accordingly.
ADMINISTRATIVE HOUSEKEEPING/(a): Agreement between the East Windsor Cemetery Association and representatives of the Town of East Windsor, the Broad Brook Fire Department, and the Warehouse Point Fire Department – presented by Commissioner Yosky.
Commissioner Yosky submitted copies of an agreement between the parties listed above regarding maintenance of veterans and firefighters flags going forward. There are no other agreements between the Town and the Cemetery Association.
Commissioner Gaudreau reported she has reviewed the Grand List for the Town of East Windsor and found that all cemeteries are owned by the Town, with the exception of St. Catherine Cemetery, and 26 acres connected to the Scantic Cemetery which was conveyed to the Cemetery Association by an individual. This 26 acres borders the Scantic River; it was thought much of that land may be wetlands and not useable for cemetery property. Commissioner Gaudreau noted there are no deed references regarding the Town cemeteries as they are so old. The Commission requested Commissioner Gaudreau to pass this information on to the Board of Selectmen.
Commissioner Gaudreau also noted the Cemetery Association is presently listed in the current charter as being a permanent commission, but nothing is done to appoint members through the Town appointment process.
REVIEW OF CRC MEMBERS input for proposed revisions: Nothing.
DISCUSSION OF TOP 5/follow up to discussion with Attorney Steve Mednick (if documentation received):
Commissioner Gaudreau reported Attorney Mednick had not been able to forward anything to the Commission for this meeting, but hoped to be able to send along some suggestions/recommendations by the following Wednesday.
The Commission reviewed again unlimited vs. a specific number of referendums required to pass the annual budget, and discussed the passage of the 2008- 2009 annual budget. Commissioner Thompson felt the town departments didn’t keep the public advised of budget changes as they work through the budget revisions; people can’t hear what the Commissioners say at meetings. Commissioner Riach noted all meetings between the Board of Selectmen and the Board of Finance are public meetings; anyone can attend to keep themselves updated. It was noted the public does not attend the budget meetings, board meetings, or hearings. Discussion continued regarding the difficulty presenting accurate information vs. the public’s perception of the information presented.
The Commission also discussed the position of Chief Financial Officer vs. Treasurer.
The Commission felt appropriate ballot questions might be:
· Automatic referendum
· Split budgets
· Unlimited referendums
· Approval of deletions/corrections
DISCUSSION OF TOP 5/(1) Review of present charter, and currently proposed changes for consistency, clarity, and compatibility.
See motion at beginning of meeting regarding Commission review of changes to date for future discussion
BRAINSTORM FOR ADDITIONAL ITEMS, NO COUNTER POINTS:
Nothing new presented.
2nd PUBLIC PARTICIPATION:
Kathy Pippin, requested to speak both as an East Windsor resident, and a Board of Finance alternate. Mrs. Pippin reported she goes to three or four commission/board meetings a week to see what is proposed for East Windsor. She has lived in town for 43 years and cares about the town. She reported the BOF has public input meetings; no one show up. People suggested two to four percent reductions, yet no one offers suggestions to the BOF. All the microphones in the world won’t help if no one shows up to talk. Mrs. Pippin cited the blogs on the JI online service, but people use pseudonyms and people can’t follow up with them to discuss the issues. Mrs. Pippin indicated she isn’t speaking for the Board of Finance, but
sharing her concerns and frustrations with the Commission.
GUIDANCE FOR NEXT MEETING:
Review of entire charter and revisions proposed.
MOTION: To ADJOURN this Meeting at 7:44 p.m.
Gaudreau moved/Philips seconded/VOTE: In Favor: Unanimous
Peg Hoffman, Recording Secretary, East Windsor Charter Revision Commission
FOR PUBLIC INFORMATION: