The Litchfield Budget Committee held a meeting at Town Hall on April 22, 2021 at 7pm. The current members are Andrew Cutter (Chair), John David Son (Vice Chair), Keri Douglas, William Hayes, Derek Barka, Scott Taylor, Kate Stevens, Christina Harrison (School Board Representative), and Robert Leary (Selectmen Representative).
Mrs. Jen Bourque commented that she had contacted Mr. Cutter about a vacancy on the board and disagreed that only Mr. Scott Taylor was being considered tonight for the position. She stressed that her disagreement is with the process of filling the vacancy, not Mr. Taylor. She requested the committee to post the vacancy and consider all applicants next meeting. Later in the meeting she thanked the committee for discussing the process in which vacancies are filled and suggested considering looking at the bylaws in a “can we do this” rather than “should we do this” way moving forward.
Mrs. Michelle Flynn had emailed the committee but did not wish for it to be read. She also disagreed with the process being followed to fill the vacancy.
Mr. Scott Taylor expressed interest in the vacant position and believes his past performance on the committee shows he is well suited for the position.
Open Position Appointment
The committee discussed the process to fill the open seat. It was determined all bylaws have been followed correctly and while in the past it was the will of the committee to post an open position for applicants concurrently, it is not required. Mr. Scott Taylor was appointed to the Budget Committee for a one year term with a vote of 7-1-0.
- Town Business Report provided by Mr. Leary
- Paving by Continental Paving to begin. Town Administrator Troy Brown worked with the Town of Hudson to pay to pave their portion of Page Rd at the same time to keep the entire road length in good condition.
- Conservation Commission elected Matt Lepore as Chair and welcome new member Jayson Brennan
- Painting of old Town Hall to begin soon
- School Business Report provided by Mrs. Harrison
- Estimated CARES funds for ventilation, targeted programming, mediation to close education gaps over the past year, technology improvements. Potential to cover new LMS roof, main office improvements, and kitchen expansion. A list of year to date expenses to be provided to the committee.
- 5th grade portables to be removed. Estimated $44k/yr savings in energy costs and improves student safety
- School meals still being reimbursed by federal government but food services is working at a deficit due to loss of revenue from reduced snacks and a la carte sales
- Capital Improvement Committee Update provided by Mr. Cutter
- CIP discussed the use of funds from the American Rescue Plan
- Chief Sargent presented an update on a grant for the police department
- Facilities Improvement update provided by Mr. Son
- Met and reviewed a thermal imaging report that showed the inefficiencies in the school buildings, LMS HVAC system
- Discussed GMS architect next steps
Public Input Member Input / New Business –
The 2021-2022 Budget Committee calendar was approved by a vote of 8-0-0.
The Budget Committee Bylaws were discussed and expected to be updated at the next meeting to clarify the notification of previous candidates when a seat becomes vacant on the committee. Social media responses by the social media archivist position will also be clarified. The committee will review the bylaws at the May meeting.
The committee went into non-public session and adjourned from there.
Next Budget Committee meeting is Thursday, May 27, 2021 at 7pm.
Residents are encouraged to attend Budget Committee meetings by webex or phone. Remote attendance information can be found on meeting agendas posted to the Town’s webpage. Public input is also invited via email to Andrew Cutter at firstname.lastname@example.org. Emails must include the commenter’s first and last name and address.
As a reminder, Budget Committee responses to posts on social media are not permitted. Past meetings can be viewed on the LitchfieldTV Youtube channel