SHORT SUMMARY:

The next RTM meeting is Tuesday, January 9th at 7:30 pm in Town Hall (110 Myrtle Avenue).  The meeting can be watched on Cablevision channel 79, Frontier channel 99, or online here.  You can see the official agenda by clicking hereDisclaimer: What’s below is my interpretation of the agenda and not an official communication from the RTM.

In short, the RTM will discuss the following agenda items:

  1. A $60,000 appropriation to purchase NOVAtime time and attendance software/hardware for use by regular and seasonal town employees,
  1. A $24,500 appropriation to purchase the services of a professional engineer to design a headwall replacement for a culvert under Canal Road in the Saugatuck Shores area,
  1. A $326,000 appropriation to purchase two Lo Pro dump trucks,
  1. $37,500 appropriation for the second phase of a “corridor” study regarding how to improve (1) multi-modal (pedestrian/bike/vehicle) transportation from Main Street to the Westport Train station, and (2) the efficiency of traffic lights on Post Road between East Main Street (near Trader Joe’s) and Route 33 (Wilton Road), and
  1. Whether to sign the Greater Bridgeport Regional Recycling Interlocal Agreement, which relates to the method and costs of disposing our town’s recyclables.

DETAIL:

AGENDA ITEM #1 A $60,000 appropriation to purchase NOVAtime time and attendance software/hardware for use by regular and seasonal town employees:

The NOVAtime system would automate many payroll-related functions that town employees currently input manually.  The system is web-based, which means an employee can “clock in” on computers or smart phones.  The town would then have the ability to track the activity of the employee. Employees can also log in with “biometrics” like their handprint.  The NOVAtime system would improve the recording accuracy of hours worked and streamline the payroll process for town employees.

According to page 3 of the meeting packet, the town and NOVAtime would enter into a five-year contract with one-time implementation fees of $15,740, which is included in the total 12-month system cost of $49,505.  The Director of Human Resources has requested an appropriation of $60,000 from the Special Appropriations Account to cover the cost and the Board of Finance recommended the appropriation.

AGENDA ITEM #2$24,500 appropriation to purchase the services of a professional engineer to design a headwall replacement for a culvert under Canal Road in the Saugatuck Shores area:

A headwall is a wall of masonry or concrete built at the outlet of a culvert, which is a type of tunnel/channel that water can flow through.  Here, the culvert and headwall keep Canal Road from eroding due to the water from the sound.  Here’s a picture of the pertinent culvert.

Culvert

The Department of Public Works has requested $24,500 from the Capital and Non-Recurring Expenditure Fund to hire an outside engineer to design the headwall because the design requires specific expertise that Westport and other towns don’t typically have have in-house.

AGENDA ITEM #3$326,000 appropriation to purchase two Lo Pro dump trucks,

More specifically, these are 25,000 pound GVW medium duty dump trucks, which can be used for many things including plowing and spreading salt.  These trucks are planned replacements for older trucks, and the money earmarked for purchasing them is in the Capital and Non-Recurring Account.  The Director of Public Works is requesting an appropriation of these funds.

I had the opportunity to see a similar model truck and it is large – possibly 4 times the size of the Schatz swagger wagon (our minivan) – and multi-functional vehicle with a more complicated interface than any truck I’ve ever seen.  The trucks also have advanced technology that makes them more fuel efficient, and a lower profile (hence “Lo Pro”) that makes them more suitable than a high profile truck for the roads in our town.

AGENDA ITEM #4 A $37,500 appropriation for the second phase of a “corridor” study regarding how to improve (1) multi-modal (pedestrian/bike/vehicle) transportation from Main Street to the Westport Train station, and (2) the efficiency of traffic lights on Post Road between East Main Street (near Trader Joe’s) and Route 33 (Wilton Road):Untitled design (14)

This study is at least 80% funded by entities outside of Westport and would focus on “Main to Train” issues.  For example, right now the traffic lights on Post Road between East Main (around Trader Joe’s) and Route 33 (Wilton Road) do not “communicate” with each other so that drivers can get through multiple green lights at once.  This study could be the first step towards fixing that.  The study may also include an analysis of the feasibility and merits of adding bike lanes and/or improving sidewalks between Main Street and the train station.  The Connecticut Department of Transportation (“CT DOT”) would be a partner in the study, so this might be a good opportunity for Westport to improve our relationship with the CT DOT and highlight problems in the “Main to Train” corridor that the state could help fix.

The $37,500 is an appropriation from the Railroad Parking Reserve Expense Account for 20% of the study, and was recommended by the Board of Finance.

AGENDA ITEM #5:  Whether to sign the Greater Bridgeport Regional Recycling Interlocal Agreement, which relates to the method and costs of disposing our town’s recyclables.

The town already participates in the Recycling Interlocal Agreement and this contact would extend the term of our participation until 2036 or, at the town’s request, the end of each year. Westport could also withdraw from the agreement with six months’ notice and the approval of the group’s governing body.  The other towns listed in the agreement are Bridgeport, East Haven, Easton, Fairfield, Milford, Monroe, Orange, Stratford, Westport, and Woodbridge.  The cost of disposing of recyclables under the agreement is related to a municipality’s total tonnage of municipal recyclables for the current or most recently completed fiscal year.  A copy of the draft contract is the last document in the meeting packet.  Disclaimer: This post has been my interpretation of the agenda and not an official communication from the RTM. You can view the official meeting agenda here.