Charlotte Selectboard reappoints Flore as town constable, discusses traffic enforcement

The Charlotte Selectboard reappointed Josh Flore as town constable during the board’s meeting last Monday.

Flore’s appointment is for a two-year term ending June 2019. Following the confirmation vote, the board then entered into a lengthy discussion with Flore regarding traffic enforcement and speeding issues around town.

Selectboard members agreed to address an array of concerns on June 12, including the potential cost of the Addison County Sheriff’s Department’s assistance with traffic enforcement, inquiry about bonding Flore, and the availability of worker’s compensation for a constable as a town employee.

Because Charlotte has no police department, the town contracts with the Vermont State Police for law-enforcement services, and the board said there is no possibility of adding more hours. The VSP is currently contracted for 8.5 hours a month; this contract is up for renewal July 1.

Chairman Lane Morrison brought up two traffic-enforcement issues and also noted possible solutions such as a police-equipped motorcycle or a contract with the Chittenden County Sherriff’s Department. Selectboard member Carrie Spear advocated for increased patrols concentrating on so-called “hot spots” in town at designated times. On the heels of that, the board noted the U.S. Route 7 construction project prompted motorists’ use of alternate north-south routes in town. Citizens are concerned that the practice will likely continue once the project wraps up.

Flore works full-time as a Shelburne Police officer and said he can offer three to four additional hours during summer as a “stop-gap solution.” He pointed out that he could potentially put lights on his motorcycle. Flore also told the board that in his capacity as a law-enforcement official, he tends to write more warning notices than tickets as a deterrent.

Assistant Town Clerk Christina Booher noted that if equipment to outfit the motorcycle exceeded $1,000, three quotes were required under town purchasing policy.

Fees associated with traffic tickets return to the town, with a portion relegated to the state to offset enforcement costs. Flore said he will discuss with the Shelburne Police officials and the department’s dispatch unit the potential transportation and back-up needs should a scenario arise where an arrest is made and prisoner transport is necessary.

During the meeting, Town Administrator Dean Bloch pointed out that Charlotte insurance won’t cover Flore’s vehicle liability, and Flore said his insurance doesn’t cover business use. Flore also sought to know if he is bonded as town constable.

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