Peru board debates electric sign display

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PERU — Selectman Dickie Powell said he or another selectman should be able to preview what is going to be posted on the electronic sign at the fire station before it gets posted. 

Powell asked who places the information on meetings on the sign, saying he got a complaint about it.
 
Selectman Kathy Hussey said she sends information to the Fireman’s Association, which owns the sign, and an association member puts it on according to the space allowed. 

“Well, someone on this board should look at it before it goes on,” Powell said. 
 
Explaining the reason for the controversy, Dawna Kazregis said the word “vote” was left off of the notice for the special town meeting for Jan 19. She said people didn’t know there was going to be a vote taken.
 
Town Clerk Vera Parent pointed out that “A special town meeting speaks for itself. There will be a vote taken.”  
 
Discussion then erupted over who owns the sign and someone asked if the sign could be taken down. It was discussed that it could be taken down as the sign didn’t belong to the town, but the fire station was town property.  
 
Hussey said notices were being put up as a courtesy to the town, but she said, “We can’t seem to do anything right for you people.”  
 
That was not the only cause for debate between Powell and Hussey. 

Powell asked who he should talk to if there is a problem with the way General Assistance, which is managed by Hussey, is handled. It was finally resolved that if it was a personnel problem, it should be talked about in executive session, and GA clients can not legally be publicly discussed.

Powell disagreed and said he would discuss whoever he wanted. Hussey continued to say it was confidential. It was finally decided that the situation was an executive-session issue. 
 
Hussey had given the board a copy of the process she follows and had added a note that she had been accused of breaching GA confidentiality, which she said was not true. She said not one applicant had been mistreated by her.  
 
In another matter, Selectman Edward Ferland questioned Hussey when she started receiving insurance. She said her policy started in January.

He accused her of double-dipping by taking 50 cents an hour for not having insurance. 
Parent said that the figures the board were reviewing were for the previous year when she was not getting insurance. 
 
Powell said he didn’t know why Peru was handing out 100 percent insurance to town employees. Parent said the town has a higher deductible and it saved $1,200 last year by dropping the employees down a tier in coverage.  
 
There was considerable discussion over what was paid to an assessor and how details were documented in the office on changes. It was decided that Hussey would develop a form that would go with property cards as well as having a copy of changes on the computer program. There are still some foreclosures where the town has not taken possession of the property.
 
Discussion arose over why these people were getting a free ride. The town could sell the property to lower taxes. Selectman Laurieann Milligan pointed out that if the town took possession, it would have to pay insurance on the property as well as upkeep.
 
The board signed a year lease for the Friends of the Peru School. It is the same agreement as before except that the Town Office does not share water with the school. The office has its own well.    
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