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Friday, December 7, 2012

Town Council Meets Monday – here is the REAL agenda

Agenda presented with items in the actual order they will be heard
CCA Councilors prepare for meeting
By Will Collette

As a continuing service to Progressive Charlestown readers, I’ve taken this month’s Town Council official agenda and rearranged it so you see the items in their actual presentation order. Every month, the Council changes its agenda, placing some items higher up and grouping other items into what’s called a “consent agenda.”

The consent agenda is supposed to be for noncontroversial items that the Council members can approve by consensus as a bloc. Included among these items is the likely reappointment of “Injun Joe”LarisaCharlestown’s Special Counsel for Indian Affairs, who is paid $25,000 a year just to watch to make sure the Narragansetts don’t do anything suspicious (or, for that matter, that they don't do anything at all).

Since the CCA firmly controls the Council now, with three CCA Council members (meaning they no longer need Lisa DiBello’s vote for control), Larisa is assured of reappointment since he is CCA’s darling and point guy on the CCA’s most important wedge issue.

In the now-routine executive session before the regular meeting, the Council will discuss the seemingly endless stream of lawsuits involving the town. Specifically, they will discuss the recent activity in the lawsuits involving the unpopular Whalerock industrial wind farm project (click here and here for recent Progressive Charlestown articles).

They will also review a pretty amazing list of ALL the pending litigation involving the town. (Click here for the full list.) Some of the suits go back quite a while. There is a 1999 case involving Evelyn Smith and several from 2005 and 2006. But most of the suits were initiated during the last Town Council’s term. Voters reelected the majority of the Council members on November 6.

Here is your UNOFFICIAL, but much more accurate, version of the Council’s Monday agenda.

The UNOFFICIAL Town Council Agenda for its December 10, 2012 meeting
The regular monthly meeting of the Charlestown Town Council will be held on December 10, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. at the Charlestown Town Hall, 4540 South County Trail, Charlestown, RI.  The proposed agenda is as follows:

1.      CALL TO ORDER, Moment of Silence, Pledge of Allegiance

2.      ROLL CALL
Motion to move item 8b to be heard next on the agenda.

b.   Discussion and potential action regarding topics for the Chariho Omnibus Meeting to be held on January 16, 2013

3.      PUBLIC COMMENT for items not on the Agenda



a.   Town Administrator
b.   Town Solicitor

a.   Discussion and potential action on Items for Washington County Regional Planning Council December meeting with state legislators. Current items are Affordable Housing one year moratorium on for profit comprehensive permits, reconstitution of the LMIH state study commission, removing State school mandates, and dredging Quonochontaug Pond

a.   Discussion and potential action regarding Council Rules and Regulations
c.   Discussion and potential action regarding authorizing the Town Clerk to write a letter to all Commission Chairs and inform them that if they have any important issues they believe requires a workshop with the Town Council to please request a workshop meeting
d.   Discussion and potential action regarding the reinstatement of the Town Council Workshops for Citizen Forums adopted by the Town Council in 2010

9.      PUBLIC HEARINGS - None

a.   Request from the G.J.S.I., INC, d/b/a G.J.S.I. Tavern and Inn for closure from November 29, 2012 through March 30, 2013.

12.    CONSENT AGENDA All items marked with “CA” are to be considered consent agenda
Motion to accept approve and place on file the following as the consent agenda: 11a, 11b, 13a, 13b 15a, 17a, 17b, 17c, 17d, 17e, 17f, 17g, 17h, 17j, 17k, 18a, 18b

“CA” a.  Application received from Small Axe Café for a General Entertainment License at 4820 Old Post Road on Sundays from 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
“CA” b.  Approval of events with a recommendation from the Parks and Recreation Commission, subject to review of contracts by the Town Solicitor, receipt of all applicable paperwork and insurance and that all event details be satisfactorily met by the Parks and Recreation Director:
1.   Animal Rescue League of Southern RI / 3rd Annual Bark in the Park Dog Walk
Ninigret Park Reservation: October 6, 2013
Event:  October 6, 2013
Camping: None
Insurance: $1 million
Fee: Waived (Commission Approved)
2.   Polar Plunge
Charlestown Town Beach Reservation: January 1, 2013
Event:  January 1, 2013
Camping: None
Insurance: $1 million
Fee: Waived (Commission Approved)

“CA” a.  Town Council Minutes: November 13, 2012; November 19, 2012 (Special/Executive)
“CA” b.  Reports: Building Official – October 2012, November 2012; Parks and Recreation Director – November 2012; Police Chief - October 2012, November 2012; Public Works Director – October 2012, November 2012; Town Clerk – November 2012; Treasurer – October 2012

“CA” a.  Resolution establishing uniform animal control fees

“CA” a.  Acceptance of the resignation of Paula Andersen from the Parks and Recreation Commission
“CA” b.  Acceptance of the resignation of George C. Tremblay from the Planning Commission
“CA” c.  Acceptance of the resignation of Constance D. Vadnais-Baker from the Affordable Housing Commission
“CA” d.  Discussion and potential action regarding the reappointment of Peter D. Ruggiero as Town Solicitor
“CA” e.  Discussion and potential action regarding the reappointment of Robert E. Craven as Assistant Town Solicitor and Probate Judge
“CA” f.  Discussion and potential action regarding the reappointment of Joseph Larisa as Assistant Solicitor for Indian Affairs
“CA” g.  Discussion and potential action regarding the reappointment of Margaret Lenihan Steele as Municipal Court Judge
“CA” h.  Reappointment of Linda Phillips, David Bailey and Richard Hosp to the Budget Commission, terms to expire in June of 2016.
“CA” j.   Appointment of Teresa Rose to the Parks and Recreation Commission, term to expire January 2016
“CA” k.  Acceptance of the resignation of James E. Sullivan from the Chariho Regional District School Committee with regret

“CA” a.  Request from Patricia M. Anderson, Acting Town Administrator for the approval of Sun Graphics as a sole source vendor based on the requirements of the Town Purchasing Manual, Section V. Special Procurements, A. Exclusive Service/Sole Source Vendor, for the purpose of printing the Pipeline.
“CA” b.  Request from the Tax Assessor for abatements in the amount of $7,532.21

a.   Board and Commission vacancies


i.    Discussion and potential action regarding the appointment of Council Liaisons to the following Commissions: Affordable Housing Commission, Agricultural Preservation, Budget Commission, Building Commission, Charlestown Historical Society, Chariho Act Revision Subcommittee, Coastal Pond Management Commission, Conservation Commission, Cross Mills’ Public Library Board of Trustees, Economic Improvement Commission, Investment Review Committee, Ocean Special Area Management Plan, Parks and Recreation Commission, Personnel Appeals Board, Planning Commission, Senior Citizens Commission, TE@CH (Targeting Excellence at Chariho – Performance Review Panel), Tri-Town Council Subcommittee, Washington County Regional Planning Council, Wastewater Management Commission, Zoning Board of Review

19.    LEGAL MATTERS - None