TOWN MANAGER COMMUNITY MESSAGE (MARCH 20, 2020)

MARCH 20, 2020 - TOWN MANAGER COMMUNITY MESSAGE

Hello Enfield,

What a difference a couple weeks can make in our lives. This is the first chance I’ve had to pause and take a breath.

We are blessed to live in a community with so many caring people; people who put others first. If you think we are some frayed, distant, uncaring society you need to look around you and see the kind and selfless things your neighbors are doing for their neighbors.

We have an amazing team of Town employees working diligently to serve our community. The staff in Enfield are not just “government” employees; they are committed to public service. Never once has it been “that’s too much” or “that’s too hard.” It has been “what does the community need” and then doing whatever is needed. Every time. Members of our team have been working long hours to coordinate our response, our efforts, our messaging, and continuing to prepare for the future. The GOOD MORNING ENFIELD PROGRAM is a great example of this. The Enfield Police Department is checking in on members of our at risk population on a regular basis. If you are or know of a senior citizen or other individual who needs specialized care, needs to be checked in on, or who requires assistance obtaining necessities please contact: Corporal Courtland Smith (csmith@enfield.nh.us) or Paula Rowe (prowe@enfield.nh.us). We want to be there for members of our community, even it’s simply the comfort and reassurance that a friendly voice on the other end of the phone can provide.

I also want to take a moment to recognize the hard work and dedication of the volunteers in our community. Because the current health crisis necessitated the closure of its local food pantries, Friends of Mascoma is coordinating with local law enforcement or otherwise designated points of contact to get bagged/boxed food to people who need it each a week.  I am very proud that the Enfield Police Department stepped up without hesitation to offer assistance with this important service. This is what COMMUNITY policing is all about. If you or someone you know is in need of at home food delivery, please provide the requested information found at the following link: http://friendsofmascoma.org/news/update-covid-19-outbreak

The way out of any crisis has always been a hand up to those in need. More than anything that is what is going to get us through this. There is a famous Mr. Rogers quote going around “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” In Enfield when you look for the helpers you will recognize them as your neighbors. The community response to help each other out has been incredible, and that dedication to our neighbors is what community really means and that is the most powerful weapon we have in this fight.

I know there is a lot of concern and uncertainty out there. The world has been turned upside down and things continue to change rapidly. The situation will likely continue to get worse before it gets better, and we don’t know exactly where we’ll be in six weeks or six months or more. What will come will come, and we will meet it when it does. No matter how hard things may get, we’ve got this Enfield. We’re here for each other. Keep calm, carry on, and help your neighbors. 

Ryan J. Aylesworth, Town Manager

P.S. Remember to support our local businesses where you can. It's going to be a tough time for them and every little bit will help.

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MARCH 19, 2020 - FRIENDS OF MASCOMA BAGGED/BOXED FOOD

Effectively immediately the Friends of Mascoma Foundation will no longer be operating food pantries that are open to the public.  We will be coordinating with local law enforcement or otherwise designated points of contact to get bagged/boxed food to people ONCE a week.  If you are interested in receiving this food please complete the information below and send it to Elkozma@friendsofmascoma.org (Use BOX ORDER in the subject heading) or call the FOM Office: 603.632.4542 by Friday at 5pm.   We anticipate that boxes will be packaged on Sundays and then made available to each designated person/office below in one of the 5 Mascoma Towns.  Pick up/distribution will be coordinated through each town. You may also send them your form directly.  Boxes will be available through each contact so you may be able to get a box even if you miss the Friday deadline.  The Friday deadline will allow us to make an estimate of how many boxes we need to prepare. 

EMERGENCY FOOD BOX FORM

Shopper Name:_______________________________________________

Shopper DOB: _______________________________________________

Shopper Address: STREET:______________________________________

TOWN:____________________________ ZIP:______________________

Shopper Email or Phone #:______________________________________

Size of Household:____   # of Adults:_______# of Seniors: _______ # of Children:_______

PICK UP AT DESIGNATED SITE:____________________________________

NEEDS DELIVERY CIRCLE ONE:     YES      NO

QUARANTINED CIRCLE ONE:        YES     NO 

NOTES:__________________________

BY EMAIL:

Enfield Email: Roy Holland, rholland@enfield.nh.us

Grafton Email:  Russell Poitras, russellpoitras@aol.com

Dorchester Email: Sherman Hallock, shermanhallock@msn.com

Orange Email:  Karen McFarlane, karen@sc3d.org

Dorchester Email: Sherman Hallock, shermanhallock@msn.com

Canaan Email: Sam Frank at sfrank@canaanpolice.com 

BY PHONE:

Canaan: (603) 523-7400

Grafton: (603) 523-7667

Enfield: (603) 632-7501

Orange and Dorchester call FOM  (603) 632.4542

If you have any questions please contact Eula Kozma, Executive Director, at elkozma@friendsofmascoma.org or 603-632-4542

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MARCH 17, 2020 - TOWN HALL CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC (UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE)

To read the detailed breakdown of changes in municipal services and operations published by the Town Manager's Office on March 17, please visit here: https://www.enfield.nh.us/sites/enfieldnh/files/uploads/press_release_-_...

Governor Sununu issued a state of emergency for the State of New Hampshire on March 13 due to COVID-19. The Governor also directed all schools to close and work toward a virtual environment at least until April 6th. Officials for the Town of Enfield met this morning to discuss our plans moving forward through this crisis.

We continue to actively monitor the COVID-19 situation, which is rapidly evolving. The Town is committed to the continued health and optimal safety of our residents as well as our employees, and we intend to do our part to “flatten the curve” of the COVID-19 pandemic. To that end, in consultation with our Emergency Management Director, we have decided that effective Tuesday, March 17, 2020, Town Hall will be closed to the public until further notice.

However, we will still be working to serve the residents of Enfield. We intend to do our best to operate as a “VIRTUAL TOWN HALL.”  In today’s world, most of the transactions for our residents can be done online or arranged via phone, email, or drop box. Resident questions can and will be answered via phone or email. And as a last resort, you may schedule an appointment in Town Hall with the appropriate Town personnel to complete your transaction. Our Town Hall employees will be working both remotely and on-site (in very limited numbers as necessary)—but we will continue to be at your service.

PUBLIC SAFETY & EMERGENCY SERVICES: Of course, the dedicated personnel of our Police, Fire and Ambulance Departments will continue to serve the residents of our Town through this crisis. That said, while these departments will generally be proceeding with a “business as usual” approach, we needed to make some modifications to our typical operating procedures to ensure the safety of our first responders as well. Along these lines, we ask that you please keep all non-emergency calls to a minimum so that our emergency services personnel may devote their time to those residents in need of emergency services. If you have non-emergency COVID-19 related questions, please call 2-1-1 (a state hotline manned 24/7 specifically for such questions). Additional information regarding certain services customarily performed by the Enfield Police Department that are temporarily being suspended can be found in this department-issued press release: https://www.enfield.nh.us/sites/enfieldnh/files/uploads/pd_press_release...

PUBLIC LIBRARY: On Monday, March 16, the Enfield Public Library Trustees and the Town Librarian met to discuss operating hours of the Enfield Public Library in light of the COVID-19 crisis.  The Enfield Town Manager and Enfield Emergency Services Director/Police Chief have also been consulted.

The safety of the Library’s patrons and staff are our primary concern while at the same time recognizing the Library is an important resource at times like this when access to information is vitally important.  Balancing these two priorities is of primary concern.  The Trustees have made the difficult decision to close the Enfield Public Library with the current goal of reopening on Saturday, April 4th at 10:00AM.  The Library will continuously review this decision and may either open earlier or extend the close longer as the situation dictates.  During this time patrons are encouraged to review our online services at:  https://www.enfield.nh.us/enfield-public-library/pages/digital-subscript... Over the next few days we will be evaluating options that might give some additional access to library services while we are closed.  Details on any interim services will be forthcoming and will be posted both on the Library Website https://www.enfield.nh.us/enfield-public-library, Library Facebook Page (https://www.facebook.com/Enfield-Town-Library-1633253913560565/), and the Enfield ListServ.  Please don’t worry about returning materials; all fines will be forgiven during closure.

This was not an easy decision for the Librarian or the Trustees to make; however, it is the proper one given the guidance being provided by both State and Federal authorities.

Library personnel will post updates as outlined above. Should you have any questions feel free to contact either Town Librarian Melissa Hutson at mhutson@enfield.nh.us or Library Trustee Chair Dominic Albanese at dca1917@outlook.com.

PUBLIC MEETINGS: Non-essential Board and Committee meetings in March will be canceled and more information will be forthcoming about meetings in April and beyond.  Essential meetings of the Board of Selectmen, Planning Board, Zoning Board of Adjustment and Conservation Commission will be held as scheduled. The Governor’s Office has also issued formal guidance to NH municipalities making it clear that, given the emergency declaration, boards and committees have the ability to expand their use of teleconferencing to limit interpersonal exposure. We are continuing to work through the logistical details associated with use of applications such as Zoom that may enable a meeting to more efficiently accommodate remote participation among its members. Please check out the Town’s website for an up-to-date calendar of meetings that will be taking place.

MUNICIPAL FACILITIES – EVENTS CANCELED

We will be reaching out to all groups who will be affected by the following changes:

Community Building:  Due to the need to protect our citizens from undue exposure to the coronavirus and our inability to thoroughly disinfect the Community Building, and other municipal spaces, in between uses, all public and private functions scheduled at the Enfield Community Building are canceled until further notice, but not sooner than May 1, 2020.  We will review the situation again at that time.  Any function scheduled during that time for which a rental fee has been paid will have all fees refunded.  No new reservations or applications will be accepted until that time. 

If you have rented the Enfield Community Building for a date after May 1 and wish to cancel your event please contact the Town at 603-632-5026 or abonnette@enfield.nh.us

Huse Park: Please note that the playground equipment (including the climbing equipment, swing sets, etc.) at Huse Park is closed to public use. This is being done to reduce the potential incidence of COVID-19 exposure and promote public health.

Public Works Facility & Town Hall Conference Room:  Use of these spaces will be available for essential Town meetings only.  All non-essential Town board and committee meetings are highly discouraged.  Private groups will not have access to the building beginning March 16, 2020.

Finally, rest assured that we will be monitoring all local developments related to COVID-19, and as your Town officials, we are committed to timely and ongoing communication about any and all changes to our operating status as well as any recommendations to the public from public health and other government officials.

 

“HOW TO” COMPLETE TOWN HALL TRANSACTIONS

WEBSITE: The Town website address is www.enfield.nh.us, and we encourage you to visit the website frequently for new information and updates.

TOWN HALL MAILING ADDRESS: Should you need mail anything to Town Hall, the address is as follows:

Town of Enfield, PO Box 373, Enfield, NH 03748

DROP BOX:  At the public entrance to Town Hall there is a secure, brown drop box where you may drop off checks (NO CASH) or other paperwork. Should your paperwork not fit, please refer to the list of contacts below to make alternative arrangements.

TOWN HALL GENERAL TELEPHONE NUMBER: (603) 632-5026 (See contacts below for direct numbers and specific extensions).

TRANSACTIONS: The following is a list of the transactions most often performed for our residents in Town Hall, and directions as to how each may be accomplished until the COVID-19 crisis passes and we can safely re-open our doors:

Notary Services: The Enfield Town Offices has suspended Notary Services indefinitely.

Renewal of car registrations:  Should be done online via our website portal: https://www.enfield.nh.us/home/pages/online-payments.

Registration and title transfers of a newly purchased vehicle: We are working on preparations for NEW registrations, titles and transfers to be done in person by appointment.  This option should be available within a few days, after we have been able to construct an adequate plexiglass shield/barrier at the customer service counter to protect our residents and employees from unnecessary contact.  We will make information regarding the logistics for this process available later this week.

Copies of vital records (birth or death certificates): Can be requested online at https://www.enfield.nh.us/home/pages/online-payments

Dog licensing: Renewals can be done online https://www.enfield.nh.us/home/pages/online-payments; registration of new dogs will be by appointment only.  Contact Town Clerk Sandra Romano at townclerk@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-5001.

Boat registrations: Registrations can be done by mail or left in the drop box outside the Town Offices.  More information can be found on the NH DMV website at https://www.nh.gov/safety/divisions/dmv/registration/boat.htm

Voter Registration: Contact Town Clerk Sandra Romano at townclerk@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-5001.

Questions about vehicle registrations, vital records, dog licensing, boat registrations, or marriage licenses should be directed to Town Clerk Sandra Romano, townclerk@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-5001.

Tax AND Sewer payments: Can be made in one of three ways: (1) online via our website portal https://www.enfield.nh.us/home/pages/online-payments ; (2) via mail (checks ONLY and postmark dates will be honored as the date of payment); or (3) via dropping your check in the Drop box (outside the entrance to the Town Hall (again, no cash). Contact Tax Collector Wendy Huntley with questions, whuntley@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-4201.

Property Assessment Records, Deeds and Tax Maps: Can be viewed online at https://www.axisgis.com/enfieldnh/  Some documents, including septic plans, building permits and sales data is not available online but most documents can be scanned and emailed.  Contact Assessing Administrator Julie Huntley at jahuntley@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-5026, ext. 5406.

Filing for and renewals of Exemptions and Credits, etc.: Information for verification or renewal can be sent by mail or dropped off in the drop box; questions can be directed to Julie Huntley at jahuntley@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-5026, ext. 5406.  The following forms are available online for your convenience at https://www.enfield.nh.us/assessing-department/pages/forms:

Deadlines:

Elderly Exemptions, April 15

Veteran’s Tax Credits, April 15

Tax Deferrals, April 15

Current Use Applications, April 15

Exempt Property Applications (Charitable, Religious, Educational), April 15

Timber Intents, None

Gravel Intents, None

Home and Building Inspections: As long as construction proceeds, inspections will continue. Please contact Phil Neily at pneily@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-4343.

Building permits: Permit applications are available on the Town website https://www.enfield.nh.us/building-inspection-health-officer/pages/permi... and will be accepted via email, mail or drop box outside Town Hall. Payments are to be made by check only. Should you need to drop off plans or applications which will not fit in the drop box, please call 603-632-4343.

Building plan reviews: Will be accepted via email, mail or drop box outside Town Hall. If necessary, we will meet individuals by appointment only to go over plan questions; please contact 4603-632-4343.

Burial plot sales or Internments: contact Public Works Director Jim Taylor at jtaylor@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-4605 to arrange.

Burn permits: Contact the Forest Fire Warden, David Crate, at 603-252-0386, or the Fire Chief, Fred Cummings, at 603-359-5206 or fcummings@enfield.nh.us. We would also like to convey that the Fire Chief is attempting to enable burn permits to be obtained online. Please continue to monitor the department’s website at: https://www.enfield.nh.us/fire-department/pages/burning-information-permits

Road complaints, Snow Plowing, Roadway drainage: Contact Public Works Director Jim Taylor at jtaylor@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-4605.

Trash and Recycling general questions: Contact Director of Public Works, Jim Taylor at jtaylor@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-4605.  During this time the Transfer Station will remain open, but we ask people to use curbside rubbish and recycling collection if at all possible.  Not only does this limit personal contact, but saves tax dollars. If you have the ability to retain your recyclables until the situation abates and recycle them later, it would be appreciated. Additionally, please use discretion discarding bulky waste at the Transfer Station and wait to discard items requiring a disposal fee, such as televisions or propane tanks, until the situation abates.

Municipal Water & Sewer Questions:  Contact Water/Sewer Operator Norm Ruel at watersewer@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-4002.

To file land use board submissions (including Planning Board and Zoning Board of Adjustment) or to review site plans, subdivision plans, etc. please contact Land Use & Community Development Administrator Rob Taylor at planning@enfield.nh.us or 603-632-4067 to arrange and appointment.

Wetland Permit and Shoreland Protection Applications for review by the Conservation Commission can be filed by mail or left in the drop box outside the Town Hall.  If you have any questions about filing contact Town Clerk Sandra Romano at 603-632-5001 or townclerk@enfield.nh.us.  Questions about a project can be directed to Conservation Commission Chairman Alan Strickland at alanstrickland@me.com

Enfield Punch Cards & Lebanon Punch Cards for trash disposal:  Payment for Enfield Punch Cards ($25) and Lebanon Punch Cards ($15) can be left in the drop box outside the Town Offices.  Please include your name and mailing address and punch cards will be put in the mail at the end of the same business day. 

Other Town Office Services are by appointment only.  Enfield and Lebanon punch cards will be available to you if you have an appointment for other business with the Town.

Recreation Programming: Information is available online at https://www.enfield.nh.us/parks-recreation

All Other Services: Please do not hesitate to reach out to the Town Manager’s Office at 603-632-5026 or email the individual you wish to contact for assistance with any other Town Office Services.