NOT APPROVED

 

TOWN OF PELHAM

PLANNING BOARD MEETING

September 15, 2003   

 

The Chairman, Paddy Culbert called the meeting to order at 7:30 pm.

 

The Secretary, Mr. Bill Scanzani, called the roll:

 

PRESENT:

Paddy Culbert, Bill Scanzani (arrived after the meeting had commenced), Peter McNamara, Henry DeLuca (arrived after the meeting had commenced), Gael Ouellette (arrived after the meeting had commenced), Robin Bousa, Selectmen Representative Hal Lynde (arrived after the meeting had commenced), Interim Planning Director Ben Frost

 

ABSENT:

 

Alternate Bob Yarmo, Alternate Raymond Brunelle

 

ADMINISTRATIVE

 

RFQ Interviews will be held as follows:

 

TFMoran Incorporated - Bedford, NH

 

Mr. Robert Cruess of TFMoran (current Town Engineer) presented information about TFMoran.  He discussed the types of projects they had been involved with in connection with Pelham.  He said they were proposing to fix their inspection rates, even if a senior person was reviewing the sites.  He said TFMoran would like to set up a guidelines committee (members of Planning Board and TFMoran) to work through issues and streamline the review process.  He ended by saying they would like to continue as a team with the Town.   

 

Mr. Bob Duvall, Chief Engineer - TFMoran, was new with the company.  He viewed TFMoran as a company that had a willingness to work with clients in many circumstances.  He discussed the short response time of employees.  He pointed out that TFMoran did not have the Department of Transportation or Federal Government as clients, and would therefore not have any conflicts.  Mr. Duvall discussed the types of services TFMoran could provide to the Town.

 

Mr. David Jordan of TFMoran discussed the projects TFMoran had been involved in during the past nine months as Town Engineer.  He explained the project review process.  He ended by saying he would be happy to attend not only the regular Planning Board meetings, but also the Work Sessions if requested. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked if the reporting structure was manageable.  Mr. Cruess explained that TFMoran initially had been told not to attend the Planning Board meetings, but when asked to appear, they began attending the meetings.  He believed that the Planning Board was viewed as the ‘boss’, unless authority had been delegated. 

 

Mr. McNamara asked if their little experience in town plan review was helpful, or a hindrance.  Mr. Cruess said TFMoran was selective, but had some experience.  He said they balanced their workload and subcontracted state/federal work to stay available for immediate response for local communities.  Mr. Jordan said that plans were being reviewed for compliance to the Town’s regulations.  He said they were not looking to redesign plans. 

 

Ms. Bousa discussed the pace that recent projects had been coming forth and TFMoran if they were comfortable with the current flow.  Mr. Jordan answered yes.  He felt the requests had been reasonable.  Ms. Bousa asked if TFMoran would be working solely for the Town and not do any development work without consent from the Planning Board.  Mr. Jordan answered yes. 

 

SEA Consultants Incorporated - Concord, NH

 

Mr. Jim Bolduc, Principal Engineer of SEA Consultants, Inc. provided a summary of the work SEA provided to various communities around the state.  He reviewed the services and benefits that SEA could customize and deliver to the Town.  He outlined the engineering consulting service process and the benefits of such. 

 

Mr. Ray Korber, Client Services Manager SEA Consultants, Inc. discussed SEA’s background and noted that they were handling the design bridge project on Tallant Road and Castle Hill Road.  He said they had numerous offices and could draw resources from each office to support the Town if needed.  He reviewed the project team services which included project management, technical disciplines, economic assessments, environmental assessments (through SMART Associates) and survey/traffic engineering. 

 

Mr. Scanzani wanted to know the timeline for initial plan review and re-review.  Mr. Bolduc said depending upon the complexity; initial reviews would take approximately seven to ten days.  He said re-reviews would take less time.  Mr. Scanzani asked if SEA had the capability to provide the Town with certain engineering study and review.  Mr. Korber answered yes.  He said economic research could also assist in any reviews. 

 

Mr. McNamara asked Mr. Korber who the American Slow Sand Association was, as referenced on his resume.  Mr. Korber said his area of expertise was water supply/treatment, therefore he was a member of the ASSA.  Mr. McNamara asked how many people would be working in Pelham.  Mr. Korber said the number of people could vary depending on the type of project.  Mr. McNamara wanted to know what guarantees there were that Pelham wouldn’t get overlooked because of being a small community.  Mr. Korber believed that SEA’s track record spoke for itself.  He said over 70% of SEA’s work was municipal engineering.  He said SEA worked hard to serve their clients, big or small.  Mr. Bolduc described the process of review when a plan was received. 

 

Mr. DeLuca asked if the same person would be sent to the field when reviewing one specific site, or if the inspector would be different people.  Mr. Bolduc said the person who attended the pre-construction meeting would be designated as the project representative from start to finish.  Mr. DeLuca asked if photographic examples of things such as drainage swales,  would be provided in the reports for the Board to review.  Mr. Korber said if requested, photographic examples from other communities could be provided. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked how inspections were approached to protect the Town.  Mr. Korber said that SEA had a well trained staff that dealt with contractors every day.  He said SEA checked the site both on a regular basis, and unscheduled to assure quality.  Mr. Lynde wanted to know how SEA insured that inspectors were doing their job.  Mr. Korber said he intermittently stopped at job sites, and sometimes would ride along with inspectors without prior notice.  Mr. Bolduc said during their hiring process, SEA checked references. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked if SEA performed core material testing.  Mr. Mr. Korber said an outside firm performed the work.  Mr. Bolduc said construction observation would be the responsibility of the developer/contractor, once a company was approved by the Town.  Mr. Scanzani asked if on-site facility engineering support (MEP) was provided.  Mr. Korber said SEA had architects on staff and MEP sub consultants that worked for them.  Mr. Scanzani asked if solid waste management was also handled.  Mr. Korber said they had that capability, on staff. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked how SEA insured that roadway construction was done properly.  Mr. Bolduc said that during preconstruction meeting the developer is told that SEA wants to be on-site during the beginning of each process to ensure the crew was capable to execute the work. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked how SEA ensured that a developer built a project per the plan.  Mr. Bolduc said at the end of the approval process one set of plans would be with the inspector, and one set would be at the office so they could be easily compared in the case of any differences on site.  He said the Town would be notified immediately if any differences are found. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked if SEA provided comments back to towns when conflicts were found in site review, or regulations.  Mr. Bolduc said SEA would provide guidance, and if requested, written language for town meeting approval. 

 

Vollmer Associates LLP - Concord, NH

 

Mr. Jerry Fortin and Mr. Bill Rollins of Vollmer Associates met with the Board and discussed the qualifications of Vollmer Associates.  Mr. Rollins said their office focused mainly on municipal work.  He named some of the towns that they worked in on a regular basis and the type of work done for each.  He said Vollmer would pledge not to accept private work once they committed to a town.  He said for a small office they had quick response.  Mr. Fortin explained the service capabilities of the company.  Mr. Rollins said that Vollmer used their Boston, MA office for traffic review, but used a local resident for projects in the area. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked what the time period was for initial plan review.  Mr. Fortin said an initial review could be done within a few days.  Mr. Scanzani asked if core materials testing were done in-house.  Mr. Fortin said typically it would be done by an outside lab that had been previously approved by the Town.  Mr. Rollins said they would try to be on-site when testing was done. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked what the approach was to protect the Town during review and development to ensure that the project was done as specified on the plan.  Mr. Rollins said first a preconstruction meeting was held and from that a procedure checklist was followed to make sure a developer understood what was expected.  He said Vollmer reserved the right to inspect the site unannounced.  He went on to discuss how field changes were handled; anything significant would be brought back to the Town, or the Board if needed.  Mr. Fortin said that a log was kept for each visit which included electronic photographs.  Mr. Lynde wanted to know how Vollmer insured that their inspectors were truly reviewing the sites.  Mr. Fortin said they hired quality people that did quality work.  Mr. Rollins said that all the construction logs were reviewed and if someone was not doing their job it would be apparent.  He said they also tried to maintain a working relationship with the Road Agent to keep the connection with the town.  Mr. Lynde asked how many towns Vollmer currently worked for.  Mr. Rollins said they currently worked for eight towns.  Mr. Lynde asked what Vollmer did in instances where a town’s regulations could be improved.  Mr. Fortin said in some instances they rewrote regulations to improve town situations. 

 

Ms. Bousa asked if one point person would be assigned to the Town.  Mr. Fortin said he would most likely be the person assigned.  Ms. Bousa asked if any of their clients met on Monday evening.  Mr. Fortin and Mr. Rollins answered no. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked if Vollmer ever got involved with helping towns with seeking grants.  Mr. Rollins said that his experience was with  transportation through the T21 program.  Mr. Fortin said that he had some experience approximately ten years ago.  He said through their Boston office they could pull resources to assist the Town.  Mr. Culbert asked how Vollmer worked with towns and developers to make a cohesive working environment.  Mr. Fortin said that expectations were set at the preconstruction meeting and carried through the project with open communication. 

 

Ms. Bousa asked if they had any environmental engineering.  Mr. Fortin said in their office they had a wetland scientist, which may also be a soil scientist if he passed the exam.  He said they had environmental staff in their Boston office. 

  

Defresne-Henry - Manchester, NH

 

Mr. Rene LaBranche, Mr. Dick Horvay and Ms. Lynette Carney met with the Board to discuss the qualifications of Defresne-Henry to represent the Town.  Mr. LaBranche provided background information and an overview of Defresne-Henry, who had been in business over fifty years.  He discussed the firm’s approach to meeting the needs of the Town through 1) ensuring the quality of new infrastructure (design & construction); 2) protect environment (reviews, implementation & enforcement); 3) provide experienced, capable staff for project designs, plan reviews, constructions services; 4) serve as the Town’s engineer, with whom Town Boards and Town officials can have a trusting and effective working relationship; 5) protect the interests of the Town; 6) provide big company resources with a small company approach.  Mr. LaBranche reviewed in depth the engineering services provided by Dufresne-Henry. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked how they approached inspections and verify/assure that they are done properly.  Mr. LaBranche said the important things were experience and training, both of which Defresne-Henry assure.  He said they also stick with a standard/systematic approach so inspectors and developers knew what would be expected.  He said that various tests and unscheduled inspections were done to also ensure that developers were doing work in accordance to the plans.  Mr. Lynde asked how they approached towns if improvements were needed in the town’s regulations.  Ms. Carney said as issues come up they are noted and tracked.  Mr. LaBranche said that towns generally wrote their own ordinances, but looked for input from the firm.  He said after a brief review of the Town’s ordinances he saw that the binder pavement was thin and suggested that it be thickened to withstand the construction phase of developments. 

 

Mr. McNamara asked who would be the contact person for Pelham.  Mr. Horvay said he would most likely be the contact person.  Mr. LaBranche made note of who the three field inspectors would be for the Town.  Mr. Horvay said who ever started the review process, they would follow through until the end. 

 

Mr. DeLuca asked if they provided photographic examples during the initial report phase.  Mr. LaBranche said they kept photographs for completed projects and said they could provide photographs of standard examples. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked where the erosion control people were located.  Mr. LaBranche said the environmental scientists were located in the Greenfield and Portland offices. 

 

Mr. LaBranche thanked the Board for meeting with them.     

 

The Louis Berger Group - Manchester, NH

 

Mr. Jerald Chase, Mr. Greg Lowrey, Mr. Doug Hjorth and Mr. Craig Wood met with the Board to discuss the qualifications of The Louis Berger Group.  Mr. Chase discussed his company and the reasons why Pelham should choose them as the Town’s engineering firm.  He provided the Board with written testimonials from towns that The Louis Berger Group was servicing.  He said their priority was the response  from the Town and providing recommendations so they could better their services.  He noted the number of people that work in the offices, who each had a certain area of expertise.  He said they provide consistent review and detailed reports. 

 

Mr. Joe Lowrey, Transportation Engineer, discussed the services provided by The Louis Berger Group.  He then reviewed the projects currently being handled.  He said he would be the primary contact for transportation related services. 

 

Mr. Craig Wood, Wetland Scientist, discussed the environmental staff and the work that they performed.  He noted that The Louis Berger Group was the largest cultural resources consulting firm in the nation.  Mr. Wood went on to explain the projects and studies they were involved with. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked what process what taken for inspection services.  Mr. Chase said a model of the required inspections would be  individually created for the community.  Mr. Lynde asked how they insured that the on-site inspector was getting the job done correctly and the developer was working per the plans.  Mr. Chase said testing would be performed and went on to provide examples of such. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked for their philosophy regarding mitigation, versus protecting existing wetlands.  Mr. Wood said he liked restoration of wetlands and went on to say that The Louis Berger Group generally got involved with large restoration projects.  He said they had been extremely successful in the wetland mitigation sites they had created.  He felt it would be necessary to identify and review the town wide natural resource inventory, and long term connectivity so that plans could be reviewed with that aspect in mind.  Mr. Chase said that that surrounding communities would also be reviewed for wildlife corridor connectivity. 

 

Ms. Bousa asked who would be attending the monthly meetings.  Mr. Chase said that more than one company representative would attend the meetings so the Board could draw from each person’s expertise.  Mr. DeLuca asked if trainees, or college graduates were hired.  Mr. Chase said they didn’t have people at the entry level. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked if town regulations would be reviewed, and if so, how did they make recommendations for changes.  Mr. Chase said that they reviewed the regulations for good engineering practices.  He said they provided recommendations, but ultimately changes would be up to the Town based upon their long term goals. 

 

MINUTES REVIEW

 

August 4, 2003

MOTION:

(Scanzani/Ouellette) To approve the August 4, 2003 Planning Board minutes as amended.

 

VOTE:

 

(6 - 0 - 1) The motion carries.  Ms. Bousa abstained.

 

 

August 18, 2003

MOTION:

(McNamara/Ouellette) To approve the August 18, 2003 Planning Board minutes as amended.

 

VOTE:

 

(3 - 0 - 4) The motion carries.  Mr. Scanzani, Mr. DeLuca, Ms. Bousa and Mr. Lynde abstained.

 

 

August 25, 2003

MOTION:

(Ouellette/McNamara) To approve the August 25, 2003 Planning Board minutes as amended.

 

VOTE:

 

(5 - 0 - 2) The motion carries.  Ms. Bousa and Mr. Lynde abstained.

 

 

September 4, 2003 - deferred to the next scheduled meeting.

 

 

REQUEST FOR NON-PUBLIC SESSION

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/McNamara) Request for a non-public session per RSA 91-A:3,II

 

ROLL CALL:

 

Paddy Culbert-Yes, Bill Scanzani-Yes, Peter McNamara-Yes, Henry DeLuca-Yes, Gael Ouellette-Yes, Robin Bousa-Yes, Selectmen Representative Hal Lynde-Yes

 

Mr. Culbert noted that when the Board returned, after the non-public session, the Board would not take any other action publicly, except to seal the minutes of the non-public session and to adjourn the meeting.  The Board entered into a non-public session at approximately 10:40 pm.  Also present was Interim Planning Director Ben Frost.

 

The Board returned to public session at approximately       pm.

 

MOTION:

 

(         ) To seal the minutes of the non-public session indefinitely.

 

VOTE:

 

(      ) The motion carries.

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

MOTION:

(  ) To adjourn the meeting.

 

VOTE:

 

(    ) The motion carries. 

 

The meeting was adjourned at approximately   pm.

                                                                                          Respectfully submitted,

 

                                                                                          Charity A. L. Willis

                                                                                          Recording Secretary