Monday, June 29, 2015

Monday Morning Select Board Meeting

Aaron Hayden appears before Amherst Select Board this morning

After coming out of a closed door meeting with the Town Manager and spying the media present -- all two of us -- Select Board Chair Alisa Brewer quickly changed the location of the posted meeting from the Town Manager's private office on the 3rd floor to the usual, more spacious, 2nd floor Town Room.

Cable access entity Amherst Media was Missing In Action, so the full one hour meeting was not live streamed or recorded.

First up former Select Board Chair Aaron Hayden representing Amherst College came to request a road work permit to install a fiber optic cable to their building at 271 South Pleasant Street.

Since this was only a "modification of an existing permitted system" the board did not have to hold an official "public hearing" to take public comment, not that Amherst College ever has much problems with NIMBYs.

The Select Board, keepers of the public way, quickly gave the request their unanimous approval

The Select Board then discussed the recent public forum regarding the North Amherst intersection, with Doug Slaughter calling the meeting,  "A good initial start to the process, but there's a lot of work left to do."

The Public Works Committee is planning to hold two meetings to discuss the intersection before making a recommendation to the Select Board, who has final authority.  One idea they will look at is to add a stop sign on Sunderland Road heading north where it intersects with Montague Road.

Stop sign on Sunderland Road is one possible idea for upper intersection

Town Manger Musante said there is one easy quick fix that can be implemented at the southernmost intersection of Meadown/Pine and North Pleasant by simply adjusting the cycle of the traffic control lights.

The Select Board will get recommendations from the Planning Board, Public Works Committee and Transportation Plan Task Force at their 8/31 meeting.

Before hearing the Town Manger's Report the board confirmed a bevy of committee appointments -- all by unanimous vote.

Although Chair Alisa Brewer stated the town was "struggling with many vacancies now," and that even with 16 appointments they just confirmed,  there was still a "significant hole to fill."

The Town Manager had good news for the Select Board telling them he was recently reelected Chair of the Pioneer Valley Transport Authority through 2017.  The PVTA is a critical component in the town's transportation system.

The Town Manager then reminded the Select Board he would be at the Kennedy School of Government for a three week training program July 6 through July 24th, and that Assistant Town Manager David Ziomek will be in charge of day-to-day operations in his absence.

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