One Thousand Thirty Two citizens participated in this year’s Town Meeting Referendum. Every warrant article passed. Brad Harriman defeated incumbent Chuck Storm 64%-36%.
ARTICLE 1: ELECTION OF TOWN OFFICERS
Selectman Brad Harriman 3-Years 623
Charles “Chuck” Storm 355
Treasurer John C. Burt 1-Year 858
Trustee of Trust Funds Richard Shurtleff 3-Years 815
Budget Committee Matthew Krause 3-Years 758
Frank Giebutowski 697
Robert “Bob” Tougher 673
Library Trustee Linda Matchett 3-Years 815
Police Commissioner Ron Goodgame 3-Years 846
Planning Board Katherine Barnard 3-Years 774
Paul O’Brien 701
ARTICLE 2: CHANGE OF USE—ALL COMMERCIAL DISTRICTS
To amend the zoning ordinance to allow in all commercial zoning districts the conversion of one permitted use to another where there is no change to the exterior of the building or parking upon only the issuance of a change of use permit and compliance with all applicable building and life safety codes.
ARTICLE 3: RESIDENTIAL LOT COVERAGE—LOTS EQUAL TO OR SMALLER THAN 0.25 ACRES
To amend the zoning ordinance to increase the permitted lot coverage of all lots smaller than 0.25 acres to 40% in all ResidentialZoning Districts except Shoreland Residential.
ARTICLE 4: CHANGES TO DEFINITIONS
To amend the zoning ordinance by changing the definition of “lot coverage” to include the total area covered by all impervioussurfaces and to add a definition of “impervious surfaces” as a modified surface that cannot effectively absorb or infiltrate water.
ARTICLE 5: CENTER STREET RECONSTRUCTION
This article requests a total appropriation of $2.1 million, of which the Town’s share of $700,000 is proposed to be bonded, and the remaining amount will be reimbursed to the Town by the NH Department of Transportation. These funds will be used for the reconstruction of Center Street (Route 28) from South Main Street to Wolfeboro Falls, including new roadway surfaces, sidewalks, drainage improvements, and intersection improvements.
• 3/5 Majority Vote Required
ARTICLE 6: SEWER COLLECTION SYSTEM UPGRADES
This article seeks approval for bonding in the amount of $400,000 to design and construct upgrades to the Town’s sewer collection system to reduce infiltration and inflow of water into the sewer system. This is part of the Town’s ongoing efforts to repair and maintain the Town’s sewer collection system to reduce excessive groundwater infiltration into the sewer system and reduce the operational costs of having to treat and dispose of that additional water along with actual wastewater.
• 3/5 Majority Vote Required
ARTICLE 7: PUBLIC WORKS GARAGE UPGRADES
This article seeks the appropriation of $400,000, of which $299,400 will be bonded and the balance of $100,600 will be transferred from an existing Capital Reserve Account, to make needed improvements to the Public Works Garage facilities on Pine Hill Road. These improvements include installing a new hydraulic truck lift and replacing the fuel pumps and fuel delivery system with one that meets current regulatory requirements. In addition, this article, in combination with an anticipated insurance settlement, will give the Department of Public Works the ability to remedy the damages caused by the fire at the DPW garage on January 29th, which badly damaged the 5-bay heated Highway Garage facility.
• 3/5 Majority Vote Required
ARTICLE 8: CONSTRUCT PARKS MAINTENANCE BUILDING
This article requests approval for bonding $200,000 to construct a 3,000 square ft. maintenance building for the Parks and Recreation Department’s Maintenance Division to serve as storage for the Department’s trucks, equipment and supplies, and suitable heated workspace for the Department’s maintenance staff. This new maintenance building will replace six old structures on the site, one of which was already demolished last year due to excessive mold issues, which all together combined only provided 1,600 square feet of storage space.
• 3/5 Majority Vote Required
ARTICLE 9: 2013 OPERATING BUDGET
Shall the Town raise and appropriate as an operating budget, not including appropriations by special warrant articles and other appropriations voted separately, the amounts set forth on the budget posted with the warrant or as amended by the vote of the first session, for the purposes set forth therein totaling $26,163,872. Should this article be defeated the operating budget shall be $25,331,916, which is the same as last year, with certain adjustments required by the previous action of the Town or by law; or the governing body may hold one special meeting, in accordance with RSA 40:13, X and XVI, to take up the issue of a revised operating budget only.
ARTICLE 10: TOWN ROAD UPGRADES
This is the annual warrant article for reconstructing and resurfacing Town roads and improving their drainage. It has been increased to $600,000 this year from $550,000 last year to allow more work on Town roads. The Town roads presently programmed for improvements in 2013 are:
- Cotton Valley Road–Overlay
- Pork Hill Road—Reclaim, Regrade, Base Pave, Drainage
- Percy Drive—Shim Overlay, Drainage
- Interlakes Way—Shim Overlay
- Stoneham Road—Shim Overlay, Drainage
- Pleasant Valley Road—Chip Seal (portion only)
ARTICLE 11: MIDDLETON ROAD—DESIGN OF IMPROVEMENTS
$50,000-General Fund, $100,000-NHDOT reimbursement
This article seeks a total appropriation of $150,000, of which $50,000 is the Town’s share of the project and the balance will be reimbursed to the Town by the NH Department of Transportation. These funds will be used to design improvements to Middleton Road from its intersection with Route 28 to the New Durham town line, including new roadway surface and drainage. This design will become the basis for bidding out the construction of these improvements in the next phase of the project. The article also seeks authority for the Town to acquire Middleton Road from the State of New Hampshire after completion of these designed improvements and the State of NH signing a project agreement to fund the improvements, after which it will be maintained by the Town as a Class V highway.
ARTICLE 12: ADA PARKING LOT IMPROVEMENTS AT TOWN HALL
This article seeks the appropriation of $100,000 to reconstruct the parking lots in front of and behind the Town Hall so as to bring them into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), as required to complete the settlement agreement between the Town and the U.S. Department of Justice.
ARTICLE 13: ELECTRIC METER UPGRADES
This article calls for $720,000 to be spent from the fund balance of the Electric Fund over the next 5 years for purposes of replacing all 5,600 electric meters with new radio read electric meters. These new electric meters will eliminate the need for each meter to be manually read by a meter reader each month. The efficiencies and related savings to be realized by the Electric Department in terms of reduced staffing, vehicles, and fuel consumption promise that this project will pay for itself by the end of the sixth year after we start this project. This project will not result in any increase in tax rates or electric rates.
ARTICLE 14: PURCHASE REPLACEMENT BUCKET TRUCK FOR ELECTRIC DEPARTMENT
This article seeks approval to use $225,000 from the fund balance of the Electric Fund to purchase a new bucket truck for the Electric Department. This new truck will replace ME-3, a 1997 bucket truck, with 125,914 miles and 13,833 hours of operational use on it. This acquisition will not result in any increase in tax rates or electric rates.
ARTICLE 15: TOWN LIBRARY AND LIBBY MUSEUM BUILDINGS MAINTENANCE
This article requests $100,000 to address mechanical and structural problems at the Wolfeboro Public Library and the Libby Museum. Toward the end of last year issues arose with both facilities. The heating and cooling system at the Public Library is at the end of its useful life, and its controls need to be replaced with a more modern system. Possible structural issues at the Libby Museum are causing excessive moisture and cracking of walls. This appropriation will enable the replacement of HVAC controls at the Library and extensive evaluation of structural issues at the Libby Museum, which will result in plans and cost estimates being developed to address the issues at the Libby Museum.
ARTICLE 16: PUBLIC WORKS VEHICLE AND EQUIPMENT CAPITAL RESERVE ACCOUNT
The Department of Public Works requests the appropriation of $160,000 to be placed in the Public Works Vehicle and Equipment Capital Reserve Account. By making annual contributions to this Capital Reserve Account, it enables the Town to avoid the budgetary spikes that otherwise occur when major capital vehicles and equipment needs to be replaced. In 2013 the purchases of a dump truck, a pickup truck, a sidewalk plow (to replace one damaged in the fire), and a Solid Waste bailer costing $460,000 in total are planned to be made from this account.
ARTICLE 17: FIRE TRUCKS AND APPARATUS REPLACEMENT CAPITAL RESERVE
The Fire/Rescue Department seeks the appropriation of $176,000 which will be placed in the Fire Trucks and Apparatus Replacement Capital Reserve Account. By setting funds aside in this manner on an annual basis, sufficient funds will be available for the Fire Department to make its next scheduled major apparatus replacements. In 2013, the purchase of a new fire engine costing $425,000 is planned to be made from this account.
ARTICLE 18: TOWN OFFICE FACILITY CAPITAL RESERVE ACCOUNT
This article requests the appropriation of $100,000 to be place in the existing Town Office Facility Capital Reserve Account. While no specific major improvements or repairs at Town Hall are planned in 2013 from this account, these funds will provide a reserve that can be called on in case emergency repairs are needed during the year. It will also provide a means of saving toward the eventual costs of renovating the Town Offices at Town Hall.
ARTICLE 19: ESTABLISH ABENAKI SKI AREA CAPITAL RESERVE FUND
This article seeks to establish a new capital reserve fund for the purpose of purchasing or repairing snowmaking equipment, the groomer, light poles and mechanical, electrical, and safety equipment at the Abenaki Ski Area. It further seeks the appropriation of $15,250 to be placed in this new capital reserve fund.
ARTICLE 20: AFSCME CONTRACT AGREEMENT
This article requests funding for the first year of a new 2-year contract agreement with the AFSCME bargaining unit. It covers most of the unionized, non-exempt employees of the Department of Public Works, Parks and Recreation Maintenance, and many of the Town’s administrative staff. It provides those employees with a wage increase of $0.50 per hour, but no step increases during the term of the contract. It also provides those employees who receive stand-by pay an increase of $5 per day. In exchange, these employees agreed to changes in health insurance plans which enabled the Town to achieve significant savings in its health insurance costs.
ARTICLE 21: POLICE UNION CONTRACT AGREEMENT
This article seeks to fund the first year of a new 2-year collective bargaining agreement with the Police Union, which represents both the uniformed officers and dispatchers. The new contract calls for a 2% cost of living increase in 2013 for all members of the unit, plus five employees who will also receive a 3.5% step increase. This group of employees also agreed to changes in health insurance plans which enabled the Town to achieve significant savings in its health insurance costs. These changes in the Police Union Contract were approved by both the Police Commission and Board of Selectmen.
ARTICLE 22: SUNDAY ACTIVITIES ORDINANCE
This article proposes to amend the Town’s depression-era blue laws, so that many of the activities currently taking place on Sundays are no longer in violation of the Town’s ordinance. This includes retail business operations, sporting events and games, concerts, etc. so long as the general public’s peace and quiet are not unreasonably disturbed.
ARTICLE 23: PETITION WARRANT ARTICLE
The following article was submitted by citizens petition:
To see if the Town will vote to require that all votes of the governing body and budget committee relative to budget items or any warrant article shall be recorded votes and the numerical tally of any such vote shall be printed in the town warrant next to the affected warrant article and further to require that the annual budget and all special warrant articles having a tax impact, as determined by the governing body, shall contain a notation stating the estimated tax impact of the article in accordance with RSA 40:13 V (a).