The Board meets on the first and third Monday of each month. Meetings begin at 1:00 p.m. and are held in the department conference room at 65 Lafayette Ave, Littleton. Board meetings are open to the public and time is allotted for public comments at each meeting.
The regularly scheduled Board of Commissioners (BOC) meeting began at 1:00 p.m. on Tuesday, July 6, 2010 in the Littleton Water and Light Department (LWL) conference room. Present were Commissioner Eddy Moore, Commissioner Perry Goodell and Commissioner Ralph Ross, Financial Services Director Cheryl Wilkins and Superintendent Thomas Considine.
The minutes of June 21, 2010 regularly scheduled Commissioners meeting were reviewed. Commissioner Goodell made a motion to accept the minutes as presented, seconded by Commissioner Ross.
The vote was in favor 3-0-0.
Mr. Bruce Hadlock addressed the BOC and expressed his dissatisfaction with the progress being made to replace the fire hydrant that was damaged by a motor vehicle accident near his 512 Meadow Street business. Mr. Hadlock stated that the Littleton Police record shows that the accident happened on June 15, 2010 and that the hydrant was removed at that time and has not been replaced and Mr. Hadlock alleges that the Department is not being “responsible”. When he called to make an inquiry last week he was told that the new hydrant replacement had not been scheduled. He further stated that it was over 1,000 feet to the closest hydrant and that is unacceptable and “demanded” that the BOC direct management to install the new hydrant “now” and that he had heard enough excuses why it has not been done.
Commissioner Moore asked Superintendent Considine to explain the Departments side of this situation.
Superintendent Considine stated that the hydrant had to be removed from service because of suspected damage to the base of the hydrant resulting from the accident. The hydrant was sheared off at ground level and the hydrant barrel twisted on the supply line that most likely compromised the entire hydrant. Pressurizing the hydrant without first inspecting the connection to ensure that it was structurally sound would not have been prudent decision.
This is the same information that was portrayed to Mr. Hadlock when he called the Department on Wednesday, June 30, 2010 and verbally threatened to sue the Department if anything were to happen.
The reasons were explained to Mr. Hadlock as to why the fire hydrant work was not scheduled until this week. LWL crews have been busy with other work such as the Highland Street culvert replacement preparation work, a major water main leak on Meadow Street near Staples and limited staffing through the July 4th holiday. The repair/ replacement are presently scheduled for Thursday, July 8, 2010.
In this particular situation the hydrant in front of Applebee’s is capable of providing more than 1,300 GPM and in the Departments opinion can provide adequate protection. In the Department opinion, being able to repair or replace the hydrant (if needed) within a month of the accident was a reasonable expectation.
A lengthy debate ensued between the BOC and Mr. Hadlock as to how soon following an incident that a hydrant needs to be replaced. Mr. Hadlock stated that he was not told during his telephone call last week that the hydrant had been scheduled for replacement and left the meeting.
Superintendent Considine stated that each incident/ accident is different as each situation is unique and the repairs vary. Most hydrants have overlapping areas of coverage that take into account the removal of a particular hydrant from service.
The BOC agreed with the Departments assessment of this particular situation and that there was no need to create a policy for fire hydrant replacement at this time as each situation is different and that there are many variables to consider.
FINANCIAL DIRECTORS REPORT:
Mrs. Wilkins reviewed the financial statements for the month ended May 2010 with the Commissioners. Several discrepancies as compared to budget were discussed and explained by Mrs. Wilkins. The electric division’s small tools line item is significantly over budget as a direct result of safety climbing gear recently purchased.
Superintendent Considine stated that he advised Operations Manager that the purchase of items considered small tools/parts would be significantly restricted to what is really needed for the remainder of the year.
SUPERINTENDENT/ MANAGERS REPORT:
1. The recent power supply purchase for 2012 – 2013 was discussed with the BOC. The purchase came in $500,000 less when compared to the current power supply budget and is with Florida Power and Light (NextEra Energy).
2. The BOC reviewed the data prepared by the Department in regard to the 2009 Running Water Program and agreed to submit it to the Board of Selectmen as requested in their June 21, 2010 correspondence.
3. The BOC reviewed and discussed the results of the NHDES water system sanitary survey recently completed by NHDES personnel every five (5) years. The NHDES found NO functional problems and complimented the Department in several areas of administrative support and operations. One area that was identified as a “needs improvement” was the new requirement to provide a chlorination point at the Brickyard Well.
Commissioner Ross inquired how the Department planned to install a permanent and functional chlorine injection port for the Brickyard Well as chlorine tends to crystallize when not regularly used.
Superintendent Considine stated that the chlorine solution would have to be diluted significantly to prevent that from happening. In order to get credit for a permanent chlorination port the pump line needs to be connected at all times, currently the lines are connected when the pump is operated to prevent the crystallization from taking place.
Commissioner Moore stated that the Littleton Zoning Board of Adjustment voted to rehear the proposed Highland Croft blasting project due to the regional impact that the project potentially has and on the advice from legal counsel.
The BOC reviewed and discussed a Notice of Claim letter submitted by Liberty Mutual in regard to an alleged faulty water meter installation when the water service was restored to a customer’s home. The document will be submitted to the Local Government Center for resolution.
1. Commissioner Goodell asked if the Department has any information in regard to the incident that happened in Salem, NH where an electric customer was disconnected for non-payment and was found dead in her home. The death was allegedly attributed to the persons having a medical condition that required constant electrical supply.
Mrs. Kenney stated that the Department recently received a doctor’s letter in regard to a potential LWL customer “that would suffer serious health hazards by disconnection of electrical service”, but had not heard anything else in regard to the Salem incident other than what was on the television.
The BOC agree that the Department exercise due diligence and error on the side of caution when this type of situation presents itself.
2. The BOC discussed a recent offer to buy out Fair Points (FP) outstand unsecured debit service ( $6,800) that it has with the Department’s for $ 0.82 on the dollar. FP total debit to the Department is in excess of $19,000.
The BOC agreed that unless the offer exceeds $0.90 that the Department would not sell its FP debit.
Commissioner Goodell made a motion to adjourn the meeting, seconded by
The vote was in favor 3-0-0.
Meeting adjourned at 2:35 p.m.
The regularly scheduled Commissioner’s meeting is held twice monthly on the first and third Monday, at 1:00 p.m., in the Department’s conference room.