Spring Selectboards Institute


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Spring Selectboards Institute

Mar. 18, 2017

  • Location: Capitol Plaza, Montpelier
  • Time: 9:00am — 4:00pm
  • Sponsored by: VLCT Municipal Assistance Center; VLCT PACIF
  • Contact: Lisa Goodell
  • Contact Email: info@vlct.org
  • Contact Phone: (802) 229-9111
  • Contact Fax: (802) 229-2211
  • Cost: Early Bird: $60 PACIF Members; $90 VLCT Members; Add $10 after deadline
  • Registration Deadline: Friday, March 10, 2017.

Online Registration is Closed - Please register onsite.


The Spring Selectboard Institute focuses on the unique roles and responsibilities of Vermont selectboard members. Designed for both newly elected and seasoned members, the program is highly interactive and allows members to learn from each other’s experiences. Staff members who report to the selectboard will also benefit from attending.



Registration Opens (light breakfast provided)


Welcome and Overview

Abby Friedman, Director, VLCT Municipal Assistance Center


Introduction to VLCT Membership and Services

Maura Carroll, VLCT Executive Director


Getting Things Done in a Legal and Effective Manner – The Selectboard’s Authority and Relationship with other Municipal Officials

The selectboard is responsible for specific statutory duties as well as duties assigned generally to towns but not to a specific town official. All of these duties must be carried out in the context of the municipal organization while complying with state and federal laws and regulations. In this introductory session, we will explain the statutory framework and municipal governance model as well as the selectboard’s relationship with various elected and appointed town officials.

Sarah Jarvis, Staff Attorney, VLCT Municipal Assistance Center

Carl Andeer, Staff Attorney, VLCT Municipal Assistance Center





Helping Your Road Crew Prepare for the Municipal Roads General Permit (MRGP)

The upcoming MRGP is one of the new requirements of Act 64, the Vermont Clean Water Act passed in 2015. In this session, we will summarize the draft permit including road standards, road erosion inventories, implementation triggers, and timelines. We will also discuss the various training programs and cooperative opportunities available to support local road crews as well as the selectboard’s role in helping road crews prepare for the MRGP.

Jim Ryan, Municipal Roads Program Coordinator, Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation

Stu Johnson, Branch Manager, Agency of Transportation, Vermont Local Roads Program



Lunch (provided) and VLCT Legislative Update

Karen Horn, Director, VLCT Public Policy and Advocacy


OML – OMG! Open Meeting Law Compliance in the Age of Social Media

Is it possible for municipal officials to use group email without violating the Open Meeting Law? Can selectboard members post to Front Porch Forum? Who should be able to post to the town’s Facebook page? This session will address these and other questions about the use of social media within the legal constraints imposed by Vermont’s Open Meeting Law.

Garrett Baxter, Senior Staff Attorney, VLCT Municipal Assistance Center

Sarah Jarvis, Staff Attorney, VLCT Municipal Assistance Center





Special Topics for Selectboard Members Concurrent Sessions


1. Managing Conflicts of Interest

Conflicts of interest – real or perceived – are inevitable, especially in small towns. To help elected and appointed municipal officials manage these conflicts, VLCT’s Municipal Assistance Center has developed a Model Conflict of Interest Policy. In this session, we will summarize the model policy and touch upon the legalities and best practices for managing conflicts of interest when they arise.

Garrett Baxter, Senior Staff Attorney, VLCT Municipal Assistance Center


2. Quasi-Judicial Roles of a Selectboard

In addition to their legislative and executive functions, selectboard members often serve in a quasi-judicial capacity, such as when they conduct “vicious” dog hearings or employment termination hearings, and when they act as the local board of health or as members of both the Board of Civil Authority and Board of Abatement. This session will cover the legal parameters of a quasi-judicial hearing, including affording due process, appropriate the use of deliberative session, managing ethical dilemmas, and writing enforceable decisions.

Carl Andeer, Staff Attorney, VLCT Municipal Assistance Center


3. Protecting your Municipal Budget by Avoiding Costly Insurance Claims

As part of their duties, selectboard members not only procure insurance but also make many decisions that can end up increasing the cost of insurance – especially now, with Vermont joining the national trend of very expensive liability claims. In this session, VLCT Property and Casualty Intermunicipal Fund (PACIF) insurance staff members will outline the coverage necessary for Vermont municipalities, discuss examples of large claims reported by PACIF member municipalities, and explain practical ways to reduce the risk of incurring or exacerbating costly claims during your term of office.

Joe Damiata, Interim Director, VLCT Risk Management Services

Fred Satink, Manager, VLCT Underwriting, Safety and Health Promotion



Workshop Conclusion and Evaluations Completed

Please Note:

Early Bird Registration and Cancellation Deadline is Friday, March 10, 2017

Registrations received after this date will be charged an extra $10.00 per person.

Our cancellation policy requires that you notify VLCT in writing by the event's registration deadline to receive a refund of your registration fee.

For a full refund, please cancel in writing by the registration deadline. Please note that, for your convenience, you may pre-register without paying. However, if you do not attend the workshop, and have not cancelled your registration in writing or via email by the deadline, you will be billed for the full cost of the workshop.

Cancellation for events, even for sickness, that comes after the deadline cannot be refunded because VLCT will have already incurred all the costs for attendance including space rental, meal guarantees and packet generation.

Please mail payment to VLCT, 89 Main Street, Suite 4, Montpelier, VT 05602.