BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT: Michelle Cherrier, Chair, Dummerston; Patrick Moreland, Brattleboro; Cheryl Franklin, Guilford; Lewis Sumner, Halifax; Greg Meulemans, Jamaica; Dan Toomey, Putney; James Damato, Readsboro; Russ Hodgkins, Westminster; Nancy Meinhard, Wardsboro; and Merrill Mundell, Wilmington

BOARD MEMBERS ABSENT: Peter Elwell, Brattleboro; David Jones, Brookline; Daniel Baliotti, Dover; Kevin Stine, Dover; Lester Dunklee, Dummerston; Sheila Morse, Guilford; Cara Cheyette, Halifax; Tony Gordon, Marlboro; Stillman Vonderhorst, Marlboro; Shannon Meckle, Newfane; Mike Fitzpatrick, Newfane; Robert Matte, Readsboro; Kent Young, Stratton; Irvin Stowell, Townshend; Christopher Parker, Vernon; Emily Vergobbe, Vernon; and Tom Consolino, Wilmington

WSWMD STAFF PRESENT: Bob Spencer, Executive Director; Athena Lee Bradley, Programs Manager; Dale Bessette, Transfer Station and Compost Facility Operator; and Minnie Boadu-Bennett, District Clerk


Note: Mr. Spencer opened the teleconference line at 7:01 pm and Mr. Damato announced himself. The line remained open until Mr. Damato, the sole participant, departed at 8:19.

Ms. Cherrier called meeting to order at 7:02 PM.

  1. Changes and/or Additions to Agenda: None.
  2. Annual Reorganization:
    1. Introduction of New Supervisors: Ms. Cherrier introduced the new supervisor from Jamaica, Mr. Greg Meulemans.
    2. Election of Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer, and Clerk:

Mr. Damato moved to elect Ms. Cherrier for Chair of the Board, Mr. Moreland seconded, and Ms. Cherrier was elected unanimously (10 votes).

Mr. Damato moved to elect Mr. Moreland for Vice-Chair of the Board, Mr. Sumner seconded, and Mr. Moreland was elected unanimously (10 votes).

Mr. Damato moved to elect Ms. Hayes for Treasurer. There was no second, and the motion failed. The board discussed the possibility that there might be restrictions on employees serving in that capacity.

Ms. Meinhard moved to elect Ms. Bennett for District Clerk, Mr. Mundell seconded, and Ms. Bennett was elected District Clerk (10 votes).

    1. Re-Establish Executive Board:
      1. Ms. Cherrier confirmed that the Executive Board will comprise the Chair and Vice-Chair of the board, as well as the chairs of each committee.
    2. Confirm Establishment of Committees: Finance, Personnel/Policy
      1. The board confirmed the need to maintain a Finance Committee and a Personnel/Policy Committee.
    3. Designation of Meeting Place, Dates, and Time:

Mr. Mundell moved the board conduct regular meetings 10 months out of the year (January, March, April, May, June, August, September, October, November, and December), on the second Thursday of the month, at 7:00 p.m., at the District headquarters on Old Ferry Road in Brattleboro. Mr. Damato seconded, and the motion passed (10 votes).

    1. Designation of Official Newspaper:

Mr. Mundell moved to designate The Commons and The Deerfield Valley News as Official newspapers for the district. Mr. Sumner seconded, and the motion passed (10 votes).

    1. Legal Opinion on Quorum: Mr. Spencer reviewed the situation regarding quorum determinations, and read the legal opinion provided by Mr. Daniel Richardson. Because quorum is defined in the charter as the presence of representatives for greater than 50% of member towns with an appointed representative, and Somerset is a non-voting beneficiary of the district, it is not used to determine quorum. There are currently 17 member towns with appointed representatives, thus quorum will be the presence of supervisors representing at least nine towns.
  1. Approval of Minutes— February 14, 2019:

Mr. Damato moved to approve the minutes of February 14, 2019 as presented. Mr. Hodgkins seconded, and the motion passed (9 votes). Mr. Meulemans abstained.

  1. Approval of Minutes— March 14, 2019:

Mr. Hodgkins moved to approve the minutes of March 14, 2019 as presented. Mr. Sumner seconded, but no vote was taken.

Mr. Mundell amended the motion with a direction to include a statement after the attendance section that “The Chair determined there might not be a quorum present.” Mr. Toomey seconded the amended motion, and the motion passed (7 votes). Mr. Meulemans, Mr. Damato and Ms. Franklin abstained.

  1. Approval of Check Register— February 2019

Mr. Damato moved to approve the check register of February 2019 as presented. Ms. Franklin seconded, and the motion passed (9 votes). Mr. Meulemans abstained.

  1. Approval of Check Register— March 2019

Mr. Damato moved to approve the check register of March 2019 as presented. Mr. Mundell seconded, and the motion passed (9 votes). Mr. Meulemans abstained.

  1. Approval of Financial Report— February 2019

Mr. Damato moved to approve the financial reports of February 2019, as presented. Mr. Sumner seconded, and the motion passed (9 votes). Mr. Meulemans abstained.

  1. Approval of Financial Report— March 2019: Ms. Cherrier reviewed the financial report for the board. Mr. Moreland requested a finance committee meeting next month. Ms. Meinhard asked about rent payments from Sky Solar Holdings. Mr. Spencer reported that SSH has been timely with lease payments, and funds from sale of RECs are forthcoming.

Mr. Mundell moved to approve the financial reports of March 2019, as presented. Mr. Moreland seconded, and the motion passed (9 votes). Mr. Meulemans abstained.

  1. Review Draft Agreement With Town of Winhall Regarding Their Legal Obligation to Pay Withdrawal Costs: Mr. Spencer reviewed the purpose and process for drafting an MOU for “the Withdrawal of the Town of Winhall from the Windham Solid Waste Management District.” Mr. Mundell requested the agreement be reviewed for typos. Mr. Toomey remembered that there was a video taping of the Winhall meeting.

Mr. Hodgkins moved to accept this document, corrected for spelling and grammar, and give the Chair authority to adjust the dates pending review of meeting records from Winhall. Mr. Mundell seconded, and the motion passed (10 votes).

  1. Consider Bids for HHW Collection: Ms. Bradley reported that WSWMD received two proposals for HHW collection: NRC and Heritage Environmental Services. The district provided each with last year’s invoice for the Brattleboro collection to determine their pricing estimates for the site. Ms. Bradley requested the board give staff the authority to enter negotiations to ensure the timing of a June collection. Mr. Moreland requested a memo summarizing the proposals and asked what negotiations might be necessary. Ms. Bradley explained the need to coordinate start dates and the possibility of satellite collections.

Mr. Moreland moved that pending reference review, staff will develop an HHW program for the next year that satisfies our obligations under the SWIP and maintains the program reasonably within the budget for that purpose. Mr. Hodgkins seconded, and the motion passed (10 votes).

  1. Consider Bids for Trommel Screen: Mr. Spencer reviewed the 5 trommel screen proposals received and recommended the Komptech Primus at a cost of $168,520, with 2 months of rent at $9,310/month applied to purchase price, for a total of $149,900.

Ms. Meinhard moved to accept the bid from Simplicity Engineering for the Komtech Primus. Mr. Mundell seconded, and the motion passed (10 votes).

  1. Discuss Takeaways From Flow Control Presentation at 2/14/19 Meeting: Hearing no proponents, the board will no longer consider flow control for the district.
  2. Programs Manager Report: Ms. Bradley reported on the following: working with Wardsboro school on food scraps collection; continued work with Strolling of the Heifers and Elm City Compost on zero-waste programming, educational materials, and volunteer recruitment (ECC will be primarily responsible for volunteers); revising the rental agreement for zero-waste stations and creating additional training materials for event organizers; meeting with a Matt Libby from Helpsy to discuss expanding textile recycling in the region; a backyard composting workshop she will run with the Brown Bag Lunch program at the end of April, and potentially soon in Putney, Dummerston and Halifax; writing an article of WSWMD updates for the Dummerston newsletter (she offers the same to supervisors from other towns); developing a list of C&D recycling haulers and sites in VT and surrounding area for construction firms with questions about upcoming legal mandates; the new district website, which should roll out next month; taking a HAZWOPER refresher course; and her food scraps diversion for residents presentation and community composting workshop delivered at the Vermont Organics Recycling Summit, which were well attended and well received. She and Mr. Spencer confirmed for Mr. Mundell that the district is still working with Twin Valley School after Whitingham’s departure. Ms. Cherrier requested the website have a library where supervisors can download documents like Ms. Bradley’s write up of her Programs Manager report.
  3. Executive Director Report: Mr. Spencer reported on the following: the panel presentation on curbside compost at the Vermont Organics Recycling Summit; a drop in cardboard price; an increase in compost sales; the benefit of having a trommel screen permanently on site for compost management and sales; increased work on compost marketing; meeting with Vernon to discuss ACT 148 organics requirements; working with a Brattleboro electronics recycling collection company; the closure of the unattended 24/7 recycling center in Wilmington; a recycling cost analysis for Halifax; the hiring of Anita Grant part time for the transfer station; and the status of the solar project, including continued work on stormwater management.
  4. Executive Session (if needed): None
  5. Other Business as Legally Allowed: None
  6. Adjournment: Adjourned at 8:30 pm.

Minnie Boadu-Bennett, District Clerk