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Selectboard 6/4/2024

Selectboard Regular Meeting

June 4, 2024

DRAFT Page 1

Present:

Selectboard: Sheila Duranleau (Chair), AJ Galfetti, Josh Bell

Town officers: Peter Carbee (Assistant Town Clerk), Lois Deberville (Town Clerk), Ben Tiefenthaler (FEMA admin), Billy Donovan (Lister)

Visitors: Dr. Robert Rinaldi, Terry Reil

Zoom: Cheri Galfetti, Ryan Bresette

  1. Chair called the meeting to order at 6:32 p.m.
  2. Josh made the motion to approve the minutes from the May 14, 2024, meeting, 2nd by AJ, ayes carried.
  3. Adjustments to agenda: Josh introduced Terry Reil from Pro Fleet LLC, will be put under Visitors. AJ asked about a credit card for the road crew, he will check with Scott (treasurer). Sheila will discuss locked-in fuel prices, added 7.7
  4. Public Comment: Billy asked Peter for a copy of the exchange with the Vermont League of Cities and Towns (VLCT) on the amending of warning article for the budget meeting. Sheila reiterated that exchanges between VLCT (and individual) are considered client/attorney privilege.
  5. Visitors: Terry Reil, Pro Fleet LLC: this is his business and he does safety compliance consulting.   He explained such offerings as air brake training, drug and alcohol collection. He gave the board sample CDL driver forms, as well as prices for services. Both AJ and Josh have had interactions with Terry, and highly recommend him.  Josh made the motion to hire Pro Fleet LLC, 2nd by AJ, ayes carried. Josh will be the contact person.
  6. Town Clerk report:
    1. The security system was updated using money from the restoration fund, allowed by the state.
    1. Have had complaints about people parking in front of the handicap ramp, would like lines painted. AJ will send Lois the names of businesses who could do this to ADA compliance.
    1. The Jail House road sign has been taken again, there was a recent incident when an ambulance had difficulty finding a residence. Dr. Rinaldi explained how the latest Bear Hoot Hollow sign was attached differently so it couldn’t be easily removed.
    1. Some calls about chloride: AJ explained that chloride is put down after grading as it has to go down on loose road, and right now we don’t have enough to do extra.
    1. No access to building on Friday, June 7, 2024, due to power washing being done.
    1. Board ok’d taking the old computers to Computer Barn for wiping and recycling. Peter will call to see if there will be a cost.
    1. Lois declined the state’s offer to send the new green books of statutes which now will cost the town $410.50 per set (previously were no cost to town), as the person who sent the information did say all statutes are available online.

Listers:

  • Billy said they have a few more site visits to do and some more data entry with the district advisor, still have Current Use to do. Will be preparing the change of appraisal notices within the next ten days, and grievance info. All will be mailed out.

FEMA Admin:

  1. Ben: we are now on our 4th FEMA project manager. Things on FEMA’s end are slow moving. Ben keeps in constant touch with FEMA, reiterating the urgency.     

DRAFT Page 2

 FEMA continued: Ben explained other projects that the new FEMA team seems more amenable to. Ben is meeting with a FEMA team on June 5, there will be an upcoming site visit. FEMA is encouraging towns to pursue options that will save the federal government and the town money in the long term.

                Hands Mill: Ben said we also have a new state person on this project. Looking at October for construction to begin.

7.1          Hazard Mitigation Grant Program: This is a grant that would give us no-match funding. Ben said Steven Libbey would come do a site visit and help them through the application process. August 16 is the pre-application due date.

7.2          Local Emergency Management Plan (LEMP): the board reviewed the plan as updated by Sheila, AJ made the motion to accept, 2nd by Josh, carried by ayes.

                Some points: Fred Blanchard, Lois Deberville, Josh Bell, Maxine Durbrow, Sheila Duranleau, AJ Galfetti, Ryan Bresette, Ben Tiefenthaler are listed for duties relating to the LEMP. There is virtual training available. The primary location for the emergency operation center is the fire station because they have a radio, alternate is the town hall. Authority to spend emergency money up to $5000 is traditionally given to the fire chief but will add selectboard members. We want to make a list of vulnerable residents who would need to be checked on immediately in the event of an emergency.

7.3          Lois had found check stubs from 2023 written out as past compensation to elected officials, gave the information to Scott. There will be a new method of when to pay out service agency monies that get voted on at town meetings, and a new method of when to pay elected officials their compensation.

7.4          Septic system: Craig Chase sent a letter saying the state needs to know the previous use of this building’s septic system.  This was not only a church with different functions, but also had an attached apartment.  Peter will contact Craig for more information.

7.5          TH47 update: Site visit will be July 16, 2024 with AJ and Josh, (site visits do not count as a meeting) certified letters will be sent to the adjoining property owner(s) and anyone with interest, such as someone with a right of way.

7.6          State child labor law prohibits anyone under age 18 to operate power equipment. Josh said an interested parent had called the state and was also told this. Sheila will look into the statute again to try to make it work.

7.7          Motion made by AJ to allow Chris Locarno (Director of Finance for Central Vermont Supervisory Union) to lock the town into set fuel oil prices, 2nd by Josh, ayes carried. (garage, fire department, town clerk’s office, library)

7.8          The personnel policy needed some clarification specifically on overtime and holiday pay. Sheila presented changes to the board members. Lois said she had chosen to take a day rather than take the paid time and a half for town meeting (a working holiday for town clerk). Sheila said that’s fine, it’s flex time. Josh made motion to adopt, 2nd by AJ, ayes carried. Motion to adjourn at 8:21 by Josh, AJ 2nd, ayes carried.

This is a draft subject to amendment/approval at a future selectboard meeting. Attest: Lois Deberville, Town Clerk

Next regularly scheduled selectboard meeting is Tuesday, July 2, 2024, at the town hall, 6:30 p.m.

Selectboard Agenda 6/4/24 & ZOOM Info

WASHINGTON SELECTBOARD AGENDA

Regular Meeting 

June 4, 2024 at 6:30 pm

Town Hall, Washington VT

1. Call meeting to order

2. Review and approve minutes from the May 14, 2024 regular meeting.

3. Adjustments to agenda (changes or additions to the agenda)

4. Public Comment (on items that are not on the agenda)

5. Visitors (no requests)

6. Updates/Reports from Town Officials

7. Business

7.1 Hazard mitigation funding programs June 1st deadline. Project ideas (action)

7.2 Local Emergency Management Plan (action)

7.3 Past compensation for elected officials i.e. planning and zoning members (action)

7.4 Septic system for town hall (information)

7.5 TH47 (update)

7.6 Municipalities employing minors (information)

8. Next meetingthe next meeting scheduled is a regular meeting on July 2, 2024

Posted on 6/2/2024

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Topic: Selectboard Meeting 6/4/24
Time: Jun 4, 2024 06:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Selectboard Minutes 5/14/2024

Selectboard Meeting

May 14, 2024

Draft Page 1 of 4

Present:

Selectboard: Sheila Duranleau (Chair), Josh Bell (Tree Warden), AJ Galfetti

Town Officials: Peter Carbee (Assistant Town Clerk), Lois Deberville (Town Clerk), Ben Tiefenthaler (FEMA Admin),

Susan Davis (Lister), Billy Donovan (Lister)

Visitors: Dr. Robert Rinaldi, Louise Rinaldi

Zoom: Cheri Galfetti, Sarah Teel, Becky

  1. Chair called meeting to order at 6:31 p.m.
  2. AJ made motion to adopt the minutes from the March 28, 2024, meeting, 2nd by Josh, ayes carried. AJ made motion to adopt the minutes from the May 7, 2024, meeting, 2nd by Josh, ayes carried.
  3. Adjustments to the agenda: Ben said 8.3 can be deleted as the World Fish Migration Day event will not be held in Washington this year.
  4. No public comments on items that are not on the agenda.
  5. No comments from visitors.
  6. Listers: Billy-the listers had met with Frank Rossi from CAI Mapping, was given price of $5850 for updated maps, PDFs, and Source Digital GIS Data. They are noticing people building without having building permits. Lois explained the permit process from the application to Gary Winders. Billy: not catching some properties that should be taxed. Susan: need maps before reappraisals are done. Sheila: need 3 quotes from (map) vendors. Susan: networked with other listers at training on who they used for mapping. Sheila: may not have in budget until FY26 or later.

Town Clerk: Lois-need cameras for the other office and map room, and for the end of the porch. There was a gas can left there recently. Quote from Green Mountain Security for $879 for one camera and installation. Lois will find out if we can use some of our records & restoration fund to pay for the extra camera(s) as it’s to secure more files.

Motion by Josh to approve the $879 if we have the money in the fund and if not, try to find the money for it, 2nd by AJ, ayes carried.

The town hall needs a key box outside, Lois will check with Harry and/or the fire department on how to proceed.

Lois: We have 20 years of (3) year binders of previous tax bills. Statute states we only need to keep (3) years other than folks who may owe past that.

Town disposed of 95 tires and 1480 pounds of trash after Green Up Day.

We will issue a statement saying town is not responsible for picking up dumped tires, mattresses, etc.

Assistant Town Clerk: Peter was asked by a resident about biking through Richardson Road. The biker was told by landowners that he had to leave immediately; however, our records show that it is still town owned as a trail.

Draft Page 2 of 4

FEMA Admin: Ben-has been going through branch directors, new one is more amenable re: culverts, during a meeting last week they walked Notch RD, now other repairs may be covered under codes & standards rather than hazard mitigation. Hazard mitigation team will visit areas with Ben. Town got its first disbursement on May 6, the federal cost share. AJ was on top of the December storm damage, got all the documentation with Elwin, it got processed and accepted. The new hazard mitigation team is invested in a broader scope while previous folks said repair to pre-disaster condition.

Ben has photographs for every site we are claiming damage on.

Ben just got final plans on the Hands Mill Dam removal. May be able to have work started in the fall, but archeological clearance needed by UVM right across the brook from the dam, hoping would happen in May but he hasn’t heard back. We can’t put out bid until that happens. We are on our 5th lead for the river conservation district on this project. The current lead will be stepping down soon, but if bid gets put out she won’t need to be involved.

Sheila: son of previous owner wants to put a bench there. AJ: have to wait until after the dam is removed as this is an access point. The Washington Agricultural Association is interested in maintaining something, perhaps butterfly garden.

  • Organizational assignments:

7.1         Annual Rules of Procedure: AJ made motion to adopt with the removal of wording: Peter suggested removing the word ‘constable’ from 6 (d), substitute ‘law enforcement’. Motion by AJ to adopt it with amendment, 2nd by Josh, ayes carried.

7.2 – 7.11 regarding selectboard assignments/liaisons

Content AreaSelectboard Member
Highway staff oversightAJ
Conflict warrant approvalAJ
Highway grantsAJ
Law enforcementAJ
Policies/OrdinancesJosh
FinanceJosh
Highway grantsJosh
Chair responsibilitiesSheila
Town Clerk liaisonSheila
Day to day issuesSheila
MERP grantSheila
Emergency managementSheila
ReappraisalsSheila

Selectboard 2024 Organizational Assignments

Members are liaisons only in the following content areas: Gathering information, attending meetings/webinars, partnering with other town officials/subject matter experts and making recommendations to the full selectboard for discussion and decisions.

Draft Page 3 of 4

8.            Business:

 8.1        The insurance check will be mailed soon for the flood damage to the library in the amount of $27,270.90, of which $16,662.25 will be reimbursed to the town, and the balance into a library account.

8.2          Town reappraisal and updated parcel maps-listers have a steep learning curve with a lot of work that has to be done in short amount of time in order to lodge the Grand List.

8.4         Tree removal in right of way grant-AJ is the lead.

8.5         Hazard mitigation funding program due June 21.  Ben: used to be called State 404 hazard mitigation, competitive for projects that federal won’t cover. AJ: thinking of using for Notch RD. Other projects may be submitted to see if covered. Ben will be attending a symposium on flood recovery program on June 6.

8.6         Notice submitted to the selectboard: Sheila read the notice (see attached), that was submitted on April 3, 2024, with 92 signatures. Sheila: selectboard has no authority or oversight over the listers and their work. Their work is important to the town. The listers need to obtain permission though if they have been put on notice or if there’s a no trespassing sign on the properties. The notice does not imply that the work of the listers can not occur, rather that one lister can not go on the property. Susan: my name is on some as well (that have come in since). Sheila: if people have concerns, reach out to the Secretary of State or law enforcement.

Property owners can appeal if they don’t accept the listers’ value of the property.

Billy: no trespassing signs are respected by all listers in all towns as well as individual requests. He believes the document was given to the town clerk 8-9 days before the listers were given it. He said such documents needs to be show sooner as they don’t always feel safe. He read a prepared rebuttal to the public notice.

 Response by Cheri: it was her property which is posted ‘no trespassing’.  At no time was the mention of a list put into play. I was discussing how you need to make an appointment; you can’t show up unannounced…See if someone is home and introduce yourself, say reason you are here, don’t just start doing whatever you need to do.

Billy: didn’t see the sign. He believes they don’t have to make an appointment. Sheila: not a requirement, but in the past it’s been the approach the listers have taken.

8.7         MERP: Municipal Energy Resiliency Program: 2 phases: (1) energy assessment on municipal building and the library (done). Phase (2): no-match grant up to $500,000 to improve the energy resiliency of the building. Our current emergency shelter now is the school which the flood showed doesn’t work out.

8.8          ATV ordinance: went into effect on April 20, 2024, the date of the vote of the petition that was defeated. Signed by the selectboard members.

                Discussion initiated by Billy who says there are ‘renegade trails’ at Carpenter Park that people can use, would be a violation to let ATVs into the park without asking the conservation department first. Sheila: it’s a violation now for ATVs to go into the park. She read the parts stating where ATVs may operate, and Carpenter Park is not on there. AJ: the only way could have worked is if there was part of the trail system and it’s not.

Draft Page 4 of 5

8.9         AJ made motion to sign the VT Community Foundation Fiscal Sponsor Agreement for the town to receive a donation on behalf of the fire department which can’t sign it due to not having a 501C3 designation, 2nd by Josh, ayes carried. The town will receive the check and give to the fire department.

8.10       Josh will work with Scott on how much money the town may need to borrow in anticipation of FEMA reimbursement and for the new truck.

8.11       AJ made the motion to move forward with Jack O’Conner’s request for the town to throw up TH47, 2nd by Josh, carried ayes. Mr. O’Conner will pay for all costs, the town will not incur any.

8.12       Josh made the motion to accept the new town hall key policy, 2nd by AJ, with the change of removing ‘must’ to ‘will’.

8.13       AJ made the motion to reappoint Gary Winders as the town health officer, 2nd by Josh, ayes carried.

8.14       AJ made the motion to re-appoint Sandy Edmonds and Volney Gordon as representatives to the governing board of the East Central VT Telecommunications District (ECFiber), 2nd by Josh, ayes carried

8.15       VTrans Grant of Temporary Rights agreement for bridge #15 on TH 48 (Pray Road): Josh made the motion for AJ to sign it, 2nd by AJ, ayes carried.

Peter: been in contact with the RPC and enlisted their support with the grant for urban foliage and trees, for possibly putting a fruit and nut orchard at Carpenter Park. The grants go from $5000-$75,000, and these are no-match. He will work on the January 2025 application with the RPC (regional planning commission)

Sheila: the Washington Agricultural Association may be interested in partnering with the recreation department depending on what is involved.

Peter: he plans on writing into the grant request for a smaller mower.

Susan gave contact for someone who does similar in Corinth.

Josh will receive the ProFleet, LLC,  quote next week, they also do grade certification.

The next scheduled meeting is June 4, 2024.

Josh made the motion to adjourn at 8:07 p.m., 2nd by AJ, ayes carried.

Attest: Lois Deberville, Town Clerk

This is a draft subject to amendment/approval at a future selectboard meeting.

TOWN OF WASHINGTON PLEASE TAKE NOTICE

We, the residents of the town of Washington, State of Vermont, request the town to disallow William Donavan aka Billy Donavan aka newly appointed Town of Washington Lister, to enter our property for any reason. Furthermore, we do not feel any information reviewed by this person will be used for the good of the town or the residents within.

There have been claims that the above person has harassed many residents of the Town of Washington, both in person and by email, demanding to be heard and demanding information that is not his to have. When not given the information he demanded, more correspondence and threats of further action have been made by this person and also false accusations made to the town by this person that he was victimized by ones who he has demanded information.

We do not feel safe allowing the above person on or near our properties nor do we feel safe with this person being allowed to determine values of our properties.”

Board of Abatement meeting agenda 5/21/24

Board of Abatement meeting agenda

05/21/2024, 6:00 pm at the Town Hall/ Town Clerk’s Office

Washington, Vermont

Agenda

  1. Call meeting to order.
  2. Review the Vermont League of Cities and Towns property tax abatement guidance:
    Abatement is the process for relieving taxpayers from the burden of paying property taxes, water
    charges, sewer charges, interest, and/or collection fees. An abatement is granted when the request
    is authorized by statute and when the board, in its discretion, agrees that the request is reasonable
    and proper. The board of abatement has the authority to abate town taxes and statewide education
    property taxes. However, if a board abates statewide educational property taxes, the town is still
    obligated to the State for the full amount of statewide educational taxes due.
    Pursuant to 24 V.S.A. § 1535, abatement may be granted for:
     taxes or charges of persons who have died insolvent, have moved out of state, or who are
    unable to pay their taxes or charges, interest, and collection fees;
     taxes where there is a manifest error, or a mistake of the listers;
     taxes or charges upon real or personal property lost or destroyed during the tax year;
     taxes of a veteran or his or her family members who file late for an exemption claim under
    32 V.S.A. § 3802(11) due to sickness, disability or other good cause; or
     taxes or charges upon mobile homes moved from town due to a change in use of mobile
    home park land or a mobile home park closure.
    Link: https://www.vlct.org/sites/default/files/uploads/resources/documents/info-sheet-property-
    tax-abatement.pdf
  3. Review of Board of Abatement Rules and Procedure (copies available at meeting,
    attached 3-page required document).
  4. Vote, following presentation and discussion, on page two (2) item “time period” to
    allow for abatement hearing.
  5. Elect Chair of the Washington, Vermont, Board of Abatement.
  6. Town Treasurer/ Delinquent Tax Collector to provide updates on the following:
     Delinquent tax collection and need for abatement(s).
     Discussion and ruling for citizen (J.H.) who presented to the Board of Civil
    Authority concerning taxes paid and possible penalties incurred.
  7. Other related business presented by meeting attendees to be discussed, abatement
    items only.
  8. Adjourn

ZOOM is scheduled for 2 hours.

Topic: Board of Abatement Meeting
Time: May 21, 2024 06:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Planning/Zoning Meeting 5/20/2024

Joint Meeting of the Town of Washington VT Planning Commission and the Zoning Board of Adjustment.

      Monday May 20, 2024 at 6:30 PM

                                                        At the Town Hall

                                         2895 VT Rt 110, Washington VT 05675

AGENDA

  1. 6:30 Call the Planning Commission to order
  2. 6:31 Agenda Revisions
  3. 6:31 Public Comment
  4. 6:42 Approve the minutes of the last meeting (Action item)
  5. 6:45 Preplanning for the Town Plan
  6. 7:10 Old or New business
  7. 7:15 Adjourn Planning Commission
  8. 7:16 Call the Zoning Board of Adjustment to order
  9. 7:17 Old or New Business
  10. 7:30 Adjourn

            All Times are Approximate.

            Peter Carbee, Asst. Town Clerk

Zoom meeting.

Topic: Planning & ZBA

Time: May 20, 2024 06:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Meeting ID: 828 6584 4931

Board of Civil Authority

Board of Civil Authority
May 9. 2024
Draft


Present:
BCA members: Anna Strong (Chair), Ray McCormack, Harry Roush, Peter Carbee, Sheila Duranleau, Lois Deberville

Visitors: JH, Susan Davis, Billy Donovan

  1. Anna called the meeting to order at 5:37 p.m.
  2. No agenda changes or additions
  3. Harry made motion to approve the minutes from the October 19, 2023, meeting, 2nd by Peter, ayes carried.
  4. Mr. H explained why he does not feel he should have to pay the late fees and penalties on the 2023 tax bill. The chair thanked him and said there will be a Board of Abatement meeting scheduled for a decision.
  5. Lois had submitted the biennial voter checklist review to the election board on challenging and purging voters no longer residing in Washington. To recap, the BCA sent challenge letters to 23 in October 2023 and 1 in March 2024, and 8 have not responded. They may be purged if they have not voted in two (2) consecutive general elections.
    Susan: how to know if folks are voting who aren’t living here more than they aren’t. Lois: no way to know that. Peter and Harry concurred. The state notifies us if people register to vote elsewhere in Vermont.
  6. Election procedures were discussed for the upcoming town budget re-vote.
    Anna: if someone needs accommodations they have to check in the day before an election no later than the close of the town clerk’s office. By statute, this is for ballot votes only but not for floor vote.

During the review of the recent ATV ordinance vote:

Susan: last paper vote was not private. Peter: could return to seat and vote, most folks brought them up to the ballot box.


Billy: thinks statute requires secrecy, says there was only 1 table, asked about the stand-up voter booth. Peter: that would be nice but only 4 corners for those 200 people. Lois: there were 2 tables. Sheila: usually people take the paper (ballot) and make their mark and put in box.


Billy: state statute required that the ATV ordinances be posted at the vote. Peter: there were copies on the table for folks.


Billy to Lois: what is the protocol for handling checklist. Lois: did checklist as seen at the vote and brought back to town hall. We do not have to keep the checklist; statute says only ballots.

  1. Harry: number of properties that the assessed value is excessively high, taxes that were due don’t represent the value, when such properties go for tax sale the town makes the first bid. If nobody bids then the town ends up owning these properties and it’ll cost more to get rid of them than they are worth. He and Scott have discussed properties to abate.

Anna: will have abatement meeting on May 21, 2024, at 5:30 p.m.

Members of Board of Abatement are Justices of The Peace, Listers, Treasurer, Town Clerk, Selectboard.

Sheila made motion to adjourn at 7:08 p.m, 2nd by Harry, ayes carried. Attest: Lois Deberville

WASHINGTON SELECTBOARD AGENDA 5/14/24 & ZOOM

WASHINGTON SELECTBOARD AGENDA

Regular Meeting
May 14, 2024 at 6:30 pm
Town Hall, Washington VT

1

Final: posted on 5/10/2024

  1. Call meeting to order
  2. Review and approve minutes from the March 28, 2024 special meeting and May 7,
    2024 special informational budget meeting.
  3. Adjustments to agenda (changes or additions to the agenda)
  4. Public Comment (on items that are not on the agenda)
  5. Visitors
  6. Updates/Reports from Town Officials
  7. Organizational Assignments (action)
    7.1 Annual review of Selectboard Meeting Rules of Procedure
    7.2 Highway
    7.3 Town clerk liaison/day to day issues
    7.4 HR
    7.5 Policies/Ordinances
    7.6 Grants – Highway, MERP
    7.7 Approve warrants
    7.8 Finance
    7.9 Law enforcement
    7.10 Emergency management
    7.11 Other
  8. Business
    8.1 Reimbursement for library flood repair $16,662.25 (information)
    8.2 Town reappraisal and updated parcel maps (information)
    8.3 World Fish Migration Day (information)
    8.4 Tree removal in the right-of-way grant (information)
    8.5 Hazard mitigation funding programs notice of funding opportunities (information)
    8.6 “Notice” submitted to Selectboard on April 3, 2024 (information)
    8.7 MERP energy assessments (information)
    8.8 ATV Ordinance, effective April 20, 2024 (sign)
    8.9 VT Community Foundation Fiscal Sponsor Agreement (sign)
    8.10 Borrowing money in anticipation of FEMA reimbursement and for the new truck (action)
    8.11 TH47 and request from Jack O’Conner (action)
    8.12 Draft town hall key policy (review and adopt)
    8.13 Reappoint Gary Winders as Health Officer (action)
    8.14 Representatives to the Governing Board of the East Central VT Telecommunications
    District (action)
    8.15 VTrans Grant of Temporary Rights agreement for bridge #15 on TH 48 (action)
  9. Next meeting: the next meeting scheduled is a regular meeting on June 4, 2024

Zoom meeting-scheduled for 3 hours

Topic: Selectboard May 14 2024
Time: May 14, 2024 06:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Meeting ID: 864 1602 4355

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